DUSSEHRA HISTORY: MYTHOLOGY AND STORY BEHIND THIS FESTIVAL

Dussehra is a Hindu festival which is ten days long and celebrated at the end of Navratri every year. This year Dussehra will be celebrated on Friday, October 19, 2018. Dussehra is one of the popular festivals in India and is celebrated by whole Indian with happiness. This festival is celebrated to mark Lord Rama’s victory over the demon Ravana that shows the triumph of good over evil. On Dussehra, people of India burn a huge dummy of Ravana that signifies the quelling of darkness by light. After 20 days of Dussehra, the big festival of India i.e Diwali is celebrated across India with great splendor and it also signifies the return of Lord Rama, Sita and Lakshman to Ayodhya after killing the demon Ravana.

The word Dussehra has its own meaning that signifies the festival very well. The word Dussehra is formed of two small words – Dus and Ahara. “Dus” means ten and “Ahara” means day, so the whole meaning of the word is – the tenth day. On another hand, there is one more meaning of Dusshera, where “Dus” signifies the ten heads of Ravana and “Hara” signifies to defeat or removal. Dusshera is also known by the name Vijayadashami and also signifies the killing of demon Mahishasura by Goddess Durga on the tenth day of Navratri.

 

Dusshera- Story related to Lord Rama

According to Hindu mythology, Ravana was a king of Lanka. He kidnapped Sita (wife of Lord Rama) and took her to his kingdom Lanka and held her in a place named “Ashok Vatika”. Then Lord Rama arrived Lanka with his younger brother Lakshman and Lord Hanuman and with an army of monkeys, with the support of all of them, Lord Rama killed Ravana on the tenth day of battle. So the first 9 days are celebrated as Navratri and on the tenth day, Dusshera is celebrated by Hindus.

 

Vijayadashami- Story related to Goddess Durga

According to another mythology, Goddess Durga killed demon Mahishasura to bring peace on earth. The festival of Navratri is celebrated because here also the battle between the Goddess and the demon Mahishasura ten days. So the festival also celebrates the victory of Goddess Durga on Mahishasura.

People in Northern and Western parts of the India fast while worshipping the nine forms of the Goddess. The eastern and north-eastern parts of India do not fast during Durga Puja as it is a celebratory time for them and they enjoy the festival with much happiness, and on the tenth day, the idol is immersed in water bodies marking the end of festivities.

People of India play dandiya and garba during the nine days of Navratri while praying to the Goddess. Dussehra and Vijayadashami both celebrate the win of good over evil and signify the man’s need to overcome fear, greed and negative thinking and move towards positive thoughts and deeds.

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