Also known as Shardiya Navratri, this is the most popular Hindu festivals in India and also the most prominent Navratri among all other Navratris. It is celebrated over a stretch of nine days, hence, the name ‘’Navratri’’ as ‘’Nav’’ denotes the number nine. This year in 2017, it will be observed from the 21st of September, Thursday till the 29th of September, Friday. Due to being the most popular Navratri, it is also commonly referred to as ‘’Maha Navratri.’’ According to the traditional Hindu calendar, Navratri annually falls in the month of Ashwin during the time of Sharad Ritu, which as per the Gregorian calendar falls in the month of September or October. All these nine days of Navratri are dedicated to the different avatars of Goddess Shakti. The nine days finally reach their culmination on the 10th day, which is celebrated in the whole of India as Dussehra or Vijaya Dashami.
As per Hindu traditions, on each day of Navratri one colour is chosen to be worn, making it nine different colours, for nine different days of Navratri. The colours are chosen on weekday, with each weekday being ruled by different planets from the navagrahas (the nine planets in the solar system), and it is mainly the women in the states of Gujarat and Maharashtra who religiously follow this tradition during Navratri.
Devotees celebrate the Navratri festival by fasting, offering prayers, performing rituals for Goddess Shakti. They also enjoy the festivities with dance and music, two of the most popular of which are: Garba and Raas Dandiya, both traditional folk dances from the state of Gujarat. The schedule of the Navratri days is below:
-Varad Vinayaka Chauth
-Upand Lalita Vrat
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