A few weeks ago, my colleague’s mother held a “Puja”. This one was held for the Goddess Durga. Durga (Sanskrit: दुर्गा, IAST: Durgā), is identified as the principal Hindu goddess of war, strength, and protection. The legend centers around combating evils and demonic forces that threaten peace, prosperity, and Dharma the power of good over evil.
Once the Durga Puja has been held, it must be held each and every year. No exceptions. As long as it is done before the end of the year.
For the Durga Puja, it is specifically stated that all dessert must be offered. I think that Durga must love sweets 😉. These desserts or sweets are called Persad/Prasad.
Prasada (in Sanskrit and Kannada), Prasadam (in Malayalam, Telugu, and Tamil, and Sanskrit), Prasad (in Bengali and Hindi) or Mahaprasada (in Odia) is a material substance of food, is sweet or any edible thing, that is a religious offering in both Hinduism and Sikhism. It is distributed to people after worshiping god as a blessing of God. And it literally means a gracious gift. It denotes anything, typically an edible food, that is first offered to a deity, saint, Perfect Master, or an avatar, and then distributed in His or Her name to their followers or others as a good sign.
This is not just a food to eat, but the physical presence of Gods blessing to you.
Below are the different desserts that are offered:
These desserts are also prepared for sacrifice in the mandir or for church services (also called Katha)
Some of the pictures are from Wikipedia: Durga Puja