Maha Shivaratri is not a day to drink bhang (a drink prepared from hemp). Lord Shiva has a habit of destroying the worlds, which means destroying the sense of reality of the worlds, but Bhang addicts misinterpreted it and started to drink Bhang (on this day). Lord Shiva doesn’t drink Bhang which makes the neurons unconscious. Lord Shiva drinks the Bhang of Brahma Jnana and meditation. Lord Shiva, along with His consort Parvati, goes to the hermitage of sage Agastya to drink the Bhang of Brahma Vidya.
Which Bhang will you drink?
So you should also drink Bhang in the morning of Maha-Shivaratri. But which Bhang will you drink? Drink the Bhang of Brahma Vidya (the science of Brahman, absolute reality), Brahma Jnana (knowledge of Brahman). Wake up in the morning and pray to God while sitting in bed, ‘Ah! O God! May I like the joy of God, divine joy only... Shiva Shiva… I am Knowledge Absolute, Bliss Absolute… I am He, I am He. (Shivoham, Shivoham).’ Drink the Bhang of Brahma Vidya with such mental attitude. And resolve that ‘today, I will remain happy.’ Love Lord Shiva while worshipping Him and salute mother Parvati while chanting ‘Om Namah Shivaay… Namah Shambhavaaya Cha Mayobhavaaya Cha Namah Shankaraaya Cha Mayaskaraaya Cha Namah Shivaaya Cha Shivataraaya Cha….’ Then mentally go to the bank of the River Ganges, have a holy dip and come back. This type of mental worship uplifts and purifies one greatly. It is very important worship and very easy, anyone can do it.
If one hasn’t seen the banks of the River Ganges, chant ‘Ganga Mata Ki Jai’ and mentally take a holy dip. Then fill a jug with water and slowly pour on a Shivalingam, don’t sprinkle the water hurriedly. If you do not know how to chant ‘Namah Shivaaya Cha Mayaskaraaya Cha…’ then pour water on the Shivalingam while mentally chanting ‘Jai Bholaa naath… Namah Shivaaya Namah Shivaaya…’, mentally offer a flower garland and Bael leaves. Then apply a tilak with the Kumkum to goddess Parvati and pray: ‘Please let me meet the Atma Shiva, Shiva as Atman.’ You can worship by this type of devotional practice for beginners.