Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Chinamasta Mahavidya

One day Parvati went to bathe in the Mandakini River with her two attendants, Jaya and Vijaya. After bathing, the great goddess's color became black because she was sexually aroused. After some time, her two attendants asked her, "Give us some food. We are hungry." She replied, "I shall give you food but please wait." After awhile, again they asked her.

She replied, "Please wait, I am thinking about some matters." Waiting awhile, they implored her, "You are the mother of the universe. A child asks everything from her mother. The mother gives her children not only food but also coverings for the body. So that is why we are praying to you for food.

You are known for your mercy; please give us food." Hearing this, the consort of Shiva told them that she would give anything when they reached home. But again her two attendants begged her, "We are overpowered with hunger, O Mother of the Universe. Give us food so we may be satisfied, O Merciful One, Bestower of Boons and Fulfiller of Desires." 

Hearing this true statement, the merciful goddess smiled and severed her own head. As soon as she severed her head, it fell on the palm of her left hand.

Three bloodstreams emerged from her throat; the left and right fell respectively into the mouths of her flanking attendants and the center one fell into her mouth.

After performing this, all were satisfied and later returned home. (From this act) Parvati became known as Chinnamasta.
In visual imagery, Chinnamasta is shown standing on the copulating couple of Kamadeva and Rati, with Rati on the top. They are shown lying on a lotus.
There are two different interpretations of this aspect of Chinnamasta's iconography. One understands it as a symbol of control of sexual desire, the other as a symbol of the goddess's embodiment of sexual energy.
The most common interpretation is one where she is believed to be defeating what Kamadeva and Rati represent, namely sexual desire and energy. In this school of thought she signifies self-control, believed to be the hallmark of a successful yogi.
Contact Tantra Gurus for Online Chinnamasta Puja or Sadhana The other, quite different interpretation states that the presence of the copulating couple is a symbol of the goddess being charged by their sexual energy. Just as a lotus seat is believed to confer upon the deity seated atop it's qualities of auspiciousness and purity, Kamadeva and Rati impart to the Goddess standing over them the power and energy generated by their lovemaking.

Gushing up through her body, this energy spouts out of her headless torso to feed her devotees and also replenish herself. Significantly here the mating couple is not opposed to the goddess, but an integral part of the rhythmic flow of energy making up the Chinnamasta icon.
The image of Chinnamasta is a composite one, conveying reality as an amalgamation of sex, death, creation, destruction and regeneration. It is stunning representation of the fact that life, sex, and death are an intrinsic part of the grand unified scheme that makes up the manifested universe.

The stark contrasts in this iconographic scenario-the gruesome decapitation, the copulating couple, the drinking of fresh blood, all arranged in a delicate, harmonious pattern - jolt the viewer into an awareness of the truths that life feeds on death, is nourished by death, and necessitates death and that the ultimate destiny of sex is to perpetuate more life, which in turn will decay and die in order to feed more life.

As arranged in most renditions of the icon, the lotus and the pairing couple appear to channel a powerful life force into the goddess. The couple enjoying sex convey an insistent, vital urge to the goddess; they seem to pump her with energy.

At the top, like an overflowing fountain, her blood spurts from her severed neck, the life force leaving her, but streaming into the mouths of her devotes (and into her own mouth as well) to nourish and sustain them. The cycle is starkly portrayed: life (the couple making love), death (the decapitated goddess), and nourishment (the flanking yoginis drinking her blood).

Sri Chinnamasta
Hrdaya Eulogy
1.Always the assembly of gods place their heads to her feet [ is worship her)I am honouring her, the
bestower of all auspicious things
2.In every aeon she will be reborn for the continuity of sacrifice [yajna ]I worship Goddess Chinnamasta
who annihilates demons and evil beings
3.Rsi Vamadeva spreads the teachings of beautiful Vairocani effulgent as ten million suns.I pay
homage to her whose eyes flash like lightning
4.Blood gushing continuously from her throat, she satisfies all the yoginis who are devoted at her feet
5. Concentrate on this and say `Hum'. If you recite the mantra correctly, your enemies will disappear.
6. If you recite this mantra correctly "Hum Svaha', Chinnamastawill eradicate any afflictions distressing
you. Just as the wind blows away clouds, Chinnamasta blows away sufferings.
7.With only her stare, all fierce, cruel or demonic beings flee to distant place in order to escape her. To
her I worship
8.May there be victory to her who adroitly protects the world, forgives anger, and easily eradicates
deception and maliciousness of people. May there be victory to Chinnamasta who imparts
indestructible knowledge to kings, transforms demons ( into followers 0, and devours enemies.
9.Aarmed with a knife, she destroys even the smallest traces of wickedness of the Kaliyuga. As brilliant
as the divine blue lotus in the heavenly realms, her effulgence eclipses the sun's radiance.May there be
victory to her who frightens the assembly of rivals of gods; may there be victory to the dark forms, Kali,
Chinnamasta and Karali
10.All prosperity of the three worlds is bestowed by her who nurtures the three worlds and increase
knowledge by her power. Just as a lotus blossoms with sunshine, may Chinnamasta cause the
blossoming of the twiceborn
hearts. Chinnamasta is like both Sarasvati and Parvati.
11.O Mother, place a sharp dagger in your hand, whet it very sharply, and swiftly decapitate my
enemies. May your fame spread. Please destroy my enemies and wicked ones quickly. Please fulfill my
wishes and forgive me of any faults.
12. For her devotees, these are the twelve names that Chinnamasta likes to hear :
whose neck is severed
whose head is severed
one who holds a severed head.
who is whole or uninjured
who is skilled in causing peace.
who has beautiful eyes.
who protects the kings of the earth
Indra's wife
one [ beautiful ]
who delights those who present sacrificial offerings
whose lotus feet are honoured with sacrificial offerings
who is worshipped by Vasudeva[Krishna]
13.These are the twelve names that Chinnamasta likes. By remembering this is in the morning when
one arises, one's enemies will be destroyed
14.Who remembers her will have the same wealth as the gods, enemies will be killed, and will be killed
and will be content and peaceful.Her worshipper will have good thoughts. Always they seek refuge in
her. This primodal Goddess is worshipped by Srisadi [ Vishnu, Brahman and Siva ] May Chinnamasta,
the most auspicious one, help us.
15. One cannot kill one's enemies without knowledge of this hrdaya.
16.Anyone who wants to destroy one's enemies quickly, recite them happily.
17. Having recited this, merit is acquired and life and health will be bestowed. This completes the
conversation between Mahadeva and Parvati, in the Srinandyavartta.
Om Saravasiddhi Vaminiye.

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