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Navratri is one of the most important Hindu festivals observed in the Hindu month of Ashwin. This year the festival will be observed from 17th October 2020 to 25 October 2020. The nine-day festival is dedicated to Durga, the Goddess of feminine energy, strength, prosperity and the destroyer of demonic powers.
Since it is celebrated for nine days, the festival is known as Navratri. However, people also refer to it as Durga Puja as during this festival the nine different forms of the Goddess are worshipped. So today we are here to tell you about the myths and significance of this festival. Scroll down the article to read more.
Legends Associated With Durga Puja
- It is said that the demon Mahishasura, who was defeated and killed by Goddess Durga impressed Lord Brahma through a strict penance and sought a boon that would allow him to take the form of any human and animal.
- Once Mahishasura took the form of a beautiful lady and went to an ashram, where several Rishis were performing Havana. Disguised as a lady, he ruined Havana and annoyed the sages to a great extent. As a result, the sages cursed him to be killed by a lady who would defeat him using her power.
- Soon, Mahishasur dethroned Lord Indra and became the king of the entire universe. He continued disrupting peace and spirituality from the universe and would force people to worship him.
- But no God was able to defeat the demon in one go and this when they recalled the curse of the sages who said that a lady would defeat Mahishasura. Soon the holy trinity i.e., Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh transformed Goddess Parvati (as She herself was Adishakti, the supreme power) to Goddess Durga, the warrior God.
- Goddess Durga's body was blessed with divine power and strength from all Gods.
- She later defeated and killed Mahishasura who took various forms during the war to deceive the Goddess and escape the war.
- However, the Goddess using Her divine strength, power and intelligence destroyed the demon and freed the universe from his terror.
Significance Of Durga Puja
- Every year the idols of Goddess Durga are made using the soil from brothels.
- This is because when people enter the brothels, they leave behind their purity, austerity and piousness at the threshold of the brothels.
- This is why the soil of the brothels' threshold is considered to be the most auspicious thing in the world.
- Out of all the rituals of Navratri, the Kanya Pujan which is done on Maha Ashtami (eighth day of Navratri) is considered to be the most important.
- On this day, people worship girls aged between 2 years to 9 years.
- These girl children are believed to be the child form of Goddess Parvati, Lakshmi and Saraswati.
- People perform folk dance during the entire Navratri to enjoy the festival in a memorable way.
- Special dishes are prepared during the festival and offered to the Goddess as Bhog.