Shravan is the fifth month of the Hindi calendar in which Lord Shiva’s devotees fast and pray on Mondays. The story linked to Shravan month fasting is as follows. Once upon a time, gemstones emerged out of the sea, and out of those gemstones was poison, which Lord Shiva swallowed. As poison started sliding down the throat of Lord Shiva, Goddess Parvati clutched his neck to stop the poison from spreading. His throat turned blue, and that is how he got the name Neelkanth. From then onwards, his devotees commit the entire month to him by fasting and praying.
Why is Sawan 2023 Special?
The month of Sawan/Shravan holds great significance in the Hindu religion, being considered the most auspicious period. Notably, worshipping Lord Shiva/Mahadev on Sawan/Shravan Somwar (Monday) brings forth special blessings and advantages. In the Hindu calendar, 2023 will bring a unique occurrence for Sawan Somwar. After a gap of 19 years, this year will offer an extended period of Sawan, encompassing eight Mondays that will span across two months, concluding on August 31.
During the extended Sawan month, devotees eagerly await the upcoming Sawan Somwars, remaining dedicated to their rituals and spiritual practices. The celestial alignment during this sacred period is believed to intensify the spiritual bond between worshipers and Lord Shiva, creating an atmosphere of reverence and deep spirituality.
People strongly believe that those who fast in Shravan Somvar benefit in the following ways:
1. Not only do the hurdles get eliminated by worshipping Lord Shankar on Shravan month Monday by reading Sawan Fast Katha, Shiv Chalisa, and performing Shiv Aarti, but the devotees also receive unique divine grace.
2. People who worship Lord Shiva on Shravan Somvar are said to be favored by this God and have their wishes for marriage or having a baby fulfilled.
3. It has been advised that folks who are having trouble getting married or getting pregnant should fast on the first Monday of Shrawan month. Devotees, who adore Mother Parvati and Lord Shiva, are well-loved by this God.
4. The Shrawan month is so auspicious that making charitable donations this month bear fruit that is comparable to visiting a Jyotirlinga.
5. On this day, people use Bel Patra to worship Lord Shiva because it is thought that Bel-roots Patra’s are where Lord Shiva resides. As a result, this form of worship yields outcomes that can be compared to visiting a temple. Sawan Somvar quickly brings enjoyment, money, luxury, and economic growth.
6. The four Mondays that fall in the month of Shravan are very lucky. Few individuals finish this with 16 Mondays running into December. One of the most significant devotional practices connected to Lord Shiva is the Shravan Shiva Fast. These methods are well known for finding a compatible life partner.
7. Sawan Monday fasting can also be done from the first Monday of the Shravan maas and continued through the 16th Monday. Or it can be stopped on the fourth or fifth Monday of the Sawan month. It will lead to the same advantages as if they had done it every Monday for the entire year.
8. Some individuals fast throughout Shravan Maas. For the entire month, they only eat particular items. During the Shravan Shiva fast, people frequently consume sabudana and fruits. Shravan Shiva fast adherents consume just one meal per day during this month. When fasting, they also consume salt-free cuisine.
9. Women should pay special attention to the Shravan Shiva fast. This fast is observed by both married and single people for various reasons. Typically, single ladies observe the Shravan Somvar fast in an effort to attract suitable spouses. Married women observe this fast in order to pray for their husbands’ long lives.
10. Some medical professionals think that Shravan fasting is beneficial to your health. The digestive system slows down as it starts to rain because sunlight is minimal. Eating food that is relatively simple to digest is a wonderful idea. For this reason, many Hindus observe a strict vegetarian diet throughout this Shravan month. The digestive tract is detoxified through fasting, as well. This acts as a natural deterrent against the water-borne illnesses that are prevalent at this time of year.
11. Hindu ladies pray for their husbands’ long and prosperous lives and they wear red clothing and green and yellow bangles. Additionally, henna tattoos, or Mehendi as it is known locally, are very popular during Sawan mass. This month also brings luck to those who apply Mehendi.
