Google+

Kolkata Durga Puja Road Maps 2017

1 comment:

Kolkata Durga Puja Road Maps for 2017

(Download or Zoom for Road Directions)


Pedestrian Circulation Map
Pedestrian Circulation Map

North and Central Kolkata Map
North and Central Kolkata Map

Port Area Map
Port Area Map

South and South East Kolkata Map
South and South East Kolkata Map

South Suburban and South West Kolkata Map
South Suburban and South West Kolkata Map

Continue Reading...

List of Puja Materials

No comments:

The Essentials of Durga Puja
Specific items are needed for each day of Durga Puja. There is a detail method to worship Goddess Durga that are mentioned in the scriptures. Items which are needed for the ritual worship of the Goddess should be collected beforehand so that the ritual is performed smoothly. The list of essentials of Durga Puja are:

Items needed for Kalparambho, the ritual performed before the commencement of the puja and Mahasna:

Food Offerings : Panchashasha (grains of five types - rice, mung or whole green gram, til or sesame, mashkalai or any variety of whole black leguminous seed, job or millet), Panchagobbo (five items obtained from the cow - milk, ghee or clarified butter, curd, cow dung and gomutra ), curd, honey, sugar, three big noibiddos , one small noibiddo, three bowls of madhupakka (a  mixture of honey, curd, ghee and sugar for oblation), bhoger drobbadi (items for the feast), aaratir drobbadi mahasnan oil, dantokashtho, sugar cane juice, an earthen bowl of atop (a type of rice), til toilo (sesame oil).

Water Offerings: Ushnodok (lukewarm water), coconut water, sarbooushodhi , mahaoushodhi, water from oceans, rain water, spring water, water containing lotus pollen.

Puja Items: Sindur (vermillion), panchabarner guri (powders of five different colours - turmeric, rice, kusum flowers or red aabir, rice chaff or coconut fibre burnt for the dark colour, bel patra or powdered wood apple leaves), panchapallab (leaves of five trees - mango, pakur or a species of fig, banyan, betal and Joggodumur or fig), pancha ratna (five types of gems - gold, diamond, sapphire, ruby and pearl), panchakoshay (bark of five trees - jaam, shimul, berela, kool, bokul powdered in equal portions and mixed with water), green coconut with stalk, three aashonanguriuk (finger ring made of kusha).

Cloth Offerings: Gamcha or a piece of cloth to cover the pot, a dhoti for Vishnu, a sari each for bodhon and Chandi.

Decorative Items : Ghat or a pot, kundohari , a mirror, four arrows, tekatha or a triangular frame of wood, horitoki flowers (myrobalan), chandmala (garland with circular decorations), aashon (a mattress of jute or hay).

Other Items : Water camphor and perfumed sandal wood paste. soil - extracted from elephant tusks, from the teeth of the pig, from the horns of the ox, from the bank of rivers Ganga and Saraswati, from both the banks of a river, from a place where four roads intersect, from palaces, from the ant hill, from the mountains, Vishnu toilo.

Items needed for the Shashthi puja of Goddess Durga:

Food Offerings: A stem of wood apple with fruits, green coconut with stalk, an earthen bowl full of atop, three bowls of madhupakka, sesame seeds, curd, honey, clarified butter, sugar, three big noibiddos, one small noibiddo, bhoger drobbadi, aaratir drobbadi, grain, fruits, one dozen bananas with a single stem, white mustard seeds.

Puja Items : A pot, four arrows two ashonanguriuk, panchapallab, pancha ratna, panchashasha, panchagobbo, tekatha, dubba grass, sindur, swastik pituli, conch shell, kajol (corrilium), gorachana, yellow thread, chamor, a fly-whisk made of yak's tail used for fanning, earthen lamps, panch pradip for arati.

Cloth Offerings: Gamcha to cover the pot, a dhoti for the wood apple tree, a sari for bodhon, one sari for amontron.

Decorative Items: Myrobalan, flowers, chandmala, adibas oil, turmeric, soil from the bank of river Ganga, perfume, stone, gold, silver, copper, iron, mirror and alta.

Items Needed For Saptami Puja of Goddess Durga:

Food Offerings: Sesame seeds, myrobalan, flowers, two earthen bowls full of atop, green coconut with stalk, wood apple leaves, white mustard, madhupakka (40 or 22 bowls), honey, sugar, noibiddos (40 or 22), one main noibiddo, fruits, items for bhog.

