Shitala Satam Puja Muhurat
Saptami Tithi Ends = 03:55 on 5/Sep/2015
Shitala Satam is significant day in Gujarati Calendar. It is dedicated to Goddess Shitala. It is believed that Goddess Shitala protects her devotees and their families from measles and chickenpox. Hence, families in Gujarat observe rituals of Shitala Satam to seek blessing of Goddess Shitala.
The most significant ritual, which is followed on the day of Shitala Satam, is that no fresh food is cooked in the family. The food which is consumed on the day of Shitala Satam should be cold and stale. Hence most Gujarati families prepare special food on the previous day which is popularly known as Randhan Chhath.
|Goddess of sores, ghouls, pustules and diseases|
|Tamil script||ஷீதலா தேவி ṣītalā tēvi|
|Mantra||Jaya jaya Mātā Śītalā tumahī dharē jō dhyāna. Hōya bimala Śītala hr̥daya, vikasē buddhī bala jñāna. Ghaţa ghaţa vāsī Śītalā, Śītala prabhā tumhāra. Śītala chaiṃyyā Śītala maiṃyyā pala nā dāra.|
Shitala (Sheetala), also called Sitala (शीतला śītalā), is an ancient folk deity widely worshipped by many faiths in North India, West Bengal, Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan as the pox-goddess. She is the Goddess of sores, ghouls, pustules and diseases.
One story says Goddess Durga has incarnated as little Katyayani, the daughter of sage Katyayan to destroy all arrogant evil demonic forces of the world, in her real form as Durga, she killed many demons that were sent by Kaalkeya.
A demon named Jwarasur, the demon of fever, started spreading incurable diseases to Katyayani’s childhood friends, such as cholera, dysentery, measles, smallpox etc. Katyayani cured the diseases of some of her friends. To relieve the world from all fevers and diseases, Katyayani assumed the form of Shitala Devi. Each of her four hands held a short broom, winnowing fan, jar of cooling water and a drinking cup. With her power, she cured all the children’s diseases. Katyayani then requests her friend, Batuk to go out and confront the demon Jwarasur. A battle ensued between the young Batuk and demon Jwarasur. Jwarasur succeeds in defeating Batuk. Then, Batuk, lying dead, magically faded into dust. Jwarasur was shocked that Batuk disappeared and wondered where he went. Then, what he doesn’t know that Batuk has assumed the form of an awful male figure. This person was three-eyed and had four arms. He held a battle-axe, sword, trident and demon head. He was pitch-black in color. His hair was flowing. Eyes blazed with fury. This figure wore a tiger-skin and a garland of skulls. Batuk assumed the form of Lord Shiva’s ferocious form, the terrible Bhairav. Bhairav reprimands Jwarasur and tells him that he is the servant of Goddess Durga (Katyayani). A long discussion ensued but then converted into battle. Jwarasur created many demons from his powers but Bhairav managed to destroy all of them. Finally, Bhairav wrestled with Jwarasur and killed him with his trident.
Name and variants
Shitala literally means “one who cools” in Sanskrit. Shitala is worshipped under different names in various parts of the subcontinent. Shitala is more often called Ma (‘mother’) and is worshipped by Hindus, Buddhists and tribal communities. She is mentioned in Tantric and Puranic literature and her later appearance in vernacular texts (such as the Bengali 17th century Shitala-mangal-kabyas, ‘auspicious poetry’) has contributed to strengthen her status.
Shitala is primarily popular among the people of North India. In some traditions she is identified with an aspect of Parvati, the consort of Shiva. Shitala is addressed as Mother, as a seasonal goddess (Vasant, i.e. Spring) and with honorific titles such as Thakurani, Jagrani (Queen of the World), Karunamayi (She who is full of mercy), Mangala (The Auspicious One), Bhagavati (The Goddess), Dayamayi (She who is Full of Grace and Kindness). The role of Shitala in South India is taken by the Goddess Mariamman, who is worshipped by the Dravidian-speaking people.
