Posted in

In my school days, Navaratri for me was, days when there is no need of reading books 'officially' at home. On the Vijayadasami day there is ceremony of Ezhuthiniruttu(Vidyarambham) in schools and temples. Vidyarambham is a tradition where kids are formally initiated into the letters of the alphabet. Initiation into the world of alphabets usually begins with the writing of the mantra "Om hari sri ganapataye namah"(ഓം ഹരി ശ്രീ ഗണപതയേ നമഃ) Hari(ഹരി) refers to the Lord, sri(ശ്രീ), to prosperity. The mantra is written on sand or in a tray of rice grains. Then, the master would write the mantra on the child's tongue with gold.

Navaratri is a festival that lasts nine days and nine nights. The word "Navaratri" actually means nine (Nava) nights (ratri). This is celebrated in different styles throughout India.

Navaratri is the worship of the three divine goddesses, Saraswati (Goddess of learning and speech), Lakshmi (Goddess of wealth and prosperity), and Durga (Goddess of strength and courage). It is also said to be the battle that occurred between Goddess Chaamundeshwari and the asura (demon), Mahishaasura. The battle lasted 9 days and 9 nights. Finally, on the tenth day, Goddess Chaamundeshwari killed Mahishaasura. This day is known as Vijayadasami. Vijayadasami means the 10th day of victory.