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Position of the Goddess in Vishnuism and Shaktism

Discussion in 'Hinduism DIR' started by Sirona, Dec 4, 2021.

  1. Sirona

    Sirona Hindu Wannabe

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    Namaste,

    can anyone explain to me the differences regarding the position of the Goddess in Gaudiya Vaishnava, Sri Vaishnava and Shaktism? To my knowledge, Gaudiya Vaishnavas believe that Krishna has no contact with the material nature of Prakriti, but can only derive his pleasure from Radha, who is qualitatively different from ("better than" :D) Prakriti, and that Lakshmi performs penance outside of Vrindavan because she cannot be included in the circle of gopis.

    To my humble knowledge, Shaktas believe that Durga = Prakriti. Is this correct?

    What is Lakshmi's position in Sri Vaishnava? Is she Prakriti or does she occupy a special position like Radha?

    Thank you very much for your answers. :)
     
  2. ameyAtmA

    ameyAtmA ~ ~
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    Namaste

    I think we have talked about this many times haven't we?

    Adi MahA Lakshmi is not only transcendental to the prakruti, is also muLa prakruti, is the same Devi and there is a secret - keep reading.

    Durga = MuLa Prakruti, yes, but circles back to being Adi Shakti come back.
    DurgA is the later form as KAtyAyanI, and whom each Deva gave their own shakti to become the collective shakti of all Devas to fight MahishAsur. Hence MahishAsur Mardini.

    According to Shaktism also, not only acc to VaishNavism, the Adi Adi Adi parA shakti , the secret Devi (who created all the other MahA Devis and their 'saumya rupa' counterparts, according to Devi Bhagwat), is MahALakshmi! (while the common people equate Adi Shakti to Parvati.)

    This is a secret that is not spelled out, but you have to go through a maze puzzle to figure this out from the secret text called Rahasya TrayaM.

    I will post verses from Rahasya TrayaM shortly.

    So, DurgA is the complete Adi Shakti, but Her original Adi form "behind the scenes" is MahA Lakshmi.

    From MahA Lakshmi came the other Devis, and the pairs etc.
    ---------

    Not only acc. to Vaishnavism, that Shri is parA shakti of NArAyaN,
    Acc. to VaishNav pancharAtra system, of which Lakshmi Tantra is a part,
    the highest, innermost AtmA (ParamAtmA) is VAsudev, and His counterpart Devi is Lakshmi in the form called ShAntA

    So when the Lord is Adi ParA VAsudev, Lakshmi is ShAntA - and is way beyond the material Prakruti.

    PancharAtra Agama (Agama of the 5 nights when VishNu narrated some truths to Shiva , BramhA, , and NArad PancharAtra to NArad Muni), explains the 4 whorls of the adhyAtmic Lotus.

    VAsudev = innermost whorl of the Lotus = AtmA (essentially ParamAtmA)
    SankarshaN = shuddha ahaMkaar
    Pradyumna = mAnas
    Aniruddha = buddhI

    are the 4 whorls of the Lotus inner to outer.

    So the Lakshmi matching ParA VAsudev is Shanta and way beyond creation.
    ShAntA means one who is an embodiment of ShAnti i.e. utter peace.
    ----


    Back to Devi Bhagwat , 9th Canto says

    Devi as their Supreme is mULa prakrutI, the formless avyakta muLa,
    and there is no distinction but She takes all the Devi forms.

    It also says Shri KRshNa is the first and most beautiful form manifestation from the formless Devi
    DurgA is buddhi of Shri KRshNa and merges into Him at mahA pralay
    Radha is prANa of Shri KRshNa and merges into Him at mahA Pralay

    NArAyaN merges into KRshNa's right arm -- now readers might say "give me a break!" I know, but this is what Devi Bhagwat says, (while Bramha-Vaivarta purAN is not being considered here.)

    and please note Devi Bhagwat is an upa-purAN and was one of the later purANas.

    continued:
    Ganesh and Kartikeya merge into NArAyaN
    All Lakshmis into Adi Lakshmi
    etc. (at mahA pralay)
    --
    Shri of Shri VidyA - LalitA SahasranAma has one of the 1000 names as

    ChidagnirUpA = of the form of the fire of pure consciousness

    The highest forms of Adi Shakti are pure consciousness alone, and Shaktism knocks off any differences in the other sampradAy - Shaiva , VaishNav by saying all Devis are the One Devi
    who is actually MahA Lakshmi although commonly ShAkta-Shaiva people think it is Uma - which makes no difference that they assume this.

