What is Dussehra?
Hindus celebrate Dussehra, also known as Dasara or Vijayadashami, as the victory of Ram. A Vishnu avatar, over the ten-headed demon king Ravana, who kidnapped Rama’s bride, Sita. The terms dasha (“ten”) and Hara (“defeat”) in Sanskrit are the sources of the festival’s name.
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Dussehra celebrates the triumph of good over evil. It is observed on the tenth day of Ashvina (September–October), the seventh month of the Hindu calendar, at the time of the full moon, often known as the “bright fortnight” (Shukl paksha).
The nine-day Navratri festival comes to an end on Dussehra, which also falls on the tenth day of the Durga Puja holiday. Many people start getting ready for Diwali, which comes 20 days after Dussehra.
The festival of Dussehra is observed with tremendous zeal and grandeur. It includes Ram Lila, a grand theatrical presentation of Rama’s life narrative, which is performed in North India. In open fields at night, effigies of Ravana—often combined with those of Meghnatha, Ravana’s son, and Kumbhkarana, Ravana’s brother—are lit on fire.
Why is Dussehra a holiday?
India is a country with many distinct cultures and customs. So the celebration of Dussehra is marked in many ways. Dussehra is celebrated in the eastern and southern states. A commemoration of Goddess Durga’s triumph over the wicked demon Mahishasura.
On the other hand, most northern and western states of India celebrate Dussehra as Lord Rama’s triumph over Ravana. It starts on the first day of Navratri and lasts for nine days. Rama, the eldest son of King Dasharatha, was to be crowned as the ruler of Ayodhya long ago.
The choice was well received across the kingdom, and everyone was looking forward to the coronation event.
Queen Kaikeyi Demands Her Two Wishes
But Queen Kaikeyi wanted her son Bharata to rule Ayodhya.
She, therefore, makes use of two blessings that King Dashratha gave her years ago on the eve of the event.
King Dashratha was forced to grant her the wishes she requested, including banishing Rama for fourteen years to the wilderness and crowning Bharata as King of Ayodhya.
As a result, Lord Rama, his wife Sita, and his brother Lakshmana were all exiled.
A Rakshasi named Surpanakha tries to seduce the two brothers in their final year of exile.
Sita Was Kidnaps By Ravana
IToexact revenge for his sister’s humiliation, Ravana decides to kidnap Sita.
He kidnaps Sita and takes her to his realm, where he proposes to her.
Due to her devotion to Lord Rama, Sita declines.
A fierce fight breaks out between the forces of Lord Rama and Ravana.
They all return to Ayodhya once their exile is finished, and Lord Rama is at last installed as the city’s ruler.
The Importance of Dusshera
The holiday of Dussehra celebrates the triumph of virtue over evil. This festival represents the exposure of wrongdoings from some of the other days. Truth and righteousness always triumph, no matter what dark forces try to drive you. Additionally, Dussehra is seen as a good day to make fresh investments or launch new enterprises. On this day, tiny children are admitted to schools in various parts of South India.
What is the Purpose of Celebrating Vijaya Dashami After Navratri?
Dussehra, also called Vijaya Dashmi, is one of the most significant and important festivals observed in India.
Just after the nine-day Navratri celebration, which is observed and celebrated according to the Hindu calendar, comes Dussehra.
It generally occurs in the month of Ashvin, or Ashvina, and symbolizes the victory of good over evil.
According to Hindu mythology, Dussehra is observed after Navratri because it is said that Lord Ram worshipped Goddess Durga on the instruction of Lord Vishnu before setting out on his mission to vanquish Ravana.
The celebration commemorates Lord Ram’s triumph over Ravana, ruler of Lanka (the 10-headed demon).
On Dussehra, Lord Rama conquered Ravana, also known as Dashmukha, after a protracted conflict.
On this day, Goddess Durga also slew Mahishasura, the demon king with a head like a buffalo.
The goddess’ triumph over evil is also remembered via this ceremony.
North India celebrates Dussehra by staging a theatrical production of the Ramayana known as Ramleela.
As part of the festivities, the followers of Lord Ram also burn enormous effigies of Ravana, Kumbhakarana, and Meghanada.
You Need to Know About the Dussehra Rituals and Facts
As was previously noted, Dussehra, also known as Vijayadashami, has a variety of origin myths, and as a result, the holiday is observed in varied ways throughout India.
For instance, Dussehra is a festival honoring Lord Rama that is observed in the majority of North or Western Indian states.
On the other hand, the Hindu Goddess of education and the arts, Maa Saraswati, is honored in many South Indian locations where the festival is held.
People fast and worship the nine forms of Goddess Durga during the nine days of Navratras leading up to Dussehra or Vijayadashami in Western India, particularly in Gujarat.
Even while the celebration goes by many names, its fundamental meaning—the triumph of virtue over evil and the establishment of Dharma over Adharma—remains the same.
The Legend Surrounding the Holiday of Dussehra Relates to Lord Rama.
A Hindu legend describes Ravana as the demon ruler of Lanka, a region to the south of India, who lusted after Sita, Lord Rama’s bride. Sita was taken captive by Ravana and kept in his realm of Lanka. With the aid of his brother Lakshman and Lord Hanuman, Lord Rama invaded Lanka with an army of monkeys and, on the tenth day of the battle, killed Ravana.
The first nine days are known as Navratri, and the tenth, on which Ravana is slain, is known as Dussehra. The demon Ravana’s effigies are burned to mark the end of the Navratri celebration. The execution of Ravana represents the victory of good over evil
The History Of The Vijayadashmi Celebration As It Relates To Goddess Durga
- The eastern and north-eastern regions of India do not fast during Durga Puja. Throughout the nine days of Navratri, people pray to the Goddess while playing the dandiya and Garba. One of the most well-known Indian holidays is Dussehra, also known as Vijayadashami or Bijoya (by Bengalis).
Huge, vibrant effigies of Ravana, his brother Kumbhakaran, son Meghanada, and other members of the family. They are lit on fire in various locations around northern India. People take part in and enjoy the event. Another way the Dussehra holiday is honored is by staging the Ram Lila, a theatrical production of Rama’s life stories.
In West Bengal, Bihar, and Odisha, this event is observed after Durga Puja. Bengalis perform traditional melodies and submerge Goddess Durga statues in sources of water. The state government of Himachal Pradesh has designated the Vijayadashami celebration in Kullu as an international event.