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Navaratri Day 10: The Journey Continues

Image by Ved Sutra is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. Based on a work at http://vedsutra.com/media. From wikimedia

Behold, the devi is leaving!
The mountain daughter returns to her journey.
Durga absorbs her avatars:
Shailaputri and Brahmacharini,
Chandraghanta and Kushmanda,
Skandamata and Katyayani,
Kaalaratri and Mahagauri and Siddhidatri,
all return to the great mother
as rivers to the sea.
Maha Durga, you are the creator and the destroyer.
You are the play of ignorance and the knowledge that liberates.
You are the beginning and end of time and You are eternal.
All knowledge and all women are your embodiments.
Great Devi, we praise you who are beyond all praise.
Relieve our suffering, grant us health and prosperity,
protect us and enlighten us
who are in the end enfolded in you.
Om Devi Durgyai Namah.

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Navaratri Day 9: Accomplishment

By Suraj Belbase from Wikimedia Commons

When the battle is won, the demon vanquished,
the blood drunk down and washed away
the devi in the lotus displays magic powers:

to grow infinitely large or vanishingly small,
fly through the air, live without eating,
walk on water, pass through the ground,
sit in snow and walk on fire,
touch the moon and reach the sun,
acquire anything, travel anywhere,
control the elements, raise the dead,
call anything into existence and destroy it again,
know anything, rule all the worlds.
Siddhidatri drop your blessings
into our open hands.
Om Devi Siddhidatryai Namah.

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Navaratri Day 8: Purification

By Jonoikobangali CC BY-SA 3.0 from Wikimedia Commons

After the violence of battle
and the finality of victory
there is peace.
Skin soaked with blood
Mahagauri goes to the river
to wash herself clean.
She emerges covered with water drops
sparkling in the brilliant sunlight.
Mahagauri come to us on your white bull,
wash away our transgressions and regrets,
bring us the knowledge which will free us,
renew us and grant us peace.
Om Devi Mahagauryai Namah.

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Navaratri Day 7: The Destroyer

Raja Ravi Varma via Wikimedia Commons

When the blood of the demon falls to the ground
demons spring from each drop. Innumerable,
they threaten to overwhelm the world.
Black as the infinite night Kaalaratri comes.
She strikes the blow,
she eats the demons,
she drinks the blood.
When only one is left
she drains him dry
and he tastes the final dissolution.
Only she is left,
her tongue red with blood.
She is all there is.
Kaalaratri protect us
Kaalaratri enlighten us
Kaalaratri devour us
until only you remain.

Om Devi Kaalaratriyai Namah.

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Navaratri Day 6: Battle

By Suraj Belbase from Wikimedia

The wisest sages know
sometimes you have no choice.
In this moment
to surrender is to die
to run is to die
to fail is to die.
To survive means to fight, win, and kill.
Katyayani raise your sword
save us from evil
strike our enemies
grant us victory.
Om Devi Katyayanai Namah.

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Navaratri Day 5: The Warrior

By Jonoikobangali – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, From wikimedia.

The lion mount carries the goddess gently.
Other fierce devis bear sword, mace and noose
but the weapon Skandamata brings is her son,
Skanda, Murrugan, Kartikeya,
his six heads spreading like a peacock’s tail.
He was born to slay the invincible demon
who turned the world from the way of balance.
The gods could not defeat this demon with words or war
but the child struck with his spear and the demon fell.
Praise to the son who saved the gods!
Praise to Padamasani who meditates in peace.
Oh Skandamata, warrior’s mother,
give us courage,
protect us from violence,
grant us the grace of confidence
and strike our enemies down.
Om Devi Skandamatayai Namah.

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Navaratri Day 4: Creation

Jonoikobangali, Kushmanda Sanghasri 2010 Arnab Dutta, CC BY-SA 3.0. From Wikimedia.

In the darkness where there was nothing
Kushmanda’s smile lit the fire of life,
the little cosmic egg of the universe.
She is the power in the sun, she is the sun.
She is the power in the world, she is the world.
She is the power in light, she is the light.
Her infinite energy manifests in three forms:
Mahakali the terrifying,
Mahalakshmi the fierce,
Mahasaraswati the benevolent.
Kushmanda the creator
grant us the power to create the practice
that creates ourselves.
Om Devi Kushmandayai Namaha.

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Navaratri Day 3: Power

By CodePanda from Wikimedia Commons

She comes on a tiger, brilliant as the moon,
Chandraghanta, radiant with rage,
sounding the terrible roar of her bell.
Each ring destroys
the thoughts that obsess us
the fears that possess us
the pains that oppress us,
they flash and are gone.
Only peace remains,
radiant as the moon.
Om Devi Chandraghantayai Namah.

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Navaratri Day 2: The Guide

She comes quietly, serene in her focus,
Charini, the female practitioner,
Bramani, devoted to the knowledge of the cosmos,
counting the beads, fixed on meditation,
bearing the holy water which nourishes the world,
the sacred amrita that sustains the tantrika.
Brahmacharini guide us,
lead us to the knowledge that frees us,
grant us a sip of the nectar that enlightens us.
Om Devi Brahmacharinyai Namah.

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Navaratri Day 1: The Daughter Returns

Devi Shailaputri, by Jonoikobangali, from WikMedia

Devi Shailaputri, by Jonoikobangali, from WikMedia

Devi Shailaputri, by Jonoikobangali, from WikMedia

Look, Shailaputri is returning!
Come see, the daughter has arrived.
Riding to the mountain on a snow-white bull
carrying a weapon and a flower in her hands.
How joyful is her homecoming!
All the mothers and grandmothers, daughters and sisters
crowd around to press food and flowers on her
while the fathers and brothers and sons twirl in her honor.
Later they will dance and feast through the night.

Navaratri calls us home,
all the girls and women, boys and men,
drawn to the Mountain Mother, the Great Goddess,
Devi, Shri, Ma,
Maha Durga, Maha Lakshmi, Maha Saraswati,
fierce, kind, sublime,
teaching us three times three ways to know and love Her.
Om Devi Shailputryai Namah.