Navratri Day 7 (Saptami Tithi) observes the worship of Goddess Kalaratri as well as Goddess Saraswati. This day people also arrange the Utsava Puja. On the seventh day of Navratri Goddess Kalaratri is worshipped. She is considered to be the most ferocious avatar of NavDurga and is known for destroying ignorance and removing darkness from the universe. On Chatra Navaratri 2019, Maa Kalaratri puja falls on Friday, April 12.
Maha Saptami marks the major day of rituals for the goddess of power. Mythology says that after a vigorous fight of 9 days the Goddess over powered the most treacherous demon in history – Mahisasura. Saptami was the day when the Goddess commenced the war with the buffalo demon and killed him on 10th, that is on Vijaya dashami.
During the devastation created by the demons Shumbha and Nishumbha Goddess Parvati took the avatar of Kalaratri Devi. It is said that these two demons invaded the Devlok that is the abode of the Demi Gods. After getting frustrated the Demi Gods prayed Goddess Parvati to help them defeat the asuras. It is then when Kalaratri avatar was created.
This avatar is depicted as a destructive form of the Goddess. She can be seen riding a dark black donkey. Her complexion is dark black and she has four hands. The positioning of her hands are in abhaya and varada mudra and she carries sword and an iron hook in her left hands.It is said that she licked the blood of demon Rakta Beeja, who had the potential to create more demons from his own blood. Because of the powers she possesses, she is also referred as Goddess Shubhankari.
According to legend, Dasta Shumbha-Nishumbha and Raktabeej had made a stroke in all the three states. Worried by this, all the goddesses went to Shiva ji. Shiva asked the goddess Parvati to kill the demons and protect their devotees. Considering Shiva Ji, Parvati ji assumed the form of Durga and killed Shumbha-Nishumbha. But as soon as Durga killed the bloodbath, the blood released from her body produced millions of raktabeej. Seeing this, Durga ji made Kalaratri from its fast. After this, when Durga killed the raktabeej, Kalaratri filled his blood in his face and slaughtered his bloodbase after cutting his throat.
Bathing Navapatrika: This day, tithi, and timings are considered to be very auspicious to worship the nine planets. People worship the nine planets representing banana, pomegranate, turmeric, jayanti, ashoke, bel, arum plant, colacassia and paddy which are tied together and taken to the river Ganges at pre-dawn for bathing. The puja starts after that. You must be wondering on why the nine planets? During the war, Devi Durga created ‘Ashtanayika’ who were the eight war partners. These eight goddess and Devi herself symbolized “NavDurga”. These forms helped fight the demon.
Rituals for Goddess Saraswati: Normally in certain southern parts of India, mainly in Kerala, Goddess Durga is worshipped as Goddess Saraswati on the seventh day of Maha Saptami. They keep books and music instruments before her and pray for insight and knowledge.
Maha Snan: A beautiful ritual like this will fill your heart with satisfaction. A mirror is placed with the reflection of Goddess Durga. This mirror is given the ritualistic bath which is known as Maha Snan.
Prana Pratishtha: Prana pratishta forms one of the major rituals on Saptami. A pot with holy water with a bunch of five mango leaves and a coconut is placed in front of the deity. Divine chants and hymns are sung to invoke the Goddess in the deity.
This Goddess is worshiped on the 7th day of Navratri. The tithi prevailing is Saptami tithi. On chaitra navratri 2019, Maa Kalaratri puja falls on Friday, April 12. This Goddess has different rites to be followed. Sometimes tantric method is followed where wine or blood is offered to the deity and some people follow certain daily rites performed while praying.
Must read: Navratri mantras for all nine days
Om Devi Kalaratryai Namah.
Ekaveni Japakarnapura Nagna Kharasthita,
Lamboshthi Karnikakarni Tailabhyakta Sharirini.
Vardhana Murdhadhwaja Krishna Kalaratrirbhayankari.
Ya Devi Sarvabhuteshu Ma Kalaratri Rupena Samsthita,
Namastasyai Namastasyai Namastasyai Namo Namah.
Karalavandana Ghoram Muktakeshi Chaturbhujam,
Kalaratrim Karalimka Divyam Vidyutamala Vibhushitam.
Divyam Lauhavajra Khadga Vamoghordhva Karambujam,
Abhayam Varadam Chaiva Dakshinodhvaghah Parnikam Mam.
Mahamegha Prabham Shyamam Taksha Chaiva Gardabharudha,
Ghoradamsha Karalasyam Pinonnata Payodharam.
Sukha Prasanna Vadana Smeranna Saroruham,
Evam Sachiyantayet Kalaratrim Sarvakam Samriddhidam.
Him Kalaratri ShrimKarali Cha Klim Kalyani Kalawati,
Kalamata Kalidarpadhni Kamadisha Kupanvita.
Kumatighni Kulinartinashini Kula Kamini.
Klim Hrim Shrim Mantrvarnena Kalakantakaghatini,
Kripamayi Kripadhara Kripapara Kripagama.