Hindu Of Universe

“God’s light is within you, It never leaves you.”

Shiva (means auspicious) also called Mahadeva (means Great God) is the supreme god of Hinduism.

And Maha-Shivaratri (Great Night of Shiva) is the most important sectarian festival of the year for Shaivites.

It is the most sacred festival of Shiva that falls on the fourteenth (Chaturdashi) day of the dark half (waning phase of the moon -Krishna Paksha) of the Hindu month of Phalguna (February March).

Lord Shiva is formless, shapeless, and timeless, and one of the most revered Hindu deities.

It is believed that worshipping Lord Shiva on Maha Shivratri is the easiest way to attains salvation.

Hindu devotees stay awake the entire night on this auspicious festival.

They perform puja, aarti, chant Vedic mantras, Siva Chalisa, practice sadhana, and meditation.

These sacred practices bestow a sense of peace and positive vibration to live a blissful life.

Meaning of Maha Shivratri:

“Maha” means great.

“Shiva” means auspicious.

“Ratri” means that which gives rest, and comfort.

“Mahashivratri or the great night of Shiva” is the night of that transcendental divine consciousness which gives relief from all three types of problems, i.e. adhyatmik, adhibhoutik, and adidaivik as well as awakens every particle of our body towards truth, love, beauty, peace, and benevolence – the ethereal qualities of Shiva.

Significance of Maha Shivaratri:

• According to the lunar cycle, 12 Shivaratris occur in a year, out of which the Maha Shivaratri is considered to be the most auspicious one.

Ancient seers of India describe that offering prayers to Lord Shiva while staying awake on this divine night is helpful to develop inner consciousness.

• Astrologically, on this holy day, the sun and moon come in a particular alignment which is helpful to elevate the mind.

Indian astrologers advocate that this auspicious day is congenial for spiritual practices, meditation, and for natural upsurge of energies in our spine.

• Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati got married on this day.

Devotees worship Shivalinga with milk, water, and honey and decorate with different flowers and BelPatra.

Devotees celebrate this festival with great serenity, observe a complete fast to seek the blessings of the Lord.

• There is absolutely no difference between the individual soul and Lord Shiva.

And Mahashivratri is the perfect day to celebrate the Shiva tattva (principle/ energy) in us.

Spiritual seekers love to meditate on Mahashivratri which is helpful to understand the higher truths of life.

• The Shiva Purana says that a person who fasts on this divine day can reap the benefits of a whole year’s rigorous prayers.

Maha Shivaratri Rituals: On this auspicious day of Mahashivaratri, after completing the morning routine, devotees should take a Sankalp to observe a full-day fast and should break it only after the final aarti in the mid-night or on the next day after taking bath.

On this day, devotees should take a second bath in the evening before visiting a temple of Lord Shiva.

Shivaratri puja can be performed one time or four times during the night while offering water, milk, curd, honey, flowers, and Diya.

Devotees stay awake all night and spend the darkest night in Shiva temples while listening to stories of Lord Shiva, singing songs/ bhajans, and chanting mantras to praise Lord Shiva and to receive His graceful blessings.

Mantras to chant on Shivratri:

• Panchakshari Shiva Mantra: Om Namah Shivaya

• Rudra Mantra: Om Namah Bhagavate Rudraya

• Rudra Gayatri Mantra: Om Tatpurushaya Vidmahe Mahadevaya Dhimahi Tanno Rudrah Prachodayat

• Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra: Om Tryambakam yajaamahe sugandhim pushtivardhanam, Urvaarukamiva bandhanaan-mrityormuksheeya maamritaat

Legends of Maha Shivratri Hindu sacred scriptures describe a number of popular legends related to the auspicious festival of Mahashivaratri.

These legends explain the importance of this day and also throw light on the greatness of Lord Shiva and His supremacy over all other deities.

According to Hindu Mythology, the holy river Ganga descended from the heavens.

On this divine night of Shivaratri, Lord Shiva held out His thick matted hair to hold the Ganges and softened Ganga’s journey towards the earth.

And for this reason, devotees celebrate this day by offering the holy Ganga water on Shivalinga.

• According to another story, it marks the day when Lord Shiva married Goddess Parvati.

The Shivratri legend also says that observing a day-long fast and worshipping Lord Shiva with great vigor can destroy all bad karmas and bring miraculous changes to the life of a devotee.

• According to Shaivites, Shivratri is celebrated to express gratitude to Lord Shiva who saved the world from the poison that emerged from the Khirsagar (sea) during Samudra Manthan.

It is believed that the merciful Lord Shiva drank the poison and stored it in his throat–which made his throat turn blue (due to this reason He is called by another name Neelkanth).

A story from Shiva Purana narrates: one-day Goddess Parvati asked Shiva that His devotees perform various rituals to please Him, but which one actually pleases him the most.

To this, the benevolent Lord Shiva replied that the 14th night of the new moon, during the month of Phalgun is His favorite day which is celebrated as Shivaratri.

On this day devotees observe strict spiritual discipline as well as offer Him bel-leaves and Gangajal and these leaves and water are most precious to him than all other offerings.

Knowing this, Goddess Parvati was extremely happy and she narrated the same to Her friends.

