Goddess Parvati is one of the most prominent and important gods in Hindu mythology. She is worshipped as the wife of Lord Shiva and the mother of Lord Ganesha. Often idols and portraits depict her sitting beside lord Shiva with Lord ganesha sitting on her knees. The idol of Goddess Parvati is usually made of bronze or stone and is depicted with her wearing a red color saree. When alone one can see her having four arms but along with Lord Shiva she usually has only two hands. She is thought to be one of the most powerful Goddess and is worshipped by married women to seek blessings in married life
There are various legends which are associated with Goddess Parvati. One of the famous ones is that long back Sati and Lord Shiva got married. However, this marriage took place against the wishes of Sati's father Daksha. As a result, Daksha and Lord Shiva never got along well with each other. One day Daksha organized a huge yajna to which he did not invite lord Shiva. Shiva also did not go there in his own ego. As a result, Sati decided to burn herself. After her death, Lord Shiva got very sad and left all the worldly pleasures. He started living in the mountains and indulged in deep meditations. As a result sati was re-born in the form of Goddess Parvati which essentially means one who stays at Parvat or mountain. There is yet another legend which unfolds the story that Goddess Parvati underwent deep penance in order to get married to Lord Shiva. She was disturbed in many forms but she did not deter. This pleased Lord Shiva and hence he married her and brought her to Mount Kailash. Since then she has been worshipped as the wife of Lord Shiva
Goddess Parvati is a form of Shakti and hence here temples are also sometimes referred to as Shaktipeeths. Four of her shrines are very famous all over the world-the first one being in the world heritage site of Khajuraho as per UNESCO. Here Goddess Parvati is worshipped along with Lord Shiva. Here other three important and famous shrines are located in the city of Kashi, Gaya and Kedarnath. Her temples are usually present all over India spreading across the length and breadth of the country.
One of the most popular and famous puja dedicated to Goddess Parvati is the festival of teej. This is usually observed by women by keeping a fast for the long life of their husbands. This puja benefits one by endowing them with blessings of a happy and peaceful married life. Navratri is another festival where in all the nine days different forms of Parvati are worshipped by performing different kinds of rituals. Gauri festival is also an important festival which marks the end of the harvest season and people worship the Goddess for the amazing harvest. Gauritritya is a less known festival which is usually observed in the southern India and is purely dedicated to Goddess Parvati.