Today is Vijayathasami – the 10th day after Navarathri – the nine days and nights of the Hindu Goddesses Sarawsathy, Luxmi & Dyrga.
What happens on this day?
here’s a blog extract I wrote..
The 10th day is the day of victory, and culmination of all the prayers and festivities. Such deeply significant religious festivities have variations of purpose and underlying mythology, as India is a vast land with many religious sects (even within Hinduism – which is a collective name, and not a specific one).
Ramayanam- Hindu epic of Lord Rama (shown here slaying the demon Ravanan)
Myth of Ramayana: As such, some celebrate the return of mythical Hero Rama (crown Prince) who was exiled with his wife Sita into the forest for 14 years, by some trickery of his step-mother. In his time in the forest, Rama’s wife Sita is abducted by a demon (Ravanan) and taken to an island and kept in prison. Rama gathers an army of forest beings – monkeys, apes, wild boars and even squirrels, constricts a mighty bridge to travel to the island of Lanka (now known as Sri Lanka) to wage war, defeat the demon and rescue his wife from her prison. By this time the 14 years have passed (supposed terms of the exile) and Rama returns to his father’s Kingdon, and takes up his rightful place on the throne. `Vijayathasami’ (great tenth day) symbolises this day of Victory and return to power.
Either on the ninth night or 10th day (morning) a special prayer / pooja called `Ayutha Pooja’ (Prayer for weapons) is conducted. This is when tools of the trade for all those of a household – pens, books, pencils, cheque books, house keys, financial ledgers, as well as the mote traditional items of agricultural equipments, machinery are symbolically decorated, placed on the foot of the stepped altar and worshipped. The idea is to seek the blessings of the Goddess Shakthi upon those tools of trade and life. Then those are taken and used. Many teachers/Schools in India / Sri Lanka (southern Indian nations) start teaching Kindergarten children on that day- first by taking them to the temple, and having the priest guide their fingers in writing the alphabets on a plate of rice grains!
Read the full blog on Navarathri
Blessings of Durga – warrior Goddess who slays Demons ..within and without!
Related Hindu topics I have written about
Shivarathri – Long night o of Lord Shiva
Vinayagar Shaturthi – Birth and myths of Elephant headed God Ganesh