Durga

Durga

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For the 1985 Hindi Film of Rajesh Khanna
Rajesh Khanna
Rajesh Khanna is an Indian actor of from Hindi films, and has been Hindi film producer and an Indian politician....

 see Durgaa
Durgaa
Durgaa is an Indian Hindi film directed by Shibu Mitra, released on 12 July, 1985. The film stars Hema Malini in the title role of the film...


In Hinduism
Hinduism
Hinduism is the predominant and indigenous religious tradition of the Indian Subcontinent. Hinduism is known to its followers as , amongst many other expressions...

, Durga ; (listen: ); meaning "the inaccessible" or "the invincible"; , durga) or Maa Durga , meaning "Mother Durga") "one who can redeem in situations of utmost distress" is a form of Devi
Devi
Devī is the Sanskrit word for Goddess, used mostly in Hinduism, its related masculine term is deva. Devi is synonymous with Shakti, the female aspect of the divine, as conceptualized by the Shakta tradition of Hinduism. She is the female counterpart without whom the male aspect, which represents...

, the supremely radiant goddess
Goddess
A goddess is a female deity. In some cultures goddesses are associated with Earth, motherhood, love, and the household. In other cultures, goddesses also rule over war, death, and destruction as well as healing....

, depicted as having eighteen arms, riding a lion
Lion
The lion is one of the four big cats in the genus Panthera, and a member of the family Felidae. With some males exceeding 250 kg in weight, it is the second-largest living cat after the tiger...

 or a tiger
Tiger
The tiger is the largest cat species, reaching a total body length of up to and weighing up to . Their most recognizable feature is a pattern of dark vertical stripes on reddish-orange fur with lighter underparts...

, carrying weapons and a lotus
Lotus (plant)
Lotus identifies various plant taxa:* Nelumbo, a genus of aquatic plants with showy flowers** Nelumbo nucifera, the Sacred or Indian lotus** Nelumbo lutea, the American or Yellow lotus...

 flower, maintaining a meditative smile, and practicing mudra
Mudra
A mudrā is a symbolic or ritual gesture in Hinduism and Buddhism. While some mudrās involve the entire body, most are performed with the hands and fingers...

s, or symbolic hand gestures. The name is made of Sanskrit dur- = "with difficulty" (compare Greek δυσ- (dys-)) and ("come", "go").

For Shaktas the eternal virgin Durga is Adi Shakti (the original power) , Adi Maya(the original illusion caster) and the material manifestation of the Brahman
Brahman
In Hinduism, Brahman is the one supreme, universal Spirit that is the origin and support of the phenomenal universe. Brahman is sometimes referred to as the Absolute or Godhead which is the Divine Ground of all being...

 (Supreme Absolute Godhead)

An embodiment of creative feminine force (Shakti
Shakti
Shakti from Sanskrit shak - "to be able," meaning sacred force or empowerment, is the primordial cosmic energy and represents the dynamic forces that are thought to move through the entire universe in Hinduism. Shakti is the concept, or personification, of divine feminine creative power, sometimes...

), Durga exists in a state of svātantrya
Svatantrya
Svātantrya is the Kashmiri Shaivite concept of divine sovereignty...

 (independence from the universe and anything/anybody else, i.e., self-sufficiency) and fierce compassion.Durga manifests fearlessness and patience, and never loses her sense of humor, even during spiritual battles of epic proportion.

At the Durga Puja
Durga Puja
Durga puja ; দুর্গা পূজা,ଦୁର୍ଗା ପୂଜା,‘Worship of Durga’), also referred to as Durgotsava ; , is an annual Hindu festival in South Asia that celebrates worship of the Hindu goddess Durga. It refers to all the six days observed as Mahalaya, Shashthi, Maha Saptami, Maha Ashtami, Maha Navami and...

 festival, Durga is shown as the mother of Ganesha
Ganesha
Ganesha , also spelled Ganesa or Ganesh, also known as Ganapati , Vinayaka , and Pillaiyar , is one of the deities best-known and most widely worshipped in the Hindu pantheon. His image is found throughout India and Nepal. Hindu sects worship him regardless of affiliations...

, Kartikeya, Lakshmi
Lakshmi
Lakshmi or Lakumi is the Hindu goddess of wealth, prosperity , light, wisdom, fortune, fertility, generosity and courage; and the embodiment of beauty, grace and charm. Representations of Lakshmi are also found in Jain monuments...

 and Saraswati
Saraswati
In Hinduism Saraswati , is the goddess of knowledge, music, arts, science and technology. She is the consort of Brahma, also revered as His Shakti....

.

History



The word Shakti
Shakti
Shakti from Sanskrit shak - "to be able," meaning sacred force or empowerment, is the primordial cosmic energy and represents the dynamic forces that are thought to move through the entire universe in Hinduism. Shakti is the concept, or personification, of divine feminine creative power, sometimes...

means divine feminine; energy/force/power, and Durga is the warrior aspect of the Divine Mother.

