October 24, 2020 12:37:44 pm
By Nalini Ramachandran
It was on the tenth day of her battle with the buffalo-demon Mahishasura that Durga (as Katyayani) had killed him. This victory of excellent over evil is well known in distinctive methods on Dussehra. Folks imagine that starting new duties on this present day brings luck. Some folks carry out a pooja of their autos and home equipment (fridge, washer, and many others.).
Most individuals worship the goddess (as Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati) and her sons on this present day. They imagine that the goddess and her sons go to her dad and mom throughout Navaratri. Since devotees are additionally her household, she lives of their properties too. On Dussehra, the three deities depart for his or her house on Mount Kailash. Folks make sacred meals choices, take their idols out in a procession and at last immerse them in a river or lake. Because the clay idols dissolve within the water, they turn into soil or the earth as soon as once more. Some imagine the household travels again to Mount Kailash by way of water.
Navaratri mainly celebrates Durga and Nava Durga. However folks throughout the nation additionally honour native or regional types of the goddess, particularly on Dussehra.
Mardani Dussehra, Maharashtra
Many moons in the past, Khandoba (an avatar of Shiva) and Mhalsa Devi (a type of Parvati) had fought two demon-brothers named Mani and Malla at a spot known as Kade Pathar close to Jejuri metropolis in Maharashtra. When the 2 deities started dwelling there, a Khandoba temple was constructed on the website. For years, a devotee from a close-by village visited the temple day by day. However when he grew outdated, he requested the deities to come back and stay in his village.
They agreed, however instructed the outdated man, ‘Maintain strolling. Don’t look again, or be iffy, for we’ll be gone in a jiffy.’ The outdated man accepted the situation.
However, after strolling for some time, he couldn’t assist however suppose, Are they nonetheless following me? I ought to flip and test simply as soon as! The second he turned, the gods vanished, forsaking two egg-shaped stones. And so, at that very spot, the second and new temple known as Jejuri Gadkot was constructed.
Yearly, on the day after Dussehra, the 2 units of idols (from Kade Pathar temple and Jejuri Gadkot) are carried by devotees in enormous palanquins to a gathering level. All through, the devotees scatter turmeric powder (which is pricey to Khandoba) and distribute ‘apta’ leaves. The hilly path and the various steps that they need to climb on the way in which are a activity for the group from Jejuri Gadkot. However the greater, and extra superb, feat is carrying the palanquin that weighs round 5 to 6 tonnes, whereas making the troublesome journey on foot. That’s like lifting a completely grown African elephant and carrying it throughout a hilly path!
As soon as the assembly of the deities is over, the palanquins are taken again to their respective temples. At Jejuri Gadkot, then begins an odd sword-lifting competitors known as Mardani Dussehra. Folks attempt to present how robust they’re, by lifting this sword (which weighs round 42 kg) with their mouth or enamel, or holding it in a single hand for the longest time.
Madikeri Dasara, Karnataka
Each area of Karnataka celebrates Dussehra in a particular method. A parade of ten mantapas (floats), every reaching a peak of round 25 ft, makes up the primary occasion at Madikeri Dasara-just just like the parade of floats you see on Republic Day. Each Dasara float has a big stage, on which life-sized idols rotate and transfer, depicting a mythological story (largely associated to Durga and Nava Durga).
In Mangaluru, younger boys and males paint their faces and our bodies to seem like a tiger. Dressed as tigers, they dance and carry out acrobatic stunts in honour of the native goddess Sharada (a type of Saraswati). Often called Hulivesha (in Kannada, huli is ‘tiger’ and vesha is ‘gown’), this dance is a tribute to the goddess from her vahana-the tiger!
Mysuru Dasara, Karnataka
Mysuru will get its title from Mahisha, for he’s mentioned to have lived and dominated right here. So, Mahisha ooru turned ‘Mysuru’ over time. Mahishasura’s statue stands tall close to the Chamundeshwari Temple in Mysuru. Folks imagine that he was slayed by Durga within the type of Chamundeshwari. Mysuru Dasara, which is the Nadahabba (state pageant), consists of sports activities competitions, meals festivals, flower exhibits and folks performances. The Mysuru Palace is lit up with round 1,00,000 lights. The spotlight is Jumbo Savari, a procession of elephants the place the lead elephant carries Chamundeshwari’s idol.
