Navratri is one of the most famous Hindu festivals which is celebrated not only in India but all across the globe. The word Navratri is derived from two Sanskrit words—'nava' meaning nine and 'ratri' meaning night. This festival celebrates the defeat of Mahishasura by Goddess Durga and signifies the victory of good over evil. In many parts of India people fast for seven days and break it on the last day of Navratri, only after performing puja. Garba is performed in large groups, while people rejoice this fun-filled festival with their friends and family.
When is Navratri 2020?
This year the nine-day festival would be observed from Oct 17 to October 25. According to the Hindu Panchang, this year Navratri will begin on the Pratipada date of the Shukla Paksha of Ashwin month, which falls on October 17. The auspicious puja time of the first day of Navratri is from 6:23 am to 10:30 pm. Here is the day wise puja schedule for Navratri 2020-
On 17th October 2020- Pratipada Ghatasthapana
On 18th October 2020- Dwitiya Maa Brahmacharini Puja
On 19th October 2020- Maa Chandraghanta Puja
On 20th October 2020- Chaturthi Maa Kushmanda Puja
On the 21st October 2020- Panchami Maa Skandamata Puja
On the 22nd October 2020- Shashthi Maa Katyayani Puja
On the 23rd October 2020- Saptami Maa Kalratri Puja
On the 24th October 2020- Ashtami Maa Mahagauri Durga Maha Navami Puja
On the 25th October 2020- Navami Maa Siddhidatri Navratri Paran Vijay Dasham
History of Navratri
The legend associated with Navratri is associated with the great battle that took place between the demon named Mahishasura and Goddess Durga. Mahishasura was said to be blessed with immortality by Lord Brahma under one condition that he could be defeated only by a woman.
The blessing of immortality got to his head and filled him with evil intentions. Mahishasura then went on to attack Trilok--earth, heaven and hell. Since only a woman could defeat him, even the Gods didn't stand a chance against him. The worried Gods prayed to Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva and sought their help to defeat Mahishasura.
Lord Vishu took the decision to create a woman to defeat Mahishasura. He created the powerful Goddess Durga. Then Lord Shiva and Lord Brahma also put together all their powers in the Goddess.
Durga fought with Mahishasura relentlessly and the battle went on for 15 long dasys. It was a fight that shook the entire Trilok. During the fight, the clever Mahishasura kept changing his forms to confuse his opponent Goddess Durga. Ultimately, when the demon took the form of a buffalo, Goddess Durga pierced his chest with her 'trishul', which finally killed him.
This marked the end of the demon and marked the victory of the good over the evil.
Facts about Navratri
On each day of Navaratri different avatars of Goddess Durga are worshipped. On the first day, people worship Goddess Shailputri while Goddess Brahmacharini is worshipped on the second day. On the third day, people pay homage to Goddess Chandraghanta and on the fourth day Goddess Kushmanda is worshipped. The fifth day is marked by worshipping Goddess Skandamata, while on the sixth day Goddess Katyayani is worshipped. On the seventh day, Goddess Kaalratri is worshipped and on the eighth day Goddess Mahagauri is worshipped. On the last and final day of Navratri, people worship Goddess Siddhidatri.
How is it celebrated?
Navratri is usually celebrated by fasting, worshiping devi ma, doing garba and wearing clothes of different colours for each day of Navratri. The colour schedule for Navratri 2020 is here-
On the 17th Oct it is red colour which means action
On the 18th Oct it is blue which means tranquillity
On the 19th Oct it is yellow colour which signifies beauty
On the 20th Oct it is green which signifies creativity
On the 21st Oct it is grey which signifies protection
On the 22nd Oct it is orange colour which means ferocity
On the 23rd Oct it is white colour which signifies prayer and peace
On the 24th Oct it is pink colour which signifies positivity
On the 25th Oct it is light blue colour which signifies nature
So, enjoy this Navratri with your friends and family by eating your favourite sweets, doing garba and wearing colourful attires.