Puja Items: Jute ropes, red thread, alta, four finger rings, four yadnyopaveet, a pot, a mirror, a tekatha, sandalwood, mashkolai, hibiscus flower, small noibiddo, one big earthen lamp, panchapallab, pancha ratna, panchashasha, panchaguri, vermillion, items for arati, items for the yadnya - sand, wood, dry khorke grass, cowdung, kusha grass, ghee, 108 bel leaves and a bowl.

Cloth Offerings: Clothes for the Pundit, a piece of cloth, gamcha for arati, 40 or 22 finger rings made of kusha, sari for nabapatrika, one sari for the main puja, saris for Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswati, Chandi, dhoti for Kartik, Ganesh, Shiva, Vishnu, clothes for nine planets, clothes for peacock, mouse, lion, demon, buffalo, ox, snake, chandmala, a nosering, iron, conch shell.

Plants and flowers offerings: Flower garland, belpatra garland, Banana plant, turmeric plant, colacassia plant, wood apple stem, pomegranate stem, a stem of Jayanti plant, arum plant, rice plant, ashoka stem, twigs of white aparajita plant, two banana stems.

Items needed for Ashtami Puja of Goddess Durga:

Food Offerings : Fruits, items for bhog, items for arati, 40 or 22 bowls of madhupakka, honey, sugar, curd, ghee, 40 or 22 noibiddos, four small noibiddos.
Cloth Offerings : One sari for Durga, new clothes for Lakshmi, Saraswati, Chandi, Kartik, Ganesh, Shiva, Vishnu, nine planets, the peacock, mouse, lion, demon, buffalo, ox, snake, Jaya, Bijoya and Ram.
Puja Items : One dantakashto, 40 or 22 finger rings made of kusha, one nosering, iron, two conch shells, a box of vermillion, flowers, a garland, belpatra garland, one chandmala, one ghoti.
For Sandhi Puja:  Flowers, gold ring, a bronze bowl for madhupakka, a small sari, main noibiddo, one small noibiddo, one plate, one pitcher, iron, one nosering, one pillow, a mat, a chandmala, 108 earthen lamps, items for bhog, and items for the arati .

Items needed for Nabami and Dashami Pujas:

Food Offerings : Betel leaves, pan masala, 40 or 22 bowls of madhupakka, honey, sugar, curd, ghee, 40 or 22 noibiddos, four small noibiddos.

Cloth Offerings : Clothes for Lakshmi, Saraswati, Chandi, Kartik, Ganesh, Shiva, Vishnu, the nine planets, the Peacock, Mouse, Lion, Demon, Buffalo, Ox, Snake, Jaya, Bijoya and Ram, one dantakashto , one sari for the main puja.

Puja Items: Flowers, 40 or 22 finger rings made of kusha, one ghoti , one nosering, iron, two Shankha(conch shells), a box of Vermillion, flower garland, belpatra garland, a chandmala, one plate, items needed for the yadnya (fire sacrifice), bel leaves, gift for the Purohit.

For the Dashami puja:  Perfume, flowers, durba grass, basil leaves, bel leaves, incense sticks, an earthen lamp, noibiddo, curd, murki, sweets and items needed for Aarati.
Continue Reading...

Nav Durga

No comments:

NAV DURGA (DIFFERENT FORMS OF GODDESS DURGA)

1. Sailaputri:

Goddess Durga’s first form amongst the nine is Sailaputri. She was nomenclatured as Sailaputri after being born in the house of the king of the mountains, Himalaya. In this mold the mother is seen holding a Trishula(Trident) in her right hand and a Lotus in her left and she is mounted on an Ox. In her past life she was the daughter of Daksha, the son of Lord Brahma. She was known as Sati then. As the daughter of Daksha she was married to the God of Gods, Mahadeva.

Daksha once arranged for a ceremony of holy fire (Yagna), and chose not to invite his daughter and son-in-law. Sati was restless to join the ceremony at her Father’s place and being obstinate, she reached there.

On going uninvited to the ceremony, she felt that everyone was giving her a cold shoulder except her Mother who greeted her with a hug. The guests too present in the function were giving disrespectful comments about her Husband. To her surprise her father too was harsh and rude in his approach. She was dejected and was so heart broken that she burnt herself to ash in the holy fire. Shiva, on hearing this incident was enraged and ordered his followers to immediately demolish the Daksha Yagna.

