The beginning of Chaitra month’s Pratipada not only means beginning of a new year but also start of Durga Puja. This year 18th March 2018 Chaitra Navratra marks the beginning “Virodhkrit” which is a ‘Vikram Sawant’ and along with it starts Navratra from Pratipada. Chaitra Navratra is a time to celebrate and worship different forms of Devi Durga which is also known as ‘Shakti Puja’. Even Lord Ram performed this Shakti Puja before his battle and also achieved success in the same. This is the significance if the this nine-day ritual.
People who offer prayers and carry out these nine-day rituals with a pure heart, they definitely attain positive results. With the arrival of Chaitra Navratra, new year begins. This period is also taken as a base to do astrological calculations.
During Navaratra, Saptashi which comes under Shakti puja is of great significance. If you read Saptashi at this time, you may receive quick results. Listening to the recitation of Durga Saptashi is quite beneficial; also the the devotee carrying our these rituals is advised to maintain righteousness and purity in all aspects.
Chaitra Navratra puja starts with ‘Ghat Sthapana’. On the day of Shukla Paksh’s Pratipada one is supposed get ready after an early bath. After you vow for your fast, you need to prepare an earthen stool kind of thing where barley seeds are sown. The Ghat is also seated in this. Kul Devi’s idol is placed on the Ghat and then prayers are offered. You must make sure that, during the entire pujan, a lamp must be kept enlightened uninterrupted.
A Durga Saptashati devotee must bathe early in the morning, purify his sitting area, make himself seated in a calm and composed position and should start the rituals with utmost dedication. In case, the devotee remains unable to complete the recitation and reading of Saptashi, he may chant certain given mantras which will indicate the completion of all chapters.
During all these nine days Devi Durga is worshipped in nine various forms. Nine forms of Durga namey; Shailputri, Bhrahmacharini, Chandraghanta, Kushmanda, Skandmata, Katyayani, Kalratri, Mahagauri and Sidhadatri Devi; there are rituals to be performes for all these forms wherein on the eighth day (Ashtami) and ninth day (Navami) especially little girls are offered pujan and food. In this procedure, girls below 9-10 years of age are worshipped, offered bhog and also presented special gifts.
All these nine days involve recitation of different Mantras and Tantras to impress and glorify Devi Durga. Along with the puja procedure, tantras and mantras are also performed. Without Mantras, any sort of worship is said to be incomplete. According to Vedas, every individual must pray to any of the planets to attain happiness and prosperity in life. These nine days of Devi Durga urges to pacify the planets through various prayers. Recitation of Mantras in these days fulfill your desires. A day before Navratra, Devi Durga’s ‘Kalash’ is established and then puja rituals are initiated.
During these days, to make Devi Durga happy, there are many procedures that need to be carried out and in this puja, the nine forms of Durga are worshipped which require different types of rituals which in turn make you attain powerful blessings of the Goddess.