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Navratri - 08 - Mahagauri Devi

The eighth day of Navratri is dedicated to Mahagauri devi. Let us find out who Mahagauri devi is, and what her story tells is...


There are two versions regarding the origin of Mahagauri, which means 'extremely fair'.

As per the first story, after Kaalratri had defeated Chanda-Munda and Raktabija, her skin had turned black. Shiva, on the advice of Brahma, teased her by calling her 'kali' (dark skinned). Enraged, she prayed to Brahma to get her fair skin back. Brahma advised her to bathe in the Mansarovar river.

When she did that, her black skin separated from her body to become a female form 'Kaushiki', and Parvati herself became fair again. It was Kaushiki who eventually killed Shumbha-Nishumbha, thus bypassing their boon that no man, demon, god or deity could kill them.

Another version goes that when Parvati as Brahmacharini was undergoing intense tapas to please Shiva, she got covered with dust and dirt. After Shiva finally relented, he bathed her in the river Ganga. All the dirt from Parvati's skin was washed away in the water, and the goddess emerged out of it with very fair skin.

The eighth day of Navratri is dedicated to Mahagauri.

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