First Day of Navratri 2023: Date, Time and The Hindu Rituals
The colourful 9-day festival is around the corner and we surely can’t keep calm! Let’s shed light on what Navratri’s first day is all about. Day 1 belongs to Maa Durga’s Shailputri avatar, the goddess who has her name derived from the combination of two words, mountain (Shail) and daughter (Putri). On the very first day of navratri, people keep their worries aside and prepare themselves for Goddess Shailputri Puja. Besides, people also offer prayers to the Lord Ganesha who is the remover of hurdles.
In Astrology, it is believed that the Goddess Shailputri controls the planet Moon. By chanting Adi Shakti mantras, one can overcome the bad effects of the Moon. Moreover, it also helps to maintain a healthy life. During this festival, people step out of the house in colorful and traditional dresses to enjoy Garba (Gujarati folk dance). As per Hindu rituals, Ghatasthapana is also considered as one of the significant rituals as it invokes the Goddess to take place inside a sacred pot. Let’s see the important date and timings to perform Puja rituals on this auspicious day.
The Story of Maa Shailputri belongs to her previous birth when a King named Daksha Prajapati was blessed with a girl child. He gave her the name Devi Sati. As per myths, Daksha Prajapati never wanted Sati to marry Lord Shiva. Once he organized a yagna for all deities and deliberately didn’t invite Lord Shiva. When Sati came to know about the Yagna, she appeared as an uninvited guest. She was extremely disappointed when her father insulted Lord Shiva and decided to jump into the fire of yagna, where she immolated herself. In her next birth, she was born as a daughter of the Himalayas and came to be known as ‘Shailputri’. Goddess Shailputri is an avatar of goddess Durga incarnated from the Himalayas mountain and is worshipped on the first day of Navratri. Maa Shailputri’s idol is depicted as a Goddess sitting on a bull with a flower in her left hand and a trident in her right hand. According to Hindu mythology, she possesses the divine powers of the trinity, Lord Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh.
Ghatasthapana, also known as ‘kalash sthapana’ is performed on the first day of Navratri to seek divine blessings from Maa Durga. In fact, the pot is worshipped for the remaining days of navratri in the right Muhurta. Ghatasthapana is performed during the daytime as it cannot be done during the night time or Amavasya. Ghatasthapana can also be done in the Abhijit Muhurat.
- A pitcher and coconut
- Grain seeds
- Ganga Jal
- Sacred thread and betel nut
- Mango tree leaves or Asoka leaves
- Durva grass
Ghatasthapana Puja Vidhi:
During Ghatasthapana Puja devotees offer items like fresh flowers, prasad, and sacred water along with chanting powerful mantras. Given below are some Puja rituals followed at the time of Ghatasthapana:
- Put the soil inside the clay pot and then spread the grain seeds.
- Now, add another layer of soil and grain seeds at the upper part of the pot.
- Allow the soil to set by adding some water.
- In the next step, put water inside the pot till it is completely filled up.
- Take a pitcher and tie a sacred thread (Kalaya) on the outer side of it.
- Put Supari including Durva grass and coins into the water-filled pot.
- Keep some leaves on the edge of the pitcher and close the lid.
- Now tie a red cloth around the coconut before placing it inside the pitcher.
- After completing the above steps, place a pitcher in the middle of the pot.
- Perform Ghatasthapana puja by offering prayers till the remaining days of Navratri.
Mantras and Stuti:
By chanting the below mantras of Maa Shailputri, one can fulfill their desire to attain peace in their life.
- Maa Shailputri mantra:
वंदे वाद्द्रिछतलाभाय चंद्रार्धकृतशेखराम |
वृषारूढां शूलधरां शैलपुत्री यशस्विनीम् ||
- Mantra: ॐ देवी शैलपुत्र्यै नमः॥
- Stuti: या देवी सर्वभूतेषु माँ शैलपुत्री रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नामो नम:॥