Navaratri is a hindu festival which is being celebrated in India with devotion and gaiety. The Indian word, ‘Navaratri’ means 9 nights. This 9 nights and 10 days festival is known as Navaratri all over India. This festival is dedicated to the worship of Mother Goddess Durga. The festival Navratri is one of the major festivals of Hindus along with Diwali – the festival of lights.
Navratri is celebrated twice a year. Once in the Spring season and the other in the Autumn season.It is the biggest festival of the state of West Bengal, Gujarat and almost all the states of India. The number 9 denotes worship of 9 form of Goddess Durga known as Nava Durga, for 9 days. Nava-durga or the 9 forms of Goddess Durga are Skandamata, Kusumananda, Shailaputri, Kaalratri, Brahmacharini, Maha Gauri, Katyayini, Channdaghanta and Siddhidhatri.The tenth day is celebrated as Vijaya Dashami.
The first 3 days out of 9 days are dedicated towards the worship of Goddess Durga. Goddess Durga is considered to be the Universal mother by Hindus and is referred to as ‘Shakti’ which means the energy or power of the entire universe. Goddess Durga represents the infinite love and affection of a mother and the limitless energy of Womanhood. Devotees invoke the power and blessings of Goddess Durga to remove all negative thoughts from their mind. The other names of Goddess Durga are Parvati, Uma, Bhavani, Gauri and Mahishasurmardini.
‘Mahishasurmardini’ is the name given to Goddess Durga as she is the one who has destroyed evil demon Mahishasura who was creating havoc on heaven and earth.
The next 3 days, Goddess Lakshmi is worshipped. Goddess Lakshmi represents wealth, happiness, peace and prosperity.
The final 3 days are dedicated to worship of Goddess Sarawati. Goddess Sarawati is regarded as the Goddess of Knowledge and Wisdom.
The worship of the 3 Goddesses brings peace of mind, positive thoughts and wisdom to the devotees. Goddess Durga is also regarded as ‘Durgatinashini’ which means the one who removes all hurdles, obstacles, troubles, difficulties and fear. Worship of Mother Goddess brings peace, prosperity, wisdom, spiritual knowledge and removes all difficulties, pains and fears.