Mysore Dasara, a 10-day extravaganza that draws tourists from all over the world, is also known as Nadahabba (state festival). Dasara, which is observed in September or October during the Hindu month of Ashvina, symbolizes the victory of good over evil and is marked by the killing of the demon Mahishasura by Goddess Chamundeshwari, the patron goddess of Mysore.
Mysore Dasara is unparalleled in its grandeur and opulence. The royal flag is raised at the top of the stately Mysore Palace to signify the start of the celebrations. In the days that follow, the city is decked out in vivid colors and eye-catching lights, producing an enthralling show that will captivate everyone who sees it.
The slaying of Mahishasura in Mysore
Mysore’s history and culture are intricately entwined with the legend of Mahishasura’s murder. Hindus describe Mahishasura as a strong demon who tormented both humans and gods. To defeat the demon, the gods turned to Goddess Durga for assistance. Nine days of fierce fighting later, Durga defeated Mahishasura in a battle that was fierce, to say the least.
The Chamundi Hills, which are situated outside of Mysore, are thought to be the location where Mahishasura was killed. The sacred Chamundeshwari Temple, devoted to the fierce form of Goddess Durga, is situated atop the hill.
The victory of good over evil is symbolized by the killing of Mahishasura. It serves as a reminder that divine intervention has the ability to subdue even the mightiest forces of evil.
The story of Mahishasura’s death holds special significance during the Navratri celebration. Nine days are dedicated to the Hindu festival of Navratri, which honours the divine feminine.
During Navratri, a distinct manifestation of Goddess Durga is honoured on each day. On Vijayadashami, the ninth day of Navratri, people celebrate Durga’s victory over Mahishasura.
Reasons for Mysore Dasara's fame
Magnificence and royal patronage: Mysore Dasara’s royal past runs deep in the city. The Wodeyar dynasty organised the festival’s inaugural celebration in the fourteenth century, and the royal family has continued to supervise it ever since. The royal family’s participation gives the celebrations a sense of grandeur and authenticity that makes them genuinely exceptional and unforgettable.
Jamboo Savari: The magnificent elephant parade, the main attraction of Mysore Dasara is the elephant procession, or Jamboo Savari. On the day of Vijayadashami, the idol of Goddess Chamundeshwari is carried through the city streets by a magnificent procession of elephants that have been confined. It is truly amazing to see these magnificent animals dressed in their finest regalia.
Extravaganza of culture: Mysore Dasara is a celebration of art, culture, and legacy in addition to religion. Numerous cultural events are held throughout the festival to highlight the rich traditions of Karnataka. These activities include exhibitions, athletic competitions, and music and dance performances.
Mysore Palace’s illumination: The palace is magnificent year-round, but during Dasara, it is changed into a fantastical fantasy land. Millions of lights are used throughout the palace to create a stunning display that is sure to enthrall guests.
Recognition throughout the world: Mysore Dasara is one of India’s most well-known celebrations, and it is known throughout the world. Travellers from all over the world flock to the festival to take in its grandeur and experience the vibrant atmosphere.