Most of you would not know as to why Lord Shiva is offered Datura? Plants hold a great significance according to the Hindu Mythology, it is said that there is no plant or leaf in this world that doesn’t have any medicinal or religious benefit, if it is said that it doesn’t have any, it simply means we have not yet discovered it. Datura plant is one that has many properties and uses.
Any sacred practice cannot be completed without involving nature into it. That is one of the reasons why we offer flowers and other parts of plants to different Gods and Goddesses.
Since Lord Shiva is the destroyer, the kinds of plants that he is offered are much different than what we offer to other Gods and Goddesses, and those plants have a prominent worth.
One of such plants that are offered to Shiva is Datura; which is also known by names like Dhatura, Devil’s trumpets, thorn-apple, hell’s bells, moon flower, jimson weed, devils weed and many more. So, coming back to as to why Lord Shiva is offered Datura, while the Samudra Manthan( the churning of ocean) was taking place, Shiva drank the Halahala poison and Datura flower came out of his chest. It is therefore considered to abate the effect of poison, possessing some poisonous qualities itself. By offering the Datura plant to lord Shiva, we pray him to remove the toxins like jealousy and envy from our body and soul.
The flowers, leaves and the seeds of the Datura plant when consumed even in less quantity can cause hallucination or even madness, if overdosed it can even lead to death.
It has a great medicinal value and can be used to cure various physical and psychological issues, like: pain or inflammation, for quick healing of wounds and to cure fever, but in these illnesses, it is only to be used externally. Its seeds and leaves can be consumed to cure various throat related or respiratory diseases. It is also used to treat various psychological issues. Its usage is also helpful to fight various fears.
The Datura plants are planted with new seeds every year, because their root is susceptible to fungi and other plant borne diseases, therefore if needs great care. It is widely used in ‘Shraavana Mas’, the fourth month according to the Hindu calendar.