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The Navarthri dedicated to Devi, the Divine Mother, is celebrated all over India. In some places it is called Dussera, in some other places `Kalipuja' or `Saraswathi Puja' and in still others, `Ayudha Puja'. During Navarathri days the Divine Mother is worshipped in one or the other of her different manifestations namely Durga, Saraswathi, Kali, etc. The Puja in connection with Navarathri is known as Bhuvaneswari puja which means, the worship of `Universal Mother'. The festival is celebrated during the first nine days in the bright half of Aswina or September-October. The last three days of the Navarathri are called Durgashtami, Mahanavami and Vijayadasami, and they are considered more sacred than the other days for Devi worship. It is believed that by offering prayers to Devi during these three days one can attain the full benefits of observing the Navarathri rites for the whole period. People of Kerala celebrate Navarathri with style. The Saraswathi puja and Ayudha Puja are performed. The Goddess Saraswathi is worshipped as the Goddess of Learning, the deity of Gayathri, the fountain of fine arts and science, and the symbol of supreme vedantic knowledge. The importance of Ayudha Puja (the worship of implements) on this occasion may be due to the fact that on the Vijayadasami day, Arjuna took back his weapons which he had hidden in a Vani tree in order to lead a life in disguise for the promised period of exile. It is believed that one who begins or resumes his learning to work on the Vijayadasami day will secure a grand success as Arjuna did in Kurukshetra war. On the Durgashtami day a ceremony called Poojavaipu is performed in the evening. In a village, generally, it is done only in certain households like the Brahmins who have a reputation for learning, in temples and also sometimes in the village schools. The members of other houses in the village attend the ceremony performed in these houses or institutions. In a well-decorated room, books and grandhas (holy books) are tastefully arranged with a picture or an image of Goddess Saraswathi in front. Then sometimes weapons and implements are kept by the side of books and garandhas. A Puja is performed to Saraswathi during which fruit, beaten rice, roasted paddy (malar), jaggery etc, are offered to Her after which they are distributed among those present. The following day, Mahanavami, is totally devoted to the worship of Saraswathi. Pooja is performed both in the morning and in the evening and many more items such as rice, payasam, thirali, etc are offered to Devi. On the Vijayadasami day after a Puja in the morning, the books and implements are removed from the room and this ceremony is called `Puja Eduppu'. The time for the break up of the puja marks the beginning of learning and work and this moment is considered auspicious. Some members of the household write the alphabets on sand, particularly the children, and read a few sentences from sacred books. Similarly the craftsmen and other skilled workers do some work using their implements. According to custom it is only after this ceremony that the children are entitled to read or write. There are certain communities which celebrate the festival on all days of Navarathri. Images of Gods, animals and toys of different variety are arranged for exhibition and this performance is called `Koluvaipu'. The perfect place for the Navarathri celebration is at Sree Padmanabha Swami Temple at Thiruvananthapuram. Apart form the usual pujas and rituals, classical music recitals are held on the Navarathri mandapam every night during the festival in which luminaries of Carnatic music participate in a practice which was started by Maharaja Swathithirunal .

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