DURGOSTAVA, SAFDURJUNG, ENCLAVE, NEW DELHI, INDIA.

Mahishasura and the goddess Durga.

Thousands of miles away from the labyrinth of the Minotaur in Crete, comes another legendary tale of a bull-man creature that in mythological times rose from the underworld to terrorize heaven and earth till finally vanquished by a ten armed goddess sitting astride a lion.

Mahishasura, is a central character in Durgostava and no ordinary demon. A gifted shape shifter he could transform at will into a raging buffalo to unleash carnage among his enemies. Plus protected by a boon from Bhrama, the creator of the universe, he was virtually invincible. No male deity, demon or mortal could slay him with bare hands or weapons. His shield of invincibility, however, did have one fatal flaw. It left him vulnerable to the fury of a woman.

Celebrate by the Bengali community across the world every Autumn, the Indian festival of Durgostava venerates the mythical battle in hymns sung by priests in Sanskrit and in imagery depicting the goddess thrusting her spear into the chest of the demon. His last wish was to be worshiped alongside her, and pleased by his request, the goddess granted it.

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