One of the most awaited festivals of the year, Maha Shivaratri is finally here and like always Lord Shiva devotees are gearing up to make the occasion a grand one. On February 24th, devotees will be seen thronging the temples and offering milk, bel leaves and fruits to Lord Shiva. To help you mark the occasion with all norms and ‘muhurat’, here is the ‘vrat vidhi’ and Puja timing.
Vrat Vidhi: According to classical text, on this day, devotees need to take a bath with water and sesame seed. After the bath, they are suggested to wear new clothes for performing the rituals of Puja.
To perform worship, they visit the nearest temple of Lord Shiva and offer water, milk, and honey to Shiva Lingam, while chanting “Om Namah Shivaya”.
Then they are suggested to apply turmeric and vermilion on the Shiva Lingam and can offer a garland of lotus flowers too.
Among all the offerings to the Lingam, Bel leaves are kept on the top.
Then, the devotees sing hymns and prayers along with lighting the incense sticks.
The devotees ring the bell of the temple at last to get the blessings of Lord Shiva.
If fasting, they can eat fruits and drink milk after offering the prayers.
Timing of Puja
The festival is commemorated for one day and one night only on the 14th night of the new moon or Chaturdashi . To mark the occasion, ritual worship of Shiva Linga is done by temple priests every three hours all through the day and night.
Chaturdashi begins at 09.38 Pm on 24th February 2017 and ends at 09:20 PM on 25th February 2017.
The first prahar Puja will be performed between 06:38 pm to 09:45 pm on 24th February 2017. While the auspicious time to perform second prahar Puja has been guessed between 09.45 PM to 00:51 am on 24th February 2017.
The third and fourth prahar Puja will be performed on 25th February, between 00:51 am to 03:57 am and 03:57 am to 07:04 am respectively.