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Dussehra
FESTIVALS

Dussehra: Points You Need to Know

Dussehra is reveled with high energy and celebrations by the Hindus. It is one of the most prominent October month festivals. The holiday indicates the triumph of good over evil. The 10-day long festivities include fairs and Ramlila – an impersonation of the scenes from Ramayana.

Dussehra messages

On the 10th and the last day, the exhibition of Ravana Dahan is enacted. It is ensued by the burning of the effigies of Ravana, Meghnath, and Kumbhakarna. The melas or fairs are accommodated at many Ramlila grounds over the country.

A Hindi Poem on Dussehra

Including food stalls, amusement stalls, Ferris-wheels, and other entertaining activities. The festival areas are brightened up, and even famous personalities make appearances at the various popular Ramlila places.

Amidst all the commonalities, the surprising fact is that inferences for Dussehra commemorations vary from one place to another, along with the elements. 

 

Why Do We Celebrate Dussehra?

In many parts of north India, people burn large and colorful effigies of Ravana and his offspring Meghanada and sibling Kumbhakaran in the ground or open fields. People engage in the event and savor it.

Dussehra festival is also celebrated by composing a dramatic personification of life accounts of Rama known as Ram Lila.

Places Celebrate Festival :

At the conclusion of Durga Puja, people commemorate this celebration in West Bengal, Bihar, and Odisha. Bengalis choir folk songs immerse or submerge the idols of Goddess Durga in water bodies.

In Himachal Pradesh, the Vijayadashami celebration in Kullu ranks as the International festival by the State Government.

Northern and western states of India: 

On the other hand, several northern and western states of India commemorate Dussehra as Lord Rama’s triumph over Ravana. Long back, King Dasharatha desired to crown Rama, his eldest son, as the King of Ayodhya. Everybody in the kingdom was ecstatic about the choice and was anxiously anticipating the coronation celebration. However, Queen Kaikeyi wants her son Bharata to be the King of Ayodhya. So, on the threshold of the ceremony, she insists two boons that King Dashratha had conferred her ages back. She asks that Rama be banished in the forests for fourteen years and demands for Bharata to be crowned as the King of Ayodhya.

Exile:

King Dashratha had no alternative but to award her these blessings. So, Lord Rama goes into exile, accompanying his wife Sita and his brother Lakshmana. For thirteen years, they relinquished all royal indulgences and walked in the forests.

Last year in exile: 

During their last year in exile, a Rakshasi by the name of Surpanakha attempts to lure the two brothers. She loses and then attempts to kill Sita. However, Lakshmana arrests her and chops off her ears and nose. Beaten and humiliated, Surpanakha retreats to her brother Ravana, the malevolent king of Lanka.

Sita abduction:

Ravana resolves to revenge his sister’s disgrace and determines to abduct Sita. He kidnaps Sita and carries her to his kingdom, where he urges her to espouse him. Sita declines as her dedication to Lord Rama is unfathomable. Ravana then keeps her captive in the Ashoka grove.

As soon as Lord Rama and Lakshmana discover this, they set out to rescue Sita. On the journey, they meet Lord Hanuman, who is a fervent follower of Lord Rama. After Hanuman visits Lanka, he discovers Sita and convinces her that Lord Rama will soon liberate her.

Hanuman’s Role:

Once Hanuman notifies Lord Rama about Sita’s security, they all advance towards Lanka. A tremendous battle follows among the armies of Lord Rama and Ravana. He slays most of the Lankan army and faces the ten-headed Ravana.

After a tumultuous battle between the two. Lord Rama ultimately slays Ravana and reunites with Sita. After completing their exile. They all travel back to Ayodhya, where everyone crown Lord Rama the King of Ayodhya.

What is Dussehra, and Why is it Celebrated?

While Dussehra has many names across India– Durga Puja or Vijayadashami in the East and North-east, Dussehra in Northern and Western states. The spirit of the festival prevails the same, i.e., the Dharma (good) predominating over Adharma (evil). Durga Puja or Vijayadashmi commemorates Maa Durga’s triumph over demon Mahishasura to defend Dharma. 

Ram Lila

At the same time, the story about Dussehra implies Lord Rama’s victory over Ravana. The day also signifies the end of Ram Lila– a concise retelling of Rama, Sita, and Laxman’s story. On Dussehra, people burn down overlooking effigies of demon King Ravana, Kumbhakaran, and Meghanad (representative of evil) with fireworks. Thus evoking observers that good, no matter what, always prevails over evil.

Arjuna & Kuru clan

On the same day, Arjuna demolished the Kuru clan, including great heroes like Bhisma, Drona, Karna, Ashwathama, on his own in the battle of Kurushetra in the Hindu epic Mahabharata.

As discussed earlier, Dussehra or Vijayadashami has several legends following it. Therefore, the festival commemorates in diverse ways across India. For example, in most North or Western Indian states, Dussehra rejoices in honor of Lord Rama. Ram lilas, which are a re-enactment of musical performances based on the Ramcharitramanas. Direct to Dussehra when people burn huge effigies of Ravana, Kumbhakaran, and Meghanad.

Honor of Maa Saraswati :

On the contrary, many places in South India observe the festivity in honor of Maa Saraswati– the Hindu Goddess of wisdom and creativity. On this day, people clean and sanctify their instruments of subsistence and ask Goddess Saraswati’s blessings. In Western India, particularly in Gujarat, people observe fasts. They revere the nine avatars of Goddess Durga for the nine days of Navratras leading to Dussehra or Vijayadashami. People play Dandiya and Garba during these nine days. 