The worship of Shitala is conducted by both Brahmins and low caste pujaris. She is primarily worshipped in the dry seasons of winter and spring. There are many arti sangrah and stuties for the puja of Maa Shitala. Some of them are shri shitla mata chalisa, Shitala Maa ki Arti, Shri Shitala mata ashtak, etc.
Iconography and symbolism
Shitala is accompanied by Jvarasura, the fever demon, Oladevi, the cholera goddess, Ghentu-debata, the god of skin diseases, Raktabati, the goddess of blood infections and the sixty-four epidemics. Shitala is represented as a young maiden crowned with a winnowing-fan, riding an ass, holding a short broom (either to spread or dust off germs) and a pot full of pulses (the viruses) or cold water (a healing tool). Among low-caste Hindus and tribal communities, she is represented with slab-stones or carved heads. Sometimes, she is said to be carrying a bunch of neem (Azadirachta indica) leaves, a medicinal herb used throughout India since ancient times that is believed by some to be an effective remedy to most skin diseases to this day.
Shitala is the form of goddess Katyayani (Adi Shakti). She gives coolness to the patients of fever. According to Devi Mahatyam when a demon named Jvarasura gave bacteria of fever to all the children, goddess Katyayani took herself in the form of Shitala to purify children`s blood and to destroy the bacteria of fever in blood. In Sanskrit ‘Jwar’ means “fever” and ‘Shital’ means “coolness”. Shitala is also sometimes depicted with a shady woman called Raktavati (Possessor of Blood). She is often worshiped with Oladevi, another disease goddess.
In Buddhist culture, Jvarasura and Shitala are depicted sometimes as companions of Paranasabari, the Budhhist goddess of diseases. Jvarasura and Shitala are shown escorting her to her right and left side, respectively. In some images these deities are shown as flying away to escape from wrath of the Buddhist goddess Vajrayogini, destroyer of diseases.
Some of the notable temples:
- Harulongpher Shitalabari,Lumding,Nagaon,Assam
- Shitala Mata Mandir,Jodhpur, Rajasthan.
- Shitala Mata Mandir,Nizambad, Azamgarh, Uttar Pradesh
- Sheetala Mata Mandir,Village- Kanana,City- Balotra, Barmer, Rajasthan
- Shitala Devi Temple, Singhya Hauman mandir, Biratnagar, Nepal
- Shitala Devi temple, Rani Bag Hills, Kathgodam, Nainital, Uttrakhand
- Sri Sitala Mata and Chatwai Mata Temple, Purana Pul, Hyderabad.
- Shitala Devi temple, Mumbai
- Jara Shitala Temple, Bowbazar, Kolkata
- Shitala Devi temple, Gurgaon
- Shitala Maa temple, Samta
- Shitala Maa Temple Mand, Mandla, Madhya Pradesh.
- Sheetala mandir, Jalandhar
- Maa Sheetala Mandir, Maghra (Maa Ghar), Biharsharif, Nalanda, Bihar
- Sheetala Mata Mandir, Deoghar, Jharkhand
- Shitala Mata Mandir, New Colony, Mangalwari Bazaar, Nagpur, Maharashtra.
- Shitala Mata Mandir, Hingna T – Point, Ambazari Road, Nagpur, Maharashtra.
- Shitala Mata Mandir, Vill: Ghirdhar Pur Nawada, Post: Gulaothi (Saidpur Road), Distt: Bulandshahr, Uttar Pradesh.
- Shitala Mata Mandir, Vill. & P.O.: Bidhlan, Tehsil: Kharkhauda, Sonipat. Haryana.
- Shitala Mata mandir,Vill.& P.O- Sekhu, Teh-Talwandi sabo, Bathinda, Punjab (151301).
- Shitala Mata Mandir,Town & P.O- Chandannagar,West Bengal.
