The Significance of Offering Datura, Bel Patra and Bhang to Lord Shiva
The Significance of Offering Datura, Bel Patra and Bhang to Lord Shiva

In Hinduism, Lord Shiva is revered as the supreme deity who represents destruction, transformation, and transcendence. He is one of the trinity in Hinduism. His devotees offer various items to Lord Shiva as a symbol of their devotion and to seek His blessings. Among these offerings, two significant elements are Datura (also known as thorn apple, devil’s weed and jimsonweed) and Bel Patra (leaves of the sacred wood apple tree).

The practice of offering Datura, Bel Patra and Bhang to Lord Shiva has its roots in ancient Hindu mythology. According to the legend, during the churning of the cosmic ocean (Samudra Manthan), a pot of poison (Halahal) emerged, endangering the existence of the universe. Lord Shiva, in his benevolence, consumed the poison to protect all beings. As a result, His throat turned blue, earning Him the name "Neelkanth," which means "the one with a blue throat." After consuming Halahal Datura emerged from the chest of Lord Shiva and as a result it is one of the powerful poisons.

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Datura, a powerful hallucinogenic plant, possesses medicinal and mystical properties. It has been used in traditional Ayurvedic and folk medicine for its analgesic, sedative, and antispasmodic properties. The plant is believed to have a purifying effect on the mind and body, allowing devotees to achieve a heightened state of consciousness during worship. Offering Datura to Lord Shiva represents the surrender of the ego and the desire for spiritual awakening.

The Bel Patra, derived from the wood apple tree (Aegle marmelos), holds great significance in Hindu mythology. The tree is considered sacred and represents Mara Parvati. Each part of the Bel tree, including its leaves, fruit, and bark, is believed to possess divine properties. Offering Bel Patra to Lord Shiva is considered highly auspicious, and it signifies the devotee's willingness to offer the best of what nature has to offer.

 There are types of bel patar which has their own significance. They include-

  • Bel Patra with 3 leaves which represents the trinity- Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. And also represents the third eye of Lord Shiva.
  • Bel patra with 4 leaves- in Hindu mythology it is said the person who gets Bel Patra with four leaves is considered lucky.
  • Bel patra with 5 leaves- Known to carry the blessings of Lord Shiva, Maa Bhagwati and Goddess Laxmi, simply looking at five leaves Bel Patra is considered to burn past bad karmas.


Offering bhang to Lord Shiva is seen as a means to seek his blessings and attain a state of heightened spiritual awareness. It is believed that bhang can help induce a state of ecstasy and detachment from worldly desires, allowing the devotee to experience a deeper connection with the divine. Bhang is often consumed during festivals like Maha Shivaratri, a night dedicated to Lord Shiva, as a sacrament to enhance devotion and spiritual experiences.

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Datura, Bel Patra and Bhang have symbolic connotations that align with Lord Shiva's divine attributes. Datura, with its intoxicating properties, represents the transcendence of ordinary consciousness and the breaking of limitations. It signifies the shedding of attachments and ego, allowing one to enter a state of liberation and oneness with the divine. Bel patra, on the other hand, represents renewal, fertility, and longevity. Offering bel patra signifies the devotee's desire for a fresh start, spiritual growth, and the blessings of a fulfilling life. The association of bhang with Lord Shiva has historical and cultural significance. It is believed that Lord Shiva is fond of bhang and that consuming it pleases him. The use of bhang is mentioned in ancient Hindu scriptures and texts, such as the Vedas and the Puranas. These texts describe Lord Shiva's association with cannabis and its consumption as part of religious practices.


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