You have to take some precautions while fasting during Sawan mass, which are listed below:
a) Avoid any kind of negative energies
b) Do good deeds
To make Lord Shiva happy during Sawan month, you can chant the following mantra:
ॐ नमः शिवाय
प्रौं ह्रीं ठः
ऊर्ध्व भू फट्
इं क्षं मं औं अं
ॐ पार्वतीपतये नमः
ॐ ह्रीं ह्रौं नमः शिवाय
ॐ नमो भगवते दक्षिणामूर्त्तये मह्यं मेधा प्रयच्छ स्वाहा
ॐ नमः शिवाय शुभं शुभं कुरू कुरू शिवाय नमः ॐ
Mahamrityunjaya Chanting during Sawan month:
ऊं हौं जूं सः। ऊॅ भूः भुवः स्वः ऊॅ त्रयम्बकं यजामहे सुगन्धिं पुष्टिवर्धनम्।
Sawan Month Fast Dates 2023
These are the Sawan month dates:
Start of Shrawan 2023: July 4, 2023 (Tuesday)
End of Shrawan 2023: 31 August 2023
Full Sawan Somwar Calendar 2023
July 10, 2023 (Monday): First Sawan Somwar Fast
July 17, 2023 (Monday): Second Sawan Somwar Fast
July 24, 2023 (Monday): Third Sawan Somwar Fast (Sawan Adhika Maas Somwar)
July 31, 2023 (Monday): Fourth Sawan Somwar Fast (Sawan Adhika Maas Somwar)
August 7, 2023 (Monday): Fifth Sawan Somwar Fast (Sawan Adhika Maas Somwar)
August 14, 2023 (Monday): Sixth Sawan Somwar Fastt (Sawan Adhika Maas Somwar)
August 21, 2023 (Monday): Seventh Sawan Somwar Fast
August 28, 2023 (Monday): Eighth Sawan Somwar Fast
Also, the Marathi Shravan month start date is also the same as mentioned above.
Shravan Somwar Fast Shiva Puja Vidhi: Know how to perform the rituals
You have known about the story and significance behind Shravan Somwar and Sawan’s starting date and fast dates so far. Now, let’s talk about how to perform the rituals–Shravan Puja Vidhi.
a) Wake up at Brahma Muhurta (two hours before sunrise).
b) Take a bath and wear something new and nice.
c) Sit in the lotus position and do dhyana (meditation), then perform Sankalpa (take a pledge that you would devotedly carry out the Sawan Somwar fast).
d) Purify your home with the holy waters and sprinkle Gangajal on your temple or altar to clean it. Then, complete all the Shodshopchar puja preparations.
e) Dhyana: Through meditation, unite your inner self with Mahadev. (It is the most beautiful thing to connect with God.)
f) Spread some Bel Patra or raw rice on the wooden platform or shrine. The Shiva Linga of Lord Shiva’s idol should then be respectfully placed on it then.
g) Padya means to wash the Lord’s feet with water. Perform this ritual with love.
h) Carry out the Arghya process. Arghya means to wash the Lord’s face and hands with water.
i) Achaman: After presenting water to God, drink the water.
j) Snana means to give the Lord water for bathing. For doing the Abhishek, one may utilise water, milk, Gangajal, honey, curd, ghee, etc.
k) Vastra: Present the Lord with a clean piece of cloth.
l) Yagnopaveeth: Present the Lord with the revered Janeyu and Akshat.
m) Offer Chandan paste.
n) Offer Vilva leaves, Datura flowers, and white crown flowers.
o) Offer dhoop along with incense sticks.
p) Offer ghee lamps, mustard or sesame oils, or both.
q) Naivedhya: Offer sattvic food preparations.
r) Tabulam: Dakshina, pan supari, coconut, and fruits (cash)
s) Perform the aarti.
t) Circumambulate or do a pradakshina by standing up and turning over your right shoulder.
u) Pushpanjali: Offer flowers and do a pranam.
v) Kshama Prarthana: Confess your regrets to Lord Shiva and seek forgiveness for the errors in your ways.
Shravan Somwar varats tend to please Lord Shiva and bring positivity, prosperity, and other joys in life. You should perform the Shravan Puja Vidhi with proper rituals as penned above. Your main goal should be to make Lord Shiva happy. When Shiva is happy, you get the best results.
During the month of Shrawan, followers from all over the country will have a special chance to deepen their spiritual connection and find solace through their devoted worship of Lord Shiva.