NAV DURGA AND NAVARATRI
Axis of the Earth is inclined at 23.5 degree from the axis of its orbit in which it revolves around the Sun. Thus astronomically, earth undergoes two major sun operations in a year. Seasons are dependent on the direction of the relative movement of the sun. Once when the sun appears to move southward of the equator (Dahshinayana). During this period, intensity of the sun is not harsh and the environment is full of moisture. The second is when the sun appears to move northward. In this period the sun rays are more intense and the environment is more of a dry kind. The first signifies the onset of winters and the second signifies the coming of summers
Thus two times, the two seasons combine. During these periods human body becomes more prone to diseases as it is less resistant, both physically and mentally to the attack of outside environment, micro organism, bacteria and viruses.
The first union of two seasons comes in March end to mid April (CHITRA SHUKLA PRATIPADA TO NAVAMI as per Hindu calendar) and second one comes in September end/anywhere in October month (ASHWIN SHUKLA PRATIPADA TO NAVAMI as per Hindu calendar). These nine days/nights are called NAVRATRI.
Remedial measures to combat the possible disease is the deep significance in celebrating the NAVRATRI. Our body acts as a fortress; and body’s immune system is the army that defends our body-systems from the outside environment and foreign bodies such as micro organism, bacteria and viruses. In Sanskrit fortress is called DURG, That is why these two periods have been termed as NAV DURGA also. It signifies that we should renew our body system (DURGA) by detoxifying by keeping ast, purifying the environment by HAVAN or YAGYA. Also we need to get rid of all the negative feelings and emotions. Our nervous system needs to be strengthened by performing a specific meditation (SADHANA) each night of NAVRATRI in the manner specified for that (NAV DURGA) day in order to rejuvenate our mind and nerves in order to make our body capable to fight disease and get success in life.
There are seven centres of energy or Shakti in the body called energy centres (chakras in Sanskrit). In modern medical science, we are studying about the sensing nerves and motor nerves passing through the spinal cord and connecting different parts of the body to the brain. The Chakras are thought to represent the whole body with the Devi in different forms, residing in different chakras. Different emotions are linked with each of these energy centres.
These chakras manage our body’s energy. They receive, assimilate and distribute energy to our energy centres. Malfunctioning of chakras triggered by negative thoughts and actions may restrict the movements of the life force from one to other and cause the energy system to haywire. You could fall ill. So tuning of the chakras continually is vital for regular upkeep of physical, mental and emotional health. Balancing chakras is central to our wellbeing.
1st DAY Goddess Durga Shailputri: Goddess Shailputri is that divine root chakra (MOOLADHAR CHAKRA) that helps devottes begin their path of self realization. The first chakra, muladhara, is located in the base of the spine. Here, the energy manifests as inertia or enthusiasm. The root chakra rules the base of the spine, the rectum, lower limbs and supports the physical body, bones, and immune system. It also controls your mental and emotional thought patterns that can cause an imbalance.
Belief patterns stored in the root chakra include beliefs about family, community, law and justice, society, sexuality, survival issues, including thoughts of retaliation and revenge, and an inability to grow and express one’s self within the family.
Physical dysfunction related to imbalances leads to chronic lower back pain, varicose veins, rectal tumour or cancer, depression, and immune-related disorders.
During the Navratri puja, the devotee focus their minds towards the root chakra at the bottom of the spinal cord, which is the beginning of their spiritual discipline. When we begin to evaluate our beliefs honestly, we find that certain beliefs once valid are no longer so, and that we can get rid of them. So, we can get rid of beliefs that work against our well-being and happiness, substituting them with valid beliefs and higher values. One way is to make positive statements and be peaceful.
When awakened, begins the journey upwards. Since she begins her journey upwards, her puja is said to ring in success in all forms.
2nd Day Goddess Durga Bramhacharini: By worshiping this form of Goddess Durga, one develops the intent of sacrifice for creativity. For this concentration is required to wards the second energy centre, swadhistana chakra. It is the sex centre just four inches above the base of the spine vibrating from the pubic bone. This chakra controls the sexual instincts. Here energy manifests as pro-creativity or creativity. This creation is a mental product rather than a physical one. Creativity gives one a pleasure and wonder that child feels on seeing a new object. Hence by balancing this chakra, one becomes creative. This chakra is linked with the Adrenal gland which secretes a hormone named Adrenaline. When this gland functions well and there is no blockage of energy, one is vey self confident. Adrenaline induces enthusiasm, courage, faith and strength etc. and prepares the body and mind to endure or react in cold, heat, defence, struggle, self defence etc. Under the influence of this hormone one tries to create his own identity and existence. He also make an effort to know his own self.
