Wednesday, November 2, 2011


Skanda Shashti is a Vrat(Observance) performed  for getting the grace and bliss of Lord Muruga who is called in different names such  as Subramanya,Skanda,Sakthidharan,Arumukhan etc.Among the vratas performed by us 'Shashti Vrat'  is pious,and which is considered as one of the most persuasive for the devotees.
In Tamil Nadu Lord Muruga is given special consideration and attention by the devotees like the Kerala people's     consideration of  Lord Ayyappa.
The main 6 temples of Lord Subramanya which are known as 'Pada Veedu' are in Tamil Nadu, Thiruchendur,Palani,Velimalai  etc.
In Kerala also there are very important and ancient Subramanya temples  like Harippad, Perunna  at Changanassery,Udayanapuram at Vaikom,Cheriyanadu at Chengannur,Payyannur,Ullor at Trivandrum etc.The devotees believe that Lord Muruga does not like his devotees to suffer and he possess much more leniency.The other part of this is that devotees  pierce their cheeks,eyebrows etc with small and large spears during celebrations 'Kavady' processions etc to get his kind attention for mercy and bliss.
Chattambi Swamikal,Sree Narayana Guru,Swamy Parama Hamsa etc gained self realization by chanting 'Bala Subramanya Mantra' and getting his darshan(vision) from which it is evident that  even his 'darshan' is possible if the devotee tries very hard.
                                 "Shadananam Kumkuma Raktha Varnam
                                  Mahaalfutham divya Mayura Vahanam
                                  Rudrasya Soonum Sura Sainya Nadham
                                  Guham Sadaham Saranam Prapadye"
This is a Sree Muruga dhyanam  which can be recited every day.
The Mantra  " Ohm Sara vana Bhava " is very sacred and can be recited without advice from a  'Guru'  which has to be recited without breaking words but has to be spelled as one word like "Ohmsaravanabhava'.This can be chanted as much times  as possible everyday which is very auspicious.
This year's Skanda Shashti was  performed  yesterday 1st November 2011 all over the world  and in Tamil Nadu they   celebrate today as 'Thiru Kalyanam day'.People of Tamil Nadu perform the vrat from the Pradhama(Day after the amavasi) and do the performance continuously for six days by taking the meals only once in a day.
In Kerala observance for two days are performed. On the day prior to Shashti, meals are taken only once( either lunch or  supper) and on shashti day afternoon they eat the food provided from the temple.(You can prepare this in our Homes also)
Usually it would be cooked raw rice and curd.Some people use salt.Some people use pickle also.There are people who omit the dinner but some people eat as usual for the dinner and some others eat fruits.There is no compulsion but these choices has  to be selected by ourselves for  the aim being to make our mind and body  pure and to be contented with what we have.These kind of observances will force us to think about the poor and needy people around us. There are so many people starving for food  in this world and suffering from several diseases.We should think about them occasionally  and feel thankful to the almighty for providing the ecstatic facilities for us. We have to perform more charity for the betterment of others too.We have to think that there is no need of any arrogance about the facilities and positions we enjoy and  we should avoid irrational words,deeds and telling lies.Our antagonistic actions to certain people  also should be avoided.
Shashti vrat is mostly performed by women but men can also perform it.The main objective of this vrat  is for the benifit of our children.Subramanya is known as 'Deva Sanapathi' which means that he is the supreme commander of the Demi-Gods.More over he is the husband of 'Devasena' ; in that sense also he is Devasenapathi.Another name of Devasena, is 'Shashti'.Subramanya Swamy's wife 'Devasena' who is 'Shashti' is on the left side of Subramanya Swamy always.She is very fond of children and grant  them many favours.When a mother perform the  Shashtivrat  'Devi Devasena' and Subramnaya Swamy both will be pleased and bless them.So mothers perform this vrat to live prolifically and for their fecundity.Obviously Lord Subramanya will provide prosperity and good health also.
The Shashti vrat was started by 'Parvathy Devi' who is the mother of Lord  Subramanya The incarnation of Lord  Muruga was to eradicate the demons like Tharakasura and Soora Padmasura who were possessing special powers.When the fight between Soora Padmasura and Subramanya were in progress, the Demon  with his magical power  made Subramanya invisible.The  Devas and Parvathi Devi performed Vrat for the protection of Lord Subramanya.This was on the Shashti day of "Thulam Month' and the same day itself Soora Padmasura was killed.Everybody on hearing the news stopped the vrat and consumed food and drinks for lunch.
On another occasion Subramanya Swamy asked the meaning of 'Ohm' to 'Brahma Deva'. Brahmadeva replied 'Aham Brahmasmi'  but Subramanya was not satisfied with Brahadeva's answer and he tied Brahma Deva with a coir.When Lord Siva came to know about this he explained to Subramanya  that what he did was wrong.He realized his mistake and repenting about that he took the form of  a serpent.For getting him back to the previous form with the advice of Lord Siva Parvathy Devi had to perform Shashti Vrat for 108 times in a period  of  nine years.
Shashti vrat has to be performed for 12 times in a year one each  in every month starting from Vrichikam month(November) to Thulam month(Oct) of next year which will be 'Skanda Shashti Day'.So a series of Shashti vrat of a particular year ceases on the Skanda Shashti Day.The new series of this years Shashti  Vrat will be starting in this month (November ) and will be ending in October 2012.
People with more will power and determination can perform Vrat for Nine years continuously   for total number of  108 times  and that has also to be started   in 'Vrichikam'(November last week).The Shashti  in Vrichikam  will be on 30 Nov 2011 and those who want to perform the vrat for one year and those who want to perform the vrat for Nine years can start it in the last week of November 2011.

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