Why Should We Celebrate Mahalaya?
Mahalaya Paksha is a 15-day period observed during the month of Bhadrapada (mid-Sep to mid-Oct). Also known as a Pitru Paksha, Pitri Pokkho, and many other names, this fortnight is favorable to offer oblations to your ancestors. As important the period is for ancestors, the period also marks the beginning of Navaratri and Devi Paksha. It is believed that on the final day of the fortnight, the mother goddess Durga descends to the earth plane to bless her ardent devotees.
Mahalaya: The Beginning of Devi Paksha
Mahalaya Amavasya is widely observed across the country to offer ancestral rites and satiate the souls of their forefathers. In Bengal, the day marks the auspicious beginning of Devi Paksha and Durga Pooja celebrations. According to mythology, Goddess Durga descended to the earth plane on this day to slay the demon Mahishasura. To add to her powers, she was equipped with several weapons by the Gods and killed the demon after a fierce battle. Hence, the Goddess is also called as ‘Mahishasura Mardini.’
On Mahalaya, there is a tradition to listening to this story from Chandi Kavya to invite the Goddess, who descends to the earth. Chanting verses and mantras from the sacred text can invoke her protective blessings and assure the victory of good over evil. Celebrate the Mother Goddess this Mahalaya and appease your ancestral souls to lead a happy and prosperous life.