What is MahaShivratri?
MahaShivratri is the Hindu festival which is celebrated every year on the waning
moon known as Krishan Paksha in the month of Maagha. This festival is mainly
dedicated to Lord Shiva and on this special day Bilva leaves is offered to Lord
Shiva. People on this day used to keep fast for the whole day and night till 12.
On this day many activities of yoga and meditation are performed.
History of MahaShivratri
This festival of MahaShivratri relates to the history in many legends where on
this special day Lord Shiva married to Goddess Parvati for the second time and
on this day goddess parvati also performed penance in night of shivratri for her
husband welfare. So on this day married women pray for their husband life as
this day is also related to husband welfare. Another legend attached to this day
is that lord Shiva has performed various dances along with music, as he is
advised to stay awake at night. Lord Shiva is also known by the name of
neelkantha, where lord Shiva has been requested by the god to have the poison
filled in pot to save the earth. When he drank the poison, the throat of Lord
Shiva has turned blue, which is known as Kantha in Hindi so the name is given to
lord Shiva is Neelkanth. So shivarati festival is also celebrated in this
How MahaShivratri is celebrated
This day is celebrated with full devotion and religious contents. As on this day
women used to keep fast for their husband and pray for their long life. They
used to keep fast for the whole day and take fruits or food after 12. People on
this special day also used to offer leaves to the Lord Shiva. People used to get
up soon early in the morning and take bath in the river Ganga to purify
themselves. After that they used to wear new clothes and went to Shiva temple to
offer milk, water and honey. People used to worship for whole days and night by
performing their special puja and chanting the song Om Namah Shivaya.