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The Importance of Maha Shivratri: The Non-Religious Perspective

The Importance of Maha Shivratri: The Non-Religious Perspective

Article by: bhairavshankar
Written on 2021-03-11T12:01:09+00:00

In the modern perspective, Shiva is a paradox. A force of inevitable destruction, whose dance destroys the universe itself, is also the primordial deity for meditation. Described as a form that is both male and female, Shiva doesn’t display the energy of Brahma, the creator, nor the cleverness of Vishnu, the preserver. Shiva is one who is content, ever meditating, ever calm and aloof to an extent that people sometimes refer to Shiva as Bhola Shankar for Gullible Shiva. Yet for someone who’s so aloof, Shiva is also the most widely known deity in the world as the deity for Gaanja or marijuana.

So while we don’t want to dissuade college students from celebrating this evening with a joint, we do want to delve into why this night was and is an important time to reflect on the mind. Here are some of the interesting things that are associated with Mahashivratri and how they affect the body and mind.

Fasting

Every religion in some form nor other promotes fasting. While it’s an exercise in self-control, fasting also has an interesting effect on the body. Fasting and denying your food for over 21 hours, begins autophagia (Greek for self-devouring), which basically means the body begins to eat itself. While this sounds nasty, it’s actually a function of the cell to regenerate itself. Autophagy is a natural self-repair mechanism programmed within every cell of your body. Once this process begins, cool things happen inside your body:

  1. Your cells replaced damaged components with shiny new ones
  2. It’s a 0 waste process, so all the damaged and useless components of your cells are broken down into useful metabolic resources 
  3. By the 24th hour, your body is good as new. Literally!

Some scientists even point to Autophagy as a cure for medical conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease. (To learn more visit: https://bit.ly/2PVPwW7)

The Linga

One may ask, why is the idol to Shiva a phallic stone? The answer is abound with mythological stories, but the most interesting thing about the linga isn’t the phallic stone, but the representation of the sexual organs of both man and woman. Yes, the woman’s vagina is part of the very same idol. Every linga is placed between the yoni, which is in the shape of the female genitalia. While this can be attributed to the depiction that shiva is both man and woman, or as a symbol of sexual love. Whatever it may be, the fact that the greatest power in the universe is represented by not one gender but by both and by the ones that are undefined is something that deserves a moment of contemplation.

Meditation

Can you fault us for bringing this up? It’s Shiva’s most recognisable state, that of one who is constantly in deep meditation. Every form of meditation in India has Shiva as its masthead, and for a reason. The greatest power in the universe cannot be erratic or confused, that entity needs to be wise, self-contained and aloof. A state which most of us aspire to be, but end up getting distracted by the world around us. Maybe Shiva was wise to this, which is why the remote Himalayas serve as their abode. But you don’t need to find the Himalayas to add meditation into your daily practice. With dhyana’s free app, you can measure your meditation, and allow dhyana to notify you of the best times to meditate. However, you plan to meditate, do so tonight and let the Shiva within you shine through.

The Importance of Maha Shivratri: The Non-Religious Perspective

Article by
Written on 2021-03-11T12:01:09+00:00

In the modern perspective, Shiva is a paradox. A force of inevitable destruction, whose dance destroys the universe itself, is also the primordial deity for meditation. Described as a form that is both male and female, Shiva doesn’t display the energy of Brahma, the creator, nor the cleverness of Vishnu, the preserver. Shiva is one who is content, ever meditating, ever calm and aloof to an extent that people sometimes refer to Shiva as Bhola Shankar for Gullible Shiva. Yet for someone who’s so aloof, Shiva is also the most widely known deity in the world as the deity for Gaanja or marijuana.

So while we don’t want to dissuade college students from celebrating this evening with a joint, we do want to delve into why this night was and is an important time to reflect on the mind. Here are some of the interesting things that are associated with Mahashivratri and how they affect the body and mind.

Fasting

Every religion in some form nor other promotes fasting. While it’s an exercise in self-control, fasting also has an interesting effect on the body. Fasting and denying your food for over 21 hours, begins autophagia (Greek for self-devouring), which basically means the body begins to eat itself. While this sounds nasty, it’s actually a function of the cell to regenerate itself. Autophagy is a natural self-repair mechanism programmed within every cell of your body. Once this process begins, cool things happen inside your body:

  1. Your cells replaced damaged components with shiny new ones
  2. It’s a 0 waste process, so all the damaged and useless components of your cells are broken down into useful metabolic resources 
  3. By the 24th hour, your body is good as new. Literally!

Some scientists even point to Autophagy as a cure for medical conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease. (To learn more visit: https://bit.ly/2PVPwW7)

The Linga

One may ask, why is the idol to Shiva a phallic stone? The answer is abound with mythological stories, but the most interesting thing about the linga isn’t the phallic stone, but the representation of the sexual organs of both man and woman. Yes, the woman’s vagina is part of the very same idol. Every linga is placed between the yoni, which is in the shape of the female genitalia. While this can be attributed to the depiction that shiva is both man and woman, or as a symbol of sexual love. Whatever it may be, the fact that the greatest power in the universe is represented by not one gender but by both and by the ones that are undefined is something that deserves a moment of contemplation.

Meditation

Can you fault us for bringing this up? It’s Shiva’s most recognisable state, that of one who is constantly in deep meditation. Every form of meditation in India has Shiva as its masthead, and for a reason. The greatest power in the universe cannot be erratic or confused, that entity needs to be wise, self-contained and aloof. A state which most of us aspire to be, but end up getting distracted by the world around us. Maybe Shiva was wise to this, which is why the remote Himalayas serve as their abode. But you don’t need to find the Himalayas to add meditation into your daily practice. With dhyana’s free app, you can measure your meditation, and allow dhyana to notify you of the best times to meditate. However, you plan to meditate, do so tonight and let the Shiva within you shine through.

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The Importance of Maha Shivratri: The Non-Religious Perspective

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The Importance of Maha Shivratri: The Non-Religious Perspective

Here are some of the interesting things that are associated with Mahashivratri and how they affect the body and mind.