Eat, Pray, Be Inspired


Eat, Pray, Be Inspired

Illustration: Akshita Monga


hen I was growing up, young girls were much in demand on ashtami. We wore our finest, were invited to many houses in the neighbourhood where we were fed delicacies such as halwa, poori and channa, and given a bit of money. The collections of the day would be enough to fund a month of snacks from the old man who brought salted gram, puffed rice, and orange ice lollies.

Ashtami was one of the most eagerly awaited days of my childhood; a day to venerate Shakti or feminine power in the form of the Mother Goddess. In North India and especially in the Punjabi community, “kanjak pooja” is performed on this day, and little – virginal – girls are worshipped.