Welcome the Heavenly Mother on Earth in the Eve of Durga Puja 2017
Welcome the Heavenly Mother on Earth in the Eve of Durga Puja 2017
In 2017, Durga Puja will be celebrated from 26th september to 30th septwmber 2017. It is believed that Maa Durga had freed the world from the unscrupulous forces of monsters. Durga Puja is not only celebrated in the honor of her victory along with the triumph of mankind.
Maa Durga is considered to be the warrior Goddess. She is also known as the essence of endearment and righteousness. She is the most respected and loved female deity not only among the Hindus but in other countries of the world as well. Each and every year grand celebrations are observed in her honor especially on the day of Durga Puja. People prefer buying new clothes along with cleaning their houses in order to invite Mother Goddess.
The grand occasion takes place during the Sharad Navratri. The actual dates for this six day long festival are decided as per the Hindu calendar. The grand occasion of Durga Puja concludes on the tenth calendar day of Sharad Navratri. Some people know this day by the names of:
- Vijaya Dashmi
Durga Puja – Celebrated in Honor of Mahishasura Mardini
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It is a matter of great wonder to learn that Durga Puja, which is celebrated in the honor of Mahishasura Mardini is a major festival for the people of East India. This festival depicts her victory over the deadly demon Mahishasura, who was a native of Mysore. Due to this reason, Durga Puja is also considered to be a major festival in Mysore as well. In order to add color to the festival, a grand Dasara parade is carried out on the streets on the day of Dussehra.
The parade continues from Mysore Palace to Bannimantap with gusto. This 6 day long festival commences from the day of Shashthi and takes place till Vijaya Dashami. For your kind information, the starting of Durga Puja gets whistled much earlier the day of Shashthi, i.e., on the holy day of Mahalaya. This day is regarded to be the beginning of the Devi Paksha.
Significance of Maa Durga
Devi Durga is regarded to be the best source of all forms of energies that persist in this world. She signifies well over evil in a simple to understand manner. During the nine days of Sharad Navratri, all her nine manifestations are worshipped with due devotion which includes:
- Lalita and many more.
When the tenth day approaches, some sort of surprise takes place. This is the day which is eagerly awaited by all! On this day, the complete form of Shakti, i.e., Maa Durga is worshipped on this tenth day of Sharad Navratri in order to attain enormous happiness and peace as she is regarded to be the representative of feminine power.
Good Forename for Maa Durga
Another good forename for Maa Durga is Durgati Nashini, which is a combination of two specific words which are:
- Durgati – It refers to all the evil incidents along with all sorts of troubles and negativities.
- Nashini – This refers to the person who is responsible for eliminating all such unwanted things.
It is believed that Durgati Nashini helps to eliminate all sorts of troubles from the lives of her devotees. Her strong and divine power makes the existence of all sorts of evil powers unfeasible from the human life. The things which highly contribute in representing the power of Maa Durga include:
- Ten arms
- Three eyes
- Her only vehicle, i.e., lion
Significance Regarding the Ten Arms of Maa Durga
It is believed that Mahishasura Mardini is always there to protect her devotees from all possible directions with the help of her ten arms. Each and every arm of her acquires a wide range of weapons and Mudras in order to symbolize her teachings in the best possible manner. Those weapons and Mudras in her hands comprise of the following inclusions:
- Chakra – The Chakra acquired by Maa Durga is considered to be the symbol of dharma, which vanquishes all sorts of evil powers and teaches the right path of Dharma to be followed in life.
- Conch – The conch of Durgati Nashini is believed to spread positivity by eliminating negativity from the surroundings through the power of divine sound. It provides the lesson of spreading positivity with good deeds.
- Sword – The sharp edged sword is a weapon of Mahishasura Mardini which comprise of the power to destroy all sorts of negativities and evil powers. The edges prevent the existence of any sort of negativity around it.
- Bow and Arrow – Bow and Arrow are used to represent energy in the best possible manner. They represent both kinetic and potential forms of energies.
- Lotus – The Lotus flower included in the auspicious hands of the Divine Mother teaches the lesson that despite being on top of dirty water along with mud it holds the ability to spread its fragrance and grace universally. In other words, it teaches us to be calm and beautiful even in the worst situation.
- Gada – The Gada of Maa Durga represents power, dedication, devotion and loyalty. According to it, each and every task must be performed with full devotion and dedication.
- Trishul – The Trishul is considered to be the symbol of bravery along with the remover of miseries. It represents the fact that it is better not to lose the courage in life in order to make removal of miseries an easy task.
- Forgiving Mudra – This stance of Mata’s hand preaches the lesson of forgiving the mistakes of others. Forgiveness provides relief to the doer of mistakes along with the sufferer from its burden.
- Thunderbolt – Thunderbolt in the divine hands of Mata Ji represents toughness which holds the ability to break everything uncertain which comes into the way. We must also learn to face and conquer all the challenges desperately.
- Spear – Spear is such a weapon which comprises of a long shaft and pointed end. It holds the ability to pierce the target. According to it, applying of correct precision pierces each and every trouble of life.
