SHIVARATRI FESTIVAL

                             


Day/Month of Celebration:
 13th night/14th day in the Krishna Paksha  of the month of Phalguna. (Feb/March as per English Calender).


God Worshipped  on this Occassion: 
Lord Shiva

Special Food Prepared:
Fasting is observed on this day.

Practise on this Day :  
Day is started with offering poojas at home and people also visit  nearest Shiva temple, to watch Abhishekam of Lord shiva (Ritual bath to the Shiva Lingam with milk, honey, water and offerings of Bael (Bilva) leave to the Lord Shiva).  Which is followed by all day fasting, and  chanting  "Om Namoh Shivaya" mantra.

 Nights of Shivratri, Devotees stay awake all night and spend the night in Shiva temples in worship of Lord Shiva. Singing of hymns and verses in praise and devotion of Lord Shiva besides the intense chanting of Om Namah Shivay, the mantra that is said free people from all their sins, continue through the night on Shivaratri.


Story associated with Shivaratri:(My Favourite part :)

Samudra Manthana :

During Samudra manthana (Churning of Ocean for Amrutha),  lots of things emerged out of ocean.  Haalaa-hala, a pot of poison was one among them. This terrified the Gods and demons as the poison was so toxic that it effects would have wiped out the entire creation. On the advice of Lord Vishnu, Gods approached Lord Shiva for help and protection as only he could swallow it without being affected. On the request of gods and out of compassion for living beings, Lord Shiva drank the poison. However, Parvati - Lord Shiva’s consort pressed his neck so that the poison does not reach his stomach. Thus, it stayed in his throat neither going up nor going down and Shiva remained unharmed. The poison was so potent that it changed the color of Lord Mahadeva’s neck to blue. So, Lord Shiva is also called Neelakantha (the blue-necked one) where ‘Neela’ means blue and ‘Kantha’ means neck or throat. However  gods  also kept Lord Shiva awake during the night to avoid poison getting down into the body. Thus, Gods kept a vigil in contemplation of Lord Shiva. To amuse Shiva and to keep him awake, the gods took turn performing various dances and playing music. As the day broke out, Lord Shiva, pleased with their devotion blessed them all. Shivaratri is the celebration of this event by which Shiva saved the world. Since then, on this day and night - devotees fast, keep vigil, sing glories of Lord and meditate.

Story of King ChitraBanu:

The story, as told by Bhishma while resting on the bed of arrows and discoursing on Dharma, says that once King Chitrabhanu of the Ikshvaku dynasty who ruled over the whole of Jambudvipa was observing a fast with his wife, it being the day of Maha Shivaratri. The sage Ashtavakra came on a visit to the court of the king and inquired the king about reasons for keeping a fast.Answering the sage’s query, King Chitrabhanu who had the gift of remembering the incidents from his previous birth said that in the past birth he was a hunter in Varanasi and his name was Suswara. His livelihood was to kill and sell birds and animals. One day while he was roaming through the woods in search of animals, he was overtaken by the darkness of the night. To seek shelter from wild animals, Suswarna seeked shelter in the branches of nearest tree, which happened to a bael tree. Hunger and thirst tormented Suswarna and kept him awake all night.  To pass away time, Suswarna engaged himself in plucking bael leaves and dropping them down onto the ground. Having passed the night thus, next morning, Suswarna  bought some food for himself and his family. But, the moment he was about to break his fast, a stranger came to him begging for food. Humbly, Suswarna served food to stranger first and then had his own. Later, at the time of his death, Suswarna saw two messengers of Lord Shiva who were sent down to conduct his soul to the abode of Lord Shiva. It was then that Suswarna learnt for the great merit he had earned by the unconscious worship of Lord Shiva during the night of Shivaratri. The divine messengers told Suswarna that there was a Lingam at the bottom of the tree on which he spent the night. The leaves he dropped therefore fell on the Lingam.  Besides, he had observed a fast all day and all night. Thus, Suswarna had unconsciously worshiped the Lord Shiva.

