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Navratri The 9 Day Battle: Goddess Durga and Mahishasura

Battle of Good Vs Bad

Navratri The 9 Day Battle also known as the battle between the good and bad is a story how an evil demon king named Mahishasura got killed by Goddess Durga (Mahisasura Mardini) because of his egoistic attitude.

Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
“Ya devi sarbabhuteshshu, sakti rupena sanksthita Namasteshwai Namasteshwai Namasteshwai namo namaha.”

Goddess Durga

Goddess Durga meaning “the inaccessible” or “the invincible”, is the most popular incarnation of Devi and one of the main forms of the Goddess Shakti in the Hindu pantheon. Durga is the original manifested form of Mother Adi-Parashakti. Durga is Adi-Parashakti herself.

Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
 

The Devi Gita, declares her to be the greatest Goddess. Thus, she is considered the supreme goddess and primary deity in Shaktism, occupying a place similar to Lord Krishna in Vaishnavism. (From Wikipedia)

Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura

Mahishasura

Mahishasura‘s father Rambha was king of the asuras, and he once fell in love with Princess Mahishi, who was cursed to be a water buffalo; Mahishasura was born out of this union. He is, therefore, able to change between human and buffalo form at will (mahisha is Sanskrit word for buffalo). (From Wikipedia)

 
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
 

Navratri The 9 Day Battle

As per the Hindu mythology, the Mahadeva (The Lord of All Lords) Shiva, granted the boon of immortality to the demon king Mahishasura, after getting pleased with his hard penance and prolonged meditation. Lord Shiva declared that no man, demon, beast or deity would ever be able to kill him. However, Shiva played a trick here and he did not mention the women to the list. 

After receiving the immortality boon from Lord Shiva, Mahishasura started terrifying people in three lokas – Heaven, Hell and Earth. With brutal killings & slayings, he and his army of demons soon conquered the earth, and set their eyes upon Devaloka (Heaven) – the abode of the Devas (gods). Demon Mahishasura defeated the King of Gods – Indra and drove all the gods out of heaven. 

 
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Trimurti- an incarnation(roopa) of Lord Shiva depicting the exquisite balance between the three forces of life creation, preservation and destruction.
 

To overcome their misery, Devas came to the trinity of Supreme Gods – Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva for seeking help. Mahishasura’s violence enraged the trinity to a great extent. Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva and other gods united their powers and brought down a magnificient goddess named Shakti (Power). 

 
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
 

The trinity of goddesses Laxmi, Parvati, Saraswati are believed to be “Shakti” of Vishnu, Shiva and Brahma respectively. Hence Goddess Durga is said to be the merged form of Laxmi, Parvati and Saraswati. The name Durga was given to her after she killed a demon named Durg. 

 
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
 

The 9 Day Battle

Mahishasura, when he saw the divine beauty of Goddess Durga, got mesmerized. Enchanted by her beauty, Mahishasura proposed to marry her. Durga agreed, but on one condition that Mahishasura would have to defeat her in battle. Egoistic Mahishasura did not consider Durga a threat and agreed immediately! 

 
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Durga the goddess of war going head on against her arch-nemesis Mahisha(the minotaur)!
 

The battle continued for 9 days and nights. Mahishasura took different forms to kill Durga, but each of his attempts failed. At the end of the ninth night, Goddess Durga slayed Mahishasura. 

Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
This painting shows a pivotal battle between Durga and a powerful demon named Mahasura. The demon, with an animal head and purple skin, appears three times, attacking the goddess with bow and arrow, sword and shield, and trident (this weapon is shown snapped in two, a sign that he will eventually lose).
 

On the nine days of Navratri, nine forms of Shakti are worshipped. Tenth day is called as Vijayadashmi = Vijay + Dashmi = Victory on tenth day. The tenth day that brought the triumph of good over evil.

Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Navratri The 9 Day Battle. Goddess Durga and Mahishasura
Mahishasura, Chamundi Mysore
 
A brief adaptation of the story as appears in the Devi-Mahatyma can be found here: 
Battle of the Ego: Goddess Durga and Mahishasura

Thanks,

With Inputs from Wikipedia, Images from deviantART, Google.

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