As a goddess, Durga's feminine power contains the combined energies of all the gods. Each of her weapons was given to her by various gods: Rudra's trident, Vishnu's discus, Indra's thunderbolt, Brahma's kamandalu
Kamandalu
Kamandalu or Kamandal or Kamandalam is an oblong water pot made of a dry gourd or coconut shell or metal or wood of Kamandalataru tree or from clay, usually with a handle and sometimes with a spout. Hindu ascetics or yogis often use it for storing drinking water...

, Kuber's Ratnahar, etc.

According to a narrative in the Devi Mahatmya
Devi Mahatmya
The Devi Mahatmyam or Devi Mahatmya , or "Glory of the Goddess") is a Hindu text describing the victory of the goddess Durga over the demon Mahishasura. As part of the Markandeya Purana, it is one of the Puranas or secondary Hindu scriptures, and was composed in Sanskrit around c...

 story of the Markandeya Purana
Markandeya Purana
The Markandeya Purana is one of the major eighteen Mahapuranas, a genre of Hindu religious texts. It is written in the style of a dialogue between the ancient sage Markandeya and Jaimini, a disciple of Vyasa.-Contents:...

 text, Durga was created as a warrior goddess to fight an asura
Asura
-In Hinduism:In Hinduism, the Asuras constitute a group of power-seeking deities, sometimes considered sinful and materialistic. The Daityas and Danavas were combinedly known as Asuras. The Asura were opposed to the Devas. Both groups are children of Kasyapa...

 (an inhuman force/demon) named Mahishasura
Mahishasura
In Hindu mythology, Mahishasura was an asura.Mahishasura's father Rambha was king of the asuras, and he once fell in love with a water buffalo ; Mahishasura was born out of this union...

. He had unleashed a reign of terror on earth, heaven and the nether worlds, and he could not be defeated by any man or god, anywhere. The gods went to Brahma
Brahma
Brahma is the Hindu god of creation and one of the Trimurti, the others being Vishnu and Shiva. According to the Brahma Purana, he is the father of Mānu, and from Mānu all human beings are descended. In the Ramayana and the...

, who had given Mahishasura the power not to be defeated by a man. Brahma could do nothing. They made Brahma their leader and went to Vaikuntha—the place where Vishnu lay on Ananta Naag
Shesha
In Hindu tradition, Shesha or Sheshanaag is the king of all nagas, one of the primal beings of creation, and according to the Bhagavata Purana, an Avatar of the Supreme God known as Sankarshan. In the Puranas, Shesha is said to hold all the planets of the Universe on his hoods and to constantly...

. They found both Vishnu
Vishnu
Vishnu is the Supreme god in the Vaishnavite tradition of Hinduism. Smarta followers of Adi Shankara, among others, venerate Vishnu as one of the five primary forms of God....

 and Shiva
Shiva
Shiva is a major Hindu deity, and is the destroyer god or transformer among the Trimurti, the Hindu Trinity of the primary aspects of the divine. God Shiva is a yogi who has notice of everything that happens in the world and is the main aspect of life. Yet one with great power lives a life of a...

, and Brahma eloquently related the reign of terror Mahishasur had unleashed on the three worlds. Hearing this Vishnu, Shiva and all of the gods became very angry and beams of fierce light emerged from their bodies. The blinding sea of light met at the Ashram of a priest named Katyayan and Durga emerged from this pool of light. The goddess Durga took the name Katyaayani from the priest and emerged from the sea of light. She introduced herself in the language of the Rig-Veda, saying she was the form of the supreme Brahman who had created all the gods. Now she had come to fight the demon to save the gods. They did not create her; it was her lila that she emerged from their combined energy. The gods were blessed with her compassion.

It is said that upon initially encountering Durga, Mahishasura underestimated her, thinking: "How can a woman kill me, Mahishasur—the one who has defeated the trinity of gods?". However, Durga roared with laughter, which caused an earthquake
Earthquake
An earthquake is the result of a sudden release of energy in the Earth's crust that creates seismic waves. The seismicity, seismism or seismic activity of an area refers to the frequency, type and size of earthquakes experienced over a period of time...

 which made Mahishasur aware of her powers.

And the terrible Mahishasura rampaged against her, changing forms many times. First he was a buffalo
Water buffalo
The water buffalo is a domesticated bovid widely kept in Asia, Europe and South America.Water buffalo can also refer to:*Wild water buffalo , the wild ancestor of the domestic water buffalo...

 demon, and she defeated him with her sword. Then he changed forms and became an elephant that tied up the goddess's lion and began to pull it towards him. The goddess cut off his trunk with her sword. The demon Mahishasur continued his terrorizing, taking the form of a lion, and then the form of a man, but both of them were gracefully slain by Durga.

