Soorasamharam is celebrated as the last day of the auspicious Skanda Sashti fasting. Skanda Sashti is one of the most important festivals for Tamil Hindus and this day is dedicated to worshipping Lord Murugan. Skanda Sashti fasting is done during the ‘Karthika’ masam in the Tamil calendar and devotees begin their fast from the day of the Karthika lunar month known as ‘Pirathamai’ while the fasting culminated on the sixth day, popularly known as Soorasamharam day. Soorasamharam is the most important and final day of this six day festivities (falls on November 20, Friday this year – 2020).
The day of Soorasamharam celebrates the triumph of good over evil. According to the legends it is believed that Lord Murugan defeated the demon named Surapadma with his ‘Vel’ and this godly act is called as Soorasamharam. Tamil devotees observe this day with dedication and worship Lord Murugan for restoring Dharam and liberating earth from all evils. The day after Soorasamharam is celebrated as ‘Thirukalyanam’, which is the day when the divine marriage ceremony of Lord Murugan and Devasena took place. The festival of Soorasamharam is celebrated with immense fervour in Lord Murugan temples, most of them being in South India. Of these the festivities at Tiruchendur Murgan Temple is the most splendid and remarkable.
Rituals during Soorasamharam:
• The fasting of the Skanda Sashti festival also continues till the day of Soorasamharam. The observer of this vrat can only eat a single meal during the day. The fasting ends on the following day, that is, on ‘Thirukalyanam’
• Special rituals are held in Lord Murugan temples on this day. Devotees from far and wide come to witness the ‘Abhishekam’ of their deity that is followed by ‘Shringar darshan’.
• In some places like Palani, huge processions of Lord Murugan are taken out from the temple and paraded all through the town.
• On the day of Soorasamharam, in the Tiruchendur Murugan Temple, the divine act of victory of Lord Murugan over Surapadma is re-enacted. This ceremony is witnessed by devotees in thousands of number, from Tamil Nadu and other adjoining states.
Significance of Soorasamharam:
Soorasamharam holds special religious significance for Tamilians. The greatness of this day finds mention in Hindu scriptures like the ‘Skanda Purana’. According to the Hindu mythological stories, Surapadma along with other demons defeated the Devas and captured earth. They then started spreading Adhrama everywhere. To put an end to this, Lord Murugan who is the son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, appeared as the commander of the Devas. The battle between Lord Murugan and Surapadma continued for six days and on the last day, Lord Murugan killed Surapadma with his ‘Vel’. From then onwards this event is popularly referred as ‘Soorasamharam’. The celebrations of the day signify the end of all evils.
On the last day of the auspicious Skanda Sashti fasting, Soorasamharam is celebrated. Skanda Sashti is one of Tamil Hindus ‘ most important festivals and this day is dedicated to Lord Murugan’s worship. Skanda Sashti fasting is performed in the Tamil calendar during the’ Karthika ‘ masam and devotees begin their fast from the day of the Karthika lunar month known as’ Pirathamai,’ while the fasting ended on the sixth day, popularly known as the day of Soorasamharam. Soorasamharam is this six-day festivity’s most significant and final day.
Soorasamharam’s day honors the victory of good over evil. According to the myths, Lord Murugan with his’ Vel’ killed the demon named Surapadma and this godly act is called Soorasamharam. Tamil devotees are watching this day with dedication and worship to Lord Murugan for Dharma’s restoration and liberation from all evil. The day after Soorasamharam is celebrated as’ Thirukalyanam,’ the day of Lord Murugan and Devasena’s holy marriage ceremony. The Soorasamharam festival is celebrated with great fervor in the temples of Lord Murugan, most of which are in South India and across the world in counties such as Malaysia, Singapore, Srilanka, UK and USA. Of these, the most magnificent and impressive are the celebrations at Tiruchendur Murgan Temple.
Rituals during Soorasamharam :
Skanda Sashti festival’s fasting also continues until Soorasamharam’s day. During the day, the observer of this vrat will consume only one meal. The fasting ends at’ Thirukalyanam’ on the next day.
On this day special ceremonies are performed in the temples of Lord Murugan. Far and large devotees come to see their deity’s’ Abhishekam’ followed by’ Shringara darshan.’
Lord Murugan’s massive processions are brought out of the temple and paraded throughout the city in locations like Palani.
On the day of Soorasamharam, the divine act of Lord Murugan’s victory over Surapadma is re-enacted in the Tiruchendur Murugan Temple. Devotees in thousands of numbers from Tamil Nadu and other neighboring states witness this ceremony every year.
Soorasamharam has particular religious significance for Tamiians. This day’s greatness is mentioned in Hindu scriptures such as the’ Skanda Purana.’ Surapadma, along with other demons, defeated the Devas and captured earth, according to the Hindu mythological stories. They then began to spread all over Adhrama. Lord Murugan, the son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, appeared as the Devas ‘ commander to put an end to this. Lord Murugan’s fight with Surapadma lasted for six days, and Lord Murugan killed Surapadma with his’ Vel’ on the last day. This event is popularly referred to as’ Soorasamharam’ from then on. The day’s festivities mark the end of all evils.
Kanda Shasti Kavacham: