By Rani Findlay
This week marks the new moon at harvest time, and the Hindu festival of Navaratri—a time to revel in dancing, singing, worshipping, and feasting, as a way to celebrate the victory of light over dark and good over evil.
Navaratri is also an auspicious and beautiful occasion to honor the creative energy of the universe in the form of the divine feminine. Mythological goddesses such as Durga, Lakshmi, and Saraswati are archetypal energies that exist in each of us. The arrival of the Navaratri festival presents us with the opportunities to honor these qualities in ourselves.
Durga, the warrior goddess, brings fearlessness and the ability to over come obstacles so we can attain our goals.
Lakshmi, the goddess of abundance, brings the gifts of prosperity and the ability to fully experience our potential.
Saraswati, the goddess of wisdom, brings the gifts of learning, creativity, the arts and self-expression.
This is an ideal time to begin anew, to undertake a new venture in our outer and inner lives; it’s a time of opportunity to embrace our inner powers and move forward on our personal “hero’s” journey. Here’s a ritual you can practice alone or with a group to reveal the archetypal energies within yourself:
1. Write an intention on beautiful paper. Decorate it if you wish.
2. Find a symbol for each archetypal quality listed above. Be imaginative. Think of colors and shapes that evoke a positive feeling, symbols that stir and inspire your heart and mind. You might choose a stone, feather, shell, keepsake, religious icon, charm, flower, etc.
3. Gather your intention and symbols together. Wrap them up, box them, bundle them, set them on an altar, place them in a bowl, or rest them on a rock.
4. “Infuse” the symbols with your intention by praying, ringing a bell, lighting a candle or incense, chanting—whatever resonates for you.
5. Sit quietly and meditate on the quality arising in you.
6. Give that quality expression in your daily actions, be it by taking one step of courage daily toward a goal, sharing your abundance with another person, or uplifting someone with a gem of your wisdom. Write your experiences in a journal to reflect upon them.
Finally, a blessing: “May the blessings of Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati bestow on you an unfolding and powerful experience of courage, abundance, and wisdom!”
About the author: Rani Findlay is a certified Life-Cycle Celebrant, with 30 years of experience practicing ceremony. She creates powerful, personalized ceremonies for her clients, enabling people to be fully engaged in life’s meaningful milestones and transitions. ranithecelebrant.com