Om Shree Gurubhiyo Namaha
om shree Ganeshaya Namaha om Shree paravathipatheye Namaha om Shree Sharavanabhavaya Namaha
Om tat kumaraya vidmahe kartikeyaya dhimahi
thano skandah prachodayat Skanda Gayatri
Om Shree Sharavanabhavaya Namaha
Shadananam Chandana Lepithangam
Mahorasam Divya Mayura Vahanam
Rudrasya Soonum Sura Loka Natham
Brahmanya Devam Sharanam Prapadye
I seek refuge with the god, who is Brahman,
Who has six faces,
Who applies sandal paste,
All over his body.
Who is the great essence,
Who rides on a peacock,
Who is the son of Lord Shiva,
And who is the lord of the heaven.
Skanda is the son of Lord Shiva and Parvaty.
Kartikeya meaning ‘son of Krittika’
He has several names like Subramanyan,Kartikeyan, Shanmugan, Skanda, Shadananan, Kumaran, Mayilvahaanan, Velayuthan, Swaminathan, Saravanabavan, Devasenapathy, Vel murugan,and Kumaraswamy. His vehicle is a Peacock and he carries a spear with him. He is worshipped on the 6 day after Diwali on an occasion called ‘Skanta Sashti’ making the victory over the demons Tarakasura and Surapadman. It is believed that if one worships Lord Skanda on Friday and fasts on that day all his wishes will get fulfilled. Further it is more auspicious if it is a Karthika star or krittika star day.
Skanda is also the god of war ,Mars so worship of skanda is done on Tuesdays the day of Mars
Kartikeya is considered as an avatar of Lord Shiva. As per the Legend he was born of the six rays of light that emerged from the third eye of Lord Shiva. The six rays fell on the forest of reed grass and was carried to the Ganges by Vayu and Agni which turned to six beautiful babies on six lotus flowers.these six babies where looked after by Six Kartika sisters , Kartika Stars in the sky so the the baby was named Kartikeya son of Kartika ,because of his six mother’s.The six babies were united into one with six faces and twelve hands when Parvati held them in her arms. His avatar was to put an end to Soorapadman’s cruelty.
The festival is also referred to as Thaipooyam or Thaippooyam (Malayalam) The word Thaipusam is derived from the month name Thai and Pusam, which refers to a star Pushya Nakshatra that is at its highest point during the festival. The festival commemorates the occasion when Parvati gave skanda a vel “spear” so he could vanquish the evil demon Soorapadam. There is a saying Thaipuyyamam marks Subramayan’s birthday; however, it is also believed that Vaikhasi Vishakam, which falls in the Vaikhasi month (May/June), is Subramanya’s birthday
Gayatri Mantras on Sree Kartikeya
‘Om Thatpurushaya Vidhmahe
Maha Senaya Dhimahi
Thanno Skanda Prachodhayath’
Om Thatpurushaya Vidhmahe
Maha Senaya Dhimahi
Thanno Shanmuga Prachodhayath’
Shasti Fasting: How to observe Muruga Shasthi Vratam?
Shasti Vratam or Upvaas is an important fast dedicated to Lord Skanda or Kartikeya or Lord Subramanya swamy. There are two Shastis in a Hindu lunar month. One Shasthi after Amavasya and another after Purnima (Pournami). The Shasti coming after Amavasya (new moon night) is the one meant for fasting. In simple terms, the Shasti coming during the increasing or growing phase of the moon. Lord Muruga is also known as Subramanian or Skanda or Kanda.
note:- Shasti after Amavasya or no moonight ie ustheShukla paksha Shasti is taken as vratam by skanda devotees
How to observe Shasti Vratam?
The Shasti fasting begins with sunrise. The fast is broken on the next day morning after praying to Lord Surya (Sun God).
Japa of the Mantra, Om Saravanabhavaya Namah,
It is fast in many places. But this might not be quite possible for many people due to job, health and other reasons. So many people take some sort of vegetarian food on this day – this is usually a single meal in the afternoon or night.
Many people opt for a fruit diet on the day. Some avoid solid food.
In several Kerala Sunramanya swamy temples, many devotees eat a single rice meal at noon given from the temple. The cooked rice is consumed without any major side dishes.
Devotees listen to stories related to Skanda and reading of Skanda Purana.
Fasting is not just abstaining from food but it also an attempt to instill positive thoughts.
PROSTRATIONS and humble salutations to Lord Subramanya, the Supreme Being, who is the ruler of this universe, who is the indweller of our hearts, who is the second son of Lord Siva, who is the beloved of Valli and Deivayanai, who bestows boons easily on His devotees, who is the embodiment of power, wisdom, love and bliss.
The great demon, Tarakasura, was oppressing the celestials. He drove them out from heaven. All the gods then went to Brahma to appeal for help.