Through them, the word spread all over the creation just like wildfire, and devotees of Lord Shiva began to celebrate Shivaratri by fasting and by performing the ceremonial baths of Gangajal and making offerings of bel leaves.

Summary: Hindus celebrate the festival of Maha Shivaratri on a humongous scale.

Some devotees celebrate the festival during the day while others celebrate it throughout the night by organizing Jagran (staying awake), singing religious hymns, listening to stories of Lord Shiva.

Most devotees observe a strict fast for a day and break the fast after offering prayer to Lord Shiva the next day.

Vedic texts advocate that this divine night brings a sense of deep serenity and benevolence, and chanting of mantras and meditation done on this day is a hundred times more effective.


Hymns and Mantras turn on spirituality; the world looks divine while meditating & chanting his name.

He is the God of gods, Lord Shiva.

On the 14th day of the waning Moon (Chaturdashi) of Falgun, just the day before the new moon, the darkest night of the year, Shivratri is celebrated as per North Indian Calendar.

While as per the South Indian calendar, it comes in the month of Magha.

Believers remain awake and offer prayers, perform rituals, and pay devotion to the most graceful & powerful God, Lord Shiva.

Mahashivratri is very important to most people who are on the right spiritual journey.

Maha Shivratri Date In This Year, The Holy Festival dedicated to Lord Shiva will be celebrated on February 18, , Saturday.

It is one of the most significant festivals for Hindus.

Chaturdashi Tithi Begins: 08:02 Pm on Feb 18,

Ratri First Prahar Puja: 06:13 pm to 11:24 pm

Ratri Second Prahar Puja: 11:24 pm to 12:35 am, Feb 19

Ratri Third Prahar Puja: 12:35 am to 03:46 am, Feb 19

Ratri Fourth Prahar Puja: 03:46 am to 06:56 am, Feb 19

Chaturdashi Tithi Ends: 04:18 Pm on Feb 19,

Why is Mahashivratri Celebrated? – Festival Of Devon Ke Dev Mahadev

Do you know Shivratri comes every month? Yes, there is Shivratri in every luni-solar month also known as Masik Shivratri. Cool, but what is Maha Shivratri? Anything Special? In literal sense, Mahashivratri means ‘The Great Night Of Shiva’.

It is the night when Lord Shiva performs the heavenly dance of creation, preservation, and destruction.

However, it comes in the month of February or March before the arrival of Summer.

The festival of Maha Shivratri is celebrated on a humongous scale in all parts of the country, and wherever Indians live all over the world.

And why not? It is the night of Shiva – the easiest of the Holy Trinity to Please.

Lord Shiva – The Main God Of Holy Trinity

As per Hindu beliefs, read the below points about the Trinity Gods:

Generator Of Universe – Lord Brahma

Organizer or Preserver – Lord Vishnu

Destroyer – Lord Shiva

Now, see arrange the first letter of the above three points together. It will be read as ‘GOD’.

That’s one of the easiest & impactful ways to describe the Trinity Gods.

The hermetic God, with his abode in Mount Kailash in the Himalayas, is believed to be formless, shapeless, and timeless.

Talking about Shivalinga, a mystic symbol of Lord Shiva, who is considered the easiest of the Gods to please.

And as we all know, his blessings give us enormous strength to fulfill our wishes.

The main significance of worshipping Lord Shiva on Maha Shivratri is that one attains salvation.

Maha Shivratri Story: Marriage Of Shiva & Shakti

Maha Shivratri is dedicated to the celebration of Lord Shiva & Goddess Parvati’s Marriage.

This day, devotees keep fast called Shivratri Vratam throughout the day in the name of Shiv Bhakti (Shiv’s Devotion).

As per belief, Goddess Parvati wanted to marry Shiva, and every Hindu God knowing this fact wanted the same.

But Shiva declined and destroyed this proposal through his Third Eye.

Devi Parvati kept hope alive and continued praying for Shiva as she wanted him at any cost. Seeing her indescribable love, Shiva couldn’t deny but nodded for the Marriage.

Happiness flooded all over the place, all the Gods & Goddess were invited to be the part of a historic Marriage of Lord Shiva & Goddess Parvati including Ghosts & Spirits.

Such an Overwhelming Story to listen to, read, & to even celebrate! After going through this story, the only words that believers can say are Om Namah Shivaya…

The festival is marking the initiation of a bond between Shiv-Shakti.

This is why  Mahashivratri is celebrated with great fervour across India.

Bhang Connection During Mahashivratri – Samudra Manthan

A period when gods and goddesses arrived together just to whip up a drink of immortality ‘Amrita.’

The poison ‘Halahala’ was so poisonous that it can destroy the whole universe including all the Gods & Goddesses.

Immediately, the poison came out, the space began to heat up, killing plants and animals.

Ready to see the entry of Hero of this Story?

Then comes Lord Shiva, who ended up consuming the entire poison in order to save the universe during Samudra Manthan.

But wait, you’ll be surprised to know that Shiva did not Swallow, but kept it in his throat.

Because of one of the deadliest poison, his throat started turning blue, causing immense heat.

