Gear up to celebrate the festive season beginning with NAV(9)RATRI. It’s a Hindu festival and is celebrated with great sensationalism across the country for 9 nights and 10 days. Different parts of the country celebrate the Navratri in different ways. The devotees fast and worship the nine manifestations of Goddess Durga, also known as Shakti. Each day, one form of Goddess is worshipped. Here is the first form of Goddess that is worshipped today.
Shailaputri was also known as Sati, Bhavani, Parvati or Hemavati is the absolute form of Mother Nature. Born in the house of King of Mountains, The Himalayas, Shailaputri literally means the daughter (putri) of mountains (Shaila). Goddess Shailaputri is illustrated with two hands and a crescent moon on her forehead. With a trident in her right hand and a lotus flower in the left., she rides on mount Nandi (bull).
On this day, Goddess Brahmacharini, a devoted female student who lives in asharam with her Guru. She wears white clothes, holds a japa mala (rosary) in her right hand and Kamandal, a water utensil in her left hand. In this form, Parvati became the great Sati and her unmarried self is worshipped as Brahmacharini.
Goddess Chandraghanta, is the married form of Goddess Parvati and is worshipped on the third day of Navratri. After getting married, Goddess Parvati started adorning her forehead with half Chandra and due to which she was known as Goddess Chandraghanta. This form depicts, Goddess Chandraghanta to be ready for the war will all her weapons. She mounts on the tigress and carries lotus flower, Arrow, Dhanush and Japa Mala in her four right hands and keeps the fifth right hand in Abhaya Mudra.
On the fourth day, Goddess Kushmanda is worshipped. Goddess Parvati, after taking form of Siddhidatri, started living inside the center of the Sun so that he can liberate energy to the universe. Since then Goddess is known as Kushmanda. The glow and radiance of her body is as luminous as that of the Sun. Goddess Siddhitari rides on the lioness and is depicted with eight hands. She has Kamandal, Dhanush, Bada and Kamal in the right hands and Amrit Kalash, Jap Mala, Gada and Chakra in the left hands in that order.
On the fifth day, Goddess Skandmata is worshipped. When Goddess Parvati became the mother of Lord Skanda, she was known as Goddess Skandamata. Goddess Skandamata mounts on the ferocious lion. She carries baby Murugan, also known as Lord Kartikeya and brother of Lord Ganesha in her lap. Goddess Skandamata is depicted with four hands. She carries lotus flowers in her upper two hands. She holds baby Murugan in one of her right hand and keeps the other right hand in Abhaya Mudra. She sits on the lotus flower and because of that Skandamata is also known as Goddess Padmasana.
The most violent form of Goddess Parvati taken to destroy the demon Mahisasur is Goddess Katyayani. Goddess Katyayani is worshipped on the sixth day. This form of Goddess Parvati is also known as Warrior Goddess. It is also believed that as Goddess Parvati was born at the home of sage Katya, her this form is known as Goddess Katyayani. She rides on a magnificent lion and is depicted with four hands. Goddess Katyayani carries lotus flower and sword in her left hands and keeps her right hands in Abhaya and Varada Mudras.
Goddess Kalaratri is worshipped on the 7th day. Goddess Parvati removed her outer golden skin to kill the demons Shumbha and Nishumbha and became known as Goddess Kalaratri. Kalaratri is the fiercest and the most ferocious form of Goddess Parvati. Goddess Kalaratri’s complexion is dark black and she rides on a donkey. She is depicted with four hands. Her right hands are in Abhaya and Varada Mudra and She carries a sword and the deadly iron hook in her left hands. She blesses her devotees with Abhaya and Varada Mudras. Because of her Shubh or auspicious power within her ferocious form Goddess Kalaratri is also known as Goddess Shubhankari.
On the eight day, Goddess Parvati’s fair complexion form, Goddess Mahagauri is worshipped. Goddess Shailaputri was very beautiful and had fair complexion at the age of 16. Due to her extreme fair complexion, she was known as Goddess Mahagauri. Goddess Mahagauri mounts on a bull because of which she is also known as Vrisharudha. Goddess Mahagauri is depicted with four hands. She carries Trishul in one right hand and keeps the second right hand in Abhaya Mudra. She adorns Damaru in the one left hand and keeps the second left hand in Varada Mudra.
Goddess Siddhidatri is worshipped on the ninth day of Navratri. At the beginning of the universe, Lord Rudra worshipped Adi-Parashakti for creation. It is believed that Goddess Adi-Parashakti had no form. The Supreme Goddess of Power, Adi-Parashakti, appeared in the form of Siddhidatri from the left half of Lord Shiva. Goddess Siddhidatri sits on Kamal and rides on the lion. She is depicted with four hands. She has Gada in the one right hand, Chakra in the other right hand, lotus flower in the one left hand and Shankh in the other left hand.
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