This year, 10 October 2018 marks the beginning of Navratri. According to Hindu culture, Navratri marks the most auspicious days of the lunar calendar. This festival is celebrated with zeal and enthusiasm throughout the country. However, it is known by different names in different regions of India.
The festivity marks the celebrations of good over evil. It is one of the most important festivals celebrated in the country. All the nine days of the festival are dedicated to a distinct avatar of Goddess Durga and have a special color associated with it.
If you are planning to mark a visit to India, make sure you plan your visit around Navratri as this will help you explore the beauty of the country. Around this time, the festivity, celebrations, and weather are perfect to explore the country.
- South India
- North India
- East India
- West India
In South India, the festival is known as Golu. The first three days are dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi, the following three days are dedicated to Maa Durga and the last three days are dedicated to Goddess Saraswati. During this time, hundreds of idols are purchased and arranged at home, temples, and shops.
Several villages of South Tamil Nadu organize music and dance festivals where performers paint themselves in bright yellow and black colors to resemble a tiger. They wear ankle-bells and hold silambu in their hands while performing.
In Karnataka, the festival is celebrated with fervor and grandeur. The legendary place at Mysore is beautifully decorated and large elephants adorned with jewelry and beautiful clothes are brought in. The entire Mysore is decorated and illuminated, while sports events, cultural events, and exhibitions are also held.
In North India, Navratri concludes with the celebration of Dussehra on the 10th day. It is a Hindu festival that marks the victory of King Rama over demon Ravana. Lord Rama is one of the most revered gods in the Hindu culture. He is known for truth and honesty.
Dussehra celebrations are marked by burning huge effigies of demon king Ravana. Dussehra also marks the victory of Arjuna over 10000s of Kauravas thus depicting the victory of good over evil.
In East India, the festival is celebrated as Durga Pooja. The celebrations mark the victory of Goddess Durga over buffalo demon, Mahishasura. This festival also marks the goddess as the motherly power behind all life and creation.
While the primary deity during the celebrations is Maa Durga, she shares her stage and celebrations with other major Hindu deities such as goddess Lakshmi, goddess Saraswati god Ganesha and god Kartikeya. If you happen to be in Kolkata during Durga Pooja, you will witness swarms of Goddess Durga idols all over the city.
In West India, Garba, the dance festival is celebrated with zeal and enthusiasm. This is an amazingly fun festival that is adorned by food, dance, and festivity. You will find people happily dancing the night away in beautiful attire and two decorated sticks.
Garba originated in the state of Gujarat and many traditional Garbas are performed around a statue of the Goddess Shakti. The dance is performed to honor Goddess Durga, the feminine form of divinity.
Now that you know how different parts of India celebrate the nine auspicious days, are you going to keep a fast and celebrate Navratri?
Watch out for this space as for the next nine days, we will be posting a blog every day helping you know more about this amazing Hindu festival.