Then Mahishasur began attacking once more, starting to take the form of a buffalo again. The patient goddess became very angry, and proclaimed to Mahishasur in a colorful tone—"Roar with delight while you still can, O illiterate demon, because when I will kill you, the gods themselves will roar with delight". When Mahishasur had half emerged into his buffalo form, he was paralyzed by the extreme light emitting from the goddess's body. The goddess then resounded with laughter before cutting Mahishasur's head down with her sword.

Thus Durga slew Mahishasur, thus is the power of the fierce compassion of Durga. Hence, Mata Durga is also known as Mahishasurmardhini—the slayer of Mahishasur. According to one legend, the goddess Durga created an army to fight against the forces of the demon-king Mahishasur, who was terrorizing Heaven and Earth. After ten days of fighting, Durga and her army defeated Mahishasur and killed him. As a reward for their service, Durga bestowed upon her army the knowledge of jewelry-making. Ever since, the Sonara community has been involved in the jewelry profession.

The goddess, as Mahisasuramardhini, appears quite early in Indian art. The Archaeological Museum in Matura has several statues on display including a 6-armed Kushana period Mahisasuramardhini that depicts her pressing down the buffalo with her lower hands. A Nagar plaque from the first century BC - first century AD depicts a 4-armed Mahisamardhini accompanied by a lion. But it is in the Gupta period that we see the finest representations of Mahisasuramardhini (2-, 4-, 6-, and at Udayagiri, 12-armed). The spear and trident are her most common weapons. A Mamallapuram relief shows the goddess with 8 arms riding her lion subduing a buffalo-faced demon (as contrasted with a buffalo demon); a variation also seen at Ellora. In later sculptures (post-seventh Century), sculptures show the goddess having decapitated the buffalo demon.

Worship






The four day long (Saptami to Dashami) Durga Puja
Durga Puja
Durga puja ; দুর্গা পূজা,ଦୁର୍ଗା ପୂଜା,‘Worship of Durga’), also referred to as Durgotsava ; , is an annual Hindu festival in South Asia that celebrates worship of the Hindu goddess Durga. It refers to all the six days observed as Mahalaya, Shashthi, Maha Saptami, Maha Ashtami, Maha Navami and...

 is the biggest annual festival in Bengal
Bengal
Bengal is a historical and geographical region in the northeast region of the Indian Subcontinent at the apex of the Bay of Bengal. Today, it is mainly divided between the sovereign land of People's Republic of Bangladesh and the Indian state of West Bengal, although some regions of the previous...

, Assam
Assam
Assam , also, rarely, Assam Valley and formerly the Assam Province , is a northeastern state of India and is one of the most culturally and geographically distinct regions of the country...

, Orissa
Orissa
Orissa , officially Odisha since Nov 2011, is a state of India, located on the east coast of India, by the Bay of Bengal. It is the modern name of the ancient nation of Kalinga, which was invaded by the Maurya Emperor Ashoka in 261 BC. The modern state of Orissa was established on 1 April...

, Bihar
Bihar
Bihar is a state in eastern India. It is the 12th largest state in terms of geographical size at and 3rd largest by population. Almost 58% of Biharis are below the age of 25, which is the highest proportion in India....

, Jharkhand
Jharkhand
Jharkhand is a state in eastern India. It was carved out of the southern part of Bihar on 15 November 2000. Jharkhand shares its border with the states of Bihar to the north, Uttar Pradesh and Chhattisgarh to the west, Orissa to the south, and West Bengal to the east...

 and Nepal
Nepal
Nepal , officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked sovereign state located in South Asia. It is located in the Himalayas and bordered to the north by the People's Republic of China, and to the south, east, and west by the Republic of India...

, where it is known as Dashain. It is celebrated likewise with much fervour in various parts of India, especially the Himalayan region, but is celebrated in various forms throughout the Hindu universe.

The day of Durga's victory is celebrated as Vijayadashami
Vijayadashami
Vijayadashami also known as Dasara, is one of the most important festivals celebrated in various forms, across India, Nepal and Bangladesh...

 (Bihar
Bihar
Bihar is a state in eastern India. It is the 12th largest state in terms of geographical size at and 3rd largest by population. Almost 58% of Biharis are below the age of 25, which is the highest proportion in India....

, Bengali), Dashain (Nepali) or Dussehra (Hindi) - these words literally mean "the Victory Tenth" (day).

In Kashmir she is worshipped as shaarika (the main temple is in Hari Parbat in Srinagar
Srinagar
Srinagar is the summer seasonal capital of Jammu and Kashmir. It is situated in Kashmir Valley and lies on the banks of the Jhelum River, a tributary of the Indus. It is one of the largest cities in India not to have a Hindu majority. The city is famous for its gardens, lakes and houseboats...

).

