Yoga Journal

Yoga Journal

Parvati Power

This Hindu goddess, consort of Shiva, proves that dignity and smarts prevail.

By Shoba Narayan

Parvati is one face of the divine female energy, often called Devi (the shining one) or Shakti (power), that many Indians worship as the power above all deities. The goddess is personified in many forms, including Saraswati, goddess of learning and consort of Brahma, and Lakshmi, goddess of fortune and consort of Vishnu.

Parvati came into being when a female demon was terrorizing the world, smug in the knowledge that only a son of Shiva could kill her. But Shiva had withdrawn from the world to practice ascetics high in the Himalayas. He wouldn’t even look at a woman, much less sire a son.

In an effort to woo Shiva, Shakti, the great mother goddess, took the form of Parvati. Shiva scorned her until she engaged in austerities of her own. Impressed, Shiva accepted her as his wife, and they produced a son who destroyed the demon.

Smart and curious, Parvati questioned Shiva about the Vedas and other sacred texts, whose secrets he whispered into her ears. But the couple also had their spats, one of which resulted in Ganesha: Parvati was frustrated that none of Shiva’s ganas (attendants) would swear allegiance to her, so she created a boy and instructed him to let no one enter her home. When Shiva arrived, the boy blocked his way, so the god chopped off his head. Parvati was sick with grief. To appease her, Shiva fused the head of an elephant onto the boy’s body and breathed life back into it—and named him Ganesha, “leader of the ganas.”

Today, Parvati is the epitome of determination and discipline. She refuses to let Shiva’s scorn intimidate her and doesn’t take no for an answer. Instead, she wins with grace and dignity, something we can all aspire to.

therefore, all sages worship him. He is there before anything else was there in the world. Whomever Narada approached could not give him an answer. Therefore, finally he approached Lord Shiva and asked this question. Lord Shiva replied that he mediate upon his guru. Narada satisfied and went back and told to other gods that he got his answer. Then the other gods asked Narada- who is Lord Shiva’s guru? The sage, then only realized that he did not get the answer to his question so far. So he went back to the Lord and praised him. ‘O Lord’, you are above everything. You can destroy the whole world and can create it back even better way within seconds. So, please be kind enough to understand all my doubts instead of asking you silly questions. Then, Lord Shiva replied with a smile. ‘Oh Narada, The person you and the entire world worship as their mother is my guru’. Narada surprised and replied; But, she is your wife? Then Lord Shiva said; Yes, that is the reason why she is my guru. Then he showed Narada his mediating form which we normally see in pictures. So, Narada saw Parvathi as Kundalini rising across Shiva’s spine and going across his neck and realized the reason why he is called ‘Nataraja’. Finally, he saw Parvathi at Shiva’s Crown Chakra in woman form just like the universal mother and water falling out of her mouth to feed the entire living beings. Then, Lord Shiva told to Narada: ‘Oh! Great sage, Narada, please spread the knowledge to the entire world that when one respect and believe their wife to the most, their Kundalini will start aligning with her and they will have the perfect married life. Then only, she will yield to him willfully’.

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