Sunday, October 21, 2012

Navratri Special - Did you know?

In what form do the Japanese worship Maa Laxmi?

Kichijōten who is also known as, Kisshōten, Kudokuten, Laxmi, Mahasri or Sri-Mahadevi is a Japanese female divinity.

 Adapted from the Hindu goddess Laxmi is often shown as a wife or sister of Bishamonten (guardian of the North direction), and is one of the seven Lucky Gods. She is considered to be the goddess of virtue,wealth, happiness, fertility, and beauty.

Japanese belief in Kichijouten was widespread in the Nara period. The painted portrait at Yakushiji (Yakushi-ji  is one of the most famous imperial and ancient Buddhist temples in Japan) were worshiped as a principal image at the kissou keka or New Year's ceremony for welcoming 

good luck and sweeping out bad.

Kichijouten is usually represented as a beautiful Tang-

period court lady, wearing a richly embroidered gown and 

an elaborately jewelled head-dress. She is distinguished from Benzaiten  with whom she is often confused, by the "wish-granting" jewel  held in her left hand, and the lotus in her right. She also makes the gesture (mudra) of charity with her palm open and facing downwards. 

 May Mother Kichijōten bless us all!

 Jai Mata Di!

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