Kalashtami, or Maha kalaBhairavashtami, is the most auspicious day dedicated
to Lord Kala Bhairava. Lord kala Bhairava is a manifestation of Lord Shiva.
Kala Bhairava is the God of Time – Kal means 'time' and 'Bhairava' the manifestation
of Shiva. Ashtami after Poornima, the eighth day after full moon, is considered
the ideal day to propitiate Kala Bhairava. In 2016, Kala Bhairavashtami
is on Nov 22.
Lord Kala Bhairava is also known as Kshetrapalaka, the guardian of the temple. In honor of this, keys to the temple are ceremonially submitted to Lord Kaala Bhairava at temple closing time and are received from him at opening time.
The vahana (vehicle) of Lord Kaala Bhairava is the dog. Feeding and taking care
of dogs is another way of showing our devotion to Lord Kaala Bhairava.
There are eight types of Bhairavas and they are called ashta Bhairavas. They are Asithanga Bhairavar, Ruru Bhairavar, Chanda Bhairavar, Krodha Bhairavar, Unmatta Bhairavar, Kapala Bhairavar, Bhishana Bhairavar and Samhara Bhairavar. Apart from these eight forms there is yet another form called Swarna akarshana Bahiravar. Maha Bhairavar is said to be Shiva himself.
The Swarna akarshana Bhairavar has red complexion and clothed in golden dress.
He has moon in his head. He has four hands. In one of the hands he carries a
golden vessel. He gives wealth and prosperity.
Kala Bhairava Gayatri Mantra
"Om Kaalakaalaaya vidhmahey
Thanno Kaala Bhairava Prachodhayaath."