Saturday, August 7, 2010
The Hindu Goddess Kali is termed the 'divine mother' because of her unique link with humans..!!!
Kali: The dark mother
Mother is the name of God in the lips and heart of children. The Hindu Goddess Kali is termed the 'divine mother' because of her unique link with humans. Though ferociously portrayed with a demon head, dark complexion and four arms, with a sword in one hand and the head of a demon in another, devotees harness a very loving and intimate bond with the goddess much like a bond between a mother and her children.
Dakshineshwar Kali temple in Calcutta
Kali's birth is recorded in the Devi Mahatmya, a text of the 5th - 6th century AD. She was depicted as being born from the brow of Goddess Durga during one of her battles with evil. The story relates that Kali was so involved with the killing that she lost control and began destroying everything in sight.
Finally Lord Shiva had to throw himself under her feet to put an end to her actions.
This action is captured in most of the images which shows a shocked Kali, her tongue stuck out and one leg poised over Shiva's chest.
Though Kali is represented with fierce features two of her hands which do not hold grotesque symbols bless her worshippers. She has two dead heads for earrings, a string of skulls for a necklace and a girdle comprising human hands as her garment. Her eyes are red and blood is splattered all over her body.
Kali's complexion signifies her all-embracing and transcendental nature. Her garland of 50 skulls stands for the letters in the Sanskrit alphabet while her girdle implies work and liberation from the cycle of karma.
Her white teeth show her inner purity and her tongue indicates her omnivorous nature. Her sword destroys false consciousness and the eight bonds that bind us.
Her three eyes symbolize the past, present and future, an aspect which is denoted by her name. Known as the goddess for time and change Kali takes many forms and names: Shyama, Adya Ma, Chamundi, Tara Ma and Dakshina Kalika. Bhadra Kali is known for her gentle nature while Shyamashana Kali lives only in the cremation ground.