First day of Vijaya Dashami : Ghatasthapana

Names of Nava Durga

Shailaputri, Bharmacharini, Chandra Ghanta, Kushmanda, Skanda Mata, Katyayani, Kaal Ratri, Maha Gauri, Siddhidatri


Ghatsthapana : Kalashsthapana : शारदीय नवरात्रि  : Ashwin (Sharadiya) Navaratra

“मम महामायाभगवती ( वा मायाधिपति भगवत ) प्रीतये ( आयुर्बलवित्तारोयसमादरादिप्राप्तये वा ) नवरात्रव्रतमहं करिष्ये।”

Ghatasthapana is the first day of Vijaya Dashami. 

Ghata means "pot or vessel" and sthapana means "to establish". Combining both words the literal meaning is to establish a pot.

Ghatasthapana is also known as Kalasthapana as Kasal also a type of water vessel. 

The Ghatasthapana day falls on the first day after the no-moon day (the bright forthright) of the Ashwin month of Bikrarm Sambat Calendar.
Ghatasthapana is on Sept 25, 2014. That is on Ashwin  09, 2071.

In this day the kalash, (holy water vessel) symbolizing Goddess Durga is placed in the prayer (pooja) room. The pot is either made up of clay or metal. The kalash is filled with holy water and covered with cow dung (गोबर) on to which seeds is spread to decorate it. The plant which grow big in 10 days is called Jamara.

Sand collected form river bank is spread in the prayer room as a cake around the kalash making it a center. Barley seed along with sesame is planted on the sand surrounding the kalas. Certain favorable moment is determined by the pundits (priest) to start the Ghatasthapana.  Priest chants a welcome mantra, requesting goddess Durga to bless kalash with resting herself for ten days in the prayer room. Food items, abir, kumkum and other colorful powders and flowers  are offered to the Ghata. A lamp with sesame oil is lit. This lamp should be burning all day and night till the tenth day or Vijaya Dashami.  The chandi (चण्डी पाठ) mantra is recited for goddess Durga Bhawani in the room of Ghatasthapana for 10 days.

Generally male member (who have already done Bratabandha) reads one chapter of Chandi every morning and evening. They take shower and wear clean white dhoti while going inside the prayer room.

There is a tradition of restricting unmarried women, non-family members and boys before Vratabanda to enter  Ghatasthapana room. Weapons are placed front of Goddess Durga Bhawani and worshipped.  People blow Sankha and play Damaru while worshiping Durga Bhawani and Jamara.

How is Ghatasthapana Pooja performed

The puja room is cleaned and a Kalash made of clay or copper with large opening is filled with water, sandalwood paste, flowers, Holy grass (duvo (दूबो)), rice mixed with turmeric (akshyata), betel nut, five leaves, five gems or a gold coin. A coconut is placed on top of the Kalash – some people avoid placing the coconut and instead use garland to cover the top. The neck of the Kalash is tied with white and red piece of cloth.

How to plant Jamara

After the decoration of Kalash, the process of plantation starts. Some people plant seven types of grains like barely, wheat Maize, sesame seed etc. and others just plant Barley and sesame seeds.  Mantras dedicated to Lord Varun and goddess Durga are chanted. Photo of Goddess Durga or any other incarnation of Goddess Shakti is kept nearby.  Durga Yantra, if available, is set up near the picture of Goddess Durga. People plant the barley onto the sand, which is called Jamara in Nepali. It is put on the head in the tenth day of Dashain as Prasad of Durga Bhawani.

This is the mantra chanted while establishing the holy pot – (Ghatasthapana Mantra)  

“मम महामायाभगवती ( वा मायाधिपति भगवत ) प्रीतये ( आयुर्बलवित्तारोयसमादरादिप्राप्तये वा ) नवरात्रव्रतमहं करिष्ये।”

Garlands and flowers or painting or idol of goddess Durga are placed on a holy plate. Flowers are offered to the Ghata (pot) and to the idol or painting/photo of Goddess.

The mantras that are chanted during puja vary from region to region and vary with family tradition. Some people select for simple Goddess Durga mantras. The sand bed and in the pot with sand must remain wet for all ten days. Fresh flowers and garland are offered all nine days. Generally people read Chandi or Durga Kavach during these 9 days of Devi worships.

On the tenth day, the grains grow about 3 inch or 5 inch. This is cut and given as Prasad to family members, friends and neighbors as Jamara