Navratri is celebrated twice in a year as one of the most important Hindu festivals. The festival of Navratri is celebrated twice annually during the months of March-April and September-October. Navratri celebrates the triumph of good over evil and the victory of Goddess Durga over the demon Mahishasura.
The nine-day festival occurs twice a year because it honors the prominent transition points of the seasons – spring and autumn. The spring Navratri signifies the end of winter and the beginning of summer while the autumn Navratri marks the transition from monsoon to winter. Both Navratri celebrations emphasize new beginnings and have their own rituals, traditions, and significance.
By celebrating the festival of Navratri twice in a year, devotees believe they receive twice the blessing of Goddess Durga’s protective energy. The festival carries profound spiritual meaning for Hindus by serving as an opportunity to get closer to the Mother Goddess and reaffirm faith in Dharma or righteous conduct.
Why We Celebrate Navratri
Navratri as the name suggests nine-day festival these nine days and nine nights worship every nine forms of the goddess mother. On the very first day of Navratri, there is Goddess’s establishment. On the eighth night goddess vigil happens and at the end of the 9th day the goddess-given a grand farewell. In all nine days Goddess Tulsi plant worship.
There is one more reason to celebrate the Navratri and that is the Birthday of Lord Rama. Even according to Hindu mythology first Navratri of Chaitra month is the beginning of the new year of the Hindu month. Even this Navratri is celebrated in different ways even known by different names in Maharashtra celebrated as Gudi padwa, Kashmiri Hindus celebrate it as Navreh and in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Karnataka celebrate it by the name Ugadi. It is celebrated on lord Rama’s birthday so that’s why this festival also called Rama Navratri
Every Nine-day a new form of the goddess is worshipped, according to the Hindu month calendar in Chaitra and Ashwin month Navratri comes and yes Navratri comes twice a year.
In this blog, we study why Navratri is celebrated for 9 days and why Navratri is celebrated twice in a year
Why Navratri is celebrated for 9 days?
As we study above Navratri comes in twice a year first is Chaitra Navratri. And second is Sharad Navratri. Although there are Asaad Navratri, Pausha Navratri, and Magha Navratri the Chaitra and Sharad Navratri are celebrated pompously in Hinduism. Devotees fast for 9 days.
On both Navratri, there is the worship of 9 forms of a goddess 9 days let’s see on which day which forms of the goddess are worshipped.
If we see two things are common both come in season changes Chaitra Navratri comes before summer and Sharad Navratri comes before the winter.
In this nine-night and 10-day festival, we celebrate the victory of evil over good.
Navratri brings happiness, positivity, and a sign of welcoming a new season with a good heart.
Each of the nine days of Navratri carries spiritual significance and celebrates various attributes of the Divine Mother. Here is an overview:
Day 1 – Goddess Shailputri is worshipped as the absolute form of Mother Nature.
The very first day of Navratri goddess Shailputri who is the form of the daughter of the mountain’s king. Parvati is a recaption of Lord Shiva and also personates the equal power of Threeness divine of Brahma, Vishnu, and Mahesh.
Day 2 – Goddess Brahmacharini invoked for knowledge, wisdom, peace, and prosperity.
The auspicious second day of Navratri maa Brhamcharini is to be worshipped to attain moksha and also the symbol of peace and happiness. Maa Brahamcharini is the incarnation of Goddess Durga.
Day 3 – Goddess Chandraghanta is venerated as the fierce protector and giver of bravery.
Maa Chandra ghanta provides motivation for the fight against evil. Symbol of strength and prosperity.
Day 4 – Goddess Kushmanda is worshipped as the creator of the universe.
Maa Kush Manda the mata is to be worshipped on the fourth day of Navratri. Who is considered the generator of the universe?
Day 5 – Goddess Skandamata honored as the mother of Lord Kartikeya.
On the fifth day of Navratri, Goddess Skandmata is to be worshipped. Who is the symbol of the mother? As a mother takes care of her children Goddess Skandmata saves her devotees from any evil or permeability. Goddess Skandmata is the mother of Lord Kartikeya
Day 6 – Goddess Katyayani praised for illuminating courage and power to defeat evil.
On the sixth day of Navratri is to be worshipped by Goddess Katyani. Maa Katyani was born from the anger of God. Anger against evil and support for good. She is a symbol of courage
Day 7 – Goddess Kalaratri invoked as the destroyer of darkness.
The seventh day of Navratri is to be worshipped Maa Kalratri. Maa Kala Ratri has two forms one is fierce and the second one is tranquil or calm. As the name suggests maa Kalratri is a light of darkness in which the whole universe is covered.
Day 8 – Goddess Mahagauri is worshipped as the purest form epitomizing tranquility.
