Shivaratri Retreat

Shivaratri Retreat - February 17th - 19th

Join Us to Celebrate

You are invited to a weekend retreat at Mount Madonna Center to join us in celebrating Shivaratri, an auspicious time for purification and reconnecting with the Divine. Deepen your practice in the peaceful, spacious setting of Mount Madonna. Join the Shivaratri pujas (ritual and spiritual celebration) and program offerings on February 18 and all night into February 19.

All are welcome to attend arati twice a day, enjoy vegetarian meals, participate in meditation and/or asana classes, and learn about the history and symbolism of Shivaratri. Optional opportunities include walking/hiking on Mount Madonna’s trails, scheduling Ayurvedic treatments or massage at the Kaya Kalpa wellness center, and taking free time for quiet reflection or meditation.

The program begins on Friday, February 17 and will conclude on Sunday, February 19. You may elect to stay a 3rd night on Sunday, February 19 and receive a 20% discount. Please indicate in your registration that you would like to stay a third overnight. You may also contact Guest Services directly to book the additional night - email or call (408) 846-4090.

“The aim of Shivaratri is dispassion.”—Baba Hari Dass


Shivaratri is a night that celebrates the Hindu deity Shiva on the lunar fortnight, when the moon is waning, in the month of February or March. This particular night is considered a time for consecration, dedication, and ultimately surrender of the mind to the Divine Presence in the form of Lord Shiva. This time of year can be a very challenging time and therefore it is considered one of the most important and auspicious times for spiritual aspirants to intensively pursue their practice. For millennia, Shivaratri rituals have provided a beautiful opportunity for millions of people throughout the world to reconnect with their spiritual aspirations.

The god Shiva has many symbolic names and forms, one of which is the Shiva lingam, a symbol of the formless universal divine principle. In our observance of Shivaratri in 2023, we will begin our ceremonies with a Parthiv Puja during which we will make 1008 clay lingams (an abstract or iconic representation) consecrated with mantra (chanting).

Following the Parthiv Puja we will commence at sunset an all-night vigil including Ganesh Puja, kirtan, meditation, storytelling, midnight yajna. In the early morning, a Maha Shivaratri Puja will conclude with submerging the 1008 lingams in the upper lake accompanied by prayers for Peace.

Through ritual, prayer, chanting, meditation and other austerities (such as fasting and staying up through the night) we purify the mind and offer our ignorance to Shiva, the aspect of God who is the remover or the destroyer. What is removed or destroyed is our erroneous identification as the individual self so that we may recognize our true identity, the Universal Self.