After burning herself to death, Sati was reborn as the daughter of the king of the mountains, Himalaya and became known as Sailaputri. Thus amongst all the nine forms of Devi Durga, Sailaputri is the most powerful and glorified of all. She is worshiped in the first day of the Navratri celebrations. According to the Upanishads this form of Durga broke the pride of the Gods by assuming the mold of Haimabati. Being ashamed they bowed and prayed that, "Thou are Shakti, we all - Brahma, Vishnu and Shiv get Shakti from you."

2. Brahmacharini:

Durga’s second appearance is in the form of Brahmacharini. Here "Brahma" means meditation. That is, the Goddess is the meditator or a practitioner of penance. She is seen here holding a string of rosary beads in her right hand and a Kamandul (an urn containing holy water) in her left hand. In her previous life, when she was reborn as the daughter of Himalaya, she performed severe penance to have Mahadeva as her husband. The sage God Narad advised her to take up meditation to win Shiva. For undergoing strict meditation she was known as Brahmacharini or Tapasyacharini. Ignoring the beating sun and thunder showers, she began a Three Hundred year meditation living only on wood Apple leaves that fell on the forest floor. She furthered her penance making it even stricter by relinquishing food and water for another few Hundred years. As she gave up eating leaves she is also referred to as “Aparna”. Practicing this painstaking contemplation she became weak and skinny. Unable to withstand the plight of her daughter her mother, Manoka requested her to give up her resolution. Shocked at the sight of Durga she exclaimed “ U ma! Na aar naa”. That is why Durga is also called “Uma”. 

On the other hand overwhelmed by Durga’s devotion and perseverance, all the Gods and sages in the heaven were pleased. At last, grandfather Brahma, pleased with devi’s austerities made an oracle, “O maiden! No one could achieve or endure the penance you have performed till date. I am captivated by your meditation and devotion. Your wish will be fulfilled and you will certainly have Shiva as your husband. You may now return home and rest. Your father will come soon to take you.”This form of Durga gives the devotees everlasting success. Worshop of this appearance enriches the faculties of sacrifice, honesty and self-discipline. In times of utter distress the worship of this form gives success and the willpower to come out victorious. This form of Durga is worshiped in the second day of the Durga puja.

3. Chandraghanta:

Mother Durga’s third form is known as Chandraghanta. This name finds its justification in the half moon seen on the temple of the Goddess that resembles a bell. The deity has ten arms. The ten hands of the Goddess brandish ten different weapons. Mounted on a lion this form of the mother is worshiped on the third day of the Navratri celebration. It is believed that a devotee who manages to earn the devi’s blessings can set himself free from his sins and hazards that he has committed or may face in his life. The devotee gains the power to sense the supernatural, to see it and even smell the eternal fragrance. The deity is always envisaged in the fearsome mood of demolishing the evil, her appearance always spreads a calm and eternal peace all round. Mother Chandraghant’s devotees spread peace and happiness wherever they go. We should all whole-heartedly worship the mother with a devoted soul. Worship of the deity helps one eliminate the sorrow, hazards and dangers in ones life.

4. Kushmanda:

The fourth appearance of the devi is in the form of Kushmanda. The mother gets the name as she created the universe with a smile. When there was darkness everywhere and there was no existence of the universe she created the universe with a smile. She is believed to be the source of eternal power. The Goddess has eight arms and that is why she is also known as “Astabhuja”. The deity’s seven hands hold the holy urn (Kamandul), a Bow, an Arrow, a Lotus, a Pot containing nectar, a Sudarshan Chakra  and a Club. The Eighth hand holds a string of rosary beads that is believed to provide success and prudence. Pumpkin is termed as “Kushmando” in Sanskrit. Amongst the sacrificial vegetables that are offered in the worship of the Goddess (naibidhya), pumpkin is the most important vegetable with which Devi Kushmanda is most placated. She is worshiped on the Fourth day of the Navratri celebration abiding by the rituals that are described in the Sashtra and the Purans. Worship of this form of the Devi exterminates sorrow and diseases and augments life, fame and strength. Mother Goddess is appeased with the slightest of devotion and if any one whole-heartedly worships the deity he will certainly gain her favour. 

5. Skandamata:

Fifth form of the mother is known as Skandamata. Kumar Kartik’s other name is Skanda. As devi Durga is the mother of Kartik, she is referred to as “Skandamata”. This form of the deity has four arms. The mother is seen holding her son Skanda with the top right hand and she is holding a lotus in her lower hand. The top left hand is positioned in a blessing gesture and the other hand holds a lotus. The Goddess is fair and sits on a lotus. 

