Kanwar Yatra: journey of faith

Diving Deep into Devotion: The Mystical Journey of Maha Shivratri and Kanwar Yatra. A pilgrimage that epitomizes faith, devotion, and divine connection.
Photo Credit: AP
Photo Credit: AP

Maha Shivratri, an auspicious festival celebrated in the Hindu tradition, venerates the cosmic dance of Lord Shiva, the deity representing destruction and transformation. In the ancient Hindu scriptures, it is believed that Maha Shivratri signifies the convergence of Shiva's divine powers. As the scriptures state, "Shiva signifies the destructive power of time which consumes all," emphasizing the cyclical nature of creation and dissolution.

On this sacred day, devotees engage in fasting, prayer, and night-long vigils seeking to purify their souls and transcend darkness by embracing the illumination of wisdom and truth, as echoed in the scriptures, "In surrendering to Shiva, one transcends the duality of existence to attain enlightenment."

Conversely, the Kanwar Yatra, a revered pilgrimage where devotees known as Kanwariyas embark on a journey to retrieve sacred water from the Ganges River and Mauritius the sacred water is fetched from the Ganga Talao for offering at Shiva temples, finds its roots in Sanskrit scriptures that exalt the sanctity of water as a symbol of purity and life force. In the scriptures, it is written, "Water is the essence of all life, representing the flow of divine energy within us." The Kanwar Yatra embodies the principles of devotion, piety, and submission to divine will, resonating with the scripture's proclamation, "Through devotion and surrender, one merges with the eternal cosmic dance of Shiva."

“The Kanwaria and Kanwar symbolize the harmonious unity of Shiva and Shakti energies, embodying devotion, balance, and the sacred flow of life.”
“The Kanwaria and Kanwar symbolize the harmonious unity of Shiva and Shakti energies, embodying devotion, balance, and the sacred flow of life.”

The Kanwar itself, a wooden pole adorned with lotas at both ends, symbolizes the unity and equilibrium of feminine (Shakti) and masculine (Shiva) energies, reflecting the ancient scripture's teaching, "In the union of Shiva and Shakti lies the harmony of creation." The bamboo rod's representation of the spine, the channel of energy connecting the heavens and the earth, expresses the scripture's concept of Sushumna Nadi as the pathway to spiritual enlightenment.

“The Kanwaria and Kanwar symbolize the harmonious unity of Shiva and Shakti energies, embodying devotion, balance, and the sacred flow of life.”
“The Kanwaria and Kanwar symbolize the harmonious unity of Shiva and Shakti energies, embodying devotion, balance, and the sacred flow of life.”

As the celebration of Maha Shivratri takes on grandeur in Mauritius, a land where Indian heritage thrives, the festival serves as a spiritual anchor for the Hindu community, nurturing a deep connection to ancestral practices. While many young Hindus in Mauritius show enthusiasm in partaking in cultural festivities, it is paramount for them to delve into the scriptures and fully grasp their profound meanings. Honoring the wisdom of elders who have preserved traditions with utmost dedication, the youth must approach spirituality with humility and earnest understanding, acknowledging the scripture's teaching that "True devotion lies in embracing the essence beyond rituals, delving into the spiritual truths that guide our existence."

By aligning with the teachings of their forebears, the next generation can nurture a profound reverence and devotion, paving the path for spiritual growth and enlightenment as dictated by the scriptures, "In learning from our elders and understanding the scriptures, we find the roadmap to attain spiritual wisdom and walk the righteous path towards the divine."

Sunil Gohin

CEO de Wazaa FM et d'Inside News

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