The actual period of the worship however may be on the preceding nine days (Navaratri) followed by the last day called Vijayadashami in North India or five days in Bengal (from the sixth to tenth day of the waxing-moon fortnight). Nine aspects of Durga known as Navadurga
Navadurga
Navadurga , which literally means nine Goddess Durgas, constitute, according to Hindu mythology, the manifestation of Durga in nine different forms...

 are meditated upon, one by one during the nine-day festival by devout Shakti
Shakti
Shakti from Sanskrit shak - "to be able," meaning sacred force or empowerment, is the primordial cosmic energy and represents the dynamic forces that are thought to move through the entire universe in Hinduism. Shakti is the concept, or personification, of divine feminine creative power, sometimes...

 worshippers. In South India especially Andhra Pradesh Dussera Navaratri is also celebrated and the goddess is dressed each day as a different devi like Sraswati, Parvati, Laksmi etc. for the nine days.

In North India, the tenth day, signifying Rama
Rama
Rama or full name Ramachandra is considered to be the seventh avatar of Vishnu in Hinduism, and a king of Ayodhya in ancient Indian...

's victory in his battle against the demon Ravana
Ravana
' is the primary antagonist character of the Hindu legend, the Ramayana; who is the great king of Lanka. In the classic text, he is mainly depicted negatively, kidnapping Rama's wife Sita, to claim vengeance on Rama and his brother Lakshmana for having cut off the nose of his sister...

, is celebrated as Dussehra
Vijayadashami
Vijayadashami also known as Dasara, is one of the most important festivals celebrated in various forms, across India, Nepal and Bangladesh...

- gigantic straw effigies of Ravana are burnt in designated open spaces (e.g. Delhi
Delhi
Delhi , officially National Capital Territory of Delhi , is the largest metropolis by area and the second-largest by population in India, next to Mumbai. It is the eighth largest metropolis in the world by population with 16,753,265 inhabitants in the Territory at the 2011 Census...

's Ram Lila grounds), watched by thousands of families and little children.

In Mysore Karnataka
Karnataka
Karnataka , the land of the Kannadigas, is a state in South West India. It was created on 1 November 1956, with the passing of the States Reorganisation Act and this day is annually celebrated as Karnataka Rajyotsava...

, she is worshiped as Chamundeshwari, the patron goddess of the city during Dussehra

In Gujarat it is celebrated as the last day of Navaratri, during which the Garba dance
Garba (dance)
Garba is an Indian form of dance that originated in the Gujarat region. The name garba comes from the Sanskrit term Garbha and Deep . Many traditional garbas are performed around a central lit lamp or picture/statues of different avatars of Goddess Shakti...

 is performed to celebrate the vigorous victory of Mahishasura-mardini Durga.

The Goddess Durga is worshipped in her peaceful form as Maha Gauri, The Fair Lady, Shree Shantadurga
Shantadurga
Shantadurga also known as Shanteri/Santeri is the form of the Goddess Durga, commonly worshipped in Goa, India .She is also called Saibini in Konkani as a mark of reverence....

 also known as santeri, is the patron Goddess of Goa. She is worshipped by all Goan Hindus.

In Maharashtra
Maharashtra
Maharashtra is a state located in India. It is the second most populous after Uttar Pradesh and third largest state by area in India...

, Tulja Bhavani and Ambabai is worshipped as Mahishasur Mardini and is patron goddess of land. Bhavani is known as Tulaja, Amba, Renuka, Yamai, Saptshrungi, Jogai in different places of Maharashtra. She is inspirational goddess of Raja shivaji. As per legends, Bhavani revealed to Shivaji and blessed him to form a kingdom.

In Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

 also the four-days long Sharadiya Durga Puja
Durga Puja
Durga puja ; দুর্গা পূজা,ଦୁର୍ଗା ପୂଜା,‘Worship of Durga’), also referred to as Durgotsava ; , is an annual Hindu festival in South Asia that celebrates worship of the Hindu goddess Durga. It refers to all the six days observed as Mahalaya, Shashthi, Maha Saptami, Maha Ashtami, Maha Navami and...

 (Bengali: শারদীয়া দুর্গা পুজো , ‘autumnal Durga worship’) is the biggest religious festivals for the Hindus and celebrated across the country with Vijayadashami being a national holiday.

Mahishasuramardini Stotra


Mahishasuramardini Stotra

ayi girina.ndini na.nditamedini vishvavinodini na.ndanute

girivara vi.ndhya shirodhinivaasini vishhNuvilaasini jishhNunute

bhagavati he shitikaNThakuTuMbini bhuuri kuTuMbini bhuuri kRite

jaya jaya he mahishhaasuramardini ramyakapardini shailasute


O daughter of the mountain, who makes the whole earth happy, who makes the whole universe rejoice, praised by Nandin
dwelling on the peak of the great Vindhya mountain, glittering widely, praised by those desirous of victory
O Goddess, wife of the blue necked Siva, One who has many families, One who has done a lot,
be victorious, be victorious, O destroyer of the demon mahisa, with beautiful braids of hair, daughter of the mountain Himalaya

suravaravarshhiNi durdharadharshhiNi durmukhamarshhiNi harshharate

tribhuvanaposhhiNi sha.nkaratoshhiNi kilbishhamoshhiNi ghoshharate

danuja niroshhiNi ditisuta roshhiNi durmada shoshhiNi sindhusute

jaya jaya he mahishhaasuramardini ramyakapardini shailasute


O bestower of boons on Gods, One who assails those hard to control, who tolerates those with ugly faces (?), one engrossed in rejoicing
One who nourishes the three worlds, One who pleases sankara, One who removes sins, One who engrosses in sound of Om (?)
One who is angry with the progeny of Danu (demon), One who is angry with the sons of Diti (also demon), One who destroys those with evil intoxication of pride, daughter of the ocean

