Tourism: Navratri One of the most popular festival in India - GyanUK
Tue. Aug 13th, 2019

Tourism: Navratri One of the most popular festival in India

Tourism: Navratri One of the most popular festival in India

Navratri, also spelled Navarathri, is a Hindu festival of nine nights and ten days, which is celebrated in the autumn of each year. It is observed for different reasons and is celebrated differently in various parts of the Indian subcontinent. Theoretically, there are four seasonal Navratri. However, in practice, the post-monsoon autumn festival called Sharada Navratri is the most observed in honor of the divine woman Devi (Durga). The festival is celebrated in the brilliant half of the month of the Hindu Ashvin calendar, which normally falls in the months of September and October. No doubt navratri is one of the major tourism festival of India.

In the east and north-east of India, Durga Puja is synonymous with Navratri, where goddess Durga fights and emerges victorious from the buffalo demon to help restore Dharma. In the northern and western states, the festival is synonymous with “Rama Lila” and Dussehra, celebrating the battle and the victory of God Rama over the demon king Ravana. In the southern states, we celebrate the victory of various goddesses, Rama or Saraswati. In any case, the common theme is the battle and the victory of good over evil according to a famous epic or legend in the region, such as Ramayana or Devi Mahatmya.

The celebrations include landscape decorations, a legendary recital, a representation of history and chants of the Hinduism scriptures. The nine days are also an important cultural event of the growing season, such as the competitive design and staging of pandals, a family visit to these pandals and the public celebration of classical and popular dances of Hindu culture. On the last day, called Vijayadashami or Dussehra, the statues are immersed in a body of water like the river and the ocean, or the statue that symbolizes evil is burned by fireworks that mark the destruction of evil. The festival also begins preparations for one of the most important and celebrated festivals, the Diwali, the Festival of Lights, celebrated twenty days after the Vijayadashami.

According to Vaishnu Purana, Navaratri falls theoretically two or four times a year. Of these, the Sharada Navaratri, near autumn (September-October), is the most famous, and Vasanta Navaratri, near spring (March-April), the most important for the culture of the Indian subcontinent . In any case, Navaratri falls in the brilliant half of luni-solar Hindu months. Celebrations vary from region to region, leaving much to the creativity and preferences of Hindus.

1: Sharada Navaratri: The most famous of the four navaratris, which bears the name of sharada which means autumn. We observe the lunar month of Ashvin after the monsoon (September-October). In many areas, the festival falls after the autumn harvest and others during the harvest.

2: Vasanta Navaratri: the second most famous, the name of vasanta means spring. The lunar month of Chaitra after winter (March-April) is observed. In many areas, the festival falls after the spring harvests.

The other two navratris are observed regionally:

3: Magha Navaratri: In Magha (January-February), winter season. The fifth day of this festival is often observed independently: Vasant Panchami or Basant Panchami, the official beginning of spring in the Hindu tradition in which the goddess Saraswati is regarded with great respect through arts, music, writing and aviation. comets. In some areas, the god of the Hindu love of love, Kama is revered.

4: Ashada Navaratri: In Ashadha (June-July), beginning of the monsoon season.

The festivities extend beyond the goddess Durga and the god Rama. Several other goddesses such as Saraswati and Lakshmi, gods like Ganesha, Kartikeya, Shiva and Krishna are revered regionally. For example, a remarkable Panindoune tradition in Navratri is the worship of Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of knowledge, learning, music, and arts through Ayudha Puja. On this day that normally falls on the ninth day of Navratri after Good has conquered Evil through Durga or Rama. In this tourism article we are elaborating significance of each day of nine days of navratri.


Importance of Each Day

The festival is associated to the prominent battle that took place between Durga and demon Mahishasur and celebrates the victory of Good over Evil. These nine days are solely dedicated to Goddess Durga and her nine Avatars. Each day is associated to an incarnation of the goddess. In this tourism blog we are eleborating the significance of each day in detail.


