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Sharada Navratri

Sharada Navratri

Sharada Navratri is a festive celebration dedicated to Goddesses Shakti and her different forms. As indicated by the term ‘Navratri’ and its meaning which refers for nine nights, celebrations and rituals associated with this period lasts for nine nights and ten days. Though, there are many Navratri celebrated during an year, this one is considered to be the most important and out of that significance, is very often referred as ‘Maha Navratri’. The tenth day which is following the nine-day period is celebrated as ‘Dussehra’ or ‘Vijaydashmi’.

Time of Celebration
According to Hindu calendar, Sharada Navratri gets started on the first day of the month of Asvina and concludes on its ninth day.  According to Georgian calendar, it usually falls either in the month of September or October.

About Goddess Shakti
According to the beliefs incorporated in Hindu religion, Goddess Shakti is the supreme-most representation and the Great Divine Mother, from whom the entire existence is her children. She is the source of all energies and forces, and she is the one responsible for creation. She is worshipped in varied forms with varied beliefs.

In a year, the two interface points of arrival of spring and autumn are considered to be extremely important. They also hold significance in religious beliefs. These times are considered as extremely auspicious for conveying devotion to Divine Mother. The Navratri period is also a mark of beginning of winter season.

According to a legend, existence got vulnerable to extreme danger on the hands of a demon named Mahishasura. That vulnerability was more intense in the light of the fact the he gained some invincible powers which no one was able to gain control of. At that time, the Hindu trinity of Lord, i.e. Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu, and Lord Shiva united their powers to create Goddess Shakti. She and Mahishasura fought for nine days, and on the tenth day, Goddess Durga beheaded him to conclude the war. These nine days are celebrated as Navratri.

According to another legend, Uma, wife of Lord Shiva and daughter of King Daksha of Himalayas, once visited her parents to be a part of Yagna. On that visit, her parents offended Lord Shiva. Mortified by that, she jumped into the fire of Yagna, from where she gained prominence as ‘Sati’. In her next birth, she again got herself married to Lord Shiva and concluded the conflict of her past life by making peace with her parents. It is believed that during the nine-day period of Navratri, she comes and lives with her parents.

Major Celebrations
Though, this period is of utmost importance for all the Hindus, it is in specifically considered to be extremely significant period for Bengali and Gujarati. The way with which they celebrate it is entirely unique and exceptional. One can sense their zeal, enthusiasm, and devotion attached to this festival. In Gujarat, Garba and Dandiya Raas programmes are organized. Besides the fervent participation of the locals, people from all over the country as well as outside India arrive in Gujarat to be a part of it. In West Bengal, Durga Puja is one exceptional hallmark of the festive celebrations.

Rituals and Celebrations
1. The first three days of Navratri are meant for worshipping Goddess Durga, which symbolizes as the warrior deity and her various forms of Kumari, Parvati, and Kali. These three different forms of deity individually represents for the three different phases of a woman in life, which are that of a child, a young woman, and a mature woman.

2. In the next three days of Navratri period, devotees are meant to worship Goddess Laxmi. In Hindu mythology, she has been described to be the supreme-most deity governing the aspect of wealth and prosperity in everyone’s life. Devoted and dedicated worship conveyed to her confers one with her blessings in the form of enormous wealth, prosperity, and materialistic comforts.

3. The last three days of Navratri celebrations are meant to be dedicated to Goddess Saraswati, who in Hindu mythology has been described to be the supreme deity governing the aspects of wisdom, art, and communication.

4. While worshipping each of these three forms of Goddess Shakti during this auspicious period, the primary aspect which one should ensure to abide by is utter devotion and faith. In the order of significance, it is followed with appropriate abidance of rituals of worship.

5. Many people follow a rigorous nine-day long fast during the Navratri period. Abiding by a fast and worshipping during this period derive immense virtue and enormous blessings of Goddess Shakti.

6. On the last day of Navratri, which is referred as Mahanavmi, Kanya Puja is performed. As a part of this worship, young girls are invited to home and are worshipped. Preferably, they should be nine in numbers, with each representing one form of Goddess Durga. The feet of the girls are washed with milk, they are provided new clothes, and they are served with special food of the day which includes halwa, puri, and chane.

7.  During this time of the year, farmers sow seeds into their fields and pray Goddess Shakti for better cultivation ahead.All the information given above are of general nature only, collected and reproduced for the general information only. However, if you want some specific, exclusive and deep information, you may avail our specially designed services, for satisfying your thirst of knowledge.

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