Notable temples in India, Bangladesh and Indonesia


  • Durgamba Temple, Haigunda, Uttara Kannada District, Karnataka
    Karnataka
    Karnataka , the land of the Kannadigas, is a state in South West India. It was created on 1 November 1956, with the passing of the States Reorganisation Act and this day is annually celebrated as Karnataka Rajyotsava...

    , India
    India
    India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

     - Temple dates back to more than 2000 years
  • Ambabai Temple, Kolhapur, Maharashtra, India.
  • Official Website of Kanaka Durgamma Temple
  • Ammathiruvadi Temple
    Ammathiruvadi Temple
    Ammathiruvadi Temple is located about 12 km away from Thrissur town in Kerala state, south India, in the village of Ūrakam. It is regarded as one of the great 108 Durga temples.-Folklore:...

    , Thrissur
    Thrissur
    This article is about the city in India. For the district, see Thrissur district. For the urban agglomeration area of Thrissur see Thrissur Metropolitan Area...

    , Kerala
    Kerala
    or Keralam is an Indian state located on the Malabar coast of south-west India. It was created on 1 November 1956 by the States Reorganisation Act by combining various Malayalam speaking regions....

    , India
    India
    India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

  • Matrimandir
    Matrimandir
    The Matrimandir is an edifice of spiritual significance for practitioners of Integral yoga, situated at the center of Auroville initiated by The Mother of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram. It is called soul of the city and is situated in a large open space called Peace...

     in the city of Auroville near Pondicherry
  • Maa Bamleshwari temple at dongargarh, Chattisgaarh.
  • Ambika Mata Temple
    Ambika Mata Temple
    Ambika Mata Mandir is a Hindu temple located in the village of Jagat, about 50 km southeast of Udaipur in the state of Rajasthan, India. Ambika Devi, a form of Goddess Durga is the presiding deity of the temple. The temple, located in a cleft of rock possesses a number of inscriptions. The...

     in the village of Jagat
    Jagat
    Jagat is a village development committee in Lamjung District in the Gandaki Zone of northern-central NepalThe Durga temple, Ambika Mata Temple, is in a village by the same name in Udaipur district in Rajasthan, India....

     near Mount Abu in Rajasthan
    Rajasthan
    Rājasthān the land of Rajasthanis, , is the largest state of the Republic of India by area. It is located in the northwest of India. It encompasses most of the area of the large, inhospitable Great Indian Desert , which has an edge paralleling the Sutlej-Indus river valley along its border with...

    , India
    India
    India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

    .
  • Ambaji Temple in Banaskatha district near Gujarat and Rajasthan
    Rajasthan
    Rājasthān the land of Rajasthanis, , is the largest state of the Republic of India by area. It is located in the northwest of India. It encompasses most of the area of the large, inhospitable Great Indian Desert , which has an edge paralleling the Sutlej-Indus river valley along its border with...

    , India
    India
    India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

  • Kulanjari Mata Temple in the village of Mau Chirayal
    Mau Chirayal
    HistoryThe name Mau Chirayal is mixture of two names one is Mau and second is Chirayal and Mau mean to "main hun" a popular saying in Brij area of India it proudly mean "I am here" due to this entire vicinity belong to Rajput clan of Pundhir’s and this village is belong to royal Pundhir Rajput...

    , village of Pundhir near Aligarh in Uttar Pradesh
    Uttar Pradesh
    Uttar Pradesh abbreviation U.P. , is a state located in the northern part of India. With a population of over 200 million people, it is India's most populous state, as well as the world's most populous sub-national entity...

    , India
    India
    India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

    .
  • Bhairabi Devalaya
    Bhairabi Temple
    The Bhairabi Temple is located on the outskirts Tezpur in Assam, India.The Goddess Durga is worshipped here. The backdrop of the temple is a view looking towards the Kolia Bhomora Setu across the Brahmaputra River. The temple site is also locally known as Maithan and Bhairabi Devalaya...

    , in Tezpur
    Tezpur
    Tezpur is a city and the administrative headquarters and municipal board of Sonitpur district in the state of Assam in northeastern India. Tezpur is an ancient city on the banks of the river Brahmaputra and is the largest of the north bank towns with a population exceeding 100,000...

    , Assam
    Assam
    Assam , also, rarely, Assam Valley and formerly the Assam Province , is a northeastern state of India and is one of the most culturally and geographically distinct regions of the country...