Hence, he is also known as ‘Blue Throated’ or ‘Neelkantha’.
Various efforts were being made in order to cool down Lord Shiva, & ‘Bhang’ was also given to him as act of coolant & lowers down metabolism.

This is how ‘Bhang’ is associated with Lord Shiva Life.

So, the devotees offer Bhang to appease Lord Shiva on Maha Shivratri.

Fasting Guide In Shivaratri

Devotees can start their day with early morning Shiva Puja and give ritual baths to the Shiva Lingam.

Note, wearing fresh clothes is a must.

This goes without saying that keep yourself away from bad thoughts, bad groups, and most importantly ‘bad words’.

In short, when you are in Lord Shiva’s lap, just vanish all the evils from your surroundings.

On a serious note, feel fortunate to do all these rituals, chanting ‘Om Namah Shivay’ or Har Har Mahadev is itself one of the greatest things one can do in this universe.

Coming back to the process, staying in Shiva’s temple, chanting different names & right Mantras of Lord Shiva would be the ideal things you can do the whole day.

The significance of this festival is to perform Puja at night and break the fast on the next day after taking a bath.

You need to offer fruits, leaves, sweets, and milk to Lord Shiva while performing Puja.
On the occasion of Maha Shivratri, devotees offer ‘Rudrabhishek to the Shivling with water, curd, sugarcane syrup, milk, honey and other things.

where they bathe the ‘Shivling’ with different substances and each of them has a specific significance.

Offer Datura flower and fruit.

However, the process of performing Rudrabhishek is well defined in Shukla Yajurveda. Mistakes in the process can make it ineffective.

Everyone knows that Lord Shiva is Bholenath (one who gets appeased easily) and even Vidhvansak (one who gets angry and destroys everything). 

Hence, Perform Personalised Rudrabhishek Puja on Shivratri to gain divine blessings of Lord Shiva.

However, Shiva Ratri puja can be performed one time or four times during the night. The whole night can be divided into four quarters to perform Shiva puja four times.

The offerings to be made to Lord Shiva during the four quarters of the night are as follows:

Time   Muhurat         Offerings

First Quarter  21:24 to 00:35           Til (Sesame Seeds), Jav, Lotus, Belvapatra

Second Quarter        21:24 to 00:35           Fruit of Vijora, Lemon, Kheer

Third Quarter            00:35 to 03:46           Til, Wheat, Malpua, Pomegranate, Kapur

Fourth Quarter          03:46 to 06:56           Udadh dhal (white lentils), Jav, Moong, Shankhpushpi leaves, Belva-patra and Pakodas (fries) of Udadh Benefits of Worshiping Lord Shiva On Maha Shivaratri:

  • One can attain absolute success in his/her without any doubt.
  • Lord Shiva is so innocent that whatever you’ll wish from your pure heart & devotion, he will bless.
  • One becomes super knowledgeable by lighting a lamp on Mahashivratri.
  • If honey, ghee and sugar cane are offered to Lord Shiva, wealth can be gained.
  • After Lord Shiva’s bathing with curd, you can buy vehicles.
  • Over and above, worshipping Lord Shiva & Goddess Parvati with full devotion & faith can definitely give you some unmatchable benefits.

Maha Shivratri

Maha Shivratri is one of the important and biggest Hindu festivals dedicated to Lord Shiva, a deity popularly associated with death and destruction.

The day commemorates the union of Shiva and Parvati.

Every year, Maha Shivratri is observed by Hindus across the nation with ultimate fun and enthusiasm.

Also known as Padmarajarathri or “The Special Night of Shiva’‘, the devotees worship Lord Shiva on this day, observe a strict fast and perform various religious activities to dispel darkness from their life.

The festival of Maha Shivaratri  has great significance in Hindu mythologies. Find below all the important details about the Maha Shivaratri story and celebrations in India.

Maha Shivaratri  Date

Maha Shivaratri is a grand festival in India that celebrates the union of Shiva and Shakti. It falls in the month of Phalgun according to the Hindu calendar, which may come in February or March.

This year in , the festival will be observed on the 18th of February.

Why is Shivaratri Celebrated?

Do you want to know the Maha Shivaratri story? Several myths and beliefs are associated with Maha Shivratri celebrations.

Most Hindus believe that Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati united by marrying on this day.

People in North India celebrate the day as the wedding anniversary of Shiva and Shakti. Shia is said to have entered into deep thought after the death of Sati.

Later, Sati reincarnated as Parvati and got married to Shiva.

Another story revolves around the great night of Shiva when Lord Shiva consumed poison produced during Samundra Manthan, or the churning of the ocean, as the poison was so powerful to destroy the whole world.

Due to this, his throat turned blue, and he started being known as “Neelkantha,” i.e. someone with a blue throat.

Another popular story says that on this night, Lord Shiva performed the Tandava, a cosmic dance that leads to destruction.

One story revolves around a great devotee of Lord Shiva who unknowingly dropped thousands of Bel Tree leaves on Shiva’s linga and pleased Lord Shiva with his devotion.


What to Do on Mahashivratri?

People celebrate Maha Shivaratri  with great excitement and passion. Both men and women keep a strict fast for a whole day to get a good life partner like Shiva and Parvati, while married women observe the fast for the well-being of their husbands.