- Shitala Mata Mandir,Town-Mau,Uttar Pradesh
- Shitala Mata Mandir, Chaukia Town,Jaunpur,Uttar Pradesh
- Sheetla Mata Mandir Bada Panna Kalanaur (Rohtak) Haryana-124113
- Maa Medhuli Mata (Saton Behan Shitla Mata Mandir), Manda Khas, Allahabad Uttar Pradesh 212104
- Sheetala mata mandir kharindwa
- Sheetala Mata Mandir, Gumanpura, Near Chhawani Circle, Kota, Rajasthan
- Sheetala mata mandir Bedipara Rajkot (Gujarat)
- Maa Sheetala Devi Mandir, Vill-Sadila, P.O. -Sakrara, District-Sitapur, Uttar Pradesh.
Shitala Mata is the goddess of pox and measles. Shitala Mata is the Goddess of sores, ghouls, pustules and diseases. Shitala Mata is the form of goddess Katyayani (Maa Durga). Worshipping her gives coolness and relief to the patients of fever, measles and small-pox.
Panchang for Shitala Shasti (Sheetala Satam)
Shitala Mata’s puja is performed on this day after taking bath with cold water. Devotees also eat cold meal on this day. It is forbidden to eat warm or hot food on Shitala Shasti day.
04 September 2015, Friday
Shravana Amanta Month
Bhadrapada Purnimanta Month
1937 Manmatha Shaka Samvat
2072 Kilaka Vikram Samvat
2071 Gujarati Samvat
Nakshatra and Tithi
Bhadrapada Krishna Paksha
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Hindu Panchang for 04 September 2015, Friday, for Ahmedabad, India.
Sheetla Ashtami Fast 2016 – Sheetla Ashtami 2016 – Sheetala Ashtami Festival
Sheetla Ashtami is celebrated after a few days from Holi. Goddess Sheetla’s worship begins from Ashtami Tithi in Krishna Paksha of Chaitra month. This year, it will be celebrated on Friday, 1 April 2016. Goddess Sheetla is worshipped on this day. Stale and cold food is offered to Goddess Sheetla on this day. This is known as Basauda. The same food is eaten as Prasad. It is distributed among devotees in the form of Naivedya.
Sheetla Ashtami Fast Eliminates Diseases
In Skanda Purana, Sheetla Mata’s Stotra has been called Sheetlashtak. It is believed that Sheetlashtak was written by Lord Shiva. Sheetla Mata is worshipped as an important Hindu Goddess. The magnificence of Goddess Sheetla has been explained in numerous religious scriptures. Goddess Sheetla has been talked about in Skanda Purana in detail. Sheetla Mata is usually associated with chickenpox. She can be seen holding a pot, soup, broom ad neem leaves. She rides a donkey.
Sheetla Ashtami Worship
As mentioned earlier, stale and cold food is offered to Sheetla Mata on this day. This is known as Basauda. This is done on the day of Ashtami. Devotees also fast on this day and worship Goddess Sheetla. Sheetla Mata’s story is also recited. After this, she is worshipped and Sheetlashtak is read. Sheetlashtak explains the magnificence of Sheetla Mata. Her mantras are also chanted.
After Sheetla Mata’s worship, Prasad is distributed among all the devotees. Sheetla Ashtami is known as Basauda in northern India. According to beliefs, keeping this fast eliminates all kinds of health problems like fever, chickenpox, eye problems etc.
Importance of Sheetla Ashtami
Food is not cooked in a home on this day. Sheetla Mata is worshipped on the Ashtami Tithi of Krishna Paksha in Chaitra, Vaishakh, Jyeshtha and Ashadh months. Hence, these days are known as Sheetla Ashtami. In present times, Sheetla Mata’s worship encourages a person about cleanliness and hygiene.
A person is inspired to keep his surroundings clean and tidy. It is very important to keep your surroundings clean to protect yourself from the negative impacts of environmental changes. Hence, Sheetla Mata’s worship is very important.
