Durga Puja holds a special place in Hindu Mythology. On this day, the whole Country celebrates this festival with Pomp and Pleasure. The big question is, What is the significance of this Festival in everyones life and Why do we celebrate Durga Puja? Let’s try and understand the importance of this festival and the reason behind it.
Durga Maa (The Divine Mother)
Durga Pooja as the name suggests is day we worship Goddess Durga. The name Durga means the one who is Inaccessible, Invincible and who can redeem a situation which is unsolvable. Durga is also known as Shakti or Devi and is one of the most worshipped Goddess in India. She is the Divine Mother and she represents Strength, Morality, Justice, Power and Protection. She is so powerful that people worship her to protect themselves from Anger, Selfishness, Hatred and Jealously.
Why do we Celebrate Durga Puja?
To know Why do we celebrate Durga Puja? we have to go back in time. According to Markandeya Purana, Durga was a Warrior Goddess. It all began when a demon Rambha fell in love with a Water Buffalo. After the union between Rambha and the water buffalo a demon Mahishasur was born (Mahish means Buffalo).
Mahishasur prayed and meditated so intensely that Lord Brahma got pleased with him and gave him a boon that “No God or No Man” would be able to defeat him.
After getting this boon, Mahishasur unleashed his immense power and started terrorizing the people of earth.
The Gods were so troubled from his power that they pleaded Lord Vishnu to save them from Mahishasur, Lord Shiva was present there as well. Lord Brahma explained everything to Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva.
Hearing this all the Gods got so angry that a bright light emerged out of their bodies and the light landed on the Ashram of a priest named Katyan. From that light came out Goddess Durga and introduced herself as Supreme Brahmam, who created all Gods and was here to save all the Gods.
When Mahishasur first saw Goddess Durga, he said arrogantly that a women cannot defeat me being unaware of her powers.
Listeining to his arrogance Goddess Durga roared with laughter and with her laughter the whole planet started shaking. This incident struck fear in Mahishasur’s heart but he attacked Durga Maa regardless.
Attacks of Mahishasur
On his first attack, he took on a form of a Buffalo Demon but Durga Maa defeated with a single strike with her sword. On the second attack, he took on a form of an elephant and attacked Goddess Durga’s lion with his trunk but was easily defeated by her sword.
Durga Maa cut him down easily after his third and fourth attck as a Lion and a Man. In his last attempt to defeat Goddess Durga, he took the form of Buffalo Demon again. Watching this Goddess Durga became very angry and roared and said “Roar while you can, you illiterate demon. When I kill you after drinking this, all the Gods will be roaring from delight”
Mahishasur was paralyzed by the bright light emitting from the Goddess because she drank the Divine Wine.
The Goddess then resounded with laughter and slayed Mahishasur for the last time permanently. Mahishasurmardhini is the other name of Durga Maa. There is a lot of evil in the world like Jealousy, Hatred and Selfishness. There are several Powerful Maa Durga Mantras which you can chant for protection from evil.
According to some other story, Goddess Durga gathered an army to fight the Demon King Mahishasur and his demon army. The battle was so fierce and long that it lasted for 10 days. On the 10th day, Durga Maa finally defeated Mahishasur and his demon army and that’s why it is known as Vijaya Dashami (VIctory on the 10th Day). This is the answer to Why do we celebrate Durga Puja?