The scientific reason for fasting on Shivaratri is that it gives the body a break from hard-to-digest foods, further improving the digestive system.

It also helps us in getting a relaxed state of mind.

People get dressed and visit Shiva temples after an early morning bath to worship Lord Shiva by pouring water, milk, honey, flowers, sweets and curd on Shiva linga.

On this day, you can witness a giant crowned in temples which itself sets magnificent views.

The offerings take place the entire day and night by devotees to please him.

All the temples of Lord Shiva are adorned beautifully with garlands and flowers.

You can hear Shivratri Bhajans all day and night in temples.

The festival of Maha Shivratri is celebrated across different regions in India.

People in Madhya Pradesh take a holy dip near Khajuraho, while in West Bengal, 4 Shiva lingams are made and worshipped by people throughout the night.

5 Things to Know About Maha Shivaratri

Read on to learn a few interesting facts about the exuberant night of Maha Shivaratri. Take a look:

1. The “Great Night of Shiva”

Maha Shivaratri is known as the “Great night of Lord Shiva”, which is observed by devotees in the month of Phalgun.

People recite prayers, keep fast and perform meditation to please lord Shiva who is known as the “god of transformation”.

It celebrates the union of Shiva and Shakti.

2. Tandava – The Cosmic Dance of Transformation

The celebration of the festival commemorates the cosmic dance of Shiva, i.e. “Tandava”, popularly known as the “Dance of Destruction”. Shiva, also known as “Nataraja”, dances in “Rudra Tandava” in an aura of fire, leading to building three stages of this universe: creation, preservation and destruction.

3. Devotees Take Cold Water Showers

On this day, devotees across the country start their day by taking a shower with cold water.

According to studies, it helps increase alertness, improve overall oxygen supply across the body, and provide the required energy and freshness for the whole day. They also keep a fast for the whole day.

4. Mentioned in Several Puranas

The festival of Maha Shivaratri is included in various Puranas, especially the Skanda Purana, Linga Purana and Padma Purana.

5. ‘Nishita Kaal’ or Midnight

Nishita Kaal or the time when Lord Shiva appeared as Shiva Linga on earth is the most important time for worshipping him.

Devotees take a bath, dress nicely and wear clean clothes while performing the Puja.

Maha Shivaratri Significance

The festival of Maha Shivaratri  signifies love, passion and devotion in married lives. The day commemorates the amalgamation of two powerful forces in the universe – Lord Shiva and Parvati.

It is celebrated across the country by Hindu devotees and rituals can differ.

It is said that on this day, Shiva blesses devotees with good luck and prosperity.


Maha Shivaratri marks the celebration of the union of Lord Shiva and Parvati.

It is the most crucial of the twelve Shivratris celebrated in a year.

The important festival in Hindu culture signifies overcoming darkness and evils in life.

On this day, people go to temples, worship Shiva and wish for a happy life.

We wish you all A very Happy Maha Shivaratri to all.

Maha Shivratri

Maha Shivratri : On the day of Shivratri, after finishing the morning rituals/prayers, devotees should take a resolution (Sankalp) to observe a fast for the whole day on Shivratri and to have food the next day.

Maha Shivaratri is being celebrated on February 18 across India this year.

This is the festival of the convergence of Shiva and Shakti.

Chaturdashi Tithi during Krishna Paksha in the month of Magha is known as Maha Shivaratri, according to Panchang.

It is believed that Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati got married on this day.

Maha Shivratri : Key Shiva Mantras

1. Shiva Moola Mantra
ॐ नमः शिवाय॥
Om Namah Shivaya॥

2. Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra
ॐ त्र्यम्बकं यजामहे सुगन्धिं पुष्टिवर्धनम्
उर्वारुकमिव बन्धनान् मृत्योर्मुक्षीय मामृतात्॥
Om Tryambakam Yajamahe Sugandhim Pushti-Vardhanam
Urvarukamiva Bandhanan Mrityormukshiya Mamritat॥

3. Rudra Gayatri Mantra
ॐ तत्पुरुषाय विद्महे महादेवाय धीमहि
तन्नो रुद्रः प्रचोदयात्॥
Om Tatpurushaya Vidmahe Mahadevaya Dhimahi
Tanno Rudrah Prachodayat॥

Maha Shivratri

There is an unknown and mysterious energy that is driving all of us.

Scientists have not been able to give it a name, yet.

However, saints of yore have called this unknown energy Shiva.

Shiva is the energy believed to make every living being alive.

We are able to breathe, eat, walk and carry out our day-to-day activities because of Shiva.

Not only does this energy drive living beings, but it also resides in non-living things – as their energy.

Shiva, thus, drives existence.


In the daily hustle and bustle of life, we forget our source of energy – that which is running us.

Mahashivratri is a festival to remember and to take our awareness to the basis of our existence: Shiva.

But, why is Shivratri celebrated? There is more than one Mahashivaratri story surrounding this occasion.

