Nine nights of rejuvenation


It gives relief at the three levels of our existence - physical, subtle and causal. This is a period for self-referral and transformation; getting back to the source. During this time nature sheds the old and life rejuvenates and emerges back afresh in the spirit.
Like a baby is in the mother’s womb for nine months before it is born, similarly during these nine days and nights, the seeker through fasting, prayer, silence and meditation gets back to its true source; which is love, joy and peace. While fasting detoxifies the body, silence purifies the speech and brings rest to the chattering mind. Meditation takes one deep into one's own being.

During these nine nights of Navratri, our mind should be in the Divine consciousness. We should ask our self these questions, “How was I born? What is my source?” Then we become creative and victorious. When negative forces haunt us, we are disturbed and we grumble. Craving, aversion, uncertainty and fear are the negative forces. To get relief from all this, we need to go to the source of energy within us.

During these nine nights and ten days, nine forms of Devi Shakti i.e. female divinity are worshipped.  On the first three days of Navratri we honour Durga, the embodiment of valour and self-confidence.

The next three days are committed to Lakshmi, the embodiment of wealth and the last three days are dedicated to Saraswati, the embodiment of knowledge. There are many stories on how the Divine Mother manifested herself to restore peace and order by slaying the asuras (demons) - Madhu and Kaitabha, Mahishasura and Shumbha and Nishumbha and many other demons.  These demons are symbolic of the negative forces that can take over anyone at anytime. Madhu is craving and Kaitaba means aversion.

Raktabijasur means deeply ingrained negativities and obsessions.Mahishasur means dullness. It is symbolic of heaviness and inertia. The Divine Shakti brings energy, and inertia is lifted. Doubt of the Self is ‘Shumbh’. Nishumbh is doubt of everything. Navratri is the celebration of the spirit or prana which alone can destroy these asuras.  Recognising the one divinity in every form and every name is the celebration of Navratri.

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