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Goddess Aparna

Goddess Aparna is another name of Goddess Parvati. Parna means leaf and Aparna means not even leaf and Goddess Parvati got the name when she even forsook leaves during her intense austerity to get Shiva as her husband. Thereafter, Ma Parvathi was named Aparna, or the one who did not eat even leaves.

Goddess Parvathi as Goddess Aparna is worshipped by those devotees who undertake fasting. It is said that Goddess Aparna helps devotees to overcome hunger and complete the fast in the appropriate way.

Aparna is also associated with Goddess Annapurneswari or Annapoorna. Thus she is also referred as the food that is consumed during Navratri fasting.

Yet another symbolism associated with Goddess Aparna is that she is a creeper without leaves. Goddess Parvati as Aparna is entwined to Shiva – this symbolism is found in the Anandalahari of Adi Shankaracharya.

Lord Shiva by Himself is austere, clad in next to nothing, and presents an appearance that he has no wealth or gifts to bestow on devotees. But the auspicious Goddess by her union with Him makes Him also yield manifold blessings for devotees, leading them finally to salvation, self realization and eternal bliss. Shankaracharya, therefore, considers that the Goddess is supreme and is worthy of being worshipped. The leafless creeper, therefore, in the lithe and beautiful form of the Goddess is far superior to the apparently attractive leafy creepers which many seek.

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