India is a land of varying cultures and the rich cultural heritage of India in clearly depicted in the numerous festivals of the country. India is often termed as the “Land of Festivals”. There are festivals for every season and every state during which people all over the country indulge in the zeal and festivities of the events. All the festivals and celebrations depict the cultural unity and integrity of the country. During the festivals, people take part in the ceremonies and rituals irrespective of their caste, creed, age and status.
Navratri is one of the largest Hindu festivals celebrated every year. The exact dates of the festival are fixed by the movement of the moon according to the Hindu lunar calendar but approximately it takes place around September or October. The festival of Navratri is marked by the celebrations of nine days. On each day one of the nine incarnations of the Goddedd Shakti is worshipped. The nine incarnations of the Goddess can be listed as follows; “Maa Shailputri”, “Maa Brahamcharini”, “Maa Chandraghanta”, “maa Kushmanda”, “Maa Skandamata”, “Maa Katyayani”, “Maa Kalratri”, “Maa Mahagauri” and “Maa Siddhidatri”. The festival of Navaratri owes its origin to a number oh historic legends and stories. The festival is celebrated in various parts of the country along with different rituals but however the central idea remains the same. Apart from India the festival is celebrated with much pomp and rejoicings in different parts of the world wherever Hindu societies exists.
Apart from worship, dance and music forms an integral part of the cultural event and are carried out in various ways across the various parts of the country according to the regional traditions. The garba dance of Gujrat organized in various places of the state is an interesting event and people from all over the country and various parts of the world visit to experience the exotic celebrations. After the nine days of the worships, there comes the event of Ramnavami which is also a popular event of the country. The day is marked by the ritual of inviting young boys and girls and food is served to them who are considered as the incarnations of the great Lord himself. The initial day that is the 1st day of the festival of Navratri is also considered as the commencing day of the New Year as per the Indian traditional culture. The day is celebrated with much pomp and vigor and is considered to be a holy day for starting any new venture.
Thus to conclude, it can be said the Navratri is one of the biggest festivals of the country that not only brings its people together, but the event also symbolizes the national integrity and unity.