Shravan is the month when we see lots of transformation around. Seeds in farms are transforming in to small plants. Bird-eggs are hatching to give birth to young ones. The whole nature looks so fresh due to onset of monsoon. There is greenery everywhere. Shravan is considered the holiest month of the year by Hindus as it comes with innumerable religious festivals and ceremonies. In Hindu calendar Shravan month is dedicated to Lord Shiva.
Shiva is the energy responsible for transformation. Shiva is remover of obstacles on the path. He is responsible for breaking the old to make way for the new. Shiva is the benevolent one. Shiva resides on mount Kailash. The very meaning of Kailash is where there is only celebration, only joy. In the month of Shravan the whole atmosphere is filled with celebration. The Shiva-tatwa is at its peak, it is easily available. So this month is the best month to worship Lord Shiva.
Our ancient Rishis were very wise. They knew that human beings have desires. Some good and some bad. For progress in life, it is necessary that the good desires get fulfilled. By use of Viveka (discrimination) humans can decide which desires are beneficial for them and work for achieving those desires. But sometimes it may so happen that, however hard a person tries he may not be able to achieve his desired goal. He faces so many obstacles on the path. Reasons can be varied, some very subtle, some not so subtle. The Rishis pondered over this problem and came out with an amazing solution. They devised the process of Sankalpa and Puja for the well being of humans.
Sankalpa is taken by the host (Yajman) of the puja before starting the puja. Sankalpa is nothing but the specific purpose for which the puja is being conducted. Before pronouncing the Sankalpa, the Space (Desh) and Time (Kal) where the puja is being conducted is defined. The host (Yajman) is also defined in time-space continuum by his birth star (Nakshatra), birth sign (Rashi), ancestral lineage (Gotra), full name, fathers name etc. After this the Sankalpa is taken by the host. Actually the Sankalpa is never taken but it is dropped or surrendered at the feet of the Lord. When the host drops his Sankalpa at the feet of the divinity with a full faith that whatever is right for him will happen, he becomes free to sit in the puja.
Puja is that which is born out of fullness or completeness. When you drop all your desires, all the botheration and complaints at the feet of Divinity then only you can feel full or complete. Then only you can become fit to sit in a puja. Then only you can become part of the puja.
In Rudra puja the Shiva-tatwa is invoked in all its grandeur. The devotees get immersed in the vibrations of ancient Sanskrit chants and mantras. Mind reaches a meditative state. The whole atmosphere gets charged by the Shiva-tatwa. Devotees become one with the Shiva-tatwa. Shiva is the benevolent energy which transforms and removes obstacles. Sankalpas easily get communicated to the all pervading Divinity and for that omnipresent, omniscient, omnipotent Divinity nothing is impossible. All beneficial desires bear fruit. All obstacles get removed. Life marches ahead.
Watch Sri Sri Ravi Shankar talk about the SHIVA Principle