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The eighth day of Navratri is celebrated as the Maha Ashtami or Durga Ashtami. It is one of the most important days of Navratri. On this day, devotees of Goddess Durga worship Her in the form of Mahagauri. This year She will be worshipped on 14 October 2021. Mahagauri is said to be the most beautiful manifestation of Goddess Durga. Today we are here to tell you more about this day. In order to know more, scroll down the article.
Mahagauri is seen as a deity sitting on a cow and wearing a white saree. Her complexion is white as that of milk. She is calm and mesmerisingly beautiful. In this form, Goddess Durga has four arms. In Her left hand, She holds a Damru while Her right hand is in Var Mudra, ready to fulfil the wishes of Her devotees. Her upper left-hand carries a trident while her upper right hand is in Abhay Mudra, ready to remove the fears and problems from Her devotees' life.
Puja Vidhi Of Mahagauri
- First things first, wake up early and freshen up.
- Clean your house as well as your puja room.
- Now take a bath and wear either white or light blue coloured clothes.
- Give a holy bath to the idol of Goddess Durga and offer Her blue or white coloured clothes.
- Now light a Diya in front of the Goddess.
- Offer white bhog items such as kheer, halwa or sweets to the Goddess.
- You can also offer Her perfumes.
- Take white flowers in your hand and chant the mantras and strotam.
- Now take the Sankalpa of feeding girls in the age group of 2 to 9 years.
- Perform aarti and chant the mantras.
- Now distribute offerings among your loved ones, poor people and girls.
- For Kanya Pujan call either 5, 7, 11 or 21 girls along with a boy in the same age group.
- Wash their feet and offer them clean and pure seats.
- Take their blessings.
- Offer them puri, kheer, sweets, fruits, curd and halwa.
- Once they are done eating, decorate them with garlands made up of fresh flowers and offer them red chunari. Colour their feet using red nail paints and colours.
- You can also apply Heena on the hands.
- You should also offer them a new handkerchief along with some rice grains, druva grass, raw turmeric and money.
- If possible offer them clothes and ask them to bless your family.
- Lord Shiva accepted Goddess Parvati as His wife in this form.
- It is said that when Goddess Parvati performed penance to please Lord Shiva and get Him as Her husband, She was called Brahmacharini.
- While She was performing the penance, She had to face various hardships such as She survived on leaves and performed penance under the scorching sun, rain and extreme winter.
- Due to Her strict penance, Goddess Parvati's body turned black and dull.
- When Lord Shiva finally took notice of Her determination and penance, He accepted Her as His wife.
- This is when He poured the Ganga Jal from His Kamandal over Brahmacharini (Goddess Parvati). Due to this, Her complexion turned white and bright.
- Hence, She was called as Mahagauri as the word Mahagauri means the one who is extremely fair.
- Since She wears white sarees, She is also known as Shwetambari.
- Mahagauri is considered to be the symbol of feminine beauty and strength.
- Devotees believe that Goddess Mahagauri fulfils the wishes of those who worship Her with austerity and devotion.
- On this day, people also worship girls of age 2 to 9 years. This is because girls of this age are said to be the representation of Goddess Mahagauri.
- The worshipping of girls on Maha Ashtami is known as Kanya Pujan and is performed with utmost dedication and devotion.
- On this day, devotees should offer blue or white coloured flowers to the Goddess as these two colours symbolise purity, calmness and peace.
1. ॐ देवी महागौर्यै नमः॥
Om Devi Mahagauryai Namah॥
2. श्वेते वृषेसमारूढा श्वेताम्बरधरा शुचिः। महागौरी शुभं दद्यान्महादेव प्रमोददा॥
Shwete Vrishesamarudha Shwetambaradhara Shuchih।
Mahagauri Shubham Dadyanmahadeva Pramodada॥
3. या देवी सर्वभूतेषु माँ महागौरी रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः॥
Ya Devi Sarvabhuteshu Maa Mahagauri Rupena Samsthita।
Namastasyai Namastasyai Namastasyai Namo Namah॥