Shani Pradosh / Sani Pradosham
Pradosh, also known as Pradosha Vrata or Prahosham Vratam, is an auspicious day that is primarily dedicated to Lord Shiva. According to the traditional Hindu calendar, this day falls twice in a month, on the 13th day after Amavasya (no moon day) and Poornima (full moon day). Hence Pradosha occurs during both the waxing and waning phases of the moon. Pradosha Vrata falling on a Saturday is called Shani Pradosh or Sani Pradosha Vrata. According to Hindu astrology, Lord Shani is believed to create problems in one’s life. Observing vrat (Fast) and offering prayers on Shani Pradosh, is believed to relieve a person from the ill effects of Lord Shani. Below are the significance of Sani Pradosham and the method for observing it. The other pradosha and Abishekas also have their own benefits.
Significance Of Sani Pradosham
According to Hindu Mythology, Saturday is a day dedicated to Lord Shani (Shaneeshwara), who is one among the Navagrahas (nine planetary gods). Lord Shani or Sani is known to cause troubles and ill effects in one’s life as per his position in his or her birth horoscope. Hindus across the world, fear the adverse effects that Lord Shani could bring into their lives. In order to avoid and overcome such adversities and misfortunes, people usually observe fasts on Shanivar or Saturday. When a Pradosh falls on a Saturday, it is referred to as Shani Pradosh. Hence to get relieved from the ill effects of Lord Shani, devotees observe a vrat on Shani Pradosh, by offering prayers to Shiva during the day.
The Pradosha Vrat (fast) is generally observed from the sunrise until the sunset on the Pradosha day. It ends with the evening puja performed to Lord Shani and Lord Shiva. Pradosha literally refers to the time period just before sunset and after sunset. Thus the ideal time for prayers during Pradosha is usually 1.5 hours before sunset and 1 hour after sunset. Most devotees prefer observing a strict fast by completely refraining from food and drinking only water, while few others undertake to fast partially by consuming fruits and water. It is up to the devotees to decide whether to observe a partial or a complete fast according to their personal choices. After performing the evening prayers, the Prasad offered after the pooja is usually consumed as dinner. Devotees recommence with eating proper food only the next morning. On the day of the Pradosh Vrat, devotees usually visit Shiva temples to offer prayers to the Lord and chant various slokas and mantras. The other pradosha also have their own benefits.
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