Kala Bhairava Jayanthi is the festival ascribed to Sri Kala Bhairava, one of the manifestations of Bhagwan Shiva. It occurs on the Krishna Paksha Ashtami of Karthika month. For the Year 2022, the festival occurs on Wednesday, 16th November 2022. The exact duration of the Ashtami Tithi has to be ascertained from the respective regional calendars.
Kala Bhairava Jayanthi is the anniversary of incarnation of Sri Kala Bhairava. This festival is also called as Mahakaal Bhairavashtami and Kala Bhairava Ashtami. If the festival occurs on Tuesday or Sunday, it is even more significant.
“Kala” denotes time. Bhagwan Shiva, as Sri Kala Bhairav is considered as the creator and administrator of the time. “Bhairvava” is said to denote the giver of fear as well as delight. “Bhairvava”, the dog is also the vahan of Sri Kala Bhairav.
It is believed that as per Shiv Puran, once Sri Bramha also had five heads as Bhagwan Shiva. He had got into a delusion that because of similarity of five heads, He was also equally good. Besides, He also had misunderstanding with Bhagwan Maha Vishnu. He made it known that He was better than Sri Vishnu as well.
Bhagwan Shiva was irked by all this. He took the form of fierce Kala Bhairav and plucked the fifth head of Sri Bramha. Then Sri Bramha apologized to both Sri Shiva and Sri Vishnu.
As Sri Kala Bhairav had plucked Sri Bramha’s head, He was afflicted with Brahma hatya dosh. He had carried the fifth head in His hand and was roaming around for twelve years. The dosh kept following Him. When He entered Kashi, the dosh could not follow Him there. Hence, He stayed in Kashi.
Sri Kala Bhairvava is also considered as Kshetra Palaka, the protector of the place.
Sri Kala Bhairav is also believed to have destroyed Daksha, the demon who humiliated his Son in Law, Bhagwan Shiva. At all the 52 Shakthi sthal (peets), Sri Kala Bhairav is the protector.
Sri Kala Bhairav has eight forms as mentioned below:
-Kapaala Bhairava and
Kala Bhairava Jayanthi is observed by doing prayers and special Pujas to Sri Kala Bhairava along with Bhagwan Shiva and Sri Parvathi Devi. The practice of giving tarpan to the ancestors of the family is being followed.
At all Bhagwan Shiva temples, special archanas are done to Sri Kala Bhairava Swamy. Some devotees observe strict fasting for the day. It is believed that such fasting alleviates all the sins. Feeding of dogs and making donations to the needy and the poor are considered auspicious.