Navrātri – Day 8

The penultimate day.

Yesterday’s Nirjala Vrata was easier than today’s fast. Once you have a fruit, the body realizes that it the option is still open:))

Jokes apart, this Navrātri has been easier…maybe because of experience and maybe because of the yog. I have found the sweet spot (I think) of how much to eat on a daily basis. Will try to build a sustainable diet from here.

Today was also Āyudha Puja, which is very widely celebrated in the South of India, where I am from. Etymology – the puja of astra and shastra, i.e. weapons, which in today’s day, we hope that you don’t have to carry. It has since been replaced with the puja of everything that helps us in our studies and work – books, vehicles, computers, phones and the like.

Must be the only culture in the world that worships a car – but that is the beauty of it. The car is the medium – that it helps you get from one place to another safely is the factor that is worshipped. Same goes for the computer – we worship the fact that it helps us with our work and in some cases is instrumental in us earning our livelihood.

And so as I trudged into the parking, Aarti thali in hand, agarbattis lit, I half-wondered if someone would call Civil Defence, thinking that I was out to commit arson. So many cultures reside here that it can be confusing for someone who isn’t familiar with the customs of others. It is also an opportunity to learn about how other cultures go about their lives and celebrations, in a way.

Anyways, the day passed well, with tomorrow being the final day of the fast, and the culmination of the celebrations…of course until the next big one (the biggest) – Diwali!

Seeing Chanda and Munda vanquished, the remaining asura army panicked and fled in all directions. And Kāli, holding the heads of Chanda and Munda in her hands, approached Chandika and said, “In this sacrifice of battle, here I have brought you the heads of Chanda and Munda.”

Read the next in the Devi Mahātmayam series – the Terror of Raktabija

द्विः शरं नाभिसन्धत्ते द्विः स्थापयति नाश्रितान् ।

द्विर्ददाति न चार्थिभ्यो, रामो द्विर्नाभिभाषते ॥

Rāma doesn’t aim twice, he doesn’t give refuge twice, Rāma does not give twice to a seeker, he doesn’t speak the same thing twice.