3rd Day Goddess Durga Chandraghanta: By worshipping this form of Goddess Durga, the Manipur Chakra is awakened in the worshipper. The third chakra, manipura, is in the navel region located on the solar plexus in the lower thoracic area, at the controlling point of the pancreas. Here energy manifests as four emotions: Generosity , joy, greed and jealousy (two positive and two negative emotions). Pancreas is the corresponding gland of this chakra. This chakra helps in producing digestive juices and a hormone named insuline which oxidises glucose and provides strength to the body. When this chakra is completely balanced one sees himself in the family, society country and everywhere. His relation with others will always be cordial. Everyone likes meeting him. In case of imbalance one feels lonely and neglected. Activation of this chakra grants one the gift of speech and he becomes a gifted speaker and orator.
4th Day Goddess Durga Kushmanda: By worshipping this form of Goddess Durga, theAnahat Chakra or cardiac chakra is awakened in the worshipper. or cardiac chakra. The fourth Chakra, anahata, is located in the chest region where energy manifests as three emotions love, fear and hatred. The Thymus gland which motivates the body to fight bacteria and viruses is also located here. Anahat chakra is the centre of love and compassion — not possession or selfish emotions — located in the thoracic region, lies in the heart, (the solar plexus) and is associated with air (atmosphere) i.e. related with Vata. It emits a mysterious cosmic vibration as of un-struck sound. That is sound beyond the realm of senses. This gland is active in childhood and lies inert on his growing into an adult. Inactivity of this chakra may result in problems related to the lungs, liver and blood circulating system. An active and balanced chakra ensures emotional satisfaction and his heart is always full of love for everyone without any ill will for anyone. Activation of this chakra Opens the way to self realisation. Inactivity and imbalance of this chakra may present problem to heart and chest and emotional problem. So the worshipper is bestowed with the boon of long and trouble free life as the anahat chakra in him awakes.
5th Day Goddess Durga Skand Mata: By meditating on this form of Goddess paying attention on the vishuddhi Chakra, which is located in the throat region where energy manifests as two emotions gratitude and grief. Thyroid and Para-thyroid glands are also positioned here which help in the physical and mental development. These glands keep on check on the level of iodine and calcium in the body and maintain the strength of the bones. If this chakra is inactive and unbalanced there may be diseases related to thyroid gland and throat and find himself in pain and sadness without any obvious reason. Everything in the world appears to him wrong. Vishuddhi chakra is the seat of art and higher forms of creativity governing the highest physical aspect of creation, art, definitely over and above other physical aspects of creation.. All artists have a pronounced vishuddhi chakra, but this centre is also directly connected with the swadhishthan. When this chakra is awakened, one starts feeling that I am one with Supreme Power i.e. oneness. It penetrates thyroid glands also and digestion increases.
6th Day Goddess Durga Katyayani: By worshipping Goddess Katyayani, the worshipper is bestowed with awakening of AGYA CHAKRA. The Agya chakra is located between the eyebrows where energy manifests as anger and alertness. Pituitary gland (referred to as master gland) is also located here. This chakra provides soundness to the mental state of a person. One is able to accomplish his tasks with determination and zeal. He is also able to exercise a strict control over his sensory organs. Here, Devi is six-faced, representing the five senses (sight, hearing, smell, touch, taste) and the mind.
7th Day Goddess Durga Kaalratri: While worshipping this Goddess, one should start experiencing that energy from the sun is coming and energising the whole body. By this all the ill effects caused due to diseases get permanently over.
8th Day Goddess Durga Gauri: On 8th day (Astami) Navratri, the devotees worship Mother Gauri by experiencing that their mind is being filled with coolness emanating from the moon and slowly their mind is becoming quiet and calm.
9th Day Goddess Durga ‘Siddhidatri’: When the whole body has already been made free of toxicity and energised and also mind is calm and quiet, one is to pray the Goddess Siddhidatri to bestow with success in all walks of life.
These chakras manage our body’s energy. Tuning of the chakras continually is vital for regular upkeep of physical, mental and emotional health. Balancing chakras is central to our wellbeing.