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Sheetla Ashtami is one of the most popular Hindu festivals celebrated in honor of Sheetla Mata or Goddess Sheetla. In Hinduism, Sheetla Mata is worshiped as a major Hindu goddess. The Skanda Purana is described in detail in the Skanda Purana. The festival of Sheetalashtami is celebrated on the eighth day after the completion of Holi.
Sheetla Ashtami falls on the Ashtami date of Krishnapaksha of Chaitra month. On this day, Sheetla Mata is worshiped. Performing Sheetla Ashtami puja and fasting makes Sheetla Devi happy and in the family of the fasters, dahjwar, yellow fever, explosives, deodorant boils, all diseases of the eyes, signs of cold pimples and cold-blooded defects are removed.
Worship of Sheetla Ashtami is mainly done on a large scale in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat, in other states also, according to tradition, Sheetla Ashtami is worshiped elsewhere. Hence, this fast is also called Basoda, Lassoura or Basioura. This time, Sheetla Ashtami fast is being celebrated on 16 March 2020, Monday.
You will get detailed information about Sheetla Mata in Skanda Purana. According to Skanda Purana, Sheetla Mata is the goddess of diseases like smallpox, holding urn, soup, broom and neem leaves in her hands. Mata is seated in Abhay Mudra riding on the neck. Along with Sheetla Mata, the demon of Jyvarasura fever, the goddess of cholera, sixty four diseases, the deity of Gantukarna skin disease and the blood goddess Devi. Their urn contains virus or cold healthy and sterilizing water in the form of lentils.
On the day of Ashtami, before sunrise, take a bath with cold water. After this, visiting the temple of Sheetla Mata, offering cold water to the Goddess and worshiping her with her statutes. Offer the quince and a day before the water is soaked with gram dal. Mother of Shitala feels naive to cold food, so food is prepared one night before and kept. After hearing the story of Sheetla Saptami, coming home, five hand raids are made from turmeric on both sides of the main entrance. After saving a little of the water which is offered to Mother Sheetla, she splashes it all over the house. This keeps the blessings of Mother Sheetla and protects the house from diseases. The stove is not lit in the house on Sheetla Ashtami. On this day, people also eat cold food prepared a day before meals.
It has been told in the scriptures that worshiping mother Sheetla Devi on the Ashtami date of Krishna Paksha of Chaitra, Baishakh, Jyeshtha and Ashada fulfills the wishes. According to the belief, even today on the day of Ashtami, the stove is not burnt in many houses and all the devotees enjoy the stale food in the form of happy offerings. The reasoning behind this is that it is from this time that the spring leaves and the arrival of summer, so from now onwards we should avoid stale food.
It is believed that on the day of Sheetla Ashtami, Sheetla Mata Sakshat roams the earth. They can come in any form to eat food. So, if an old man, a beggar or someone comes to the house, do not let him go empty-handed. Make him a meal. On this day animals, birds, etc. should also be added. This makes the mother happy. Bathing with hot water and eating hot food is prohibited on this day.
There are many types of stories about Sheetla Ashtami. According to one of the most popular stories, once on the day of Chaitra Krishna Ashtami, an old woman and her two daughters-in-law fasted. Everyone had to eat stale food that day. So the food was cooked on the very first day. But both daughters-in-law had got children some time ago, so they thought that they and their children would not get sick by eating stale food, so they did not accept stale food and worshiped mother-in-law with their mother-in-law for animals Along with the food prepared, we also roasted and ate them and made them into churma. When the mother-in-law asked to eat stale food, the daughters-in-law avoided it as an excuse for work. This act enraged Sheetla Mata and their two newborns were found dead. When the mother-in-law came to know the whole story, she expelled both of them from the house. Both of them were carrying the bodies of their infant when they saw two sisters near a banyan tree... Their names were Ori and Sheetla. Ori and Sheetla looked at both daughters-in-law unhappily and asked the reason. He told the whole thing. Then Shitala lambasted him and said that he will have to suffer the penalty of sin. The daughters-in-law recognized that she was an interviewed mother, then stepped in and apologized, the mother also took pity on her repentance and her dead children became alive. The two then happily returned to the village. Everyone was surprised to see this miracle. After this, the whole village started accepting Mata.
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