Durga is the original manifested form of Mother Parvati or Adi-Parashakti. The meaning of Durga is  “the inaccessible” or “the invincible”, is the most popular incarnation of Devi and one of the main forms of the Goddess Shakti in the Hindu pantheon. Parvati took the form of Durga to kill the demon Durgamasur.

Goddess Durga and festivals

In Nepal, Goddess Durga is worshiped during Dashain festival. Durga is worshipped in ten forms with one form for each day in Nepal and celebrated across the country with Vijayadashami being a national holiday. The festival includes animal sacrifice in some communities.

Traditionally, the festival is celebrated over 15 days, the first nine-day are spent by the faithful by remembering Durga and her ideas, the tenth day marks Durga’s victory over Mahishasura, and the last five days celebrate the victory of good over evil.

Vijayadashami is celebrated as victory of Lord Rama over Demon Ravana and also triumph of Goddess Durga over the buffalo Demon Mahishasura. A 10 day fast, rituals and celebrations are observed in the months of Ashwin and Kartik celebrating the victory of good over evil. Vijayadashami is also known as Dussehra or Dasara. In Nepal Dasara is celebrated as Dashain.

During the first nine days, nine aspects of Durga known as Navadurga are meditated upon, one by one during the nine-day festival by devout Shakti worshippers.

She received features from each and every god. Her face from Shiva, her ten arms from lord Vishnu, her feet from Lord Brahma and so on.

Durga Puja is the biggest festival which is celebrated by the follower of Hinduism in her name. Durga-Puja is celebrated in many countries. In Bangladesh, the four-day-long Sharadiya Durga Puja is the most important religious festival for the Hindus.

In Sri Lanka, Durga in the form of Vaishnavi, bearing Vishnu’s iconographic symbolism is celebrated. This tradition has been continued by Sri Lankan diaspora. In Japanese Buddhism, she appears as Butsu-mo.

Mahishasura

In Hindu mythology, Mahishasura is Buffalo Demon. Mahishasura is known for deception and who pursued his evil ways by shape shifting into different forms. Mahishasura had gained the gift that no man could kill him.

In the battles between the gods and the demons, the Devas led by Indra were defeated by Mahishasura. Dejected by their defeat, the Devas assemble in the mountains where their combined divine energies coalesce into goddess Durga. The newborn Durga led a battle against Mahishasura, riding a lion, and killed him, thereafter she is remembered in this form as Mahishasuramardini.She has nine other manifestations commonly known as :

  • Shailaputri,
  • Brahmacharini
  • Chandraghanta
  • Kushmanda
  • Skandamata
  • Katyayini
  • Kaalratri
  • Mahagauri
  • Siddhidhatri

Iconography

She has 8 arms. In Hinduism, these 8 arms represent the 8 quadrants or directions and it is believed that she protects her devotees from all directions. The 8 arms correspondingly directs in the direction of north, south, east, west, and the four diagonals of northwest, northeast, southwest, and southeast.

Adi-Parashakti

Durga is Adi-Parashakti herself.  The Devi Gita, declares her to be the greatest Goddess. Thus, she is considered the supreme goddess and primary deity in Shaktism, occupying a place similar to Lord Krishna in Vaishnavism. According to Skanda Purana, the goddess Parvati accounted the name “Durga” after she killed the demon Mahishasura. She is considered as the mother of the universe.

As she is another half of Shiva. She’s presented as “Shakti”, or the female principle of divine energy, but she assumes the power of male gods to save the universe. She’s depicted as riding a lion, which symbolizes unlimited power. Durga riding a lion indicates that she possesses unlimited power and uses it to protect virtue and destroy evil.

Triyambake

Durga is known as triyambake because she has  3 eyes which represent Agni, Surya, and Chandra. Goddess Durga is the symbol of supreme woman power or Nari shakthi. She represents everything the ideal women should be. Bold, courageous and fights against evil. In all her different forms, Durga vanquished demons plaguing the universe.

Weapons of Durga

The weapons in the hands of Durga such as a mace, sword, disc, and arrow, convey the idea that one weapon cannot destroy all different kinds of enemies. Different weapons must be used to fight enemies depending upon the circumstances.

The basic notion of Durga is to lead us from darkness unto light. The darkness can be ignorance, violence or any other ill fate. Of course Durga can’t be physically present for all of us. But she has a strong mental presence; she empowers one to fight against evil with courage and confidence. Much like a modern day superhero.

Different Durga Mantra and their Use

Mantra is a sound, word, or phrase that is repeated by someone who is praying or meditating. The Sanskrit word mantra consists of the root, ‘man’- “to think” and the suffix -tra, designating tools or instruments, hence a literal translation would be “instrument of thought”.

The earliest mantras were composed in Vedic Sanskrit by Hindus in India, and are at least 3000 years old.Mantras now exist in various schools of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism.

सर्वमङ्गलमङ्गल्ये शिवे सर्वार्थसाधिके।

शरण्ये त्र्यम्बके गौरि नारायणि नमोऽस्तु ते ॥

Sarv Mangala Mangalye Shive Sarvarth Sadhike Sharanye Trayambke Gouri NarayaniNamostute

Mantras of sri Druga Saptashati is the Mantra for welfare.

