Lakshmi – The Goddess of Abundance ( Navarathri Special2)

Discussion in 'Chitvish on Hindu Culture & Vedanta' started by Chitvish, Oct 15, 2007.

  1. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Goddess Lakshmi in the Hindu pantheon of gods and goddesses is personified as the goddess of fortune and also as the embodiment of loveliness, grace and charm. Being the power and consort of VishNu, the preserver, she is represented as the power of multiplicity also. She is as inseparable from VishNu as speech from meaning or good deeds from righteousness. He represents all that is masculine and she, all that is feminine.

    Money is also sacred in our culture because it is a symbol of Goddess Lakshmi and so we never deliberately step on a currency note. Lakshmi stands not only for wealth but also for all the resources. Money, skill, time, manpower – all of these are resources. They are all Lakshmi and we look upon them as sacred.

    Lakshmi is usually described as enchantingly beautiful and standing on a lotus, and holding two lotuses in each of her two hands. It is because of this, she is named as Padma or Kamala. Very often, elephants ar shown on either side, emptying pitchers of water over her her. While in the company of VishNu, she is shown only with two hands.
    When worshipped in a temple, she is seen seated on a lotus throne, with four hands holding padma, sankha, amrithakalasha and bilwa fruit.

    Her four hands signify her power to grant the four human goals ( dharma – righteousness, artha, - wealth, kama – desires and moksha – liberation).
    She is shown to have pink complexion which shows her compassion for creatures since she is the mother of all.

    Even though in common parlance, Lakshmi is connected with wealth, she is worshipped in eight aspects. Thus she is vested with the powers of fulfilling the entire gamut of deires from the mundane to the spritual, of a sincere devotee. As she is omnipotent, she is capable of fulfilling all materialistic desires for enjoyment in this world as also liberation. It is reiterated in spiritual texts that she is easily pleased and quickly bestows grace. Lakshmi is thus the repository of all auspicious qualities.

    The owl is shown as her mount in some sculptural depictions. It may look odd and strange that an ugly bird owl should be shown as the carrier of the goddess of beauty and fortune ! Let us analyse the meaning to appreciate this reason better. In Sanskrit, owl is known as uluka which is one of the names of Indra, the king of gods. He personifies all the wealth, power and glory that a living being can aspire for. So, the goddess of multiplicity could not nhave chosen a better person to ride on !

    Kanakadhara stotram is composed by Sri Adishankara and a famous shloka for Lakshmi.
    I wish to conclude with the first stanza of the same, enchantingly translated by Kavignar Kannadasan:
    [FONT=TSCu_Paranar]மாலவன் மார்பில் நிற்கும் மங்கலக் கமலச் செல்வி ![/FONT]
    [FONT=TSCu_Paranar]மரகத மலரில் மொய்க்கும் மாணிக்கச் சுரும்பு போன்றாய்[/FONT]
    [FONT=TSCu_Paranar]நீலமா மேகம் போல நிற்கின்ற திருமாலுந்தன்[/FONT]
    [FONT=TSCu_Paranar]நேயத்தால் மெய் சிலிர்த்து நிகரிலாச் செல்வம் கொண்டான்.[/FONT]
    [FONT=TSCu_Paranar]மாலவன் மீது வைத்த மாயப்பொன் விழிஇ ரண்டை[/FONT]
    [FONT=TSCu_Paranar]மாதுநீ என்னிடத்தில் வைத்தனை என்றால் நானும்[/FONT]
    [FONT=TSCu_Paranar]காலமா கடலில் உந்தன் கருணையால் செல்வம் பெற்று[/FONT]
    [FONT=TSCu_Paranar]கண்ணிறை வாழ்வு கொள்வேன், கண் வைப்பாய் கமலத்தாயே ![/FONT]

    [FONT=TSCu_Paranar][/FONT]
    For shlokas on Lakshmi,
    Please go to
    Navarathri Shlokas (daily chanting)
    Navratri Shlokas (Lakshmi)
    Shri Mahalakshmi 108 Namavalis
    Siddhalakshmi Shlokam
    Lakshmi Ashtothram
    Ashtalakshmi Stotram[FONT=TSCu_Paranar][/FONT]

    For the picture of Lakshmi (by Ravi Varma, which is very famous) & Ashtalakshmi, please go to
    http://www.indusladies.com/forums/temples-and-deities/8703-exclusive-pdf-files-deity-pictures-14.html#post155795
    http://www.indusladies.com/forums/temples-and-deities/8703-exclusive-pdf-files-deity-pictures-14.html#post155796

    Love,
    Chithra.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2007
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  2. vidhi

    vidhi Senior IL'ite

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    Dear Chith

    You have given a very beautiful description of the Goddess Lakshmi. The information about the owl is something new to me which I am hearing it for the first time. The pictures is very beautiful and divine. Nice of you to share with us.

    Love
    vidhi
     
  3. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Vidhi,
    Thankyou for your (as usual) prompt F B !
    The mention of owl is less in our "tales" & hence I made a special mention about it !
    Love,
    Chithra.
     
  4. Shanvy

    Shanvy IL Hall of Fame

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    hi chitramam,

    The picture of lakshmi is very beautiful. The explanation is also very simple and clear.


    Knew that her vehicle was owl. but never new the exact appropriateness and reason behind..

    I hope lakshmi visits and bestows her blessings on all of us....
     
  5. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Shanti,
    Thanks for your appreciation of the post ! :)
    We need Lakshmi as well as Sarasvathi's blessings through out our lives !
    Love,
    Chithra.
     
