As you will learn in every international school in Pune, Navaratri is the amalgamation of two words- ‘Nava’ which means nine, and ‘Ratri’, meaning night. This Hindu festival is spread over nine nights and ten days and is one of the most anticipated religious festivals of the year. At SNBP International School Pune, Dr. Dasharath Bhosale considers it important to educate his students about the history of this festival, and its mythological roots.
What is Navaratri?
Navaratri is dedicated to the worship of the goddess Shakti, who represents the energy of the cosmos. The nine nights are reserved for the veneration of the nine different incarnations of the deity. There are four different kinds of Navaratri celebrations spread out throughout the year- Chaitra Navaratri, Paush Navaratri, Magha Navaratri, Sharad Navaratri, although the Sharad Navaratri- also known as the Maha Navaratri- is considered the most important. Navaratri is usually observed during the month of Ashvin. At SNBP International, one of the top IB board schools in Pune, Dr. Dasharath Bhosale advocates teachers to narrate the importance of this festival to young students.
Why is Navaratri important?
The central importance of Navaratri, according to Dr. DK Bhosale, lies in its message- that good will always win over evil. As children will learn in CBSE schools in Pune, the eastern and north-eastern belts celebrate Navaratri in the form of Durga Puja. According to legend, Goddess Durga fought the evil demon Mahishasura, and the festivities celebrate her victory. In the northern and western sections, however, Navaratri marks the nine-day fight between Rama and Ravana, and his victory over the demon king.
While Durga Puja begins with Mahalaya and ends with Dashami, Navaratri ends with Dussehra. Dussehra is specifically significant, and in many cities of the western belt, straw idols of Ravana are burnt to uphold the core message of the festival- that evil can never win against good.
How is the festival celebrated?
The top 5 schools in Pune suggest that both Navaratri and Durga Puja are celebrated with a lot of pomp and vigour. The idols of Goddess Durga are worshipped regularly during the four main days of the festival- Saptami, Ashtami, Navami and Dashami. The melody in the percussion instruments fills the air as people join in on the fun and frolic.
For Navaratri, cities in the western and northern belt put up demonstrations of Ramleela- the story of Rama’s defeat of Ravana. Along with decorations, traditional dance recitals like dandiya and Garba form the primary attraction of the festivities. On the last day of the celebrations, the idols and effigies are either immersed or burnt. Students learn all about Durga Puja and Navaratri in the best schools in Pune.
At SNBP International School Pune, which is also considered to be one of the best international schools in Pune, students learn about the mythology associated with Navaratri under the able guidance of Dr. DK Bhosale. The knowledge of one’s cultural practices is crucial to the formation of well-rounded individuals who take pride in their heritage and cultural identity.