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Pradosham is an auspicious 3-hour period, 1.5 hours before and after the sunset, and is celebrated twice a month on the 13th day of every fortnight. The day is considered ideal for the worship of Lord Shiva and Nandi (bull). When a Pradosham falls on a Monday, it is called as Soma Pradosham.
Soma Pradosham is considered very auspicious for worshipping the Supreme Lord Shiva. The day gets its name from the word “Soma,” which in Sanskrit means crescent moon. Lord Shiva wears the crescent moon as jewelry on his matted hair. Furthermore, Monday is ruled by the Moon, which has a significant effect on your emotions, thoughts, and feelings. Hence, worship of Lord Shiva on Soma Pradosham can calm down your mind and help attain eternal bliss.
Soma also means “Saha Uma” which denotes Goddess Parvati. The day is also sacred and ideal for worshipping Goddess Parvati, consort of Lord Shiva. Mother Parvati is the ruler of the Moon and hence, offering your sincere prayers to the dynamic Goddess can gift you the ability to master your mind. Observing Vrat or fasting on Soma Pradosham can dissolve your sins and make your dreams come true.
Soma Pradosham Vrat (fasting) connects you directly to Lord Shiva, the universal preserver. People usually observe strict fasting throughout the day and abstain from eating and drinking. Some observe partial fasting by consuming fruits and milk. The entire day is spent with divine prayers to Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. Devotees visit nearby Shiva temples in large numbers and offer Pooja or Abishekam (hydration Pooja) during the twilight time, 1.5 hours before and after sunset. Devotees who stay at home can spend their day by reciting mantras to the Lord or by reading Shiva Purana.
The fast begins at sunrise and ends at sunset after consuming Prasad (offering) from the Pradosham Pooja. Pradosham Poojas are carried out in all Shiva temples with special Abishekam (hydration Pooja) using a variety of items. Each Abishekam item has its own benefit when bathed on Lord Shiva. Usually, the items include milk, honey, ghee, turmeric, sandal, rose water, rice powder and panchamirtham (a mixture of 5 items). Prasad (offering) is distributed to the devotees after the evening Pooja, which is consumed to break the Vrat (fasting).
Observing fasting on Soma Pradosham for Lord Shiva can bestow you with the following blessings:
The sacred scriptures prescribe fire ceremony, Abishekam (hydration ceremony), Pooja/Archana (Light and Sound ceremony), Yantra and Mantra (special sounds) as the ways to offer your prayer to the divine. Out of these, fire ceremony is the most evolved spiritual technology on earth to connect with the divine beings. Participate in the remedial services to clear your karma and receive the blessings.