Here are a few:

  • One is that Lord Shiva married Parvati on this day. So, it is a celebration of this sacred union.
  • Another is that when the Gods and demons churned the ocean together to obtain ambrosia that lay in its depths, a pot of poison emerged. Lord Shiva consumed this poison, saving both the Gods and mankind. The poison lodged in the Lord’s throat, turning him blue. To honor the savior of the world, Shivratri is celebrated.
  • One more legend is that as Goddess Ganga descended from heaven in full force, Lord Shiva caught her in his matted locks, and released her on to Earth as several streams. This prevented destruction on Earth. As a tribute to Him, the Shivalinga is bathed on this auspicious night.
  • Also, it is believed that the formless God Sadashiv appeared in the form of a Lingodhbhav Moorthi at midnight. Hence, people stay awake all night, offering prayers to the God.

These are some of the stories that can possibly answer why we celebrate Shivratri.

But, what do we do during Shivratri?


Mahashivratri is the day to honor and celebrate Lord Shiva—honor life and celebrate existence.

Most people spend the day of Mahashivratri in prayer, meditation and celebration.

Here is a list of what to do on Mahashivratri:

  1. Observe Fasting
  2. Meditate
  3. Chant Om Namah Shivaya
  4. Attend Mahashivratri Puja or Rudra Puja
  5. Worship the Shivalinga

(1) Observe fasting on the day of Mahashivratri

Fasting detoxifies the body and curtails the restlessness of the mind.

A mind that is not restless slips into meditation easily.

Therefore, fasting on Mahashivratri serves to detoxify the body and aid meditation.

It is recommended to fast with fruits or foods that are easily digestible.

Learn more about Mahashivratri fasting guidelines.

(2) Meditate on Mahashivratri

The position of the constellations on the night of Mahashivratri is considered very auspicious for meditation.

So, it is advisable for people to keep awake and meditate on Shivaratri.
In ancient times, people used to say, ‘If you cannot meditate every day, do so for at least one day in a year – on Shivratri day – keep awake and do meditation’.

Wake the Divinity that is deep within you

The Divinity is within you, let it wake up!

(3) Chant Om Namah Shivaya

  • Om Namah Shivaya’ is the perfect mantra to chant on Mahashivratri, as it immediately elevates your energy.
  • Om’, in the mantra, refers to the sound of the universe.

It means peace and love.

The five letters, ‘Na’, ‘Ma’, ‘Shi’, ‘Va’, ‘Ya’ in ‘Namah Shivaya indicate the five elements – Earth, Water, Fire, Air, and Ether.

  • Chanting ‘Om Namah Shivaya’ harmonizes the five elements of the universe.
  • When there is peace, love and harmony in all the five elements, then there is bliss and joy.
  • Along with OM Namah Shivay Chanting you can chant – Shiv Tandav Stotram and Kaal Bhairav Ashtakam

(4) Attend Mahashivratri Puja or Rudra Puja

Rudra Puja or Mahashivratri Puja is a special ceremony performed to honor Lord Shiva. It involves singing special Vedic mantras accompanied by certain rituals.

Rudra Puja brings positivity and purity to the environment and transforms negative emotions. Participating in the Puja and listening to the chants helps the mind slip into meditation effortlessly.
Meditate to the chants of the auspicious Mahashivratri Puja

(5) Worship the Shivalinga

The Shivalinga is a symbolic representation of the formless Shiva.

Worshipping the Shivalinga includes offering ‘Bel Patra’ (leaves of the bel tree) to it.

Offering ‘Bel Patra represents offering three aspects of your being – rajas (the aspect of you that is responsible for activity), tamas (the aspect of you that brings inertia) and sattva (the aspect of you that brings positivity, peace, and creativity).

These three aspects affect your mind and actions. Surrendering the three to the Divine brings peace and freedom.


Mahashivratri : It is one of the most auspicious festivals of Hindus which is celebrated by devotees with lots of fervor and aplomb.

This year it is celebrated on 18 February (Saturday). , the festival falls on the Chaturdashi Tithi during Krishna Paksha in the month of Magha.

On this day devotees do fasting, rudra abhishek, and worship Lord Shiva to seek his blessings.

It is said that Shivratri is the amalgamation of two strong forces in the universe Shiva and Goddess Shakti.

Shiva is known as the God of death and Goddess Shakti as a power that vanishes evil powers.

Mahashivratri: History

According to the Puranas, several stories and legends describe the origin of the Shivratri festival.

One story says, during Samudra Manthan, a pot emerged from the ocean which consists of poison.

All the Gods and demons were terrified that this will destroy the entire world and so, Gods ran to Lord Shiva for help.

To protect the entire world from the evil effects, Shiva drank the entire poison and held it in his throat instead of swallowing it.

Due to this, his throat becomes blue and so he is also known as Neelakantha.

Shivratri is celebrated as an event due to which Shiva saved the world.

Another story that is mentioned in the Shiv Purana is:

Once upon a time Brahma and Vishnu were fighting among themselves that who is superior among the two.

Other Gods were terrified and so they went to Lord Shiva to intervene in the war.

To make them realise the futility of their fight, Shiva took the form of a massive fire that spread across the length of the universe.

By seeing the magnitude, both the Gods decided to find one end each to establish supremacy over the other.

So, for this Brahma assumed the form of a swan and went upwards on the other hand Vishnu assumed as Varaha and went into the earth.

But the fire has no limit and they searched thousands of miles but couldn’t find the end.

