Dasha Mahavidya and the 10 dimensions

The 10 Mahavidya are the terrifying aspects of the Devi, the Prakruti, the manifested creation. Their names are Mahakali (Kali), Tara, Tripursundari (Shodashi), Bhuvaneshvari, Bhairavi, Chhinnamasta, Dhoomavati, Bagalamukhi (Valagamukhi), Matangi, and Kamala.

Some people consider the Mahavidya-s into two divisions, as the less strict Tara, Tripurasundari, Kamala, Bhuvaneshvari, and Matangi. And the more terrifying Kali, Dhoomavati, Bhairavi, Chhinamasta, and Bagalamukhi. In my opinion all are equally terrifying and you should not do anything with them unless you are 100% sure of what you are doing. They are very deeply linked into your energy. If you mess up here, it will take you several lives to recover. They are not just idols or representations, they are all aware and very fierce, Ugra.

  • Dasha दश – 10, time period, fate, condition, perception, edge, position, pin-point, etc
  • Maha महा – great, huge, vast, light, joy, seed, intelligence, extreme, etc
  • Vidya – विद्या knowledge, skill, magic, mantra, gain, that which ignites, existence, to unbind or make free, pierce, the present instant, the combined act of starting, existing and the conclusion all together, etc.

This is how the 10 Mahavidyas were created. The story/allegory as per the Devi Puran. Devi Shakti/ Sati married Shiv against the wishes of her family and went to live with him at Kailas. Sati’s father Prajapati Daksh later planned a massive Yadnya at Kankhal, Hardwar but he did not invite Sati-Shiv to the ceremony. He didn’t like Shiv and after her marriage, didn’t want to see Sati either. But Sati wanted to go. Shiv was like, ‘you haven’t been invited so you shouldn’t go’. But Sati got cross, her logic being that Daksh was her own father, so why does she need an invite to go to her father’s house! Sati, in her rage, then created the 10 Mahavidya-s and they all surrounded Shiv and argued on her behalf. Ultimately Shiv gave in and told her to do whatever she wanted to, but there would be problems. And there were terrible consequences later. (There is a deep esoteric meaning to all this.)

Dasha Mahavidya and the 10 dimensions

These दश महा विद्या are generally taken to represent the 10 disha दिशा. They are considered to be 10 physical directions, east, west, north, south, NE, NW, SE, SW, up and down. This word दिशा means direction, region, scene, assignment, exhibition and most importantly, dimension. There are 10 dimensions of this manifested creation represented by the 10 Mahavidya energies. Each dimension is intelligent, aware, conscious and full of energy. The conscious energies of the 10 manifested dimensions are the 10 Mahavidya. The Bindu is the conscious origin of everything and beyond the concept of ‘dimension’. Now modern quantum physics and the string theory has also calculated that there are 10 dimensions. Physics has become metaphysics and will ultimately become Sanatan Dharma as the scientists get more deeply into the nature of intelligence and consciousness. The 10 dimensions ie the Dasha Mahavidya are a play of space and time plus awareness, intelligence and consciousness. Each one of them is roaring with power. It is a heady and exciting feeling to be face to face with their Vigraha where you can feel their energy pulsing.

The 10 Mahavidyas are not just the dimensions, they are the actual pran/ vital energy flowing in your body. The five main pran, are Pran, Apan, Vyan, Saman, and Udan. Their five sub-pran/ upa-pran are Kurma, Naag, Devdatt, Krkara and Dhananjai. I have written about the five main pran in my post here. The Dasha Mahavidya-s are present in your body as these 10 pran types and connect your mind/ body to the 10 dimensions of the manifested creation.

  • Mahakali and Tara are located in the lower part of the body below the navel and reproductive systems as Apana and Kurma respectively.
  • Shodashi and Bhuvaneshwai are Prana and Naag respectively and located in the upper regions of the body above the navel.
  • Bhairavi and Chinnamasta are respectively Udan and Devdatta and these move upwards, they are more prominent in the throat and upper parts of the body.
  • Dhoomavati and Bagalamukhi reside in the navel region and expand outward from it as Saman and Krkara respectively.
  • Matangi and Kamala reside in the upper parts of the body including the head regions as Vyan and Dhananjai respectively.

The vital energies are derived from the source called the mukhya-pran ie OM. (Your soul is connected to the Bindu/Om, but to reach there the dimensions have to be navigated and their energies made use of first.)

