Procedure and Significance of Navratri Puja in India
Navratri Puja is one of the great rituals performed by the people on the festival of Navratri. This festival exists two times in a year as first time it falls in the calendar months of March-April and second calendar months it is held in October-November. People involve in performing Navratri Puja for nine days, which is the time of Navratri festival. During this period, devotees do Durga Puja by chanting mantras, singing songs and bhajans in the praise of the deity. Through the entire nine days period of this puja, Individuals keep fast as it is considered auspicious.
Navratri is popularly known as the festival of nine nights and is spiritually dedicated to a Goddess named as Durga. The first day of the Navratri festival begins with Ghat Prothishtha or Kalash Sthapna and it ends with Kumari pooja, which is executed on the ninth day. Navratri festival is celebrated in every nook and corner of India by the people, who leave no stone unturned to celebrate it in a grand manner. Though the festival of Navratri is celebrated in all the states of India, but you can see the actual flavor and enthusiasm in Bengal, Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh states.
Significance of Navratri Puja:
Navratri Puja is also known as Durga Puja and it plays a significant role in the life of each and every individual as it gives them purity and perfection. Moreover, it destroys all the impurities, vices and defects of the devotees. Durga is the overlord of planet Rahu as per the Vedic Astrology and in this manner, her energy neutralizes the negative powers of Rahu. In addition to this, Durga Puja is the best way to cleanse all evil characteristics including hatred, jealousy, ignorance, anger, greed, violence, etc, which can exist at any time in inside and outside of a person. In the auspicious time frame of this puja, people can get the blessings of Maa Durga the Warrior Goddess, Maa Lakshmi the Goddess of Wealth and Maa Saraswati the Goddess of Wisdom, who can together wipe out the demons.
Pre-defined procedure of Navratri Puja
Devotees need to follow some pre-defined procedure for Navratri Puja. They have to arrange certain items, which are required to execute this puja. The items include the icon or image of Goddess Durga, Sapthashati book, water in a patra specially in Kalash (pitcher), fresh and fine leaves of mango, one good coconut, tilak, red sacred thread, atap chawal (rice), fresh paan (betel leaves), some supari (beetle nuts), sindoor (vermilion) and gulal. Along with this, they should have a small number of incense sticks, a deep and matchstick. In order to get the benefits of this puja, devotees should offer flowers such as rose, lotus and red hibiscus as well as fresh pomegranate and sweets like mahabhog khichdi, laddoo and peda, as Prasad.
Individuals start Navratri Puja after taking bath in the morning and by wearing laundered clothes. Then they place mango leaves on kalash of water and put a coconut inside it. After that they tie moli on the neck of the kalash and worship the idol or picture of Maa Durga with the help of roli, rice, flowers, some balepatra, sindoor and gulal. The devotees must take care of light as the light should be maintained throughout the entire puja as per the rules. For this purpose, they may add burning coal to a clay pot and pour ghee over it and thereafter, they can offer a small piece of the sweetmeat to the fire along with ghee at regular intervals. Besides, to conclude this puja, they encircle the flame for three times by folding their hands and perform the aarti by singing an aarti song.
The festival of Navratri is immensely propitious to everyone irrespective of his and her age. An individual who worships Maa Durga by heart during this festival gets the grace and blessings of Goddess Durga. Like every year, Navratri Festival will be celebrated in a grand manner this year too. Once again, the crowd of devotees would fulfill the atmosphere with the popular songs and bhajans during this festival. Thus, with divine adulation, we wish you blessed and Happy Navratri.