The festival of Navratri is associated with the prominent battle that took place between Maa Durga and the rakshasa, Mahishasura. In this way it celebrates the victory of Good over Evil. These nine days are dedicated exquisitely to Goddess Durga and her nine Avatars. Each day is important and is distinctly associated with an incarnation of the Goddess. Each different form is entitled a specific name and colour, with a significant meaning.
The nine forms of the Goddess are as follows:
Day 1: Shailaputri
Known as Pratipada, this day is associated with Shailaputri (which means “Daughter of the Mountain”). Shailaputri was an incarnation of Ma Parvati. This form of the Goddess is worshiped as the consort of Shiva; she is depicted as riding the bull, Nandi, with a trishula in her right hand and a lotus in her left hand. Shailaputri is considered to be the direct incarnation of Mahakali. The color of the day is red, which depicts action and vigor.
Day 2: Brahmacharini
On Dwitiya, Ma Parvati is worshiped in another form….as Brahmacharini. In this form, Parvati became Sati and immolates herself. Brahmacharini is worshiped for emancipation or moksha and endowment of peace and prosperity. She is shown walking bare feet and holding a japamala and kamandal in her hands. She symbolizes bliss and calm. Blue being the color code of this day, depicts tranquility yet strong energy.
Day 3: Chandraghanta
Tritiya commemorates the worship of Chandraghanta – the name derived from the fact that after marrying Shiva, Parvati adorned her forehead with half-chandra (lit. moon). She is considered as the epitome of beauty and is also symbolic of bravery. Yellow, a vibrant n vivacious colour, is the colour of the third day. This bright colour peps up everyone’s mood.
Day 4: Kushmanda
Chaturthi marks the worshipping of Goddess Kushmanda, who is believed to be the creative power of the universe. Kushmanda is associated with the endowment of vegetation on earth and hence, the color of the day is Green. She is depicted as having eight arms and sits on a Tiger.
Day 5: Skandmata
Skandamata, the goddess worshiped on Panchami, is the mother of Skanda (or Kartikeya). The color Grey is symbolic of the transforming strength of a mother when she sees her child facing danger. She is depicted riding a ferocious lion, having four arms and holding her baby.
Day 6: Katyayani
Born to a sage, Katyayana, is an incarnation of Durga. She is shown to be exhibiting courage, which is symbolized by the color Orange. Known as the warrior Goddess, she is considered one of the most violent forms of Goddess Parvati. In this avatar, Kātyāyanī rides a lion and has four hands.
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. The color of the day is White. On Saptami, the Goddess appears in a white colour attire with a lot of rage in her fiery eyes and her skin turns black. The white colour portrays prayer and peace and ensures the devotees that the Goddess will protect them from all types of harm.
Day 8: Mahagauri
Mahagauri symbolizes intelligence and peace. The color associated with this day is Pink which stands for positivity and optimism.
Day 9: Sidhidatri
On the last day of the festival, which is also known as Navami, people pray to Siddhidhatri. Sitting on a lotus, she is believed to possess and bestow all types of Siddhis. Here she has four hands and is also known as Saraswati Devi. The light blue colour of the day portrays an admiration towards nature’s beauty.
So, Navratri, as the name suggests, is a festival of nine nights…. and also nine days.
Though it is majorly a Hindu festival, it is celebrated with great fervor n zest by many other religions too. All nine days people wear colorful clothes n play the Garba and dandiya.
The 10th day is Dassera when huge effigies of Ravana are burnt. This is because it was on this day, that Lord Rama had gained victory over Ravana and brought Sita Ma back to their fo