Welcome, Goddesses! Happy Navratri!

October 5th begins nine days of celebrating the Hindu Goddesses as forms of Shakti, the divine feminine energy.

Durga (Day 1-3)

Durga is a warrior Goddess. She rides a lion or a tiger and she wears bright red. On each day she is also honored in one of her different forms: Kumari, Parvati and Kali. They represent the three different types of femininity: child, young woman, and adult woman.

Lakshmi (Day 4-6)

Lakshmi (Laxmi) is the Goddess of wealth and prosperity. She rides an owl and dresses in gold.

Saraswati (Day 7-9)

The Goddess of wisdom, Saraswati dresses in pure white and rides a white swan.

On the tenth day is a holiday called Dussehra.

Stories

In some regions Navratri is considered to be the period of time when Rama spent nine days praying to the Goddess Durga in her nine different forms in order to get the strength to defeat Ravana and save Sita. Dussehra is then celebrated as the day that Rama killed Ravana.

In some regions Navratri is a celebration of the Goddess Durga defeating a buffalo demon named Mahishasura, whom she fought for nine days and killed on Dussehra. In fact, the legend of this story says that Durga was created by the combined power of all the Gods, including the trinity, because they could not defeat Mahishasura.

How To Celebrate

  • Install a Ma Durga murti in your home and do pujas to it, singing bhajans and offering sweets and bangles or clothes.
  • Some people plant barley seeds on the first day of the puja and distribute the shoots at the end to everyone who attended.
  • On the final day nine young girls are honored as forms of the Goddess. Their feet are washed and they are given new clothes.
  • Folk dances like Garba and Dandiya Rass are performed
  • For Dussehra effigys of Ravana are burned
  • In some regions, a golu display is created. Learn more on how to create it here at the Hindu-Blog.
  • This is also the time to create “village” displays and tableaux!
  • For some, different colors are associated with each day and it’s appropriate to wear the right color each day. Check out all the proper colors here: http://www.bharatmoms.com/blogs/124364/posts/194476-what-colour-dress-to-wear-on-navratridussehra-festivals

 

(There are actually two navratris each year; one in the fall and one in the spring. This one is the Sharadeya Navratri)

Bhajans

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Jaya Aadya Shakti

Jaya Aadya Shakti
Ma Jaya Aadya Shakti
Akhand Brhamand dipavya
panave pragatya ma
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Dwitiya Mehsarup Shivshakti janu
ma shivshakti janu
brahma ganapti gaye
brahma ganapti gaye
hardayi har ma
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Trutiya tran sarup tribhuvan ma betha
ma tribhuvan ma betha
daya thaki karveli
daya thaki karveli
utarvenima
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Chouthe chatura malaxmi ma
sachrachal vyapya
ma sachrachal vyapya
char bhuja cho disha
char bhuja cho disha
pragtya dakshin ma
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Panchame panchrushi panchami gunpadma
ma panchami gunpadma
panchtatv tya soshiye
panchtatv tya soshiye
panchetatvo ma
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Shashthi tu narayani mahishasur maryo
ma mahishasur maryo
narnari na rupe
narnari na rupe
vyapaya saghale ma
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Saptami sapt patal sandhya savitri
ma sandhya savitri
gau ganga gayatri
gau ganga gayatri
gauri geeta ma
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Ashthmi ashtha bhujao ayi ananda
ma ayi ananda
sunivar munivar janamya
sunivar munivar janamya
dev daityoma
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Navmi navkul nag seve navadurga
ma seve navadurga
navratri na pujan
shivratri na archan
kidha har brahma
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Dashmi dash avtaar jay vijyalaxmi
ma jay vijyalaxmi
rame ravan marya
rame ravan marya
ravan maryo ma
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Ekadashi agiyar tatyanikama
ma tatyanikama
kaldurga kalika
kaldurga kalika
shama ne vama
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Barase kala rup bahuchar amba ma
ma bahuchar amba ma
asur bhairav souie
kal bhairav soiye
tara chhe tuj ma
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Terase tulja rup tu tarunimata
ma tu tarunimata
brahma vishnu sadashiv
brahma vishnu sadashiv
gun tara gata
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

Shivbhakti ni aarati je koi gaye
ma je koi gaye
bhane shivannad swami
bhane shivannad swami
sukh sampati pashe
har kaileshe jashe
ma amba dukh harashe
Om Jayo Jayo Ma Jagdambe

 

Garba

Last year I was able to attend a wonderful Garba with my friend’s family. I’m not sure we’ll be able to do it this year, unfortunately. Dancing is one of my favorite things in the world!

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Ladies, if you’re going to a Garba, be sure to wear the Gujarati-style sari with the pallu across the front (a lot of different colors and mirror work are common on Garba-style saris)…

More info at Festivals.ILoveIndia.com

Today at the premium blog, a discussion of verses 4-7 of the Bhagavad Gita

About Ambaa

Ambaa is an American woman of European ancestry who is also a practicing Hindu. She is fascinated with questions of philosophy, culture, and the meaning of life. Join her in the journey to explore how a non-Indian convert to Hinduism experiences her religion.

  • TruthSeeker

    Beautiful video about Garba dance . it is popular among Gujratis.

  • Guest

    is there a way i can contact you through email? I have a few questions and i was looking for guidence since i am somewhat new to this culture.

  • Alia G

    Is there a way i can contact you through email? I was hoping that i could talk to you about Hinduism and seek some guidance :)

    • Ambaa

      The best place to reach me is actually Facebook. Do you have an account? If so, send me a personal message at http://www.facebook.com/thewhitehindu If not I’ll give you an email, I just have to remember to check it! I’m terrible about that.

  • Ambaa

    Ouch. I’ve dedicated my life to Hinduism the past ten years and worked very hard to learn and fully be Hindu. Would you mind helping me learn more by telling me where you see me being confused?

    I would like to continue to study and grow within Hinduism.

    Even before I started identifying as a Hindu, I was taught Vedic prayers by my parents as a child and read Mahabharata stories at bedtime. Hinduism has always been an important part of my life.

    I don’t plan to give advice in areas I am not solid on, but I don’t know what the questions are yet. I can certainly offer advice in the areas of how to navigate being a non-Indian Hindu convert. For other types of cultural questions, I may be able to point this person towards an authority or someone who knows better than I.

    • Guest

      Well as a non-Indian as well i wanted to hear any advice you may have for me since i am still growing up (im a teenager) and i had some specific questions on facing some people with biases against me and my beliefs, how to be more true to this religion, and making sure i am on the right path, etc.

  • taratarotpsychic

    I was introduced to the Hindu Pantheon of Goddesses by a friend of mine many eras ago. I love them all. Blessed Navaratri to you all.


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