That is why the devi is also known as “Padmasana”. Here she is seen mounted on a lion. If anyone worships her whole-heartedly, she fulfills the wish of the devotee.

6. Katyayani:

Kattayani is the sixth form of Devi Durga. Sage “Kattayan” was the son of the great sage “Kat”. Sage “Kattayan” was born in the “Kattya” clan. He was engaged in rigorous penance and worship of “Bhagabati Paramba”. His prayer was all about requesting the mother to appear in his house-hold as his daughter. Mother “Bhagabati” obliged him. After some time, when, the world was terrorized of Mahisasura, lord Brahma, Vishnu and Maheshwara with their divine powers gave form to a Goddess to combat Asura and destroy him. Kattayan was the first to worship her and that is why she is known as “Devi Kattayani”. It is mentioned in the Shastra that Kattayani was born as the daughter of the sage Kattayan. Taking birth on the Fourteenth day of the new moon in “Ashwin” (September-October), she accepted the worship of the sage Kattayan on Saptami, Astami and Navami and ultimately slew Mahisasura on Dashami. The deity’s complexion is as bright as Gold. She has four hands. The top right hand is positioned in a gesture of providing courage and the other hand is positioned in a gesture of rendering a boon. The top left hand is holding a Sword and the other holding a Lotus. The Goddess is mounted on a Lion and she is worshiped on the sixth day of the Durga puja. If one worships the deity with a pure soul he attains success in religion, wealth, passion and salvation. Disease, sorrow and fear are eliminated. Worship of this deity helps one to emancipate himself from the sin he may have committed over the cycle of his births and rebirths. We should all devote our prayers to the mother to lead a better life. 

7. Kalratri:

Mother Goddess's seventh form is "Kalratri". Her complexion is as dark as the night. Her cascading hair is let loose and she is seen wearing a garland that radiates light as bright as lightning. She is fearsome with her menacing three eyes, radiating fire. She is mounted on an ass. She has four hands, of which, the top right hand is in a gesture of rendering boon to all. The other hand on her right is rendering fearlessness. The top left hand is holding an iron Dagger and the other hand is holding a Sickle. Although she has a menacing appearance, she always delivers favorable results and her devotees need not fear.

She is worshiped on the seventh day of the Durga puja. Devi Kalratri destroys the evil. If anyone whole-heartedly pleads of saving himself from any impending danger, she protects him. As and when the Goddess is called, the evils instantaneously disappear from the place. By the Goddess's grace, the devotees overcome their fear of fire, water, animals and foes. 

8. Mahagauri:

Mother's eighth form is known as "Mahagauri". Her complexion is extremely fair. Her garments are also white. She is mounted on an ox and has four hands. Her top right hand is rendering fearlessness and the hand below holds a trident. The top left hand holds a "Damru" and the hand below is in a gesture of giving a boon. To have Shiva as her husband she went through a rigorous penance in the form of "Parvati". As a result of this arduous meditation her complexion turned dark. Lord Shiva, pleased with the devotion of Parvati, bathed her in the holy water of the Ganges. As she bathed in the holy water she turned fair. From then onwards she became known as "Mahagouri". She is worshiped on the eighth day of the Durga puja. The devotee is benefited on all fronts as he worships the deity. Due to the Goddess's grace the devotee attains supernatural salvation, he is relieved from all his pains and fatigue and can set himself free from his previous sins. He is never faced with sorrow and poverty and never commits any sin. The devotee wins pure and endless virtue.

9. Siddhidatri:

Durga's ninth mold is the form of "Siddhidatri". She delivers success. According to "Markendeo Puran" there are eight types of success, such as "Anima", "Laghima", "Prapti", "Prakashya", "Mahima", "Ishhattya", "Bashittya", "Sarvakaam bashayita" and "Sarvagyata". But in the "Brahmabaibarta Puran" in the "SriKrishna Janmakhanda" there are another ten types of success such as "Dursravan", "Parakayaprabeshan", "Baksiddhi", "Kalpabrikkhatta", "Sristi", "Sanharkaransamartha", "Amaratta", "Sarvanyaykatta", "Bhavna" and "Siddhi". Thus there are eighteen types of successes. Mother Siddhidatri is capable of rendering all these forms of successes to her devotees. According to the Purans, Lord Shiva achieved salvation by the grace of this deity. The deity is seen sometimes sitting on a lotus and sometimes mounted on a lion. She is four armed. The lower right hand of the Goddess holds a disc and the upper right hand holds a club. The lower left hand holds a Shankha(conch shell) and the upper hand holds a Lotus. She is worshipped on the ninth day of the Durga puja. She is the ultimate form of the Goddess among the Navadurga. After having performing the Puja of the other forms of the Goddess according to the rituals mentioned in the Sashtra, the devotee can then start the worship of this Deity. Those who worship the Goddess with full devotion are bestowed with all the success.
Continue Reading...

