The time of the year to revel in finery and dance to the beats of the traditional drums will soon be here! It is a time when one engages in healthy and pays obeisance to the divine goddess (devi) signified by Goddess Durga with the traditional garbas. During the day too, often, people engage in certain rituals and poojas and abstain from consuming alcohol and meat with respect to the goddess. The festivals also lead to worshippers undertaking where they abstain from certain grains and vegetables and follow specific rules when consuming meals. All of this is undertaken to please the goddess and invoke her blessings.
Navratri Significance Day 1: ShailaputriImage: Shutterstock
She is a form of Parvati, who is the daughter of Raja Himavan, the king of the mountains. The meaning of 'shaila' is extraordinary, one to reaches great heights or a mountain high. In this form, the goddess holds a trident (trishul) and a lotus and is mounted upon a bull. The worship of Goddess Shailaputri is undertaken to reach a high state of consciousness.
This day, the is and joy and to get rid of evil thoughts.
Navratri Significance Day 2: BrahmachariniImage: Shutterstock
This is the form of Parvati in which she went through extreme penance. This goddess is a fountainhead of knowledge and wisdom, and she adorns herself with rudraksha. She holds a water pot (kumbh) in one hand and a rosary in the other. As 'Brahma' means divine consciousness, coupled with achar (which means behavior) this day becomes significantly sacred to meditate.
The colour for this day is the colour of nature and prosperity – green. With this, one can evoke blessings for spiritual knowledge, growth and peace.
Navratri Significance Day 3: ChandraghantaImage: Shutterstock
This is the form of Goddess Durga atop a tiger, symbolising 'shakti' or strength. Here, her hands form mudras or gestures – one of blessing and the other of preventing misdeeds and harm. 'Chandra' stands for the moon, which represents the mind. The Goddess, who wears a half-moon on her forehead, stands for showering supreme bliss through knowledge, and emotional balance.
Wearing grey on this day will enable worshippers to stay rooted.
Navratri Significance Day 4: KushmandaImage: Shutterstock
Her name signifies the creation of the cosmic universe from a divine egg. He has eight arms in this form, one holding a rosary and others sporting weapons, and she is mounted on a tiger. She showers worshippers with energy to grow.
The bright colour orange is for this day, to generate the feeling of warmth and exuberance among worshippers.
Navratri Significance Day 5: SkandamataImage: Shutterstock
This day signifies the worshipping of the goddess's motherly form – Goddess Skandmata. Her name translates to 'mother of Skanda, he is seen seated in her lap in this form, and her vehicle is a lion. She represents motherly affection. Worshipping the goddess in this form is said to bring wisdom, wealth, power and prosperity. Along with three eyes, she has four hands – two hold lotuses and the other two are in mudras of defending worshippers and granting boons.
The colour of serenity and peace is worn on this day to worship the goddess and achieve inner peace.
Navratri Significance Day 6: KatyayaniImage: Shutterstock
In this form, she slays the demon Mahishasura. Her name comes from the sage Katyayan, in whose ashram she resided to do penance. She is invoked with prayers to put an end to all our inner turmoil. Her vehicle is a lion, and she has three eyes and four arms – two in gestures of defending and granting and the others holding lotuses.
The vibrant red symbolising infinite courage, intense passion and love is the colour for this day.
Navratri Significance Day 7: KalaratriImage: Shutterstock
. With this worship, devotees get the solace and comfort at night to rest as the goddess destroys the fear of darkness. The dark-skinned goddess has bountiful hair in this form with four hands, mounted on a donkey. Two hold a cleaver and a torch respectively while the other two are in giving and defending mudras.
Royal blue that stands for elegance is the colour for this day.
Navratri Significance Day 8: MahagauriImage: Shutterstock
She also represents nature, for the energy that propels life forward. Worshipping her on the eighth day means inviting that energy within the person to propel them forward and be liberated. Her countenance radiates peace and compassion and her arms hold a drum and a trident. She rides a bull.
The sublime pink symbolising affection and feminine charm is worn on this day for harmony and kindness.