Thursday, February 23, 2012

Shri Radhe Maa - Drishti, the divine gaze

Mamtamai Shri Radhe Maa’s drishti or glance has changed the lives of thousands of devotees  

by Sanjeev Gupta

Look into my eyes and hear what I'm not saying, for my eyes speak louder than my voice ever will

It was much later that I recognised that gaze. It was childlike but deep and penetrating. I had seen it earlier in a worshipper of the Goddess who identifies herself completely with Maa Para Shakti. For worshippers of the Goddess, Maa’s eyes have a special significance. One, they are all-seeing or antaryami – they penetrate the heart of devotees and know all there is to be known. Two, they look out into the world in different bhavas or attitudes. In their ugra or fierce form, they blaze with divine anger at whatever is hurting or harming Her devotees. In their benevolent form, Her compassionate glance grants the wishes of those who surrender to Her. The Devi has been described as Meenakshi (One with eyes shaped like a fish) and Kamakshi (One with eyes that attract the soul of the seeker to liberation).   

The All-Seeing Eye of Maat was the symbol of the Egyptian Goddess Maat, the Goddess of law, morality, and justice. The Egyptians believed that it was Maat who held the universe together. It was Her quality of order which maintained the world. According to Barbara Walker, an expert on ancient Egyptian religion, “The Mother-syllable Maa meant 'to see'; in hieroglyphics (Egyptian script), and it was written in the form of an eye.”

The eye, therefore, and its function seeing or drishti, has been associated with the Mother Goddess since antiquity.

The first time I had Shri Radhe Maa’s darshan, it was over in a few seconds because I was one in hundreds who had lined up to pay their respects. Every act of Shri Radhe Maa is imbued with deep significance. For instance, she unties a thread from her wrist and hands it to a devotee to signify that she has accepted the devotee in her service. There was also the glance or drishti that several devotees credit with changing their fortunes. Her eyes were bright and there was a strange depth to them. The expression was playful, innocent and mischievous at the same time.

For those accustomed to discourses from spiritual figures, Shri Radhe Maa, who rarely speaks, may come across as unusual. That is quite correct because She is not just unusual, She is extraordinary. When devotees present themselves for Her darshan, Her drishti takes on a special intensity. It turns even more powerful during days that are special to the Goddess and Lord Shiva.

The annual jagran that is being held on her birthday on March 3 to honour the Divine Feminine is one such event. The jagran, which is in its ninth year, is expected to attract devotees of Shri Radhe Maa across the world. Be there to experience Ma’s transforming drishti which grants peace, abundance and happiness to her devotees.   


As spoken to Satish Purohit

Call on 9820969020 for free passes to the Ma Jagadamba Jagran at the Goregaon Film City ground in Mumbai on March 3

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