Sawan 2023: Start Date and Significance Explained


In the Hindu calendar, Sawan, also known as Shravan, is a significant month considered auspicious for the worship of Lord Shiva. It typically falls between July and August in the Gregorian calendar. Sawan 2023 is eagerly awaited by millions of devotees who observe various rituals and practices during this revered month.

Sawan 2023 Start Date

The auspicious month of Sawan in 2023 is expected to commence on Friday 28th July and will end on Sunday 26th August.

Significance of Sawan

  1. Devotion to Lord Shiva: Sawan is dedicated to Lord Shiva, the god of destruction and transformation in Hinduism. Devotees believe that worshipping Lord Shiva during this month brings peace, prosperity, and fulfillment of desires.

  2. Fasting and Rituals: Many devotees observe fasts on Mondays, known as ‘Sawan Somvar’, during this month to seek the blessings of Lord Shiva. They visit Shiva temples, offer water, milk, and bilva leaves to the Shivling, and participate in special pujas.

  3. Kanwar Yatra: One of the most significant aspects of Sawan is the Kanwar Yatra, where devotees carry holy water from the Ganges River to offer it at Shiva temples. This pilgrimage is a demonstration of faith and devotion towards Lord Shiva.

  4. Chanting of Mantras: Reciting ‘Om Namah Shivaya’ and other Shiva mantras is believed to invoke the blessings of Lord Shiva and purify the mind and soul of the devotee.

Rituals and Practices during Sawan

  1. Fasting: Devotees fast on Mondays and refrain from consuming food made with salt. Some may observe a waterless fast known as nirjala vrat.

  2. Offerings: Offerings of milk, water, honey, curd, fruits, and bael leaves are made to Lord Shiva in temples and at home.

  3. Abhishekam: Performing abhishekam or ceremonial bathing of the Shivling with milk, honey, ghee, and water is considered highly auspicious.

  4. Rudra Abhishekam: This elaborate form of worship involves chanting of powerful hymns like the Rudram and Chamakam in praise of Lord Shiva.

Importance of Sawan in Hindu Mythology

According to Hindu mythology, Sawan is the month when Lord Shiva consumed the halahala poison that emerged from the churning of the ocean (Samudra Manthan). He held this poison in his throat, turning it blue and earning him the name ‘Neelkanth’, meaning the one with a blue throat. Sawan is a reminder of Shiva’s benevolence and his willingness to consume poison for the welfare of the universe.

Celebrations and Festivities during Sawan

  1. Haridwar and Varanasi: Cities like Haridwar and Varanasi witness a surge in pilgrims during Sawan. Devotees flock to these sacred places to offer prayers and seek blessings from Lord Shiva.

  2. Maha Shivaratri: The month of Sawan culminates with the festival of Maha Shivaratri, an important Hindu festival dedicated to Lord Shiva. Devotees observe fasts, perform night-long vigils, and visit Shiva temples to seek his divine grace on this day.

Sawan and Astrological Significance

Sawan is associated with the star Shravan in Hindu astrology, which is ruled by the Moon. The Moon is believed to have a strong influence on the human mind and emotions, and worshipping Lord Shiva in this month is said to bring mental peace and emotional stability.

5 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Sawan 2023

1. What is the significance of offering water to Lord Shiva during Sawan?

Offering water, known as ‘jalabhishek’, signifies the cleansing of the soul and the removal of past sins. Water is considered pure and is believed to be a symbol of devotion and surrender to the divine.

2. Can non-Hindus also participate in the rituals of Sawan?

Yes, Sawan is a month of devotion and spirituality open to people of all faiths. Non-Hindus are welcome to participate in the rituals, prayers, and celebrations associated with this auspicious month.

3. What is the importance of chanting mantras during Sawan?

Chanting mantras like ‘Om Namah Shivaya’ is a form of spiritual practice that helps purify the mind, invoke positive energies, and deepen one’s connection with Lord Shiva. Mantra chanting is believed to bring peace and harmony to the individual.

4. Are there any specific customs associated with Kanwar Yatra during Sawan?

During the Kanwar Yatra, devotees carry decorated pots of holy water on their shoulders and walk long distances to offer it at Shiva temples. They undertake this pilgrimage with humility, devotion, and a sense of community, often observing strict austerities along the way.

5. How can one make the most of Sawan 2023 spiritually?

To make the most of Sawan from a spiritual perspective, one can engage in regular prayers, meditation, acts of charity, and self-reflection. Fasting, reading spiritual texts, and participating in rituals with devotion and sincerity can enhance the spiritual experience during this auspicious month of Sawan.

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