The Goddess is Shakti, meaning power, the resort of all transformative energy and cataclysmic force that mere human logic cannot comprehend.

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Durga is the Mother of the universe from who comes forth the creation, sustenance and dissolution of all beings and all worlds. She is Chit-Shakti, the power of consciousness, out of which the cosmos coalesces as matter, life and mind.

India as a sublime culture and profound dharmic civilization is the gift of Ma Durga. Durga is the Goddess who personifies India as a whole and its incredible vitality, from her presence in village shrines to her representation of the highest yogic spirituality. Bharat Mata is Durga with her imperious lion. She was the image behind India’s independence movement, which worked through her inspiration, such as Sri Aurobindo so eloquently lauded. She remains the aspiration for future India and its global influence to draw the world back to its spiritual roots.

Ma Durga as the Divine Mother can guide humanity into a new era of peace and happiness. But she does so by first eliminating the powers of darkness, not by compromising with them, much less by consoling or appeasing them. Ma Kali arises as her martial aspect, dissolving entrenched old karmas, compulsions and attachments that bind us to adharma, to unfold a new creation.

Today we must bring back the power of Durga to deal with our mounting global crisis from the environment, to health, and social and political divisions. This requires we revive dharmic and yogic traditions that honor the Goddess as our inner guide. Awakening a deeper Yoga Shakti can restore India to its ancient throne as Vishvaguru, the guru of nations – with its Rishi vision leading humanity on the path to higher consciousness. Its profound yogic teachings  can help awaken and guide all people on both individual and collective levels.

Honoring Durga means empowering women both in the social and political world and in the inner realm of yoga and spirituality. It necessitates protecting the Earth, through wise ecological practices and through uncovering the ancient spiritual destiny of our sages and seers that we have long forgotten.

Awakening Durga’s Shakti within us requires that we fearlessly and relentlessly challenge the forces of darkness, including our own weakness of will that allows us to tolerate or excuse negativity and corruption. It requires that we awaken the Arjuna in each one of us to achieve our highest dharma.

Durga’s sword is the source of all dharmic ruling power at spiritual and mundane levels. She commands the celestial army and its earthly counterparts struggling for truth and justice in society.As Mahishasura Mardini, Durga slays Mahishasura, the personification of ignorance, darkness and tamas. Vijaya Dashami is her glorious tenth day of victory, after displaying her nine magnificent forms, ending with Siddhidatri, her highest blessing aspect who grants all boons and accomplishments.

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