Skandamata is the fifth form of the Goddess Durga in Hinduism and is celebrated on the fifth day of the Navaratri festival. She is also known as Skanda Mata because she is the mother of Lord Skanda, also called Kartikeya or Murugan, who is the son of Lord Shiva. Skandamata is often depicted holding her infant son Skanda in her lap and riding a lion.
Key characteristics and aspects of Skandamata include:
- Motherly Aspect: Skandamata is revered as the loving and caring mother of Lord Skanda. She holds her infant son in her lap, symbolizing maternal love and protection.
- Riding a Lion: She is typically depicted riding a lion, which represents her divine strength and fearlessness.
- Four Arms: Skandamata is usually shown with four arms, two of which hold lotus flowers, while one hand holds her son Skanda, and the fourth hand is often raised in a gesture of blessing.
- Blue Color: She is often portrayed with a complexion resembling the color of Lord Skanda, who is depicted as having a bluish hue.
- Symbol of Motherhood: Her worship signifies the importance of motherhood, love, and nurturing in the cycle of creation.
Devotees worship Skandamata to seek her blessings for the well-being and protection of their children, as well as for maternal love and care. Her worship is believed to bring strength, courage, and compassion. On the fifth day of Navaratri, special prayers, rituals, and offerings are made in her honor.