Durga is a major deity in Hinduism. She is worshipped as a principal aspect of the mother goddess Devi and is one of the most popular and widely revered among Indian divinities. She is associated with protection, strength, motherhood, destruction and wars. Her legend centres around combating evils and demonic forces that threaten peace, prosperity, and Dharma the power of good over evil. Durga is believed to unleash her divine wrath against the wicked for the liberation of the oppressed, and entails destruction to empower creation.
Historians of religion and art tend to trace the earliest depiction of Durga to the seals of Indus Valley Civilization. However this claim lacks direct visual evidence from the site. There are several hints to her in the early Vedic texts and by the time of the epics, she emerges as an independent deity. According to Hindu legends, Durga is created by the gods to defeat the demon Mahishasura, who could be only killed by a female. Durga is seen as a motherly figure and often depicted as a beautiful woman, riding a lion or tiger, with many arms each carrying a weapon and often defeating demons.