saundaryalaharI - 7 (fwd)

Ravisankar S. Mayavaram msr at COMCO.COM
Fri Dec 24 14:20:30 CST 1999

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Fri, 24 Dec 1999 09:28:58 -0330 (NST)
From: Gummuluru Murthy <gmurthy at>
To: ambaa-l at
Subject: [ambaa-l] saundaryalaharI - 7

shri lalitAyai namaH

kvanatkA~ncIdAmA karikalabhakumbhastanabharA (natA)
parikshINamadhye pariNatasaraccandravadanA
dhanurbANAn.h pAshaM-sR^iNimapi dadhAnA karatalaiH
purastAdAstAM naH puramathiturAhopuruShikA             7

kvanat.h kA~ncIdAmA: one who has (is adorned by) a jingling girdle
kari kalabha: young elephant
kumbha: temples (mastaka)
stanabharA (natA):   weight of the breasts (slightly bent under the
                       weight of the breasts)
parikshINa madhye:  one who is slim (slender) in the waist
pariNata:  fully developed
sharat.h candra vadanA:  with face like the autumn full moon
dhanur.h bANAn.h pAshaM sR^iNiM api:  bow, arrows, noose and
                                        a~Nkusha also
dadhAna:  holding
karatalaiH:  in the hands
purastAt.h:  in front
naH:  of us
astAM:  let Her manifest, dwell, settle comfortably
puraM mathitu:   the one who churned the three cities (shiva)
aho puruShikA:   the I-consciousness (the ahaMkArarUpinI of shiva)

May Thou; with breasts like the temples of a young elephant;
with a slender waist adorned by a jingling girdle-string;
with face blooming like the autumnal full moon;
with four hands holding bow, arrows, noose and the goad;
may Thou, the pride of shiva, manifest, settle comfortably before us.


This verse serves as an introduction to the forthcoming verse
'sudhAsiMdhormadhye' and portrays the Divine Mother in Her gross
(sthUla) form in distinction to the subtle (sUkshma) and sublime
(para) forms. In this gross form, physical features such as hands,
feet etc are attributed to the divine form. This facilitates
contemplation by the sAdhaka.

The devotees meditate on shrIdevI's form and worship Her mentally
in the various cakrAs inside the human body. At each end of the
spinal cord (merudanDa) that runs from the skull downwards
to the anus, there is a thousand-petalled lotus. The one at the
lower end is called the kula-sahasrAra, and the other at the upper
end, almost at the centre of the brain, is known as the akula-
sahasrAra. Between these two thousand petalled lotuses and along
the spinal cord (merudanDa), there are six lotuses. They are
(1) mUlAdhAra - a four-petalled lotus, a little above the anus,
(2) svAdhiShThAna - a six-petalled lotus at the root of the genital
organ, (3) maNipUraka- a two-petalled lotus at the navel,
(4) anAhata - a twelve-petalled lotus in the heart region,
(5) vishuddhi - a sixteen-petalled lotus in the region of the neck,
and (6) AjnA - a two-petalled lotus between the eye-brows.

Satisfied with the devotee's worship, shrIdevI manifests Herself
to the sAdhaka in the maNipUraka cakra. From there in Her upward
move to the akula-sahasrAra (the upper thousand-petalled lotus),
she is conducted through the anAhata cakra. Her manifestation in
the maNipUraka cakra and Her stay in the anAhata cakra are described
in this verse.

