Devi-otional (A)Art(I) posting for Chandraghanta and Her Night amidst the #NavRatri cycle.
I’ve often focused, in the image-postings to go with the occasion, upon the more violent side to ChandraGhanta – “Ultra-Violent Light”, as I’ve previously coined the term [as it’s also the light that illuminates that which is hidden – great way, also, to know who and where the enemy really is, as well]. Or, for that matter, depictions wherein it’s Devi, accompanied by Dawon, and standing alone. And both of these elements make sense – it’s an integral part of what Durga does, who Durga is; and the NavaDurga cycle of course places the focus upon Her.
But there’s another side to the ChandraGhanta phase of the NavRatri Cycle, and it’s one which forms the natural furtherance of the Brahmacharini arc of ascent which preceded it.
The reunification of Parvati & Shiva; the recognition of the former by the latter, for Who and What She really is. Especially to Him.
It’s a beautiful thing. And – to my mind, at least, it’s what’s illustrated, at least conceptually here.
Although you could also read the beam of light in the distance beyond the mountain crags as being a Jyotirlingam – and thence also symbolizing the intersecting of Rta-from-Brahman, i.e. AdiParaShakti through the world. [And, while it’s less likely, what I have interpreted here as the Sun’s glow reflecting off the Moon, thusly presenting a largely crescent fringing – it could, perhaps, also be an eclipse; in which case, some of the symbolism remains, and there are additional resonances with later on in the Cycle, wherein Katyayani becomes KaalRatri becomes MahaGauri again with its passage and passing]
In terms of the NavaRatri cycle, what I see here is the light arcening up from the reunified Divine Couple – heading to the Moon, from the two Moon-crowned Gods [you can see the Chandrasekhar on Shiva, just subtly there amidst His Jatta-Hair], where said light can also be seen arcening off to the left of the image, back to the Sun – thus recalling the position of Ma as Kushmanda Who stands as the next of the Nine NavaDurgas. The Power of the Sun. Whom we encounter only once the Daughter of the Mountain has progressed up into the Upplands of the Himalayas to find Shiva, and remind Him of Her Reality.
It is a beauty which, just as with the Moon amidst the Sea of Stars, which may recall a certain other ‘Milky Way’ ocean from Hindu myth wherein Shiva also performs a vital role [and the Galaxy – note that “laxy” element, it should sound familiar, although it’s “gala” that is the “milk” in Ancient Greek]; but more upon that, some other time.
For now … it’s a sublime image; which says all that it really needs to without my commentary nor situation within the current religious situation upon it. And one which was on my mind when I saw that somewhat similar-looking crescent-halo’d Moon-rise over my Mandir this evening, for the same phase of the Goddess.
[Author’s Note: Written in 2019 – Our theology has, of course, continued to develop significantly in the interim. Which means that it’s now – as ever – coming back to this precise point with greater perspicacity and wonderment.
Because, as with Moonlight and Bells – some Journeys are Cyclical, involve seeming disappearances, and yet nevertheless Ring True
Jai Mata Di !]
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