Also known as Shastra Puja and Ashtra Puja, Ayudha Puja is a festival mostly celebrated in the southern states of India like Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Kerala. The day of Ayudha Puja falls on the ninth day of Navratri, which is called Maha Navami.
Different Names of Ayudha Puja Festival:
In various parts of India, the festival of Ayudha Puja is named little differently. Here is what it is called in discrete states:
- Andhra Pradesh & Telangana: Aayudha Pooja
- Karnataka: Ayudha Puje
- Kerala: Ayudha Puja
- Maharashtra: Khande Navami
- Tamil Nadu: Ayudha Poojai
Ayudha Pooja History:
The legend about Ayudha Puja is related to Navratri itself. It is believed that the Goddess Durga slew the demon Mahishasura at the juncture of Ashtami and Navami, and then laid down her weapons. They were worshipped afterwards, and Ayudha Puja is, thus, a celebration to Maa Durga’s victory over the demon king.
According to the legend of Mahabharata, after being forced to exile (Vanvas), Arjun hid his weapons (Ayudha) under a Shami tree. When the Pandavas returned to the tree after one year of exile, they found that his weapons were still there as the day he left them. After retrieval of the weapons, they worshipped them and went on to win the battle of Kurukshetra. They came back on the day of Vijayadashami and worshipped the Shami tree as well. Therefore in some parts of India, Shami trees are also worshipped on the day of Dussehra.
Significance of Ayudha Pooja:
Ayudha means weapons. In ancient times, Ayudha Puja was the day to worship weapons. In modern days, it has been changed to showing reverence to the instrument or the tools of the craftsmen, just like Vishwakarma Puja. The day of Ayudha Puja holds special significance to the artisans and craftsmen, as it is believed that tools and instruments help them achieve success in their respective profession, and they should be worshipped and respected to perform well and be rewarded. Worshipping a Vyapar Vrudhhi Yantra would help you improve your professional relationships, bring positivity to your business, and expand it.
In recent times, people also worship their vehicles, and thus it is called Vahana Puja as well. People venerate their cars, trucks, scooters, and motorbikes on this day to get rid of all sorts of evils.
Ayudha Puja Date and Timings of Muhurat:
Now, that we know about the significance of Ayudha Puja, let us understand the timings to perform the Puja on this auspicious day.
- Ayudha Puja Date: October 25, 2020, Sunday
- Ayudha Puja Vijaya Muhurat - 01:57 PM to 02:42 PM (45 Mins)
- Navami Tithi Begins - 06:58 AM on Oct 24, 2020
- Navami Tithi Ends - 07:41 AM on Oct 25, 2020
How is Ayudha Puja Performed?
The procedure to perform Ayudha Puja differs across the states. However, you can follow these steps to perform Ayudha Puja:
On the evening of Puja, start with washing or cleaning your tools, instruments of vocation, or your vehicles. You can also paint or polish them if required.
Mark a tilak on them with turmeric, kumkum, and sandalwood paste.
For weapons, you should also clean and wash them. Mark a tilak on them as before and put them in line against a wall with flowers. Marigold is a very significant flower in the celebration of Ayudha Puja.
Next morning, on the day of Maha Navami, worship all the instruments and tools, or weapons by putting them with the idols or pictures of Maa Saraswati, Lakshmi and Parvati.
In some places, Maa Aparajita is worshipped before Puja with Ayudha Puja Mantra:
‘जयदे वरदे देवि दशम्यामपराजिते। धारयामि भुजे दक्षे जयलाभाभिवृद्धये।।’
Musical instruments and books can also be worshipped this way. On the day of Ayudha Puja, these instruments, weapons, or tools are not supposed to be disturbed.
What does Ayudha Puja Teach?
Ayudha Puja is a day of worshipping the weapons, tools, mediums of earnings and contemplating their roles in our lives. In ancient times, it was more about weapons that conquered the enemies and protected the yielder. Whereas the modern definition of the Puja is about being grateful to the things that help us make our lives better. This Maha Navmi, it is time to appreciate the significance of them in our lives.
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With Ganesha’s Grace,
The GaneshaSpeaks.com Team