The annual Durga Puja festival in West Bengal, particularly in the vibrant city of Kolkata, is renowned for its spirit of inclusivity, uniting people of various religious backgrounds in the joyous celebrations. A Kolkata Puja Pandal took a remarkable step towards inclusivity, choosing an eight-year-old Muslim girl for Kanya or Kumari Pujan.
Kumari Puja, a significant ritual during Durga Puja, involves the symbolic worship of an unmarried girl who has not yet reached puberty. This ritual holds great cultural and religious importance, paying homage to the divine feminine energy Goddess Durga represents.
Kumari Puja is traditionally performed towards the end of Mahashtami Puja. According to Hindu scriptures, it commemorates the triumph of Goddess Kali over the demon Kolasura.
Hindus across India embrace a heartfelt tradition of washing the feet of young girls who symbolize the divine feminine energy.
The legend recounts the tale of Kolasura’s tyranny over heaven and earth, prompting the desperate gods to seek Mahakali’s intervention. The Goddess reincarnated as a maiden who beguiled and defeated the demon Kolasura.
Kolkata’s New Town: Mrittika Club’s women’s committee selected Nafisa as’ Kumari’, breaking traditional norms. Inspired by Swami Vivekananda, the Mrittika Club promotes inclusivity, choosing a Muslim girl for the Kumari role in their debut puja.
The Mrittika Club’s secretary, Pratham Mukherjee, highlights their choice, inspired by Swamiji’s example, fostering harmony and respect. A historic moment: A Muslim girl was honored in Kumari Puja, demonstrating unity, inclusivity, and the essence of Durga Puja.
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