“All their religious rituals and celebrations recall those core values of religious teachings. These religious ceremonies, that are being held to dispel the darkness of ignorance and conceit with the light of knowledge, love and peace help tremendously for the human beings to live with sustenance of human dignity in the contemporary world of new technology,” he said. The Prime Minister said that as a much revered occasion that highlights the values of spiritual enlightenment and culture, the Maha Shivaratri Day is deeply symbolic of co-existence and harmony among all and is also an ideal time for reflection. (Colombo Gazette) Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, in his message to mark Maha Shivaratri said that Hindu devotees world over including Sri Lankan Hindus celebrate Maha Shivaratri with the objective of enhancing their spiritual discipline.“I wish all Hindu devotees who celebrate Maha Shivaratri expressing their gratitude to Lord Shiva by fasting and keeping a night-long vigil at temples,may achieve their aspirations. The Hindus believe that Maha Shivaratri is the favoured night of the Lord Shiva; it is spent in the company of friends and family amidst great fellowship. The celebrations associated with this special day are centred on art forms and cultural pursuits since Maha Siva Rathri is also linked to the dance of the Lord Shiva. Throughout this sacred night, the Hindus spend time engaged in meditation and charity in pursuit of spiritual liberty,” he said. The President said that religions provide great relief to the people in today’s competitive world and the religious way of life, which is more towards the spiritual awakening, can be considered as an essential ingredient for building a better society. The Government today noted the importance of ethnic harmony as Hindus in Sri Lanka celebrate Maha Shivaratri,President Maithripala Sirisena, in his Maha Shivaratri message, noted that the prime expectation and the noble vision of all religions is to promote spiritual and moral well-being of humankind.