Day 2: Creative Durga Puja / by Chanti Tacoronte-Perez

Today we honor the Yogini Shri Brahmacharini, she personifies truth, purity, love and unwavering shraddha (faith). This Yogini walks with bare feet “symbolizing that there are no shortcuts in life and you cannot reach the goal any faster.” Indu Aurora The only way to honor dharma—your own sacred path is though the divine commitment towards self-mastery, and the knowing that whatever comes your way, you can handle!

It’s a nice offering to take a step towards your practice. Whether that’s sitting down and writing, meditating or coloring a yantra, just move in the direction of your goals, knowing that each step moves you towards her. Go out and feel the grass or sand on your feet—symbolically walk as the Goddess does. 


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Honoring the Devi comes in song. Last year while I was in Haridwar for the spring Navaratri, we sung every day. My friend Seema had a plastic box, where she kept all the little hymn books. Her mom liked certain songs and would call out the title of what she wanted to hear next. Then we would all join along however we could. 

My favorite to hear and to try to chant along to, was the Sri Mahisasureamardini stotram:  a praise to Durga—She who triumphs over the Buffalo Demon Mahisasura. This demon symbolizes the power within all of us that clings and lords over: confusion, pride, disbelief, doubt, hidden restlessness, hypocrisy and fickleness.

The refrain says: 
Jaya Jaya he mahis[h]asura-mardini ramyakapardini s[h]ailasute

Victory, Victory to the Slayer of the buffalo demon, the beloved of Shiva, and the laugher of the mountain


There is also a shorter hymn of the Navadurgas—the 9 forms of Durga that comes from the Kavacha describing the Armor of the Devi and invoking those 9 forms. Spend a little time in singing to her or even playing the music out loud and just listening. 

  From Swami Satyananda Saraswati's translation of the Devimahattmya

From Swami Satyananda Saraswati's translation of the Devimahattmya