Tenth day: 

People immerse Maa Durga’s idol in water on the tenth day. Signifying her return to Mount Kailash with Lord Shiva. Meantime, in West Bengal, Durga Puja traverses to Vijayadashami, also named Bijoy Dashomi. Wherein people immerse clay sculptures of Maa Durga in water. Thus bidding adieu to the goddess. Right before the immersion, Bengali women gratify in Sindoor Khela. Wherein they apply vermilion (sindoor) on each other and wear red clothes, thus signifying Maa Durga’s victory.

What is the date of Dussehra 2021?

The Dussehra holiday 2021 will fall on Saturday, 16 October. The Dussehra 2020 fell on Sunday, 25 October. Dussehra 2019 was on Tuesday, 8 October.

What is the Story of Dussehra? 

Here are three most popular stories on the festival.

Ram VS Ravan

Most of the northern states of India see this celebration as the day when Rama eliminated the ten-headed king of Lanka, Ravana. According to the Ramayana, Ravana abducted Rama’s wife, Sita. After many years of penance, Ravana had earned a blessing from Lord Brahma, which made him undefeatable. Rama, the seventh incarnation of Vishnu, entrapped the blessing and managed to eliminate the demon king in a raging battle on this day. The word ‘Dussehra’ involves two Hindi words, ‘dus’ signifying ten and ‘hara’ indicating annihilated. Therefore, when united, ‘Dussehra’ stands for the day when Lord Rama killed the ten evil faces of Ravana.

Durga VS Mahishasura 

In many different states of India, the festival is in devotion to the triumph of Goddess Durga over the demon Mahishasura. According to the Puranas, Mahishasura performs rigorous penance to be eternal. However, when Lord Brahma informs him that the wish is not plausible. The overbearing demon modifies his request rather than requesting that if someone kills him it had to be by a woman. The profoundly prejudiced Mahishasura was greatly convinced that no woman was powerful enough to kill him. 

Soon, with his newfound power, he began wreaking havoc in the three worlds, terrorizing even the gods themselves. That’s when goddess Durga came to their salvation. She confronted the demon and fought with him in a nine-day long battle, eventually slaughtering the mighty asura on the tenth day. This is why Navaratri festivals are nine days long. With every day devoted to one of the nine avatars of Durga. Completing with Durga Puja commemorations on the tenth day. 

Arjuna and Saraswati

According to the Mahabharata, Dussehra also signifies when Arjuna single-handedly put the enormous Kaurava army to sleep. By summoning the Sammohan Astra. Arjuna symbolises with Vijaya. The one who is ever triumphant. Thus, the day became famous as “Vijaya Dashami.”

In other sections of the country, Dussehra is the festival of Saraswati, the goddess of knowledge. People celebrate the goddess simultaneously with their instruments of business.

 

What is the date of Dussehra 2021?

The Dussehra holiday 2021 will fall on Saturday, 16 October. The Dussehra 2020 fell on Sunday, 25 October. Dussehra 2019 was on Tuesday, 8 October.

Different Names of Lord Ram

  • Adipurusha
  • Anantaguna
  • Brahmanaya
  • Danta
  • Dayasara
  • Dhanurdhara
  • Dhanvine
  • Hari
  • Jagadguruve
  • Jaitra
  • Janakivallabha
  • Janardana
  • Jitakrodha
  • Jitamitra
  • Jitavarashaye
  • Jitendra
  • Kausaleya
  • Mahabhuja
  • Mahadeva
  • Mahapurusha
  • Mahayogi
  • Mahodara
  • Para
  • Parabrahmane
  • Paraga
  • Parakasha
  • Paramapurusha
  • Paramatmana
  • Parasmaidhamne
  • Parasmaijyotishe
  • Parasme
  • Paratpara
  • Paresha
  • Peetavasane
  • Pitrabhakta
  • Punyodaya
  • Purvabhashine
  • Raghava
  • Rajeevalochana
  • Rajendra
  • Ram
  • Ramabhadra
  • Ramachandra
  • Sarvadevadideva
  • Sarvadevastuta
  • Sarvadevatmika
  • Sathyavache
  • Satyavrata
  • Setukrute
  • Shashvata
  • Shoora
  • Shrimate
  • Shyamanga
  • Smitavaktra
  • Sundara
  • Tatakantaka
  • Trilokatmane
  • Tripurte
  • Trivikrama
  • Vagmine
  • Varaprada
  • Vedantasarea
  • Vedatmane
  • Viradhavadha
  • Yajvane

 

Ravana: A Learned Scholar

Ravana was also a learned scholar. He had mastery in astrology. When Ravana was dying in the battlefield Lord Ram said to Laxman to extract some of the knowledge from Ravana. Then Ravana told Laxman the three lessons.

  • Never underestimate your enemy.
  • Don’t do bad to any people.
  • Don’t delay good, if you have a thought of helping any person then do it then and there.

He was a poet, a musician, played Veena. Also,  a devotee of Lord Mahadev Shiva ji. Along with that Ravana was  a good architect. Therefore, some of  qualities of Ravana makes him a learned scholar.

10 Heads of Ravana Depict 10 Different Evils of Society

His ten heads different evils of the society.

  • Kama (Lust)
  • Krodh (Anger)
  • Moh (Attachment)
  • Lobh (Greed)
  • Mada (Pride)
  • Swarth (Selfishness)
  • Matsara (Jealousy)
  • Ahankara (Ego)
  • Amanavata (Lack of Humanity)
  • Anayaya (Injustice)

 

 

Reference: 1. wikipidia

 

 

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