Navaratri is a Hindu festival where durations are nine nights (and ten days) and celebrated twice every year.
Navratri is about the great battle between the mighty demon Mahishasura and Goddess Durga. A woman can only defeat Mahishasura, so Lord Vishnu decided to create a woman to defeat Mahishasura. As per Lord Brahma’s boon, none but only a woman can conquer the demon. Mahishasura attacked the Trilok–earth, heaven, and hell.
Goddess Durga was born after the three powerful deities – Brahma, Vishnu, and Mahesh (Shiva), fought Mahishasura for fifteen long days. It was a fight that quaked the Trilok—earth, heaven, and hell. The shrewd Mahishasura kept changing his form to confuse his rival- Goddess Durga, during the battle. Ultimately, when the demon took the form of a buffalo, the Goddess Durga pierced his chest with her ‘Trishul,’ killing him right at that moment.
Every year, on each day of Navratri, an incarnation of “Goddess Durga” is worshipped to celebrate the victory over Mahishasura and the ultimate defeat of ‘Good over Evil.” These nine days are solely dedicated to Goddess Durga and her nine Avatars – the Navadurga. Each day is associated with an incarnation of the goddess
Day 1 – Shailaputri
This day, known as Pratipada, is associated with Shailaputri (literally “Daughter of Mountain”), an incarnation of Parvati.
Day 2 – Brahmacharini
On Dwitiya, Goddess Brahmacharini, another incarnation of Parvati, is worshiped. In this form, Parvati became Sati, her unmarried self.
Day 3 – Chandraghanta
Tritiya commemorates the worship of Chandraghanta – the name derived from the fact that after marrying Shiva, Parvati adorned her forehead with the ardhachandra
Day 4 – Kushmanda
Goddess Kushmanda is worshiped on Chaturthi. Believed to be the creative power of the universe, Kushmanda associated with the endowment of vegetation on earth, and hence, the color of the day is Green.
Day 5 – Skandamata
Skandamata, the goddess worshiped on Panchami, is the mother of Skanda (or Kartikeya).
Day 6 – Katyayani
Born to sage Katyayana, she is an incarnation of Durga and is shown to exhibit courage, symbolized by the color Orange.
Day 7 – Kalaratri
Considered the most ferocious form of Goddess Durga, Kalaratri is revered on Saptami. It is believed that Parvati removed her fair skin to kill the demons Sumbha and Nisumbha.
Day 8 – Mahagauri
Mahagauri symbolizes intelligence and peace. The color associated with this day is Pink, which depicts optimism.
Day 9 – Sidhidatri
On the last day of the festival, also known as Navami, people pray to Siddhidhatri. Sitting on a lotus, she is believed to possess and bestows all types of Siddhis.