We have seen our beloved Moon going through its endless cycle of wax to wane and vice versa every month but do we know the story behind this phenomenon as per our ancient scripts? If not do give this a read.
Daksha - The 1st born of Lord Brahma and the Lord of all creatures on this planet had given 27 of his daughters in marriage to Chandra (The Moon God). However of all the 27 Chandra loved none except his favorite Rohini. The remaining 26 wives felt neglected and unloved. Filled with anguish and pain the daughters decide to tell their father Daksha about their agony. Furious Daksha upon knowing the same calls Chandra to his court and asks for an explanation towards his misconduct and partial behavior among his daughters. Chandra turns arrogant towards him and tells him that he only loves Rohini and he had to marry the other 26 out of compulsion as Daksha was not ready to give Rohini alone to Chandra.
This enraged Daksha further and he went ahead and cursed Chandra to death. The effects of the curse started to manifest and Chandra became seriously ill. There was a lot of panic and havoc created in the planet as Chandra was not a normal God and a lot was dependent on him for life to sustain on Earth. The fear stricken Chandra and the other Gods decide to visit Lord Brahma for a solution. Upon hearing the entire story Brahma suggested that Chandra should visit the shrine of Prabhasa and sit there and worship upon God Shiva with Maha Mrityunjaya Jaap as only Shiva could save him.
Chandra went to the shrine (Now know as the Somnath Temple) and sat there praying to Shiva. He chanted the Mrityunjaya jaap a hundred million times. Pleased with his worship Lord Shiva appeared before him and asked him to wish for a boon. Chandra wished to live and asked for his immortality to be restored.
Since the curse was not given by an ordinary person but Lord Daksha himself Shiva could not revoke the entire curse back however for Chandra to live till eternity Shiva decided to hold him on his head. He also assured him that he will live for eternity but will have go through the endless cycle of increasing and decreasing in size every fortnight due to the effects of the curse.The Somnath shrine is also one of the 12 Jyotirlingas known to the world where Shiva manifested himself.