Navratri Day 1   
21st  March 2015  (Saturday)      Pratipada     
Ghatasthapana  Muhurta              06:28 to 07:35

1. Ghata Sthapana : First step of Navratri Puja is Ghata Sthapana. At the time of Ghata Sthapana, place a chowki where you want to put photo or idol of 9 forms of Mother Goddess Durga. Sit peacefully near the chowki.

(Note : In year 2015, Ghat sthapana muhurta is from 6:28 am to 07:35 am on 21st March 2015.)

Near this chowki put the clay pot to sow barley seeds. Pour the clay pot with layers of barley seeds and soil. Sprinkle water on it. Best, if you do Ghata Sthapana according to muhurat.

2. Take the Kalash or Ghat. Pour it with sacred water of Holy River Ganga (or with pure water if sacred water is not available). Put scent, flower and coins in it. Put five leaves of Mango or Ashoka tree on mouth of Ghat.

Put lid on the mouth of Ghat. Fill the lid with raw rice. Take coconut and wrap it in a red cloth. Tie Moli around it. Place it on the lid as shown in picture. Place the Ghata on clay pot. You completed the Ghata Sthapana.

3. Now the second step is pray and worship of Goddess and all Gods in Ghat. Lit the lamp, because all kinds of puja starts with lighting a lamp. Now invoke (avahan, call) all Gods and sacred rivers in Ghat and pray them to purify water and reside there for nine days, destroy all obstacles of life and give wisdom.

Do worship of Kalash or Ghat with Panchopchar. Panchopchar means worship of deity with five things, i.e. Scent, Flower, Dhoop, Deepak and Naivedya. Offer these five things to deities present in Ghat. Don’t put these things inside the Ghat, put these five things near Ghat instead.

4. Chowki Sthapana : Now the third step is, installation and invoking of Goddess Durga. For this, spread the red cloth on chowki. Tie Moli around it. Now place idol or picture of Goddess Durga on the chowki.

5. Durga Puja : Now invoke Goddess Durga in idol or photo. Pray Mother Goddess to come and stay at your home for nine days of Navratri and give love in her lotus feet. After praying, do panchopchar. Offer five things to Mother Goddess. Start DURGA SAPTSHATI PATH by right way.

Navratri Puja Vidhi Basic Rules

1. Keep Purity of mind, body and place of worship during Navratri.
2. During Navratri, do worship with full devotion and love in the feet of Mother Goddess.
3. Worship at a particular time daily. It improves the results of Pujan.

Things Required For Navratri Puja

Collect all these things before you start Navratri puja.

1. Photo or Idol of Goddess Durga (in absence of Idol, a photo in which 9 Durgaare shown is     preferable)
2. Things required for Ghata Sthapana

3. A clay pot to sow barley seeds
4. Soil to pour in clay pot
5. Barley Seeds
6.Water to sprinkle on soil
7. Kalash or Ghat (a kind of small pitcher) made of Clay with lid
8. Naariyal (Coconut)
9. Red cloth to wrap coconut.
10. Five Leaves of Mango tree or Ashoka Tree to put in kalash
11. Mala (flower garland)
12. Coins

13. Chowki or a place to put idol or photo of Goddess Durga
14. Red Cloth to spread on Chowki
15. Sacred Thread (Moli)
16. Akshat (raw rice)
17. Things required for Panchopchar :

17.1 Itra (Scent)
17.2 Flower, Garland (Mala)
17.3 Dhoop
17.4 Deepak or lamp made of clay (with batti and ghee)
17.5 Naivedya (Food to offer, may include fruits, sweets and whatever you cooked in your kitchen etc.)