108 names of Lord shiva

Om Shivaya namaha
Om Maheshwaraya namaha
Om Shambhave namaha
Om Pinaakine namaha
Om Sasi-shekharaya namaha
Om Vama-devaya namaha
Om Virupakshaya namaha
Om Kapardhine namaha
Om Nila-lohitaya namaha
Om Shankaraya namaha
Om Shula-panine namaha
Om Khatvamgene namaha
Om Vishnu-vallabhaya namaha
Om Sipi-vistaya namaha
Om Ambika nadhaya namaha
Om Srikantaya namaha
Om Bhakta-vastalaya namaha
Om Bhavaya namaha
Om Sharwaya namaha
Om Trilokeshaya namaha
Om Siti-kantaya namaha
Om Siva-priyaya namaha
Om Ugraya namaha
Om Kapaline namaha
Om Kaomarine namaha
Om Amdhakasura-sudanaya namaha
Om Ganga-dharaya namaha
Om Lalaa-takshaya namaha
Om Kaala-kalaya namaha
Om Kripa-nidhaye namaha
Om Bheemaya namaha
Om Parashu-hastaya namaha
Om Mruga-panine namaha
Om Jata-dharaaya namaha
Om Kailasa-vasine namaha
Om Kavachine namaha
Om Katoraya namaha
Om Tripuran-takaya namaha
Om Vrushankaya namaha
Om Vrusha-bharudaya namaha
Om Bhasmo-dhulitha vigrahaya namaha
Om Sama-priyaaya namaha
Om Sarwamayaaya namaha
Om Traemurthaye namaha
Om Anishwaraya namaha
Om Sarwagnyaya namaha
Om Paramatmane namaha
Om SOma-suryagni-lochanaya namaha
Om Havishe namaha
Om Yagnya-mayaaya namaha
Om SOmaya namaha
Om Pancha-vaktraya namaha
Om Sada-shivaya namaha
Om Vishveshwa-raya namaha
Om Virabhadraya namaha
Om Gana-nadhaya namaha
Om Praja-pataye namaha
Om Hiranya-retaya namaha
Om Durdharshaya namaha
Om Girishaya namaha
Om Giree-shaya namaha
Om Anaghaya namaha
Om Bhujanga-bhusha-naya namaha
Om Bhargaya namaha
Om Giri-dhanvine namaha
Om Giri-priyaaya namaha
Om Krutti-vasaya namaha
Om Pura-rataye namaha
Om Bhagavaye namaha
Om Pramadha-dipaya namaha
Om Mrutyumjayaya namaha
Om Shukshma-tanave namaha
Om Jagadvayapine namaha
Om Jagad-gurave namaha
Om VyOma-keshaya namaha
Om Mahasena-janakaya namaha
Om Charu-vikramaya namaha
Om Rudraya namaha
Om Bhuta-pataye namaha
Om Sthanane namaha
Om Ahirbhudnyaya namaha
Om Digamba-raya namaha
Om Ashta-murthaye namaha
Om Anekat-maya namaha
Om Satvikaya namaha
Om Shudha-vigrahaya namaha
Om Shashwataya namaha
Om Khanda-parashave namaha
Om Ajaaya namaha
Om Pashavimo-chakaya namaha
Om Mrudaya namaha
Om Pashu-pataye namaha
Om Devaya namaha
Om Maha-devaya namaha
Om Avya-yaya namaha
Om Haraye namaha
Om Pusha-damta-bhethre namaha
Om Avya-graya namaha
Om Dakshadwara-haraaya namaha
Om Haraya namaha
Om Bhaganetrabhitre namaha
Om Avya-ktaya namaha
Om Saha-srakshaya namaha
Om Saha-srapadave namaha
Om Apavarga-pradaya namaha
Om Anantaya namaha
Om Tarakaya namaha
Om Parameshwaraya namaha
Iti Shree Shiva Ashtottara Shatanamavali Samaptam



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