The Masi Maham or the Masi Makam is a major Hindu festival celebrated by the Tamils all over the world religiously. It is not only an auspicious and important day for the Tamilians, it is also an Annual day for them.
The makam or magma is one among the twenty seven nakshatras according to the Hindu Astrological system and is celebrated in the Tamil month of Masi during the prevalence of this nakshatra.in other language this is known as Magha. Generally the Masi Magam happes on a Pournami or full moon period, but then it is not always applicable.
The Masi Magam becomes Maha Magam when Jupiter comes into the sign of Leo, which happens once every twelve years. 2016 is one such year when the Maha Magam will take place. Jupiter or Brihaspati adds greater glory to this day. This day is said to be able to reduce the negative influence caused by the Rahu, Ketu and Kala Sarpadosh.
- What happens on a Masi Magam day?
On a Masi Magam day, the idols from the temples are taken out of the temple and taken in a procession to the Sea shores or River side or Ponds. There the idols are bathed in the water and pujas and various other rituals are organized there and thousands of devotees throng to take part in the proceedings and to witness these auspicious events.
The devout devotees then take bath in the sea or river or pond water. It is believed that taking bath in the water which had been made holy by the idols having been bathed in the same ensures the attainment of Moksha.
On the day of the Maha Magam, paying homage to Lord Shiva and Murugam will bring divine consciousness and also give a boost to your confidence to move ahead in life. As the ritual is performed in the month of Magha, doing tarpan, or offering to the ancestors are also bound to bring good results and shower their blessing on the devotee.
- Are there any myths and legends surrounding the Masi Magam?
There are numerous myths and some call them legends associated with the day of Masi Magam and the rituals observed on this day. One such and the most plausible one is that Lord Shiva took the form of a child and appeared before the King Vallala of Tiruvannamalai who was an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva. The King was childless and Lord Shiva committed to him that he will perform his last rites. The good king passed away on a Masi Magam day and Shiva it is said, performed his last rites. Lord Shiva blessed the King by declaring that whoever bathes on this day in the sea will attain Mukthi or freedom from being reborn. Devotees believe that every year the Lord Shiva comes on this day to the sea shore to perform the rites of the King.
This day is celebrated with great fervor in Pondichery, at the Adi Kumbeswaran temple in Kumbakonam, Srirangam and other temples worshipping Lord Shiva, Shakti or Vishnu. This auspicious occasion is also observed and celebrated all over the world, like Singapore, Thailand, and Indonesia etc; where there are Tamil Language speaking devout people present.