This entry is part 3 of 5 in the series About SMP
No Date Day Śivarātri
1 17 Feb 2015 Tuesday Mahā
2 18 Mar 2015 Wednesday Māsa
3 17 Apr 2015 Friday Māsa
4 16 May 2015 Saturday Māsa
5 14 Jun 2015 Sunday Māsa
6 14 Jul 2015 Tuesday Māsa
7 12 Aug 2015 Wednesday Māsa
8 11 Sep 2015 Friday Māsa
9 11 Oct 2015 Sunday Māsa
10 09 Nov 2015 Monday Māsa
11 05 Apr 2015 Sunday Māsa
12 08 Jan 2016 Friday Māsa
13 07 Feb 2016 Sunday Māsa

In the year 2015-16, there are 13 śivarātri as indicated in the table due to the extra soli-lunar month called adhika māsa. A year of sādhanā requires that the pujā be done not only on the Mahā Śivarātri but also on the māsa śivarātri. Some of you who will learn well will be able to do this sādhanā.

Fasting Requirements

Complete fast during the entire day starting from sunrise till the mahā-dīpa (great lamp) for Lord Śiva is lit at night. Some sādhaka keep complete nirjala (not even water) fast, others take water only, while a few others take water, fruits and milk. But those taking medicines must take food as required – this is allowed in the scriptures.

Dress code for pujā

  1. Male participants have to dress in complete white clothes or silk (yellowish-white)
  2. Dhoti (or pyjama) with kurta and chadar is preferable or
  3. Western clothes like full shirt covering arms and a full trousers
  4. Jeans, even if in white colour are not allowed
  5. Torn garments even if costing a premium from famous designers are not allowed
  6. Women must have their complete body covered and can use western clothes so long as the body and arms are fully covered.
  7. Do not carry leather bags, purse, belt or any other leather items to the temple. You can leave them in the cars that will ferry you to Jageshwar.
  8. Avoid using makeup and perfumes as they may contain material of animal origin. Instead use sandalwood paste or bhasma.
  9. All participants have to cover their heads with turban, sari or a cloth during the pujā. Please do not use hats and golf caps. This is the seat of the guru and the cloth covering the head is the āsana for the Guru. Lord Śiva is the parameṣṭhi guru.

Śivarātri Sādhanā

This Siva sādhanā which is accompanied with fasting and prayers on the kṛṣṇa caturdaśī day every month is called śivarātri sādhanā. Details of this sādhanā are a part of the SMP course.

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