18. Roli for Tilak
19. Puja ki Thali (plate)

20. Bell

 Navratri Day 1  Mata Shailputri Pujan

She is a daughter of Himalaya and first among nine Durgas. In previous birth she was the daughter of Daksha. Her name was Sati - Bhavani. i.e. the wife of Lord Shiva. Once Daksha had organized a big Yagna and did not invite Shiva. But Sati being obstinate, reached there. Thereupon Daksha insulted Shiva. Sati could not tolerate the insult of husband and burnt herself in the fire of Yagna. In other birth she became the daughter of Himalaya in the name of Parvati - Hemvati and got married with Shiva. As per Upnishad she had torn and the egotism of Indra, etc. Devtas. Being ashamed they bowed and prayed that, "In fact, thou are Shakti, we all - Brahma, Vishnu and Shiv are capable by getting Shakti from you." 

Dyan Mantra (ध्यान मंत्र) 
वंदे वांच्छितलाभायाचंद्रार्धकृतशेखराम्.
पूणेंदुनिभांगौरी मूलाधार स्थितांप्रथम दुर्गा त्रिनेत्रा.
प्रफुल्ल वदनांपल्लवाधरांकांतकपोलांतुंग कुचाम्.

Stuti -
या देवी सर्वभू‍तेषु माँ शैलपुत्री रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नम:।।

                                Navratri Day 2 & 3   22nd  March 2015 (Sunday)                                     

                                   Dwitiya      Brahmacharini Puja

Navratri Worship - Goddess Brahmacharini is worshipped on the second day of Navratri. 

Governing Planet - It is believed that Lord Mangal, the provider of all fortunes, is governed by Goddess Brahmacharini. 

Iconography - Goddess Brahmacharini is depicted as walking on the bare feet. She has two hands and She carries Jap Mala in the right hand and Kamandal in the left hand. 

Devanagari Name - ब्रह्मचारिणी 

Stuti -
या देवी सर्वभू‍तेषु माँ ब्रह्मचारिणी रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नम:।। 

Details - Goddess Brahmacharini did severe penance to get Lord Shiva as her husband. She performed hard austerity and due to which She was called Brahmacharini. 

It is stated that during her penance to get Lord Shiva as her husband She spent 1000 years on the diet of flowers and fruits and another 100 years on the diet on leafy vegetables while sleeping on the floor. 

Further She followed strict fasting regimen while staying at open place in scorching summers, harsh winters and stormy rains. According to Hindu mythologies She was on diet of Bilva leaves for 3000 years while She prayed to Lord Shankar. Later She even stopped eating Bilva leaves and continued her penance without any food and water. She was known as Aparna when She left eating Bilva leaves. 

As legends go Goddess Brahmacharini immolated herself by wishing to get a father in her next birth who can respect her husband Lord Shiva.

                                 Tritiya        Chandraghanta Puja

The name of third Shakti is Chandraghanta. There is a half-circular moon in her forehead. She is charmful and bright. She is Golden color. She has three eyes and ten hands holding with ten types of swords - etc. weapons and arrows etc. She is seated on Lion and ready for going in war to fight. She is unprecedented image of bravery. The frightful sound of her bell terrifies all the villains, demons and danavas.
Navratri Worship - Goddess Chandraghanta is worshipped on the third day of Navratri. 

Governing Planet - It is believed that the planet Shukra is governed by Goddess Chandraghanta. 

Iconography - Goddess Chandraghanta mounts on the tigress. She wears the semi-circular moon (Chandra) on her forehead. The half-moon on her forehead looks like the bell (Ghanta) and because of that she is known as Chandra-Ghanta. She is depicted with ten hands. Goddess Chandraghanta carries Trishul, Gada, Sword and Kamandal in her four right hands and keeps the fifth right hand in Varada Mudra. She carries lotus flower, Arrow, Dhanush and Japa Mala in her four left hands and keeps the fifth left hand in Abhaya Mudra. 
Devanagari Name - चंद्रघंटा 

Stuti -
या देवी सर्वभू‍तेषु माँ चंद्रघंटा रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नम:।।

                                    Navratri Day 4   23rd March 2015  (Monday)  
                                     Chaturthi     Kushmanda Puja

Name of fourth Durga is Kushmanda. The Shakti creates egg, ie. Universe by mere laughing .She resides in solar systems. She shines brightly in all the ten directions like Sun. She has eight hands. Seven types of weapons are shining in her seven hands. Rosary is in her right hand. She seems brilliant riding on Lion. She likes the offerings of "Kumhde." Therefore her name "Kushmanda" has become famous.

