The magic of Shivaratri is upon us. Every year, on Shivaratri, Pashupathinath Temple prepares itself for this festival to welcome thousands of devotees into the arms of Lord Shiva.
With his untamed passion, his unmatched vengeance and his nomadic lifestyle, Shiva has held a universal fascination. From hundreds of ash-covered sadhus to sari-clad middle aged women, from rebellious teenagers to the occasional blue-eyed foreigners, Shiva has won hearts of everyone.
Shiva, the third god of the Hindu triumvirate, is worshipped as the destroyer. Why do we celebrate Shivaratri? To honour his power to swallow poison but still defy it? To celebrate his union with his wife Parvati? To mark his claim as the ultimate god? The religious scripts cannot pinpoint why we celebrate Shivaratri. Perhaps we worship him today just to rejoice Shiva’s existence.
We will chant his name today, we will build a bonfire in hope to get a glimpse of him, some of us will take a long breaths of his favourite marijuana-laden smoke. In the name of the lord of the lords, today will end.
All Photos: Narayan Maharjan