(KNOW ALL ABOUT SHRAVANA MAAS)

Shravana Maas is a month in the Hindu calendar. It is the fifth month of the solar year and the first of the Chaturmas (the Four Holy Months). These four months of Chaturmas are allocated traditionally for devotion, penance and meditation.

 

(NOTE:          This year, Shravana Maas starts on 28 July and continues till 26 August in North India; while in South India and Maharashtra, Shravana Maas starts on 12 August and continues till 9 September)

 

Let’s understand the significance of Shravana Maas in detail:

 

Q:        What is the astrological significance of Shravana Maas?

A:        Shravana month takes its name from the Shravana Nakshatra (Alpha Aquileia constellation also known as the Eagle Star).  ‘Shravana’ in Sanskrit means ‘hearing’. This is the month when one should speak less and hear more; the concentration should be on being a focused listener. Listening is also associated with gaining knowledge. Shravana Nakshatra is also called the ‘Learning Star’. No wonder Shravana Maas starts a day after Guru Purnima! As per Vedic astrology, persons born in Shravana nakshatra gain name and fame in the world.

 

The cluster of three stars of the Shravana Nakshatra represent the three steps taken by Vamana Avatara to conquer the three worlds, in the process humbling the ahamkara (ego) of the great king Bali.

Shravana month begins when Sun moves to the sign Leo.  An important and interesting thing to note is that all the four parts of Shravana nakshatra fall in the sign of Makara (Capricorn) which is ruled by Saturn; while its lord is the Moon.

 

 

Q:        Why is Lord Shiv worshipped in Shravana Maas?

A:        Shravana Maas is associated with the monsoon season – with water; water is associated with the Moon; Moon is associated with the Mann (Mind) and ALL of these are associated with Lord Shiv – the Adi Yogi who how to taught to control the Mind though meditation and Yog. ‘Shiv’ literally means ‘the auspicious one’. Mythologically too, the Samudra Manthan (Churning of Nectar) took place in the month of Shravana. Rishi Markandeya, too, is believed to have perfected the Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra addressed to Lord Shiv during the month of Shravan.

 

Q:        Why is Rudrabhishek so important in the month of Shravana?

A:        It is believed that the Samudra Manthan (Churning of Nectar) took place in the month of Shravana. In the course of churning the Kshirasāgara (the ocean of milk) for Amrita (Nectar), fourteen divine gifts emerged. These included Lakshmi (the Goddess of Wealth), Kaustabha gem, Parijaat (a Divine ever-flowering tree), Kamadhenu (the Wish fulfilling Divine Cow), Kalpavriksha (Wish fulfilling Tree), Airavata (Indra’s Elephant), Shankha (Vishnu’s Conch), etc. The fourteenth gift was Halahal – poison.

While the first 13 gifts were divided between the Asuras and the Devtas, no one was ready to take the Halahal. Shiva chose to consume the poison. The Halahal was held in His throat. This caused a burning sensation. Hence all the Devtas started offering Ganga water to Shiv to soothe the fiery impact of the poison. This continued as a symbolic tradition in the form of pouring water or milk on the Shivling. This is also known as Jal Abhishek or Rudrabhishek.

 

Q:        Why is the Shravana Maas considered so auspicious?

A:        As already stated above, Shravana month marks the beginning of the auspicious period of Chaturmaas. In fact, each day of Shravana Maas is very significant. Many festivals and important days such as Shravana Somvar Vrats, Mangala Gauri Vrat, Vara Lakshmi Vrat, Shravana Putrada Ekadashi, Gayatri Jayanti, Hariyali Teej, Shravani Poornima, Narali Poornima, Raksha Bandhan, Onam, Naga Panchami, Janamashtami, etc. make this month of Shravana so very auspicious.

Just as all Mondays of Shravana month are Shravana Somvars, so also all the Tuesdays of this month are called Mangala Gauri Vrats – the married ladies fast and pray for the long life of their husbands while the unmarried ones pray to be blessed by a good and worthy husband.

 

 

Q:        Why do Kaavadis carry Ganga water in the month of Shravana?

A:        A special sect of Shiv devotees known as Kaanvadias undertake a sort of a pilgrimage known as Kaanvad Yatra – carrying the holy Ganga water in urns or large pots from the river Ganga to the nearby Shiv Temples. Thousands of saffron-clad Kaanvadias carry water from the Ganga in Haridwar, Gangotri or Gaumukh, the glacier from where the Ganga originates and other holy places, like Sultanganj in Bihar, and carry it to their hometowns, where they perform abhishek (pouring of water) of the Shivalings at the local Shiva temples, as a symbol of gratitude and devotion. It is believed that this tradition originated in the Treta Yuga (the Silver Age of the Hindu Mythology) when Lord Rama carried the holy water of river Ganga in a Kaanvad (urn) to offer it to Lord Shiva at Baba Baidyanath Dham which today is in Deoghar district of Jharkhand.

 

Q:        Why are there two different dates marking the beginning of Shravana in India?

