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ॐ देवी चन्द्रघण्टायै नमः॥
Every day of the auspicious nine days of Chaitra Navratri are dedicated to various forms of Ma Durga. Goddess Chandraghanta is worshiped on the third day of Navratri. She is also also known as Chandika.
“Chandra” means moon and “Ghanta” means bell. Ma Chandraghanta adorns a bell shaped moon on her head, thus the name. After the hard penance done by Ma Parvati, Lord Shiva promises to marry her. On an auspicious occasion, marriage procession of Lord Shiva reaches palace of Himavaan. The procession is full of ghosts, goblins, gods, sages, aghoris and pretas. Lord Shiva himself is covered in ashes, wearing tiger skin as the only cloth and has huge snake around his neck. Seeing such a terrifying image, mother of Ma Parvati; Maina Devi faints due to fear. Ma Parvati understands that Lord Shiva should not feel insulted, so takes up the form of Chandraghanta. Ma Parvati then asks Lord Shiva to take up a handsome charming form, so that her parents can accept him as son-in-law. Lord Shiva takes up a form of a prince adorned with jewels. Shakti Ma Parvati’s marriage with Lord Shiva then commences.
Ma Chandraghanta has ten arms. She carries Trishul, Gada, Sword and Kamandalu in her four left hands and keeps the fifth left hand in Varada Mudra. She carries lotus flower, Arrow, Dhanush and Japa Mala in her four right hands and keeps the fifth right hand in Abhaya Mudra. Her complexion is golden and her vehicle is a tiger. Ma Chandraghanta is ever ready to fight demons who pester and harass humans.
The third day of Navratri (this year it is merged in second day itself creating a grand confluence of Shaktis) and worship of Ma Chandraghanta are of utmost importance. Sadhak can have many super natural experiences while worshiping Ma Chandraghanta. He/She may hear divine sounds and smell divine fragrances. A Sadhak should always be in protection and be aware. By the grace of Ma Chandraghanta all bad karmas and obstacles are dissolved. As her vehicle tiger, a Sadhak also become fearless and mighty. Many times a Sadhak may hear sound of bell during his Sadhana. The sound of bell wards off negativity from the environment. The sound of the bell of Ma Chandraghanta is so strong that demons die jut by hearing it. Although this swaroop of Ma is always ready to kill demons adorned with so many weapons but still when a Sadhak sees her feels peace and bliss within his being.
Ma Chandraghanta is Manipura Shakti. Manipura (Solar Plexus) Chakra is also the abode of Fire Element. So on the third day of Navratri, Tattva Shakti Sadhak and Sadhika should first make Sankalpam and Guru Vandana and proceed to Agni Tattva Sadhana. Sadhak or Sadhika should always contemplate on the form of Ma Chandrghanta while doing his Sadhana during four navaratris for extra-benefits (not on other days). By doing this Sadhana, Sadhak becomes fearless and at the same time develops humility and amiability. A glow develops in the face, eyes and whole body of the Sadhak. Sadhak of Ma Chandraghanta develops a soft and soothing voice and who ever comes in contact with them feels peace and joy. A divine light develops within and around the body of the Sadhak.
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु माँ चन्द्रघण्टा रूपेण संस्थिता। नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः॥
I bow down at the lotus feet of my Guru and Goddess and pray. “May you receive all the divine grace from Goddess in this New Year.”
– Ma Shakti Devpriya Anand Nath