Dasha Mahavidya and the 10 dimensions

We exist in each of these dimensions and also in the central Bindu which is beyond these dimensions. The 10 Mahavidyas and the Om are all within you. Their derived pran are also flowing within you. When you stand in front of the Vigraha of the Dasha Mahavidya-s or recite their mantras or do their Sadhana, you are working on your own energies in a very complicated way. You are entraining your vital energies to the dimensions. You are entraining your pran to the highest energies possible. eg If you are doing Bagalamukhi sadhana you will be focusing on the Saman and Krkara vayu-s and intensely linking them to the highest possible levels.

Mahavidya Sadhana or tantra is a part of the Shri-vidya. If you succeed you get a massive one-up. Tantra is an aspect of spiritual sadhana which is very rare now. There are rare Guru-s who know how to perform these rituals correctly and with the precise intention. And there are the rare aspirants who actually need to do these type of sadhanas. Generally 99.99% of us do not need to do Mahavidya related practices. The regular shaant/ benign forms of the Devi, ie Sarasvati, Laxmi and Parvati are more than sufficient for regular householders like us.

The internet has several dowsy sites which give tantric mantras for vashikaran, ucchatan, stambhan, etc. (There are 6 types of mantras.) I saw a video where the lady was giving out some creepy mantra for hypnotising someone. Someone else was saying that you don’t need a Guru for doing Bagalamukhi Sadhana and stuff. Avoid these sort of sites and their so-called mantra, you might get yourself and your target both into serious trouble.

If you are interested in doing any Sadhana related to the Mahavidyas, first entrain your energies to the Navavarna mantra. A initial 9 lakh repetition of the Navavarna is essential, else you might not be able to handle the further energies you evoke. eg Mahakali is the foremost Mahavidya. She is depicted in a very fierce manner. Her dangerous form is Smashan-Kali and her somewhat milder but still terrifying form is Dakshin-Kali. She is always depicted unclothed ‘dig-ambar’ दिगम्बर. She literally ‘wears the dimensions’, ‘clothed in the energy of space-time and more’, ‘secret of the dimensions’, ‘defined limits of manifested creation’. She is also the ‘inner core around which the manifested creation is created’. (I know an incident where the aspirant did an extremely complicated ritual to call Her. She came and asked him what he wanted. But the aspirant was so scared just seeing Her, that he ran away.) These rituals are a potent but often fraught with dangers. A specific life-style has to be adopted, there are strict energy rituals, specific and very typical ingredients, typical locations, then the appropriate time for doing this, etc are needed. Even the yantra or moorti/ vigraha that you will use as a focus point has to be made in a specific way. If you can use the mantra, tantra and yantra the way it is supposed to be, any of these Mahavidya-s can grant you everything including the ultimate Moksh.

Every aspect of Sanatan Dharm is designed to take you to your own reality, to achieve Moksh. Even from Ayurved, Rishi Patanjali has written that there are certain herbs Oushadhi, which if used in the correct way can grant deepest levels of Samadhi and further Moksh. But we do not have the herbs, nor the detailed knowledge on how to use them now. And the mantra, tantra and yantra system is also not available so easily. So in this present ‘modern age’ it is best to stick to Gayatri mantra and the Soham/ Hamsa practice. Focus on the the Bindu which is beyond the dimensions. This might take years or even a few lives, but you will reach there. The concepts of Kundalini, Moksh, Mahavidya-s, etc are not prizes, they cannot be shown-off as achievements. So be very clear why you want to do all this first, your intention and resolve will be tested on every step of the way.

 

Gayatri Mantra, Devi Sarasvati, Raja-gun and Agni

There are three basic attributes Gun गुण, Satva, Raja and Tama. The Prakruti, ie the active energy who creates all the manifested is composed of these three building blocks. These three Gun form her ‘body’. When these three are perfectly balanced there is no creation. It is only when there is a spontaneous imbalance in these three, does further creation start. The entire creation is composed of the three Gun ie the Prakruti and this all exists within her. (The top-most dot of the Shri yantra is the unmanifest Ultimate and the next equilateral triangle represents the three Gun getting out of balance and creation starting.) So if you want to know your true reality, the three Gun have to be brought back into perfect balance by conscious use of pran/ vital energy.

Gayatri Mantra, Devi Sarasvati, Raja-gun and Agni

The conscious energy of Satva is called Vishnu/ Laxmi and this is linked to the Sun/ Surya. Vishnu is considered to be potential energy and thus masculine. Laxmi is the active principle thus considered feminine and the wife of Vishnu. The Raja gun has potential energy called Brahmadev and active energy called Sarasvati who is his wife. Raja Gun is connected to Agni/ Fire. The Tama gun is similarly linked to Shiv, his wife Shakti and the Moon/ Chandra.