On the journey upwards, Brahma came across a Ketaki flower.

He asked Ketaki from where she had come; Ketaki replied that she had been placed at the top of the fiery column as an offering.

Brahma could not find the upper limit and took the flower as a witness and came.

At this, Shiva revealed the true form and became angry.

Brahma did not find the uppermost limit and told lie. So, he was punished by Shiva for telling a lie and cursed that no one will pray for him.

Even the Ketaki flower was banned from being used as an offering for any worship.

Since it was on the 14th day in the dark half month of Phalguna when Shiva first manifested himself in the form of a Linga, the day is especially auspicious and is celebrated as Maha Shivratri.

Worshipping Shiva on this day is believed to bestow one with happiness and prosperity.

According to another popular legend, Shiva granted Goddess Paravati, an avatar of Shakti, and wished to marry him as he was impressed by her devotion.

On a moonless night, the goddess observed fast for his good health after their marriage.

Today also, this ritual is followed by an Indian woman who prays for the long life of their husband.

Maha Shivratri is observed in several states of India like Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, and Bihar.

It is celebrated as the anniversary of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati.

It is also celebrated as a day when Shiva saved the world from the pot of poison.

And also, this day marks when Brahma and Vishnu got involved in an argument about their supremacy.

Mahashivratri: Significance

Followers and devotees of Shiva observe special puja and perform fast in several temples of Shiva across the world.

They offer milk to the Shivaling and pray for moksha. Several devotees pray the whole night and chant mantras in praise of Lord Shiva.

Women pray to be blessed with a good husband and a happy married life.

On this day, in various temples fairs and cultural programs are organized.

It is also believed that those people who perform puja, fast, and offer prayers to Lord Shiva are blessed with good luck.


One of the most revered festivals in India, Maha Shivratri is dedicated to the worship of Lord Shiva.

Maha Shivratri means the great night of Lord Shiva and is celebrated annually towards the end of winters, generally in February.

How is it celebrated?
On the day of Maha Shivratri, people fast the whole day and night. Almost all temples dedicated to Lord Shiva see a huge congregation of devotees from the early hours of the morning.

Pujas are performed before the lingam (idol), after which people take a bath in the holy water of the Ganga river.

Devotees also being a pot full of Ganga water that they offer to the lingam.

According to the Shiva Purana, there are six steps to the Maha Shivratri puja.

The first is taking bath in Ganga, followed by the bathing of the lingam in the Ganga water, and then with milk and honey.

After this, vermilion paste is applied to the lingam and fruits and flowers are offered to the idol.

The ritual of lighting a diya near the idol is a symbolic gesture for achieving more knowledge.

Afterwards, betel leaves are offered to the lingam.

Devotees also apply holy ash to their foreheads.

This represents cleanliness, penance and spiritual knowledge.

They also wear garlands made of the seeds of Rudraksha tree.

Festivities in Varanasi
Varanasi is considered the city of Lord Shiva, so Maha Shivaratri – the great night of Lord Shiva’s wedding – is a very important festival here.

Maha Shivaratri falls on the 14th day of the dark fortnight of the Phalgun month (February/March), according to the Hindu calendar.

All the Shiva temples of Varanasi are beautifully decorated for the occasion and a marriage procession of Lord Shiva is taken out starting from Mahamrityunjaya Temple in Daranagar to the Vishwanath Temple.

A big fair is held on the occasion.

On this day, devotees visit Shiva temples to offer prayers and the worship can continue well into the night.

People offer flowers, coconut, bhang, dhatura, fruits etc.,

to shivlings and idols.

Myths and Legends
The origin of the festival has an interesting history.

Legend has it that both gods and demons were once churning the ocean of milk to get amrita (water of immortality).

While doing so, they came across a deadly poison which exploded into fumes that threatened to envelop the whole universe.

The gods then went to Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu for help, but they couldn’t do anything.

At last, they went to Lord Shiva to ask for help, who swallowed the poison in order to save the universe.

This left a deep blue mark on his throat.

A popular belief celebrates this incident at the festival.

The Celebration of Mahashivratri – How to Perform the Puja?

Mahashivratri is celebrated all over the country and is said to be one of the most auspicious day which is totally dedicated to Lord Shiva or popularly it is termed as the night of Lord Shiva.

This year on 24th, February all over India this day will be celebrated by his devotees and will offer prayer to Lord Shiva.

The holy night of Shivratri is actually observed just a night before the “Amavasya’’ which according to the Hindu calendar is the month of February or March.

This Puja is been celebrated from long ago in this country.

Lord Shiva is considered as the God of destruction as well as the creator of the entire universe.

Requirements for Shivratri Puja

As we know that In Hindu culture this puja is considered to be an auspicious one and more or less every women performs this puja on this day. So, sometimes it becomes difficult to buy the Puja Samagri physically going to a market.

The main items which you need while performing the puja include vermillion, turmeric powder (haldi), holy perfume or what we called as Aguru, Vibhuti (ash that is made up of cow dung), Rudraksha Mala, Akshata or uncooked rice and a number of Bilwa or Bael leaves.

Incense sticks, some fresh flowers and other essentials required for the puja.

