Durga Puja 2018 is Knocking at the Door. And All the Kolkatans eagerly waiting for the day when they can Start their Shopping. Pandal Hopping will also be Started after Few Days with Near and Dear Ones, Family Members. All in all, Durga Puja 2018 Dates are the perfect example of Unity & United Family, Friends together.
Here’s the Durga Puja Dates in Our very own Durga Puja 2018 Bangla Calendar:
|Name of Events||Day||Date of Events||Remarks|
|Mahalaya 2017||Tuesday||19 September 2017||Mahalaya marks the beggining of Durga Puja.|
|Maha Panchami 2017||Monday||25 September 2017||Maha Panchami is day that Unofficially marks the commencement of the Durga Puja.|
|Maha Sasthi 2017||Tuesday||26 September 2017||Maha Shashti is the day of the unveiling of Goddess Durga|
|Maha Saptami 2017||Wednesday||27 September 2017||Durga Puja Officially Starts from Maha Saptami|
|Maha Ashtami 2017||Thursday||28 September 2017||Maha Ashtami is the time when Kolkatans start pandalhopping.|
|Maha Nabami 2017||Friday||29 September 2017||All the rituals start from House Wives before the last day called Maha Nabami|
|Bijaya Dashami 2017||Saturday||30 September 2017||Bijaya Dashami is the Day when Maa Durga Returns to her Place.|
Idols and Pandals
This money goes into commissioning the gigantic idols of Durga, her children and Mahishasur that are created in a place called Kumartuli which is internationally famous for its artisans who make magnificent idols out of mud and clay.
The next big expenditure is the construction of theme-based magnificent “pandals” or architectural outdoor canopies where the idols are kept. These canopies or “pandals” are temporary structures erected from bamboos and fibre glass.
Within these lights and chandeliers are fitted and the deity is housed upon a huge platform visible from miles beyond. Nowadays theme-based “pandals” on Harry Potter, monuments of the world, Doraemon, etc. are the rage and competitions called “Sharadiya Saamman” are organised by Asian Paints to give away the grand prize to the committee with the most creative and innovative puja pandal.
First Day of Durga Puja as Mahalaya
Mahalaya is considered to be the first day of Durga Puja, when Goddess Durga, the embodiment of feminine power and the victory of good over evil, is invited to descend to Earth by chanting hymns and singing mantras. Mahalaya Tarpan in Ganges held every year, marks the beginning of Durga Puja 2018 all over the world. For Bengalies in Mahalaya pitri paksha ends, Devi Paksha begins. On the same day, people go to the holy Ganges to do Tarpan, that is pay respect to the departed souls of father and ancestors. Different types of Tarpans are done on the day including pitri tarpan, matri tarpan, deb tarpan, etc.
Mahalaya is a homecoming. According to the Hindu mythology, Goddess Durga who was married to Lord Siva returns to her paternal residence during the Puja, and this is the preparation for the welcome of the diving homecoming
Mahalaya marks the start of the ‘Devi-Paksha’ and the end of the ‘Pitri-Paksha’. The traditional six day countdown to Maha-saptami starts from Mahalaya. Goddess Durga visits the earth for only four days but seven days prior to the Pujas, starts the Mahalaya. It heralds the advent of Durga, the goddess of supreme power. It’s a kind of invocation or invitation to the mother goddess to descend on earth – “Jago Tumi Jago“.
Goddess Durga starts her journey towards earth on the day of Mahalaya, i.e. on the first day of the Devi-Paksha. This day bears immense significance for the Bengalis. According to Puranas, King Suratha used to worship goddess Durga in spring. Thus Durga Puja was also known as Basanti Puja. But Rama advanced the Puja and worshiped Durga in Autumn and that is why it is known as ‘Akal Bodhon‘ or untimely worship. Rama is said to have performed Durga Puja just before he set for Lanka to rescue Sita from Ravana. It was considered untimely since Puja is performed when the Gods and Goddesses are awake (Uttarayan period) and not held when the Gods and Goddesses are in slumber (Dakshinayan Period). The eye is given to the idol of Devi Durga on this auspicious day.
