Pradosh Vrat is celebrated today by millions of devotees. Let us recollect stories of the great Lord and seek His divine blessings.
The story behind the wedding of Lord Shiva and Ma Parvati, the Shakti (power) of Lord Shiva, begins with Tarakasur, an evil demon who became immensely powerful with boons obtained from Lord Brahma Dev. As per the boons, Tarakasur could not be killed by anyone except Lord Shiva’s son. Unable to bear Tarakasur’s atrocities, the Devas and the humans approached Brahma Dev and asked Him for a solution to their problems. Brahma Dev told the Devas and humans that only the son of Lord Shiva would be able to kill Tarakasur and they will have to pray to Mahadevi.
Pleased with their prayers, Mahadevi appeared before the Devas and humans and promised them that She would incarnate Herself as Parvati and marry Lord Shiva. Soon, the Goddess took birth as the daughter of King Himavat and Queen Menaka who named Her Parvati.
Maa Parvati grew up to be an intelligent and a pious woman. Although many Kings and Princes approached King Himavat for Maa Parvati’s hand, She wanted to marry Lord Shiva and no one else. Upon the advice of Narad Muni, King Himavat took Maa Parvati to the Himalayas where Lord Shiva was meditating. Lord Shiva did not recognize Maa Parvati and asked King Himavat the reason for their visit. The King replied that his daughter wants to serve Him. Lord Shiva readily agreed and asked Maa Parvati to serve Him by collecting flowers for puja. Maa Parvati served Lord Shiva with utmost devotion and ensured that He conducted pujas without any problems. However, Lord Shiva continued to be in deep meditation and did not realize that Maa Parvati was His Shakti. This deeply worried the humans and Devas. They immediately met Kama Dev and asked him to break Lord Shiva’s meditation with his arrows. Kama Dev shot arrows at Lord Shiva to break his meditation and make him recognize Maa Parvati and the real reason behind Her incarnation. As soon as the arrows struck Lord Shiva, He was captivated by Maa Parvati’s charm but soon realized that it was the mischief of Kama Dev. An angry Lord Shiva opened His third eye and burnt Kama Dev to ashes.
Seeing this incident, Narad Muni visited Maa Parvati and asked Her to please Lord Shiva with Her devotion and prayers. Maa Parvati started praying to Lord Shiva with utmost devotion without bothering about the harsh climate of the Himalayas. A pleased Lord Shiva appeared before Maa Parvati and asked Her to marry Him. Maa Parvati asked Lord Shiva to meet Her father and ask for Her hand in a formal manner. A happy King Himavat readily agreed to marry his daughter to Lord Shiva. After marriage, Maa Parvati gave birth to Karthikeya who killed Tarakasur.
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