What is Mahashivratri
Mahashivratri is a Hindu festival celebrated at night. To honor lord Shiv. On the day of Shivratri, we awake all night as it is a belief that on this auspicious day Lord Shiv comes in close proximity to humanity. Lord Shiv manifested in the form of Shivlinga on the day of Mahashivratri. The temples are beautifully decorated on the day of Mahashivratri. There is mad rush of people to worshiship Shiv and seek blessings. People are seen chanting the mantra”Om Namha Shiva for inner enlightment.
Mahashivratri marks the day of marriage of shiv and Parvati. Shiv is known by different names Triloki, Trinetri, Neelkantha and Bhole Shankar. Shiv is a mystic God calm mediating in the Himalayas and also known for venting anger. On the day of Mahahivratri Shiv performed the cosmic dance Tandav Nratya. Shiv is Nirakar a formless god. Shiv is neither male nor female.
Story of Mahashivratri
Once upon a time there lived a hunter Grurudruh. He used to make livelihood by hunting animals.On the day of Mahashivratri when he went for hunting and unable to find any prey, in despair he reached a tree near the bank of a lake. He carried some water to drink and jumped to the tree. Suprisingly, it was the tree of bel patra and just below it was located the natural shivlinga which was covered by by dry bel leaves because of which the Shivling was hidden. Unknowlingly, some leaves and some drops of water fell on the shivlinga located at the bottom of the tree.The hunter was starved on the day of Mahashivratri. Thus, the tradition of observing fast offering bel patra came into practice on this sacred festival.
The Custom of Savouring Bhang on Mahashivratri
It is beleieved that bhang is sister of Goddess Ganga. That is why bhang and ganga dwell on shiv’s head It is also known that cannabis is another form of Parvati . She lives with Shiv along with sister Ganga. In vedic scriptures bhang is considered a divine plant and source of freedom. The drink helps in treatment of several medical diseases.
Relevance Of Mahashivratri
As Shiv saved the earth from the pot of poison emerged during Sumdra Manthan. So if we are true devotee of Shiv we must save this mankind from the destructive forces with our pious deeds. If God is pleased by offerings then all the sins of Kalyug would have been washed away by years ago.We continue the rituals on the day of Mahashivratri still there is so much of grief, misery and evilness around. The celebration of Mahashivratri would hold good if we remove the darkness of ego from our hearts and guard our intelligence to have complete control of mind in midst of conflict, adversity and failure.To be strongly detached from worldly pleasures and perform our duties with due diligence.