Wednesday, March 2, 2011
SHIVRATHRI MARCH 2ND 2011
AS USUALLY MY FIRST POST OF THIS MONTH ABOUT GOD.I ALWAYS KEEP GOD FIRST.SO ASUSUAL I AM POSTING ABOUT GOD, MY FAVOURITE LORD SHIVA.
Today is Pradosha vratham (Saumya Vaara Pradosha vratham) and Maha shivrathri. Today is the great day of Lord Shiva and a big day for his followers for prayers, fasting and vigil. Shivrathri is one of the major Hindu festivals, where people across the country observe the rituals for this auspicious day. Lord Sadaashhiva is the Lord of all deities due to whose grace the entire universe exists. Lord Shiva is also one who bestows his grace on all and instills into them fearlessness and power.
The secret of Creation is evident from the description of the form of Siva. The crescent moon on Sivaâ€™s head symbolizes the consciousness in human beings, the Ganga symbolizes the Life Force and the snakes on Sivas body represent the myriad of living beings. He resides on a silver mountain. His dearest friend is Kubera, the Lord of Wealth. Despite being endowed with all these, why was He obliged to carry the begging bowl? To demonstrate to the world that every kind of wealth is a hindrance to spiritual advancement, Siva renounced everything. It is through renunciation Siva became the eternal embodiment of supreme bliss.
Shivaratri is one of the holiest nights of the year. It is the night dedicated to the worship of Lord Shiva. Literally, Shivratri means, â€œThe great night of Shiva.â€ It is celebrated on the 13th or 14th day of the dark half of the month of February - March. Maha Shivaratri 2011 date is MARCH 2nd, 2011. Devotees observe fasting and Keep vigil during night on Shivratri to get blessings of Lord Shiva. There is a reference to this in one of the Puranas, where Shiva himself tells Parvati Devi [the Divine Mother] that this day is particularly dear to him, and that those who perform the prescribed austerities on this day will be freed from all sins.
Many stories are there about the shivrathri. Some says that the first Shivaling originated in the night of Shivaraatri. Some says that it on this night that Lord Shiva married Goddess Parvati. This is why the day is also called Shiv Gouri Divas. There are numerous legends about Shivarathri. Here're a few popular stories of Shivarathri.
NOTE:I POSTED THE STORIES IN MY PREVIOUS POST IN THE YEAR FEB 2010.
SO NOT REPEATING THE SAME.
How to celebrate:-
POSTED THE STORIES IN MY PREVIOUS POST IN THE YEAR FEB 2010.
SO NOT REPEATING.
While most of the Hindu festivals involve feasting and rejoicing, Shivratri is about fasting and prayer, and is observed for one's progress in spirituality The Shiva temples are busy and crowded with people gathering for worship throughout the day, where special poojas are offered to the Lord from day break. People offer Bilva leaves to the Lord, which is considered auspicious.
Message Of shivrathri:-
Mahashivratri imparts the need to bring about a right balance in our lifestyle, in order to realise the highest truth of Self realization. Spending the day in prayer, meditation and fasting, conveys the truth to curb excessive of activities. Further keeping vigil on Shivaratri also compliments the truth of a pure mind. A pure mind can be achieved through a moderation in food, sleep and activities. Such a mind becomes the tool to achieve Self realization.
Shivaratri, in its essence, beneath all the religious rituals, thus carries the truth of Self realization. The night of Shivratri is especially auspicious for winning this same battle within ourselves â€“ the battle between good and evil, between right and wrong, between poison and nectar, between death and immortality.
All the rituals on the night of Shivratri are meant to cleanse the ignorance and for the self realization. The fasting, rituals and chanting are meant to kill desire, greed, illusion, arrogance, jealousy, and anger. This will make you a better person and prepare you to face the challenges.
It is said that Shiva showers all his blessings on people, who remember him with an honest and true heart. There is a story that old timers narrate. In the olden days if you went to a village and asked â€œCan you direct me to the house where daily shiva puja takes placeâ€, the bystanders will tell you to look for the house in front of which an elephant is tiedâ€. Lord Shiva is known to be very generous giving away boons, although, he would test his devotees to the core. Shiva not only finds no faults with others, but if someone has even a little good quality, he magnifies it greatly.â€ That is why Shiva is glorified as one who immediately fulfils every ones desires.
It is in fact to be noted that Lord shiva is worshipped by the devas like Vishnu, Brahma, Indra, by asuras like bana, ravana, tripura, surapadma, by humans like shankara bhagavatpada, by other creatures like jatayu, sampadi (eagles), vali (monkey) and the list goes on and on. One finds in the puranas the variety of people of different backgrounds and qualities worship the Lord shiva. There are many histories of temples which talk of the cranes, bees, elephants, spiders, snakes worshipping the Lord and getting blessed. So the Lord as the Supreme blesses anyone who worships in sincere devotion. There is no discrimination on who the seeker is. The Lord is so merciful that He showers the boons one look for when there is a determination to seek Him. It is evident from the history of asura bana who attained a great fame of his valor and got the place in the abode of Lord shiva all due to his determined worship of the Lord. So anybody who worships the Lord sincerely could get blessed with Its Grace irrespective of the caste, creed, race, power, status and qualities.
On this night of Shivratri, as we worship Bhagwan Shiva, it is also the night that we must pray for the strength to take his message to heart! Let us not only worship him, but let us emulate him. He who is willing to peacefully swallow the poison, he who is willing to sacrifice for the family, for the community and for humanity is the true Mahadeva.
Let us use our puja, our prayers, our meditations on this night to pray for divine intervention so that within ourselves the good might vanquish the evil, the nectar within us might emerge, rather than poison, and that we too may be carried from death to immortality.