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Lakshmi: The Goddess of Wealth and Prosperity

Posted by Art Of Legend India [dot] Com On 4:36 AM
Goddess Lakshmi is the goddess of prosperity, purity, chastity and fortune, both material and spiritual. She is the consort of Lord Vishnu. The word ‘Lakshmi’ has been derived from the Sanskrit word Lakshay, meaning ‘aim’. Therefore she suggests the aim of life, which includes all worldly and spiritual success. She is generally depicted as a beautiful lady in the standing or sitting posture with golden complexion, dressed in red color attire and adorned with precious jewels. Her four hands represent four spiritual virtues. She sometimes is also depicted sitting on a fully blossomed lotus. An atmosphere of divine happiness, mental and spiritual satisfaction and prosperity always exist around her. Goddess Lakshmi is one of the most popular goddesses among the Hindus, who is worshipped to attain wealth, beauty and good luck. Her palm is always extended to bless people with wealth. She is specially worshipped on auspicious occasion of Diwali.

Goddess Lakshmi’s Emergence
Goddess Lakshmi, also known as Shri, attained importance as the consort of Vishnu. Her previous existences, described in the Vedas, make her the wife of Varuna or of the sun. Alternatively, like Saraswati, she is said to have issued from Prajapati. In the early times she is associated with both good and bad fortune. Lakshmi is now generally thought to have existed first as the daughter of the sage Bhrigu and to have taken refuge in the ocean of milk during a period when the gods were exiled from their kingdom as a result of a sage's curse. She was reborn during the churning of the milk ocean as Lakshmi, one of the fourteen precious things. She emerged from the ocean. As the gods saw her each of them wanted her as his wife. Lakshmi’s hand was given to Vishnu, whom, Lakshmi herself preferred. When goddess Lakshmi rose from the ocean of milk, She found Vishnu, the detached guardian of the cosmos, to be worthy of her. She became his shakti, source of his strength and splendor. Lord Vishnu is the soul of the universe; Lakshmi its substance. He is the protector; she is the provider. They are the divine couple who look after life. She is worshipped in conjunction with her husband, when she is portrayed as exhibiting her devotion to him by massaging his feet as he lies on the coils of the serpent Shesha or seated beside him on a lotus or riding with him on Garuda. 

Goddess Lakshmi Leaves Vaikuntha
Whenever Vishnu returned to Vaikuntha, tired after his wars with demons, Lakshmi would strengthen him with her affectionate touch. Once, while Lord Vishnu was resting, the sage Bhrigu entered Vaikuntha. Neither Vishnu nor Lakshmi saw and welcome him. Insulted, Bhrigu kicked Vishnu on his chest. Sage Bhrigu's insolence horrified Lakshmi. Lakshmi said to Vishnu Bhrigu kicked you on your chest, on Shreevatsa, and by doing so kicked me. Avenge this insult. She demanded angrily. But Vishnu said that I cannot harm one who is my guest. Considering this an affront to her dignity, Lakshrni disappeared from Vaikuntha. Without Lakshmi, Vishnu could not live in Vaikuntha. He descended upon earth and waited for her under a banyan tree, refusing to move until she returned. 

As time passed termites built a hill round him, covering his body completely. Birds and beasts were stunned by the lord's plight. Sage Bhrigu, the cause of Laksmi's anger and Vishnu's agony, was consumed by guilt. He took it upon himself to reunite the divine couple. He went near the termite hill and began kicking the cows. The cows cried out and Vishnu rushed to their rescue, striking the offender with his mace. "Ah, the lord has punished me for hurting Lakshmi whose spirit rests in every cow," shouted Bhrigu. Hearing this, Lakshmi was pleased and she reappeared to join her husband in Vaikuntha. 

Abduction of Goddess Lakshmi
The demons once found Vishnu in deep meditation, the demons carried Lakshmi away to Patala (Nadir). With her by our side we will be rich and powerful," they said. "Why is she crying?" asked the asuras. "You have taken her away from her lord. She give you all the material comfort you want, but without Vishnu, she cannot give you any peace of mind." Said Shukra, the preceptor of the demons. Realizing their foolishness, the demons let Lakshmi return to Vaikuntha. As she went away, they lost their wealth and power, but there was joy in their hearts. Those who seek both spiritual bliss and material delight, worship both the lord and his consort. All paintings are courtesy of Art of Legend India.

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Art of Legend India has the distinction of being one of the best in the Indian Handicraft Industry. We are about 75 years old handicrafts manufacturer & exporter. We are having team of more than 500 craftsman.

We are having our business offices in India, USA & Germany to ensure our best services.

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