Maa Shailputri worshipped on Navratri’s first day

Maa Shailputri

Maa Shailputri

The first form of mother Durga among the nine is Shailputri. She has a half moon in her forehead; she is mounted on the bullock and holds a lance in her hand.

She is known as Shailputri, because she has incarnated from Himalaya, the Emperor of mountains. Mounting a bullock the mother has a lance in her right hand and the lotus flower in the left. She is the first one among the nine aspects of Durga. In her previous life she took birth from Dakhsha, the Prajapati as his daughter. Then she was known as Sati.

Maa Shailputri
Maa Shailputri

Once, her father Dakhsha organized a very big sacrificial ceremony in which he invited all gods to receive their sacrificial share. Lord Shiva was the only exception who was her husband.

When Sati came to know about the festivity arranged by her father, a strong desire arose in her heart to participate in the ceremony. She expressed her desire to Lord Shiva and solicited his permission. Considering all pros and cons Lord Shiva said – ‘Prajapati is displeased with me for the reasons known to him only. He invited in his function all gods and offered their sacrificial share to them. He did not invite me purposely; not even informed me. Under such circumstances it will not be proper for you to go there.’

Sati was not convinced with the piece of advice given by the Lord. The eagerness to see the ceremony and the prospect of seeing the mother and sisters did not subside. The Lord saw that Sati was very keen to go there so he gave her green signal.

A sense of strange joy started waving in her heart. She made necessary preparation and started. But all her enthusiasm subsided like the bubbles the moment she reached there. She found no affection in any eyes except her mother. Only she embraced her. She was greatly pained with the insulting attitude of her own relatives.

The entire atmosphere was surcharged with a sense of disrespect for Lord Shiva. Dakhsha also passed certain humiliating remarks intended for Lord Shiva. She watched all this and lost her balance. A mental storm made her full of remorse and anger. She repented on having overruled objection by her Lord.

She could not bear the insult of her spouse. Instantly she got her body burnt in the yogic fire, as the body was a gift of Dakhsha. The news of her demise reached Lord Shiva and he decided to give a good lesson to Dakhsha. The entire sacrificial canopy along with all paraphernalia was completely destroyed by his lieutenants.

In her next birth she incarnated her as Parvati the daughter of Himalaya and among Nava Durgas she has been referred to as Shailputri who was again known as Haimavati. According to one of the Upanisadic tales she in her Haimavati aspect defeated all prominent gods.

Like her previous birth in this life also Shailputri got married with Lord Shiva. The first and the most prominent among Nava Durgas, Shailputri is of immense importance and her glories are endless. On the first day of Navratra worship it is she who is worshipped. In this puja of the first day Yogi’s keep their mind concentrated on Muladhara. This is the starting point of their spiritual discipline.

Nine days of navratri

Maa Durga

Navratri festival

Navratri is a prominent festival of India. This is a ten days longer festival, tenth day is the culmination and is also called as Vijayadashmi. Mythologically, this day is the day when Lord Rama defeated and killed Ravana to free Sita from his clutches. In nine days of Navratri, various forms of Maa Durga are worshipped.

Nine forms of Durga - Navratri
Nine forms of Durga – Navratri
Navratri is a nine day celebration, in which goddess durga is worshipped in nine different forms. Every day she assumes a new character, a new look and a new duty.

First Day – Shailputri

On first day Goddess is worshipped as, Shailputri . She is considered the daughter of the Himalayas. She is a form of Shakti, the consort of Lord Shiva.

Second Day – Brahmacharini

On second day she is worshipped as Brahmacharini. Her name is derivative of the word ‘Brahma’, which means ‘Tapa’ or penance. In her right hand she holds a rosary, while Kamandal in her left hand. She is also a form of Uma or Parvati, a form of Mata Shakti.

Third Day – Chandraghanta

On the third day the Goddess is worshipped as, Chandraghanta. She is the symbolic representation of beauty and bravery. She has a half-circular moon in her forehead, hence the name ‘Chandraghanta’. With three eyes, she is golden in color. Ten types of weapons, including sword and arrows are held by her ten hands. Seated on a lion, she is always ready to go to war.

Maa Durga
Maa Durga

Fourth Day – Kushmanda

On fourth day Goddess is worshipped as, Kushmanda. It is believed that Kushmanda is the creator of the entire universe and she has created the entire universe by her laugh. She has eight hands in seven hands she hold weapons and in the eight one she bears a string of beads. With rosary in her right hand, she sits on Lion.

Fifth Day – Skand Mata

On the fifth day, Goddess is worshipped as, Skand Mata. She is actually called so because she is here represented as the mother of Skanda, the chief warrior of the Gods army. Skanda Mata – is white in color, has three eyes and four hand. She is seated on a lion, with her son (Skanda), on her lap.

Sixth Day – Katyanani

On the sixth day, the goddess is worshipped as, Katyayani. Seated on her vehicle lion, Katyayani has three eyes and four hands.

Seventh Day – Kalratri

On the seventh day, the Goddess is worshipped as, Kalratri. As the name suggests, Kalrati is as black as a dark night. She has four hands, she is meant to make the devotees fearless thus also known as shubhamkari. She has four hands, with a sharp sword in her left hand and a burning torch in her lower left hand, her lower and upper right hand that shows blessings.

Eighth Day – Maha Gauri

On the eight day, the Mata Rani is worshipped as, Maha Gauri. She is considered to extremely beautiful, white like snow and accessorized with white colored ornaments. She represents calmness and exhibits wisdom. With three eyes and four hands, she rides on a bull. Her left hand shows the fearless Mudra, while her lower left hand holds a Trishul. Calm and peaceful Maha Gauri observed penance

Ninth Day – Siddhidatri

On the ninth day,Goddess Durga is worshipped as, Siddhidatri. It is believed she consists of all the eight siddhis. She rides on lotus and is worshipped by all the Rishis-Munis, Siddhas, Sadhakas and Yogis. It is believed that worshipping her is best for attaining religious asset.