Shitala Devi also called Sitala, is a Hindu goddess widely worshipped in North India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan as the pox-goddess. Shitala Devi literally means the cool Goddess.
In Hinduism, Goddess Sheetala Mata is considered an aspect of Shakti. Sheetala Mata is also considered as an incarnation of Goddess Parvati and Durga, which are two forms of Shakti. Goddess Shitala is popular as Mariamman in Tamil Nadu. She is undoubtedly one of the most popular rural deities and her origin can be traced to the days of Nature Worship.
Legend has it that Goddess Shitala wears a red-colored dress and rides around the villages in North India on a donkey (***) and inflicting people with the dreaded pox –small pox, chicken pox etc. Symbolically, she represents Nature’s power of generating viruses causing disease and Nature’s healing power and is of tribal origin. She is depicted having four hands. In her four hands she carries a silver broom, winnow fan, small bowl and a pitcher with Gangajal, holy water from River Ganga. Occasionally, she is depicted with two hands carrying a broom and pitcher. Symbolically, Goddess Sheetala idol also emphasizes the need for cleanliness.
According to Puranas, Shitala, the cooling one, was created by Lord Brahma. She was promised by Brahma that she will be worshipped as a Goddess on earth but she should carry the seeds of lentils. In folktales in North India, the lentil is ‘Urad dal.’ She then asked for a companion and she was directed to Lord Shiva, who blessed her and created Jvara Asura (the fever demon). It is said that he was created from the sweat of Lord Shiva.
Shitala and Jvara Asura remained in Devaloka along with other gods and goddess. They used a donkey to transport the lentils to wherever they went. But the lentil seeds one day turned into smallpox germs and start to spread the disease among gods and goddesses. Finally, fed up with Goddess Shitala, gods asked her to go and settle in heaven where she will be worshipped. Shitala and Jvara Asura came down to earth and started hunting for a place to stay.
They went to the court of King Birat, an ardent devotee of Shiva. He agreed to worship her and give a place in his kingdom but she will not get the respect given to Shiva. An angry Shitala demanded supremacy over all other gods and when King Birat did not budge. She spread different kinds of pox on the land and finally, the King had to agree to her wishes. Soon the disease and all its after effects were miraculously cured.
The most important festival dedicated to her takes place in Chaitra month, the Ashtami day after Purnima (full moon) in the month is observed as Sheetala Ashtami. There are famous temples dedicated to Shitala Devi in Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.
Shitala Devi literally means the cool Goddess. Some Hindu people beleieve that she is the reliever of all sufferings and pains. A temple dedicated to shitala Mata is located in Mahim, Mumbai.
There is one more Shitala Devi Temple in Haryana :
The state of Haryana has numerous temples scattered all over it. One very famous temple, which overshadows all the rest in terms of popularity, is the Sheetala Devi Temple. It is situated on a side of a beautiful pond at a village named Gurgaon in the state of Haryana. It is considered a leading pilgrimage spot for the Hindus. It is also recognized as a Shakti Peeth and the worshipers almost all round the year crowd the temple.
Innumerable pilgrims throng the temple during Chaitra, the Hindu month. With thousands of worshipers offering prayers, the temple premise reminds one of the Kumbh Mela. Mondays are considered very auspicious in Chaitra month and the crowd is maximum on these days.
The idol of the so called goddess is carved out of an alloy by men and it is gold polished so that it gives a dazzling effect to the idol, to hoodwink the public.
Devotees come to offer prayers with superstitions and insufficient knowledge to implore the goddess to protect them from serious diseases, small-pox, chicken pox, etc. The ceremony performed to get the Devi’s blessings is known as ‘Jal dema’. It is not to be questioned that the returnees children from the temple do get small pox.