  • Kalighat
    Kalighat
    Kalighat is a locality of Kolkata, India. One of the oldest neighborhoods in South Kolkata, Kalighat is also densely populated and vibrant -- with a rich history of cultural intermingling with the various foreign incursions into the area over time....

     Temple, Kolkata
    Kolkata
    Kolkata , formerly known as Calcutta, is the capital of the Indian state of West Bengal. Located on the east bank of the Hooghly River, it was the commercial capital of East India...

    .
  • Tripureswari/Tripura Sundari Temple

  • Udaipur
    Udaipur, Tripura
    Udaipur is a town and a nagar panchayat in the Indian state of Tripura. This city is famous for the Tripura Sundari temple. It is also the head-quarters of South Tripura district. Udaipur is about 55 km from Agartala, the capital of Tripura.Udaipur is also called as Lake City. There are lots of...

    , Tripura
    Tripura
    Tripura is a state in North-East India, with an area of . It is the third smallest state of India, according to area. Tripura is surrounded by Bangladesh on the north, south, and west. The Indian states of Assam and Mizoram lie to the east. The capital is Agartala and the main languages spoken are...

  • Kateel
    Kateel
    Kateel or Kateelu is a temple town in the Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka, India. It is about 29 kilometers away from Mangaluru and is considered one of the holiest temple towns in Hinduism...

     Durgaparameshwari temple, in Mangalore, Karnataka
  • Kalka Mandir
    Kalka Mandir, Delhi
    Kalka Mandir also known as Kalkaji Temple is a famous Hindu mandir, dedicated to Hindu Goddess Kali, situated in the Delhi, India, near Okhla The name has also lend itself to nearby locality of Kalkaji, opposite Nehru Place business centre A km away from the temple, on a hill in the East of...

    , near Nehru Place
    Nehru Place
    Nehru Place is a large commercial, financial, and business center in Delhi, India. Though its importance as a financial center has declined in recent years, Nehru Place is still a prominent commercial area in South Delhi and houses the headquarters of several Indian firms and rivals with other...

    , New Delhi
    New Delhi
    New Delhi is the capital city of India. It serves as the centre of the Government of India and the Government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi. New Delhi is situated within the metropolis of Delhi. It is one of the nine districts of Delhi Union Territory. The total area of the city is...

    .
  • Kamakhya Temple
    Kamakhya Temple
    The Kamakhya Temple is a Shakti Peeth temple situated on the Nilachal Hill in western part of Guwahati city in Assam, India. It is the main temple in a complex of individual temples dedicated to different forms of the mother goddess as the Dasa Mahavidya, including Bhuvaneshvari, Bagalamukhi,...

    , Guwahati
    Guwahati
    Guwahati, Pragjyotishpura in ancient Assam formerly known as Gauhati is a metropolis,the largest city of Assam in India and ancient urban area in North East India, with a population of 963,429. It is also the largest metropolitan area in north-eastern India...

    , Assam
    Assam
    Assam , also, rarely, Assam Valley and formerly the Assam Province , is a northeastern state of India and is one of the most culturally and geographically distinct regions of the country...

  • Biraja Temple
    Biraja Temple
    Viraja Temple or Viraja Kshetra , or Oddyana Peetha, , is one of the ancient Hindu temples located in the Jajpur district of Orissa, India. This present temple was built in 13th century. It is situated in the Jajpur township which is nearly 125 KM north from Bhubaneswar...

    , Jajpur, Orissa
    Orissa
    Orissa , officially Odisha since Nov 2011, is a state of India, located on the east coast of India, by the Bay of Bengal. It is the modern name of the ancient nation of Kalinga, which was invaded by the Maurya Emperor Ashoka in 261 BC. The modern state of Orissa was established on 1 April...

  • Katak Chandi Temple
    Katak Chandi Temple
    The Katak Chandi Temple is an ancient temple dedicated to the Goddess Chandi, the presiding deity of Cuttack, Orissa. The temple is located near the banks of the River Mahanadi. It is famous for the annual Durga Puja and Kali Puja festivals. The Durga Puja festivities are prominent in Maa Katak...

    , Cuttack
    Cuttack
    Cuttack is the former capital of the state of Orissa, India. It is the headquarters of Cuttack district and is located about 20 km to the north east of Bhubaneswar, the capital of Orissa. The name of the city is an anglicised form of Kataka that literally means The Fort, a reference to the...

    , Orissa
    Orissa
    Orissa , officially Odisha since Nov 2011, is a state of India, located on the east coast of India, by the Bay of Bengal. It is the modern name of the ancient nation of Kalinga, which was invaded by the Maurya Emperor Ashoka in 261 BC. The modern state of Orissa was established on 1 April...

  • Kanaka Durga Temple
    Kanaka Durga Temple
    Kanaka Durga Temple is a famous Hindu Temple of Goddess Kanaka Durga located in Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh. The temple is located on the Indrakeeladri hill, on the banks of Krishna River....

