Devee | Deviyaan


Home | Devee | Deviyaan


Previous | Next

See also   Var Lakshmee

Lakshmee is the consort of Vishnu, one of the three main Deities of Hindu - Brahmaa, Vishnu and Shiv. According to Vishnu Puraan, she was first born to Maharshi Bhrigu and his wife Khyaati. Later she was born as a Samudra's daughter and appeared at the time of Saagar Manthan. When Vishnu took Avataar as Vaaman, Parashuraam, Shree Raam, and Krishn; she appeared as Padmaa or Kamalaa, Dharanee, Seetaa and Rukminee respectively. She is as inseparable from Vishnu as speech from meaning, knowledge from the intellect or good deeds from righteousness. She always chooses Vishnu as Her partner, and He always brings Her to His Vaikunth Lok. There are 108 names of Lakshmee, but the most popularly known names are - Shree, Padmaa, Kamalaa, Meenaakshee, Ramaa, Indiraa, Naaraayanee, Kalyaanee etc.

She manifests Herself sitting on a pink lotus flower with two elephants doing Abhishek of Her. She holds lotus flowers in Her two upper hands, and the two lower hands are in Abhaya Mudraa (pose) and Varad Hast Mudraa through which she endlessly showers wealth and boons.

Lakshmee means "good luck" to Hindu. Although many Hindu worship Lakshmee daily but there are some special days to worship Her. Hindu worship Lakshmee the most on Divaalee, the festival of lights. According to tradition people would put small oil lamps outside their homes on Divaalee and hope Lakshmee will come to bless them. The most important and popular day to worship Her is
--Amaavasyaa of Kaarttik month - Deepaavalee day.
--Another days is Sharad Poornimaa day which falls on Aashwin Poornimaa after Nava Durgaa and Dashaharaa day.
She is normally worshipped along with Ganesh Jee kept on her left side. Besides Ganesh Jee, Saraswatee Jee also accompanies Her, as wealth should be accompanied with intellect and wisdom.
Lakshmee is mostly worshipped by those who wish to acquire or to preserve wealth. It is believed that Lakshmee (wealth) goes only to those houses which are clean and where the people are hardworking. She does not visit the places which are unclean/dirty or where the people are lazy.

Lakshmee is known as "Chanchalaa", meaning "the one who is fickle" which is again a misnomer and misunderstanding of a great concept. It is because Lakshmee doesn't stay (remain stable) at any one place... It is based on the principle that the stagnant water body decays and harbors disease while a flowing water body (river) is not only fresh in itself but also fertilizes all the lands that it passes through.

Asht Lakshmee - Lakshmee's Eight Forms With Her Iconography
Hindu worship Lakshmee the most on Divaalee, the festival of lights. According to tradition, people would put small oil lamps outside their homes on Divaalee and hope that Lakshmee will come to bless them. The prefix Sri (also spelled as Shri, pronounced as Shree) renders as the "one who takes delight in Shree' Lakshmee, meaning wealth, wealth of any kind. Primarily eight kinds of wealth are established, >associated with goddess Lakshmee. Altogether there are eight forms of Lakshmee who give us - the following enumerated well-known 16 types of wealth and many more. (1) Fame, (2) Knowledge, (3) Courage and Strength, (4) Victory, (5) Good Children, (6) Valor, (7) Gold and other gross properties, (8) Grains in abundance, (9) Happiness, (10) Bliss, (11) Intelligence, (12) Beauty, (13) Higher Aim, High Thinking and Higher Meditation too, (14) Morality and Ethics, (15) Good Health, (16) Long Life. Let us glance upon the glory of Asht Lakshmee's individual nature and forms. --

(1) Aadi Lakshmee - Lakshmee in this form resides with Naaraayan in Vaikunth. There She is known as Ramaa. There She serves Naaraayan, which is symbolic to serving the whole Universe. Lakshmee is Naaraayan's Shakti. She is also known as Indiaraa in this form also because Her two hands carry a lotus and a white flag and the other two are in Abhaya Mudra and Varad Mudraa.

(2) Dhaanya Lakshmee - Dhaanya means grains. In this form She rules all grains of the world containing all essential vitamins, minerals, protein, calcium, carbohydrate and so on. With the grace of mother Dhaanya Lakshmee one gets all essential nutrients grains, fruits, vegetables and other foods. In this form She is 8-armed, in green garments, carries two lotuses, Gadaa (mace), paddy crop, sugarcane, bananas, other two hands in Abhaya Mudraa and Varad Mudraa.

(3) Dhairya or Veerya Lakshmee - Dhairya means Dheeraj or patience. She grants the boon of infinite courage, strength and inner ability. Those, who are in tune with infinite inner power, are always bound to have victory. Those who worship Dhairya Lakshmee they live and lead a life with tremendous patience and inner stability. Eight-armed, in red garments, carries Chakra, Shankh, bow, arrow, Trishool (or sword), gold bar or book?, other two hands in Abhaya Mudraa and Varad Mudraa.

