An admiration festival of Lord Shiva, Maha Shivratri festival is also known as "Shivratri". As per the legends, the Holy night "The Great Night of Shiva", Maha Shivratri is the day when Shiva was married to the goddess Parvati where the festival marks the convergence of Shiva and Shakti; the Goddess of energy. The festival is celebrated on the Krishna Paksha Chaturdashi of Hindu calendar month Maagha per Amavasya-ant month calculation. However; according to the Gregorian schedule, Shivratri is commended on the sixth night of the dim Phalgun i.e.; in the middle of February to March. India's renowned Hindu festival, Maha Shivratri is celebrated every year where the auspicious celebration falls on 17 February this year.
Main Rituals of Maha Shivratri
Dedicated to the Lord Shiva, the festival is celebrated with great enthusiasm by millions of devotees. Thousands of devotees take a holy dip at various pilgrim destinations on this occasion they involved purification, virtue and enlightenment. Maha Shivratri marks the night when Lord Shiva performed the 'Tandava'. On this day, Shiva devotees offer fruits, flowers and observe fast and keep vigil all night. The celebration starts with bathing the lingam with milk, curd, honey, ghee and water. Sandalwood paste is applied on the lingam, incense sticks are burned along with the ghee lamp, Hymns and mantras like "Om Namah Shivaya" are recited and bel leaves on Shiva Linga.
From early morning, devotees form long queues in various temples in India to offer prayers and witness the Rudra Abhishekam of the almighty. At night, the procedures of fasting breaks with saatvik food like sabudana khichdi, bhang, thandai and many more.
Grand Function of Maha Shivratri on 17th February, 2015
The Grand festival, Maha Sankranti is celebrated by Hindu's in varied places (especially India, Mauritius and Nepal). However, to attain a ritual functions in the state of Karnataka, here is the list of some grand places to celebrate Maha Shivratri are Kempfort Shiva Temple, Murudeshwara Shiva Temple, Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple and many more temples of Lord Shiva. The historical Maha Shivratri 2015 celebrations will also be held in Sri Sri Ravi Shankar Bangalore Ashram.