The ‘Mundan ceremony’ is another important feature of the temple and many people come here to perform ‘mundan’ or shaving off the head of the son of the family, a religious ceremony of the Hindus.
The infrastructure of the temple really is worth mentioning. The facilities available in the temple of the Sheetala Devi are numerous. The Satsang Bhawan is a hall inside the temple premise where religious programs, meditation and eye wash Yoga programs are held.Proud Indian · 3 years ago0
Goddess Sheetla Devi/ Mata is a Hindu Goddess of smallpox. People worship her so that smallpox affected person recovers and is saved. If you want more information check out : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shitala
Small pox was a widespread affliction in India, for long. Till the eighties, newborn children were vaccinated against small pox.
India being a deeply religious country, where personification of phenomena, has been common, it appears that the Goddess whose ‘anger’ caused small pox, was worshiped by peole in different regions. Mariamman in Tamilnadu, Maramma in Karnataka, some Bhagavathi temples in Kerala and sheetala Devi in North India are such personified deities. Over a period of time, rituals native to the soil developed. ‘Maa viLakku’ and ‘thambhittu’ are offerings in Tamilnadu and Karnataka respectively.Many of these temples are managed by priests who are not brahmins, but there are quite a number of brahmin families, having such deities as their ‘kula devata.’ Samayapuram and Punnaivananallur in Tamilnadu are famous temples.
In Bangalore a similar temple called ‘plague amma’ exits. In Sri Sai Satcharitra too, the Shirdi Baba, is described to be grinding grains of wheat, without explanation and to the astonishment of villagers. It later transpired to be an act of benovelence with premonition by the Baba, to ward off the affliction of a serious contagious disease, in the village.
Lord Jesus is stated to have cursed the satanic forces causing diseases. Even now, evangelists follow such practice.
One should not dub these as superstitions but as manifestation of people’s faith in divine power to keep oneself hale and hearty.
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Oladevi is the goddess of cholera and the wife of the Asura Maya and is worshipped by people in the region of Bengal (consisting of the country Bangladesh and the Indian state of West Bengal). The goddess is also known as Olaichandi, Olabibi and Bibima. She is venerated by Hindus and Muslims of Bengal.
Oladevi is believed to be the wife of Mayasura, the legendary king and architect of Asuras, Danavas, Rakshasas and Daityas in Hindu mythology. Devotees consider her to be the guardian deity against the cholera disease, protecting those who worship her against the disease, which plagued communities across Bengal. Indeed, the Bengali term for cholera is ola-otha or ola-utha, a reference to the nameOla (one meaning of the word otha in Bengali is appearance).
To Hindus, Oladevi is the combined form Goddesses Lakshmi and Saraswati, portrayed as a lady with deep yellow skin wearing a blue sari and adorned with ornaments. She is portrayed with extended arms and seated with a child in her lap. The Muslims of Bengal call her Olabibi or Bibima from Olabibi Gan (Song of Olabibi), which recounts the story of the child of a virgin Muslim princess that disappeared mystically and reappeared as the Goddess, curing the sons of the minister of the kingdom and the badshah, the father of her mother. She is portrayed wearing a cap, scarf and ornaments. On her feet she wore nagra shoes and sometimes also socks. In one hand she held a magical staff that destroyed the ailments of her devotees.
Oladevi is an important figure in the folk traditions of Bengal and is considered by experts as a superimposition of the Hindu concept of the Mother Divine with the stern monotheistic Islamic deity, Allah.The worship of Oladevi as the Goddess of Cholera is believed to have emerged in the 19th century CE with the spreading of the disease in the Indian subcontinent. The importance of Oladevi extends across communal lines and caste barriers.However, the significance of her worship has diminished in modern times as outbreaks of cholera have been reduced considerably by advancements in medicine and sanitation.
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Shitala (Sheetala), also called Sitala (शीतला śītalā), is an ancient folk deity widely worshipped by many faiths in North India, West Bengal, Nepal, Bangladesh …
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