Author Topic: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010  (Read 5322 times)

SLakshmi

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Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« on: February 09, 2010, 03:21:29 PM »
Dear Devotees,

  how do plan to celebrate maha-sivaratri this friday? Ideally how is it celebrated ...any thoughts?

I have planned to fast and read especially in the evening bhagavan's works. Also a couple of tirupugazh and 'vel vaguppu'.

Nagaraj

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2010, 05:18:41 PM »
Shivarathri always falls on the Chaturdasi day of Krishna (Dark) Paksha or waning phase of the moon. The next day being Amavaasya. I feel its the dilution of the dualness into nothingness (amavasya). On the 14th day there is a small moon presence which is the sense of I - ness after all the austerities performed so long during the Uttaraayana and Dakshinaayana. This great day by staying awake the whole night the I gets merged into the Amavasya.

Amavasya is completely pure without any attributes.

People who long for Liberation do the Giri Pradakshinam on the Amavasya day and people who wish to enjoy the worldly (Loukika) life in their varnaashramas do the Giri Pradakshinam on the Pournami day (full foon day)

Shiva also stands for Pralaya, Death etc... all these events like death, pralaya according to our Shastras are considered as 'Mangalam' or auspicious events. Pralaya is dissolution of the world and merging back into where it came from. similarly on this Shivrathri day the I merges into Itself Siva.

The sound of Damaru in Sivas hand is one of the primordial sounds just like Aum, both sounds if carefully observed will begin with 'hmm...' and end with the same 'hmm...' humming sound from and into silence.

Salutations to Sri Ramana
॥ शांतमात्मनि तिष्ट ॥
Remain quietly in the Self.
~ Vasishta

Subramanian.R

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2010, 06:01:19 PM »
Dear Nagaraj,

Excellent.  The New Moon Day (Amavasya) where the moon is totally
absent, even psychiatric  patients are said to be 'somewhat quiet'.
The moon is mano-karaka, the ruler of the mind.  The Sun is the
Atma-karaka, the ruler of atma. 

Dear SLakshmi,

I am not given to spending a sleepless night.  I tried in the past
but could not succeed.  I plan to read Bhagavan Ramana's
works and Sri Dakshinamurty Stotram and Dasa Sloki of Sri
Sankara, particularly, apart from my routine reading of Sanskrit
and Tamil slokas. 

Arunachala Siva.

ramanaduli

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2010, 08:29:18 PM »
Elders say if you will be awake during shivarathiri, next day you are not supposed to sleep during the day time. We should sleep  nightonly. It depends on our
body's condition. The main point is we should become Shiva. This is only possible when we can merge. But we can pray for His grace. As Bhagavan says
He only can help to merge with Him. When you go to any shiva temple, we can witness 4 kalams abhishekam, and chanting OM NAMASHIVAYA. It is ok when we
are there  being awake while witness the puja and the crowd but after coming home, it is very difficult to control our sleep.


ramanaduli

Nagaraj

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2010, 10:59:22 PM »
Dear I,

I would say, it may not be proper that one stays awake without ones body mind and soul's one-ness. It comes by sadhana. Can one who has not practiced swimming, go to a swimming completion and jump into the waters?

Take for example, muslims, they, every year do the fasting on Ramzan time.

These rituals are not to be blindly followed. They are laid down systematically, not just for one day, one special day like Shiva Raathri. One who follows the Shastras, like observing many other Vrathams like Ekadashi Vratham, Shashti Vratham etc... would have tuned his body, mind so well, that during such a time like Shiva Raathri, one would be able to experience or have Sat Darshanam.

Can we just expect to stay awake, fast whole day? without tuning our body mind and soul? Truly, this is blind belief. But yes, there are some exceptions, where in due to the grace of Bhagavan even a person without any previous Sadhana or even tuning body mind and soul would have Sat Darshanam.

Listen to your heart and consciousness and do what ever you can with utmost love. God does not evaluate Time, He is Akala, Timeless, He does not see how long you are able to stay awake, how many time you are able to chant Om Namah Shivayah. All that is important is how sincere, heartfelt is your prayer. He is melted very easily on a true devotion. Look at Bhagavan, tears used to flow at just hearing some bits about Kannapa Nayanar or any of the 63 Nayanmars.

There is one small story, two yet to become sages meet at Ganges, before they had their bath and finished all their other obulatins, they both discussed both their experiences, and one said, that I have committed so many sins, and I need to chant Sri Rama Nama Japa for 1 crore times to attone my sins. I have not yet been able to complete my japa, the other got surprised and said to him - "What, do you need to chant 1 crore times of Rama Nama to attone your sins? Yes I too have committed sins, but wont just chanting the Name of Rama just once suffice to purify yourself?, Such is the Efficacy of Rama Nama"

This conviction matters!

