Every year, in India, four types of Navratri are celebrated. Among them, Chaitra and Sharadiya are the popular ones, whereas the Magha and Ashadaha are known as the Gupt Navratri, and very few people are aware of this festival. Asnot many people are aware of them, they are called Gupt (meaning ‘secret’) Navratri.
Goddess Durga is the deity who is worshipped during Gupt Navratri. These navratras are not for all devotees, they are mainly celebrated by sadhaks or seekers of Tantra practice. During these Navratris, too, nine forms of Goddess Durga are worshipped, and the seeker prays for power and blessings by doing the Pooja.
The Mystery behind Gupt Navratri
During Gupt Navratri, all the 9 forms of Goddess Durga are worshipped. By doing the Shakti Pooja, the worshipper hopes to gain relief from all problems and gain victory. Gupt Navratri comes twice like normal Navratri, first in the month of Ashadha and then in Magha month. Magha Gupt Navratri 2021 was from Feb 12 to Feb 21, 2021.
During these two Navratris, the devotee aims to boost the power of sadhana and tantras. Those who believe in tantra and sadhna usually perform the Pooja. They also tend to keep a fast to please the Goddess and get her blessings for fulfilling all their desires. They also seek to please her for acquiring knowledge of the ten Mahavidyas associated with Tantra shakti.
Why does Gupt Navratri occur?
It is not very easy to worship the Goddess during Gupt Navratri, and the Pooja for the Goddess is done in secret, so these are called Gupt Navratri. Akhand jyot is lit in this Pooja, and the Goddess is worshipped during the daytime and in the evening. Devotees who perform secret sadhna worship the 10 Mahavidyas too. During this time. They recite Durga saptashati path for 9 days. The fast is considered complete only after the worship of young girls on the day of Ashtami or Navami.
Gupt Navratri Pooja
A kalash or pot is placed in front of Goddess Aadhya shakti at an auspicious time. In the pot, barley is kept for growing. On one side of this, another kalash containing water is placed, and a raw coconut is kept over it. After kalash sthapana is done, an Akhand Jyot is lit in front of Goddess Bhagwati. It is followed by Ganesha Pooja, and after it, Pooja for Varun dev and Vishnu dev is performed. Following this, Poojas for Shiva, Sun, Moon, and the nine Navagrahas (planets) are done. After worshipping all this, Goddess Bhagwati is also worshipped. During the Navratri days, a fast is observed, and Durga Saptashati and Devi Path are also recited.
Gupt Navratri and Tantra sadhna
Poojas for the ten mahavidyas are given great importance in Gupt Navratri. There are 10 Mahavidyas which supposedly originate from the subtle and aggressive forms of Goddess Mahakali. These Mahavidyas of Lord Shiva bestow accomplishment. The 10 Mahavidyas are believed to be the 10 forms of Goddess Durga. Each Mahavidya has the ability to solve all the problems of her devotee by taking different forms. These 10 Mahavidyas are of great use and importance in tantra sadhna.
Kaali- This is one of the Mahavidyas. Tantriks worship the Kaali form in tantra sadhna.
Tara- Worshipping DeviTara is considered mandatory for the tantriks. Tara is artistic, and she writes the laws of liberation for everybody.
Lalita- By worshipping Lalita, the worshipper gets salvation. According to the south-west rulers, Lalita is given the place of Chandi.
Bhuvneshwari- She is considered the owner of the creation of the world. She signifies extreme power. Her mantras are believed to give special powers among all the deities.
Tripur Bhairavi- Tripur Bhairavi is said to be full of tapogun and rajogun.
Chinnamastika- Also called Chintapoorni, she frees the devotee of all problems.
Dhumavati- Dhumavati fulfills the devotee’s desires. The appearance of Dhumavati is very scary, and she has adopted it to frighten and destroy the enemies.
Baglamukhi- She is the owner of suppression. By worshipping her, enemies will be destroyed, and all obstacles will be removed.
Matangi- Matangi is the owner of voice and sound. She contains the power of the entire universe. She fulfills her devotees’ desires.
Kamla- Kamla is the symbol of happiness and the Goddess of wealth. Those who seek material pleasures need to worship Mata Kamla.
Ashadha Gupt Navratri 2021 begins on July 11 and ends on July 19, 2021.