Brahma said to the gods, “O Devas, I cannot destroy Taraka, as he has obtained My Grace through severe penance. But let Me give you a suggestion. Get the help of Cupid, the God of Love. Induce him to tempt Lord Siva, who remains absorbed in His Yoga Samadhi. Let Lord Siva unite with Parvati. A powerful son, Lord Subramanya, will be born to them. This son will destroy the demon that harasses you.”
Indra, the chief of the gods, thereupon requested Cupid to go with his wife, Rati, and his companion Vasanta (the season of spring), to Mount Kailas, the abode of Siva. Cupid carried out the instruction at once, for it was already springtime. Standing behind a tree, Cupid shot his arrow of passion towards Siva, whilst Parvati was placing some flowers in His hands. The moment their hands met, Siva experienced a distracting feeling. He wondered what it was that disturbed His Yoga. He looked around and saw Cupid crouching behind the tree.
The Lord opened His “third eye”, the inner eye of intuition, and Cupid was burnt to ashes by the fire that emanated from it. That is why the God of Love is also called Ananga, which means “bodiless”.
After burning Cupid, the Lord ascertained by His Yogic vision that the birth of Lord Subramanya was absolutely necessary to destroy the powerful Taraka. Siva’s seed was thrown into the fire which, unable to retain it, threw it into the Ganges, which in turn threw it into a reed forest. This is where Lord Subramanya was born; hence, He is called Saravanabhava–“born in a reed-forest”. He became the leader of the celestial hosts and the destroyer of Taraka as Brahma had ordained.
Lord Subramanya is an incarnation of Lord Siva. All incarnations are manifestations of the one Supreme Lord. Lord Subramanya and Lord Krishna are one.
Lord Krishna says in the Gita: “Among the army generals, I am Skanda”.
The Lord manifests Himself from time to time in various names and forms, for the sake of establishing righteousness and subduing wickedness.
Lord Subramanya is a ray born of the Divine Consciousness of Lord Siva. Valli and Deivayanai are His two wives. They represent the power of action and the power of knowledge respectively. He is a Godhead easily accessible in this dark age of ignorance and lack of faith. In this He is no different from Hanuman. He gives material and spiritual prosperity and success in every undertaking of His devotees, even if they show a little devotion to Him. He is worshipped with great devotion in South India. Lord Subramanya’s other names are Kumaresa, Kartikeya, Shanmukha, Guha, Muruga and Velayudhan.
In His picture, Lord Subramanya holds a spear in His hand, just as Lord Siva holds the trident. This is an emblem of power. It indicates that He is the ruler of the universe. His vehicle is the peacock. He rides on it. This signifies that He has conquered pride, egoism and vanity. There is a cobra under His feet, which indicates that He is absolutely fearless, immortal and wise. Valli is on His one side, Deivayanai on the other. Sometimes He stands alone with His spear. In this pose He is known as Velayudhan; this is His Nirguna aspect, which is free from the illusory power of Maya.
The six heads represent the six rays or attributes, namely, wisdom, dispassion, strength, fame, wealth and divine powers. They indicate that He is the source of the four Vedas, the Vedangas and the six schools of philosophy. They also indicate His control over the five organs of knowledge as well as the mind. They denote that He is the Supreme Being with thousands of heads and hands. His head turned in all directions signifies that He is all-pervading. It indicates that He can multiply and assume forms at will.
Skanda Sashti falls in November. It is the day on which Lord Subramanya defeated the demon Taraka
Skanda Shashti festival celebrates the appearance of Lord Kartikeya in this temporal world. It is interesting to note that this festival comes immediately after Navarathiri and Deepavali. Its symbolism is very similar to that of Victory of good over evil. Narakasuran represents the dark forces and Lord Krishna represents the good. Similarly, Shakthi, the goddess representing the good, destroys the evil and dark forces represented by Mahishasuran after the nine night festival, Navarathiri.
Pray from the bottom of your heart: “O my Lord Subramanya, O all-merciful Lord, I have neither faith nor devotion. I do not know how to worship Thee in the proper manner, or to meditate on Thee. I am Thy child who has lost his way, forgotten the goal and Thy Name. Is it not Thy duty, O compassionate Father, to take me back? O Mother Valli, will you not introduce me to Thy Lord? Thy love for Thy children is deeper and truer than that of anyone else in this world. Though I have become Thy worthless and undutiful child, O beloved Mother Valli, pardon me! Make me dutiful and faithful. I am Thine from this very second; always Thine. All is Thine. It is the Mother’s duty to correct, educate and mould Her reckless child when it strays aimlessly on the wrong path. Remove the gulf or the veil of delusion that separates me from Thee. Bless me. Enlighten me. Take me back to Thy holy feet. I have nothing more to say. This is my fervent prayer to Thee and Thy Lord, my beloved and ancient Parents.”
May Lord Subramanya shower His Grace upon you! May His blessings grant you peace, bliss and prosperity!