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"Durga puja: (puja is worship in Sanskrit) is widely celebrated all over India and especially in the eastern part of India in the State of West Bengal. This is a hugely major festival of the Bengalis who reside in the State of West Bengal and speak the Bengali language. Bengali is a very beautiful and a musical language. Many of the well known freedom fighters who fought for the independence of India from the British were from the State of West Bengal. The Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore who gave India its National Anthem hailed from this State.

"Durga puja" is preceded by a period known as the "Mahalaya" or "Pitru Paksh". "Pitru" means forefathers and "Paksh" means fortnight or period. Literally this means the "Fortnight of the Ancestors" and occurs during the Hindu lunar month of Bhadrapada or September - October. Technically "Mahalaya" begins on the day after the full moon in September and ends on the following new moon day. It is believed that during this fortnight the ancestors descend on earth to check into the well being of their dear ones and are offered food and water and thereupon they return to their heavenly abode.

Goddess Durga is credited of having annihilated the mighty demon "Mahishasura" and "Durga puja" is a celebration of the victory of the divine Mother over the wicked demon. She is invited to the earth by the chanting of mantras (prayers) and her coming over is celebrated over a period of nine days - known as the "Navaratris" or nine nights. On the first three days she is worshipped as "Durga" - the annihilator of evil, on the next three days she is worshipped as "Lakshmi" - the Goddess of wealth and on the last three days she is worshipped as "Saraswathi" - the Goddess of knowledge. However the last five days are celebrated with great pomp and pageantry i.e... Shashti, Maha Saptami, Maha Ashtami, Maha Navami and Vijayadasami. On the tenth day i.e. on the day of Vijayadasami She is ceremoniously taken out in procession and immersed in the river or the sea.

May Goddess Durga bless you all with unlimited joy, unlimited, happiness, unlimited prosperity, unlimited good health and unlimited success.

Enjoy the pictures.

Shankar Adisesh

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Category:Lifestyle and Recreation
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Keywords:Navratri, Durga, Durgapuja, Festivalsofindia, Goddessdurga, Mahalaya, Mahishasura