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Navratri Festival At Sringeri Sharada Peetham And Sharadamba Temple – Various Alankaras

The annual nine-day Navratri festival (September – October) is celebrated with pomp and gaiety at the Sringeri Sharada Peetham and the Sharadamba Temple dedicated to Goddess Saraswathi.

Mahabhisheka of the golden murti of Sharadamba is performed on the eve of the opening day of the festival. The Maha Abhishekam includes Phala Panchamrutha abhisheka and Shata Rudrabhishekam. On the day, the murti is seen in Jagatprasutika alankara, which represents Goddess Sharadamba fondling a baby.

The utsava murti of Goddess Saraswati is depicted in various forms including Veena Sharada – holding Veena.

On all nine days of Navratri the murti is adorned with jewelry studded with pearls and precious stones including jade and diamonds.

Navratri Alankaras Of Goddess Sharadamba In Sringeri Temple

First day – Hamsa Vahana Alankara – Brahmi – Goddess Sharadamba is depicted as sitting atop Hamsa vahana (swan). She is shown as holding a Kamandala, an Aksha Mala, a Pustaka (book) and Pasha in her hands. Her finger depict the yogic sign, Chinmudra.

Second day – Vrishabha Vahana Alankara – Maheshwari – Adi Shakti, the consort of Maheshwara, is depicted as sitting atop Vrishabha or bull holding a trishul or trident.

Third day – Garuda Vahana Alankara (eagle) – Maheshwari – The Goddess, representing the power of Mahavishnu, is shown sitting astride Garuda, holding a conch, a disc and mace.

Fourth day – Indrani Alankara – Indrani – The Goddess is depicted as holding Vajrayudha, sitting atop Airavata, the divine white elephant.

Fifth day – Veena Sharada Alankara – The Goddess is shown as holding veena in her hands.

Sixth day – Mohini Alankara – The Goddess is depicted as a beautiful woman. She holds the Amrutha Kalasam.

Seventh day – Rajarajeshwari Alankara – She is represented as Goddess Rajarajeshwari

Eighth day – Simha Vahana Alankara – The Goddess is depicted as Chamundi, astride a lion, holding a trident or trishul.

Ninth day – Gajalakshmi Alankara – The Goddess is shown as Gajalakshmi, sitting on a lotus and being saluted by elephants.

A colorful Rathotsava, featuring the ceremonial chariot is held every day evening during the nine-day Navratri festival. The mutt head visits all temples before performing special pujas to Goddess Sharadamba.

After Sri Chandramouleshwara Pooja in the evening, the Jagadguru presides over darbar, a special program held during Navratri. The Jagadguru arrives in a procession wearing a golden crown, studded with precious stones. The murti of Goddess Sharadamba is kept on Vyakhyana Simhasana and brought in a golden chariot. After the Rathotsava inside the temple premises, the Jagadguru occupies his seat on a golden throne, facing the murti of Goddess Sharadamba and begins the rituals.