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Chandraghanta

maa-chandra-ghanta1

On the third day of Navratri, Shakti is worshipped in the form of Chandraghanta (Chandra=Moon, ghanta=bell), who is the married form of the Goddess Parvati (after marrying Shiva, Parvati started adorning Her head with a half moon in the shape of a bell, hence the origin of Her name). As Yogi Ananda Saraswathi writes:

In meditation, as soon as the sadhak (someone who follows a way of life in order to achieve Nirvana) invokes her, her bell immediately become active and starts ringing to protect the devotee under her shelter. The crescent moon is symbolic of feminine energy. It is also associated with clairvoyance and knowing without thinking. The crescent also represents illumination,new beginnings and making dreams a reality. It is connected to rebirths and how our true essence really is immortal. That is why she is called ‘Chandraghanta’. Her ornaments are rich and signify material comfort.

Chandraghanta’s mount is a tigress and is depicted with ten arms. She holds a trishul (trident), gada (a blunt mace/club), sword, and kamandal (an oblong water pot carried by ascetics) in her four left hands and keeps the fifth left hand in the Varada Mudra positition (symbolises the giving of blessings). In Her right hands She carries the lotus flower (symbolising blooming above the murk to achieve enlightenment), dhanush (bow), arrow, and Japa mala (prayer beads) while keeping Her fifth hand in the Abhaya Mudra position (indicates for the devotee to not fear and a symbol of protection). She governs the planet Venus.

Chandraghanta is associated with the chakra Manipura (Mani=pearl, jewel, pura=place, city), which is the first chakra that has emerged into the conscious (Muladhara chakra is located in the unconscious and Swadhistana chakra is in the subconscious) and is located at the solar plexus. Chandraghanta is worshipped for peace, tranquility, and prosperity in life. She is the Goddess of bravery and possesses great power which aids Her in battles against demons and forces of darkness. As written by Miss Sanchitta Chowdhury:

Goddess Chandraghanta is the representation of Supreme bliss and knowledge. It is said that by Her blessings, all the sins, sufferings, bad energies etc are eliminated from Her devotees’ life. By riding a tiger She inspires Her devotees to be fearless. By worshipping Goddess Chandraghanta one gets rid of all the worldly sorrows and attains supreme spiritual bliss.
Her mantra is:
Pindaj Pravara Rudha Chand Kopastra Keyurta
Prasadam Tanute Maham Chandra Ghanteti Vishruta
Which in English means:
O Goddess Chandraghanta, who rides on Tiger, angry on enemies, holds many weapons in ten hands, be propitious to me.

For purposes of pronunciation, I have included a link to the spoken mantra (The mantra itself lasts for the first 35 seconds of this video, after which a speaker gives a lecture in Hindi).

Resources:

http://hinduism.about.com/od/godsgoddesses/ss/navadurga_4.htm

http://experiencehinduism.com/festivals/navratri-third-day-third-form-durga-chandraghanta

http://www.boldsky.com/yoga-spirituality/faith-mysticism/2013/story-of-devi-chandraghanta-navratri-035643.html

http://www.astrosage.com/festival/navratri/devi-chandraghanta.asp

http://rampuri.com/navdurga-navratri/

http://www.chakras.net/energy-centers/manipura

http://vedicgoddess.weebly.com/3/post/2012/08/chandraghanta-devi.html

http://www.drikpanchang.com/hindu-goddesses/parvati/durga/navdurga-chandraghanta.html

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