The eight day of the Navaratri festival is marked by the sacred worship of Goddess Mahagauri – the eighth representation of Goddess Durga. Mahagauri stands for extremely fair – someone who is pure and sparkling. Appropriately named, the skin of Goddess Mahagauri is white in color. This holy night is also celebrated as ‘Ashtami’.
The strength and prowess of this Goddess extends to all those who humbly look for her blessings; they are filled with the grace that helps them achieve their wishes and relieves them of all pain and affliction. Goddess Mahagauri fights all evil of the past, present and future. She is calm, loving and patient.
Goddess Mahagauri’s blessings are many fold. She helps prolong the life span of the spouse, helps those seeking life partners, imbibes good qualities in chosen life partners and keeps enemies and evil presences at bay. One can also pray for energy and sexual vitality.
Goddess Mahagauri wished to be married to Lord Shiva. She undertook austere penance and sacrifice for thousands of years, beyond the hills of the Himalayas. Due to being in one position for such a long time, she was smeared with dirt and dust had settled on her body. She lacked lusture.
This is when Lord Shiva washed her with the pure waters of river Ganga. Goddess Mahagauri begins gleaming in a white glow. By the grace of Lord Shiva, her beauty is returned.
Goddess Mahagauri has the innocence of a child and adorns a white and green attire. She has 4 hands and 3 sets of eyes. In one of her hands she holds a ‘Trishul’ – a trident, and in another a drum. She is seen atop a large lotus. Her vessel is a mighty and graceful bull.
Goddess Mahagauri is fond of the Custard apple, so offering it to her during the puja is advised. This fruit has to be placed in front of her in the morning alongwith a lighted lamp, and by dusk everyone should eat a piece of itas it includes her blessings. Other offerings include flowers especially jasmines and clothes.
Haldi-kumkum and pieces of raw coconut are offered to all married ladies and money/eatables are distributed amongst single and younger girls.
ॐ देवी महागौर्यै नमः॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु मां गौरी रूपेण संस्थिता।
नमस्तवस्यैु नमस्तणस्यैप नमस्तौस्यै् नमो नम:।।
If your life is filled with planetary problems and troubles, then opt for getting the Hanuman Puja done with a pure heart as quickly as possible. All the planetary agitations and unrest will be over.