It is a major festival in Hinduism, and this festival is solemn and marks a remembrance of "overcoming darkness and ignorance" in life and the world.
Maha Shivaratri is an annual festival dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva, and is particularly important in the Shaivism tradition of Hinduism.
The celebration includes maintaining a "jaagaran", an all-night vigil and prayers, because Shaiva Hindus mark this night as "overcoming darkness and ignorance" in one's life and the world through Shiva.
Maha Shivaratri is celebrated over three or ten days based on the Hindu luni-solar calendar.
Maha Shivaratri is considered the day when adiyogi or the first guru awakened his consciousness at the material level of existence.
Maha Shivaratri is celebrated in Tamil Nadu with great pomp and fanfare in the Annamalai temple located in Tiruvannamalai district.
The major Jyotirlinga Shiva temples of India, such as in Varanasi and Somanatha, are particularly frequented on Maha Shivaratri. They serve also as sites for fairs and special events.