During a nine-day period every autumn, Hindus in India and
throughout the world worship the Great Goddess, Durga -- the
formidable deity who is loved like a mother. One of the most
dramatic and popular of these celebrations is the Durga Puja, a
rite noted for its visual pageantry, ritual complexity, and
communal participation. In this book, Hillary Peter Rodrigues
describes the Bengali style of Durga Puja practiced in the sacred
city of Banaras from beginning to end. A romanization of the
Sanskrit litany is included along with an English translation.
In addition to the liturgical description, Rodrigues provides
information on the rite's component elements and mythic aspects.
There are interpretive sections on puja, the Great Goddess, women's
roles in the ritual, and the socio-cultural functions of the
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