Navaratri is the celebration of the three gunas — tamas, rajas and sattva, that are symbolised by Durga and her many forms, but essentially by Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati. The Devi is ‘trigunatmika’ — the owner and master of the three gunas. Gunas are our innate qualities that can be refined through the divine consciousness. There is no physical entity without these three dimensions.
‘Tamas’ is ignorance or inertia. When tamas is not in balance in our personality, delusion, misunderstanding and dullness can be experienced.
‘Rajas’ is activity, greed or desire in a person. When rajas trait dominates our personality, we feel restless, we are extremely greedy for money, we have too many desires. As a result, we either feel very excited or extremely low.
‘Sattva’ is the peaceful trait in a person. Sattva is transcendence. Sattva is dominating in our environment or in our body, when we feel happy, pleasant and awake, our perceptions are very clear.
The gunas are responsible for our behaviour. Every being is caught in the play of gunas. In life, all the three qualities are essential but the point is that we must be able to strike a balance between these qualities for a peaceful and successful life. We must be able to achieve ‘sattva’ or peace while keeping ‘tamas’ and rajas gunas in control.
Dasara is also the celebration of the power of positive over the negative forces and qualities. A woman may be a young girl, housewife, an entrepreneur or even a leader to many people, she can believe and practice the thought of “I’m Durga” which can empower her to face her smallest to biggest problems with wisdom and ease.
It’s important to tell ourselves that I’m not powerless, submissive woman, but I’m ‘Durga’ , which means I have all the necessary ‘weapons’ and now I can fight. I’m strong, intelligent, wise, worthy, passionate, decisive, can solve my problems objectively, at the same time fight my battles fearlessly, fight my emotional battles with immense grace while retaining the feminine qualities of motherly love, forgiveness, compassion, patience and dignity.