Find out the dos and don’ts of fasting
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Photo credit: istockphoto. Navratri Vrat Rules: Find Out Dos and Don’ts of Fasting
- Goddess Durga Devotees Celebrate Navratri
- Navratri is a festival that spans nine days
- The Shardiya Navratri of the Hindu month of Ashwin is the most important and the most significant of all the Navratris (Magha, Chaitra and Ashadha)
Navratri, dedicated to the goddess Durga, is one of the most important festivals in the Hindu calendar. Spread over nine days, Navratri pays homage to the indifferent manifestations of female power. Although members of the Shakti sect celebrate Navratri four times a year, the one that falls during the month of Ashwin (September-October according to the Gregorian calendar) is the most popular. The faithful observe the fast during these nine days and follow specific protocols. Check out this link for the start and end dates of Navratri 2021, and click here to understand the benefits of vrat watching. And scroll down for more dos and don’ts.
Rules of Navratri Vrat
- Maintain celibacy. The Navratri (nine nights) is ideal for introspection, self-realization, self-discipline, self-control and spiritual awakening.
- Wake up early (preferably in Brahma Muhurat – around two hours before sunrise), take a bath and wear clean / cool clothes.
- Make Dhyana (meditation) followed by Sankalpa (decide to focus on the goal).
- Recite the Durga Saptashati and mantras dedicated to the Mother Goddess a ritual during these nine days.
- Those who observe a fast by consuming only one meal per day should not break their fast until after sunset, while those who follow a fruit / milk diet may eat at regular intervals. Eat only sattwic foods.
- Use rock salt, not regular refined salt. Check out the list of items you can and cannot include in your Navratri plan.
- Offer prayers in the nine different forms of Durga (Nav Durga) during these nine days.
Not to do
- Consumption of onions, garlic and other tamasic (heat generating) foods should be strictly avoided. Also, do not eat meat and do not consume alcohol / tobacco.
- Do not cut your hair or nails during this period. Men should not shave or trim their beards during Navratri.
- Don’t do anything that might hurt or offend other people by your words or actions.