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Shakti: Realm of the Divine Mother [Anglais] [Broché]

Vanamali

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Shakti Shakti explains the mystery of the Divine Mother in all her manifestions, exploring more than 30 different goddess aspects of the Shakti force, both beneficial and malefic, along with Sanskrit hymns and classic verses by Sri Auribindo for each goddess. Full description

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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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Amazon.com: 5.0 étoiles sur 5  7 commentaires
17 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 This book is a tremendous joy to read. 23 mars 2009
Par Vatsala Sperling - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
In Tamil Nadu, India, there is a tradition of addressing any woman as Mother. You can call a total stranger as Ma or Amma. Farther north, the traditional address for an older woman is Mata Ji or Devi Ji, for contemporaries, it is Bahan Ji (sister) and for little girls it is `Bitiya' (daughter). Why? Why address a stranger with such a deep and endearing word as Ma? Why not call her Miss, Madam, Sweetie pie, honey or Hey You and so on?

This has to do with the reverential position of the feminine in the old culture of the ancient India. In its Golden Age, the Indian culture recognized the indispensable, undeniable power of the feminine energy in the ongoing cycle of creation, preservation and destruction. The seers and rishis who were then contemplating on the eternal truth and receiving the revelations of Vedas, recognized that the play of the gods, leela, is never complete without an equal input from the goddesses.

Mataji Vanamali brings out this goddess-centered aspect of the Indian culture very well in "Shakti the realm of the Divine Mother". This book (370 pages) is a tremendous joy to read. It answers many questions about the goddesses. Not just that, this book is a deep, engaging, authentic and accurate treaty on the subject of goddesses and a very fit reference source for anyone interested in researching the goddess aspect of the Hindu religion / culture.

The book has some poems by Mataji Vanamali. These poems, devoted to goddess, have an expression of pure devotion or bhakti. Sanskrit language yields very well to expression of bhakti rasa as it has very fluid words oozing with love, devotion, surrender, romance, affection, and softness. Mataji Vanamali has composed her poems in English, but somehow, she has succeeded in expressing the flavor of bhakti rasa.

About twenty-nine goddesses are described in separate chapters complete with a mantra devoted to them. Mataji Vanamali has used stories from the ancient Hindu scriptures that go into the purpose of a particular manifestation of the goddess. In a very picturesque manner, the goddesses are brought to life in the ongoing process of creation, preservation and destruction, the three fundamental and interlinked gunas that generate the universe of cause and effect and the great void beyond that our five senses find impossible to perceive. Purusha (the masculine) commands these three processes, but without his partner, Prakriti (the feminine), the mere Purusha is a pointless, brute force. It is the goddesses who bring spark and zest to the gods!

I read the story part of the book to my 11-year old son and he "got it". The language is clear and the stories are easy to follow. The few Sanskrit words that are used are all explained in a glossary at the end. All the names of the gods, goddesses as well as the demons are explained in the last pages of the book.

In the last two chapters, Vanamali has gone into the detailed explanation of how charkas and kundalini help us understand the inherent presence of the goddess within and all around us.

In my view, this book is a must read for scholars as well as regular, inquisitive folks who are keen about understanding polytheistic, goddess-centered world view of the Hindus that makes them build temples and worship Lakshmi, Kali, Saraswati, Parvati, Durga and so on, and give its people humility to address their woman as "Ma". This book is also a great reference for the Indophiles and Indians when they are asked about `ill-treatment' of women in India. `Ill-treatment' of women, unfortunately, occurs all over the world, in all the countries and cultures, not just in India, but unlike every other religion that has banished the feminine from its scriptures, India has and continues to honor the feminine force by worshiping the goddesses. This aspect is brought out clear and strong in the book and it is supported with relevant references and quotations from the scriptures as well as explanations of meanings and nuances for those not familiar with the Hindu philosophy.

I would strongly recommend that this book be included in the school and university courses that teach about Hindu religion. This book is also a positive, must-read for women so that they realize that a spark of the divine mother, the sacred feminine, Shakti, feminine lives within them.

Oh, such a positive review...how about making it well rounded by highlighting at least one negative aspect of this book? Sorry. No matter how critically I looked, I could not find anything wrong with this unique, deep and smart book written from the heart. Well done, Mataji.