(4) Gaj Lakshmee - When Ksheer Saagar was churned, as Bhaagvat Puraan states, She came out of the Saagar and thus is called Samudra's daughter. She came out sitting on a full bloomed lotus flower carrying lotus flowers along with two elephants beside Her carrying vessels for Her Abhishek. Many a time we see Lakshmee standing on the lotus flower and elephants pouring nectar over her. During the festival of Deepaavalee along with Lakshmee the Ganapati or the Elephant God is also worshipped; that signifies the protection from evils as well as abundant grace and blessings for additional prosperities. Four-armed, in red garments, carries two lotuses, other two arms in Abhaya Mudra and Varad Mudraa, surrounded by two elephants bathing her with water pots.

(5) Santaan Lakshmee - This form of Lakshmee bestows good children to the couple. Those who worship this particular form of Shree Lakshmee, known as a Santaan Lakshmee, are bestowed with the grace of Lakshmee and have wealth in the form of desirable children with good health and long life. Six-armed, carries two Kalash (water pitcher with mango leaves and a coconut on it), sword, shield, a child on her lap, a hand in Abhaya Mudraa and the other holding the child. The child holds a lotus.

(6) Vijaya Lakshmee - Vijaya means victory. Who worship this form of Lakshmee are bestowed with the boon of victory in all the facets of life, at all time, everywhere. Vijaya means to get success in all undertakings and all different facets of life. Some are strong physically but weak mentally while others are economically rich but poor in their attitude and cannot exert any influence. Vijaya is to have all encompassing victory. Vijaya is to rejoice glory of our real nature - Vijaya is to conquer the lower nature. Vijaya is the victory in external and internal wars and of course eternal wars! Hence those, with grace of Vijaya Lakshmee, have victory everywhere, at all time, in all conditions. Victory to Vijaya Lakshmee. Eight-armed, in red garments, carries Chakra, Shankh, sword, shield, lotus, pasha, other two hands in Abhaya Mudraa and Varad Mudraa.

(7) Dhan Lakshmee - Dhan means wealth. Worship of this form of Lakshmee bestows good nature, peace, health, prosperity, luck, virtues, family, food, land, will power, intellect etc. But as per Rig Ved's Purush Sookt, Dhan is not only a wealth in coins and currency. Even Sun and Moon, fire and stars, rains and nature, oceans and mountains, rivers and streams, all these are our wealth, so are the progeny, our inner will power, our character and our virtues. With the grace of Dhan Lakshmee we will get all these in abundance. Six-armed, in red garments, carries Chakra (discus), Shankh (conch), Kalash (water pitcher with mango leaves and a coconut on it) or Amrit Kumbh (a pitcher containing Amrit - elixir of life), bow-arrow, a lotus and an arm in Abhaya Mudraa with gold coins falling from it.

(8) Vidyaa Lakshmee - Vidyaa means education. Education is not mere studies to receive the degrees and diplomas certificates from the educational institutes or universities. Serenity, regularity, absence of vanity, sincerity, simplicity, veracity, equanimity, fixity, non-irritability,  adaptability, humility, tenacity, integrity, nobility, magnanimity, charity, generosity and purity - these 18 qualities are developed through education which could also lead to immortality.

Education, which cannot give peace to the soul or cannot give the knowledge of the Self and the inner satisfaction, is not education. Education, which cannot wipe the tears of others, known or unknown, is not education. Education is the understanding the situation and silence or art of living and leading the life that can make the life, the Life Divine, where the ultimate Goal of the life is the God-Realization. Such Education can come only through discrimination and dispassion. One can have abundant amount of money, but if he does not know how to make good use of it, it will work to his disadvantage. Vidyaa Lakshmee is the understanding and the knowledge to mold the ordinary life into the Divine Life. A life of service, a life of feeling for a fellow being, a life of charity and generosity, a life of purity, a life for seeking a soul within the soul and a life with an ultimate aim of the realization of the Absolute is the only real education, which can come only with the grace of Vidyaa Lakshmee.

Thus all these eightfold Lakshmee is ultimately one single power only. That is Aadi Shakti. The perennial and unchangeable, ever lasting, eternal truth or the absolute is this Supreme blessedness, the Aadi Shakti. She is the origin. She is the light. She is the power, the wisdom and the strength. She is the Supreme Joy, peace, bliss and illumination.

Some Legends About Birth of Lakshmee

(1) Lakshmee's Curse to Indra
The appearance of goddess Lakshmee is related to an ancient story. Once Durvaasaa Rishi, the short-tempered sage, was coming from Naaraayan's place and he had a flower garland in his hand. He met Indra on his way coming from the opposite side. Since that garland was very holy he thought that Indra is the King of Devtaa and deserve this garland, so he presented that garland to Indra. This garland's flowers would never wilt. Indra threw that garland on his elephant Airaavat. Airaavat threw that garland on the ground and crushed it with his feet. Sage Durvaasaa got vey angry seeing the condition of his Divine garland. He cursed Indra - "Because you have shown disrespect to the sage and his gift, all the gods would lose their prosperity, grandeur and valor.

