Dussehra is celebrated with lot of concentration and dedication in all over India. This festival is celebrated to gratify the almighty goddess “Durga”. Many believe in India this festive mark the lucky start over enterprising new venture and projects. It is celebrated with great zeal and enthusiasm throughout the country.
Dussehra festival is also known as Vijay Dashami. It is a day which is a symbol for the victory of truth over lies, righteousness over wickedness. According to the lunar calendar Dussehra festival is observed on the tenth day in Shukla Paksha of Ashwin month. Generally, Dussehra falls in the months of September or October each year. Dussehra festival in the year 2012 is on October 24.
The festivity of Dussehra is well-established in the Hindu epic of Ramayana, according to which, Lord Rama who is well thought-out to have a culmination of all the best qualities that a human being can possess killed the ten-headed devil King of Lanka, Ravana, in Satyug era. Ravana had abducted Rama’s wife Sita. Rama, along with his brother Lakshmana, follower Hanuman and an army of monkeys, headed towards Lanka (Ravana’s Kingdom) in order to challenge the might of Ravana in a war to rescue Sita. On his way to Lanka, Rama organized Chandi Pooja to seek the blessings of Durga, the Goddess of power and courage.
After a fierce war Lord Rama succeeded in killing Ravana and freed his wife Sita. It is, therefore, the day was celebrated to commemorate the victory of Rama over Ravana. As Lord Rama fought a ten-day battle against Ravana, the day of his victory is called ‘Vijaya Dashmi. In spite of all powers that Ravana possessed, it was ultimately the good intentions of Lord Rama that took victory. Dussehra symbolizes the conquest of good over evil. It is thus considered as a propitious day. Even today after burning the effigy of Ravana along with his subordinates Meghanad and Kumbhkarana on the Dusshera celebrations, we simply symbolize the power of goodness and humanity is above all kind of powers.
The Hindus revive the triumph of Rama over Ravana during Dussehra event. Ramalila, a dance-drama narrating the story of Rama’s life according to the Ramayana, is performed for the nine days preceding Dussehra. Almost every area stages its version of the play, preparations for which take place many days in advance. Traditionally only men participated in the Ramalila, enacting the women’s characters also. Today however, women in urban areas also participate.
These Ramalilas move towards an end when the final act of this drama is staged. Huge statue, sometimes almost 30 meters high, of Ravana, his son and brother are made many days in advance, using colored and hay. They are also stuffed with crackers as well as small rockets. At the appointed time, a person dressed as Rama, shoots flaming arrows at these statues, which start to burn. Slogans of ‘Jai Shri Rama’ or ‘Hail Lord Rama‘ boom. This marks the culmination and termination of the celebrations. Elaborate and gay processions depicting various scenes of the Ramayana in the form of tableaus are taken out through bazaars and main streets. Apart from all this, Ramlila is also performed as a dance-drama by professional troupes.
Besides burning these effigies of the demons, five animals including a rooster, a fish, a lamb, a crab, and a buffalo are also sacrificed here and a stack of wood is burnt seven days later to symbolize the victory of good over evil.
All these undertakings of Dussehra be laying-in of foundation of a new building, opening of a new commercial establishment or even initiating a child into the world of learning- are started on this day. Houses and shops are decorated with flower studded strings called ‘Torans‘ (Floral Gateways) Also on this day vehicles, machineries, books, weapons & also tools are worshipped.
Dussehra 2012 will be the day to stand for the conquest of good over evil. It is thus considered as an auspicious day. This day is held in high regard by people who believe that whenever evil will try to dominate mankind then God will come to keep humanity safe. Dussehra 2012 will be celebrated with this spirit across the country.