Vatsala Sperling
Author of:
A Marriage Made in Heaven
How Ganesh Got His Elephant Head
How Parvati Won the Heart of Shiva
Ram the Demon Slayer
Hanuman's Journey to the Medicine Mountain
Karna: The Greatest Archer in the World
13 internautes sur 13 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A Uniquely Enlightened Telling of the Legends of Bharat Mata 24 novembre 2008
Par Vanamali Ashram - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
Dearest Mother Vanamali: I can't tell you how much I have been enjoying reading Shakti. Your telling of the legends of Bharat Mata (Mother India) is unique, in that you constantly emphasize, that the demons symbolize the negative aspects of mind, that everyone deals with. This takes the legends to another level of profundity for an age that is searching for ways to deal with its shadows... Secondly, your constant perspective is the stand-point of illumination, seeing God at every turn as both eminent and transcendent... You never miss a chance in your mask as sacred bard, to remind us that God is the world and the world is God. I loved your books Sri Shiva Lila and Sri Krishna Lila for your devotion and the profound authenticity of your writing. Shakti is a rare jewel among the translations of the ancient wisdom, that truly does justice to the enlightened consciousness that is the hallmark of the Sanatana Dharma (Perennial Philosophy).

This Book is a Tremendous Joy to Read

By Vatsala Sperling -

In Tamil Nadu, India, there is a tradition of addressing any woman as Mother. You can call a total stranger as Ma or Amma. Farther north, the traditional address for an older woman is Mata Ji or Devi Ji, for contemporaries, it is Bahan Ji (sister) and for little girls it is `Bitiya' (daughter). Why? Why address a stranger with such a deep and endearing word as Ma? Why not call her Miss, Madam, Sweetie pie, honey or Hey You and so on?

This has to do with the reverential position of the feminine in the old culture of the ancient India. In its Golden Age, the Indian culture recognized the indispensable, undeniable power of the feminine energy in the ongoing cycle of creation, preservation and destruction. The seers and rishis who were then contemplating on the eternal truth and receiving the revelations of Vedas, recognized that the play of the gods, leela, is never complete without an equal input from the goddesses.

Mataji Vanamali brings out this goddess-centered aspect of the Indian culture very well in "Shakti the realm of the Divine Mother". This book (370 pages) is a tremendous joy to read. It answers many questions about the goddesses. Not just that, this book is a deep, engaging, authentic and accurate treaty on the subject of goddesses and a very fit reference source for anyone interested in researching the goddess aspect of the Hindu religion / culture.

The book has some poems by Mataji Vanamali. These poems, devoted to goddess, have an expression of pure devotion or bhakti. Sanskrit language yields very well to expression of bhakti rasa as it has very fluid words oozing with love, devotion, surrender, romance, affection, and softness. Mataji Vanamali has composed her poems in English, but somehow, she has succeeded in expressing the flavor of bhakti rasa.

About twenty-nine goddesses are described in separate chapters complete with a mantra devoted to them. Mataji Vanamali has used stories from the ancient Hindu scriptures that go into the purpose of a particular manifestation of the goddess. In a very picturesque manner, the goddesses are brought to life in the ongoing process of creation, preservation and destruction, the three fundamental and interlinked gunas that generate the universe of cause and effect and the great void beyond that our five senses find impossible to perceive. Purusha (the masculine) commands these three processes, but without his partner, Prakriti (the feminine), the mere Purusha is a pointless, brute force. It is the goddesses who bring spark and zest to the gods!

I read the story part of the book to my 11-year old son and he "got it". The language is clear and the stories are easy to follow. The few Sanskrit words that are used are all explained in a glossary at the end. All the names of the gods, goddesses as well as the demons are explained in the last pages of the book.

In the last two chapters, Vanamali has gone into the detailed explanation of how charkas and kundalini help us understand the inherent presence of the goddess within and all around us.

In my view, this book is a must read for scholars as well as regular, inquisitive folks who are keen about understanding polytheistic, goddess-centered world view of the Hindus that makes them build temples and worship Lakshmi, Kali, Saraswati, Parvati, Durga and so on, and give its people humility to address their woman as "Ma". This book is also a great reference for the Indophiles and Indians when they are asked about `ill-treatment' of women in India. `Ill-treatment' of women, unfortunately, occurs all over the world, in all the countries and cultures, not just in India, but unlike every other religion that has banished the feminine from its scriptures, India has and continues to honor the feminine force by worshiping the goddesses. This aspect is brought out clear and strong in the book and it is supported with relevant references and quotations from the scriptures as well as explanations of meanings and nuances for those not familiar with the Hindu philosophy.

I would strongly recommend that this book be included in the school and university courses that teach about Hindu religion. This book is also a positive, must-read for women so that they realize that a spark of the divine mother, the sacred feminine, Shakti, feminine lives within them.

