It is said that the Goddess descends on Earth in the month of Chaitra, the first month of the year in the Hindu Calendar. Her divine arrival, her light and the feminine power she embodies and brings to Earth is celebrated as the nine-night festival of Navratri.
Just a day after the March New Moon (21st) the playful and energetic Hindu celebrations begin.
Have you been feeling into the depths of your emotions? Have there been powerful releases of grief and anger? Perhaps the numbness within has finally started to move. This liberation within is a reflection of natural law; the changes of season; the power of Prakriti — the life-death-life cycles of the the Devī — who is prana shakti manifested as creation.
In these early days of Vasant (Spring) Navratri, we are experiencing the shift of the seasons, there is a transformation occurring within nature, and as the microcosm, us living beings are experiencing this shift in our minds and bodies. The miracle of the natural world and its battle of light and dark forces are captured by the Vedic narrative, the Devī Māhātmyam, whose powerful symbology reflects the battle of our own inner nature; the ongoing war within the mind, this scripture therefore becomes a Yoga śāstra, guiding the way to moksha.
The root word of Devī in Sanskrit is ‘Div’ — meaning to glow, be bright and beautiful. Its masculine term, ‘Devah’ denotes a radiant light. Going further, ‘Devata’ incorporates the meaning of the one who is ‘playful’ as well as ‘to protect’, therefore the Devī signifies the self-illumined feminine being who is both the one who creates the play of life (līlā) and its guardian.
In the following video presentation, I share the meaning of why we celebrate the nine nights of the Goddess, known as Navratri. What if the Devī is the ultimate, independent reality that is seeking to experience itself? What is her power? How does she operate the world? And to what end? This is an enquiry into her divine nature, intelligence, will and purpose.
As we come to understand her unparalleled power through the seminal narratives, The Devī Māhātmyam from the Mārkaṇḍeya Upanishad, along with the Rg Vedic hymns embedded in the narrative (the Rātri and Devi Sūkta) and Vyas’ Devi Gita, I demonstrate that the mother divine is the embodiment and vision of wholeness, the force that imbues life (and death) with sacred order, and provides the liberation from suffering.
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