Friday, November 16, 2007
The Force of Ma Pratyangira and Swami
She weaves the Shakti web in mysterious ways. I am having countless mystical experiences. It is difficult to write about what is happening. But it feels important to express what I can, to share the Shakti that has graced my life from Amma and Swami's visit.
On Saturday night Amma and Swami gave darshan at a local Unitarian church. Despite the inclusiveness of this denomination of the Christian religion's views, the energy in the church felt cold and oppressive. Despite its openness, its roots lie in a patriarchal institution that has excluded women or demonized them for centuries. And even where women have been included, they have been de-sexualized. When the Divine Mother arrives in one of such places, the energies are inevitably formidable. And She, Durga can certainly slay the demons. While Ammas embodies Pratyangira other goddesses like Durga, Kali, Varahi, Lalita all come through her. The Goddess whose qualities are needed comes. And Amma is the blessed receptacle for these energies that are available to all of us. Amma always reminds us that She has come here to help us recognize Goddess in ourselves and each other. We too can harness such amplified energies, but serious yogic practices are necessary in order for our physical bodies to be able to contain the energies.
A workshop on the Sri Vidya tradition and practices to Pratyangira was offered on Sunday. Amma commented on how strong the force of Goddess was in my temple space. How all those that were present had brought Her there, and how because of the devotion I have for Durga, Durga in Her various forms is coming through me and opening my home to others who share this path. We all received an initiation that evening and five us were invited to go deeper into the tradition and to be initiated at another level.
And then Amma went into her bhava. We had put a large mat in the center of the room. It has the yantra or geometric form of Goddess painted on it in orange, red and yellow. This yantra is a portal into other forms of consciousness. In this tradition the yantra is Goddess Herself. Amma and Swami performed a puja, offering water, rice, incense, fire, sandalwood oil, red vermilion paste, tumeric, bhajans, mantras, and prayers . Amma called us up to the center of the mat, one by one. Her devotees would stand on the bindu of the yantra while Amma would place her finger on their third eye. Two of us initiates were asked to stand on either side of the devotees receiving darshan. We needed to catch them if they started to fall and help those who needed it to their seats. And people would fall back, their eyes closed, and we would be there to push them upright until finally Amma reached for them (with the aid of Swami as She was totally in trance) and hugged them for darshan. Her hands perform mudras or sacred hand gestures that invoke and honor divine energies. Her tongue stretches out and her eyes roll back. She mutters mantras or cackles . Some devotees She locks in the fiercest embrace and they shake, laugh and sometimes cry. All in my living room. Standing in the mat for the entire darshan was intense. The energy was electrifying.
How can I doubt the forces that have guided and informed my life, especially what I felt while Amma and Swami were here? What really happened this past weekend? Will I ever know, or can I just shed the mind that is trying to rationalize and explain? How can I even explain these extraordinary experiences and feelings?
Goddess was here. Goddess is here. Can you feel Her?