Salutations to Sri Ramana
« Last Edit: February 09, 2010, 11:06:35 PM by Nagaraj »
॥ शांतमात्मनि तिष्ट ॥
Remain quietly in the Self.
~ Vasishta

Subramanian.R

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2010, 09:00:05 AM »
Dear Ramanaduli,

Yes.  One should not sleep next day during day-time after observing
full night vigil in the previous night.  This should all the more difficult.  I think the best way is to meditate on Siva and read books
of spiritual nature and chanting Siva's names within.  Fasting,
night vigil are all to test our mental strength only.  But one cannot
do it without the required mental make up. 

Arunachala Siva.

SLakshmi

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2010, 09:30:01 AM »
Its true. I think that even the small rituals that we perform at home are just an eye-wash..because since we are these days in a nuclear family set up, we dont follow the prescribed 'acharams' and 'anushtanams' or 'madi' to carry out all the rituals in a proper way. So, I personally just make a sweet or a payasam on all festivals and rituals. I consider my mother's generation probably one of the last to follow the 'madisar' rules and adhere to traditions during festivals. I dont even know how to tie a madisar!

Fasting is something i have failed everytime. This time i am going to test my own will-power and mental toughness as an offering to god!

silentgreen

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2010, 03:54:31 PM »
The Story of King Chitrabhanu

In the Shanti Parva of the Mahabharata, Bhishma, whilst resting on the bed of arrows and discoursing on Dharma, refers to the observance of Maha Shivaratri by King Chitrabhanu. The story goes as follows.

Once upon a time King Chitrabhanu of the Ikshvaku dynasty, who ruled over the whole of Jambudvipa, was observing a fast with his wife, it being the day of Maha Shivaratri. The sage Ashtavakra came on a visit to the court of the king.

The sage asked, "O king! why are you observing a fast today?"

King Chitrabhanu explained why. He had the gift of remembering the incidents of his previous birth.

The king said to the sage: "In my past birth I was a hunter in Varanasi. My name was Suswara. My livelihood was to kill and sell birds and animals. One day I was roaming the forests in search of animals. I was overtaken by the darkness of night. Unable to return home, I climbed a tree for shelter. It happened to be a bael tree. I had shot a deer that day but I had no time to take it home. I bundled it up and tied it to a branch on the tree. As I was tormented by hunger and thirst, I kept awake throughout the night. I shed profuse tears when I thought of my poor wife and children who were starving and anxiously awaiting my return. To pass away the time that night I engaged myself in plucking the bael leaves and dropping them down onto the ground.

"The day dawned. I returned home and sold the deer. I bought some food for myself and for my family. I was about to break my fast when a stranger came to me, begging for food. I served him first and then took my food.

"At the time of death, I saw two messengers of Lord Shiva. They were sent down to conduct my soul to the abode of Lord Shiva. I learnt then for the first time of the great merit I had earned by the unconscious worship of Lord Shiva during the night of Shivaratri. They told me that there was a Lingam at the bottom of the tree. The leaves I dropped fell on the Lingam. My tears which I had shed out of pure sorrow for my family fell onto the Lingam and washed it. And I had fasted all day and all night. Thus did I unconsciously worship the Lord.

"I lived in the abode of the Lord and enjoyed divine bliss for long ages. I am now reborn as Chitrabhanu."

-- Told by Swami Sivananda
Homage to the Universal Being...Om Shanti ... Om Shanti ... Om Shanti ...

Nagaraj

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2010, 07:58:10 AM »
Pusalar, a Brahmin of Tiruninravur strongly desired to build a temple for Lord Shiva, but he did not have the money for it. So, he decided to construct a temple in his heart for Lord Shiva. Mentally he gathered the necessary materials for the purpose. He laid the fooundation stone on an auspicious day. He raised the temple and had even fixed an auspicious day for the installation of the deity in it.

The king of Kanchi, who was also a great devotee of Lord Shiva, had built a magnificent temple. By chance he had also fixed the date which Pusalar had mentally chosen for the installation of the Lord in his temple. The Lord wanted to show the king the superiority of Pusalar's great devotion. So, the Lord appeared in the king's dream and asked him to postpone the installation ceremony in his temple. He said He could no be present for the installation as He was going to attend another installation at the same auspicious time, the would be at the temple constructed by his devote at Tiruninravur.

