Mahashivratri, “The Great Night of Shiva” is the most significant event in India’s spiritual calendar. Mahashivratri, in the month of February-March, is the most spiritually significant of the twelve Shivratris that occur in a year. This festival is celebrated throughout India and is one among the widely celebrated festivals in our country.
It is said that on this auspicious day, the northern hemisphere of the globe is positioned in such a way on this night that a human being experiences a natural rush of energy. This is the sole reason why our ancestors from time unknown have been fasting and have remained awake throughout the night.
The reasons why Shiv Ratri is celebrated are many, time and again few stories have been repeatedly conveyed to us through songs and in form to stories found in old literature books. The story is that,
Lord Shiva is said to have entered intense meditation following Sati’s death. Sati was reborn as Parvati. On the 14th day of the dark fortnight in the month of Phalguna, Mahashivratri honours Shiva and Parvati’s marriage. Shiva is believed to be the Adi Guru, after millennia of meditation, he became completely still one day. Mahashivratri falls on that day. This night is the night of stillness because all movement in him ceased and he remained completely motionless.
Another beautiful story that depicts this auspicious day is that, it is believed that Shiva performed the dance of preservation, creation and destruction on this night. Various times when Shiv performed the Tandava are mentioned in Hindu texts. Shiva is claimed to have conducted the Rudra Tandava to convey his sadness and fury after Sati gave up her life in Daksha’s sacrifice on this day.
Shiva is renowned as the destroyer on the one hand. On the other hand, he is recognised for being the most caring. He’s also recognised as the most generous of the donors.
“Shiva is not a God up there above but a living presence here” – Sadhguru
This night not only celebrates the importance of our culture, but also reminds us to celebrate the human beings as we are and embrace the darkness and emptiness and stillness that lies in each soul that is part of the universe. Wishing everyone a very Happy Maha Shivratri.