Saturday, 2 July 2011

Goddess Jagadhatri: A Form of Goddess Durga

 Goddess Jagadhatri is another manifestation of Goddess Durga (Shakti). In ancient Hindu Texts, Tantras and Puranas, this form of the goddess Durga is depicted as a symbol of Shakti (Power). She is depicted having three eyes and four arms holding conch, discus, bow and arrow respectively. She is depicted with red clothes and bright jewels. She is represented with garland of snake around her neck and body. Riding on a lion over the dead body of Karindrasura, the Elephant Demon, she also symbolizes the victory of divine powers upon the demonic powers.

Goddess Jagaddhatri or Jagadhatri is the protector of the world, who is also known as Karindrasuranisudini (the slayer of the elephant demon), Maheshwari (the Great Goddess), Shaktacharpriya (the Goddess who loves to be worshipped as according to the practices of the Shakta sect of Hinduism or Shaktism) and Adharabhuta (the Bearer of the World) etc. She is the savior of the universe who protected the world from the cruel demons.

Goddess Durga is one of the most religiously worshipped deities in West Bengal and many festivals are celebrated in the state in praise of her only. Jagaddhatri or Jagadhatri puja is one of the great festivals celebrated in West Bengal by the devotees of goddess Durga with great enthusiasm and zest. It is essentially the worship of Shakti and a major Hindu festival in Kolkata, after Durga Puja and Kali Puja. According to the Hindi calendar, Jagadhatri Puja is celebrated on Karthik Shukla Navami, the ninth day during Karthik month, in West Bengal. This festival signifies the ending of evil or darkness and arrival of light or happiness. Though, Goddess Jagadhatri is worshipped all over West Bengal, the celebrations in Chandannagar, Hoogly and Krishnanagar are very special in terms of their grandeur and popular.

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