From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Śabarotsava literally means ‘festival of the śabaras aboriginals’.

Śabarotsava is a part of the Durgā-pūjā celebrations. On the Vijayadaśamī or the tenth day of Aśvayuja-śukla-pakṣa, bright half of Āśvayuja month, generally in October, the clay-image of Mother Durgā has to be ceremonially immersed in the waters of a river or a lake. After the immersion, when the crowd of devotees is returning, it is expected to behave like the śabaras or aboriginal tribes. Some of the items of such uncivilized behavior are:

  • Making merry to one’s heart’s content by throwing mud and dust
  • Abusing one another using offensive words
  • Singing erotic songs
  • Etc.

All, irrespective of their status in the society, were expected to join in this revelry, probably emphasizing the equality before the Mother of the universe.


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore

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