Sunday, October 13, 2013

Dussehra: Victory Of Good Over Evil

In 2013, Dussehra, the final day or 10th day of Navratri festival. While some celebrate Dussehra on 13th, others celebrate it on 14th as well. This day depicts the historic victory of Lord Rama over King Ravana and Durga Ma's Victory over Mahishasur. Read on to know more... 

Dussehra also known as Vijayadashami is the culmination of 9 days of Navratri festivities. It is the day when Lord Rama killed the King of Lanka, Ravana and also the day when Goddess Durga killed the evil king Mahishasur. This is a grand festival celebrated on the 10th day of Ashwin month all across India. Schools, colleges, government offices, banks are declared a holiday. 

There are two main legends marking this day as important. 

  1. Lord Rama kills King Ravana
  2. Goddess Durga kills Mahishasur

An End To King Ravana

King RavanaThis day marks the end of the battle between Lord Rama and King Ravana, with the killing of King Ravana. According to legends, Lord Rama performed a Durga puja or Chandi Homa before he went into war with the King. It is during this puja that Lord Rama gained the knowledge of how to kill Ravana. With this knowledge Rama, Laxman, Hanuman and their followers marched to Lanka and killed King Ravana and rescued Sita Maa who was abducted by the evil King. 

People perform many Homas and pujas on this day to purify the atmosphere of the house and rid it off bad vibes. 

Ravana’s Ten Heads

  • Kama vasana (Lust)
  • Lobha (Greed)
  • Mada (Pride)
  • Maha (Possessive)
  • Krodha (Anger)
  • Swartha (Selfish)
  • Amanavta (Cruel)
  • Anyaaya (Injustice)
  • Ahankar (Ego)
  • Matsara (Jealous)

An End To Mahishasur

Maa Durga, Goddess of power, the Goddess who took avatar to put an end to evil. Maa Durga incorporated the power of the trinity, Brahma-Vishnu-Shiva and was sent to earth to kill and stop the evil Mahishasur. Maa Durga rides on the ferocious Lion who will induce fear in anyone who possess evil. She has 10 hands which hold the weapons to kill and destroy the evil. The war between Maa Durga and Mahishasur which lasted for 10 days, came to an end on this day with the death of Mahishasur. As such this day is celebrated with much zest and fervour by one and all to mark the end of Navratri festivities. 

Dussehra Celebrations

On this day large effigies of Ravana are burnt with spectacular fireworks lighting up the sky to celebrate the victory of good over evil. Special plays and folk dances called Ramleela which tell the story of Lord Rama and Sita and his journey to rescue Sita from King Ravana are performed. Fairs and events bring a whole new life to the city, this is a very popular culture in North India. Another spectacular event that happens during this time is the Mysore dussehra parade. This is a grand event in Mysore city, Karnataka state. Also on this day Ayudha puja (tools & things) is performed by many. This involves worshiping the tools and weapons that make their livelihood. Like in modern day people worship laptop, mobiles, car and so on which are the main things that keep their work in process. 

Dussehra is celebrated as Durga Puja in West Bengal and many parts of North India. On this day people do pandal hopping. People set up beautiful pandals and keep Durga Maa’s murthi for public praying.

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