Chandi (the fierce) is a name for the goddess DURGA, when she is killing the demon MAHISHA-SURA. This name is used primarily in the 700-verse poem chanted in her honor. This poem, called either Chandi Stotra (Praise of Chandi) or Durga Saptashati (Seven hundred verses to Durga), forms an episode of 13 chapters in the Markandeya Purana, also known as the Devi Mahatmya (Glory of the Goddess). It describes Durga’s victory over Mahishasura, a demon with the head of a water buffalo, and his demon hordes. It is read daily at Durga temples and is always recited at the annual celebration of Durga PUJA in the fall of each year.
   Further reading: Thomas B. Coburn, Devi-Mahatmya: The Crystalization of the Goddess Tradition (Delhi: Moti-lal Banarsidass, 1984); Swami Jagadisvarananda, The Devi Mahatmyam, or, Sri Durga-Saptashati: 700 Mantras on Shri Durga (Madras: Sri Ramakrishna Math, 1969); Satya Nand Sarawati, trans., Candi (Martinez, Calif.: Devi Mandir, 1989).

Encyclopedia of Hinduism. . 2007.

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