Dussehra 2020 is one of the major festivals of Hinduism, celebrating the victory of good over evil. The celebration of this triumph falls on the Dashami (tenth day) of Shukla Paksha of the month of Ashwin. This year, Dussehra 2020 will fall on Sunday, 25 October 2020. Another name for this celebration is Vijayadashami 2020, indicating that this is the day Lord Rama vanquished Ravana and won the war. This commemoration comes after the Sharad Navratri, the nine days of fasting for the nine forms of Goddess Durga. Dussehra 2020 celebrates not only the victory of Lord Rama, but also that of Goddess Durga, and even Arjuna from Mahabharat. Several stories and legends are written in various Hindu scriptures, and in each of them, good prevails over evil on Vijayadashmi or Dussehra 2020.
In today’s times, the celebrations of dussehra 2020 includes carnivals and portrayals of Ramleela before effigies of Ravana, Meghanad, and Kumbhakaran and burnt. This incineration is symbolistic of burning of the bad habits and evils from inside us, filling ourselves with the light of goodness. In addition to this, many areas also celebrate the defeat of the demon Mahishasura by Goddess Durga who took the avatar to kill the buffalo demon and save the Earth from his evil deeds. Another story is of the Pandava Arjuna killing 100,000 soldiers and defeating all Kuru warriors including Bhishma Pitamaha, Drona, Karna, a significant example of victory of good (Dharma) over evil (Adharma).
Let us now read about these legends and about the festival of Dussehra 2020 below.
Dussehra 2020 conveys the message every year that no matter how big the evil power is, goodness always triumphs. It teaches us that we should always follow the good virtues in life. Dussehra 2020 or Vijayadashmi is considered as the beginning of a new harvest season. Different rituals are performed by the farmers for reviving the soil’s fertility, by receiving the blessings of Mother Goddess. During the nine days of Sharada Navaratri, Ramleela, the theoretical representation of Lord Rama’s life is performed for the spiritual awakening of people. Vijayadashmi or Dussehra 2020 is observed on the tenth day , which marks the end of the Ramleela.
Different parts of the country follow different legends of Dussehra 2020 or Vijayadashmi. In parts of North India, the legend of Lord Rama is the main reason of celebrating Dussehra 2020. Whereas, in South India and East India, victory of Goddess Maa Durga over the demon Mahishasura is the main reason for celebrating Vijayadashami as Durgotsav.
Lord Rama is the seventh Avatar (incarnation) of Lord Vishnu. He came to earth to destroy the arrogant demon Ravana. There is a long story behind the legend of Rama, but the abduction of his wife, Sita is the main reason for Ravana’s demise. During the Vanavas (exile) of Lord Rama, Lakshman, and Goddess Sita; one day Ravana went to their place for revenge of his sister, Surpanakha’s insult by Lakshman. Sending Lord Rama and Lakshman away through deceit, he approached Goddess Sita in the form of a monk, asking for alms. Captivated by her beauty he forcefully kidnapped Mata Sita and brought her to his kingdom, Lanka.
When Lord Rama returned and learned of his missing wife, he prepared an army to fight against Ravana in order to rescue Mata Sita. He was supported by the Vanara Sena (an army of monkeys) that included, Hanuman (Lord Rama’s ardent follower). They entered into a fight with Ravana and defeated him, successfully rescuing Goddess Sita. Lord Rama defeated Ravana, on the day of Dussehra or Vijayadashmi. Since then, the day is celebrated as Dussehra as the victory of good over evil.
On this day, we should take an oath together to kill our inner evil on Dussehra 2020.
Mahishasura was an arrogant demon, who won the favor of Lord Shiva after performing strict tenacities. He wanted the people to worship him as someone equivalent to god. Lord Shiva blessed him with a boon that neither a man, nor any deity could kill him. After getting the blessings of Lord Shiva, his cruelty exceeded beyond limits.
As the people prayed to the Trideva for help, Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu, and Lord Brahma came together and merged their powers that resulted in the birth of a woman warrior, Goddess Durga. Maa Durga entered into a fight with Mahishasura and defeated him on the day of Vijayadashami or Dussehra. Durgotsav is the name of the festival which is popularly used in the context of Maa Durga's victory over Mahishasura. Durgotsav is mainly celebrated in South India, while in East India, the victory is celebrated as Durga Puja.
