The beginning of the nine days of Navratri is the Ghatasthapana. There are set of rituals and rules that need to be followed while performing Ghatasthapana. It is believed that the rituals of Ghatasthapana cannot be performed on the day of Amavasya and night.
The timings for Ghatsthapana
The shubh muhurat or the best time to do the Ghatasthapana is during the Pratipada. If not possible at that time, then Ghatasthapana can be done during the Abhijit Muhurta. There are some other timings also when the Ghatsthapana can be done such as Vaidhriti Yoga and Nakshatra Chitra but usually, it is not recommended at this time.
The required items for the Ghatsthapana
- A clay pot with wide opening in order to sow the Sapta Dhanya.
- Soil for planting the Sapta Dhanya.
- Sapta Dhanya, is the mixing of seven different types of grains.
- A small sized pitcher of brass or clay (Kalash).
- Ganga Jal, the sacred water in order to fill the Kalash.
- Sacred Moli (thread)
- Bettle Nuts (Supari)
- Coins in order to put inside the Kalash.
- Five leaves of the mango tree or the Ashoka
- A lid for covering the Kalash.
- Raw unbroken rice also known as Akshata.
- A coconut that is unpeeled.
- Red cloth for covering the coconut.
- Garland of flowers preferably marigold.
Preparation of the Kalash
- Take the wide clay pot and put the wet soil in the pot. Add some of the grain seeds in the soil after that second layer of the soil then add the grains. You can add little water after setting the soil.
- Tie the sacred thread on the neck of the Kalash. Fill the Kalash up to the neck with the holy water. In the water put the Supari, Akshata, scent, Durva, and the coins.
- At the edges distribute the five mango leaves and cover the lid.
- Now wrap the coconut with the red cloth and tie it with the sacred thread.
- Put the coconut on top of the Kalash.
- Lastly, place the Kalash at the center of the clay pot that has grains in it.
At the end, the Goddess Durga is invoked and prayers and poojas are done so that the Goddess Durga resides in the Kalash for nine days.