The fifth day of Navratri is dedicated to Goddess Skandamata, the fifth roop of Devi Durga. The name Skanda is derived from the war God Kartikeya (who was also known by the name Skanda) and Mata (which means, mother). She is depicted with four hands, with Lord Skanda in Her laps and is seen riding on a lion. Her upper two hands can be seen holding a lotus. While she holds Kartikaye (as a baby) in one hand; her fourth hand gesture is depicted in a blessing posture for her devotees. Maa Skandamata is a manifest of Goddess Parvati. A dedicated devotee can attain Her blessings in the form of achievements and respect by purifying his/her aura. She rules over the Vishuddha chakra (also known as the throat chakra). Worshipping her with full devotion can remove the evilness from the life and one can enjoy a peaceful life.Maa Skandamata is known by many names, such as
Padmasana: Padam means ‘lotus’ and asana means ‘seated’. The One who sits on ‘Lotus’.
Gaurivarna: The one with fair complexion.
Maheshwari: Wife of Lord Mahesh (Shiva).
MYTHOLOGICAL STORYAccording to Skanda Purana, once upon a time, a Devi named Devi Sati burnt herself in yagya kund and Lord Shiva went to Himalayas for meditation thereafter. At that time, demon Tārakāsur managed to please Lord Brahma by extreme penance and requested to be blessed with immortality. However, Lord Brahma turned down his request. To this, the demon asked for a death only with the hands of Lord Shiva’s son (as he knew that Lord Shiva will never remarry). After being blessed with this boon, Tārakāsur started hindering the peace of Brahma Lok. Noticing the fear of inhabitants in Brahma Lok, Lord Shiva agreed to marry Goddess Parvati and Kartikaye took birth as a son a Skandamata (a roop of Goddess Parvati) and was blessed by all Gods with special arms & powers. He killed the demon, Tārakāsur, and later, was chosen as commander-in-chief by all Gods for their armies.
COLOR DEDICATED TO MATA SKANDAMATA
In this form of Maa Durga, Maa skandamata is seen wearing the color blue. The devotees are advised to wear grey on this auspicious day.
HOW TO OFFER PUJA ON THE FIFTH DAY
1- After taking bath clean the puja ghar and put tilak on the idol.
2- The devotee should chant the following mantra 108 times:
सिंघासनगता नित्यम पद्माश्रितकरद्वया | शुभदास्तु सदा देवी स्कन्द माता यशश्विनी ||
3- The devotees should water the urn regularly and should light incense sticks, and offer red flowers and fruits to the idol and urn (ghatasthapana).
4- Akhand jyot should be kept burning until the 9th day.
5- Many people perform small yagya every day, dedicated to different roops of Goddess Durga and chant respective mantras.