On the fifth day of Navratri, Goddess Durga is worshipped in her Skandmata form. The name Skandmata means mother of Skand or Kartikeya. Since Goddess Durga is also the mother of Lord Kartikeya, She is known as Skandmata. Goddess Skandmata is the deity of the solar system. If one worships Her with full faith and devotion on the fifth day of Navratri, the Goddess showers him/ her with immense happiness and prosperity.
The Goddess in this form has a fair or golden complexion. She sits on a lion and has four hands. She carries lotus in two of Her hands and has Lord Skanda or Kartikeya seated on Her lap. This form of Devi Durga is especially significant because it shows the Goddess in Her mother form. The Skandmata form signifies that the Goddess looks after the whole universe like Her own child.
Story Of Skandmata:
Devi Skandmata or Parvati is the daughter of Himalaya and the wife of Lord Shiva. According to the scriptures, once a demon named Tarakasur was a source of trouble for the whole universe. He had a boon that he could be killed only by the son of Lord Shiva. But since Lord Shiva was a hermit, He did not marry. So, Tarakasur became more violent as he believed that he is immortal.
Later Lord Shiva was married to the daughter of Himalaya, Goddess Parvati. With the union of Shiva and Shakti, Lord Kartikeya or Skandkumar was born. Hence Goddess Parvati came to be known as Skandmata. Later He killed Tarakasur. The Goddess is extremely protective about Her son. Whenever the oppression of the negative forces increase, She rides on a lion and accompanies Her son to kill them.
Skandmata form of the Goddess is very loving and motherly. She showers all Her motherly love on Her devotees who worship Her today. She fulfills all the desires of Her devotees and blesses him/ her with supreme joy and bliss.
Goddess Skandmata is worshipped along with Lord Brahma and Lord Shiva on the fifth day of Navratri. The puja begins with chanting the mantras and offering a herb called Alsi. It is believed that, if the Goddess is offered Alsi, She blesses the devotee with good health. The person is relieved from ailments like cough, cold and other serious health problems. Also the people who are already suffering from such ailments, they can worship Skandmata with Alsi. After that if they partake the Alsi as prasad are believed to get instant relief.
The mantra for Goddess Skandmata is given below:
Ya Devi Sarvabhuteshu Ma Skandmata Rupena Sasthita |
Namasteseya Namastaseya Namastaseya Namoh Namah ||
So, worship Skandmata today with full faith and devotion to get Her blessings.