Importance of Pradosham - Nandhiheswarar & God Siva .

Every month   Hindu Almanac(calender) is divided into two fortnights .Days coming after new moon days( 15 days) is  called Sukla paksa(வளர் பிறை நாட்கள்) & days coming after full  moon day is called Krsna paksa(தேய்பிறை நாட்கள்).Let us call it brighter fortnight & darker fortnight respectively for easy understanding.This , i have given in detail   in  my previous post how each day is called  like"prathama, dwidya  "(Ugadi , The New Year Day for India). The 13 th day in each fortnight is called"trayodasi".This particular day is called "Pradosham" which is an auspicious day for worshipping God  Siva & his aide called "Nandhi Devar " who is  in the form of a bull always facing God  Siva in the Entrance of the temple of God  Siva.The legend is that  Deavas(angels) & Asuras(devil forces ) churned the ocean of milk(பாற்கடல் கடைதல்) as directed by God Vishnu.Saraswathi (Goddess of  Vidya or Education) & Goddess of wealth Mahalaxmi all appeared in it.Later "Devamirdham" came which is a medicine like sweet one, when swallowed , would fetch a  deathless life for the takers.God  Vishnu gave it to Devas neglecting Asuras.They became anger & began to argue with God Vishnu.Vishnu  asked them to continue churning of milk of ocean.This time , heavy poison appeared & it tried to engulf both Devas & Asuras . So all of them ran to God Siva  & requested to protect them.God Siva took all the poison & began to drink it in order to protect them.Now His consort Parvathi stopped the poison in his throat itself before it  entered his stomach.So  whole universe was saved.The day in which God Siva drank the poison, is called "pradhosham" & that time is in between 4.30 pm to 6.00 pm.That day is said to be Saturday.Pradhosham also falls on other week days .Pradosham falling on Saturday is supposed to be very auspicious. While all other Devas had taken  Amrudha,  God Siva consumes poison for the welfare of this universe.He has made  such a sacrifice that is why he is called the king of sacrifice ( Thyagaraja).                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Another legend is that in mount Kailas ( Living place of God Siva & Parvathi ), his chief aide Nandhi Devar or Nandhiheshwar  appealed to Siva to perform a Dance as Siva is an expert in all form of arts(totally 64 arts).God Siva agreed to that.When this news spread,Brahma the creator,Vishnu the protector of all lives & all Devas,Saints & Sidhars assembled there in Mount Kailas to witness this Holy Dance.God Vishnu & Nandhi Devar started to play drums,While Goddess & Rishi Naradha accompanied them in Veena.Every one assembled there became speechless witnessing the dance.Now Nandhi Devar requested Siva to dance in between his horns which was accepted by Siva.Even now devotees used to look in between his two horns of Nandhi Devar on Pradosham day.So in all temples of God Siva this day is celebrated between
4.30 pm to 6.00 pm.On this day one herbal grass(அருகம்புல்) , raw rice with jaggery is offered to Sri.Nandhi Devar.Offering of Bilva to Siva is considered very ideal during this time.Reciting of Devaram,Thiruvasagam,Thiruppalandu & chanting of Sri.Rudram(Yajur Vedha Manthram praising God  Siva) & hearing these holy hymns would fetch us blessing s of God Siva & His consort Parvathi & surerly ward off our past doshas or sins provided if we don't repeat them. Nandhiheswar & Somaskandhar photos taken from  Mega T V(Thanks).                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Unlike in normal days,we should not complete  coming full round during Pradosha time in temples . Normally we would go round the temple prakara starting from left to right  side.On  Pradosham day you should start from Nandhi Devar (looking Siva Linga In between his horns) go round as  normal till you reach near" Sandiheswar" sannidhi, where abishega water from Sivalinga comes out & falls into a small collecting chamber(gomuki).You should not cross this.     You should return back to Nandhi Devar '& worship Siva through his horns.Like this you have to perform three times.After 6 00 pm Naivdyam & Showing of Lighted lamp to Nandhi Devar is performed first & then Pooja to Lord Siva is conducted.After this Siva & Parvathi Devi mounted in a Bull(Nandhi) is taken around the temple(Somaskandhar - Normally either Muruga or Ganesha would sit in between them).Siva & His consort Parvathi Devi used to give their devotees(married persons or இல்லற வாசிகள்)this kind of  pose during their final phase of life. This is told in Peria  Puranam by the great poet Sekkizhar (63 Naayanmar life history).Separate type of Darshan for saints who have renounced this world.You can not have this type if you are a family man.Having darshan of Somaskandhar is a great boon to family people in their final stage .Unless we perform duties of  the married life according to Saiva or Vedic Guide lines  you can't see God.Once you have this type  of dharshan you need not be born in this world.You can avoid rebirth.In other religious paths, only either  heaven or hell is told after their death,if you do good things you can reach heaven & vice versa.In our path obtaining salvation or Moksha(liberation from this world is cleanly told).You can see lot of foreigners coming to Tiruvannamalai temple.Some stay in Sri.Ramana Maharishi's asram & learn meditation.Many learn sanskrit.They also visit Kasi ,Rishikesh & Haridwar. I recently saw in you tube,a foreigner ,after getting "Theetchai"(intiation  & following our path)chanting Vedha mantras perfectly(He gas got a guru & staying here for more than 12 years).Some observe fasting or vradhaa from morning to eveing during pradosham.Nandhiheswar is  considered  the First Guru(ஆதி குரு  .He has the rare privilege of  receiving "upadesa" & learning "Sivagama Sastra" from God Siva himself. So when  you enter  a Siva temple one should get permission from  him for worshipping God.Before leaving temple we should worship "sandiheshwar who is always meditating on God Siva.We should also worship 63 Naayanmars.These are all must.After worshipping,we should  sit silently for few minutes & recite Siva nama, Muruga nama & goddess name which ever you like.Choosing of God's name is left to your choice which you like very much. 


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