Yogis look forward to the great night of Sivarathri because it is the ultimate power-time to experience the infinite grace of Shiva which can transform every aspect of life
By nature, every month, Sivarathri occurs before the New Moon Day (Amavasya). Amavasya being the beginning of the lunar cycle, Sivarathri a day before is the greatest opportunity to receive energy for a new beginning.
Mahasivarathri is not a one-day celebration of the ultimate power Shiva. It is realisation that nothing exists without Shiva and nothing can exist without Shiva. Here Shiva doesn’t belong to any particular religion; it’s the ultimate power (nameless and formless) which is the source of this entire universe. Spiritually speaking, Mahasivarathri isn’t a Hindu festival; it is a day to raise one’s own consciousness to experience divine presence within oneself to easily achieve personal and financial success in the external world by receiving the spiritual abundance within oneself.
One must realise that Shiva isn’t a God with a physical form. Shiva is the power that has created everything in the universe; nothing exists without the presence of this power and hence it is known as ‘Sarvam Sivamayam’. Once we are dead, the power because of which we are alive is no more within us and that divine power is called Shiva. Siddhars have termed it as ‘Jeevan Sivananan’. People have imagined and created many forms to represent & respect Shiva, the ultimate power, but Shiva is the universal force and the cosmic power which is ineffable and unfathomable.
Sivarathri is known so for a purpose; it can never be a Shiv-Jayanthi or Shiv-Navami for a profound reason. Jayanthi or Navami needs a physical form to appear in this physical world, implying an origin or beginning. However, this power, Shiva, has no beginning, neither origin nor ending. At the same time, it is everlasting and never depleting divine power. This energy is in everything and with everyone at every time. Sivarathri is a great opportunity for the entire humanity to experience oneness with the divine.
How does one experience this divine power within?
There are many rituals involved in various traditions of Hinduism and Shaivism; praying to a statue (Moorthy pooja) or to the Linga is a referential representation for the energy. But Mahasivarathri is not a day where you pray to God, chanting mantras and spending sleepless nights. It is not about avoiding sleep but raising one’s own awareness (with your own self effort) about God which we call as ‘witnessing mentality’. You are watching the presence of God within you with full awareness and consciousness which is called as Maha Shivadarshan.
Regardless of the fire within the wood, only dry wood can create fire; wet wood can never make fire. Similarly, on Sivarathri, once you raise the right condition within the body, you can experience oneness with the powerful energy .
Always remember that Mahasivarathri is not a function like a marriage or a birthday that one can celebrate as per one’s choice. It’s not about staying awake without sleep but staying awake with the awareness of God. Here the God is not outside of you, it is within you. This is ‘Shaivism’. In fact, the ultimate truth is Shiva says, “I am not telling you to come where I am to save yourself. Instead, do not go anywhere because I am already within you as your own life energy”. This is the ultimate truth of ‘Saiva Siddhantham’, the wisdom about God and the most profound philosophy of Shaivism.
The fundamental requirement to receive the energy from God on this most powerful day is ‘inner silence’. One may achieve it through daily meditation, and on Sivarathri, it can be achieved just through awareness about God in a serene condition. The divine requires you to raise yourself to divine consciousness through silence. Because silence is God’s only language to communicate with humans. This is called ‘mounam’.
On this day, anybody can experience the philosophy of ‘Sarvam Sivamayam’ by taking the effort to remain in a state of ‘mounam’ with awareness about God. And Shiva will assure you with a magical experience and all the power to bring the positive change you want in life. One has to take effort to experience oneness to live a life full of peace, success & happiness.
Wishing you and your family a new year full of unstoppable success and happiness in every aspect of life.
—Atmayogi Shri Aasaanji Aham Brahmasmi!
Atmayogi Shri Aasaanji is a non-religious, contemporary spiritual master and the founder of the Atmayoga Foundation (Institute for Inner-Science and Self-Transformation)