Day 1: Shailaputri

Shailaputri is a manifestation of the Hindu goddess Durga and is one of the first worshipers of Navadurga on the first day of Navratri.
Shailaputri is an avatar of goddess Durga, born in the house of the mountain king “Parvat Raj Himalaya”. The name “Shailaputri” literally means the girl (putri) of the mountain (shaila). Known in various ways as Sati Bhavani, Parvati or Hemavati, daughter of Himavat, king of the Himalayas.
The incarnation of the power of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva, rides a bull and carries a trident and a lotus in both hands. At the time of the previous birth, she was the daughter of Daksha, Sati. Once, Daksha organized a big Yagna and did not invite Shiva. But Sati was stubborn, she got there. Then Daksha insulted Shiva. Sati could not tolerate her husband’s insult and was burned in Yagna’s fire. In another birth, she became the daughter of Himalaya in the name of Parvati  and married Shiva.
In some scriptures such as Shiva Purana and Devi-Bhagavata Purana, the story of the mother goddess is written as follows: Maa Bhagwati in her previous birth was born as the daughter of Daksha Prajapati. Then her name was Sati and she was married to Shiva. But during a sacrificial ceremony organized by her father Prajapati Daksha, her body was burned by the fire of yoga, because she could not bear the insult to her husband, Lord Shiva, from her father, Prajapati Daksha , during the sacrifice ceremony. .
In her next birth, she embodied him as the goddess Parvati, daughter of Parvat Raj Himalaya and, among the Nava Durgas, her name was Shailaputri, who is again called Hemavati.
 She is Devi of the root chakra who, upon waking, begins her journey upward. Sitting in Nandi and making his first journey from the Muladhara chakra. From her father to her husband: the awakening of Shakti, the beginning of his search for Lord Shiva or his movement towards her. Thus, in Navratri pooja the first day, the yogis focus on Muladhara. This is the starting point of your spiritual discipline. They started their Yogasadha from here. Shailaputri is the Shakti Muladhara that must be realized in the Self and seek greater depths, in yogic meditation. It is the rock of the spiritual position and the whole world derives its strength from the Shailaputri aspect of Purna Prakriti Durga.
From Yogi’s point of view, the first navratri is considered a very auspicious day. It is the beginning of yoga to be in harmony with the Divine Mother Durga. Those who want to have any kind of initiation into the Shakti mantras, can have it in the first of Shukla Pratipada.

Day 2: Brahmcharini

Brahmacharini means a pious student who lives in an Ashram with his guru with other students. The goddess is worshiped on the second day of Navratri. The goddess Brahmacharini wears white clothes, a jap mala (rosary) in her right hand and Kamandal, a water utensil in her left hand


According to different versions of their myths, the single Parvati decides to marry Shiva. Her parents learn her desire, discourage her, but she pursues what she wants and calls her Tap for about 5000 years. Meanwhile, the gods approached the god Kamadeva: Hindu god of desire, erotic love, attraction and affection, and asked him to generate a desire to Shiva of Parvati. They did it because of an Asura named Tarkasur who was blessed to be killed only by Lord Shiva’s son. Kama reaches Shiva and draws an arrow of desire. Shiva opens his third eye to his forehead and burns cupid kama to ashes. Parvati does not lose hope or determination to defeat Shiva. She begins to live in the mountains as Shiva, participates in the same activities as Shiva, one of asceticism, yogi and tapas: it is the aspect of Parvati which is considered as that of the goddess Brahmacharini. His ascetic research attracts Shiva’s attention and arouses his interest. He knows her disguised, tries to discourage her, telling him about Shiva’s weaknesses and personality problems. Parvati refuses to listen and insists on his resolution. Shiva finally accepts it and they get married.






