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Durga Ashtami 2019: Why Pushpanjali Puja is held, and how it is performed

Pushpanjali Puja is performed on all nine days of Durga Puja but performing it on Durga Ashtami has a special significance.

India TV Lifestyle Desk India TV Lifestyle Desk
New Delhi Updated on: October 06, 2019 8:48 IST
Durga Ashtami 2019: Pushpanjali Puja- Know everything about the beautiful tradition

 Durga Ashtami 2019: Pushpanjali Puja- Know everything about the beautiful tradition

One of the most important and fun festivals of India, Navratri is counted amongst the most important festivals of Hindus. With it comes the Durga Puja celebrations, dandiya nights and garba games. Pandals showcasing idols of Maa Durga are set up, as they welcome devotees in large numbers to offer prayers to the Goddess. The eighth day of Navratri known as Ashtami, or Durga Ashtami is the most important day and this year it will fall on October 6. The day is important as the Bengalis perform Pushpanjali Puja and aarti on this day.

Pushpanjali, as the name suggests, is made up of two words -- flowers and offering. Pushpanjali Puja is performed on all nine days of Durga Puja but performing it on Durga Ashtami has a special significance. Bengalis make sure that they do not miss this ritual. 

Not only this, there are devotees who finish off their fast after Pushpanjali Puja. They eat the "Bhog" after that.

India Tv - Durga Ashtami 2019: Pushpanjali Puja- Know everything about the beautiful tradition

Durga Ashtami 2019: Pushpanjali Puja- Know everything about the beautiful tradition

Ashtami is celebrated with much fervour and few people even observe Kumari Puja on the day. The evening of the auspicious day holds a special significance as Sandhi Puja takes place when Ashtami ends and Navami begins. 

During this time, it is believed that Goddess Durga's avatar 'Devi Chamunda' appears to slay demons -- Chanda and Munda. People believe that the Goddess opens her third eye and showers her devotees with her blessings.

During Pushpanjali Puja, Bengali Brahmins chant the Pushpanjali mantras during which the devotees are asked to repeat them. During this puja, fresh flowers and bel patra are offered at the feet of Goddess Durga. This puja is repeated three times continuously along with three separate Pushpanjali mantra(s).

India Tv - Durga Ashtami 2019: Pushpanjali Puja- Know everything about the beautiful tradition

Durga Ashtami 2019: Pushpanjali Puja- Know everything about the beautiful tradition

Here are the three Pushpanjali mantras that are enchanted:

1- Om Jayanti, Mangala, Kali, Bhadrakali, Kapalini।

Durga, Shiva, Kshama, Dhatri, Svaha, Svadha Namostu Te॥
Esha Sachandana Gandha Pushpa Bilva Patranjali Om Hreem Durgayai Namah॥

2- Om Mahishaghni Mahamaye Chamunde Mundamalini।
Ayurarogyavijayam Dehi Devi Namostu Te॥
Esha Sachandana Gandha Pushpa Bilva Patranjali Om Hreem Durgayai Namah॥

3- Om Sarva Mangala Mangalye Shive Sarvartha Sadhike।
Sharanye Tryambake Gauri Narayani Namostu Te॥1॥

Srishti Sthiti Vinashanam, Shaktibhute, Sanatani।
Gunashraye, Gunamaye, Narayani, Namostu Te॥2॥

Sharanagata Dinarta Paritrana Parayane।
Sarvasyartihare Devi! Narayani! Namostu Te॥3॥

As per Bengali tradition, no one should step on the flowers -- doing that can bring bad luck.

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