Shiva Honored with Programs at Local Temples

February 25, 2007


Source: The Miami Herald

February is Hindu Heritage Month, and South Florida Hindus wasted no chance to celebrate their culture and faith with a series of programs at different temples throughout Broward.

The Maha Shivaratri, or Lord Shiva Festival, was observed Feb. 16 at the South Florida Hindu Temple and at the Shiva Vishnu Temple, both in Southwest Ranches. Devotees explain that Shiva is one of the most sought-after deities because those who utter the names of Shiva during Shivaratri are freed from all sins.


While both temples venerated Shiva, the content of the services were quite different.

''For us, it was two days of fasting,'' said Bhavani Nirmal, originally from New Delhi, who drives from Miami to attend the Shiva Vishnu Temple.

Devotees there observed two days of fasting and hours of chanting Shiva's name deep into the night -- to 3 a.m. -- while they bathed the deity in milk, honey, curds, coconut water, sugar and sandalwood paste.