Day 3: Chandraghanta

Chandraghanta is the third form of goddess Durga. Her name, Chandraghanta, means “he who has a bell-shaped crescent moon, his third eye is always open and always ready for the war against the demons.” It is also known as  Chandika or Rannchandi. Her worship takes place on the third day of Navaratri. It is thought to reward people with grace, courage and courage. By his grace, all the sins, afflictions, physical sufferings, mental tribulations and ghostly obstacles of devotees are eradicated.
After Lord Shiva had promised Parvati not to marry a woman, his suffering overwhelmed him so much that he surrendered, followed by a meeting full of tears, and agreed to marry him. Soon, the happy moment of Parvati’s life comes. Shiva brings a procession of gods, mortals, ghosts, ghouls, sages, ascetics, Aghoris and Shivaganas to the doors of King Himavan’s palace to bring his girlfriend Parvati on the occasion of his new wedding. Shiva arrives at the palace of King Himavan in a terrifying form and Parvati’s mother, Menavati Devi, faints with terror. Parvati appears to Shiva and sees her formidable form, so to save her parents and other family members, she becomes the goddess Chandraghanta.
Chandraghanta persuaded Shiva to reappear charmingly. Listening to the goddess, Shiva appears as a prince decorated with innumerable jewels. Parvati revived her mother, father, and friends, and then Shiva and Parvati married and promised each other.
Chandraghanta has eight hands holding a trishul, a gada (mace), an arched arrow, a khadak (sword), Kamala (lotus flower), Ghanta (bell) and kamandal (pot of water), the hands remain in a blessing position. or abhayamudra. She rides on a tiger or a lion. His vehicle, which represents bravery and courage, carries a half-moon on his forehead and a third eye in the center of his forehead. His complexion is golden. Shiva sees in the form of Chandraghanta an excellent example of beauty, charm and grace.
Chandraghanta rides a tiger or lion as a vehicle, representing courage. This is a terrible aspect and he roars with anger. This form of Durga is not completely different from the previous forms. This shows that when provoked, it can be vicious. It is said that his vicious form is Chandi or Chamunda Devi. She is the embodiment of calmness.


Day 4: Kushmunda

Kushmanda is worshiped on the fourth day of navratri. Kushmanda is represented with eight hands holding a trident, a disc, a sword, a hook, a club, a bow, an arrow and two pots of honey and blood. His one hand is still in abhayamudra from which she blesses all her devotees. She rides up on a tiger.


When the universe did not exist and darkness dominated everywhere, Maa Kushmanda produced the cosmic egg, bringing light to the universe. Kushmanda has the power and the strength to live in the heart of Sun. Her brightness gives the sun its brightness. She is said to give instructions to the sun god, Surya.





Day 5: Skandmata

Skandamata is the fifth form of the goddess Durga. Literally, it means Skanda’s mother, her name comes from the word, Skanda is another name for the god of war and her son Kartikeya and Mata is the term for the mother. As a member of Navadurga, his cult takes place on the fifth day of Navaratri.


It is believed to give the devotees salvation, power, prosperity, and treasures. It can give wisdom oceans even to the most illiterate, if it likes it. Skandamata, which has the brilliance of the sun, fulfills all the wishes of its faithful. The one who devotes himself to it without counting reaches all the exploits and all the treasures of the life. The worship of Skandamata purifies the heart. While worshiping him, the devotee must have absolute control over his senses and mind. He should free himself from worldly slavery and worship him with unique devotion. Your worship is blessed twice. When the devotee adores him, Lord Skand, his son on his lap, is automatically revered. Therefore, the devotee continues to enjoy the grace of Skandmata with the grace of Lord Skand. If a devotee venerates her without selfishness, the Mother blesses him with power and prosperity. The devotees who worship Skandamata shine with divine splendor. His worship is ultimately conducive to salvation. She is known as “the goddess of fire”.


Day 6: Katyayani

Katyayani is the sixth form between Navadurga or the nine forms of the Hindu goddess Parvati (Shakti), worshiped during the Navratri celebrations. This is the second name that Parvati receives at amarakosha, the Sanskrit lexicon (uma katyayani gaouri kali haimavathi iiswari). In Shaktism, she is associated with the fierce forms of Shakti or Durga, a warrior goddess, who also includes Bhadrakali and Chandika, and is traditionally associated with the red color, like the goddess Durga, the primordial form of Shakti, a fact also mentioned in the Mahabhashya of Patanjali.

It is mentioned for the first time in the Yajurveda part of Taittiriya Aranyaka. Skanda Purana mentions that it was created from the spontaneous anger of the gods, which eventually led to the assassination of the demon Mahishasura, riding on the lion that gave him the goddess Parvati. This occasion is celebrated at the annual Durga Puja festival in most of India.


