BLISS - Bhaktivedanta Learning Institute for Self-Sufficiency,
a department of ISKCON temple Vrindavan, which instituted in the year 2014. Its
sole purpose is to spread awareness about the Self-sustainable Vaishnava
Goddess Pratyangira, also called Narasimhi, is a fierce aspected
form of Durga. She has the body of a woman and the face of a lion.
Various stories from the Puranas associate her with the Narasimha
avatar of Lord Vishnu. In the traditions of Shakti, goddess Pratyangira is
the Siddhilakshmi. In the traditions of Durga, she is the Purna Chandi, or
the fiery destructive power of the Brahman. The Atharva Veda proclaims
her as the Atharvana Bhadrakali, the goddess of magical spells. A
famous story in Ramayana tells of Indrajit, son of Ravana and a
legendary warrior, performing a ritual worship of goddess Pratyangira.
A stylised tree throws some shade over the whole party, its silhouette sculpted with symmetry. Full-figured birds sculpted with masterful detail sit on its leaf-laden branches. Shivaji sits beneath it in lalitasana, the pose of royal ease, so-called because it is the way kings of olden days sat on their thrones. His left foot rests on the right thigh, while the right foot crushes a dwarf underneath (the dwarf is symbolic of worldly ignorance). A few necklaces grace His torso, while the arcs of the kundalas dangling from His lobes caress His collarbones. His posterior arms carry the damru and a flame, symbolic of the creation and the destruction processes respectively. In one of His anterior hands He holds the seat of knowledge, a book, and the other He raises in blessing.
Note how Dakshinamurti Shivaji is seated atop a mountain. A group of sages surrounds Him, absorbing divine wisdom from Him. Their palms are brought together in namaskaram mudra, a gesture of deep veneration. Note the temple top chignon on their heads, adding to the decidedly Indian aesthetic appeal of this resplendent sculpture.
Dakshinamurthy is a facet of Hindu god Shiva as a supreme cosmic guru or teacher (Adi Guru) who enlightens one with all kinds of knowledge that elevates and enriches. Carved here in a stylized form and posture, Dakshinamurthy means, the one who is facing south (Dakshina) direction and sits under the auspicious Banyan tree to guide the cyclic courses of creation, preservation, amalgamation, suppression, and revealing true knowledge.
He sits in lalitasana on Mount Kailash with the right leg placed on the dwarf demon Apasmara, who stands for lack of knowledge and illumination. The expression on his face represents meditative serenity and calmness and the four rishis sitting on either side look towards him for the light of true knowledge; represented in a bright and glowy complexion, he is settled in bhava shuddha (deeply immersed in self) with a gentle smile on his divine face.
All the four hands carry his iconic implements, attired in luxurious garbs and ornamented in rich treasures, this sculpture gives us an essence of Lord Dakshinamurthy Shiva’s composed nature and motives. Zoom in to applaud the large tree sculpted distinctively as an aureole behind Shiva’s lustrous crown with the multiple leaves and branches twisting and turning, giving shelter to the expansive world of flora and fauna.
Goddess Pratyangira is a Hindu Goddess
associated with Shakti and is also revered as Narasimhi (divine energy of Lord
Narasimha). It is said that when Lord Narasimha (Vishnu incarnation) killed
Hiranyakashipu by tearing his chest and drinking his blood, he became so bloodthirsty that even Shiva’s avatar of Sharabha (bird-animal-human hybrid) couldn’t
Therefore to pacify Narasimha’s anger, Goddess Lakshmi incarnated
as Goddess Pratyangira or Narasimhi to put the situation in control.
Worshipping Goddess Pratyangira is an act of getting rid of black magic, evil
doshas and enhance prosperity. The story behind Goddess’ unique name is that in
ancient times, two rishis, Pratyangira and Angiras, while in their deep
meditation discovered the Goddess through moola mantra and the Mother Goddess
honored these rishis by naming herself as ‘Pratyangira’ after them.
BLISS - Bhaktivedanta Learning Institute for
Self-Sufficiency, a department of ISKCON temple Vrindavan, which instituted in
the year 2014. Its sole purpose is to spread awareness about the Self sustainable
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