On the eve of Navratri I extend my warm greetings to all my well-wishers. May this Durga Puja brings happiness to you and fill your life with joy and prosperity. Navratri is a very important Hindu festival celebrated in India, which is devoted to Goddess Durga. The festival is celebrated with great reverence and faith across the country. It stretches over a period of nine days, with each of the nine days being dedicated to one of the nine forms of the Goddess. Talking about the history of Navratri festival, it can be explained through the stories mentioned in the Hindu scriptures.
NAVRATRI- NINE FORMS OF DURGA!
The first form of Durga, ‘Shailputri’, is the Daughter of the Himalaya Mountain. She is the quintessence of Mother Nature and is also referred to as ‘Sati’, the wife of Lord Shiva.
The second form of Durga is the one who performs penance. Goddess Parvati is just another form of Brahmacharini. She is depicted as a ‘Devi’, holding a rosary in her right hand and a ‘Kamandal’ on her left.
The third form of ‘Devi Durga’, ‘Chandraghanta’, the radiant woman with golden hair, holds weapons in each of her ten hands, and a half-moon on her forehead. She is the symbol of bravery and valor, and is a fiercer ‘avatar’ of Goddess Durga.
Depicted as a beautiful woman mounted on a lion, Goddess ‘Kushmanda’ resides in the core of the sun. She created the entire universe in the shape of an egg and gave it life with her radiating smile. She is the fourth incarnation of Goddess Durga.
‘Skanda Mata’ is the fifth form of Durga. She is accompanied by her infant son ‘Skanda’ or ‘Karthikeya’, who is the commander in chief of Gods in battle against demons. She is portrayed as a woman with bright complexion with three eyes and four arms.
‘Katyayani’ was the sixth form of Goddess Durga. The Rishi pined for a daughter in the form of a Goddess, which Durga graciously granted. As a result, Goddess Katyayani was born to the great Rishi ‘Kata’.
‘Kalratri’, the dark Goddess of the night, is depicted as a frightening woman with three eyes, with fire emanating from her nostrils and a long sword in her right hand. She is the seventh form of Goddess Durga and is also known as ‘Shubhamkari’ – the one who does good deeds.
‘Maha Gauri’ is the eighth form of Goddess Durga. She got this name when Lord Shiva cleansed her with water from the Ganges. She is portrayed in a white sari, riding a bull and is the embodiment of peace and tranquility.
The ninth form of ‘Durga Maa’ seated on the lotus, is worshipped by all, including the Gods. She was blessed with supernatural powers (Siddhis) – ‘Mahima’, ‘Laghima’, ‘Prakamya’, ‘Anima’, ‘Prapti’, ‘Garima’, ‘Vashitva’ and ‘Lishitya’.