Due to the curse, Devtaa lost everything and the demons vanquished the gods out of the heavens. The defeated gods then went to seek refuge to Brahmaa. Brahmaa could not do anything so he went to Vishnu. Vishnu suggested them to extend friendship and to churn the Milky ocean, the Ksheer Saagar, to obtain the nectar of immortality, Amrit. The gods then went to demons, extended friendship with them and planed for Saagar Manthan. This was the reason of Lakshmee's birth from Ksheer Saagar.

(2) Lakshmee As the Daughter of Saagar (Sea)
During the Saagar Manthan, Lakshmee also came out along with other things. Seeing her stunned beauty all Devtaa desired to have Her. Samudra said - "To whom she chooses." When asked from Lakshmee, she refused to marry to Shiv as he had no home, no clothes, wore only deer skin, ad his helpers were only Daakinee, Pishaach etc. She refused to marry Brahmaa Jee too as he was very old. She chose Vishnu as Her consort and went with Him as only He was handsome, rich and He had the power to control Maayaa (illusion).

There is another version as why Lakshmee refused to marry Brahmaa Jee and Shiv Jee - Shiv was refused on the basis that he had already had Chandramaa (Moon) on his head and he lived in a very odd way - half naked, with snakes, in Shamshaan, smeared with ash etc; Brahmaa Jee was also refused on the basis that he already had Saraswatee beside him, thus there was left only Vishnu whom She could choose then, so She went with Vishnu.

Because of coming out from Ksheer Saagar, Lakshmee is also called the daughter of the sea also. Since the Moon also appeared from the ocean during the churning, the Moon is called Her brother. A-Lakshmee, the goddess of misfortune, is Lakshmee's older sister.

(3) Lakshmee As the Daughter of Bhrigu
According to the Vishnu Puraan, Lakshmee is the daughter of Bhrigu and Khyaati and resided in Swarg but due to the curse of Durvaasaa Rishi to Indra, She left Swarg and made Ksheer Saagar her home. The reappearance of Lakshmee from Saagar Manthan and her marriage to Vishnu thereafter, remain the same. Lakshmee is the power and Maayaa of Lord Vishnu. In some places She is seen in two forms, Bhoo Devee and Shree Devee, both on either side of Vishnu. Bhoo Devee is the symbol of fertility in which She is Mother Earth. Shree Devee is the wealth and knowledge of Her another form which is seen with Naaraayan. Most people are mistaken that they are separate although they are one, Lakshmee.

(4) Lakshmee Always Incarnates as Vishnu's Consort
Later She always incarnated as the consort of Vishnu's Avataar. Still She has a liking for Shiv, that is why she worships Shiv everyday in the evening with 1,000 lotus flowers plucked by Her maids throughout the day. One day when She was offering those 1000 flowers to Shiv in the evening, She found that there were two flowers short from the count of 1,000 flowers, but it was too late now to pluck the two flowers. Suddenly She remembered that once Vishnu told Her that Her breasts were like two bloomed lotus flowers, so She decided to offer them to Shiv. She cut one breast and offered it to him, but as She was going to cut Her another breast, Shiv moved with Her devotion, appeared before Her and stopped Her to do so. He converted the cut breast into round sacred Bel (Aegle marmelos) fruit and sent it with his blessings to Earth to flourish near his temples. Her cut breast was replaced.

(4) Lakshmee Associated With Kuber
Traditions associate Lakshmee with Kuber also.

(6) Lakshmee's Curse to Raadhaa

Significance of Laksmee with Naaraayan
There is a metaphorical significance attached to the image of Lakshmee as the consort of Vishnu ..
One of the names of Vishnu is "Nar", which is also used for denoting water
And "Ayan" refers to residence ... Thus Vishnu's name is Naaraayan thus denotes the One who resides in Water
Lakshmee is also referred to as residing in Rice - rather grains of rice ..
And we all know that rice is cooked in the presence of water ...
The fire required for cooking the rice is the effort...
So only when one makes the effort and sweats it (releasing water via perspiring) that one can attract Lakshmee (wealth and abundance)
The message is simple - hard work has no substitute for abundance.

Some More Information About Lakshmee
Any thing that need be affluent gets the auspicious prefix or suffix Lakshmee, or Sri like Raajya Lakshmee (Wealth of Empire), Shaanti Sri (Wealth of Peace), etc.

In modern India, common titles standing in for the English Mr. and Mrs. are Shri (also Sri or Shree) and Shrimati (also Srimati or Shreemati, or Shreematee), as in "Sri Gupta" or "Srimati Mangeshkar".

In Uttaraakhand, after the worship of the goddess on Divaalee night, the Shankh or Conch is not blown. This is because the Shankh is also from the ocean like the goddess Herself, so it is given a day of rest.

Lakshmee is the patron goddess of Kolhaapur city, Mahaaraashtra.



Home | Devee | Deviyaan


Previous | Next

Created by Sushma Gupta on 3/15/03
Updated on 06/19/13