    ------------------------

    My experience says this is all Bramha' -- sarvaM khalvidaM Bramha'
    and you cannot tear apart Shakti from the ShaktimAn and yet Shakti is a role.
    Ride the tiger, lion, form the galaxies, and be the pure consciousness. All in One.


    You can't tear us apart.
     
    #2 ameyAtmA, Dec 4, 2021
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2021
  3. ameyAtmA

    ameyAtmA ~ ~
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    Bhagavad GeetA 13.16
    avibhaktaM cha bhUteshu vibhaktaM eva cha sthitaM |
    bhUtabhartru cha tadneyaM grAsishNu prabhavishNu cha ||

    Line (pankti) 1: That One (ParamAtmA) is One and indivisible (avibhaktam) like the sky, and yet, appears as if divided among and within the various entities [- charAchar - moving and stationary - who are also moving ].

    Line (pankti) 2: This One and only ParamAtmA, the subject of knowledge (
    dneyam),
    a) is their
    bhUta-bhartRu i.e. VishNu (nurtures all living beings) , is their bhartA* (support and shelter)
    b) AND annihilator of all - He is
    GRAsishNu (Rudra, grAs = destroy) , and
    c) AND manifests all , He is
    PrabhavishNu (BramhA; prabha = birth, bring forth).


    So the same ParamAtmA is VishNu, Rudra and BramhA

    bhUtabhartRu cha tadneyaM grAsishNu prabha-vishNu cha

    and he is avibhaktam.

    Now solve the puzzle.
     
    #3 ameyAtmA, Dec 4, 2021
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2021
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  4. Viraja

    Viraja Jaya Jagannatha!

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    Not sure about Radha's status in Gaudiya philosophy.

    In Shaktism, Shakti is the supreme.

    In Srivaishnavam, Lakshmi or Sri is lesser in status to that of Narayana, her role is in rendering 'purushakara praboodhi' to the aspiring devotee. Which means, she plays the role of a mediator requesting Lord Narayana to grant moksha to an aspiring devotee.

    My 2c.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  5. Sirona

    Sirona Hindu Wannabe

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    So it should do no harm to explain it once more, shouldn't it? :D Only recently have I begun to look more seriously at Shaktism, so please be patient with me.
     
  6. Sirona

    Sirona Hindu Wannabe

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    So, if in Sri Vaishnava, Lakshmi is considered lesser in status to that of Narayana, is she a goddess, Narayana's yogamaya, or something of its own kind?
     
  7. ameyAtmA

    ameyAtmA ~ ~
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    Oh , I was only noting, rather trying to recollect , that we have discussed this months ago.
    It certainly does not mean, and I was not suggesting that we cannot talk about it again. In fact, isn't that what we do in the adhyAtmic field?
    We have been talking about Upanishads, Geeta , Brahman, Maya, and all other things again and again because you don't just read the Geeta and get it.

    Like the wise guru said - Just like you have to wash a muddy cloth repeatedly until all mud goes away, we have to read scriptures again and again.
     
  8. ameyAtmA

    ameyAtmA ~ ~
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    While you wait for the reply,
    if this helps in anyway, everything I wrote in my first post in reference to VaishNavism was indeed pointing to Shri VaishNavism, because that is the known major VaishNav path that holds Shri (Lakshmi) as the Devi. PushTi Marg worships Krishna stand-alone (but takes shelter of YamunA Devi) and the others worship Radha.

    All that explanation in my post above about Pancharatra and Lakshmi Tantra was about Shri VaishNavism, because Shri VaishNavism is based on it.
    Plus I mentioned that Shri (Lakshmi) is transcendental in this school.

    Yes, there are 2 groups in Shri VaishNavism and one of them considers Lakshmi a Jiva , and the other considers Her Shakti - I am talking about this other sect in this post:

    Please see the red highlight - that is pointing to Shri VaishNavism acc. to me. Not the sect that thinks Lakshmi is a Jiva - but the other one.
     
  9. Viraja

    Viraja Jaya Jagannatha!

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    She is not god's yogamaya in Srivaishnavism. She is Sri, a very superior jiva. She is given an exalted status as being the 1st or foremost guru of an entire parampara and a place in Lord Narayana's chest. But her status is lesser to Narayana.
     
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