Origin of Durga

No comments:

Origin of Durga - The Mythology

According to Hindu mythology,Goddess Durga’s miraculous arrival was the tyranny of a demon named Mahishasura. Mahishasur's father Rambha, was King of the Asuras, once fell in love with a Water Buffalo,  and Mahishasur was born out of this union.  He, therefore was able to change between human and buffalo form at will ("mahisha" means buffalo). Despite being a demon (the word asura  means "not-God" and does not have as strong a negative connotation as "demon"), Mahishasura was also pious in  meditation. invincible strength and favor of Lord Shiva after a hard penance and terrific austerities. Lord Shiva, impressed with his devotion, blessed him that no man or deity would be able to kill him and that only a woman can kill him. Mahishasura  was very pleased with this boon as he thought that he can never be defeated by a woman. Arrogant Mahishasura started his reign of terror over the Universe and started killing people mercilessly. He even attacked the Abode of the Gods and conquered the heaven and desired to become their leader

The Birth of Durga

The Gods were afraid from the terror of this wild, destructive water-buffalo bull because most of them were defeated and humiliated by him (Mahishasur).  The Gods took refuge under Lord Brahma, who took them to Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu. The solution was derived by an idea of creation of a woman who possess the ultimate power to fight and vanquish Mahishasur.


At a single point, the divine energy of all the fires coalesced and became Shiva, in the form of a beautiful, magnificent young woman with ten hands. Her face was from the light of Shiva. Her ten arms were from Lord Vishnu. Her legs were from Lord Brahma. Her tresses were formed from the light of Yama, the God of death; the two breasts were formed from the light of Somanath, the Moon God;  the waist from the light of Indra, the king of Gods; the legs and thighs from the light of Varun, the God of Seas; hips from the light of Bhoodev  the God of Earth; the toes from the light of Surya- Sun God; fingers of the hand from the light of the Vasus the children of Goddess river Ganga; and nose from the light of Kuber, the keeper of wealth for the Gods. The teeth were formed from the light of Prajapati, the lord of creatures, the triad of her eyes was born from the light of Agni, the Fire God, the eyebrows from the two Sandhyas  that is sunrise and sunset, the ears from the light of Vaayu, the God of Wind. Thus from the energy of these Gods, Goddess Durga was formed.

The Gods then gave to her their divine gifts: Pinakadhrik gave her a Trishul. Krishna gave her  Sudarshan Chakra. Varuna, the sea, gave her a Shankh and the God of Fire gave her a missile. From the Wind God Vayu, she received  Bow and Arrows. The King of Gods, Indra, gave her a Vajra and also Bell as the symbolic representation   of his white-skinned elephant Airavata. From the God of Death, Yama- Durga received a Iron Rod, and from the Ruler of Waters she was given a Noose.

Durga received many other precious and mystical treasures- Gifts of Jewels, New Clothing, and a Garland of Immortal Lotuses. Heaven's Architect gave her a Bright Axe and Kawach. God of Mountains, Himalaya gave her Jewels and a magnificent Lion to ride into battle. 

Equipped with the fearsome weaponry of the Gods and dressed in golden armor and jewels she set off, seated gracefully upon that lion. His thunderous roars shook the entire Universe. The balance of the Oceans, Mountains, Earth – all attained a new change, as whole new chains of mountains rose, while older ranges crumbled, cracked, and gave way to dust, water from the Oceans rippling in waves through all the 3 Worlds. Mahishasura and his Demon Allies found their attention drawn from Heaven to Earth. Though confident of their power and control in Heaven, even the conquering Demon host could not help being awestruck. 

In the battlefield:

The Demons had little time to take a glance on the radiant visage of their new adversary, because she engaged them on the battlefield. First the army of Chikasura and then of Chamara- Mahishasura's chief commander came to confront the deity. They were destroyed in a great battle. At first, confident of his overwhelming power, Mahishasura was sure to defeat the Goddess, but seeing the setbacks being dealt his commander's troops on every side, it soon became obvious to Mahishasura that  he would surely be cast out  from Heaven.