Navratri Worship - Goddess Kushmanda is worshipped on the fourth day of Navratri. 

Governing Planet - It is believed that Goddess Kushmanda provides direction and energy to the Sun. Hence God Sun is governed by Goddess Kushmanda. 

Iconography - Goddess Siddhidatri rides on the lioness. She is depicted with eight hands. She has Kamandal, Dhanush, Bada and Kamal in the right hands and Amrit Kalash, Jap Mala, Gada and Chakra in the left hands in that order. 

Devanagari Name - कूष्माण्डा 

Stuti -
या देवी सर्वभू‍तेषु माँ कूष्माण्डा रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नम:।।

                             Navratri Day 5  24th March 2015  (Tuesday)  
                                   Panchami Skandamata Puja

Fifth name of Durga is "Skanda Mata". The daughter of Himalaya, after observing penance got married with Shiva. She had a son named "Skanda." Skanda is a leader of the army of Gods. Skanda Mata is a deity of fire. Skanda is seated in her lap. She has three eyes and four hands. She is white and seated on a lotus.

Navratri Worship - Goddess Skandamata is worshipped on the fifth day of Navratri. 

Governing Planet - It is believed that the planet Budha is governed by Goddess Skandamata. 

Iconography - Goddess Skandamata mounts on the ferocious lion. She carries baby Murugan in her lap. Lord Murugan is also known as Kartikeya and brother of Lord Ganesha. Goddess Skandamata is depicted with four hands. She carries lotus flowers in her upper two hands. She holds baby Murugan in one of her right hand and keeps the other right hand in Abhaya Mudra. She sits on lotus flower and because of that Skandamata is also known as Goddess Padmasana. 

Devanagari Name - स्कन्दमाता 

Stuti -
या देवी सर्वभू‍तेषु माँ स्कन्दमाता रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नम:।।

                           Navratri Day 6   25th March 2015  (Wednesday) 
                                       Shashthi    Katyayani Puja

Navratri Worship - Goddess Katyayani is worshipped on the sixth day of Navratri. 

Governing Planet - It is believed that the planet Brihaspati is governed by Goddess Katyayani. 

Iconography - Goddess Katyayani rides on the magnificent lion and depicted with four hands. Goddess Katyayani carries lotus flower and sword in her left hands and keeps her right hands in Abhaya and Varada Mudras. 

Devanagari Name - कात्यायनी 

Stuti -
या देवी सर्वभू‍तेषु माँ कात्यायनी रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नम:।।

                                Navratri Day 7  26th  March 2015  (Thursday)

                                Maha Saptami    Kalaratri Puja

Seventh Durga is Kalratri. She is black like night. Durga hairs are unlocked. She has put on necklaces shining like lightening. She has three eyes which are round like universe. Her eyes are bright. Thousands of flames of fire come out while respiring from nose. She rides on Shava (dead body). There is sharp sword in her right hand. Her lower hand is in blessing mood. The burning torch (mashal) is in her left hand and her lower left hand is in fearless style, by which she makes her devotees fearless. Being auspicious she is called "Shubhamkari."

Navratri Worship - Goddess Kalaratri is worshipped on the seventh day of Navratri. 

Governing Planet - It is believed that the planet Shani is governed by Goddess Kalaratri. 

Iconography - Goddess Kalaratri complexion is dark black and She rides on a donkey. She is depicted with four hands. Her right hands are in Abhaya and Varada Mudra and She carries sword and the deadly iron hook in her left hands. 