Vidyarambham, South India
On Vijaya Dashami, folks in Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu observe a convention known as Vidyarambham (starting of information). Youngsters under the age of 5 start to study music, dance or language. Children write the primary few letters of the alphabet (of their mom tongue) on grains of rice unfold out on a plate. Since Ganesha is the god of writing, his title or a Ganesha mantra is written on the tongue of a child, with a gold ring, by a priest, guru or an aged member of the family.
Kulasekarapattinam Dasara, Tamil Nadu
Throughout Dussehra, a mass fancy gown occasion takes place in Kulasekarapattinam city, exterior the Mutharamman Temple (devoted to Goddess Mutharamman). Dressed up like divine beings (particularly the Nava Durga), with a number of faux arms jutting out of their painted our bodies, a number of devotees beg for alms. This act urges them to all the time lead a easy life, similar to the goddess.
Teppotsavam, Andhra Pradesh
On Dussehra, the Kanaka Durga temple in Andhra Pradesh holds a splendid procession of the goddess over the waters of the Krishna River. This occasion is named Teppotsavam. Kanaka Durga’s idol is taken across the river thrice, in a adorned, lit-up, swan-shaped boat known as Hamsa Vahanam. Many individuals collect round nightfall on the banks of the river to observe this spectacle.
Bastar Dussehra, Chhattisgarh
In Chhattisgarh’s Bastar area, Navaratri and Dussehra festivities collectively final for 75 days! Since folks imagine that Sati’s daant (tooth) had fallen on this area, they name the goddess Danteshwari! The spotlight of Bastar Dussehra is the procession of Danteshwari’s idol on an eight-wheeled chariot, which is sort of 25 ft lengthy and is pulled by way of the streets by round 2000 folks.
Dashain, North-East India
In Sikkim, Meghalaya and Mizoram, the pageant is well known as Dashain by Nepal’s Gorkha group, who got here to India through the British rule. On the time of ghatasthapana, as an alternative of seven or 9 varieties of seeds, the folks solely sow jamara (barley) seeds. Linge Ping, a conventional bamboo swing (not often seen or used these days), is specifically constructed for Dashain. Curiously, kids and grown-ups should stand on it, not sit, to make it swing. On the pageant’s seventh day, the folks observe ‘phoolpatti’, a singular apply the place leaves from 9 varieties of vegetation are picked and worshipped. These are immersed, together with the jamara shoots and the idol, on the final day.
Bijoya Dashami, East India
Folks within the jap states, particularly Odisha and West Bengal, observe an analogous custom. On the seventh day of Navaratri, they carry out the nabapatrika pooja, the place ‘9 varieties of leaves’ are bathed with sacred waters and worshipped. Every kind of leaf stands for a selected type of Durga: the banana plant symbolizes the goddess Brahmani, colocasia is Kalika, turmeric is Durga, jayanti represents Kartiki, bael stands for Shiva, pomegranate for Rakta Dantika, ashoka is Sokrahita, arum is Chamunda and rice stalks signify Lakshmi. These are tied along with the aparajita plant and draped in a saree, to seem like a bride. Folks imagine that this bouquet of leaves, too, is Durga. They name this leafy type of the goddess Kola Bou (banana bride). With the goddess’s idol, the nabapatrika are additionally immersed in water on Dussehra or Bijoya Dashami.
Dussehra celebrations present how a lot the nation’s folks adore and respect the goddess. Be it as a demon-slayer, universe protector or boon giver, Durga is beloved and worshipped by many. So, the subsequent time you have a good time Navaratri, Durga, the Nava Durga, her different types and her powers, you’ll know why all of them maintain a particular place in India.
(Excerpted with permission from Nava Durga: The 9 Types of the Goddess by Nalini Ramachandran, illustrated by Priyanka Pachpande, revealed by Puffin Books.)
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