Showing posts with label Navaratri. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Navaratri. Show all posts

Hinduism - Who Is Yogmaya In The Hindu Pantheon?

 

Yogmaya is a powerful Goddess form known for her capacity to bewitch and perplex people—in other words, her ability to wield maya, the power of illusion.

Yogmaya is mentioned as the divinity who assumes the shape of a newborn girl and is subsequently slain by Krishna's cruel uncle, Kamsa, according to certain modern texts.

All the inmates of Kamsa's palace fall slumber under her enchantment the previous night, according to these texts, and Krishna's father, Vasudeva, is able to take the child away.

Yogmaya is said to have facilitated Krishna's clandestine rendezvous with the ladies of Braj later in his career—when Krishna plays his flute, the women come to him, but all the others fall under Yogmaya's influence and are oblivious of their absence.

Yogmaya is a strong goddess because of her capacity to manipulate maya; she is honored on the fourth day of Navaratri, the festival of the "nine nights" that are holy to the Goddess in her many incarnations.


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Hinduism - What Is Navaratri?

 

("nine evenings") The Goddess is honored twice a year with a festival devoted to her.

The spring Navaratri takes place in the bright, waxing half of the lunar month Chaitra (March–April), while the autumn Navaratri takes place in the brilliant half of the lunar month Ashvin (September–October).

Each Navaratri festival lasts for the first nine nights of these lunar months, culminating in a festival honoring the deity Rama: Ram Navami in Chaitra and Dussehra in Ashvin.

The autumn Navaratri is significantly more important than the spring Navaratri.

In Bengal, where the Goddess is the major regional goddess, the autumn Navaratri is celebrated with zeal.

Large processions with intricately adorned clay representations of the Goddess define Bengali Navaratri.

Individuals, companies, trade unions, and neighborhood groups commission these photographs.

It is a symbol of significant prestige to have the greatest image.

During the weeks leading up to Navaratri, Bengali children are excused from school, state employees are given vacation, and Calcutta's energy supply is uninterrupted— a phenomena termed the Navaratri "miracle" since shortages and outages are prevalent the rest of the year.

The purpose of the Navaratri festivities is to win the favor of the Mother Goddess, especially in her strong manifestations like Durga.

Devotees (bhakta) execute a variety of ceremonies during the course of these nine nights.

Some others fast (upavasa) and worship at home, consecrating temporary representations of the Goddess to be used throughout the festival.

Devotees may also worship young girls as incarnations of the Goddess, or sponsor readings of the Devimahatmya, the Goddess's oldest and most significant literature.

They may also worship the Goddess as Navadurga, with each of the nine nights honoring a different manifestation of the Goddess.

Another typical custom is to harvest barley shoots, which are sometimes worn on the festival's final day.

The Goddess, among other things, symbolizes the feminine force of fertility and birth, hence this tradition alludes to the festival's aim.

The spring festival is celebrated in northern India before the crops are sown.

Wearing sprouted grain is an effort to appease the Goddess in order for the harvest to thrive.

After the harvest, when this promise of fruition has been realized, the autumn Navaratri is observed as a time of thankfulness for the benefits received.

The Goddess also symbolizes the victory of good over evil; on these occasions, the Devimahatmya is recited aloud to remind listeners of the Goddess' wonderful achievements and to assure them of her continuous protection.

~Kiran Atma


You may also want to read more about Hinduism here.

Be sure to check out my writings on religion here.