Mahashivratri is celebrated widely in Mauritius and with great devotion from the predominently Hindu population.
Devotees principally worship and offer Bael (Bilva) leaves to the Lord Shiva, while fasting all day and through the night. As well as undergoing a pilgramage to Grand Bassin, devotees perform penances as well as meditation, in an effort to faster attain “the highest good”
Throughout the week up to six thousand devotees will make their way to the sacred lake either from all over the island. These pilgrams chant mantras along the way to Lord Shiva – heard in the video below.
Preparation often starts over a month in advance with a huge amount of time and effort put into preparing colourfully decorated ‘Kanwars’ – a traditional Kanwar is a decorative bamboo pole, carried on shoulder with covered water pots balanced at its two ends.
Lord Shiva’s devotees are often known as “Kanwarias”. These days a Kanwar in Mauritius can be an elaborate, colourful structure several meters tall. A kanwar is carried while devotees travel to Grand Bassin also known as ‘Ganga Taloa’.
Maha Shivaratri is a wonderful festival, that like Diwali | A Festival of Light unites the islands Hindu population for a day of celebration.
Watch the video below – a huge thanks to Hysteria Productions – and please leave us a comment if you like it.
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