Maha Shivaratri means ‘The Great Night of Shiva’ which denotes the convergence of Shiva and Shakti. The religious ceremonies take place on the new moon night during Krishna Paksha in the Hindu month of Magha, which coincides with the months of January and February. This is a festival observed in honor of ‘Lord Shiva – The Destroyer’. Shiva was married to Parvati on this day.
Maha Shivaratri Muhurta
Nishita Kaal Puja Time ~~ 24:15+ to 25:06+
Duration ~~ 0 Hours 51 Minutes
On 14th Maha Shivaratri Parana Time ~~ 07:03 to 15:29
Four Ratri Prahar Puja Time
First Prahar ~~ 18:17 to 21:29
Second Prahar ~~ 21:29 to 24:40+
Third Prahar ~~ 24:40+ to 27:52+
Fourth Prahar ~~ 27:52 to 31:03+
Chaturdashi Tithi Begins ~ 22:34 on 13-02-2018
Chaturdashi Tithi Ends ~ 00:46 on 15-02-2018
Maha Shivaratri Fast:
People chant the mantra, ‘Om Namoh Shivaya’- it is said, he who repeatedly utters the mantra during Shivaratri, with perfect devotion and concentration, is freed from all sins.
During Maha Shivaratri, devotees fast throughout the day and stay up all night at a Shiva temple – they offer ‘bael’ leaves and fruits to the Lord and then bathe the Shiva Lingam with water, milk, honey, and sandalwood paste.
After this, the Shiva Lingam is decorated with flowers and garlands. Devotees pledge for self-determination throughout the fasting period to seek blessings of Lord Shiva.
During the night, Shivaratri pujan can be done one time or four times. The night is divided into four Prahar to perform puja four times.
Married women observe a fast and pray to Lord Shiva to bless their husbands with health and success, while young girls pray that he may bless them with good husbands.
Maha Shivaratri Celebration
Maha Shivaratri is celebrated all over India but is celebrated rather elaborately in Ujjain, in Madhya Pradesh. The famous temple of Mahakaleshwar Shiva Lingam, considered to be of prime importance to Hindus, is located in Ujjain.
Also, during Maha Shivaratri, grand celebrations take place at the Shiva Lingam of Matangeshwar, in Khajuraho – it is considered to be the biggest in India and is the only temple in the thousand-year-old Khajuraho temple complex where worship still continues.
People also spell Shivaratri as Shivratri, Sivaratri and Shivarathri.
Wish all of you a very Happy Maha Shivratari!