These three Gun mix, suppress, produce, exist, support, separate, unite, recombine with each other in every way possible and in varying proportions to create the manifested reality. All things you see in this universe are created, maintained, evolved/destroyed because of these interactions. These three Gun are inter-linked and yet independent of each other.

  • Satva is the essence of intelligence, consciousness at all levels, it is linked to the deep pleasure of knowing that you are the Ultimate, it illuminates.
  • Raja is energy of motion and is linked to pain, it activates. This ‘pain’, is the pain which one feels when one is convinced that he is separated from the Ultimate.
  • Tama is the inertia of solidity, dullness and indicates delusion, it restrains.

If you study the process of creation, the Satva and Tama by themselves are inert, they are incapable of working by themselves. They are animated by the Raja gun. ‘Movement’ is the real reason creation occurs. Raja gun is the intelligent energy of movement. (What is the source of the spontaneous initial movement is something everyone has to experience for himself as it cannot be described in the language of the manifested creation. It was ‘before’ creation occurred.)

In your spiritual practice when your Kundalini crosses the Vahni mandal, the circle of conscious fire, the Vishnu granthi/knot and moves beyond the Muladhar and Swadhisthan chakras, you gain control over the Raja Gun. You gain control over the energy of movement. Now onwards the movement of your mind, body, internal pran remains in your conscious control. If you control ‘movement’ in its subtlest aspects, you can control everything. You can now move things, thoughts, emotions, vibrations, gross and subtle things with precise control. Or precisely stop their movements. This is a very important step in your spiritual progress. After this, your path gets slightly less bumpy. In the Bhagwat Gita, this step is described as the fall of Bhishma.

  • It is only Raja gun which has the energy to overcome the inertia of Tama. The solidity of Tama can be harnessed only by Raja. If Tama is the delusion that you are separate from the Ultimate Reality, then this delusion is also powered by Raja. Higher the energy of inertia, lower is the consciousness, lower is the life-form eg stones and soil. All resistance to movement and the stability of mass is Tama.
  • Raja is necessary for the Satva to operate. Raja provides a substratum for Satva gun to project its intelligence on. Satva is conscious intelligence, but it still needs the energy provided by Raja to display its intelligence, to move! If Satva is the understanding that you are the same as the Eternal Reality, then this is also powered by Raja. If the consciousness is powered higher, the inertia is lower and this self-awareness is higher eg aspirants on the spiritual path. All conscious creatures are more Satva – powered.

When you observe some thing, look for inertia, energy and consciousness. One will dominate over the other 2, this will be its predominant Gun. Everything can be classified as Satva-dominant, Raja-dominant or Tama-dominant. Even thoughts, emotions, the subtle to the gross, the tangible to the intangible is dominated by one of these three. You can observe yourself to know more about your overall tendency. This requires a lot of personal introspection and the ability to focus dispassionately.

  • Eg a stone has high inertia, lower energy and lowest intelligence, so it is Tama dominant.
  • Eg a genuinely kind and gracious human being will have lowest inertia, he has reduced inactivity. His mind will be less prone to random fluctuation as he focusses on his and others higher selves. Thus he becomes Satva-dominant. (You become kind when you realise that you and everything else is essentially the same).

Gayatri Mantra, Devi Sarasvati, Raja-gun and Agni

Raja is the energy present in the universe and the energy in all the things present in this universe. The energy of multiple forms of life and things we see are all products of Raja acting on Satva and Tama. Evolution, transformation, change and all its aspects are Raja. Fire, heat, force, motion, kinetic energy, electricity, magnetism, friction, etc is Raja. The pran/vital energy flowing in you is Raja. Understanding this concept is very important for the spiritual aspirant. If you can control the Raja gun, you can control the direction of your evolution. You can control the movement of pran in your body. Raja gun is the kinetic energy at all levels of existences.

Raja is Agni. Agni is the conscious energy of fire and is responsible for all kinds of movement and transformations at all levels. So we worship Agni in all ways possible. The Sanskrit mantras which we use also are fiery, they transform, push, pull, change, move. In all our compulsory ‘Right-Actions’, Sanskar, Fire /Agni is the witness. For any ritual in Sanatan Dharm, the presence of Agni is essential. There are 16 Sanskars in Sanatan Dharm aka Hinduism. The first is the Garbh-dharan Sanskar where the would-be parents are charged with energy so that they can conceive a happy healthy baby. And the last is the Anteyshti Sanskar where the discarded body is given to the conscious energies of Agni/ Fire and the flowing waters/ Aap.

Now the foundational mantra of Sanatan Dharm is the Gayatri mantra.

