1. What are the different names of Lord Kartikeya?
Lord Kartikeya, the son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati has different names.
Tamil people worship Kartikeya as Lord Murugan while, he is also known as Muruga, Kumara, Skanda, Shanmukha, and Swaminatha.
Lord Murugan/Kartikeya is worshipped as Subramaniam in South India, as a god of war.
As the son of Mahadev was nurtured by six Kritikas or stars, he got his name, Karthikeya.
Who were the 6 Kritikas?
The six Krittikas who raised the Hindu God Kartikeya are Śiva, Sambhūti, Prīti, Sannati, Anasūya, and Kṣamā.
The Krittikas was passing by to take a bath in the Ganga river but they saw the boy they were attracted to him newly born so, they start caring for him. It is believed Kartik has six heads to satisfy all six Krittikas.
2. Kartikeya is handsome of all and decorated
Lord Kartikeya is a highly decorated, handsome, and powerful God born with divine features.
Many believe he is named Kartikeya with the hope the son of Shiva and Parvati will become very handsome while growing up.
3. How was Kartikeya born?
The birth of Kartikeya in ancient scriptures and Vedas says how Shiva’s semen incubated in River Ganges. It was preserved into life form by the heat of Agni Devata. He is also the son born on the banks of the Ganga.
As per another view of the fireball, The lord with six faces Shanmukha was born after Lord Shiva and Parbati meditated in a cave after their marriage. A ball of fire emerged out of their cosmic energies thus, Lord Kartikeya was born out of it.
As per the birth fact, Agni couldn’t bear the heat of the energy of Shiva and Parvati so, he passes it to the Ganges. River Ganga then deposited the fireball born by the love of Shiva Parbati into a lake in a forest of reeds.
Finally, the fireball was molded into a baby with six faces, and it was Kartikeya. He was then known as Shanmuga or Shadanan after his six heads, named Eesanam, Sathpurusham, Vamadevam, Agoram, Sathyojatham, and Adhomugam.
4. Who is the eldest son of Shiva?
The question of who is the eldest son of Shiva controversial.
As per Vedas, the eldest son of Lord Shiva and his consort Parvati is Kartikeya (Kartika), while the youngest one is Ganesha (Vinayaka).
Thus, Kartikeya is also known as Ganadhish Purvaja (elder to Lord Ganesh). Meanwhile, some legend state that he is the younger brother of Ganesha.
5. Lord Kartik was Born to Kill Tarkasura
Soon after Sati’s death, one Asura named Tarkasura got a boon from Brahma that he would only get killed by the son of Shiva. The cunning demon that Lord Rudra will not marry again, and hence, he would not be killed by any.
The birth of Kartike was bound to happen, as Lord Murugan manifested their whole life for killing Tarakasura.
6. What is the Vahana or carriage of Lord Murugan?
The Vehicle Lord Murugan rides frequently is a peacock named Paravani. The lord is mounted on a peacock which originally was an Asura called Surapadma.
The demon took a form of a tree and start praying after he lost to Murugan in combat. The tree was later cut in two, from one half, Kartikeya made his emblem, and from the other, a peacock, which he mounted was formed.
5. What does Murugan carry in his hand?
Kartikeya carries a spear which is also known as Vel, as per scriptures it is the symbolic form of the Kundalini Shakti. Murugan is also known as Velayudhan for his weapon is a spear, Vel.
6. Lord Kartikeya is the Guru to his own Father, Swaminatha – The Guru of Shiva
As per Hindu scriptures, Lord Kartikeya is named Swaminatha after Mata Parvati was impressed with the divine knowledge of her son.
Kartik explained the meaning of Om to Mahadeva after the father-son duo had this conversation about how the Supreme creator knows and couldn’t explain the meaning of Om.
Lord Kartikeya who was lifted onto the shoulders of Shiva defines Om as the Trinity – Lord Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva to his father.
Bhagwaan Kartikeya not only gave Upadesha of Om to Bhagwaan Shiva but also to Bramha ji too as described in Rig Veda’s Akshamallika Upanishad. Thus, Kartikeya is Swaminatha.
7. Who is the consort of Lord Murugan?
Amritavalli and Saundaravalli the two daughters of Lord Vishnu born from his eyes are the wives of Lord Murugan. The Two Vishnu Putries perform religious austerities and pray to the supreme to get Kartikeya as a husband.
Amritavalli incarnated as Devasena the daughter in the Swarga look of Indra. Devasena the 1st wife of Kartikeya is also known as Maa Sasthi as described in, many Vedic scriptures.
You can find the marriage and other facts about Murugan in Mahabharata, Devi Bhagwata Maha Purana, Bramha Vaivarta Maha Purana, and many more texts.
On the other hand, Saundaravalli was reborn as Valli, and she was found among the creepers by the hunter, Nambiraja.
As per the prayer by Dev Raja Indra, Skanda/ Kartikey accepted Devasena as his consort. It is believed that the wedding was celebrated at Tirupparankundram near Madurai in the presence of Parvati and Siva. After that, Skanda married Valli, a hunter princess, an earthly maiden with the help of brother Vighnaharta Ganesh.
8. What are the Festivals Honouring Kartikey?
Kartikey is honored especially in the Vedic tithi Sharad Purnima, also known as Kumara Purnima. Murugan is celebrated on the full moon day after Vijayadashami.
If you are thinking about why Kartikeya is not worshipped that much compared to Shiva, Parbati, and Ganesh. Especially women in North India do not worship Kartikeya.
There is a reason behind it, it is said that the war god is responsible for making a women’s widow. And for the longevity of their husband, the women tend to avoid Skanda.
Alternatively, the unmarried girls who worship Kartikeya as per the ritual in one of the popular festivals dedicated to Kartikeya in Odisha get handsome grooms.
Another major celebration of Murugan is Thaipusam. Why is Thaipusam celebrated?
This particular date marks the event when Goddess Parvati gifted a lance to Lord Murugan to defeat the demon army of Tarakasura. Therefore, Thaipusam is a celebration of the victory of good over evil by the blessings of Maa Parvati.
Which day is special for Lord Muruga?
Aside from these festivities, Skanda Sashti is also yet another regional festival celebrated by Shaivite Hindus. Skanda Shasti is observed in honor of Lord Kartikeya on the sixth day after Karthika Masam Purnima.
As per the Tamil calendar, Kartikeya annihilated Tarakasur on this Tamil month of Aippasi (October – November).
9. Kartikeya is the Commander of Gods (Dev Senapati) – God of War
Kartikeya the strongest son of Mahadev is the general and commander of Gods while combating the evils. Thus, He is called ‘Deva Senapati’ and ‘Yuddharanga.’
10. Which is the tallest statue of Lord Kartikeya/Murugan?
The tallest statue of Lord Murugan is situated at the Batu Caves Murugan Statue (Tamil: முருகன் சிலை; Bahasa Malaysia: Tugu Dewa Murugga). The Muruga statue of the Hindu deity Kartikeya is in Malaysia.
Tamil people who worship Skanda have recently (in 2022) sculpted 46 ft tall Puthiragoundampalayam Murugan Statue was sculpted in the Salem district of Tamil Nadu.