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Navratri 2013 - Lighting of lamp during Navratri

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Description: This article explains the spiritual science behind lighting an oil lamp continuously during Navrātri.



Navratri is a widely celebrated festival by Hindus across the world. This nine-day festival is celebrated by worshipping Deity Shakti (Divine Energy). During these nine-days of Navratri various rituals are performed. One of them is lighting an oil lamp, which is kept continuously lit for nine days. In this article, we will explain what will be required to light the lamp, how to light the lamp and the spiritual significance of lighting the lamp.

Material required

  • 1 Lamp (Brass lamp is generally used)
  • Oil (Sesame oil for maximum spiritual benefits, if not possible, one can use any other vegetable oil)
  • A small plate (for keeping the lamp on it)
  • Cotton wicks (at least 50mm in length, one can buy it from an Indian store or it can be made at home from cotton)

Where to place this lamp and how to light it?

  1. Select a safe place in the house (preferably near the altar in the temple room). For carpeted floors, one should use PVC matt or similar to prevent the lamp from falling on the floor. Take care if there are children / pets in the house.
  2. Place the brass lamp on a plate
  3. Take 2 wicks (rolled together) and place it in the lamp keeping 5mm wick projecting out of the lamp. Ensure that the wick (when lit) does not face the South direction.
  4. Pour oil in the lamp (sufficient to fill up to the rim of the lamp). Be careful that it should not spill over onto the floor.
  5. Light the projected wick with a match stick or a lighter. One can pray – ‘O Shrī Durgādēvī, please let Your Divine principle and Tēj principle remain in this house, and let all of us derive its benefits.’

Spiritual significance of lighting the lamp

  1. During Navratri, the environment is filled with the waves of Tej (radiance) from Goddess.
  2. Lamp is a symbol of Tej; therefore, the waves of Tej  from Goddess are attracted towards the flame of the lamp.
  3. Due to lighting the lamps, the waves of Tej continuously circulate in the home; thus increasing the Tej.
  4. As a result, one obtains its spiritual benefits.

Hence, it is important to keep the lamp continuously lit during the Navratri.

If the lamp extinguishes due to some reasons – like the oil running out, wind, wick burning out, etc. then one should seek forgiveness from the Deity, and as atonement, pray to the Deity and chant 108 beads or 1000 beads of that Deity’s Name. For example, if one is worshipping Shri Durgadevi, then one should seek Her forgiveness on the lines – ‘O Shri Durgadevi, I (say your full name) seek Your forgiveness because the lamp has extinguished. I pray to You to forgive me and get done 108 beads of chanting done (or 1000 beads) from me as per Your expectations.’ After this prayer, chant the Deity’s Name, for example, ‘Shri Durgadevyai Namaha’, or ‘Shree Ganēshay Namaha’, etc.

Source: Holy festivals, Religious festivals and Vowed religious observances, published by Sanatan.

  1. Navratri
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  3. Navratri quiz
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