Prayers for the Puja

Generally, the devotees chant the mantra “Om Namah Shivaya’ while performing the puja.

Fasting on Shivratri

Fasting on Shivratri is considered a very old ritual to be followed by the devotees this day.

They either can choose a strict rule of fasting or mild way of fasting.

Those who are following the strict rule of fasting must stay aloof from food and water during the fasting period.

While mild fasting means you can drink milk or water.

Material required for the Sacred Bath

Various materials are needed to perform the holy bath to Shiva Linga that should include milk, curd, ghee, flowers, rose water, honey, holy water.

But the elements used in the Abhishek of the Shiva Linga are divided into four prahars.

The first prahar includes the holy water, the second includes the curd, and the third includes ghee while the fourth one includes honey.

How to perform Shivratri Puja?

  • Wake up early in the morning and take a bath
  • Apply a touch of ash on your forehead.
  • Light up incense sticks and lamp in front of the Shiva idol.
  • Offer Bilva leaves to Lord Shiva
  • Fast all the day
  • In the evening also bath in holy water
  • Bathe the Shivling with holy water and offer flowers and Bilva leaves

12 Interesting facts about “Maha Shivratri” that you need to know!

Maha Shivratri is dedicated to Lord Shiva.

It is one of the biggest festivals of Hindus who worship Lord Shiva.
This day is observed on the 13th night/14th day of the 11th Hindu month of Phalguna or Maagh every year.
Some interesting facts are mentioned as follows:
1. Maha Shivaratri celebrates the union of Shiva & Shakti. They’re the two greatest forces of the Universe.
2. On this day Shiva married Parvati.
3. The term Maha Shivaratri means ‘Great Night of Shiva’.
4. It was on this night that Lord Shiva performed the dance Tandava, the furious dance of all creation & destruction in the Universe.
5. Married women pray for their husband’s welfare.
6. It’s a special night for unmarried women, who want a husband like Lord Shiva because he is the ideal companion.
7. Maha Shivaratri rituals include pujas, abhisheka, fasting and staying awake at night with prayers and meditations.
8. Some people take food only once while others follow a fruit and milk diet.
9. Special fairs and events are organized at major Shiva temples including Somnath Temple in Gujarat, Mahakaleshwar Temple in Ujjain, and Kashi Vishvanath Temple in Varanasi.
10. Bathing the Shivalinga is a major ritual on Maha Shivaratri. It is performed using Sugar, Butter, Milk, Honey, black sesame seeds, Ganga Jal etc. After that, fresh flowers and fruits are offered. Bathing the Shivalinga is done using Jal Abhishek patra.

night, then you can have control over the negative thoughts like greed, anger, lust etc.
12. In Kashmir, the festival is called Har-ratri & is celebrated by Shiva devotees in the region.

The devotees of Lord Shiva are all set to celebrate the Maha Shivratri on Tuesday (Feb 13).


Mahashivratri : Shubh Muhurat & Puja Samagri

e, Mahashivaratri will be celebrated on Saturday, 18 February  and here are the timings or Shubh Muhurat:

  • Chaturdashi Tithi- from 08:02 PM on 18 February  to 4:18 PM on 19 February
  • Ratri First Prahar Puja Timing- 06:13 PM to 09:24 PM on 19 February
  • Ratri Second Prahar Puja Timing- 09:24 PM to 12:35 AM, 19 February
  • Ratri Third Prahar Puja Timing- 12:35 AM to 03:46 AM, 19 February
  • Ratri Fourth Prahar Puja Timing- 03:46 AM to 06:56 AM, 19 February
  • Nishita Kaal Puja Timing- 12:09 AM to 01:00 AM, 19 February

Here are a few items that are used mainly for worshipping and performing puja on the day of Mahashivratri

  • Vermilion for applying on Shivalingam after the bath.
  • Milk, water and bel leaves signify soul purification.
  • Various fruits are donated during worshipping Lord Shiva that symbolize the gratification of wishes and longevity
  • Incense sticks signify prosperity
  • betel leaves signify satisfaction of earthly desires
  • Lightning lamps signifies the acquisition of wisdom and knowledge.
  • Vibhuti or sacred ash
  • Other items for the puja are flowers, rose water, yogurt, ghee, honey, sugar, water and sandalwood.


Mahashivratri : Mantras

One of the common mantras chanted during the Mahashivratri Puja include Om Namah Shivaya.

Other mantras include shouPanchakshari Shiva Mantra, Rudra Mantra, Rudra Gayatri Mantra and Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra.

These five Shiva mantras are believed to transform our life.

