Durga Mantra Meaning:
„Om and Salutations to that feminine energy which protects from all manner of negative influences.”
This mantra invokes her name and her compassion to protect us against all manner of harm.
Goddess Durga is one of the most popular Goddesses in Hindu religion. She is a multi-dimensional Goddess, with many personas, many names, and many facets through all her forms, She is the embodiment of sacrifice, purity, knowledge, salvation, truth, and self-realization.
The Goddess is the warrior aspect of the Divine Mother/Brahman. She wields the weapons of the gods, is the slayer of demons, and the invincible force.
The Divine Mother is beyond all material attributes, ever omniscient and eternal. The Goddess is beyond any change, immutable and unattainable but by sincere spiritual practice. She is the refuge of the creation and her nature is of pure consciousness.
In Sanskrit „Durga” means the one who is unbeatable and can not be defeated hence unconquerable.
The word also signifies „Durgatinashini,” which translates into English as „the one who eliminates sufferings.”
A more elaborate meaning of the word „Durga” is ‘du’-‘r’-‘ga’ or the destroyer of all diseases and evils.
Similar to Lord Shiva, the Goddess is also referred to as „Triyambake,” which symbolizes the three eyed Goddess.
The right eye symbolizes action or the sun, the left eye symbolizes desire or the moon, and the central eye symbolizes knowledge or fire.
There are numerous aspects of the Goddess described in the Agamas and Puranas and the iconography is consequently very varied.
She is depicted as having 8 or 10 hands, signifying 8 quadrants or 10 directions in Hinduism. Hence, this suggests that the Goddess protects the followers from all directions.
The Goddess is most often shown riding a lion, hence Her august name, Simhavahini, „She who stands astride the king of beasts.”
She is magnificently dressed in royal red cloth and has various ornaments decorating Her personage. The red color represents action and the red clothes illustrate that She is always busy destroying evil and protecting mankind from suffering and pain caused by evil forces.
Her hair is dressed up in a crown (karandamukuta) which then flows out in long luxuriant tresses that are darkly luminous and soothing to the eye.
The different tools reflect the eminent supremacy that helps in controlling the universe and obey Her will.
The conch shell in Goddess Durga’s hand symbolizes the mystic word ‘Om’ or the „Pranava”, which indicates her holding on to God in the form of sound.
Arrow and bow in her second left lower hand represents a character, like Rama. When we face problems in our life we should not lose our values.
The thunderbolt represents firmness. The follower of the Goddess must be firm like a thunderbolt in one’s convictions. Like the thunderbolt that can break anything against which it strikes, without being distressed itself, the sincere follower needs to attack a challenge without losing his confidence.
Lotus flower in Her hand represents detachment. We must live in the world without attachment to the external world, just like the lotus flower which stays in dirty water yet smiles and gives its beauty to others.
This is the only way to receive the Goddess’ blessings.
The „Sudarshan-Chakra” or beautiful discus, which spins around the index finger of the Divine Mother, while not touching it, means that the entire world is subservient to the will of the Goddess and is at her command.
The Divine Mother uses this unfailing weapon to destroy evil and produce an environment conducive to the growth of goodness.
The sword that the Goddess holds in one of her hands represents knowledge, which has the sharpness of a sword. The knowledge that is free from all doubts is represented by the shine of the sword.
The „Trishul” or trident is a symbol of 3 qualities – Rajas (activity), Satwa (inactivity), and Tamas (non-activity) – and the Divine Mother is the remover of all the 3 kinds of miseries – mental, physical and spiritual.
9 Forms of Durga
She is worshiped in different forms. She is a form of „Shakti.”
The evolution of Shri Maha Saraswati, Shri Maha Laxmi and Shri Mahakali (the 3 main forms of „Shakti”) took place from Shri Brahma, Shri Vishnu, and Shri Mahesh respectively.
Each of these 3 deities gave rise to 3 more forms and all these 9 forms together are known as Nav-Durga.
Goddess Durga names:
In Navratri, worshiping all these forms of Goddess Durga is important.
Navratri puja is started with the Kalash Sthapana. According to Hindu customs, Kalash is considered to represent Lord Ganesha, therefore, the puja is started with chanting lord Ganesha’s mantra.
Thereafter, different forms of Goddess Durga are worshiped by these following mantras.
In some cases, She is compared with Mahadevi, the Supreme Goddess.
In the image of the Goddess cutting off the head of the buffalo-demon, She is commonly shown with 8 or 10 arms, and the hands hold weapons and a lotus.
Mahishasura Mardini, the demon, may be shown half emerging in his human form from the carcass of his former buffalo form.
The Goddess is considered infinitely fierce to her enemies and infinitely loving to her devotees. She is a compassionate Goddess who relieves all the sufferings and troubles of her devotees, no matter how profound their miseries are.
Moreover, the Divine Mother protects humanity from misery and evil by destroying evil forces such as jealousy, selfishness, hatred, prejudice, ego, and anger.
What is required is humility and acknowledgment of one’s blindness and incompetence, and honest invocation of the Mother’s Grace.
The Goddess is the ultimate representation of infinite purity, power, and strength of purpose, which resides within the divine essence of every human being.
Durga Mantra Explanation On Syllables:
- Om – the sound of the universe; the essence of everything; the root of Hinduism itself; usually begins and ends all Hindu prayers;
- Dum – the seed mantra of Mata Ji Durga;
- Durgayei – the complete, formal Sanskrit pronunciation of Maa Durga’s name;
- Namaha – in Your essence, we bow to You; In Your presence, only You are recognized.
The Goddess is said to have the combined powers of Lakshmi, Saraswati, and Kali. This mantra is often used for protection against internal or external negative forces.
Also, chanting Durga mantra removes the effect of all types of black magic, unfavorable effect of negative planets, bad luck or health problems.
It is considered that by chanting this healing mantra daily, the Universal Mother would eliminate all the mental, physical and economic problems in your life.
Some other Maa Durga mantras are:
- Om Aing Hreeng Kleeng Chamundaye Viche Aum.
- Om Hreeng Dung Durgaayai Namah.
- Sri Durga Saptasati.
Durga Gayatri Mantra:
”Aum Mahaa-Dhevyai Cha Vidmahe
Durgaayai Cha Dhimahee
Thanno Dhevee Prachodayath.”
Durga Puja is a festival during which Goddess Durga is adored and worshiped. This festival is very well-known in the states of West Bengal, Bihar, Orissa, and Nepal, although the victory of the Goddess over the demon Mahisasura is also important in other states of India as well.
During this festival, Goddess Durga is worshiped as the mother of Saraswati, Lakshmi, Kartikeya, and Ganesha.
Praying to the form Lakshmi is linked with the gain of divine qualities and spiritual wealth, praying to the form of Durga destroys all evils and vices inside us, and praying to the form of Goddess Saraswati gives the knowledge and wisdom which liberates sentient beings from all evil and negativity.