Devi Mahatmya ~ Durga Saptashati     3 posts


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Devi Mahatmya ~ Durga Saptashati

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I am the Queen, the gatherer-up of treasures, most thoughtful, first of those who merit worship.
Thus gods have established me in many places with many homes to enter and abide in.
Through me alone all eat the food that feeds them, – each man who sees, breathes, hears the word outspoken.
They know it not, yet I reside in the essence of the Universe. Hear, one and all, the truth as I declare it.
I, verily, myself announce and utter the word that gods and men alike shall welcome.
I make the man I love exceeding mighty, make him nourished, a sage, and one who knows Brahman.
I bend the bow for Rudra [Shiva], that his arrow may strike, and slay the hater of devotion.
I rouse and order battle for the people, I created Earth and Heaven and reside as their Inner Controller.
On the world's summit I bring forth sky the Father: my home is in the waters, in the ocean as Mother.
Thence I pervade all existing creatures, as their Inner Supreme Self, and manifest them with my body.
I created all worlds at my will, without any higher being, and permeate and dwell within them.
The eternal and infinite consciousness is I, it is my greatness dwelling in everything.

~ Devi Sukta, Rigveda 10.125.3 – 10.125.8. ~

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Devi Mahatmya ~ Durga Saptashati

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To Her who presides over the elements and the senses and is ever present in all beings, to the all-pervading Devi, salutations again and again. To her who pervades this entire world and abides in the form of consciousness, salutation to her, salutation to her, salutation to her, again and again.

(5.77-80)

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Devi Mahatmya ~ Durga Saptashati

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Jai Maa Durga! ૐ
' The Nature of Mother '

|| MahAAmayanubhavena yatha manvantAridhipaH sa babhUva mahA baho savarnisthanayoraveH ||

The manvanthara before Savarni’s was the swarochisha manvanthara, where we find the story of a king who goes out for a hunt. In fact, his kingdom has been usurped by his ministers and he has had to run away. On the pretext of this royal hunt he escapes into the forest, where he meets a vaishya, a merchant. The king’s name is Suratha and the vaishya’s name is Samadhi. The king goes to a place where a Muni, a sage, is staying. He likes the place. The Muni says, “Sit down and stay awhile.” Free food is provided there; free everything – no worries. So the king settles in.

Then this vaishya comes along with a similar experience – he has been thrown out by his family. The king asks him why he is so sad, and he replies, “What can I do? I’ve been cast away by my family; they only want my money; they don’t want me.” The king explains that the same thing has happened to him as well and says, “Let’s find out why this is happening to us! Why all this misery?”

The king adds, “I came to this ashram in order to live here peacefully, but my memories of the past – like whether my war-elephant is getting the proper food or not – are still troubling me. Moreover, I used to take such great care in collecting money from my subjects – and now, whether my ministers are spending the money wisely or not, I don’t know! These are the kinds of questions that are bothering me, and I just can’t get over them no matter how hard I try.” He says, “Let’s go and ask this Muni for a solution to this problem.”

So the king tells the Muni the story of the vaishya, and he tells his own story, and then he says, “I’m not able to forget the people who left me behind. What is that all about? I know that they are ignorant and they’ve cast me aside; but still, I can’t shake off my affection for them. How can I get rid of this affliction?”

The Muni replies, “It is true. It is Maha Maya.” Then he adds, “Let me tell you a story.” (This is the beauty of our culture; they always tell stories! And the stories are not without purpose either – they each have a purpose and a moral, and each one is true!)

|| JnaninAmapi chetAmsi DevI BhagavathI hi sA balAdhakruShya mohAya mahA mayA prayaChati. ||

He continues, “Even the greatest among the wise, even God Himself, is by Her power transformed into a small puppet that She plays with in Her hands.”

|| MahA MAya prabhAvena samsAra sthithi kArina ||

“She creates the samsara and She maintains it.”

|| Thannathra vismaya karyo yoga nidrA jagath patheH ||

“But don’t be surprised at Her behavior. It is simply Her nature; what can we do about it? She creates the world, She sustains it and She causes us to get attached to it.” The Muni then gives an example: “Look at that bird. It is almost dead of hunger, and yet it’s still flying off to find food for its children.”

|| Kena mokshadhrutAn mohAt pIDyamAna nabhikShudhA. ||

“Though it is dying of hunger, it still tries to feed its children – sacrificing itself for the sake of others out of compassion. The nature of Mother is compassion and that is what drives this world. Therefore, don’t be surprised; it is natural. You don’t have to put yourself down just because you’re thinking about these things all the time. It is simply Her nature.”

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