Navratri is a nine-day festival that is celebrated by Hindus across the world. While there are four seasonal Navratris that are celebrated every year, the celebration of Chaitra Navratri in the spring season and Sharad Navratri that welcomes the winters are said to be the most important. Chaitra Navratri 2021 celebrations will begin on April 13 and will go on till April 22. Devotees often celebrate Chaitra Navratri by observing a stringent Navratri fast, offering prayers to Goddess Durga or Shakti in all her forms. Navratri celebrations begin with the Ghatasthapana Puja and there are various rituals that are followed on each of the nine days during this festive period. As we prepare to celebrate Chaitra Navratri 2021, here is everything you need to know about this spring festival.

When is Chaitra Navratri 2021?

As mentioned before, the 9-day celebration of Chaitra Navratri begins on April 13, with Ghatasthapana Puja. The celebration of Navratri will go on till April 22. Each day of Chaitra Navratri will be filled with various festivities and rituals. Devotees worship Goddess Shakti and pray for salvation on this day. Each day of Navratri is dedicated to celebrating different avatars of Goddess Shakti.

Significance of Ghatasthapana Puja

Ghatasthapana is one of the most significant parts of the Navratri celebration, which is observed in both Chaitra Navratri as well as Sharad Navratri. It is said to be the invocation of Goddess Shakti into our homes. Ghatasthapna 2021 will be performed on April 13. The Ghatasthapana Muhurat begins from 6.23 am on April 13 and goes on till 10.16 am.

Day 1 or Pratipada - April 13 - Shailputri Puja

The first day of Navratri, also known as Pratipada is dedicated to Goddess Shailputri, an incarnation of Goddess Parvati. Depicted with a Trishul in hand and riding the Nandi, Goddess Shailputri is said to be the direct incarnation of Mahakali. Shailputri Puja is conducted by singing aartis and offering prayer to the Goddess, who is also known as the Daughter of Mountain.

Day 2 or Dwitiya - April 14 - Brahmacharini Puja

On the second day of Chaitra Navratri, Goddess Brahmacharini is worshipped by the devotees. Another incarnation of Parvati, Brahmacharini is said to be worshipped for moksha or emancipation. She is said to bring peace and prosperity to the family and Brahmacharini Puja is conducted by devotees who are praying for the well being of their family.

Day 3 or Tritiya - April 15 - Chandraghanta Puja

The Tritiya during Chaitra Navratri is dedicated to Goddess Chandraghanta. After her marriage to Lord Shiva, Goddess Parvati donned the Ardha Chandra on her forehead, bringing her the name of Chandraghanta. An embodiment of bravery and beauty, Goddess Chandraghanta is said to bring peace to all her devotees. This day is also celebrated as Saubhagya Teej.

Day 4 or Chaturthi - April 16 - Kushmanda Puja

Goddess Kushmanda is worshipped on Chaturthi of Chaitra Navratri. Depicted as having eight arms and sitting on a Tiger, Goddess Kushmanda is said to be the creator of the entire universe. This day is also celebrated as Vinayak Chaturthi and people believe that observing a fast on this day helps them end their problems in life.

Day 5 or Panchami - April 17 - Skandamata Puja

On the fifth day of Navratri, Goddess Skandamata is worshipped. Mother of Lord Kartikeya (Skanda), Skandamata is depicted as riding a ferocious lion while holding her baby. She is said to embody the transforming power of a mother who leaves no stones unturned to protect her child.

Day 6 or Shashti - April 18 - Katyayani Puja

Goddess Katyayani is said to be one of the most violent forms of Devi and is celebrated on the sixth day of Navratri. She is said to be an embodiment of courage and bravery and is also known as the Goddess Parvati.

Day 7 or Saptami - April 19 - Kaalaratri Puja

Kaalaratri Puja, performed on the seventh day of Navratri is dedicated to this rage-filled form of Goddess Parvati who is said to protect her devotees from harm’s way. Goddess Parvati is said to have taken this form to kill the demons Shumbha and Nishumbha and it is said to be the most ferocious form of Goddess Shakti.

Day 8 or Ashtami - April 20 - Mahagauri Puja

The eight-day of Navratri are filled with various important events. It is dedicated to Goddess Mahagauri who symbolizes intelligence and peace. After killing the demons as Kaalaratri, Goddess Shakti is said to have taken bath in the Holy Ganges and turned to this form. Sandhi Puja is also performed on this day, at the juncture when Ashtami Tithi ends and Navami Tithi begins.

Day 9 or Navami - April 21 - Rama Navami

While the ninth day of Navratri is dedicated to Goddess Siddhidatri, this day has a different significance during Chaitra Navratri. It is celebrated as Rama Navami and will fall on April 21. Lord Ram is said to be born on the Navami tithi in the Hindu month of Chaitra during Shukla Paksha. This day is celebrated with special fervour in North India.

Day 10 or Dashami - Navratri Parana

The last day of Navratri is celebrated as Dashami. The stringent 9-day fast observed during Chaitra Navratri is broken when the Navami tithi ends. This is known as Navratri Parana. The Chaitra Navratri Parana Time begins after 06:16 AM on April 22.

We hope that this Chaitra Navratri fills your life with peace and prosperity. Happy Chaitra Navratri.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 09, 2021 12:02 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website