Her exploits are described in Devi-Bhagavata Purana and Devi Mahatmyam, part of the Markandeya Purana attributed to the sage Markandeya Rishi, who wrote it in Sanskrit. Over time, its presence has also been felt in Buddhist and Jain texts as well as in several tantric texts, including Kalika-Purana (tenth century), which mentions Uddiyana or Odisha, seat of the goddess Katyayani and the Lord Jagannath.

In Hindu traditions such as yoga and tantra, it is attributed to the sixth Ajna chakra or the third eye, and its blessings are invoked by focusing on this point.

Day 7: Kalratri

Kalratri, also called Kaalratri, is the seventh of nine forms of the goddess Durga, known as Navadurga. It is mentioned for the first time in the Durga Saptashati, the oldest known literature on the goddess Durga. Kalaratri is widely regarded as one of the many destructive forms of the Mother Goddess, including Kali, Mahakali, Bhadrakali, Bhairavi, Mrityu, Rudrani, Chamunda, Chandi and Durga.


It is not uncommon to find names, Kali and Kalaratri are used interchangeably, although some argue that these two deities are separate entities.

Kaalratri is traditionally revered during the nine nights of Navratri celebration. The seventh day of Navratri pooja in particular is dedicated to him and is considered the most ferocious form of the mother goddess, her appearance invoking fear herself. It is thought that this form of goddess is the destroyer of all demonic entities, ghosts, spirits and negative energies, who flee after knowing their arrival.




Day 8: Mahagauri

Mahagauri is the eighth manifestation of the goddess Durga and among the navadurgas. Mahagauri is venerated on the eighth day of Navratri. According to Hindu mythology, the goddess Mahagauri has the power to satisfy all the desires of her faithful. He who venerates the goddess is relieved of all the sufferings of life. Mahagauri has four arms. His right arm is in the position to dispel fear and his lower right hand has a trident. She holds a tambourine on the upper part of her left arm and the lower part has the shape of a blessing.
The name Mahagauri means extremely white, since it was white and very beautiful. Mahagauri is usually represented with four hands, his hands holding a trident, a lotus and a drum, while the fourth is in a gesture of blessing. The lotus is sometimes replaced by a rosary. She rides a white bull, usually dressed in white.
The story of Mahagauri’s origins is as follows: The Shumbha and Nishumbha demons can only be killed by a Parvati girl. Therefore, as advised by Brahma, Shiva used his magic to blacken the skin of Parvati, giving Parvati the epithet “Kali”, which means “black”. Parvati was agitated by this mockery, so she performed a severe penance on Brahma to regain her clear complexion. She succeeded in her penance and Brahma advised her to take a bath in the Mansarovar River in the Himalayas. As she bathed, her dark skin parted from her and took the form of a woman. Her name was Kaushiki, born from the skin of Parvati. Following the separation of his black skin, Parvati found his white complexion and the epithet “Mahagauri”. 
Nevertheless, for the task of killing the demons, she gave her beautiful complexion to Kaushiki and she (Parvati) reached the Kali form again. The goddesses Saraswati and Lakshmi provided their powers to Kali after which Kali was transformed into Chandi (Chandraghanta). Chandi killed the demon Dhumralochan. Chanda and Munda were killed by the goddess Chamunda, who appeared from Chandi’s third eye. Chandi was converted into Kaalratri to kill Raktabija and Kaushiki killed Shumbh and Nishumbh, after which he merged with Kali to convert to Gauri. As a result, the goddess Kaushiki also merged with Parvati, so she gave him the titles of Mahasaraswati and Ambika.

Day 9: Sidhidatri

Siddhidhatri is the ninth form of the Goddess Durga, the meaning of her name is as follows: Siddhi means supernatural power or meditative ability, and Dhatri means giver or awarder. She is worshipped on the ninth day of Navaratri (nine nights of Navadurga); she fulfills all the divine aspirations.


In this form Durga is seated on a lotus and is four-armed. She holds a lotus, mace, Sudarshana Chakra and shankha. In this form Durga removes ignorance and she provides the knowledge to realize. She is surrounded by Siddhas, Gandharvas, Yakshas, Devas (Gods) and Asura (Demons) and they worship her. The Siddhi that she provides is the realization that only she exists. She is the goddess of all achievements and perfections.

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