    , Vijayawada
    Vijayawada
    Vijayawada is the third largest city in Andhra Pradesh, India, located on the banks of the Krishna River and bounded by the Indrakiladri Hills on the West and the Budameru River on the North. The city is located in the Krishna District, about from the state capital Hyderabad.Vijayawada literally...

    , Andhra Pradesh
    Andhra Pradesh
    Andhra Pradesh , is one of the 28 states of India, situated on the southeastern coast of India. It is India's fourth largest state by area and fifth largest by population. Its capital and largest city by population is Hyderabad.The total GDP of Andhra Pradesh is $100 billion and is ranked third...

  • Mahamaya Ratanpur Temple in Bilaspur, Chhattisgarh
  • Shanta Durga temple
    Shanta Durga temple
    Shantadurga Temple is a large temple complex from Panaji at the foothill of Kavalem village in Ponda Taluka, Goa, India.-Deity:The temple is dedicated to Shantadurga, the goddess who mediates between Vishnu and Shiva...

     in Goa
    Goa
    Goa , a former Portuguese colony, is India's smallest state by area and the fourth smallest by population. Located in South West India in the region known as the Konkan, it is bounded by the state of Maharashtra to the north, and by Karnataka to the east and south, while the Arabian Sea forms its...

  • Shila Devi
    Shila Devi
    Shila Devi is the famous idol of Durga. Her temple is located in Amber Fort. The idol was brought by Raja Man Singh I of Amber from Jessore, now in Bangladesh. On the sixth day of winter Navratris, special prayers are offered to this goddess. Lakhs of people from Jaipur and surrounding areas come...

     temple at Amber
    Amber
    Amber is fossilized tree resin , which has been appreciated for its color and natural beauty since Neolithic times. Amber is used as an ingredient in perfumes, as a healing agent in folk medicine, and as jewelry. There are five classes of amber, defined on the basis of their chemical constituents...

     Jaipur
    Jaipur
    Jaipur , also popularly known as the Pink City, is the capital and largest city of the Indian state of Rajasthan. Founded on 18 November 1727 by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II, the ruler of Amber, the city today has a population of more than 3.1 million....

     Rajasthan
  • Shitla Mata
    Shitla Mata
    The Shitla Mata Mandir is situated at Patna City, Patna, Bihar. This is very good place for worship of Mata Durga. This is known as "SHAKTI PEETH" of Maa Durga....

     temple at Patna
    Patna
    Paṭnā , is the capital of the Indian state of Bihar and the second largest city in Eastern India . Patna is one of the oldest continuously inhabited places in the world...

     Bihar
    Bihar
    Bihar is a state in eastern India. It is the 12th largest state in terms of geographical size at and 3rd largest by population. Almost 58% of Biharis are below the age of 25, which is the highest proportion in India....

  • Vindhyachal
    Vindhyachal
    Vindhyachal is a town in Mirzapur District of Uttar Pradesh state in northern India. The city is a Hindu pilgrimage site having the temple of Vindhyavasini, where according to mythology a part of Sati Born in Nand Yadav Family as sister of Lord Krishna. The river Ganges flows through this city...

     temple near Varanasi
    Varanasi
    -Etymology:The name Varanasi has its origin possibly from the names of the two rivers Varuna and Assi, for the old city lies in the north shores of the Ganga bounded by its two tributaries, the Varuna and the Asi, with the Ganges being to its south...

  • Vaishno Devi
    Vaishno Devi
    Vaishno Devi Mandir is one of the holy Hindu temples dedicated to Shakti, located in the hills of Vaishno Devi, Jammu and Kashmir, India. In Hinduism, Vaishno Devi, also known as Mata Rani and Vaishnavi, is a manifestation of the Mother Goddess.The temple is near the town of Katra, in the Reasi...

     temple in Jammu & Kasmir
  • Chamundeshwari Temple, Mysore Karnataka
    Karnataka
    Karnataka , the land of the Kannadigas, is a state in South West India. It was created on 1 November 1956, with the passing of the States Reorganisation Act and this day is annually celebrated as Karnataka Rajyotsava...

  • Prambanan
    Prambanan
    Prambanan is a ninth century Hindu temple compound in Central Java, Indonesia, dedicated to the Trimurti, the expression of God as the Creator , the Sustainer and the Destroyer...

     Temple – Indonesia
  • Tulja Bhavani Temple
    Tulja Bhavani Temple
    Tulja Bhavani Temple is a Hindu temple of Goddess Bhavani. It is located in Tuljapur in Osmanabad district of Maharashtra is considered as one of the 51 Shakti Pithas. It is situated 45  km from Solapur....

     - in Tuljapur
    Tuljapur
    Tuljapur is a city and a municipal council in Osmanabad district in the Indian state of Maharashtra. It is the administrative seat of Tuljapur taluka.The town is home to a famous temple, Tulja Bhavani Temple, dedicated to the Hindu goddess Bhavani...