Onto the battlefield swarmed that most despised assemblage of Demons, wielding their unearthly collection of weapons. Leading this evil array in its mad and desperate charge were thousands of charioteers and cavalry of horses and elephants.

Surrounded by chants of praise, the blowing of horns the beating of drums and songs of worship Goddess Durga roamed the battlefield on her mighty lion. From her divine breath her army was constantly replenished with new warriors, each able, brave and resolute. 

With her bell she confused the Demons, and many were dragged away bound and chained. With her divine sword she cut them to bits. Demons and elephants and horses died and a river of blood flowed across the battlefield

Death of Mahishsura

Mahish, the king of the demons and usurper of the throne of Heaven, was shocked and enraged by the disastrous events on the battlefield. He reverted to his own form, a buffalo, and charged about on the battlefield. He ran wildly at Durga's divine soldiers goring many, biting others and all the while thrashing with his long, whip-like tail. Durga's lion, angered by the presence of the demon-buffalo, attacked him. While Mahishasura was struggling with the lion, Durga threw her noose around his neck. To escape this trap, he discarded the buffalo disguise and assumed the form of a lion. Durga beheaded the lion, and the demon escaped in the form of a man. Without hesitation, Durga dispatched the man with a flight of sharp arrows. Yet again the demon escaped, and this time took the formidable shape of a huge elephant, which battered Durga's lion with a tusk. With her sword Durga hacked at the tusk until it too was broken. 

Weakened, the Demon reverted once more to his own form the wild buffalo. He retreated into the mountains where he hurled boulders at Durga with his horns. The Mother of the Universe drank the Divine Nectar, gift of Kubera. She jumped on Mahishasura pushing him to the ground with her left
leg. She grasped his head in one hand, pierced him with her sharp spear held in another, and with yet another of her ten hands she wielded her bright sword, beheading him. At last he fell dead, and the scattered surviving remnants of his once invincible army fled in terror. 

The Gods returned to heaven, and along with the sages of the earth, they sang praises for Goddess Durga. Henceforth, and to this day, the Goddess Durga is worshipped by all the Gods in heaven, and all human beings on earth. Mahishasura is there too--frozen in his moment of final defeat, impaled by Durga's spear and prostrate beneath her left foot.
Continue Reading...

108 Names of Durga

1 comment:

108 NAMES OF DURGA

The sloka of 108 popular names of Goddess Durga is daily recited by her devotees. The names and the meanings of the names are -



