Saavan Ka Maheena:
Saavan ka maheena is considered to be the most auspicious month of festivals in India. According to Indian culture, its the best time to worship Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva. Its like a dream come true for every Indian girl, when they dedicate themselves to take part in the rituals during this month.
In different languages
The Northern India relates to it as Saavan ka maheena, whereas the Southern states refer to it as Shravan Maas.
When does it occur?
Shravan Month is the fifth month in a Traditional Hindu Calendar. Shravan Month is also the first month of the Chatur Maas. Chatur Maas is the four holy Hindu months in a calendar year. It starts somewhere in July and ends in November. The exact dates of Chatur Maas are specified in the calendar of that particular year.
- The first month in Chatur maas is Shravan which is dedicated to Lord Shiva, especially the Mondays.
- The second month is Bhadrapad, the month of festivals including Ganesh Chaturthi and Krishna Ashtami.
- Third is the Ashwin month. The important festivals here are Durga Puja and Navratri.
- The fourth and final is the Kartik month where we celebrate Diwali to mark the end of Chatur Maas.
What happens during this?
The three important days of this month are Shravana Mangalvar (Tuesday), Shravana Shukravar (Friday) and Shravana Shanivar (Saturday).
On Tuesdays, the newly wedded women perform Mangala Gauri Vratam dedicating Goddess Mangala Gauri, popularly known as Goddess Parvati Devi. On this day, women prepare an idol with coconut, wheat flour and turmeric. This Vrath is for the long life of their husband and is introduced to a newly married girl by her mother for the first year of her marriage. The same continues for four consecutive years. The remaining four years the girl performs it in her In-laws place. At the end of five years the puja is concluded with Shravana Mangala Gouri Vrata Udyapana.
Another important festival in Saavan ka maheena is Varalakshmi Vratam which falls on a full moon Friday, dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi for health, wealth and prosperity. First, Lord Ganesha is worshipped then the main puja of Varalakshmi Vratam begins. At the end of which, women from the neighborhood are invited for ‘Perantam’ and offered ‘Thamboolam’. The thamboolam consists of fruit, beetle leaves, supari or beetle nut, kumkum packet, turmeric packet, flowers and soaked gram.
Saturdays in Saavan ka maheena are dedicated to Lord Sri Maha Vishnu, particularly Lord Venkateshwara (Lord Balaji).
Shravan Purnima is celebrated as Jandhyala Pournami. On this day, the Brahmins perform Upakarma. During Shravana Purnima, Upakarma (auspicious occasion for Brahmins) is performed in all South Indian states and in some parts of Orissa. In Tamilnadu and Kerala, Upakarma is popularly known as Avani Avittam. All over India, Shravan Purnima is celebrated as Raksha Bandhan or Raakhi Poornima.
It is believed that Lord Shiva, to save the world, drank the poison ‘halahala’ that came out during the Samdura Manthan (churning of the ocean). All the gods in Hindu pantheon had assembled to witness this holy act of Lord Shiva. Therefore, during Saavan ka maheena, water from Ganga is offered to cool Lord Shiva and to alleviate the ill-effects of the poison.
Saavan ka maheena would bring in loads of Good luck, health, wealth, happiness to the girl and her family, so is the belief of all Indians. Therefore, utmost dedication and devotion is the prime necessity to perform each ritual.