  6. sudhavnarasimhan

    sudhavnarasimhan Silver IL'ite

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    Hi Chitra,
    Been on this page for 4 hrs.....something or other disturbing me....finally read the post! Interesting....me too i did not know abt the Owl!

    Good one.....enjoyed your writing!:clap
     
  7. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Sudha,
    Thaankyou for joining here.
    In one page for 4 hrs??!! You seem to be too busy !
    Love,
    Chithra.
     
  8. Anandchitra

    Anandchitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Chithra
    Thank you again. I was looking forward to this post.
    I was not aware of the owl at all. After your explanation it
    does seem to be the vehicle of choice. Her four hands signify
    dharma, artha, kama and moksha. thereby teaching us mere
    mortals we dont have to look anywhere else but to God
    to reach us to salvation holding our hands and helping us
    cross this sea of life where artha, kama live.
    It is so pleasing to the heart to read about our mother goddesses
    since they personify what we aspire for and when you pray
    to the goddess you can feel the love kind and warmth of
    mothers embrace.imagination running wild????
    In the kanakadhara stotram the lines
    மாதுநீ என்னிடத்தில் வைத்தனை என்றால்
    one of the lines thats so packed with meaning.
    it will be inferred as per a devotees wish
    for someone loving wealth they can demand that
    for some other desire that can be demanded too
    but me I know what I will demand (request)
    to attacin moksha and forever lie at her feet.
     
  9. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear AC,
    My post seems to have sent you into a "thinking spree" ??!!
    I am happy since that is the reaction, I expect !:)
    You admire the first para of Kannadasan's Ponmazai so much ! The entire poem translated in tamil by him is so full of "inimai" that, it is my great favourite !
    Thanks, AC.
    Love
    To
    Chitra
    From
    Chithra.
     
  10. sujakalyan

    sujakalyan Silver IL'ite

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    Dear all,

    Im posting mahalakshmi ashtaka stotram and its meaning

    MAHAALAKSHMI ASHTAKA STOTRAM

    Namastestu Mahaamaaye Shreepeete Surapoojite
    Shankha Chakra Gadaa Haste Mahaalakshmi Namostu Te
    .


    Meaning:O Mahaamaaya, abode of fortune, worshipped by the Gods, I salute Thee. O Mahaalakshmi, one who has conch, disc and mace in Her hands, obeisance to Thee.

    Namaste Garudaroode Koalaasura Bhayankari
    Sarva Paapa Hare Devi, Mahaalakshmi Namostu Te
    .


    Meaning:My salutations to Thee, who rides Garuda and are a terror to demon Kola; O Devi Mahaalakshmi, remover of all miseries, my obeisance to Thee.

    Sarvajne Sarva Varade Sarva Dushta Bhayankari
    Sarva Duhkha Hare Devi Mahaalakshmi Namostu Te.


    Meaning:O Devi Mahaalaksmi, who is the embodiment of knowledge, giver of all boons, a terror to all the wicked, remover of all sorrows, obeisance to Thee.

    Siddhi Buddhi Prade Devi Bhukti Mukti Pradaayini
    Mantra Moorthe Sadaa Devi Mahaa Lakshmi Namostu Te
    .


    Meaning:O Devi, You give success and intelligence and worldly enjoyment and liberation (as well). Thou hast always the mystic symbols (Mantra) as Thy form, O Mahaalakshmi, obeisance to Thee.

    Aadyantarahite Devi Aadya Shakte Maheshvari
    Yogaje Yogasambhoote Mahaalakshmi Namostu Te
    .


    Meaning:O Devi, Maheshwari, You are without a beginning or an end , You are the Primeval energy, You are the greatest ruler, You are born of Yoga. O Mahaalakshmi, obeisance to Thee.

    Sthoola Sookshmah Mahaa Raudre Mahaa Sakthe Mahodaye
    Mahaa Paapa Harey Devi Mahaalakshmi Namostu Te.


    Meaning:O Mahaalakshmi, You are both gross and subtle, most terrible (for the wicked), You are the embodiment of great power and prosperity and You are remover of all sins, obeisance to Thee.

    Padmaasanasthite Devi Parabrahma Svaroopini
    Paramesi Jaganmaata, Mahalakshmi
    Namostu Te
    .

    Meaning:O Devi, You are seated on the lotus, You are the Supreme Brahman, You are the great Lord and Mother of the universe, O Mahaalakshmi, obeisance to Thee.

    Svetaambaradhare Devi Naanaalankaara Bhooshite
    Jagatsthite Jaganmaatah, Mahaalakshmi Namostu Te


    Meaning:O Devi, You are dressed in white garments and decked with various kinds of ornaments, Thou art the mother of the universe and its support, O Mahaalakshmi, obeisance to Thee.

    Mahaalakshmyaastaka Stottram Yad Pated Bhaktiman Naraha.
    Sarva Siddhimavaapnoti Mahaalakshmi Prasaadataha
    .


    Meaning:Whoever with devotion reads this hymn to Mahaalakshmi composed in eight stanzas, attains all success through the Grace of Mahaalaksmi.

    Ekakaale Patennityam Mahaapaapa Vinaashanam
    Dvikaalam Yah Patennityam Dhana Dhaanya Samanvitaha


    Meaning:Whoever reads this hymn at least once a day will have all their sins destroyed; those who recite it twice will be blessed with wealth and prosperity.

    Trikaalam Yah Patennityam Mahaa Shatru Vinaashanam
    Mahaalakshmir Bhavennityam Prasannaa Varadaa Shubhaa


    Meaning:Those who recite this three times in a day will have all their enemies destroyed. They will be always be blessed by the Goddess Mahalakshmi.
     

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