Aug 6, 2015

The glories of Mahavidya Kali

"In the Maha Nirvana Tantra, Shiva praises Kali in the following way:

“At the dissolution of things, it is kala [time] that will devour all. But it is Kali that devours even time, the original form and devourer of all things. Resuming yourself after the great dissolution, you retain your own nature, dark and devoid of form. There, you remain ineffable and inconceivable. Source of all forms, you are the multiform power of Maya [illusion], the beginning of all, creatrix, protectress, and destructress."

In the Adbhuta Ramayana, Kali appears through Sita, wife of the avatar Rama, and protects Rama. After Rama has defeated the demon king, Ravana, he and Sita are returning to Ayodhya where they will be installed on the throne and rule the kingdom. But just as they are entering the forest, another demon jumps out of hiding with the intention of killing Rama. Startled, Rama momentarily freezes. Instantly, Sita transforms into Kali and consumes the demon on the spot. This shows that Sita, who is the Source of even Goddess Lakshmi, also has the potential to become Kali when necessary. This story provides a wonderful example of the mutability of the Great Feminine, who can appear in any form at any time according to the need of the situation.

In some works called the tantras (treatises on the various paths to power and attainment including spiritual liberation), Kali is represented as supreme power. In the Nirvana Tantra, Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva are said to rise from her like bubbles from the sea. Both the Piccila Tantra and the Nigama Kalpataru proclaim that Kali’s mantras are the most potent of all. It is true that every scripture declares that the subject of its writing embodies the supreme power, but there is wide agreement among a cross-section of teachings that the mystic fifteen-syllabled Kali mantra (Om Hrim Srim Klim Adya Kalike Parameshwari Swaha) is among a handful of the most powerful mantras of all.

Here, Kali is the essence of everything that is forbidden, and her image is used as a focus to attain a transformation in a unity of opposites: unity of the sacred and the profane, of right and wrong, of virtue and dishonor. In the classical practice of the left-hand path, Kali is the dark and formless nature of the universe within which beings and planets wander. The gods are no more than the water collected in the hoofprint of a passing cow, while Kali is the ocean itself. All else, even the masculine trilogy of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva, is incidental."

I bow down to Adya Shakti, my Devi.

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