Three Eyes of Maa Durga
Due to the comprising of three eyes, Maa Durga is also known as Triyambake. Her three eyes represent the following:
- Moon – Represents desire through left eye
- Sun – Represents action through right eye
- Fire – Represents knowledge through third eye
The vehicle of Mata Ji, Lion is the symbol of greed, selfishness, cruelty and wickedness. By riding on him, Maa Durga preaches the teaching of controlling such bad qualities with due effort and determination. In other words, they must be governed strictly by us.
Mahishasura Mardini is always seen in red colored sari which represents the symbol of action, danger and power. Hence, this color clearly depicts that she is the personification of immense divine power for saving her devotees from all sorts of troubles and evils.
Legends of Durga Puja
It is a fact to note that there exists some sort of interesting legends. Similarly, there is a big legend associated with Durga Puja. By going through it, it will be possible for you to know the vital reasons for:
- Knowing Maa Durga in the name of Mahishasura Mardini
- Offering prayer to Maa Durga by Lord Rama
Legend of Mahishasura
It is believed that Mahishasura was a deadly demon who was mainly known for having a buffalo head. After successful gaining of the boon regarding his immortality from Lord Shiva after a hard penance, his cruelty as well as brutality got increased.
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In order to bid goodbye to this harsh, terror and cruel natured demon from the Earth forever the three supreme powers namely Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva assembled together and merged their powers in order to give birth to an extraordinary power, Maa Durga. Her power and urge to rescue the world from the powers of devils led to the final destruction of Mahishasura.
Legend of Lord Rama
Another legend associated with Durga Puja is related to Lord Rama. As per the beliefs of Hindus, Maa Durga was worshipped by Lord Rama in order to seek her blessings to fetch success in his fight with Ravana. He needed power to destroy the evil powers of Ravana from Earth.
Thus, with full devotion the Chandi Puja was performed during those nine special days of Sharad Navratri with full devotion. After successful fetching of the blessings, Lord Rama was able to free Seeta Mata from the devilish clutches of Ravana and finally bid him goodbye.
Celebrations of Durga Puja
Especially Kolkata in West Bengal observes the grand celebration of Durga Puja with great grandeur. Many artists get an opportunity to reflect and unleash their hidden talents during this festival. Though this celebration takes place in other parts of India and in some places abroad, it is advised not to miss the celebrations of Durga Puja in West Bengal.
Each and every year, Pandals are created on the basis of latest theme in order to connect the modern day problems with the universal problem solver, Maa Durga. This eagerly awaited festival actually commences from the day of Mahalaya, when Maa Durga is invited on the Earth. After a memorable invitation, celebration starts from the day of Shashti and concludes on the day of Vijaya Dashmi.
The whole celebration can be described in a nutshell as under:
- Shashti – This is the sixth day of Sharad Navratri which is known to mark an important ritual of Devi Bodhan. Devooteed assemble in Pandals and welcome Mata Ji with special prayers and Dhak.
- Maha Saptami – Important ritual like Nabapatrika is performed with special devotion on this second day of grand celebration of the festival. In this ritual of Kola Bow, a banana tree is bathed with holy water and decorated with a beautiful sari as the wife of Lord Ganesha. All nine plants are honored as nine incarnations of Maa Durga.
- Maha Ashtami – This day holds a great importance. The famous ritual of Kumari Puja is performed on this day, in which girls below 12 years of age are worshipped. People with love invite these girls at their hospitalities and credit them as Mother Goddess. Special Prasad comprised of Puri, Chana and Suji Halwa is offered with respect.
- Maha Navami – As this is the last day of Sharad Navratri, it is a very important day for worshipping Maa Durga. Some people prefer honoring young girls as forms of Maa Durga on this special day. In South India, Maha Navami holds great significance in starting of any new task. Equipments at workplaces like machinery, automobiles and books are worshipped on this special day.
- Vijaya Dashmi – This is the last day of this grandeur occasion which is enjoyed with gusto. Large processions are carried out all along the city with beautiful statues of Maa Durga. After the procession gets concluded, these idols are immersed in the water of holy rivers and ponds.
Vijaya Dashmi is considered to be an important day for bidding farewell to Maa Durga. People pray from the core of their hearts hence requesting her to come back soon again the forthcoming year by declaring “Asche Bochor Abar Hobe”. On this special day, women play with Sindoor and pray for the long life of their husbands.
Delicious Delicacies Related to Durga Puja
Durga Puja is the major carnival in West Bengal, the place which is mainly known for mouthwatering sweets and fish curries. Each and every year new recipes are introduced hence adding on the flavor to this grand celebration.
Some of the flavored and mouthwatering delicacies which may be expected to be observed in the celebration of Durga Puja in 2017 include:
- Sandesh – A Bengali Dessert
- Rava fried fish – A snacked fish item
- Rasgulla – Indian sweet dish
- Doi Maach – Fish curry made of curd
- Nariyal Laddu – Sweet dish prepared of coconut
- Fish Pakora – Fish cutlets and many more.
It is high time to take out some time from the busy schedule and give a try to at least some of these recipes. Along with enhancing your creativity, they will definitely include a festive touch to the celebration of Durga Puja in the forthcoming days.
Happy Durga Puja 2017 to all from the core of my heart!
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