Saturday, 28 January 2017

Why do we Celebrate the Festival of Dusshehra?

Dushhera or popularly known as the festival of the triumph of good over evil is celebrated across various parts of the country with a great pomp and show. The word Dusherra is is actually a combination of two words, ‘dus’ which means ten and ‘hara’ means to obliterate. Dushhera is celebrated on the tenth day after the new moon, therefore it is known as “Vijaydashmi” too.

Like most of the Hindu festivals, there are some stories associated with Dushhera too.  One of the famous stories is related to Ramayana. This day marks the destruction of Ravana and the victory of Lord Rama as he was successful to rescue his wife Sita who was abducted by Ravana. The ten faces of Ravan symbolises the ten types of evil. Therefore, one of the important elements of the celebration of Dusshera includes the creation of large effigies of Ravan, his brother Kumbh Karan and son Meghnath packed with firecrackers.  These effigies are then set to fire during the evening time, symbolizing the destruction of evil.

The second story is associated with the Goddess Durga and accounts for the celebration of VIjaydashmi in Bengal and other neighbouring states.   The day is remembered of the victory of Durga Mata over Mahishasura.  The prior nine days signifies the days of the fight which took place between both of them, and finally on the tenth day Mahishasura was killed by the Goddess. This celebration of Durga victory is what makes Dusshera so auspicious for people dwelling in Bengal.

There are several other not so famous stories related too, but the common thought behind all of them is the same, victory of good over evil. Dussehra symbolises that ultimately in the end its the truth and goodness that stays and all other negative energies are bound to eradicate some day.

                                ---Vasundhara Bundela