Durga Puja starts with Mahalaya. While ‘Shraddh’ ends with Mahalaya, it is believed that on this day itself Goddess Durga comes to earth from Kailash Parvat and stays here for the next 10 days. This year, ‘Sarva Pitra Amavsya’ and Mahalaya falls on October 6, which is Wednesday. On the day of Mahalaya, only sculptors make Goddess Durga’s eyes and fill colour in them, they also perform a special puja before this. After Mahalaya, only final touches are done on Goddess Durga’s idol and they grace the Pandals.
As per Hindu Shastra, Durga Puja is done in Shukla Paksh of Ashwin month. This time, Durga Puja is starting on October 11 and will end on October 15 with Dashmi or Dusshera. As per the beliefs, Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh created Maa Durga to destroy tyrant demon Mahishasur. The Asura had a boon that no Devta or human will be able to kill him. After receiving such a boon, Mahishasur became the king of demons and he attacked the Devtas. The Devtas lost the war and Devlok came under the rule of Mahishasur. To save themselves from the Mahishasur, all the Devtas with Lord Vishnu worshipped Adi Shakti.
During this, a divine light came out of the bodies of all the Devtas which took the shape of Goddess Durga. Decorated with weapons Goddess Durga fought a gruesome war with Mahishasur for nine days and then killed him on the 10th day. Maa Durga is considered the goddess of power. Although Mahalaya is the main festival for Bengalese, it is celebrated in the entire country. People who believe in Maa Durga wait for this day the entire year. It marks the beginning of Navratri and Durga Puja. Their belief is that Goddess Durga was invocated on Mahalaya to kill Mahishasur. It is said that on Mahalaya Amavasya morning, first ancestors are given farewell and then in the evening Maa Durga comes to earth and stays here to bless people.
Mahalaya is also the last day of Pitra Paksh hence is also called Sarva Pitra Amavasya. On this day, all the ancestors are remembered and offered ‘Tarpan’ in order to make their souls happy.
(Disclaimer- The information given in the article is based on general information. News 18 does not confirm them. contact the respective experts before applying them.)