The eighth day is Maha Gauri worshipped in Navratri symbol of prosperity, calmness, liberalization, and principle.
Day 9 – Goddess Siddhidatri is praised as the giver of spiritual attainment and perfection.
At the end of Navratri, Maa Siddhidatri is the symbol of perfection as her name suggests Siddhi means perfection and also has the power of healing whether mentally or physically.
This nine-night festival allows devotees to venerate the full spectrum of the Divine Mother’s blessings. Each goddess and her special powers are glorified.
How should perform pooja of Navratri
Here, we share some steps on how should you do worship for the Navratri installation of Goddess Durga. Kalash Sthapna, other rituals. Farewell to goddess
Preparation of what you need to do.
- Red mat
- Ready lamp
- Holy thread
- Mata Durga idol
- Clay water pot
- Mata ka shringar
- Dry fruit packet
- Holy jal
- Katha book
- Incense stick
How to exact of performing puja of Goddess Durga in Navratri
- Before doing any puja it’s a rule that we need to clean the place and we are just not cleaning the place we weeding out the negativity from our door and entering the positivity.
- Place a chowki on the floor and lay a red mat on it and then keep the Goddess Durga’s idol or picture frame.
- Then take the name of Lord Ganesh or Vighnaharta, and take the name also of your guru and isht dev, and then install clay water pot on chowki. Near the right-hand side of the goddess Durga idol.
- The water pot should be half of the water and 2 -3 tablespoons of Ganga Jal or holy water put vermillion in the clay water pot then put mango tree leaves in the clay water pot or Kalash and then keep coconut bind with red chuniri or holy thread and in a thread while binding keep 1 almond, 2 supari and keep some shagun rupees like what you want to keep by your heart.
- Put the garland to Goddess Durga and decorate her with flowers
- Apply the vermillion to the idol of Goddess Durga, Kalash, lamp, and nariyal
- Keep all fruits and dry fruits on a plate if it is of silver or copper then it’s better
- Then take the name of all forms of Goddess Durga. And lighting lamps and incense sticks
- Keep an empty plate before you, and make a Satya on the plate for invocation.
- Chants all mantras of Goddess Durga by keeping a flower in your hand and finally after completing the mantra leave flowers on the plate
- Do Navratri Katha and perform the aarti of Goddess. In the same way, keep flowers in your hand and keep your hand in Namaskaram mudra keep your eyes closed. Complete concentrate on Goddess.
- In the last offer prasad to God and then distribute among all devote or family.
- Keep this daily for 9 days
- At the end of the day invite 9 baby girls to your home offer prasad to them, touch their feet, and then farewell to them with happiness. Because the girls consider being a form of Devi Durga.
- Same as the water of a pot to plant Tulsi or any other.
- And narial take as offered from god and distribute it among of family members.
- After all these things take a Goddess Durga from Chowki and keep it in a place of your home temple or if your ritual is to immersion then do that.
Common Rituals and Traditions of Navratri
Both Sharad and Chaitra Navratris are celebrated similarly by Hindus across India and overseas. Here are some of the most significant rituals:
- Fasting for nine days and eating vegetarian sattvic foods
- Making flower or paper mache goddesses and decorating homes
- Performing Chandi Path and reading the Durga Saptashati
- Daily prayer services and aarti offered to the goddess
- Singing bhajans and performing garba or dandiya raas dances
- Wearing new traditional clothes and cleaning homes before rituals
- Cooking seasonal dishes like singhare ki puri and sabudana khichdi
- Observing fasts on Ashtami and Navami until moonrise
- Consuming non-grain foods made of root vegetables on Navami
The rituals unite communities in their devotion to Durga Maa and celebration of the victory of good. People across India and overseas come together to venerate the divine feminine during Navratri.
Why Navratri is celebrated twice in a year
In the year above we discuss in the very first point that we have seven Navratri but all over India mostly in northern and western India celebrates only Sharad and Vasant Navratri.
Although we celebrate Navratri both Sharad and Vasant Navratri perform in the same way. The same goddess is worshipped on the same days but both have different backgrounds and both are important to celebrate in their own place.
Let’s see first why we celebrate Chaitra Navratri
Why we celebrate Chaitra Navratri?
Chaitra Navratri also called Vasant Navratri comes in the spring season. This Navratri is celebrated because Goddess Durga is to be born on the first day of this Navratri to win by killing monster Mahishaasura in battle. In the battle of 15 days goddess at last win, Mahisasura had done penance and sought a boon from Brahma to remain immortal, which was given by Brahma on the condition that only a woman could destroy. But when the threesome divine saw that Mahisasura was taken for granted his divine and take over all the three Lok. Earth, heaven and hell after look that they divine of all three dev produce Goddess Durga to the devastation of Mahisasura and at the end of the day Mahisasura confused goddess by taking different forms and one day he came before to goddess in form of buffalo and that that day Goddess Durga end of his life by stabbing the trisula.
