--> Skip to main content


Showing posts from March 5, 2016

Why do we celebrate Shivratri – Reasons for observing Mahashivaratri?

Shivaratri, or Mahashivratri , is one of the most important days in Hinduism. There are numerous reasons regarding the origin of Shivaratri and most of reasons for observing Shivratri can be traced to the Puranas. A few important legends are detailed below. Origin of Shivratri based on hunter unknowingly dropping Bilva leaves on Shiva Lingam There once lived a tribal man who was a hunter and a staunch a Shiva devotee. He used to go for hunting on all days to feed his family. One day the hunter lost his way while hunting and was trapped in the forest at night. Soon wild animals started to gather around him and he climbed a Bel or Bilva tree. Sitting there he remembered his wife and children and tears started rolling from his eyes. In order to keep himself awake, he started plucking Bilva leaves and dropped it down repeating ‘Om Namah Shivaya’ – the Panchakshari Mantra. The hunter unknowingly fasted the whole day and did not sleep in the night. In the morning,

Swami Sivananda on the Reason for Observing Shivaratri

Silent adorations to Lord Siva, consort of Parvati, the destructive aspect of Brahman, who is known by the names Sambhu, Sankara, Mahadeva, Sadasiva, Visvanatha, Hara, Tripurari, Gangadhara, Sulapani, Nilakantha, Dakshinamurti, Chandrasekhara, Nilalohita, etc., who is the bestower of auspiciousness, immortality and divine knowledge on His devotees, and who does Tandava Nritya or the Dance of Death at the end of Time or Cosmic Pralaya, and who is the real Regenerator but not the destroyer. Maha Sivaratri means the great night consecrated to Lord Siva. In the Santi Parva of the Mahabharata, Bhishma refers to the observance of the Mahashivratri, by king Chitrabhanu, when he was giving the discourse on Dharma, resting on his bed of arrows.