India is a diverse country and all the festivities differ from place to place. In the same vein, let us find out about the different ways Indians celebrate Dussehra 2020 throughout the country:
In North India, the main legend behind the celebrations of Dussehra 2020 is that of Lord Rama. Therefore, there is a tradition of performing Ramleela every year. Ramleela is the portrayal of Lord Rama’s life – his birth, education, marriage to Goddess Sita, exile, life in the forests, humiliation of Surpanakha, abduction of Goddess Sita, preparation for the war, and defeat of Ravana at Lord Rama’s hands. The play spans the entire nine divine days of Sharad Navratri. On the following tenth day, Dussehra 2020 is celebrated with the death of Ravana and burning his effigies.
These Ramleelas are organised by Ramleela committees, at different places for the spiritual awakening of people. On Dussehra 2020 or Vijayadashmi, the representations of Ravana, Kumbhakarana, and Meghanaad are burnt. Large number of people gather, to enjoy Ramleela, the carnival, and fireworks. Just like any other year, Dussehra 2020 will also witness similar celebrations in North India.
Kullu Dussehra 2020 is a very famous event in Himachal Pradesh. Infact, state government has awarded the status of international festival to Kullu Dussehra or Vijayadashmi. Kullu Dussehra 2020 attracts lots of tourists and it proves to be a boon for Himachal Tourism.
Kullu Dussehra 2020 begins on the day of Vijayadashmi, and continues for the next seven days. The Kullu Dussehra 2020 celebrations will begin from 25 October and continue for the entire week. The main deity worshiped during Kullu Dussehra is Lord Raghunath, with thousands of other local deities.
Victory of Maa Durga over the demon Mahishasura is the main legend behind Dussehra 2020 celebrations in Mysore and Bengal. So, the festival is popularly known as Durga Puja or Durgotsav. Different Durga Puja Pandals are organized throughout the city, traditional dances are performed with devotional songs, and Bhog is offered to Maa Durga, in these Pandals. Durgotsav or Vijayadashmi is also considered an important day for starting formal education. Students keep and worship their books in front of Maa Durga on Durgotsav or Vijayadashmi. This auspicious day is also considered good for starting any new business. Another celebration of Dussehra 2020 is Mysore Dasara, a very famous 10-day festival, that begins with Navaratri and ends with Dussehra 2020.
In Maharashtra, the idols that are established on the first day of Sharad Navratri are immersed in water, on Dussehra 2020. People worship Apta (Bauhinia Racemosa) tree and exchange its leaves for wishing good luck in future. The golden Marigold flower is also used by people for decorating homes and worshiping. Maharashtrians also consider Dussehra 2020 as an important day, for starting new work or business.
Vijayadashami or Dussehra 2020 is one of the biggest festivals of Nepal. They celebrate Dussehra 2020 as Dashain. Longest holidays of the country are observed during these days. Vijayadashami is celebrated by all the Hindu and non Hindu people of Nepal.
The elder members of the family apply Tika, and put Jamara, behind the ears of the younger members of the family. Jamara is a kind of grass that is grown on the first day of Sharada Navaratri. People offer large amount of goat and buffalo meat, and chicken to Maa Durga as bhoga. Then this blessed food of god is consumed as prasad.
Dussehra 2020 or Vijayadashmi is one of the biggest festivals of Bangladesh. It is celebrated for up to five days. They worship Maa Durga from the sixth day of Navratri (shashti) and submerge her idols in water on Dussehra 2020. People of Bangladesh also worship water with turmeric and other holy items, for higher crop yields.
A festival can never be complete without sensing the aroma of delicious food. Therefore, let us take a look at the food delicacies of Dussehra 2020.
Dussehra 2020 or Vijayadashmi is one of the biggest festivals of India. Some famous traditional dishes are prepared during the celebrations, to make it more special.
Celebrate Dussehra 2020 with full fun and enjoyment in its vivid colors, either by watching Ramleela and Ravan Dahan in North India or by worshiping Maa Durga in South and East India. However, along with that, also try to follow the values of Lord Rama and Maa Durga in life. Dussehra 2020 or Vijayadashmi has a special significance in our lives, as it holds the reason that established humanity on earth. Hence, it will always be regarded as the prime cause of our sustenance. So, do not miss the chance to venerate the Lord this Dussehra 2020. Be prepared to invoke the blessings of godly virtues!