Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Neel Saraswathi

Saraswati's different forms

 MahaSaraswati  is the presiding Goddess of the Final episode of Devi Mahatmya. Here she is a part of the trinity of MahaKali, MahaLakshmi and MahaSaraswati. She is depicted as eight armed.  MahaSaraswati destroyed Sumbha and other asuras. 

 MahaNeel Saraswati (Mahavidya Neel Saraswati)
  Mahaneel Saraswati, or NeelSaraswati, is another form of Mahavidya Tara  or UgraTara, or Ugrajataa. This form is mainly associated and has a mixture of the Mahaayana and the Vajraayana sects of Buddhism. Goddess Tara is said to be Vaak-siddhi-pradayini (bestower of the different mystic powers of speech).
 Matangi (Mahavidya)

  Matangi or Mahavidya has a dark emerald complexion and has three eyes, holding the veena, and is the another (Tantric) form of the Goddess Saraswati. The Goddess Meenakshi at Madurai is worshipped as Matangi.  

 Saraswati's mythological stories

 In the Rig-Veda (6,61,7), Saraswati is credited, in association with Indra, with killing the serpentine being Vritraasura, a demon which hoarded all of the earth's water and so represents drought, darkness, and chaos. She is often seen as equivalent to other Vedic goddesses such as Vak, Savitri, and Gayatri. Saraswati represents intelligence, consciousness, cosmic knowledge, creativity, education, enlightenment, music, the arts, and power. She is not only worshipped for secular knowledge, but for the true divine knowledge essential to achieve moksha. She is also referred to as Shonapunya, a Sanskrit word meaning ‘one purified of blood’. In some Puranas (like Skanda Purana) she is associated with Shiva and in some Tantras with Ganesha.
   According to Brahma Vaivarta Purana 2.6.13-95 Vishnu has three wives, who constantly quarrel with each other, so that eventually, he keeps only Lakshmi, giving Ganga to Shiva and Saraswati to Brahma.
Brahma created the universe with the help of Saraswati. Brahma was the guardian of the cosmos. He too needed Saraswati’s support to sustain the cosmos. Using her knowledge he instituted and maintained dharma, sacred laws that ensure stability and growth in society. Brahma also needed the help of Lakshmi, goddess of wealth, who gave him the wherewithal to ensure cosmic order. The question arose: who did Brahma need more? Lakshmi or Saraswati? Wealth or knowledge? The goddesses argued, “Knowledge does not fill an empty stomach.” Said Saraswati. “Wealth keeps man alive but gives no meaning to life.” Said  Saraswati. “I need both knowledge and wealth to sustain the cosmos. Without knowledge I cannot plan. Without wealth I cannot implement a plan. Wealth sustains life; the arts give value to life. Thus both Lakshmi and Saraswati are needed to live a full life. 

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