Navratra is a festival dedicated to the worship of the Hindu goddess Durga. The Navratri word means nine nights, Nava means nine and ratri means nights. This festival is observed twice a year, once in the starting of summer and again at the starting of winter. Vasant Navratri is observed in the Hindu month Chaitra (March – April). Navratri is celebrated five times a year.

The Nine Nights festival Navratra:

They are Vasanta Navratri, Ashadha Navratri, the Sharad Navratri, and the Magha Navratri. Navratri is a very important and major festival in the states like Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Karnataka. In Navratri the traditional dance of Gujarat

Navratri Mata

Maa Amba

called “Garba” is also performed.  During these nine nights and ten days, nine types of Devi are worshiped. The tenth day is known as “vijayadashmi.” This festival is celebrated with great passion in Bihar, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh and the Punjab. It is believed that Goddess Durga was initially worshiped in the Chaitra month and was also known as Basanti Pooja. It was Lord Ram who changed the period of Durga Pooja.

One of the important events in Haryana and Punjab is the worshiping of little girls. These little girls represent Goddess Durga and are known as ‘kanyas’.  It is performed on the eight day or the Ashtami day. The devotees take nine little girls to their home and firstly wash their leg. They prepares and server them food and sweet dishes. Lastly women give them presents like clothes or various make up products.

Vasant Navratri 2014 Date :

Vasant Navratri will be celebrated on 31 March 2014.

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The festival of Navrati is celebrated every year in the lunar month of Ashwin or Kartik. These months falls in September or October according to the English calendar. Hindus across the world observe ten days of fast, feast, celebrations, worships and various rituals in the honor of supreme mother goddess Durga. The celebrations begin with the fast of Navratri and ends on tenth day of Vijayadashmi or Dussehra.

Navratri In Different Forms:

The festival of Navratri is devoted solely to the mother goddess who is known by different names in different parts of the country. She is known as Durga, Amba, Bhavani, Chandika, Parvati, Gauri and Mahishasuramardini. There are many other manifestations of the mother goddess that are worshipped by the people.

The name Durga symbolizes inaccessible powers and she is considered to be the personification of shakti or the energy of Lord Shiva who is the destroyer and the judge. Goddess Durga represents the most furious powers of all the male gods. She is the destroyer of evil who brings an end to the evil to provide protection to the righteous. Durga is the Maa of all people and she rides a lion. She carries all kinds of weapons in her arms to kill the evil and protect the innocent.

The festival of Navratri is celebrated in different forms in different parts of the country. For example, this is celebrated as Durga Puja in the eastern part of the country. Goddess Durga is worshipped along with Ganesha, Lakshmi, Saraswati, and Kartikeya through community worships. On the tenth day, the statues are taken out from the mandaps and taken to nearby river or sea for immersion.

The people in western India, specially Gujarat celebrate Navraties by dancing and enjoying at the beats of garba. People dance with the help of small decorated dandiya sticks.

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