Devanagari Name - कालरात्रि 

Stuti -
या देवी सर्वभू‍तेषु माँ कालरात्रि रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नम:।।

                      Navratri Day 8  27th March 2015  (Friday)   Ashtami
                                           Durga Ashtami  Mahagauri Puja
                                                       Annapurna Ashtami
                                                               Sandhi Puja  

                                   Sandhi Puja Muhurta = 25:17+ to 26:05+

                                           2015 Chaitra Navratri Sandhi Puja

Sandhi Puja has special significance during Navratri Puja. It is done at the juncture when Ashtami Tithi ends and Navami Tithi starts. It is believed that Devi Chamunda was appeared during this time to kill demons Chanda and Munda. 

Sandhi Puja prevails for two Ghatis which approximately lasts for 48 minutes. Sandhi Puja Muhurta might fall at any time during the day and Sandhi Puja is done during that time only. 

The Eighth Durga is "Maha Gauri." She is as white as a conch, moon and Jasmine. She is of eight years old. Her clothes and ornaments are white and clean. She has three eyes. She rides on bull She has four hands. The above left hand is in "Fearless - Mudra" and lower left hand holds "Trishul." The above right hand has tambourine and lower right hand is in blessing style. She is calm and peaceful and exists in peaceful style. It is said that when the body of Gauri became dirty due to dust and earth while observing penance, Shiva makes it clean with the waters of Gangas. Then her body became bright like lightening. There fore, she is known as "Maha Gauri" . 

Navratri Worship - Goddess Mahagauri is worshipped on the eighth day of Navratri. 

Governing Planet - It is believed that the planet Rahu is governed by Goddess Mahagauri. 

Iconography - The mount of Goddess Mahagauri as well as Goddess Shailputri is bull and because of that she is also known as Vrisharudha (वृषारूढ़ा). Goddess Mahagauri is depicted with four hands. She carries Trishul in one right hand and keeps the second right hand in Abhaya Mudra. She adorns Damaru in the one left hand and keeps the second left hand in Varada Mudra. 

Devanagari Name - महागौरी 

Stuti -
या देवी सर्वभू‍तेषु माँ महागौरी रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नम:।।

                       Navratri Day 9  28th March 2015 (Saturday)   Navami
                   Mata Sidhhidatri Puja and Hawan

Ninth Durga us Siddhidatri. There are eight Siddhis , they are- Anima, Mahima, Garima, Laghima, Prapti, Prakamya, Iishitva & Vashitva. Maha Shakti gives all these Siddhies. It is said in "Devipuran" that the Supreme God Shiv got all these Siddhies by worshipping Maha Shakti. With her gratitude the half body of Shiv has became of Goddess and there fore his name "Ardhanarishvar" has became famous. The Goddess drives on Lion. She has four hands and looks pleased. This form of Durga is worshiped by all Gods, Rishis-Munis, Siddhas, Yogis, Sadhakas and devotees for attaining the best religious asset.

Navami Homa is very significant ritual during Navratri and Durga Puja. Navami Homa is also known as Chandi Homa and Chandi Homam. People perform Navami Homa to please Goddess Durga and seek Her blessing for the good health and the victory over all sort of obstacles in life. 

Navami Homa during Navratri and Durga Puja is done during day time as it is believed that Homa done during night is not fruitful. Hence Navami Homa is done during day time while Navami Tithi is prevailing. Homa during Durga Puja is suggested after Navami Puja. 

Most people perform Navami Homa while chanting 700 verses from Durga Saptashati and Aahuti(आहुति) is done on each of the verse. Hence one needs at least 2 to 3 hours to perform ritualistically minimum Homam during Navami. In some years Navami Tithi gets over pretty soon after sunrise and one doesn’t get enough time to perform Navami Puja and Homa. 

If Navami Tithi gets over pretty soon after sunrise then it starts before Sayanakal on previous day and a good portion of Navami Tithi prevails on Ashtami Tithi. If it happens then Navami Homa can be done on the previous day and it is suggested in religious texts. The Homa on Ashtami Tithi could be started any time while Ashtami Tithi is prevailing and should be finished when Navami Tithi starts prevailing but before sunset. In other words Homa should be continued while Tithi crosses over Ashtami to Navami. 

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