Hindu devotees begin nine nights of Durga puja – Newspaper
KARACHI: Many Hindu temples in the city have started celebrating the nine days or nine nights, known as Shubh Navratri Festival from Monday.
The nine-night festival also includes nine days of 24-hour fasting, and it all begins on the new moon according to the Hindu calendar.
Then each of the nine evenings is dedicated to honoring the nine manifestations of the Hindu Goddess Durga, known for her strength, power and ability to protect the weak in Hindu mythology.
The first night of Navratri marks the puja ceremony to celebrate Shailputri Mata. It is followed by a similar celebration for Brahmacharini on the second night, Maa Chandraghanta on the third, Kushmanda on the fourth, Skandamata on the fifth, Katyayani on the sixth, Kaalraatri on the seventh, and Mahagauri and Siddhidatri on the eighth and ninth nights.
There are scripture readings, devotional music and dandia (stick) performances as groups of female devotees dressed in pretty dresses and saris with lots of jewelry dance around the beautifully decorated deities, which are followed by prayers specials for blessings and shakti (strength).
24-hour fasts are broken after prayers with the distribution of prasad (devotional offering) prepared directly at temples by faithful volunteers, some of whom could be seen peeling potatoes or peas or cleaning rice earlier In the evening.
Posted in Dawn, September 27, 2022