The relevance of the word ‘Dashami’ is straightforward. On the tenth day of the ‘Suklapaksha'(lunar fortnight) of the Bengali month Ashwin, Devi Durga leaves for Kailas, the mountain home (Devi’s Husband’s place). It is the day when the idol of the goddess goes to the ‘Visarjan’. The day is celebrated in various parts of India and Nepal. But why is this ‘Dashami’ called ‘Vijaya’? Many mythological stories come out.
In the Puranas, the story of the Mahisasur-Vadh states that Devi won against him on the tenth day after fighting for 9 days and 9 nights. According to the story the goddess Sri Sri Chandi appeared in the Krishna Chaturdashi of the month of Ashwin, and in Shukla-Dashami Devi does ‘vadh’ of the Mahisasur. Vijaya Dasmi marks this victory.
However, in other parts of northern and central India, ‘Dussehra’ is celebrated on this day. The word ‘Dussehra’ originates from the Sanskrit ‘Dashahar’, which signifies the death of Dasanan Ravana. In the Valmiki Ramayana, it is said that Ram does ‘vadh’ of Ravana on the tenth day of Bengali month Ashwin in Shukla Paksha. We can also link this mythological story in the ‘Raghuvamsam’ of Kalidas, ‘Ramcharitmanas’ of Tulsidas, or ‘Ramchandrika’ of Keshavdas that after the Ravana-vadh, on the 10th day of the Bengali month Ashwin; Ramchandra, Sita Debi and Laxman returned to Ayodhya.
Also in the Mahabharata, it is said that at the end of the 12 years of ‘bananas’ and 1 year of ‘agyatvas’, the Pandavas recovered their weapons hidden in the ‘shomi’ tree and declared their true identity in the Shukla Dashami. This mention in the Mahabharata also increases the significance of Vijaya Dashami.
‘Vijaya Dashami’ is a day of joy, at the same time sadness because Maa Durga leaves her father’s house for another year. But above all, it is a day of good will’s victory over evil energy.