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Why is Dussehra Also Called Vijayadashami? Legend and Story Related to the Festival

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DUSSEHRA 2022: Navratri has started and people are all out celebrating the with full grandeur and religious fervour. Dedicated to the nine avatars of Maa Durga, Navratri is celebrated over the span of nine nights. The Shukla Paksha of the 10th day of Ashwin is celebrated as Dussehra. This festival is also known as Vijayadashami.

(Representative image: Shutterstock)
(Representative image: Shutterstock)

Dussehra symbolises the triumph of good over evil. It is celebrated in different ways in many parts of the country. In some places, the festival signifies the victory of Goddess Durga over a demon named Mahishasura. This occasion also celebrates the victory of Lord Rama over Ravana.

The Story of Lord Rama

As per Hindu mythology, Ravana was the demon king of Lanka. He had kidnapped Goddess Sita, the wife of Lord Rama. Ravana kidnapped Sita and took her to his kingdom Lanka where he held her captive.

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To get his wife back, Lord Rama travelled to Lanka with an army of monkeys (vanar sena), his own Lakshaman and Lord Hanuman. Finally, Lord Rama killed Ravana on the tenth day of the battle. Thus, the first nine days are celebrated as Navratri and the tenth day marks Dussehra.

The Legend of Goddess Durga

In another story associated with Dussehra, it is believed that Dussehra also signifies the killing of Mahishasura, a demon, by the hands of Goddess Durga. Here also, the battle between the Goddess and Mahishasura, lasted for ten days. And on the tenth day, the Goddess killed Mahishasura. The demon Mahishasura wanted to rule the three worlds– Deva loka, the Prithvi loka and Patala loka.

Mahishasura first prayed to Lord Brahma in order to please him. He was successful in garnering the attention of Lord Brahma. Mahishasura wanted to be immortal. Lord Brahma ended granted his wish but there was a condition.

Brahma blessed him saying that only a woman will be able to overcome him. Mahishasura thought no woman would be that powerful. He started creating havoc everywhere and Gods were unable to stop him

That’s when, Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu, and Lord Shiva created Goddess Durga with their combined powers. They gave her several weapons to help her in killing Mahishasura. Then, on the tenth day of the battle, Goddess Durga destroyed Mahishasura. This is the reason why Dussehra is celebrated after Navratri.

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