Kundalini Shakti is the supreme power to realize God in this very life, within the physical body

> My Guru
> Thou light of my life—thou camest to spread wisdom's glow over the
> path of my soul. Centuries of darkness dissolved before the shafts
> of thy luminous help. As a naughty baby, I cried for my Mother
> Divine, and She came to me as my Guru—Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi. At
> that meeting, O my Guru, a spark flew from thee, and the faggots of
> my God-cravings, gathered through incarnations, smouldered and
> blazed into bliss. All my questions have been answered through thy
> flaming, golden touch. Eternal, ever-present satisfaction has come
> to me through thy glory.
> My Guru, thou voice of God, I found thee in response to my soul-
> cries. Slumbers of sorrow are gone, and I am awake in bliss.
> If all the gods are displeased, and yet thou art pleased, I am safe
> in the fortress of thy pleasure. And if all the gods protect me by
> the parapets of their blessings, and yet I receive not thy
> benedictions, I am an orphan, left to pine spiritually in the ruins
> of thy displeasure. O Guru—thou didst bring me out of the
> bottomless pit of darkness into the paradise of peace.
> Our souls met after years of waiting. They trembled with an
> omnipresent thrill. We met here, because we had met before.
> Together we will fly to His shores, and then we will smash our
> planes of finitude forever and vanish into our infinite life.
> I bow to thee as the spoken voice of silent God. I bow to thee as
> the divine door leading to the temple of salvation. I bow to thee—
> to my Eternal Mother, Shri Lalita Devi, harbinger of human
> salvation; and I lay the flowers of my devotion at the feet of your
> incarnation, our supreme Guru and Mother, Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi!
> My Guru
> (The above is a slightly altered version of"Whispers from
> Eternity: A Book of Answered Prayers 1949 Edition by Paramhansa
> Yogananda)

India is a spiritual land of many cults and among them, the cult of Lalita has figured prominently. This paper attempts to study the cult of Lalita from a philosophical stand point. From the age of pre - historic India, the system of religious worship of Sakti began to grow.Sakti or Devi is the divinity of one Universal Goddess representing 'Prakriti' or Earth. We have a great range of literature dealing with the immanence of Saktism. Devi Mahatmyam, Devi Bhagavatam, Brahma Vivarta Purana and Skanda Maha Purana are some of the important Devi literatures. Out of the multifarious forms of Devi worship, two major forms have gained fame, still persisting in Modern India are Devi as Kali and Devi as Lalita. Among them Lalita form has attained recognition as 'Vaidic' or the higher philosophical order....

The worship of the primordial power as Mother is an ancient Indian tradition. [1] The upanishads declare that God is the first cause of Universe. The entire universe has arisen from God. Thus God is verily The Mother of Universe [2]. Sri Lalita Sahasranama begins with its first hymn as," Sri Matre Namaha"[3], means, Praise the God as Mother. By worshipping the God as Mother one approaches Her like a child. This way of worship removes the ego and the sense of 'I' from the devotee and he is free from the travails of Samsara.

The term Lalita means lovely, elegant or charming. The philosophical basis of Lalita cult is Sr Vidya, which is the ultimate knowledge. It is the realization of the soul through synthesis and reconciliation. Devi is the immanent soul of all souls. She is the infinite and eternal supreme Bliss. She induces the intuitive knowledge of God, which is herself. Sri Vidya shows the practical method to experience the truths of Vedanta as Brahma Vidya. The worship of Sakti, who is denoted by the syllable 'Sri' is called as Sri Vidya. The prayers are conducted by invoking Sri Lalita over the Sri Chakra which is the diagrammatic representation of the Universe, Mantra, Yantra and Tantra are the three aspects of Sri Vidya. Yantra is the form of symbolic representation of Mantra. Tantra consists of mind concentration; rituals and kundalini yoga.

Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa considered his body as the great Yantra. He praised Sakti as 'I am the device and you are the operator'. Bavanopanisad also defines the human body as the Yantra [4]. Sri Vidya treats equally all the paths to attain salvation. Brahmavidya and SriVidya are unique. Sri Lalita can be worshipped by both saguna and nirguna paths. Sri Lalita Cult accepts Bakti yoga, Karma yoga, Raja yoga and Jnana yoga. It considers both family life and hermitage as the ways to reach God. Sri Lalita is the form of all and accepts all forms of worship. The Kundalini Sakthi is the supreme power in the human body. It could be invoked to realize God in this very life, within the physical body. Sri Lalita Sahasranama mentions the names of Chakras present in the human body. According to it there are six chakras namely Muladara, Svadhistana, Manipura, Anahata, Visudhi and Ajna. The supreme locus of the Paramatma is in the Sahasrara. When the Kundalini Sakti is roused by appropriate means, it travels along the suksumana nadi in the vertebral column and reaches the Sahasrara. Thus Sri Lalita cult emphasizes the excellence of Yoga. It harmonizes Hata yoga, Raja yoga, Mantra yoga, Laya yoga, and Bhakti yoga. Negative notions on the reality of the world find a suitable answer in Sri Lalitha Cult. Seeing The Mother pervading everything, it sees the world not as a battle field but as a play ground. The Lalita doctrine explains Goddess Lalita as Cidswarupini and Anandarupini (pure and blissful consciousness). The material universe is nothing but her play (lila). Human beings can remain cheerful in the world, like her children playing by the side of their mother. Living exemplary lives, they finally find eternal rest on the lap of the Divine Mother [5]. The desireless devoted state of mind enables the devotee to experience her 'lila' in a calm and happy spirit.

