Durga is the other manifestation of Parvati, in Her terrifying and awesome form. She rides on a lion, wields a number of weapons, wears a garland of skulls, holds a severed head in one hand and a lotus in another – all these represent destruction of evil and protection of good. The famous book of verses called “Durga Saptasati” (seven hundred verses on Durga) gives the stories of Durga’s power of destruction- for the benefit of the universe- of various demons. It contains auspicious prayers to pacify the furious mother Goddess and is recited with fervor by devotees during Navaratri celebration.

 

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