Siddhis Mantra

Om Hreeng Dung Durgaayai Namah

ॐ ह्रींग डुंग दुर्गायै नम

This Mantra helps one in attaining all types of Siddhis.

Self Relization Mantra

Om Aing Hreeng Kleeng Chamundaayai Viche

ॐ अंग ह्रींग क्लींग चामुण्डायै विच्चे

This is very popular Mantra of Goddess. Performing this Mantra is essential in ceremonies of Goddess. By reciting this Mantra one gets intelligence, beauty and prosperity. It helps in the realization of self. Om regulates our Chakras to best possible alignment for good energy flow in our Prana or Life forces

Gauri Mantra

He Gauri Shankarardhangi! Yatha Tvam Shankarpriya Tatha maam Kuru Kalyani! Kantkaantam Sudurlabhaam

हे गौरी शंकरधंगी ! यथा तवं शंकरप्रिया, तथा मां कुरु कल्याणी ! कान्तकान्तम् सुदुर्लभं

Gauri mantra is for getting suitable husband.

Mantra for wealth

Durge Smrita Harasi Bhitimshesh jantoh Swasthaih Smritamati Mateev Shubhaam Dadasi Daridray Duhkh Bhayaharini ka Twadanya Sarvopakarkaranay Sadadrachitta

“दुर्गे स्मृता हरसि भीतिमशेषजन्तो: स्वस्थै: स्मृता मतिमतीव शुभां ददासि। दारिद्र्यदु:खभयहारिणि का त्वदन्या सर्वोपकारकरणाय सदाऽऽ‌र्द्रचित्ता॥”

This mantra is for getting reach and prosperity.

Mantra for Attraction

Om Kleeng Gyaninampee Chetansi Devi Bhagwati Hi Saa, Baladakrishya Mohay Mahamaya Prayachhati

ॐ क्लींग ज्ञानिनामपि चेतांसि देवी भगवती ही सा, बलादाकृष्य मोहय महामाया प्रयच्छति

Mantra of Attraction help you to attract what you want into your life. Om regulates our Chakras to best possible alignment for good energy flow in our Prana or Life forces.

Mantra for getting salvation

Vidhehi Devi Kalyanam, Vidhehi Parmam Shriyam Rupam Dehi Jayam Dehi, Yasho Dehi DwishoJahi

विधेहि देवि कल्याणं विधेहि परमां श्रियम्। रुपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि॥

 

Mantra for the destruction of sins

Hinasti Daityatejansi Swanenapurya Ya Jagat Sa Ghanta Patu No devi ! Papebhyo NahSutaniv

हिनस्ति दैत्यतेजांसि स्वनेनापूर्य या जगत्। सा घण्टा पातु नो देवि पापेभ्योऽन: सुतानिव॥

Mantra for getting suitable wife

Patni Manormam Dehi, Manovrittanusarinim Tarineem DurgsansarsaagarasyaKulodbhavaam

पत्‍‌नीं मनोरमां देहि मनोवृत्तानुसारिणीम्। तारिणीं दुर्गसंसारसागरस्य कुलोद्भवाम्॥

Mantra for the destruction of a pandemic

Jayanti Mangala Kali, Bhadrakali Kapalini Durga Kshama Shiva Dhatri Swaha Swadha Namoastute Te

जयन्ती मङ्गला काली भद्रकाली कपालिनी। दुर्गा क्षमा शिवा धात्री स्वाहा स्वधा नमोऽस्तु ते॥

Mantra for overcoming fear

Sarvaswarupe Sarveshe Sarvashakti Samanvite BhayeBhyastrahi No Devi! Durge DeviNamostute

सर्वस्वरूपे सर्वेशे सर्वशक्ति समन्विते। भयेभ्याहि नो देवि दुर्गे देवि नमोऽस्तु ते॥

Mantra for good health and fortune

Dehi Saubhagyamaarogyam Dehi Me Paramam Sukham Rupam Dehi Jayam Dehi, Yasho Dehi DwikhoJahi

देहि सौभाग्यमारोग्यं देहि मे परमं सुखम्। रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि॥

 

Mantra for protection

ShulenPahi No devi! Pahi Khadagen Chambike GhantaSwanen Nah ahi, ChapajyanihswanenCha

शूलेन पाहि नो देवि पाहि खड्गेन चाम्बिके। घण्टास्वनेन न: पाहि चापज्यानि:स्वनेन च॥

Mantra for getting Shakti

Srishtisthiti Vinashaanam Shaktibhute Sanatani Gunaashraye Gunamaye Narayani Namostute

सृष्टिस्थितिविनाशानां शक्ति भूते सनातनि। गुणाश्रये गुणमये नारायणि नमोऽस्तु ते॥

Mantra for conquering troubles

Sharanagat Deenart Paritranaparayane Sarvsyartihare Devi, NarayaniNamostute

शरणागतदीनार्तपरित्राणपरायणे।

सर्वस्यार्तिहरे देवि नारायणि नमोऽस्तु ते॥

 

 

 

 

 

About sadiksha

Namaste! I am a Nepali Art Dealer specialized in Mandala and Thangka paintings. I love to write articles about the monastic culture of the Himalayas. If you like this post or have any question please leave me a comment or use the contact page to reach me.

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