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Goddess Durga in the act of killing Mahishasur, the demon.

It is believed that Goddess Durga is the combined form of powers of Goddesses Lakshmi, Kali and Saraswati. Also, she protects her devotees from evil powers and safeguards them.

According to Hindu mythology, Goddess Durga was created by Lord Vishnu to fight the demon, Mahishasur.


It must be noted that Goddess Durga represents the power of the Supreme Being that preserves moral order and righteousness in the creation. As the Sanskrit word ‘Durga’ means fort or a place that is protected, therefore Goddess Durga, also called Divine Shakti, protects mankind from evil and misery by destroying evil forces.

As seen in sculptures and pictures, Goddess Durga is depicted as a warrior woman with eight hands, carrying weapons of different kinds with different mudras. Therefore, let us see what Goddess Durga represents.

Chakra in Goddess Durga’s first upper right hand symbolises dharma, meaning duty and righteousness. This denotes that we must perform our duties and responsibilities in life.

Conch in Goddess Durga’s first upper left hand symbolises happiness. This means that we must perform our duties happily and cheerfully and not with resentment.

Sword in Goddess Durga’s second right lower hand symbolises eradication of vices. This denotes that we must learn to discriminate and eradicate our evil qualities.

Bow and arrow in Goddess Durga’s second left lower hand symbolises character like Lord Rama. This means that when we face difficulties in our life, we should not lose our character, i.e. values.

Lotus Flower in Goddess Durga’s third lower left hand symbolises detachment. This denotes that we must live in the world without attachment to the external world. Just like the lotus flower stays in dirty water yet smiles and gives its beauty to others, we must also do the same.

Club in Goddess Durga’s third right lower hand is the symbol of Lord Hanuman, and symbolises devotion and surrender. This means that whatever we do in our life, we must do it with love and devotion , and accept the outcome as the Almighty's will.

Trident/Trishul in Goddess Durga’s fourth left lower hand symbolises courage. This denotes that we must have the courage to eliminate our evil qualities and face the challenges which life gives us.

Fourth lower right hand symbolises forgiveness and Goddess Durga giving her blessings. This also denotes that we must forgive ourselves and others for all the mistakes and move forward in our lives.

At the same time, as Goddess Durga is always seen as riding on a lion or a tiger. Therefore, this symbolises unlimited power. Also, Goddess Durga is seen wearing a red saree, which denotes she is destroying all the evil forces and is protecting mankind from pain and suffering.

Keywords: Durga, Navratri, Devotion, Hindu Mythology, Hinduism.



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Well, if you'll notice then the moon takes twenty-nine days to complete its lunar cycle, whereas women's menstrual cycle is generally 28 days! Coincidence? I think, not.

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Hugs, caress scenes, extramarital affairs, vulgar and bold dressing, bed scenes and intimacy of married couples are being glamourised in utter disregard to Islamic teachings and culture of Pakistani society," PEMRA stated

The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has directed Pak TV channels to stop airing what it calls indecency and intimacy in dramas, Samaa TV reported.

A notification issued by the authority states that it has been receiving numerous complaints from viewers who believe that the content being depicted in dramas does not represent the "true picture of Pakistani society".

"PEMRA finally got something right: Intimacy and affection between married couples isn't 'true depiction of Pakistani society and must not be 'glamourized'. Our 'culture' is control, abuse, and violence, which we must jealously guard against the imposition of such alien values," said Reema Omer, Legal Advisor, South Asia, International Commission of Jurists.

"Hugs, caress scenes, extramarital affairs, vulgar and bold dressing, bed scenes and intimacy of married couples are being glamourized in utter disregard to Islamic teachings and culture of Pakistani society," PEMRA stated, as per the report.

The authority added that it has directed channels time and again to review content with "indecent dressing, controversial and objectionable plots, bed scenes and unnecessary detailing of events".

Most complaints received by the PEMRA Call Centre during September concern drama serial "Juda Huay Kuch is Tarah", which created quite a storm on social media for showing an unwitting married couple as foster siblings in a teaser for an upcoming episode. However, it only turned out to be a family scheme after the full episode aired, but by that time criticism had mounted on HUM TV for using the themes of incest to drive the plot, the report said. (IANS/JB)

Keywords: Pakistan, Islam, Serials, Dramas, Culture, Teachings.


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Dozens of female high school and university students in Afghanistan have joined vocational centers to learn tailoring and cosmetology

Dozens of female high school and university students in Afghanistan have joined vocational centers to learn tailoring and cosmetology as the women and girls have been banned from school and university since the Taliban took over the country, Tolo News reported.

According to these girls, sitting at home is very difficult for them, therefore they are willing to learn a profession.

"It has been a couple of months that we are at home since schools and universities were closed. We have to learn a profession or a job because we can't sit like this at home," said Samira Sharifi, a student.

"I want to learn a profession for my future to help my family, we want our schools to be opened so that we can carry on with our education," said Mahnaz Ghulami, a student.

Most of the trainees in the vocational centres are students of high schools and universities.

After the closure of high schools and universities across Afghanistan, Herat female students have started gaining vocational training in the province.

"We have decided to learn tailoring along with our education," said Shaqaiq Ganji, a student.

"It's necessary for every woman to learn tailoring to help her family and her husband, especially in this bad economic situation," said Laili Sofizada, a teacher.

Due to the closure of schools and universities, the number of students in vocational centers doubled compared to recent years, the report added.

"Our classes had the capacity of 20 to 25 students but we increased it to 45 students, because most of the students have lost their spirit, and their schools and universities have closed," said Fatima Tokhi, director of technical and professional affairs at the Herat department of labour and social affairs.

The Labour and Social Affairs department of Herat said the department is working to provide more opportunities for Herat girls and women to learn vocational training.

"The art and professional sector and the kindergarten departments have started their activities, we support them and supervise their activities," said Mulla Mohammad Sabit, head of the labour and social affairs of Herat.

During the past two months, most of the women and girls who worked in state and private institutions lost their jobs and are trying to learn handicrafts and vocational training. (IANS/JB)


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