Sl. No.  Durga Name  Meaning 
1 Durga The Inaccessible
2 Akashagamini Move In the sky
3 Arogyada Granter Of Good Health
4 Asurakshayamkari Who reduced the number Of Demons
5 Ataviduhkhandhara Rakshika Protects the Ignorant And Distressed
6 Ayurda Granter Of Longevity
7 Balarkasadrushakara Like The Rising Sun
8 Bandhananashini One who detaches the Attachments
9 Bhaktavatsala Bestower Of Devotees
10 Bhayanashini Destroyer Of Fear
11 Bhootanushruta Well-Wisher Of Bhootaganas
12 Brahmacharini One who seeks for Brahman
13 Chandravispardimukha Beautiful Like The Moon
14 Chaturbhuja Who has four arms
15 Chaturvakttra Who has four faces
16 Daya Compassionate
17 Devi  The Deity
18 Dhanakshayanashini Controller Of Wealth Decrease
19 Dhanurdharini Who holds the Bow
20 Dhruti Valiant
21 Divamalya Vibhooshita Ornamented with beautiful garlands
22 Divyambaradhara Beautifully Robed
23 Durga Who can remove Distress
24 Durga Deity Durga
25 Hri Holy Chant Of Hymns
26 Indradhwaja Samabahudharini Whose shoulders like Indra's Flag
27 Jaya Who can gain the victory over all
28 Jyotsana Radiant Like Flames
29 Kali Goddess of Death
30 Kali Dark-Complexioned
31 Kamacharini Acting On One's Own Accord
32 Kamsavidravanakari Who made a threat to Kamsa
33 Kantha Radiance
34 Kanttadhara One who holds Shiva's neck
35 Kaumaravratadhara Observer Of Fasts Like Young Girls Do
36 Keyurangadadharini Ornamented with Armlets And Bracelets
37 Khadgaketaka Dharini Who hold Sword And Shield
38 Khama Forgiveness
39 Krishna Sister of Krishna
40 Krishna Dark-Complexioned
41 Krishnachhavisama Similar with Krishna's Radiance
42 Kriti Who gain fame over
43 Kulavardhini Progressor of the Race
44 Kumari Young and Virgin Girl
45 Kundalapurnakarna Vibhooshita Wearer Of Earrings which Covers The ears
46 Mahachakradharini Who holds the Chakra
47 Mahakali Mahakala's wife
48 Mahishasuranashini Destroyer of the great demon Mahisha
49 Mamsapriya Who is fond of flesh
50 Mangalya Auspicious, Sacred
51 Mati Wise
52 Mayoora Pichhavalaya Adorned with Peacock-Feathered Bangles
53 Mohanashini One who destroys the Desires
54 Mruthyunashini Destroyer Of Death
55 Mukutavirajita Adorned with a Shining Crown 
56 Nagararakshika Protects the Land
57 Nandagopakulajata Daughter of the Nandagopa Race
58 Narayanavarapriya In liking of Narayana's Boons
59 Nitya Eternal and universal
60 Padmapatrakshi Eyes Like The Beauty of Lotus Leaf
61 Pankajadharini One who holds the Lotus
62 Papadharini Bearer of others' faults
63 Papaharini Destroyer Of all Sins
64 Pashadharini One who holds the rope
65 Pashupriya Who is fond of all beings
66 Patradharini One who holds the Vessels
67 Peenashroni Payodhara Large Bosomed
68 Prabha Pre-Dawn hours
69 Prasanna Cheerfulness
70 Pravasarakshika Protects the Travellers
71 Purnachandra Nibhanana Beautiful Like The Full Moon
72 Putrapamrityunashini Sustainer Of Son's Untimely Death
73 Rajyada Bestower Of Kingdom
74 Ratri Night, darkness
75 Sagaragirirakshika Protects over the Seas And Hills
76 Sandhya Twilight,Evening
77 Sangramajayaprada Granter Of victory In the war
78 Sangramarakshika Protects the Wars
79 Sankarshanasamanana Equal to Sankarshana
80 Santati Who grants all issues
81 Sarvakaryasiddhi Pradayika One who grants Success In All Attempts
82 Saukhyada Bestower Of Well-Being
83 Seedupriya Who is fond of drinks
84 Sharanya Who can grant Refuge
85 Shatrusankata Rakshika Protects the Distressed from the foes
86 Shikhipichhadwaja Virajita Having Peacock-Feathered Flag
87 Shilathata Vinikshibda At the time of birth, slammed by Kamsa
88 Shiva Auspicious,Sacred
89 Shiva Shiva's better half
90 Shree Sacred
91 Siddhi Having all Success
92 Surashreshtta Supreme among the Celestials
93 Sutada Granter Of all Issues
94 Trailokyarakshini Protector Of The Sargya, Martya, Patal
95 Tribhuvaneshwari Goddess of Sargya, Martya and Patal
96 Tridashapujita The Goddess Of The Celestials
97 Tridivabhavayirtri Goddess Of Sargya, Martya, Patal
98 Vapurda Granter Of Beautiful Appearance
99 Varada One who grants the Boons
100 Varada Bestower of all
101 Varada Bestower
102 Vasudevabhagini Sister Of Vasudeva
103 Vidhya Wisdom
104 Vijaya Who can conquer over all
105 Vindhyavasini` Resident Of The Vindhyas
106 Vividayudhadhara One who carries various Weapons
107 Vyadhinashini Vanquisher Of Ailments
108 Yashodagarba Sambhoota Coming out from Yashoda's Womb
Besides these 108 names, Durga is also called by many other names, such as, Rati, Barani, Tamasi, Nanda, Tulsi Devi, Roudri, Naini Devi etc.
Continue Reading...

The Rituals of Durga Puja

No comments:

The Rituals of Durga Puja

The festival of Durga Puja starts with Mahalaya, the first phase of the waxing moon in Aswin. Thousands offer prayers to their ancestors at the city's river banks, this ritual is called Tarpan. The inauguration of the Goddess idol starts on Mahashasthi. The main puja is for three days - Mahasaptami, Mahaastami, Mahanavami. The puja rituals are long and very detailed and complicated. Three days of Mantras and Shlokas and Aarati and offerings - needs an expert priest to do the Puja. Because of these facts, the number of Pujas held in the family has reduced and Durga Puja has mostly emerged as a community festival.

Mahashashthi
On this day Goddess Durga arrives to the mortal world from her heavenly abode, accompanied by her children. She is welcomed with much fanfare amidst the beats of dhak. Unveiling the face of the idol is the main ritual on this day. Kalaparambho, the ritual performed before the commencement of the puja precedes Bodhon, Amontron and Adibas.