The King woke up from sleep and was intensely eager meet the devotee mentioned by the Lord and also have a look at the great temple he had built, which he thought would be far superior to his own temple.

The king came to Tiruninravur and searched all over the place for the temple but he could not find any. Then the kind enquired about Pusalar. He found out Pusalar's house and the king fell in full prostration at his feet. Narrating to him the wonderous dream wrought by Shiva he requested to be taken to the new temple built by him. Pusalar's surprise knew no bounds, he was stunned on hearing this. Recovering slowly, he remarked, "sir, I am a pauper. I could build the temple inly in my mind. Blessed am I, thatShiva was pleased to enter His shrine. And indeed you are blessed too with his darshan.

Pusalar performed the installation and consecretion ceremonies a the appointed time and felt that the Lord was firmly seated in his heart, which became a temple.

Ramana says in Upadesa Saaram,

KaayaVaagmaanah KaaryaamUttamam
Pujanam JapasChintanam Kramaat

Ritualistic worship, chanting and meditation are done with the body, voice and the mind; they excel each other in that order.

Salutations to Sri Ramana
॥ शांतमात्मनि तिष्ट ॥
Remain quietly in the Self.
~ Vasishta

Subramanian.R

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2010, 09:12:29 AM »
Dear Nagaraj,

Pusalar Nayanar's story is one of the best in Periya Puranam.
Tiru Jnana Sambandha, Sundaramutry Swamigal, Pusalar
Nayanar and a few others are brahmins in the Periya Puranam
stories.  Manikkavachagar who does not find a place in Periya
Puranam (for reasons unknown to historians), was actually
a priest who functioned as a minister to Pandya King.

Arunachala Siva.   

ramanaduli

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2010, 08:36:34 PM »
By the way, this year according to Tamil Panchangam, There are two shiva Ratris, One is this month and another falls in  next month. Every year Shiva Ratri comes in Magh month krishna paksha thriyodasi. But due to some excess of days, it comes twice.  Some people follow moon calender and some caluculate with sun calender. i.e. chandra masam and sowra masam. But for jnani every night is shiva rathri to worship Shiva and merge with Him. Bhagavan should bless us to remain "Self" on this day.


Ramanaduli

Subramanian.R

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2010, 05:56:47 PM »
Dear Ramanaduli,

Yes.  Actually Sivaratri falls in the month of Makara this year.
It should normally fall in the month of Kumbha.  Hence people
observe it in two different ways.  In Sri Ramanasramam, it is
observed only on 12th Feb 2010.  Sri Ramanasramam's Maha
Sivaratri is our Maha Sivaratri. (In fact, Bhagavan Himself has
said Maasi Sivaratri (Masi = Kumbha) in Sri Arunachala Maahatmyam,
Verse 2.)  For reasons best known to Hindu astrologers, it is observed today. In Bangalore, it is observed today.

Arunachala Siva. 

SLakshmi

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #12 on: February 16, 2010, 03:18:48 PM »
Sir,

This year mahasivaratri was not celebrated in arunachaleswarar temple in february. Instead they are celebrating it in March 13th, 14th. The temple will be opened all night through the night of march 13th..as mahasivaratri is celebrated in the month of maasi and not thai.

It seems chidambaram and kalahasti temple wil also be celebrating sivaratri in march..

[source: http://arunachalagrace.blogspot.com/]


Nagaraj

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Re: Maha Siva Ratri - 2010
« Reply #13 on: February 17, 2010, 12:34:27 AM »
Muruganar used to stay in Palakothu and go into Tiruvannamalai Town every morning to beg for alms. sometimes, he would feel disinclined to undertake this trip into town and, on those days, he simply went without food. One several occasions, Muruganar fasted for an entire day. One of these days happened to be the Shivarathi day, though Muruganar himself was not aware of the fact. The next morning, Bhagavan asked Muruganar to go around the Hill with him. Muruganar set off enthusiastically enough but soon, he starved feeling the effects of of the previous day's starvation. When Bhagavan saw Muruganar's exhaustion, he exclaimed, "Oh! Did you fast yesterday for Shivarathri? See how tired you are now. All right! Now come to he Ashram with me and have a proper meal." Bhagavan took Muruganar to the Ashram and saw to it that he got enough to eat, instructing the attendants to serve Muruganar with particular care. Muruganar was so moved by Bhagavan's solicitude that even after many years he could not talk about this incident without tears in his eyes.

Salutations to Sri Ramana
॥ शांतमात्मनि तिष्ट ॥
Remain quietly in the Self.
~ Vasishta