The Navaratri of spring is approaching. The 9 nights of Navaratri are sometimes divided into three parts. Three nights for the invocation of Durga, three for the invocation of Lakshmi and three for the invocation of Saraswati. 

Durga is the aspect of the Goddess in its entirety; Mahadevi, who is summoned to fight Mahishasura in the text Devi Mahatmyam. 

Mahishasura is a demon that is half buffalo and half human. One can understand him as our instinctive self.

Among our instincts is one that is very current right now; fear. Fear has a function, to keep us alive. 

The problem with fear as an instinct, however, is that it is meant to function in the face of a direct threat, such as meeting a lion. What it is not programmed for is to be able to determine what is a real threat in connection with complicated facts. 

Only the intellect can help with this. What can the intellect do then? The intellect can look at facts. The intellect can determine which sources are reliable and form an image of a situation based on that. Based on this, the intellect can handle the situation with skill.

Durga is direct and fearless. She enters the battle riding on a lion of courage. She is the very image of courage and strength and readiness. With open eyes she meets what she is facing and fights it, not in panic, but with skill. 

Sometimes, however, self-assessment of risks and skills in handling the situation is not enough. Somewhere we realize that we can not avoid all risk. That we can not completely control anything.

In the tantric text Devi Mahatmyam, the gods turn to Mahadevi (the Great Goddess) when the world threatens to perish, and despite all their own attempts, they have not been able to stop it. 

Ma! Ma! Ropar de. And hope for the protection of the great mother. 

Music: Invocation, Playlist. 

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