Sheetla Ashtami

Sheetla Ashtami

Sheetla Ashtami is celebrated during the spring season in the month of March or the beginning of April, right after seven days of Holi.
 
Sheetla Mata is commonly called the goddess of small pox. Sheetla Devi Temple is situated at Gurgaon village, a suburb of Gurgaon, in the state of Haryana.
 
Sweets made of wheat flour and jaggery (Gulgulle, Atte Ka Halwa and meethi pooris etc. ) are offered to the goddess and are consumed as parsad/prashad. This festival is known as Basede .Parsad is made the previous day (i.e. Monday) and is offered cold on Tuesday.  It is also a seasonal festival and most of the people start taking bath with cold water from this day instead of hot water. Big Fairs are held in the Shitala/Shitla Temples and Langar (Community food) is prepared and distributed among the worshippers. 
 
In Skanda Purana, Sheetla Mata’s Stotra has been called Sheetlashtak. It is believed that Sheetlashtak was written by Lord Shiva. Sheetla Mata is worshipped as an important Hindu Goddess. The magnificence of Goddess Sheetla has been explained in numerous religious scriptures. Goddess Sheetla has been talked about in Skanda Purana in detail. Sheetla Mata is usually associated with chickenpox. She can be seen holding a pot, soup, broom ad neem leaves. She rides a donkey.