On the occasion of Chaitra Navratri with the worship of Siddhidatri and with the celebration of Lord Rama’s Birthday. Many temples and houses of Hinduism celebrated the end of the Chaitra Navratri with the path of Sundarkand or Ramayana’s Akhand Path.
On the occasion of Navmi, people offer Kadhi chawal to the god. Not only this Many people also keep Bhandara.
Important points about Chaitra Navratri
- On the very first day of Navratri Goddess Durga was born
- On the second day, Maa Durga had created the universe by asking the Lord Brahma.
- Vishnu ji had created the earth by taking the form of a fish, in which the whole world was created. Animals, birds, trees, plants, life created everything, and in this way, our earth started moving. our videos were created and we can make the earth which has been created or the earth has started, it is the most important thing of Chaitra Navratri that the world begins from the day.
Why we Celebrate Sharad Navratri?
Sharad Navratri is also known as Maha Navratri and this Navratri also celebrates pompously in Kolkata as a Durga puja festival in this pooja the maa Kali is worshipped. In this Navratri, there is organized a program of Ram Lila which is on the base Ramayana everywhere in every street, crossroad and even organized a full-fledged program with funfair. People lots of enjoying in funfair like take rides on swings, take snacks to play games and may more things arranged in funfair and watch the show of Ramayana. and moreover, that we are why we celebrate it. This Navratri also worshiped Goddess Durga but why? yes, the question comes up in every mind because the Lord rama won the battle from Ravana and took the Mata Sita back to Ayodhya. Then what is the role of Goddess Durga why we worshipped Nine days to Mata Durga?
The reason is that when Ravana took Goddess Sita at his place and Lord Sri Rama doesn’t find a way how he would get a return from Ravana then all God and Goddess came to Sri Rama and asked them to pray a Goddess Durga and Lord Sri Rama do that. After listening prayer of Sri Rama, she was happy for him and give the boon of victory in battle. We all know why Vijayadashami or Dusshera celebrated
The Vijayadashami is the 10th day of Sharad Navratri and Evil triumphed over good on this day. Lord Sri Rama won the battle from Ravana and took Goddess Sita back home.
History and Origins of Chaitra and Sharad Navratri Celebrations
The tradition of celebrating Navratri twice a year has origins in ancient texts like the Durga Saptashati as well as in scriptures documenting rituals. Sharad Navratri emerged earlier and was the more popular festival, celebrated at the arrival of winter. The Chaitra Navratri tradition started later.
As per Hindu scriptures, Lord Rama worshipped Goddess Durga before going to war with Ravana. After nine days of prayers, he was blessed with victory on the tenth day, now known as Vijaya Dashami or Dussehra. This story of Rama’s Navratri worship before defeating evil led to the prevalence of the autumn Navratri celebration.
Later texts added the mythology of Goddess Durga’s manifestation from the combined powers of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva to kill the demon Mahishasura after a nine-day battle. This event is said to have taken place in the month of Chaitra, giving rise to Vasant Navratri festivities.
Overall, the significance of Navratri remains the same – celebrating the triumph of good over evil and seeking Divine Mother Durga’s grace and protection as the seasons change. By celebrating this twice every year, Hindus revere the goddess for safeguarding them throughout the cycle of life.
Scientific Significance of the Navratri Festival
Beyond religious and cultural reasons, Navratri’s celebrations timed with the equinoxes have scientific significance. In earlier eras, the equinox periods were associated with climatic changes and outbreaks of diseases. Navratri rituals focused on purification and invoking health and protection.
The equinox falls when the sun is at the midpoint between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn. This triggers climatic changes, increased humidity, and the growth of viruses. The fasting, cleansing, and use of certain herbs during Navratri reportedly built immunity. Wearing new clothes was aimed at the prevention of seasonal allergies or illnesses.
Overall, the observances during Navratri serve the greater purpose of maintaining health and overcoming diseases that may emerge with seasonal changes. The timing with changing equinoxes shows the holistic scientific basis of the festival.
Navratri’s significance is multifaceted. It heralds the beauty of autumn and spring, reveres the Divine Mother, brings people together, reminds us of life’s purpose beyond materialism, and boosts health and positive energy. By celebrating this festival twice every year, Hindus recognize that just as seasons come and go, so do phases of life. Navratri inspires us to see divinity in the cycles of nature and have faith in overcoming darkness. The twice-annual celebrations offer opportunities to renew our connection with Goddess Durga and find her boundless blessings.
Basically, after a whole read, we got the result that the Navratri celebration comes at the beginning of the year is the symbol of change, and brings positivity and prosperity. which signs of good health and good wealth.