Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Mon Jun 30 21:20:19 CDT 1997

On Mon, 30 Jun 1997, Chelluri Nageswar Rao wrote:

>                                          Srim
> Namaste!
> I am posting this brief narration of saptasati at the request of Sri Vidya
> for the benefit of all interested members.
> Saptasati is very sacred not only for shakti upasakas but to all who believe
> in divine mother.

This is true.  In Gujarat Navaratri is the most important utsava of the
year and the Chandi Path (another name for the Saptashati) is listened to
attentively by everyone even if they are not Shaktas.  But as rewarding as
listening to the plain meaning is, there is much more punya for those who
understand the secret meaning.

> The name Saptasati implies that there are seven hundred
> mantras.  Such a group of mantras is called mantramala.  Saptasati is in
> Markandeya Purana which I believe is in Brahmanda Purana.  Brahmanda Purana
> (english version is available in all major librariries).   Thanks to Dr.Murty
> when he was at Univ. of Michigan he borrowed and loaned it to me.  If you
> have time try to read Brahmanda Purana.

The 700 mantras of Chandi Path are part of Markandeya Purana which is a
completely seperate work from Brahmand Purana.  Some of the auxillary
stotras (i.e. kavach, argal, and kilak) are parts of Brahmand Purana
though.  So is Lalita Sahasranam which is another very important stotra.

It is interesting to note however although the texts are Vedic, the
various vidhis associated with the path are Tantric.  Our tradition is
that they are according to Katyayini Tantra.  The great Shri Bhaskar Raya
also wrote his tika called Guptavati (expressing the hidden knowledge
contained within the mantras) according to this Tantra. Katyayini
Tantra belongs to the Shuddha or Dakshina Marg so it is fully in step with
Vedic teachings.

Jaldhar H. Vyas [jaldhar at]   And the men .-_|\ who hold
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