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sarva-ma~ggala-mA~ggalye shive sarvArthasAdhike |
sharaNye tryambake gauri nArAyaNi namo&stu te ||
Salutations to you, O radiant and fair complexioned Devi, the one who represents auspiciousness of all that is auspicious, the one who is the consort and the true energy of Lord Siva, the one who is three eyed and who represents the perfect means of accomplishing all desires and the one who gives refuge to all her devotees.
Goddess Durga is believed to be power behind the creation, preservation and destruction leading up to recreation of the cosmos. The word "Durga" means invincible or unconquerable. There are many incarnations of Goddess Durga such as Kali, Bhagvati, Bhavani, Ambika, Lalita, et al. After receiving a boon from Lord Brahma when Mahishasura became a menace on the earth as well as in the heaven, it was Goddess Durga who rose to the occasion and killed him.
Sri Durga has several arms which represent Her omnipotence and the capacity to protect devotees from all directions and walks of life. She stands on a lion which signifies Her power, will and determination to overcome all the demons including poverty and suffering, injustice and inequality, cruelty and laziness, ego and attachment, immorality and decadence. It also stands for the freedom from any form of fear. She does not tolerate any indiscretions by any individual who need to be dealt with and this is exemplified by Her eyes that are directed towards the right side as in our temple.
The bow and arrows represent energy. Thunderbolt (Lord Indra) signifies firmness whereas the Sudarshan Chakra (Sri Vishnu) represents unfailing weapon to destroy the evil and inspire righteousness. The Trident (Sri Siva) represents law and order and the removal of all three types of miseries-physical, mental and spiritual. The shiny sword that Goddess holds, symbolizes Absolute knowledge free from any doubts. The lotus (Pankaja) in her hand is not fully bloomed. It guarantees the devotee the success in due course of time provided if he continues on a righteous path in this muddy world filled with temptations.
Four day long Durga Puja is the biggest annual festival in Bengal and Orissa but typically throughout India the celebrations start with the 1st day of Ashwin and conclude with the grand celebration on the 10th day called Vijaya Dashami, the auspicious day of Victory. Our five pinnacled temple here is a replica of the Dakshineshwar Temple from Kolkata.