India is the country of devotion and faith. This is the reason, you will find thousands of temples Gurudwaras and mosques. There are lots of festivals and fairs are celebrated throughout the year in respect of God. Maha Shivaratri is one of them. The term “Shivaratri” means “The Night of Shiva.” Maha Shivaratri is a festival of Hindus which is celebrated across the India as well as in Nepal. The festival is celebrated and devoted to Lord Shiva.
Why It is Celebrated?
There is various mythology behind celebrating the festival of Maha Shivaratri. But the main reason why we celebrate this festival is that it is believed that on this day, Lord Shiva and Maa Parvati got married. And to celebrate that occasion, people celebrate Shivaratri every year. To show their devotion towards Lord Shiva, People do fast on this day.
When It is Celebrated?
As per the Hindi Calendar, Maha Shivaratri is celebrated in the month of Phalgun which lies between the month of February and March. It is the 11th month of the year as per Hindi calendar.
International Shivaratri Festival Mandi
As I mentioned above that Maha Shivaratri is celebrated across the nation. But if you really want to see the real color of this festival, Mandi is the place where you should go. Mandi is one of the beautiful places in Himachal Pradesh that celebrate the Maha Shivaratri in its own way. As there are 81 temples of Lord Siva, it is also called “Choti Kashi” and the “Land of Lord Shiva.”
On the first day of Shivaratri, most of the local citizens go to the famous temple of Boothnath to pray Lord Siva. On this day Shobha Yatra is organized in which hundreds of deities carried in their chariots. As per the old ritual, it is mandatory that every deity who visits Mandi should visit Madho Rai temple first in order to pay respect to Lord Vishnu and then honor the ruler.
Than all deities go to the Bhootnath temple and historical Paddal ground except Deity Kamrunag also called “Bada Dev.” There is a separate story behind that why Kamrunag not goes to the Paddal ground along with other deities and sit in the Tarna Temple.
To Celebrate the Shivaratri, a Shivaratri fair is also held in the Mandi, which is held in the Paddal Ground. This fair is held for 7 days. Traders from various states come with their different products and earn a good amount of money by selling their products. One can enjoy various rides of giant wheel, Columbus and many others.
Main Attractions –
Dance of Chariots of Deities.
Instrumental Competition between devotees of various Deities.
Trading of various items.