Skanda Shasti is the 6-day power time (Nov. 8th to Nov. 13th) to access Lord Muruga’s spiritual warrior energy. You can also use this 6-day time window to connect with Muruga’s supreme wisdom to succeed in your endeavors. During these 6 days, Muruga’s power is accessible for victory over the three primary hindrances of human limitation and suffering, represented by the demons Muruga was born to slay:
– Karma (destiny)
– Maya (illusion)
– Ego (separation from God)
Soorasamharam – Importance
Skanda Shasti falls on sixth day of Karthika masam and it is determined on lunar month. Devotees of Lord Murugan observe six days fasting during Skanda Shasti, which begins on the first day of Karthika lunar month and concludes on the sixth day, which is popularly known as Soorasamharam, or Surasamharam day. Soorasamharam 2018 date is November 13. Soorasamharam is the most significant day of the sixth days celebration. It is on the day Lord Murugan defeated Demon Surapadman and hence every year on the day, devotees celebrate this victory of good over evil and restoration of Dharma. They worship Lord Murugan for restoring Dharam. The next day is observed as Thirukalyanam – the divine marriage of Muruga and Devasena.
There are two Shasti in a month and devotees of Skanda observe partial or full fast on the Shashti occurring after the new moon (Amavasya). It may be noted that the Soorasamharam day is decided as the day when Shasti Tithi is associated with Panchami Tithi. Due to this, most of the temples observe Skanda Shasthi on Panchami Tithi if Shasthi Tithi starts before sunset on Panchami Tithi.
Story of Soorasamharam
According to Skanda Purana, the demons under the leadership of Surapadma, Simhamukha and Tarakasura defeated the Devas and took over the earth. They started harassing the human beings and there was Adharma all around. Lord Brahma, the demi-gods and humans prayed to Lord Shiva to intervene and to put an end to the demons Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati gave birth to Lord Muruga – the most handsome god and the commander of the Devas.
Lord Muraga then appeared to fight the demons and the fight continued for six days and killed all the attendants and friends of demon Surapadman. On the final day, there was intense battle between Muruga and Soorapadman. Finally, Lord Muruga pierced the body of Surapadma with his Vel (lance). Suddenly, demon Surapadma transformed into a huge mango tree but Lord Muruga cut the tree vertically into two pieces with His Vel.
The two pieces transformed into a peacock and cock. Lord Muruga took the peacock as his vahana or vehicle and the cock was given a place on his banner. This event is popularly known as Soorasamharam. The famous ‘Vetri Vel’ chanting that takes place on the Shasti day is associated with the victory of Skanda over demon Soorapadman.
Soorasamharam at Tiruchendur Murugan Temple
After the annihilation of demon Surapadman, Muruga desired to worship his father Lord Shiva. He summoned Mayan, the divine architect, who built the Tiruchendur Temple. The main events in the war between Muruga and Demon Soorapadman are depicted on the seashore in the evening of the Soorasamharam day.
Tiruchendur – Soorasamharam 2014 (29.10.2014), ► Please click here for details:
How to observe Skanda Shasti Vratam or Fasting
Skanda Shasti or Kanda Shasthi Vratam is an important observance dedicated to Lord Muruga. Most devotees fast during the 6-day period. There is no common method of Skanda Shasti fasting. Different devotees observe it differently. But there are some basic rules followed by all the devotees.
– Non-vegetarian food is completely avoided during the period.
– Some people also avoid garlic and onions.
– To read scriptures related to Lord Muruga (Skanda Shasti Kavasam or Subrahmanya Bhujangam).
– Devotees listen to stories related to Skanda and reading of Skanda Purana.
– Most devotees also visit Skanda temples during the period.
– When it comes to Skanda Shasti fasting, some devotees only take a single meal a day.
– Some take the meal at noon and others at night.
– Some devotees confine to fruits and juices during the 6-day period.
– There are several Skanda devotees who see the Vratam as an opportunity to clean the body and get rid of unwanted toxic elements. Such devotees confine to water, coconut water and other fruit juices.
The fasting ends on the Sixth day.
It must be noted that ‘Vrata’ or ‘Vratam’ in Sanskrit means ‘vow.’ Vratam should not be misunderstood as mere fasting. By observing a Vratam a person is trying to purify his mind through meditation, worship and by sticking to some ‘vow’ that he/she has taken. Now, this vow can include fasting, not telling lies, not getting anger etc. A vratam should be seen as a deliberate attempt on your part to bring back discipline into your life.
Fasting should be voluntary and it should not be done unwillingly. If you are taking medicines, do not observe intense fasting and stick to the routine suggested by your doctor.
At the end of the six-day fast the body is indeed cleaner than it was before. The mind is cleansed by the pilgrimage, meditation, worship and other devotional activities. A pure mind in a pure body is a sublime combination and conducive to realizing the Divine. This is the reward and benefit of Skanda Shasti Vratam. During the period of Skanda Shasti Vratam many devotees recite Skanda Shasti Kavasam. These are verses asking Skanda for protection. In verse after verse, numerous parts of the body are mentioned as requiring protection, but many more parts, and, it must be mentioned, vital parts are left unmentioned. It has been said, “Ask, and it shall be given unto you”. God always grants you what you ardently desire, so it might be prudent to ask for protection and leave it at that, and Skanda will protect your whole self.
6 Power Nights of Muruga: Receive Blessings of Muruga on Skanda Sashti-, ► Please click here for details:
Time to Connect With Muruga-, ► Please click here for details:
Surrender At Sri Skanda
-, ► Please click here for details:
Please click here for Sri Skanda Shasti Kavasam: Sri Skanda Shasti Kavasam
Please click here for Sri Subrahmanya Bhujangam: Sri Subrahmanya Bhujangam
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