Goddess Shailputri is worshipped on the First day of Navratri. In 2018, goddess Shailputri will be worshipped on 18th March. Navratri begins with the commencement of chaitra Shukla Paksha by establishing a Kalash. A Kalash is considered to be a form of lord Ganesha and thus, all auspicious works begin with its establishment. The place where the Kalash has to be established is purified by with Ganga water and cow dung. The rituals mentioned in the ancient scriptures to establish a kalash should be followed strictly.
Goddess Durga depicts love and compassion. Thus, all the gods, sacred rivers, planets, seas, directions, lord of the villages are called upon and prayed to settle inside the Kalash. Goddess Shailputri, the first manifestation of goddess Durga is worshipped on the first day of Navratri. Kalash is also filled with 7 kinds of soil (Saptmritika), clay, nut and five kinds of coins.
Below this Kalash, 7 kinds of grains and barley seeds are sown, that are harvested on the tenth day. These crops are then offered to all gods and goddess. This ritual is called Jayanti and is performed along with the chant, “Jayanti Mangla Kali Bhadrakali Kapalini, Durga Shama Shiva Dhatri Swaha, Swadha Namostute”. After this ritual the Jayanti is sprinkled over the members of the family to get the blessing of the goddess.
Vande Vanchitlabhaya Chandradhakritshekhram |
Vrisharudh Shooldharan Yashaswineem ||
Goddess Durga’s idol is established at the center of the worship place with Maha Lakshmi, Ganesha and Vijaya’s idol on the right and Kartikeya, Devi Maha Saraswati and Yogini’s idol on the left. Lord Shiva is also worshipped along with all the gods and goddesses. Shailputri is worshipped on the first day with flowers, rice, roli and sandalwood. Everyday in the evening aarti is performed to worship goddess Durga. The worshippers sing “Jag Janni Jai Jai” and “Jai Ambe Gauri”, the devotional songs dedicated to Goddess Durga.