Om, Bhuh Bhuvah Swah, Om Tat Savitur Varenyam, Bhargo Devasya Dheemahi, Dhiyo Yo nah Prachodayat, Om.

ॐ भूः भुवः स्वः । ॐ तत्सवितुर्वरेण्यम । भर्गो देवस्य धीमहि। धियो यो नः प्रचोदयात॥ ॐ

This mantra is linked to the Devi Sarasvati. She is the active principle of Raja-gun. When you recite this mantra, do its jaap, and ultimately repeat it for 27 lakh times, you gain control over the Raja gun, the active principle of energy, transformation, creation and change. This is the biggest tool which you can possibly possess! Armed with this mantra, go on and do your spiritual practice and see how things move or stop moving as per your conscious will.

For boys a ‘Anushthan’ is performed at the age of 6-7yrs, this is called the Upnayan Sanskar or Yadnopavit or the ‘thread ceremony’. This is a ritual with intention that the boy will perform the 27 lakh times Gayatri mantra repeat in his life-time. For girls on the 6th birthday, she is taught the Gayatri mantra and she is also supposed to recite this 27 lakh times. In these ‘modern’ time, we have clean forgotten to teach our girls and even for the boys only few families do all this. It is a very great loss to humanity.

Gayatri Mantra, Devi Sarasvati, Raja-gun and Agni

People say in spiritual practice, ‘increase Satva-gun’ and ‘keep away from Tamasic stuff’. But how? You cannot increase Satva just like that as it is incapable of movement by itself. It is a lump of energy just sitting there! And how to reduce tama-gun or keep away from it? It is also a lump of energy sitting there. You have to move! Movement and complete control on movement is essential for spiritual practice. You have to start everything by application of Raja-gun. And Gayatri mantra is the most powerful way you can use Raja-gun consciously.

So recite the Gayatri mantra at least 27 times twice a day! It takes less than 5 minutes. Try to consciously invoke the power of Devi Sarasvati in yourself. She is the intelligent energy of motion, of Agni. She is the junior school teacher who starts you on your spiritual route. if you pass her test at the Brahma-granthi, you will be promoted. She will be followed by Devi Laxmi at middle-school, here the syllabus will be Satva-gun. If you transcend this, you will be allowed entry into high school where the syllabus will change to Tama-gun. Devi Shakti teaches high-school. The college teacher will be Devi Lalita Tripur-sundari herself. Once you pass her exams you realise that all through you yourself were your own teacher, you were the syllabus and you are everything and more.

But all this only after you first learn, understand and experience the Gayatri mantra in all its subtlety.

‘Saraswati namasyami, chetanam hrudi samsthitam’ सरस्वती नमसयामि चेतनाम ह्रदि संस्थितां  is how one of my favourite stotra (youtube link) on Sarasvati starts.

  • Sarasvati – Sarasvati is ‘celestial brilliance, intelligence flowing, movement, motion, power, expression’
  • Namasyami – Sarasvati is ‘the face, opening, entrance, presence of Ultimate.’ (The Ultimate is a paradox of illusion and wisdom united together. Depth of stillness and flowing movement together. The eternal unborn one in solitude)
  • Chetanaam – Sarasvati is ‘the consciousness, fire, awareness, conspicuously visible sentience’
  • Hrudi – She is the awareness ‘in the individual soul, in the the third eye Ajnya chakra, in the Center of this Ajnya chakra
  • Samsthitam – Sarasvati is ‘the foundation and conclusion’.

So Sarasvati is the flowing celestial intelligence of movement, at the opening of the route to the Ultimate. She is the ever alert fiery awareness at who is the foundation and also the conclusion of the individual soul.

The individual soul and its individual personal universe starts when Raja-gun spontaneously moves and creates an apparent separation from the Ultimate. Thus Devi Sarasvati is the energy who Creates. This duality ends when it knows its reality again at the conclusion of a process initiated again by Raja-gun ie Devi Sarasvati.

 

Gayatri Mantra, Devi Sarasvati, Raja-gun and Agni

(This is from the Sankhya, from Ayurved and some of my understanding and experience. I know that sometimes I write quite esoteric things which are not available on the Internet or elsewhere. It is my Karma to write, I do it for myself, to rebalance my karmic baggage. But if you are reading it, if it is your karma to read, then know that you should also actively try to practice. You cannot go onward in your spiritual practice just reading my experiences. So here is the link to the most complete form of Gayatri (youtube link), the Ghanapath. Close your eyes and listen to it. Feel its fire, its heat, its movement, let its rhythm move you.)