Sri Lalita Sahasranama explains the Divine mother as"Siva Sakti Iykya Rupini"[6], the unification of Siva and Sakti. This union can be interpreted as the consciousness and its power or the blissful union of the soul with the over soul. Sri Lalita cult is the harmonious blend of all paths of spirituality which is called as"Samarasamarga" and leads to the ultimate realization. It inculcates the healthy physical and moral life with truth and love. Sri Vidya shows the path for transcendence with in this world. There is no discrimination of caste, creed or gender in Lalita cult. It proclaims that one who has not refrained from evil acts and who has no peace of mind and self control can not realize God by any means. Lalita cult consists of a great potential philosophical core and this is only a maiden attempt to point out the importance of the cult.


Foot Notes:
3 Anna, Sri Lalita Sahasranama Bashyam, Sri Ramakrishna Mutt, Chennai, 2000, p.116
4 Krishnan Namboodiri K.N, Message of The Vedas, op.cit. p.138
5,6 Anna, Sri Sri Lalita Sahasranama Bashyam, op.cit. p.231

110) Sri Kundalini
— She is coiled like a serpent. She is stated to assume 31/2 coils - the form in which Sri Lalita resides in sacrum bone of every human as potential state.

Sri Lalita Sahasranama

This family Woman Kundalini entering the royal road Susumna, Taking rest at intervals in the secret places (in the cakras), Embraces the supreme husband and causes the nectar to flow (in the Sahasrara.)

(source: R. A. Sastry, Lalita-Sahasranama, The Adyar Library and Research Centre, Madras, 1988.)

"That Kundalini in the Muladhara, sleeping in three and half coils, roused by Yogins, breaks through the six cakras as well as the three knots, called Brahma, Visnu, and Rudra-granthis and proceeding to the Sahasrara, from the moon's orb, which is the pericarp of the lotus, She causes nectar to flow.”

R. A. Sastry, Lalita-Sahasranama,
The Adyar Library and Research Centre, Madras, 1988, p 87.

The sakti called Kundalini in the form of a serpent, beautiful, fine as lotus, fibre, Resides in the Muladhara.
Biting the pericarp of the Muladhara which is like the pericarp of a lotus,
With its tail in its mouth and connected with the Brahmarandhra....
This energy unites with Siva in the thousand-petalled lotus.
This should be known as the supreme state (para),
And it is the cause of final beatitude.

Vamakesvaratantra, R. A. Sastry, Lalita-Sahasranama,
The Adyar Library and Research Centre, Madras, 1988, p 198.

May Kundalini, whose movements are secret and who by the blaze of the fire,
By the illumination of the sun and by the brightness of the moon,
Cause the ambrosia to flow through the seventy-two thousand channels, And make us contented.

Sukasamitha, R. A. Sastry, Lalita-Sahasranama,
The Adyar Library and Research Centre, Madras, 1988, p 198.

And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and the Lamb.
In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river was there the Tree of Life,
Which bare twelve manner of fruit every month: And the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.

Revelation 22:1-2

"The Spirit says in Revelation: "To him that overcomes, I will give to him to eat of the tree of life which is in the paradise of God.” (2: 7.) We understand from the previous paragraphs that this was a matter of inner conquest....

Revelation says later: "In the midst of its street, and of the river, on this side and on that side, [the] tree of life, producing twelve fruits, in each month yielding its fruits; and the leaves of the tree for healing of the nations"22: 2.) The first part is geometrically impossible since a single tree cannot find itself both in the middle and on both sides at the same time. We have to understand this as a symbol. It actually refers to the three channels: Sushumna (central), through which the Kundalini flows like a river and the side channels (Ida and Pingala.) Kundalini was worshiped as"Water of life"by the Templars and the Gnostics. However, as we are told at the end, the tree of life also serves to cure the nations. Yogis agree that the Kundalini awakening and the activation of the energetic system symbolised by the tree of life brings about both the physical healing as well as the spiritual one (supreme liberation, Moksha.)"

Dan Costian, Bible Enlightened, Computex Graphics, 1995, p. 47-8.

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