The Fourth day of Navratri – Goddess Durga as Devi Kushmanda

Indian Astrology | 17-Mar-2024

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We worship Durga Maa and her nine forms during the auspicious nine days of Navaratri. It is a popular Hindu festival when people show their faith and devotion towards the Goddess. The celebration is particularly popular in India and Nepal. People should gain insight into the power, significance, and real essence of the Navdurga. Devotees believe paying homage to the Devis brings wish fulfilment and prosperity in life. Here, we will explain in detail the different forms of the Goddess. This article will discuss the fourth form or incarnation of Goddess Durga- Devi Kushmanda.

 

Devi Kushmanda - description as per scriptures

 

The fourth form of Goddess Durga is known as Devi Kushmanda. According to popular belief, she created the world by merely smiling divinely. She is deeply revered in Kalikula traditions. We can understand the essence of the fourth form of Maa Durga by breaking down her name: "Ku" means "a small", "Ushma" means "warmness" or "energy", and "Anda" means "cosmic egg".

The worship of Devi Kushmanda is believed to enhance health and confer wealth and power. In the various depictions of Goddess Kushmanda, we can see her with eight hands, earning her another name - Ashtabhuja Devi. Chanting her name brings Siddhis and Niddhis, which means all kinds of wisdom and wealth, to the worshipper. The Goddess is also known by other names, such as Surya Mandala Antarvardhini, which means the one who lives in the centre of the Sun, Surya Mandala. The Goddess symbolizes that Devi Shakti is central to the radiance of the Sun, who lives in the mandala to enliven her creation.

 

Read Also: - Chaitra Navratri 2024: A Complete Guide

 

Devi Kushmanda - A brief overview

 

According to ancient scriptures, Devi Kushmanda created the entire universe, also known as Brahmanda, by simply smiling. She is fond of the sacrifice of the white pumpkin, also known as Kushmanda. Due to her association with the pumpkin and the universe, she is popularly known as Goddess Kushmanda.

The Sun is the ultimate source of energy and life on Earth, and Goddess Kushmanda herself is the power of the Sun. She resides in the mandala or core of the Sun and is, therefore, responsible for the energy and radiance of Surya Dev. As a Shakti, her power creates balance in the world and gives life to all living beings. She allows or grants power to the Sun to spread light and life through its rays.

 

Kundalini and Goddess Kushmanda

 

Goddess Kushmanda is often associated with the Anahata chakra, which is believed to be located in the centre of the chest, near the heart. In astrology, the Sun is associated with the heart, and the goddess is also associated with the Sun. This chakra is associated with love, compassion, and balance.

As the divine energy of Goddess Kushmanda flows through the Anahata chakra, it is said to awaken feelings of love, kindness, and harmony within individuals. Her presence in this chakra is believed to bring about a sense of connection with others and the universe.

By activating the Anahata chakra with Goddess Kushmanda's energy, individuals may experience a deep sense of inner peace, empathy, and understanding. This connection to the heart centre allows people to experience love and compassion for themselves and others, promoting unity and togetherness with all living beings.

Goddess Kushmanda's association with the Anahata chakra symbolizes her role in nurturing love, compassion, and harmony within the hearts of those who worship her, leading them towards spiritual growth and enlightenment.

 

Iconography

 

Devi Kushmanda is a peaceful depiction of Devi Parvati. In many depictions, she is shown with eight to ten hands, carrying weapons such as a trident, sword, discus, hook, bow, arrow, mace, and two jars containing nectar (Amrit) and other blood. She is also portrayed with an Abhayamudra, a hand gesture through which she blesses all her devotees. She is depicted as riding a lion, symbolising power, speed, and energy. Kushmanda Maa is often described as having three eyes, pleasing facial expressions and a smile.

 

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Story of Devi Kushmanda

 

According to Shaivagams, after the defeat of Jatukasura at the hands of Devi Chandraghanta, two demons named Mali and Sumali undertook great penance to please Lord Shiva. These demons were the sons of a powerful and influential demon warrior named Sukesh. Their penance was impressive and harsh, causing their bodies to emit a glowing effect due to their spiritual growth. The positive ions started emitting from their bodies, illuminating the Earth with their glow.

Anxious about the constantly increasing illumination on the Earth, Suryadev wanted to know why. He could not resist and wished to check which source was causing this new glow. However, according to the laws of nature, celestial bodies were not allowed to leave their place. But Suryadev was so curious that he immediately moved from his place in the solar system to search for the new glowing bodies on the Earth. Unfortunately, this proved to be fatal to the universe. Ignoring everything, Suryadev was moving closer towards the demon brothers. Mali and Sumali were so engrossed in their meditation that they couldn't realize the increasing heat towards them as the Sun moved closer. As the Sun got very close, the demon brothers burnt and turned to ashes.

Shiva became very angry at the Sun's action and wanted to punish Suryadev. He attacked Suryadev with his trident, which made him fall unconscious on the ground. As a result, darkness spread all over, making the universe visible to the naked eye. The gravitational force weakened, causing a complete imbalance in the universe. The planets, stars, and other celestial bodies lost balance.

Rishi Kashyapa, the father of Sun, became extremely worried when he saw his son lying unconscious on the ground. He was so upset that he cursed Lord Shiva for killing his son, Suryasdev. As a result, he prophesied that Lord Shiva would also lose his son one day. The curse frightened Lord Shiva and ran to Devi Parvati for help. He explained that she is the ultimate power, the source of all energy and the mother of the universe. She is the essence of nature and creation.

Parvati ascended to the place where Suryadev was lying unconscious. She then formed a spherical body of fire and light with her fierceness, now known as the present Sun. Devi Parvati emerged from that fireball, blooming like an immortal universal beauty.

Later, Sukesh and Rishi Kashyap arrived at the place. Sukesh was in deep pain and grief over the loss of his sons. Rishi Kashyap had already cursed Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva requested that both Sukesh and Rishi Kashyap meet Devi Parvati to resolve the situation. Rishi Kashyap and Devi Aditi went to Devi Parvati to bring Suryadev back to life. Devi Parvati then presented two pots. She asked them both to fill one pot with their blood. Rishi Kashyap, using his divine powers, took the blood from both of their bodies and filled the pot with it. As soon as the pot was filled with blood, the other pot automatically filled with elixir, Amrit.

Devi Parvati requested Rishi Kashyap to pour both Amrit (nectar) and blood into the mouth of Suryadev (the Sun God). In exchange for this favour, she asked Rishi Kashyap to bless her with a child who would be the greatest and finest God in the entire universe.

Sukesh and his wife Devavati also approached Devi Parvati with the ashes of Mali and Sumali. Devi Parvati blessed them with a divine egg placed in Devavati's womb. The children born from the egg were demons, but Devi Parvati was named Kushmanda for her good deeds. Kushmanda is derived from three words: Ku, which means little; Ushma, which means heat; and anda, which refers to an egg-like round structure.

Devi Kushmanda is a powerful goddess who is said to live in the Sun's core and guide the Sun God, Surya. Suryadev requested her presence in the Suryasan in Surya mandala, and her luminosity gives the Sun its brightness.

 

Lucky colour

 

Devi Kushmanda lives inside the core of the Sun and is responsible for its brightness and life-giving abilities. The colour associated with the goddess is orange. It is considered auspicious to wear orange clothing while worshipping her. Also, one should offer orange-coloured articles to Devi Kushmanda on the fourth day of Chaitra Navratri.

 

Mantra

 

Om Kushmandayaye Namaha

 

Temples

 

The famous Kushmanda Mata temple are located in Durga Kund, Varanasi and Ghatampur, Uttar Pradesh.