Why is Navratri celebrated?

16 10 2012

Navratri festival starts today and Jaipurites give a sparkling welcome to it. Navratri is a festival of complete devotion, fasting, fun and enjoyment. The festival is celebrated for Nine days and it symbolizes victory of good over evil. During these nine days, nine forms of goddess are worshipped.

But do you all know the story behind Navratri?? Let’s see why the festival is celebrated.

Story

The legend of Navratri goes back to the time, when mighty demon Mahishasur worshipped Lord Shiva and obtained the power of eternity. Very soon he started misusing his power, killing innocent people and set out to win all three loks. Everybody was traumatized and the Gods appealed to Lord Shiva to get rid of Mahishasur. For this, all three trinity, Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva combined their powers and created a divine female power, Durga. She was beautiful and Mahishasur got completely magnetized. He approached Goddess Durga with an intention to marry her. Goddess Durga accepted this proposal with a condition that Mahishasur should defeat her in a battle. He agreed. The fierce battle took place for 9 days, and at the end of ninth day goddess Durga conquered Mahishasur. The nine nights came to be known as Navratri and the tenth day came to be known as Vijaydashmi or Dussehra.

Celebration in Jaipur

Jaipur celebrates this festival with a lot of fanfare. People clad themselves in new clothes. During the nine days, they worship the different forms of Goddess Durga. Jaipur witnesses nine days of complete devotion that can be seen in almost all temples of mother goddess and nine nights of absolute enjoyment with Dandiya Ras.  There are a number of customs and rituals performed during this festival. A large number of devotees observe fasts. They also offer prayers and offer other things to the Goddess. After the puja, they eat these as ‘prasad’.

On this day huge effigies of Ravana, Meghnath and Kumbhkaran are burnt, after enacting a small part from Ramayana. People enjoy it a lot and gather in large numbers in various grounds to see it.

Food

A variety of dishes are made and served during this festival. Special Navratri cuisine is a part of the multitude of culinary delights of the country. Specific ingredients and vegetables are used for preparing delicious recipes on Navratri. The choice of vegetables may vary from region to region. Spices are restricted to red chillies, turmeric and cumin seeds and only rock salt can be used. However, one can eat milk, curd, fruits and nuts.

Celebrate Navratri to the fullest with colorful Dandiya nights and delicious cuisine this season 🙂

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