A common term for the Goddess is simply ‘Mother’. Throughout India, the Goddess is referred to as ‘Mother’: Mata, Mataji or Ma in the Hindi-speaking north, Amma in the languages of the south. Hindu Goddesses embody paradox and ambiguity: they are gentle yet heroic; beautiful yet terrible.
For her devotees, the Goddess is the ultimate reality, knowledge of whom liberates from the cycle of birth and death, yet she is also the ensnaring veil of the ‘great illusion’ (mahamaya) binding all beings to samsara. As the power which both enslaves and liberates, she is Shakti, the energy or power of the One Supreme Lord.
The Sculptural Representation of Hindu Goddesses
The goddess can be approached and worshipped in many forms, in natural phenomena, or in human forms as a mother, a wife, an old woman, or a young girl. The main representations of Hindu Goddesses in sculptures are:
Durga - The slayer of the buffalo-demon (Mahishasura), seated on or attended by a lion or tiger (when she is called Ambika). Durga, the ‘difficult to access’, has ten arms and weapons, strikes and pierces Mahisha with her trident and beheads him, while yet maintaining a calm and detached demeanour.
Kali - Kali and other terrible manifestations, such as Chamunda. They are terrifying forms who haunt the cremation grounds. Kali is garlanded with severed heads, girdled with severed arms, with rolling, intoxicated eyes and a lolling tongue. She dances on the corpse of her husband Shiva.
Forms of Shakti - As consorts or energies (Shakti) of the gods, particularly Saraswati, Parvati and Goddess Lakshmi, the consorts of Brahma, Shiva and Vishnu, who are beautiful models of wifely and maternal devotion (though not devoid of righteous anger). In this category, we can also include Radha and Sita.
Ten Mahavidyas - As groups of generally ferocious female deities, notably the Ten Mahavidyas.
Local Goddesses - As local or regional icons in village or family shrines and temples. Local goddesses are often goddesses of smallpox and other pustular diseases, such as Shitala in the north and Mariyamman in the south.
Aniconic Characters - As ‘aniconic’ forms, that is of material representations of gods such as chakras and yantras,
Natural Resources - As natural phenomena, particularly rivers, such as the river Ganga, Tulsi Devi.
Q1. Who is the most powerful Hindu goddess?
We all admit that there are millions upon millions of Hindu goddesses. All of the goddesses have their own fables. According to Hindu mythology, all goddesses have always been distinct manifestations of an ultimate divine goddess, Adi Shakti. In the writings and Vedas, there have been several extremely well-revered and well-known goddesses however, these goddesses are the most powerful and have demonstrated their resilience in a variety of ways.
Sarasvati is known as the Goddess of Knowledge and Wisdom, similar to Athena in Greek mythology. She is nearly worshipped by those who seek knowledge and wisdom.
Lakshmi is known as the Goddess of Prosperity and Wealth. Those who desire to achieve success in life, who want to be affluent and wealthy adore her because she is the embodiment of money.
Durga is portrayed as a Goddess of Salvation and Happiness. She is also revered as the slayer of evil and the defender of justice. She is the personified form of all the Gods and Goddesses' Divine Shakti. She is seen in her statues wielding weapons with her numerous weapons and riding a lion.
Q2. Who is the goddess of beauty in Hindu?
Parvati, the Hindu goddess of beauty and power, is the epitome of both. She is Adi Shakti. She is the goddess of love, devotion, fertility, exquisite strength, and power. This goddess is Lalita Tripurasundari (most beautiful within the three worlds). Lord Mahadeva has disassociated himself from earthly pleasures, but when he encounters Goddess Parvati, he is enthralled. Such is Goddess Parvati's aura.
Q3. Who is the most popular goddess in Hinduism?
Hindu Goddesses are most popular from region to region thus these goddesses are prominent deities in their own rights like-
Everybody worships Lakshmi as a deity in their own way. At least one picture of Lakshmi may be seen in most Hindu dwellings. At the entryway, the majority of them will feature a representation of two little feet. Lakshmi is represented by these feet. This Goddess is capable of defeating any negative power. Lakshmi, Parvathi, Durga, Kali, Amba, Bhavani, and Saraswathi are all incarnations of the Goddess.
Durga's most ferocious form is Kali. She is the most popular goddess in Bengal. She is revered with deepest reverence and devotion in other regions of the country as well. Durga is said to have given birth to her from the forehead of one of her battles with the Asuras. Her eyes are bloodshot, and her tongue sticks out of her lips. Her face and breasts have also been soiled with blood. Almost usually, she is shown standing atop Shiva, one foot on his thigh and the other on his chest. Shiva (Purusha) is the male force in Hindu mythology, whereas Shakti (Durga or Kali) represents the female energy or nature. The dominion of nature over man is symbolised by Shiva reclining at Kali's feet. Shiva is powerless without her. Despite her terrifying look, Kali is one of Hinduism's most beloved goddesses.
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