Navaratri and the Golden Age of the Devi

I asked Amma Sri Karunamayi in my Heart – how do I truly honor the Divine Feminine? This question, of course, was inspired by the current presidential election in the United States when we finally may have a woman in the position of Commander-in-Chief.  Fact is the Divine Feminine has been quite suppressed by the patriarchy throughout the world for so very long and I’m not entirely convinced that putting females in positions designed by patriarchies is really going to honor the feminine.  The old order has been that if a woman wants to succeed in careers that have been designed by men for men, she really ought to become more “manly.” 

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I watch as Hillary Clinton tries to position herself in the consciousness of her constituents and as her publicists and advisors school her in ways to express herself, both in dress and speech.  She explained in Humans of New York that she clearly has no predecessors and has to create as she goes (men can be bullies in pulpits, women, not so much).  The government of the United States was designed by men for men.  I do trust Hillary Clinton to gracefully update the old antiquated design of the Founding Fathers’ government to include more Mothers and women in leadership positions.  And even the Founding Fathers understood the need for the Divine Feminine. There is a theory that  the masons, including George Washington, looked to the constellation of Virgo when building Washington, D.C.  All divinely masculine men worship the Goddess.

“Mr. Ovason also thinks Masonic surveyors lined up the Washington Monument, the Capitol and the White House into a rough triangle on the same alignment as Virgo’s major three stars. Pennsylvania Avenue as the main hypotenuse would be the route from which one could view those same stars from the Capitol every Aug. 10.” – Washington Times

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Amma Sri Karunamayi, 2016 Maha Maha Yajnam, SRIM Center, Atlanta, Georgia. Photo by Dakota Cheyenne

Of course with all teachers and Gurus, Amma included, the answer was not given to me bold-faced and written in black Sharpie across my T-shirt the moment I asked.  I even wonder whether or not I ask Amma questions in my Heart or if she puts them there.  But I do know that the answer that she gives all of us is to honor the Devi, honor the beautiful Goddesses of the Indian pantheon of the gods.  And what better time to do this than Navaratri, the nine days of worship of the Devi (Spring and Fall) when one chants the Chandi, Durga Saptasati or the Devi Mahatymam which describes the ferocity of the gentle Devis and how they annihilate the worst and most powerful demons.

And I have to say this, that in the question I asked Amma and in her gentle and clear prodding of my chanting consistently to the Devi through the Lalita Sahasranama, the Samputita Sri Suktam, the Mahishasura Mardini Stotram and the Khadga MalaI see that she is clearing the path to the golden age of the Devi, the awakening of the divine feminine in all beings.  The subtlest of answers lie in the Sanskrit texts themselves and the sounds they render into the atmosphere within, around, above and all around us.  We chant out loud in order to unite our bodies, minds, hearts and souls with the roar of the Devi, the HUM she renders to deafen and destroy the demons.

The Devi, the Goddess, is an archetype.  And perhaps this word, “archetype,” is difficult to comprehend.  But I understand the archetype to be something that permeates the psyche of all beings at once – the subtlest of vibrations of all of these Sanskrit texts chanted in unison throughout the img_1445world, awakens the sleeping giant divine feminine within all beings and exerts a force, subtler than the subtlest, greater than the greatest: a force we call Shakti.  I believe the answer is that this archetype is awakening as we speak and is ushering in the Golden Age of the Devi.  And that each of us with every little, tiny utterance of divine sound from any of these texts, collectively, in our own homes and in temples and ashrams everywhere are ensuring that the Devi is at peace in this current age, the yuga of darkness.

In the Devi Mahatmyam, the Goddess is the great benefactor, the Creator of the world as we see it.  If you have difficulties, she shows the path and ensures the way to victory.  She does this by killing demons.  She kills them in many, many ways.  She takes no prisoners.  It’s quite bloody and glorious.  The after-glow of Navaratri is both a purging of what is unnecessary and a peace with all that is.  And so the feminine wears beautiful dresses and jewels and rides lions while slaughtering demons.  Yes, of course.  What else would we do?

I could keep writing about these hymns but truly, reading my musings in English barely light a candle to their profound medicine when chanted.  Chant these hymns to understand how to honor the Divine Feminine – and, of course, we should not take their interpretations or meanings literally (especially in English.  God Bless the English language, it’s the one I’m most comfortable with for the time being, but it has a tough time articulating the poetry of the mystical, spiritual, soul-worlds of Eastern and South Asian spirituality).  

The literal interpretation of all major scriptures, of course, has been one of the main causes of trouble and suffering through all ages.  These are mystical texts that are much better understood in a meditative and loving environment.  This is the reason Guruji, Shri Brahmananda Sarasvati, founder and Guru of Ananda and Brahmananda ashrams in New York and San Francisco, insisted that we spend time with the Sanskrit rather than interpreting the texts – because literal interpretations are not quite “it.” The mind cannot comprehend the meaning of any of these texts.  You’ll know when the Golden Age of the Devi has arrived because this is when the mind no longer rules, but is subservient to the soul of the Universe, Mother Maya, her Self.

Victory.  Victory.  Victory.

Om shantih om,

Sumukhi

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