Oh, such a positive review...how about making it well rounded by highlighting at least one negative aspect of this book? Sorry. No matter how critically I looked, I could not find anything wrong with this unique, deep and smart book written from the heart. Well done, Mataji.

Vatsala Sperling
Author of:
A Marriage Made in Heaven
How Ganesh Got His Elephant Head
How Parvati Won the Heart of Shiva
Ram the Demon Slayer
Hanuman's Journey to the Medicine Mountain
Karna: The Greatest Archer in the World

Feminist Review
Review by Sunitha Jayan (Nov 2008)

Shakti: Realm of the Divine Mother

By Vanamali
Inner Traditions

As the name suggests Shakti: Realm of the Divine Mother is about Devi--the ancient, eternal Prakriti and mother of universe--and her various forms. There are an increasing number of books about the incarnations of gods and goddesses, but what makes this book different is that Vanamali goes beyond the stories of over thirty avatars in order to discuss the esoteric significance of each incarnation. Vanamali has accomplished the gargantuan task of bringing the many different aspects of Devi into a single book. It has been spectacularly researched with references to the Devi Bhagavatam Purana, Markandeya Purana, Ganga Mahatyam, and Bhagavad Gita, along with other sources. Every chapter begins with a hymn (mantra) to Devi and ends with a verse from the poem "Savitri" by Sri Aurobindo. The appendix of the book contains more poems on divine mother, names of gods and goddesses, and a glossary of Sanskrit terms and Hindu mythology.

Devi is called many names (Maha Maya, Maha Shakti, Maha Prakriti, Lakshmi, Parvati, and Kali, to name a few), and she is portrayed as the universal expression of power, which is both gentle and forceful. Vanamali explains the concept of Maha Maya, one who causes delusion in the minds of humans, as the production of phenomenal world. Maha Maya herself is the sum total of all and is worshiped as the mother, the life energy of the gods and all other creatures. Vanamali writes that, according to the Devi Bhagavatam Purana, Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva are born of Devi's gunas. Hence, the author states, "Wherever you see maternal love, in a bird or an animal or a human being, know that to be an aspect of Devi's love for the universe, for she is the universal mother."

Vanamali points out that the worship of god as a mother is found in all civilizations and was later repressed. The book accounts around thirty incarnations of Devi, some of which are gentle and peaceful (Lalitha) while some are ferocious and frightening (Kali). Others still depict the ideal housewife (Parvati) and yet others are shown as fierce warriors (Durga). Shakti: Realm of the Divine Mother thus provides an invigorating view of feminine power. This book is a great asset to the Hindu household or to anyone interested in the Hindu religion and its philosophies.
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A Must Read 5 avril 2013
Par Della - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
I purchased this book because I have an interest in the worship of Shakti/Devi. It's really hard to find good information on Devi and her various manifestations. I had high hopes for Shakti: Realm of the Divine Mother. It did not disappoint.

This is an *excellent* book. It's filled with terrific information that's written with obvious care and love. Vanamali details some of the major stories and themes with each goddess. She treats each manifestation as fully as space will allow and doesn't flinch when talking about the more fearsome goddesses such as Kaali and Chinnamasta. (Other goddesses featured include Durga, Lalitha, Saraswati, Lakshmi, Sri Chakra, and more.)

Vanamali pulls from scriptural sources such as the Devi Gita and the Chandi. She offers the esoteric explanations behind various myths that otherwise seem obtuse and bizarre to the outsider. She touches on Tantra quite a bit--both the Left and Right Hand Path, including Aghora. Shiva is mentioned throughout, since he is inseparable from Shakti.

Each chapter begins with a relevant mantra along with an excerpt from scripture or song. At the end of the book, you'll find all the mantras listed just in case you want to use them yourself.

Overall a terrific book. I would recommend it to anyone interested in Shakti from a practitioner's point of view.
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Fantastic book 6 décembre 2013
Par LadyLove - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Great book, especially for those going through Kundalini Awakening, good historical accounts of Hindu Goddess Shakti and healing information -
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Best book on the Mother Supreme 30 novembre 2013
Par Antara-Prabhat - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
Very conscious explanation of the Goddess in Her varying forms. Clear and multifaceted understanding of the truth, expressed in many ways.
The best book I've found so far to satisfy my desire to know more about Hinduism and spirituality as a whole and not just one perspective.
She moves between philosophy and science to stories and modern discoveries fluidly, taking the reader to a wonderful place of beauty.
I highly recommend this book as a reader of many books attempting to portray Devi / Kali.
She draws quotes and sources from Aurobindo to the Vedas. It's fantastic!
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