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Origin & Spiritual Significance of Shivratri PDF Print E-mail
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Written by smarti   
Thursday, 11 February 2010 22:56

Origin of Shivratri

The Shivarathri is the day dedicated to the worship of Shiva and dedicated on the second half of the (Krishna Paksha) of every Lunar month, the fourteenth day is dedicated as Shivarathri, but this Shivarathri is celebrated in grand way in the month of Maagha, the 11th Lunar month. (February or March month of English Calendar) and called MAHA SHIVARATHRI. The celebrations take place mainly in the evening and night. Shivrathri was the day when Shiva married to Parvathi.

The legends in Purana relate the origin of Mahashivarathri ceremony to the story of the Ocean-churning (Samudra mathana) where during Churning of Sea, “Kaalakoota” (poison for life) emerged and the Devas and Asuras terrified as it was capable of shrinking the entire universe back to nothing and then they ran to Shiva for help, so, to protect the world from the evil effects, Shiva drank the deadly poison, but Parvathi held it in his throat to prevent the poison, from being swallowed. Due to the effect of this poison, shiva’s neck turned blue, and thus he came to be called Neelakanta (the blue throated). This happened at midnight on the day preceding the new moon in the month of Maagha, to be known as Maha Shivarathri and this day became an auspicious day for Shiva, hence worship of Shiva on this auspicious day is more effective. It says that a devotee who performs sincere worship of Lord Shiva on the auspicious day of Shivratri is absolved of sins and attains moksha.

 

Spiritual Significance of Shivaratri

 

Lord Shiva is the God of Meditation and destruction. Meditation, also destruct negativity and what is un-necessary. Because the negativity attacks our consciousness adversely, have to be destroyed, so that the new, the bliss, the awakening within and the Shiva tatva transmute all those negative tendencies into positive, pure. So, Shiva is also said to be, the destruction of the destructive forces including the past negative Karmas (sin).


In spiritual practices, where our consciousness matters highly, there are certain days on which the awakening force is more powerful & effective. And Meditation on these days is more effective and becomes spontaneous. When one meditate, he finds oneself filled with awakening energies and the disturbing elements like anger, lust, possessiveness, jealousy and insecurities, cannot find it easy to attack one’s consciousness and spiritual energies on certain days are more effective so these days are of spiritual significance and in HINDUISM these days are celebrated by one or other names.


Similarly, the Shivratri is the night of meditation, the night when the grace of Lord Shiva is maximum and the awakening force, Shiva tatva is with vigor. So, by meditating on Shivarathri, it is very easy to feel Lord Shiva’s grace and get soaked in his energy, deep in meditation. Maha means great, and Maha Shivratri is the great night of Shiva, greatest among all Shivaratri.

 

The devotees of Lord Shiva perform the ritual worship of Shivratri with care and devotion. They observe day and nigh fast and give sacred bath to Shiva Linga with honey, milk, water etc. Hindus consider it extremely auspicious to worship Lord Shiva on a Shivaratri as it is believed that worship of Lord Shiva with devotion and sincerity absolves a devotee of past sins. The devotee reaches the abode of Lord Shanker and lives there happily. He is also liberated from the cycle of birth and death and attains moksha or salvation.

Significance of Shivaratri for Women

Mahashivratri is also considered to be an extremely significant festival by women. Married and unmarried women observe fast and perform Shiva Puja with sincerity to appease Godess Parvati who is also regarded as ‘Gaura’ - one who bestows marital bliss and long and prosperous married life. Unmarried women also pray for a husband like Lord Shiva who is regarded as the ideal husband.

 

Last Updated on Saturday, 13 February 2010 17:02
 
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