Vernal Equinox and Navaratri: Spring is in the air !

We are all finally thawing after a freezing winter and slowly trusting the arrive of the new season! Spring is in the air !

In coincidence with the vernal equinox ( the arrival of Spring,  literally when night and day have equal lenght ) we also have the occurrence of the Hindu festival Navaratri, literally 9 nights , celebrating  Shakti in her manifestations as Durga , Lakhsmi and Saraswati (*).

Ganesh  & goddesses Saraswati
Ganesh Lakhsmi Saraswati

During the calendar year Navaratri is celebrated 4 times, more or less corresponding to the change of the seasons ( equinoxes and solstices). This is a time to profoundly reconnect with the Motherly Energy of the Earth, Shakti, the power lying at the base of the spine and in the very core of the planet. It is a time for reflection, cleansing, meditating , releasing the past and planting new seeds for the future. The festival of Navaratri is closed by a tenth day of music , parades and dancing to acknowledge the victory of Maha Shatki ( the divine feminine energy ).

Chaitra Navratri is celebrated at this time of the year, as the name indicates is observed during the Chaitra month (March – April) in a traditional Hindu calendar followed in North India, on the first day of the waxing phase of moon in Chaitra Month or the day after. in 2010 Chaitra Navaratri 2010 begins on March 16 and ends on March 24. In 2012 Chaitra NAvaratri begins on March 23 and will end on April 1st . In 2013 NAvaratri starts on April 11 and ends on April 19.

Maha Durga
Maha Durga

Here below find Living Practices to tangibly reconnect with Maha Shakti at this time of year.

Chanting of kirtan for the divine mother in the form of Durga-Kali, Sri Lakhsmi and Saraswati.
Chanting with Japa Mala 18-27-54 or 108 rounds of the mantra Aim Hrim Klim Chamundayai Vicche

or mantras for the different aspects of the Goddess:

Om Dum Durgayai Namaha,

Om Shrim Maha Lakshimaye Namaha,

Om Aim Saraswataye Namaha while meditating within your heart upon

Fasting in a way that is appropriate for your system is also traditionally part of Navaratri.

Days 1-3 Purification of Inner and Outer Obstacles on the Spritual Path (Durga Shakti)
Days 4-6  Worshiping the Healing Beauty and Abundance of Maha Lakshmi
Days 7-9  Awakening the Divine Wisdom and Creativity of Saraswati Ma
Day 10 Victory of Shakti

Hope you can find the space and time in your Sadhana to appreciate this transition in divine tune with the Eartly energy.

Namaste’ ALessandra

(*) I offer a “Goddesses” workshop once or twice a year if you are interested in deepening your connection with these aspects of Maha Shakti