Today is Maha Shivaratri (translating to ‘great night of Shiva’) and with the planets perfectly aligned, it's an auspicious day to raise the positive vibrations and intentions of anyone willing and ready to create an inner transformation.
Celebrated on the new moon day in the month of Maagha (Feb/March), in accordance with the Hindu calendar, Maha Shivaratri marks the day Shiva married the goddess Parvati. On this night and day, we honour the God of destruction and so, begin a new cycle of creation.
Destruction in this case, applies to that of ego, falsehood, anger and negativity. Shiva’s role as destroyer is vital to creation and is simply the other side of the coin. To create anything new, we must let go of the old.
At Mauli, we will keep up some of the festival traditions, which begin with an all-day fast (ours will include water, milk, fruit and juice) and end with an all-night chanting vigil. Typically a devotee, would begin the day by bathing before sunrise, when the vibrational energy is at its peak. Purified, they would sit to chant the sacred Hindu mantra, ‘om namo shivaya’ and this would continue as they made their way to the temple. Here they would offer flowers, fruits and sweets and join in the devotional songs, an arti (puja) and the process of worshipping all night. The day may also include yoga to signify a union with the higher self and any other practices that lead to positive change and the formation of a new habit. Above all, it is a day of devotion and of giving oneself to all that Lord Shiva symbolizes.
These observances are said to invoke Shiva’s positive energy and in simple terms, the ‘no pain, no gain’ philosophy symbolizes the value of patience, practice and focus in a world of instant gratification. Whether you choose one element of the above or decide to destroy a negative habit of your own, such as giving up salt for the day, to release stagnant energy, it's a step in the right direction and its positive results will be amplified today. Wishing you every success along your journey.