Mahashivratri : Rituals and Puja Vidhi

  1. Devotees should eat single meal before Mahashivaratri fasting to ensure any undigested food is not left in the digestion system on the fasting day.
  2. You need to get up early and take a bath. You can add black sesame seeds for a holy bath and it is believed that the water purifies the body and the soul.
  3. After taking bath devotees should take Sankalp that they will observe full day fast and break the fast on the next day.
  4. Devotees have to abstain from all type of food during the fasting. They can consume only fruits and milk during the day time.
  5. Devotees should take second bath in the evening before worshipping Shiva or visiting temple.
  6. Shiva Puja is generally performed during the night. Shivaratri Puja can be performed one time or four times during the night.
  7. People can use milk, rose water, sandalwood paste, yogurt, honey, Ghee, sugar and the water for Abhishek. Devotees can use water for Abhishek during first Prahar, curd during second Prahar, Ghee during third Prahar and honey during fourth Prahar apart from other materials.
  8. After the Abhishek, Shiva Linga is adorned with the garland made of Bilva leaves since it is believed that these leaves cool down Lord Shiva.
  9. Then Chandan or Kumkum is applied to the Shiva Linga, followed by lighting lamp and Dhupa. The other items adorned on Lord Shiva include flower of Madar and Vibhuti.
  10. People can break the fast next day after taking a bath. The best time to break the fast is between sunrise and before the end of Chaturdashi Tithi to get maximum benefit of the Vrat.

Maha Shivratri

Maha Shivratri Shubh Muhurat: While there are many legends behind Maha Shivratri, the most significant one is that on this day, Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati got married.

On this day, their holy union is celebrated.

Maha Shivratri : The auspicious occasion of Maha Shivratri is here – it will be observed tomorrow (February 18) across the country.

One of the most significant festivals for Hindus, this is the day when devotees offer their prayers to Lord Shiva and ask for his blessings.

While there are many legends behind Maha Shivratri, the most significant one is that on this day, Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati got married.

Married women fast on this day for a happy marriage while many unmarried women observe the fast, praying for a husband like Lord Shiva.

Let’s check out the puja date, timings, vidhi, and samagri you need tomorrow.

Maha Shivratri : Puja Samagri

On Maha Shivratri, devotees pray to Lord Shiva for the fulfillment of their desires.

Here is a list of Puja samagri that one needs on Maha Shivratri:

  • Vermilion
  • Milk, water and bel leaves
  • Fruits in prasad
  • Betel leaves
  • Lamp
  • Incense sticks
  • Vibhuti – sacred ash made using dried cow dung, also called Bhasm
  • Flowers
  • Rose water
  • Yoghurt, ghee, and honey
  • Sugar
  • Sandalwood
  • Ganga Jal

Maha Shivratri : Puja Vidhi

before observing the Shivaratri Vrat, most likely on Trayodashi, devotees should eat only one time.

On the day of Shivaratri, after finishing morning rituals devotees should take Sankalp to observe a full-day fast and to take food the next day.

On Shivaratri, devotees should take bath for the second time in the evening before doing Shiva Puja or visiting the temple.

Shiva Puja should be done during the night and devotees should break the fast the next day after taking bath.

Out of the 12 Shivratris observed in any given year, Maha Shivratri is considered especially auspicious, as it is supposed to be the night of convergence of Shiva and Shakti, which in essence means the male and feminine energies, that keep the world in balance.

Shiva and Shakti are revered as the embodiment of love, power, and oneness.

Maha Shivratri: Significance and history behind the festival

Maha Shivaratri, which is considered one of the most auspicious festivals, is celebrated annually with much fervour and excitement across Nepal.

This occasion, the literal translation of which is ‘the great night of Shiva’, will be celebrated on March 1 this year.

It’s believed that while there is a Shivaratri every lunisolar month of the Hindu calendar, the Maha Shivaratri, happens only once every year, in February/March, when winter ends and spring & summer begin.

Out of the 12 Shivaratris observed in any given year, Maha Shivaratri is considered especially auspicious, as it is supposed to be the night of convergence of Shiva and Shakti, which in essence means the male and feminine energies that keep the world in balance.

Shiva and Shakti are revered as the embodiment of love, power, and oneness.

There are different legends throughout history that describe the significance of Maha Shivaratri.

One of them claims that Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati tied the knot on this day. Purusha (mindfulness) is embodied by Lord Shiva, whilst Prakriti (nature) is embodied by Parvati.

With the union of both consciousness and energy, it facilitates creation.

Another story says, during Samudra Manthan (a mythical event in Hindu literature), a pot emerged from the ocean which consisted of poison.

All the Gods and demons were terrified that this will destroy the entire world and so, Gods went to Lord Shiva for help.

To protect the entire world from the evil effects, Shiva drank the entire poison and held it in his throat instead of swallowing it.

Due to this, his throat became blue and hence he came to be known as ‘Neelakantha’ (‘Neel’ meaning blue, ‘Kantha’ meaning throat).

Maha Shivaratri is observed in several places of Nepal but the festivities of Kathmandu’s Pashupatinath temple is the one that holds the greatest significance.

On this auspicious day, followers and devotees of Shiva fast and special rituals are performed in several temples of Shiva across the world.

They offer milk to the ‘Shivaling’ and pray for ‘moksha’ (eternal liberation).

Several devotees pray the whole night, chanting mantras in praise of Lord Shiva. Besides the celebration of the marriage of Shiva and Shakti, unmarried women pray and perform fasts on the day to wish for a partner as compassionate as Lord Shiva.

On this day, in various temples, fairs and cultural programs are also organized.

It is believed that people who perform puja, fast, and offer prayers to Lord Shiva are blessed with good luck.

Many people also think that Maha Shivaratri fast reminds devotees that pride, ego and falsehood only lead to downfall.

All in all, this is a day when positivity wins over negativity.