The last five days of the festival are most important. They are respectively called “Shashthi”, Saptami”. “Ashtami”, “Nabami” and “Dashami”. Each of these days has a special puja and the evening has what is called “sandhi pujo.” The air is filled with the sound of “Dhakis of Durga Puja” or drummers playing a special drum and the priests chanting the holy mantras.
There is a special dance called “dhunuchi naach” with small containers of burning and fragrant coal and incense to perform the rituals before the goddess. It is believed that the more idols people visit, the more the goddess will be pleased to grant blessings upon the people.
So all over the state people visit various idols from early morning till late at night and call this “thakur darshan” or seeking the blessings of the deity.
The Final Day of Durga Puja means Bijoya Dashami
The entire atmosphere is festive, happy and spiritual. The concept is that Maa Durga has visited her parental home on Earth and on the tenth day or Dashami, she will be returned to the oceans to be united with her imperial consort Shiva.
That is why the idol is dressed in red and adorned with sindoor which is called “shringaar” or “boron” and then carried off for immersion which is called “visarjan”.
Bijoya Dashami has it’s own importance in this religious Festival. Bijoya means Victory in Bengali. This day is celebrated with mixed feelings, both with joy and sorrow. People are happy because they celebrate this day as Victory Day of Devi Durga and at the same time they are sad because it is the last day of the celebration. There is big rally from every Puja Pandal which carries the Devi Durga Statue to the river side for Visarjan. It is like a custom in India to have Jalopies (one Indian sweet) during the day of Bijoya Dashami. People wish each other Subho Bijoya (Happy Bijoya). Younger people touch the feet of elders and seek blessings and elders covey their love to younger ones.
How Durga Aarti can bring you Luck?
Without festivals India actually incomplete. India has more and more festivals. This all festivals are related with aarti because in India without aarti not a single hindu cultural festival is complete. In main festivals of India are Diwali, Durga puja & Navratri, Holi. These are the biggest and main festival of India. Diwali is festival of light, Holi is festival of color and the Durga puja is festival of aarti, because this festival celebration big part is aarti. Durga puja and Navratri is 10 day festivals its end day called Dussera or Vijaya Dashmi. Its start from pratipada and dashmi. First day of Durga Puja started with Kalash Sthapana and aarti. In that time 5 time aarti is important for every household and pandal. Mostly dhoop, deep, conch water, flower and hand fan aarti very popular in durgapuja time. Nine days of navratri every day aarti perform with very respectfully for Maa Durga. In bengali culture Maha Ashtami (8th day of the festival) aarti is very important. This day every bengali people pray for their peaceful upcoming year. Dhunuchi aarti is very popular cultural dance and also aarti are very important part of Durga puja. Diwali is festival of light that day also Indian every house celebrate Diwali with worship of laxmi with dhoop and deep aarti, but Navratri & Durga puja is festival or aarti. Mostly east and north part of India dhoop and deep aarti very popular this time. It is always perform as very traditional way. Dhunuchi aarti is very famous this festival and also Durga Puja Sandhya Aarti very famous. Everyone wait for this Festival for celebrate with Aarti and feel happy for the full year. This time big Pancha-Pradeep and Dhunuchi Aarti very popular part of Durga puja and Navratri.
Kolkata is gearing up for Durga Puja Celebration. That’s why these hand-pulled rickshaws wore a festive look to participate in the 80-year-old Kashi Bose Durga puja event. Part of Kolkata’s colonial heritage, these rickshaws have got decked in cloth ruffles, tassels and rainbow-hued wheel spokes at the cost of Rs. 1.35 lakh. They will be plying across the city till October 19. Interestingly, foreigners can ride these rickshaws for free during the festive period.