A:        A month in the Indian calendar consists of two fortnights – from Poornima (Full Moon) to Amavasya (New Moon) and back. Now, the North Indians follow the Purnimant Calendar; that is their month begins with Poornima or the Full Moon as their calendar always begins with the Shukla Paksha. On the other hand, people in Maharashtra and South India follow the Amavasyant calendar. Their month begins from Amavasya or the New Moon since their calendar begins with Krishna Paksha. Hence there is a difference of a fortnight between the dates of beginning of the Shravana Month in North and South of India.

 

 

Q:        Which articles can be used for performing Abhishek of Lord Shiv or Rudrabhishek?

 

A:        Any of the following 11 items can be used to perform the ritual of Abhishek of Lord Shiv or Rudrabhishek: milk, curd, ghee, honey, sugar/jaggery, Bael leaves/grass, coconut water, fruit juices, Barley water or Ganga Jal.

 

 

 

One can perform Jal Abhishek offering artilces according to one’s zodiac sign viz rashi:

Aries:               Mix jaggery in water and offer it to Lord Shiva every day.

Taurus:            Offer curds to Lord Shiva. This solves your wealth-related problems.

Gemini:           Offer sugarcane juice to the Deity.

Cancer:            Perform Jal Abhishek with sugar mixed in milk. Also, offer flowers with it.

Leo:                 Offer red sandal to the Deity.

Virgo:              You can offer Bhang to the Deity.

Libra:               Offer cow’s ghee or any perfume or fragrant oil.

Scorpio:           Offer honey mixed in water to Lord Shiva.

Sagittarius:      Offer saffron mixed with milk to Lord Shiva.

Capricorn:       Offer til (sesame) oil to the Deity.

Aquarius:         Offer coconut water or mustard oil to Lord Shiva.

Pieces:             Mix saffron in water and offer it to Lord Shiva.

 

MANTRAS FOR RECITATION DURING SHRAVANA:
  • Complete Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra:

|| Aum Haum Jum Sah           Aum Bhur Bhuvaha Swaha

Aum Trayambakam Yajamahe Sugandhim Pushtivardhanam

Urvarukmiva Bandhnaan Mrityor Mukshiya Maamritaat

Aum Swaha Bhuvah Bhuh     Aum Sah Jum Haum Aum ||

|| ॐ हौं जूं सः                        ॐ भूर्भुवः स्वः

ॐ त्र्यम्बकं यजामहे      सुगन्धिं पुष्टिवर्धनम्

उर्वारुकमिव बन्धनान्    मृत्योर्मुक्षीय मामृतात्

ॐ स्वः भुवः भूः         ॐ सः जूं हौं ॐ ||

This mantra blesses one with a long life, wealth, prosperity and mental peace. Besides it also helps treat all physical ailments, shields against accidental death, unexpected untoward events, etc.

  • Mantra while doing Jal Abhishek of Lord Shiva:

 

Jal Dhaare-Shivam Archet Kailaash Vasate-Dhuvam |

Muchyate-Sarva Baandhamyo-Naatra Karya Vicharnaa ||

जल धारेशिवम् अरचेत कैलाश वसतेधुवंम् |

मुच्यतेसर्व बांधाम्योनात्र कार्य विचारणा ||

  • Mantra for those desirous of getting married:

 

|| Hey Gauri Shankra Ardhangini Yatha Tawam Shanker Priya

Tatha Ma Kuru Kalyani Kanta Kantam Sudur Labham ||

|| हे गौरि शंकरार्धांगि यथा त्वं शंकरप्रिया           तथा मां कुरु कल्याणी कान्तकांता सुदुर्लभाम ||

 

  • OM NAMAH SHIVAY – FULL:

Om Namah Shivay, Om Namah Shivay |       Har Har Bhole Namah Shivay ||

Jataadharaay Shiva Jataadharaay |      Har Har Bhole Namah Shivay ||

Chandradharaay Shiva Chandradharay |      Har Har Bhole Namah Shivay ||

Nagendraay Shiva Nagendraay |        Har Har Bhole Namah Shivay ||

Someshwaraay Shiva Someshwaraay |           Har Har Bhole Namah Shivay ||

Gangadharaay Shiva Gangadharaay |            Har Har Bhole Namah Shivay ||

Nandishwaraay Shiva Nandishwaraay |         Har Har Bhole Namah Shivay ||

Om Namah Shivay, Om Namah Shivay |       Har Har Bhole Namah Shivay ||

ओम् नमः शिवाय, ओम् नमः शिवाय |             हर हर भोले नमः शिवाय ||

जटाधराय शिव जटाधराय |      हर हर भोले नमः शिवाय ||

चंद्राधराय शिव चंद्राधराय |       हर हर भोले नमः शिवाय ||

नागेन्द्राय शिव नागेन्द्राय |       हर हर भोले नमः शिवाय ||

सोमेश्वराय शिव सोमेश्वराय |   हर हर भोले नमः शिवाय ||

गंगाधराय शिव गंगाधराय |       हर हर भोले नमः शिवाय ||

नन्दीश्वराय शिव नन्दीश्वराय |             हर हर भोले नमः शिवाय ||

ओम् नमः शिवाय, ओम् नमः शिवाय |             हर हर भोले नमः शिवाय ||

 

 

 

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