The Eternal Feminine – Swami Vivekananda

Thy energy, Lord, to seize on woman and man,

To take all things and creatures in their grief

And gather them into a mother’s arm.

– Sri Aurobindo

The highest and the most sublime form of feminism is that of the Indian Tantra, which conceived God as the Eternal Feminine and all women as the manifestation of the Divine Mother. This conception of Tantra has important practical implications for restoring the dignity of woman in society. For, when we examine human history, we will find the social condition of woman reflects the philosophical and religious conception of womanhood. In this article, the great Yogi of modern India brings out this tantric vision of God as the Mother.

The Shakta – the seeker in the Path of Tantra worship the Universal Energy as Mother, the sweetest name they know; for the mother is the highest ideal of womanhood in India.

Mother is the first manifestation of power and is considered a higher idea than father. With the name of Mother comes the idea of Shakti, Divine Energy and Omnipotence, just as the baby believes its mother to be all-powerful, able to do anything. The Divine Mother is the Kundalini (“coiled up” power) sleeping in us; without worshipping Her we can never know ourselves. All-merciful, all-powerful, omnipresent are attributes of Divine Mother. She is the sum total of the energy in the universe. Every manifestation of power in the universe is “Mother”. She is life, She is intelligence, She is Love. She is in the universe yet separate from it. She is a person and can be seen and known (as Shri Ramakrishna saw and knew Her). Established in the idea of Mother, we can do anything. She quickly answers prayer.

She can show Herself to us in any form at any moment. Divine Mother can have form (Rupa) and name (Nama) or name without form; and as we worship Her in these various aspects we can rise to pure Being, having neither form nor name.

The sum total of all the cells in an organism is one person; so each soul is like one cell and the sum of them is God, and beyond that is the Absolute. The sea calm is the Absolute; the same sea in waves is Divine Mother. She is time, space, and causation. God is Mother and has two natures, the conditioned and the unconditioned. As the former, She is God, nature, and soul (mann). As the latter, She is unknown and unknowable. Out of the Unconditioned came the trinity-God, nature, and soul, the triangle of existence. This is the Vishishtadvaitist idea.

A bit of Mother, a drop, was Krishna, another was Buddha, another was Christ. The worship of even one spark of Mother in our earthly mother leads to greatness – Do you know who is the real “Shakti-worshipper”. It is he who knows God is the omnipotent force in the universe and sees in woman the manifestation of that force…. Blessed indeed is the man who is able to look upon woman as the representative of the motherhood of God.

Worship Her if you want love and wisdom.

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An Integral Approach to management and human development based on the spiritual vision of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother with an emphasis on its application to various domains of knowledge and life.

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