Mahashivratri is observed across India to worship Lord Shiva – the “destroyer of evil”. Mahashivratri, a festival of the union of Shiva and Shakti, will be observed on March 4 and will be continued till March 5. Mahashivratri is also called the “the great night of Shiva” and comes just before the arrival of Spring season.
Mahashivratri is not for festivities and merry-making but to worship Lord Shiva, introspect and become meditative. Lord Shiva, depending on his various characters, have been recognised and called by various names: Maheshwara, Shambhu, Soma, Shashvata, Parameshwara and others. Mahashivratri date keeps changing every year as it is relevant to the lunar calendar. Next year in 2020, the grand festival will be celebrated on February 21.
It is also spelt as Shivratri, Shiva Ratri, Shivarathri and Sivaratri. In Kashmir Shaivism, the festival is called Har-Ratri or Herath. There are several legends around the Mahashivratri festival.
The significance of Mahashivratri:
Mahashivratri marks a recognition of “overcoming darkness and ignorance”. According to a legend, Maha Shivaratri was the day when Shiva drank poisonous negativity to guard the world. Another legend says that it is the night when Shiva performs the heavenly dance of creation, preservation and destruction, while some think that this is the night when Shiva and Parvati got married.
How is Mahashivaratri Observed:
On Maha Shivaratri day, after finishing morning rituals devotees observe full day fast and take food the next day. They also practice yoga, meditation and self-restraint. The faithful devotees keep awake all night, also called “Jaagaran”.
Pilgrimage to Jyotirlingams is also popular on this day. People head to Lord Shiva temples to pray and pay respect.
The major Jyotirlinga Shiva temples of India – in Varanasi and Somnatha – are visited on Maha Shivaratri by the Shiva devotees. It is also observed in the temples all over Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Telangana.
Mahashivratri Muhuruta and Puja Timings:
The Nishita Kaal Puja Time
is 12:14 am to 1:03 am. The duration will be 49 minutes.
Maha Shivaratri Parana Time will be 6:49 am to 3:33 pm.
Ratri First Prahar Puja Time = 6:28 pm to 9:33 pm
Ratri Second Prahar Puja Time = 9:33 pm to 12:38 am
Ratri Third Prahar Puja Time = 12:38 am to 3:44 am
Ratri Fourth Prahar Puja Time = 3:44 am to 6:49 am
Newswaves Team Wishes, One & All Happy Mahashivarathri!