Today is Maha Shivratri which Hindu celebrates in India and wherever they are living and worship Lord Shiva for his kind gesture. The night of Lord Shiva, the lord of destruction, fondly known by many names that devotees often chant like Bhole Nath, Shankar, Neelkanth, Rudardev, Shambhu, Maheshwar and many more, 1008 names infect. Mahashivratri often falls in moonless February night when Hindus offer special prayer to the Lord Shiva. Shivratri is the night when Lord shiva performed Tandava Nritya on the dance of primordial creation, preservation and destruction. Shivratri is celebrated for three reasons-
1. The absolute formless God, Sadashiv appeared in form “lilgodbhav moorti” exactly at midnight that is why all the devotees keep vigil during the night of Mahahsivratri.
2. Lord Shiva was married to Devi Parvati on the Shivratri.
3. It is also believed that on the Shivratri Lord Shiva become ”Neelkantham” by drinking the poison that emerged during the ocean churn between the deities and demons and save the universe.
Shivratri is very auspsious for women. Unmarried women pray for an ideal husband like Lord Shiva who is spouse of Kali durga and parvati, and married women pray for well being of their husbands.Generally it is believed that whoever utters the name of Lord shiva with pure devotion freed from all the sin and he/she reaches the abode of the Neelkanth and is liberated from the cycle of birth and death.
On the day of Shivratri deevotees keep fast on day long and chant “Om Namah Shivay” and make offering of flowers and incense to the Lord Amidst of temple bells. The fast is broken only the next day’s morning, after the worship.