This form of shrIdevI is the most popular and appealing one to the
devotees of the Divine Mother. There are four modes of worship of
shrIdevI: meditation upon (i) sthUla (gross) form, (ii) sUkshma (subtle)
form, (iii) sUkshmatara (subtler), and (iv) sUkshmatama (subtlest).
LalitAsahasranAma, the thousand names of shrIlalitA describe these four
modes of worship. From lalitAsahasranAma, the forty names of shrIlalitA
from the twelfth name (nijAruNaprabhApUramajjadbrahmAnDa-manDalA) to the
fifty-first name (sarvAbharaNabhUShitA) describe the sthUla form of
shrIdevI. The three names from eighty-five
(srImadvAgbhavakUTaikaswarUpa-mukhapa~NkajA) to eighty-seven
(shaktikUTaikatApannakaTyadhobhAgadhAriNI) describe the subtle form.
Names eighty-eight and eighty-nine (mUlamantrAtmikA and
mUlakUTatrayakaLebarA) describe the subtler form. Names ninety to one
hundred and eleven (from kulAmr^itaikarasikA to bisatantutanIyasI)
describe the sUkshmatama (sublime) form which is the kunDalinIrUpa of

KvanatkA~ncIdAmA: jingling girdle-string - belt-like gold waist ornament
(called vaDDAnam in Telugu) with small tinkling gold bells attached.

pariNata sharat-candra-vadanA:   shrIdevI's face is compared to the
autumnal full moon (of the sharad R^itu with the intention of bringing
out the glory, calmness and grace of Her form. The sharad R^itu is the
quietest part of the year in India with fairly uniform temperature throughout.
This period, extending roughly from October to December will have usually
clear skies with the moon shining brightly at night. Autumnal full moons
are special in mid-latitudes also. Here shrIdevI's face is compared to
this autumnal full moon. Also, compare shrIlalitAsahasranAma name

dhanurbANAn pAshaM sR^iNimapi dadhAnA karatalaiH: This line mentions the
weapons in shrIdevI's four hands. She carries in Her lower left arm the
sugarcane bow with a string of bees, in Her lower right arm the five
arrows of Kamala, Raktakairava, KahlAra, IndIvara and SahakAra flowers,
in Her upper left arm the pAsha, noose and in Her upper right arm the
a~Nkusha, goad [souvarNam pashA~Nkushau vAma dakshiNayorthyeyau).

The weapons, adorning the four hands of shrIdevI are in their sthUla
(gross) form. These weapons may alse b expressed in  the sUkshma (subtle)
and para (sublime) forms also. The subtle form of these weapons is said to
be their mantrAs. The sublime forms are: for the bow the manas;  for the
five arrows,  the five tanmAtrAs (sound, touch etc);  for the pAshA,
the passion;  and for a~Nkusha, the anger.

BhAvanopanishad says:

rAgaH pAshaH; dveSho a~NkushaH; shabdAdi pa~ncatanmAtraH pa~nca puShpabANAH;
mana ikshudhanuH.

LalitAsahasranAma says:

rAgaswarUpapashADhyA krodhAkArA~NkushojjvalA
manorUpekshukodanDA pa~ncatanmAtrasAyakA

purastAdAstAM naH: in front of us; i.e., in our hR^idayakamala, moving
from maNipUraka on to the anAhata of the heart lotus, while we are
meditating on devI.

PuramathiturahopuruShikA: The words puramathitu and ahopuruShikA literally
mean the pride of shiva. The basic devI mantrAs (three bIjAs) as a whole
are called tripuram.  Shiva is said to have churned the milk of the three
bIjAksharAs with his mind as the churning instrument.  As a result arose
the butter of shrIdevI's person (AkAra, swarUpa). Because of this, shiva
is known as tripuramathana.  This expression also suggests the inseparable
association of shiva and shakti, as already seen in verse 1. The compound
word ahopuruShikA indicates pride incarnate or I-consciousness of shiva.

This verse, giving the sthUla form of shrIdevI provides an excellent focus
for meditation on saguna brahman.

[Additional references used for the commentary on this verse:

Atma vijnAnamu (Science of the soul) in Telugu by shri swami
   Yogeswaranandji Maharaj, shri Sarada Yoga Mandir, Vijayawada

Spiritual Science by Swami Vishadananda, Ramakrishna Ashrama, Ottapalam]

Gummuluru Murthy

bhava shankara deshikame sharaNam

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