The Office of SRL Special Day Reflection

Contact: Kimberly E Griggs

The Office of Spiritual and Religious Life acknowledges Maha Shivaratri.

Maha Shivaratri is a Hindu spiritual day dedicated to Lord Shiva, one of the major deities to whom Hindus direct their devotion. Maha Shivaratri literally translates to “the great night of Shiva” and according to legend, it is when Shiva performs tandav, a heavenly dance. Shivaratri is celebrated as the longest night of each month in accordance with the Hindu calendar, but Maha Shivaratri is specifically celebrated as the coming of a new season and to honor Lord Shiva. 

The night before the feast, Hindus recite texts, sing, and tell stories in honor of Lord Shiva whose dynamic cosmic dance creates, preserves, destroys, and recreates the world. One legend suggests that providing offerings to Lord Shiva’s icons can help one achieve moksha, or liberation. Devotees often fast the whole day to attain Shiva’s blessings as well. 

On this auspicious day, the Office of Spiritual and Religious Life hopes that Lord Shiva may shower all who are observing Maha Shivaratri with his blessings. 


Delhi. “Maha Shivratri 2021: History, significance, and celebration.” Hindustan Times. March 21, 2021.

“Resilience: Multifaith Calendar 2022.” Multifaith Action Society. 2022.

Willamette University

Marketing and Communications

Waller Hall, Fourth Floor
900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.

Back to Top