Day 6 — Shakti (Goddess of creation, Change, instinct, willpower, energy, action, and ultimately, magic )
The Hindu Goddess Shakti — or Sakti — represents pure divine female power. The word ‘Shakti’ means energy or power in Sanskrit. She is the creatrix, the great divine mother. She is the dynamic energy that is responsible for the creation, maintenance, and destruction of the Universe.
Shakti is a Mahadevi, or great Goddess — which is a sum of all other Goddesses. All other Hindu Goddesses are seen as aspects of Shakti. Every God in Hinduism has his Shakti and without Her energy they have no power. The play of female energy has no beginning and no end.
The Tibetan supreme feminine power, Shakti does not stand by idle when we are in distress. She is an active, loving force for change. When called upon, Shakti manifests within us as intelligence, instinct, willpower, energy, action, and ultimately, magic. Shakti especially energizes communication skills, so that our words will be heard clearly and understood.
Shakti, one of the most important goddesses in the Hindu pantheon, is really a divine cosmic energy that represents feminine energy and the dynamic forces that move through the universe. Shakti, who is responsible for creation and can also be an agent of change, is often manifested to destroy demonic forces and restore balance.
As a vital cosmic force, Shakti takes many forms and names, including mother goddess, fierce warrior, and the dark goddess of destruction. In Hinduism, every god has a Shakti, or energy force. It’s one of the reasons she is worshipped by millions of people throughout India.
Shakti is also known as Parvati, Durga, and Kali, She’s an archetype who you might call upon for strength, fertility, and power. You might identify with her as a powerful female figure.
Shakti is a Mahadevi, or Great goddess — which is essentially a sum of all other goddesses. In the guise of Durga, Shakti is a fierce warrior who kills the demon Mahisasur as well many other evil creatures. Kali is another form of Shakti who’s worshipped throughout India. Kali, whose name is commonly translated as “the black one,”is the dark goddess of destruction. In Hindu tradition, she symbolizes the destructive and temporary nature of life. However, her devoted adherents also believe that she protects them both on Earth and in the afterlife.
She is the active, passionate creative spark of life that stimulates Shiva or Siva — who is consciousness, Shakti’s consort and counterpart. Shakti and Shiva are seen as interdependent opposites with near equal value.
Shaktism is a major tradition of Hinduism, wherein the metaphysical reality is considered metaphorically feminine and Shakti is regarded as the supreme godhead. It includes a large number of goddesses, all considered aspects of the same supreme goddess. Shaktism has different sub-traditions, ranging from those focused on gracious Parvati to that of fierce Kali.
Origins and history
The earliest archaeological evidence of what appears to be an Upper Paleolithic shrine for Shakti worship were discovered in the terminal upper paleolithic site of Baghor I in Sidhi district of Madhya Pradesh, India. The excavations dated the Baghor formation to between 9000 B.C and 8000 B.C.
Inspiration from Shakti
Remember that Shakti is a universal energy force. And as such, she can be called upon for numerous purposes, such as:
To fight your own personal demons or when seeking protection, call upon Durga.
For fertility or if you identify with the mother goddess archetype, turn to Parvati.
To destroy evil and restore balance, look to Kali.
Mantra shakti can also be achieved through a series of phrases, rather than a single seed sound. These phrases are repeating continuously in a loop by the practitioner. One common shakti mantra is the Adi Shakti or First Shakti mantra. This mantra invokes the Goddess’ protective energy, eliminates fear and fulfills desires.
Some examples of Shakti mantras and the energy they invoke:
- Adi shakti (primal power): adi shakti, adi shakti, namo namo
- Kundalini mata shakti (mother of all energy): mata shakti, namo namo
- Prithum bhagawati (divine creation): prithum bhagawati, prithum bhagawati, namo namo
Symbols, Offerings, etc
Use these items with intention on your altar or in your daily rituals to welcome the energy of Shakti:
- Shakti mandalas and thankas
- Mantras, meditation, and yoga practices
- The yoni ,and anything resembling the yoni
- Flowers, especially those that look like a yoni
- Conch shells
- Crescent moons
- Symbols of your passions and creative endeavors
- Fruits: Peaches, strawberries, apples, figs, dates, pomegranates, and oranges
- Other food offerings: Milk, curd, honey, ghee (clarified butter)
- Colors: Reds, pinks, oranges, salmon, and coral
- Herbs: Shatavari and tulsi basil
- Kundalini and the chakras
- Shakti’s themes are protection, banishing and communication. Her symbols are the number six, magic charms and lotuses.