As Sawan is particularly dedicated to Lord Shiva - Shivratri is regarded to be an auspicious festival for the Hindus. Devotees believe that the day marks the union of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, who represent mindfulness and nature.
Therefore, Shivratri is one of the most significant days associated with Lord Shiva, as per the Hindu community. For the unversed, the literal meaning of Shivaratri is the ‘Night of Shiva’.
According to scriptures, Masik Shivratri is observed every month on the Krishna Paksha Chaturdashi Tithi or the 14th day of the dark fortnight. The one observed in Phalguna month is known as Maha Shivaratri. This year, the Masik Shivaratri will be grandly marked across the country on 26 July.
The Shravana, Krishna Chaturdashi begins on 26 July at 6:46 pm and ends on 27 July at around 9:11 pm.
Puja Vidhi and Mantra
The Masik Shivaratri puja is performed at midnight. It is also known as Nishita Kaal, which begins with performing abhishek (method of worship) for Lord Shiva or the Shiv Lingam.
On this day, devotees offer Gangajal (holy water), honey, vermillion, turmeric powder, milk, curds, ghee, rose water, and bel leaves to the idol. Following this, a special aarti takes place and hymns are sung, and the conch is blown. Prasad is distributed among devotees at the end of the rituals.
To make this day even more special, ardent devotees observe Shivaratri fast. It is believed to be quite auspicious to chant Om Namah Shivay during the fast.
Masik Shivratri is of great significance to Hindus around the world. They consider it to be the most auspicious day to worship Lord Shiva and to seek his blessings for inner peace. Devotees believe that fasting on this day sanctifies the soul and will help them achieve Moksha (salvation).