Tara Jayanthi is ascribed to Sri Tara Devi, the second of the ten manifestations of Sri Dasha Maha Vidya. The other manifestations are Kali, Tripura Sundari (Sadoshi), Bhuvaneshwari, Tripura Bhairavi, Chinnamastha, Dhumavathi, Bhagala Mukhi, Mathangi and Kamala. Sri Dash Maha Vidya is the conceptual incarnation of Sri Parvathi Devi.
Tara Jayanthi occurs on the Shukla Paksha Navami of Chaithra month. For 2021, it falls on Wednesday, 21st April 2021. The exact duration of the Navami Tithi has to be ascertained from the respective regional calendar.
The word ‘Tara’ means the star. As per the legend, though a star appears bright and beautiful to look, the radiance is caused due to its self-burning. It is believed that Tara is the personification of the desire to survive and excel which thrusts the life in the right direction.
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Sri Tara Devi – forms
Sri Tara Devi has eight forms such as Eka Jata, Ugra Tara, Mahogra, Kameshwari, Chamunda, Neel Saraswathi, Vajra and Bhadrakali.
Sri Tara Devi is worshipped for knowledge, wisdom and wealth. Making donation of food, money and clothes to the poor and the needy is considered auspicious.
Tara Jayanthi is celebrated by invoking and worshipping Sri Tara Devi. Sri Tara Devi is also known as Sri Neel Saraswathi as She is of bluish complexion. It is believed that Sri Tara Devi has weapons such as sword and khadga. She also wears the skirt made of tiger skin.
Tara Jayanthi – rituals
The rituals pertaining to the manifestations of Sri Dasha Maha Vidya are followed for Sri Tara Jayanthi.
The picture of Sri Tara Devi is kept at the puja place and worshipped with the mool mantra. At some community places, special homams / yagnas are conducted chanting the mantras pertaining to Sri Tara Devi. Cows are also given special puja.
Puja with Sri Tara Yantra
At homes, puja is conducted with the yantra of Sri Tara Devi. The yantra is the metal piece engraved with the geometrical design ascribed to Sri Tara Devi. There is a belief that this yantra should be worshipped only at night. The rituals of conducting the puja shall be as advised by the pujari or family elders. After completing the puja, keeping the yantra at the cash box is believed to bring in wealth.
On Tara Jayanthi day, a minimum of nine girl children below the age of ten are invited. They are revered as the incarnation of Sri Tara Devi. They are offered sumptuous feast and given good gifts. It is believed that such daan shall please Sri Tara Devi.
Tara Jayanthi is also called as Tara Maha Vidya Jayanthi and Maha Tara Jayanthi.