Mahasaptami
Saptami is the first day of Durga puja. Kolabou or Nabapatrika is given a pre-dawn bath. This is an ancient ritual of worshiping nine types of plants.

The nine plants comprising Nabapatrika are:
Banana plant "Kola Gaach"
Turmeric plant " Halud Gaach"
Jayanti tree
Wood apple tree " Bel Ghaach"
Pomegranate tree " Daalim Gaach"  
Arum plant "Maankochu" 
Rice plant
Ashoka tree
The nine plants of Nabapatrika represent the nine Goddesses. The Banana plant or the "Kola Gaach" represents Goddess Brahmani, Colacassia plant represents Goddess Kalika, Turmeric plant symbolises Devi Durga, Jayanti denotes Kartiki, Bel or wood apple Goddess Shiva, Pomegranate (Dalim Gaach) Raktadantika, Ashoka tree symbolises Sokrahita and Arum plant ("Maankochu") represents Chamunda and the Rice plant Goddess Lakshmi.    These Goddesses are the nine forms of Devi Durga.

Bathing Ritual of Mahasaptami:
In the early hours of Saptami, the twigs of white "aparajita" plant  along with  nine bunches of yellow threads are used to tie the Nabapatrika. It is then bathed. In our scriptures the elaborate bathing ritual of nabapatrika is compared with the coronation of a King. Just like the King is bathed with waters from holy places and oceans, bathing nabapatrika too requires the same. All the nine Goddesses representing nabapatrika are bathed with waters from 8 different holy places. This bathing ritual is accompanied with varied mantras and diverse musical instruments for different goddesses. (*bathing rituals). The main Saptami Puja follows Kalparambho and Mahasnan.  

Mahaastami
The day begins with a recital of Sanskrit Hymns in community Puja Pandals as thousands of devotees offers Puspanjali to the Goddess. Kumari Puja or the worship of little girls as the mother goddess is a special part of the rituals performed in a number of traditional and household pujas. As the day passed on, it was time for the important Sandhi Puja, which marks the inter-link of the Maha Ashtami and Maha Navami.

Sandhipuja
: An integral and important part of Durga Puja, Sandhi Puja is performed at the juncture of the 8th and 9th lunar day. Sandhi puja lasts from the last 24 minutes of Ashtami till the first 24 minutes of Nabami. During this juncture  (the "Sandhikhan"), Durga is worshipped in her Chamunda form. Devi Durga killed, Chando and Mundo, at the juncture of the 8th and 9th lunar day, known as "Sandhikhan" and thus acquired the name of "Chamunda".

Mahanavami
This is the concluding day of Durga Puja. The main Navami puja begins after the end of Sandhi Puja. The Navami Bhog is offered to the goddess. This is later partaken as prasad by the devotees.

Dashami
After the three days of Puja, in Dashami , in the last day, a tearful farewell is offered to the Goddess. Most of the community pujas postpone the farewell as long as possible and arrange a grand send-off. The images are carried in processions around the locality and finally is immersed in a nearby river or lake. Vijaya Dashami is an event celebrated all over the country.

Sindur Khela (Vermillion game)-
It's also one of the events on the day of Dashami. After Ma Durga is immersed married Bengali women apply vermilion to each other.


Durga Puja Fast Rituals

The custom of observing Durga Puja Fast is particularly prevalent in Northern India. In the state of Punjab people observe fast for seven days of the nine-day-long Durga Puja Festival. The fast is broken only on the ashtami or navmi day. Some devotees of Durga Ma consume only milk during the fasting days while some only live on fruits. Some devotees observe ‘Ekana’ which means that they take one complete meal during the day. Non-vegetarian food, intoxicating substances and other forms of entertainment are completely avoided during the fasting days. Men observing fast are not supposed to shave. Some also believe in sleeping on the ground and thereby deny themselves all luxuries and comforts. Fasting during Durga Puja festival is also quite popular in the state of West Bengal and several other Southern states. At the end of the fasting period devotees feed beggars and worship little girls who spell the Shakti of Mother Goddess. At several places there is a tradition of sowing barley seeds during the Durga Puja fasting period. In this a small bed of mud is prepared in a little container and barley seeds are sown in it. This is placed in the Puja room and cared for during the fasting period. At the end of the fast the shoots reach a height of 3-5 inches. These are pulled out and given to devotees as form of blessings.
Continue Reading...