Are we preparing for bigger blessings from Goddess Shakti?

Our monetary resources, intellectual capabilities, soul force, and physical strength can all be seen as blessings from a greater infinite source of energy, personified as Goddess Shakti. Though we all like to possess these forms of energy, merely having them does not confirm that we have the ability to utilize them. While it is not easy to earn money, it is more difficult to spend it. While it is somewhat difficult to gain popularity and political power, it is extremely difficult to guide humanity.

As we spend time on earth, we may accumulate large amounts of material power or even engage in spiritual practices to obtain mystical powers (siddhi) that can enable us to control selected natural phenomena. But the training needed to use resources for our own good is independent of the amassed raw energy and is a separate blessing from the Goddess. This piece of software for the mind is not something we can immediately acquire, but it has to be gradually nurtured by monitoring our karma or selflessly remembering the Divine.

What can we, as beginners, do to learn the proper utilization of energy? We can probably start by watching where we spend our pocket money. Similarly, we can check if we turn off the fans and lights of our room as we exit it. Do we waste drinking water? Do we chat unnecessarily? In an arrangement where every electron is driven by the energy of the Goddess, such small steps can influence whether we will be able to make use of bigger blessings, material or spiritual, from Shakti once we become qualified for them. And who knows, our watchfulness may one day make us eligible for her highest blessing: the knowledge of our true nature.

Goddess Kali: The One beyond thought

Kali, the Goddess with the shine of a blue lotus, is the Energy of Shiva. She is the form of Brahman for which birth, aging, death, and regeneration – are merely dance steps.

If I got this right, the Yoga Vasishtha holds that the universe in Kali’s body resembles a reflection in a mirror; it is illusory and yet true for the one who believes it to be true. If this sounds too complicated, we can reread it in even simpler words: “Kali is everything.” To memorize this should be easy but to understand its depth may again take most of us more than a lifetime and a darshan, like the one Ramakrishna Paramhansa experienced.

Luckily, for the common person, there is even a simpler option: to admit that we know nothing about Her. In line with this feel, many devotees standing in front of Her idol are often heard saying, “Mother, we do not understand much, but we are in Your refuge. Could you please take care of us?” The good part about this popular feel is its honesty, for admitting our inability to know Her may be, at times, much closer to Brahman than believing that we in the process of understanding the Great Illusion. No matter which approach we choose to worship Her, the intellectual or the emotional, it is important to be true, especially when we are communicating with Someone beyond thought…and time.

Navaratri: Acknowledging Energy

The second Navaratri of the year, a nine-day festival of the lunar month Ashwin, is currently being observed. These auspicious days are sufficient to remind the entire Hindu population that God can be feminine as well. God is worshipped as Mother Goddess Durga, who is Brahman Herself and the combined form of Saraswati, Lakshmi, and Kali – the trinity of Shakti, the Primordial Energy.

If you are new to the concept of Shakti, you can grasp the concept from the material end. Whether it is the energy due to gravity, the nuclear energy of stars, the energy stored in black holes, the electromagnetic energy of a lightning bolt, or the chemical energy in living cells, together they all contribute to the total energy of the universe. Hindus like to believe that the total energy of the universe is a part and physical manifestation of a greater infinite energy. They personify this infinite source of all energy and power as Mother Durga, or Devi, and worship Her for what She does for us. Her acts include everything from nurturing us to ‘destroying’ the entire universe, though She later re-manifests it according to Her own calendar. For this reason, to some spiritual seekers, all natural phenomena represent the functioning of the Goddess.

Because the Devi can supposedly bestow anything the seeker wishes for, people, while acknowledging Her, often make requests for whatever is lacking in their own lives. At times, they may make requests for a power, such as money, intellect, or physical strength, which can lead to moderate amounts of success on this planet. Others request Her for realization and deliverance from the universe. A few of Her favorite kids leave it all to Her and adore Her just for being there for all of us.

%d bloggers like this: