Saraswati, by Pieter Welteverde www.sanatansociety.com
Saraswati is my #1 Goddess. She rules what I dig most. I’m surprised she’s not up there with Kali and Aphrodite in mass popularity. Saraswati is regarded as the Goddess of knowledge and the arts. She represents consciousness and wisdom, is regarded as the goddess of sound and speech, and is revered as the dispeller of chaos and confusion. As she is the wife of Brahma, she is also seen as the co-creator of the universe. Her name means ‘the flowing’ or ‘the beautiful one’. Yeah baby.
My Saraswati story…
Years ago in Santa Fe, my friend Navjit and I went to a gathering for Guru Karunamayi. New Mexico is to gurus what New York is to rock stars – they all pass through eventually. So catching a Hindi lecture on a Friday night and then heading to the club was par for the course.
So there we were in our leather pants and Timberlands, gold eyeshadow and Betty Paige bangs…in lotus position.
Karunamayi spoke of a love that carries all. The God Head Love that bears everything for it’s creation.
“My children, my babies” she said in her high-happy Indian accent, “When you are angered, give your anger to Mama. Mama will carry it for you. When you do not know, give your confusion to Mama. Mama will carry it for you.”
When it came time to be blessed – the touch of her hand to my forehead – I went flush…turned to mush. It was confusing. I’m not wired for guru devotion or public displays of emotion. But I felt a sense of love emanating from Karunamayi that was expansive and warm. I felt forgiven, cradled, curious. When she touched me, tears fell from my eyes as if there was tap at the crown of my head that she gently twisted.
I left with one of her devotional chanting tapes – $8 bucks was the least I could do for having my head spun ’round. One chant burned itself into my memory and for years, even tho’ I never knew what it meant, I instinctively hummed it to myself. The chant would come into my mind before a speaking gig, or a big meeting; while on the acupuncture table or when I was sick. When my son was being born (at home) my mother accidentally flipped the stereo from “CD” to tape cassette (which hadn’t been played in years,) and there it was, the scratchy Karunamayi chant looping ’round for ten hours while I laboured:
Om Aim Srim Hrim Saraswati Devyai Namaha
I finally decided to look into the origins of the chant – for all I knew it could be a blessing for the fertility of camels. As it turns out, it is a devotion to Saraswati. My Sistah of speech. My Mama of the Arts. The Goddess of clear, calm strategy.
Who’s your favourite Goddess?
. . . . . .
Here’s a wee little clip of the chant from the “Amma Store.” Charms me to the core.
The Saraswati Mantra is a condensed form of Sri Gayatri Mantra and contains powerful seed syllables representing the three major forms of Divine Mother. Amma highly recommends this mantra for daily meditation or japa. This mantra grants the divine qualities of kindness, gentleness and true nobility.