Celebrate the creation of the cosmos

Mahashivratri is an ancient festival whose origins are lost to memory, that celebrates the ‘great night of Shiva’, the destroyer in Indian mythology. One legend claims, this was the night Lord Shiva performed the ‘tandav’ – the cosmic dance of creation, preservation and destruction. Another says this was the night Shiva and Parvati were married, representing the union of male and female energies. After a day of ritualistic fasting, self-reflection and chanting, devotees stay awake during the night in honour of Lord Shiva. Religious pilgrimages to temples and shrines associated with Lord Shiva are also undertaken during this period.

Image credits: Carrotmadman6, CC-BY

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