The Nine-day Spring festival – Vasanatha Navaratri
The Nine-day Spring festival – Vasanatha Navaratri
Vasanatha Navaratri is the celebration of ‘Adiparashakti’ (Supreme Power) in one of her immanent forms manifests through the Nature, as flowers blossom and trees turn green in spring. Vasantha means “spring” Nava means “Nine” and ratris means “Nights”. Vasanatha Navaratri or the nine nights of spring, fall in the Vedic calendar in the month of Chaitra (spring) and this year the Navaratri is from 6th April to 14th April. During Vasantha Navarathri, Nature which is the Representation of God is in the most Generous Form like a mother is to the child. Hence the Mother Divine is prayed to and Her blessings are sought after. Vasanta Navaratri – The main purpose of celebrating this Navaratri is to welcome seasonal changes as the other festivals of the year start with Vasanta Navaratri. The tradition of worshipping the power of Shakti is followed as it was started by our ancestors.
All though Vasanatha Navaratri is dedicated to nine forms of Shakti but Rama and Hanumana are also worshipped during this period, as God Rama was born on the last of day Navaratri, which is also called Ram Navami. The other legend that is associated with this festival is the story of prince Sudarsana, who won the battle against King Yudhajit after with the help of Shakti. After the victory prince Sudarsana worshipped Devi along with his wife and Father-in-law, as Devi was pleased, she ordered them to perform her havan and other means during the Vasanta Navratri. Since then this Navaratri is celebrated as Vasanatha Navaratri. Sri Rama and Lakshmana being the descendants of King Sudarsana also performed havan during Vasanatha Navaratri and as a result Devi helped them in the recovery of Sita.
Vasanatha Navaratri Rituals
Pooja is started after taking bath in the morning and wearing new clothes. Before the pooja kalash is filled with water and mango leaves are placed at the mouth of the kalash. Tie the moli on the pitcher of the Kalash. The idol or picture of Maa Durga should be kept in pooja room and worship her with roli, chawal, flowers, kumkum and balepatra. After that add burning coal to the clay pot and pour ghee over it. To make the coal burning one can use Kapoor over it. Ghee needs to be added to coal at regular intervals so that the light can be on during the pooja. After the completion of pooja encircle the flame three times and join the hands. Durga Saptashati or Devi Kavach can be enchanted during the pooja. On the last day, Lord Rama is being worshipped by keeping the mandap in the north side of the house and making the Vedi in the middle. Shri Ram and Sita’s idol is being kept on the vedi and the mantra is being recited followed by diya, rice, incense sticks, flowers and scent. After this kapur and diya with either one wick or five wicks are being lit in ghee and aarti is being conducted.
Navratri Pooja helps to invoke the energy aspect of God in the form of universal mother, who is considered to be the removal of miseries of life. Worship of Shakti reconfirms the scientific theory that energy is imperishable. Lord Rama is being worshipped in the country as an inspiration of an ideal man. The one who is true and good in every aspect of being a perfect man, a mighty king, an ideal son, a wonderful husband, an ideal brother and a great father. He is simply not sought as a hero but a perfect man.
The first day of the celebration, we propitiate the Goddess Bharathi.
Day 1: Bharathi – The Goddess of Music and Poetry
The word Bharathi in Sanskrit has 42 meanings; the most prominent of them is “to relieve.” Music, in whatever genre and form, is one of the best forms of stress relief. Bharathi is the Goddess who should be invoked by all those who are in the field of music, song, and poetry.
Day 2: Saraswathi – the Goddess of Creative Intelligence
Creativity is the seed for creation. Creativity triggers are ever-active for those whose minds, intellect, and alertness is in perfect harmony with each other. Saraswati represents creativity that unites vital cosmic energy and human life-force. The Sanskrit word rasa means “flavour.” Those who are in the field of arts should exclusively focus on the form of Saraswathi.
Day 3: Sharadha – The Goddess of Deeper Knowledge
Invoking this form of the Goddess helps us in finding methods to gain deeper insights in whatever fields that we are working in. Those who are in the field of research and development should definitely invoke her.
Day 4: Hamsavahini – The Goddess of Thoughts and Mental Awareness
Hamsavahini literally means “one who rides a swan.” Invoking this form of the Goddess will help you discriminate between right and wrong thoughts. By constantly watching your thoughts, you rise to that awareness level where your mental antennas are always tuned to attract positive, powerful, and beneficial thoughts from the universe.
Day 5: Jagatikhyata –The Goddess of Fame and Popularity
Jagat means “world,” and kyata means “fame.” Jagatikhyata endows one with great fame and popularity. She basically is the rewarding Goddess who rewards one for their good deeds for the collective benefit. She creates opportunities for you to open up to the world and perform many meritorious deeds within your capacity from time to time.
Day 6: Vageeshwari – The Goddess of Speech
Vaak means “word,” and Eshwari means “one who rules over.” Vageeshwari, the goddess of Speech, when meditated upon relieves us from defective speech and helps us in using the right words at the right time. Aspiring orators, those in the profession of teaching, and every professional who needs the “gift of gab” to run their business should invoke Vageeshwari.
Day 7: Kaumari – The Goddess of Beauty and Charm
Kaumari means “a young maiden.” This form of the Goddess gives you beautiful thoughts that lead to charming words and stunningly great actions.
Day 8: Brahmacharini – The Goddess Who Holds the Logic of the Universe Creation
Brahmacharini literally means “one who practices celibacy,” but the context here is that of one who holds the logic behind the creation of the universe. Brahma is the creator of all the worlds, while the intelligence that worked behind the act of creation is that of the Goddess. Hence, she is referred to as Brahmacharini, meaning “one who remains with Brahma” in the form of intelligence.
Day 9: Buddhidatri – The Goddess Who Instills Intelligence
Intelligence is the manifestation of multiple factors. It is a combination of the right thoughts, retention of knowledge acquired through various sources, memory recall, and other brain competencies. The Goddess instils and inspires all those faculties, and hence she is referred to as Buddhidatri. Budhi means “intelligence,” and dhatri means “giver.”
Day 9: Kshudraghanta – The Obstacle Remover
The Sanskrit word Kshudra means “terrible or vicious.” Ghanta literally means “bell.” The Goddess is the obstacle remover. She works inside you in a very fascinating way. The more you connect to her, the more her power grows inside you. She strengthens your intuitive power and gives greater awareness about the impediments possible so that you are capable of prevention. She helps you more when you help others.
Meditate on Goddess Kshudraghanta by focussing at the meeting point of your eyebrows, i.e. Ajna Chakra for intuition. You can alternatively focus on your navel area (Manipura Chakra) to dispel fear.
Day 10: Bhuvaneshwari – The Goddess of Universal Consciousness
Bhuvana means “the world,” and Eshwari means “the ruler.” All knowledge should finally lead to the knowledge of the self, and thereby the knowledge of the universe. Bhuvaneshwari bestows this knowing on those who seek this knowledge. She is the complete incarnation of the Mother Goddess, the ultimate Shakti, who manifests as the force of action in the nucleus of every cell of your being.