    , Maharashtra
    Maharashtra
    Maharashtra is a state located in India. It is the second most populous after Uttar Pradesh and third largest state by area in India...

    , India
  • Amaramkavu Devi Temple, in Kolani, near Thodupuzha, Kerala, India
  • Chamunda devi temple in Brasil
  • Vaishno Devi mandir in Katra(Jammu)
  • Bappanadu Sri Durga Parameshwari temple, in Mulki, Manglore, Karnataka
  • Dhakeshwari Temple
    Dhakeshwari Temple
    Dhakeshwari National Temple is a famous Hindu temple in Dhaka, Bangladesh and is state-owned, giving it the distinction of Bangladesh's "National Temple". The name "Dhakeshwari" means "Goddess of Dhaka". The temple is located southwest of the Salimullah Hall of Dhaka University...

     in Dhaka
    Dhaka
    Dhaka is the capital of Bangladesh and the principal city of Dhaka Division. Dhaka is a megacity and one of the major cities of South Asia. Located on the banks of the Buriganga River, Dhaka, along with its metropolitan area, had a population of over 15 million in 2010, making it the largest city...

    , Bangladesh
    Bangladesh
    Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

  • Bhagavathy Temple in Pathiyoor, Kayamkulam, Alappuzha, Kerala,India

See also


  • Shaktism
    Shaktism
    Shaktism is a denomination of Hinduism that focuses worship upon Shakti or Devi – the Hindu Divine Mother – as the absolute, ultimate Godhead...

  • Durga Puja
    Durga Puja
    Durga puja ; দুর্গা পূজা,ଦୁର୍ଗା ପୂଜା,‘Worship of Durga’), also referred to as Durgotsava ; , is an annual Hindu festival in South Asia that celebrates worship of the Hindu goddess Durga. It refers to all the six days observed as Mahalaya, Shashthi, Maha Saptami, Maha Ashtami, Maha Navami and...

  • Hindu Goddess
  • List of women warriors in folklore
  • Mahavidya
    Mahavidya
    Mahavidyas or DashaMahavidyas are a group of ten aspects of the Divine Mother or Devi in Hinduism. The Ten Mahavidyas are Wisdom Goddesses, who represent a spectrum of feminine divinity, from horrific goddesses at one end, to the ravishingly beautiful at the other.The development of Mahvidyas...

  • Mahisasuramardini (radio programme)
  • Woman warrior
    Woman warrior
    The portrayal of women warriors in literature and popular culture is a subject of study in history, literary studies, film studies, folklore and mythology, gender studies, and cultural studies.-Archaeology:...


Further reading

  • Durga Puja: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow, Sudeshna Banerjee, Rupa and Co, Calcutta, 2004. (ISBN 81-291-0547-0)
  • Hindu Goddesses: Vision of the Divine Feminine in the Hindu Religious Traditions, David Kinsley. (ISBN 81-208-0379-5)
  • Mother Goddess Durga, Pranab Bandyopadhyay, United Writers, Calcutta 1993 ISBN 81-85328-13-7
  • Grace and Mercy in Her Wild Hair : Selected Poems to the Mother Goddess, Ramprasad Sen
    Ramprasad Sen
    ' was a Shakta poet of eighteenth century Bengal. His bhakti poems, known as Ramprasadi, are still popular in Bengal—they are usually addressed to the Hindu goddess Kali and written in Bengali...

     (1720–1781). (ISBN 0-934252-94-7)
  • Durga Puja Beginner, Swami Satyananda Saraswati, Devi Mandir, 2001. (ISBN 1-887472-89-4)
  • "Chandi Path", Swami Satyananda Saraswati, Devi Mandir (ISBN 1-877795-52-6)
  • "Chandi Path: Study of Chapter One", Swami Satyananda Saraswati, Devi Mandir (ISBN 1-877795-58-5)
  • "Chandi Path: Study of Chapter Two", Swami Satyananda Saraswati, Devi Mandir (ISBN 1-877795-60-7)
  • Offering Flowers, Feeding Skulls: Popular Goddess Worship in West Bengal, June McDaniel, Oxford University Press, 2004. (ISBN 0-19-516791-0)
  • "Pronunciation and the Chandi Samputs", Swami Satyananda Saraswati, Devi Mandir (ISBN 1-877795-61-5)
  • "Devi Gita", Swami Satyananda Saraswati
    Swami Satyananda Saraswati
    Swami Satyananda Saraswati , was a sannyasin, yoga teacher and guru in both his native India and the West. He founded the International Yoga Fellowship in 1956 and the Bihar School of Yoga in 1963...

    , Devi Mandir (ISBN 1-877795-56-9)
  • The Bond Between Women: A Journey to Fierce Compassion, China Galland, Riverhead Trade Publishing, U.S., 1999.
  • Mahishasura Mardini Stotram (Prayer to the Goddess who killed Mahishasura), Sri Sri Sri Shankara Bhagavatpadacharya

External links