Nine Goddesses of Navratri are collectively known as Navadurga and are mentioned in the Devi Mahatmya and Durga Saptashati. The Nine Goddesses worshipped on each of the nine days of Navaratri are incarnations of Goddess Shakti. The nine goddess worshipped are Shailaputri, Brahmacharini, Chandraghanta, Kushmanda, Skanda Mata, Katyayani, Kala Ratri (Kaalratri), Maha Gowri and Siddhidayini.
Maa Shailaputri – Goddess Worshipped on the first day of Navratri
‘Shail’ means mountains and ‘Putri’ means daughter. She is also known as Parvati or Hemavati
Shailaputri is believed to be the rebirth of Sati, the daughter of Daksha and the wife of Lord Shiva. In her second birth she is Parvati, the daughter of
Himalaya and later she became the consort of Shiva. This is one of the very first forms of Shakti and is closely associated with Lord Shiva.
Maa Brahmacharini – Goddess Worshipped on the second day of Navratri
Here Brahma means ‘one who constantly meditates on the Supreme Being’. Brahmacharini is highly pious and is a peaceful form or is in meditation. She is also known as Tapashcharini, Aparna and Uma.
This form of Durga is related to the severe penance undertaken by Sati and Parvati in their respective births to attain Lord Shiva as husband. Some of the most important Vratas observed in different parts of
by women is based on the strict austerities followed by Brahmacharini. India
Maa Chandraghanta – Goddess Worshipped on the third day of Navratri
Her name Chandraghanta comes from the crescent moon worn by her on the head.
This is a terrible aspect of Goddess Shakti and is roaring in anger. This form of Durga is completely different from earlier forms and shows when provoked she can be the terrible or malevolent.
Maa Kushmanda – Goddess Worshipped on the fourth day of Navratri
The name Kushmanda consists of three words. ‘Ku’ means ‘a little’, ‘Usma’ means ‘energy’ and ‘Anda’ means ‘the cosmic egg or universe.’ She is also known as Ashtabhuja.
Goddess Shakti is very happy in this incarnation and it is believed that the eternal darkness ended when she smiled. And this led to the beginning of creation.
Maa Skanda Mata – Goddess Worshipped on the fifth day of Navratri
Skanda is one of the names of Subrahmanya or Lord Muruga or Kartik – the General of the Army of the Devas and the most handsome God. Skanda Mata is the mother of Kartik. She is also known as Padmasana.
This the motherly form of Durga and she is benevolent.
Maa Katyayani – Goddess Worshipped on the sixth day of Navratri
She is called Katyayani because she was born as the daughter of Sage Katya of Katya clan.
This is the daughter form of Durga. Here is she a loving daughter. She is epitome of love but won’t hesitate to rise up in anger to defend righteousness and Dharma.
Maa Kalaratri – Goddess Worshipped on the seventh day of Navratri
Kalaratri is the one who destroys ignorance and removes darkness. She is also known as Shubhamkari.
In this form she is believed to have licked the blood of demon Rakta Beeja who had the capacity to bring out thousand demons from a drop of blood spilt from his body.
This is the most violent form of Durga. This form primarily depicts that life also has dark side – the violent Mother Nature and creates havoc and removes all dirt.
Maa Mahagauri – Goddess Worshipped on the eighth day of Navratri
Mahagauri means one clean and bright like a ray of lightning.
This is the form of Mata Parvati when she did penance to get Shiva as her husband. It is believed that due to the intense Tapas performed by her without moving caused soil and dust to collect on her body. Lord Shiva cleaned her with water from
Ganga. Purity is depicted in this form of Durga.
Maa Siddhidatri – Goddess Worshipped on the ninth day of Navratri
In this form Mother Goddess provides ‘Siddhi’ or knowledge.
In this form Durga removes ignorance and she provides the knowledge to realize That or Brahman. She is surrounded by Siddhas, Gandharvas, Yakshas, Demons and Gods who are worshipping her. The Siddhi that she provides is the realization that everything is Supreme Being or Brahman.