SHARANYA Newsletter: Nov/Dec 2008
In This Issue:
SHARANYA's Kali Puja
Ganesha Mantra
Our Community Welcomes You!
Kali Puja CD of Chants & Invocations...
NEW! Kali Vidya
Jai Maa!
Contact Info


Upon the firm, broad earth, the all-begetting mother of the plants, that is supported by (divine) law, upon her propitious and kind, 
may we ever pass our lives! 

-from the Devī-Māhātmya
(as presented by Thomas Coburn)

It is from within the Mārkaṇḍeya Purāṇa that the explicit characterization of Devī as Great Goddess, the deity who transcends the world while enveloping it, is first found. From this purāṇa comes the Devī-Māhātmya, Hymns of Praise of the Goddess. This text is an entry point into the core of the Great Goddess tradition, one in which ultimate reality is portrayed as a feminine force. 

It relates the epithets of the goddess, her myths, and sings glorious hymns in her praise. It affirms her transcendence, internality (she is an interior phenomenon regardless of who or what manifests in exterior form), and immanence simultaneously without contradiction because all of these are manifestations of her power, śakti. The forms of power are many, but the fact of power is one.  

This purāṇa also connects the goddess to creation, thus linking her to women through the birth process and to nature because as Earth/earth she is also the vehicle for the creation of fruits, vegetables and other grown food.

The Mārkaṇḍeya Purāṇa has also been interpreted to symbolically identify the individual soul with the universal soul...she, as Mahāmāyā, is no other than the universal soul, the absolute, One.

Evidence of this understanding can be found in the text's portrayal of the goddess upon the battleground. She is, on the one hand, called upon by the gods to uphold the cosmic order by slaying demons, and on the other is lascivious in her attempts to do so-she kills all those in her path, stomps on bodies and laps blood from freshly severed heads. As such, she is the full complexity of a warrior and cosmic mother. She is the great protectress guarding and maintaining the cosmic order.

Join us in exploring Maa through Her many faces, including that of the Dark Goddess...

Learn more >>


SHARANYA's Kali Puja

 Worship the Divine Mother
in a Western Tantrick Tradition

Come be with us in celebration of Goddess Kali this Sunday. Together we will honor the Dark Goddess, Kali Maa, in Her many forms through devotional and (r)evolutionary worship that brings together traditions of East and West. At SHARANYA's Kali Puja, all are welcome to dive into Her all-encompassing, sweet and powerful embrace. Pujas in the Sha'can tradition are fun, participatory, transformative and full of love for Maa.

We gather on Sunday, 11/30, at 5:30pm
and look forward to honoring the
Divine Mother with you.

Jai Maa Kali ki Jai!

Requested sliding scale donation is $15-21. No one is turned away for lack of funds - give what you can, even if it's just your love and devotion!

Please RSVP, make a donation, and reserve your place here.

We encourage you to wear red (Kali's sacred color), and to refrain from wearing black. You may bring flowers for the altar, and/or vegetarian sweets to share. We will have community time following the ceremony.

Puja Location Map >>



Devoted to Mahadevi
(The Great Goddess):
Ritual Practices of Sha'can and Shakta Tantra
An Introduction to Worship & Devotion of the Divine Mother
in a Western Tantrick Tradition

This three-part course is an introduction to worship and devotion of Mahadevi, the Great Goddess of Hinduism, the all-pervading Shakti, and Kali Maa, Dark Mother, the Supreme Goddess of Shakta Tantra. Participants will learn the context and content of worship in the living goddess tradition of Western Shakta Tantra called Sha'can. Puja basics, including how to honor Devi (Goddess) Kali at home, will be taught. This offering may be particularly rewarding if you are considering Daughters of Kali (open to women and men), are looking to incorporate Kali worship or worship of other forms of the Divine Mother from the Hindu tradition into your existing spiritual path, and/or are seeking a fuller experience with your dedicated worship in community.

Join us to gain an understanding of Devi and Her various manifestations, powerful and often mis-represented, through ritual, myth, historical perspective, lecture, authentic Tantrick practices, readings and group discussion. This series will culminate in a puja that participants co-create from their recently-learned Sha'can perspectives as infused with devotion born of personal sadhana (spiritual practice).

Let this course be your own mythic journey into and out of the underworld...let the Goddess of the Crossroads take your hand and guide you into an unfolding awareness of your Self as seen through Her eyes. Classes require reading and participation to enhance the experience. Come ready to engage Her mysteries!

Learn more about this and other class offerings... >>


Ganesha Mantra

This mantra is sung during our Kali Puja and other rites to invoke and honor Ganesha, Remover of Obstacles, He Who Challenges Us to Greater Potentials. This mantra invites engagement with Ganesha as we see him in our mind's eye and experience him through our delight in our worship.

Ganesha is playful, generous, and sweet; yet he is also fierce in his commitment to providing us with the obstacles we need in order to grow, learn, and change upon the spiritual path. His ways are comforting and gentle, direct and stubborn. With Ganesha, we may not immediately see the point being made, but it will become clear enough what he expects of us...perhaps even that we must get out of our own way!

Utilize this mantra to play with the child within, connect to joy and delight, and know the Divine through everyday actions. Use this mantra in your daily practice to open your heart to fun, wonder, awe and the spark of imagination that gets us into trouble if we're not careful. Come to know Ganesha, beloved Ganapati, and remember the reason you started the journey.



Read more and listen to the mantra >>


Our Community Welcomes You!

Come sing and worship with us!

Interested in lending your love of Maa, your creativity, your inspiration to Kali Puja?
Feel free to bring us your ideas and energy. We have many ways for you to become immediately and directly involved in a vibrant and growing spiritual community, and look forward to your unique expression of joy in Her name. We welcome your suggestions too; your experience, expertise, and desire can inform many of the ways we do Her work in the world!

Click here to learn more about joining in the celebration of Her through SHARANYA!

And of course, stay in touch with us! Were you forwarded this newsletter by a friend?

Click here to receive your own newsletter! >>


Kali Puja CD of Chants & Invocations...

Coming in Early 2009!

Learn more about the tradition that inspires our worship... >>


NEW! Kali Vidya

Join us as we come together at Kali Vidya to explore through writings, poetry, reflection, discussion, devotion, spiritual technologies and individual sadhana (spiritual practice) the goddess-worshiping branch of Hinduism known as Shakta Tantra, the earth-based spirituality of Witchcraft, and the synchretism of faith called Sha'can...A Western Shakta Tantra.

Our courses are designed to help all spiritual seekers contextualize the ancient and living goddess traditions within the socio-cultural and psycho-spiritual framework of today's world, creating lived spaces for the Divine in all Her forms...including those of the Sacred personal practice and devotion.

If you seek community and want to learn more about SHARANYA's spiritual path, we welcome you to our first community offering, Devoted to Devi: Embracing Tradition, Walking the Path. Join this class in our open source, interactive online forum!

Registration is now OPEN and closes at year-end
or when the class size reaches our maximum.

Click here to register >>


Jai Maa!

Answers to some of your most frequently asked questions... >>



SHARANYA: The Maa Batakali Cultural Mission, Inc. is a 501(c)3 non-profit Devi Mandir (Goddess Temple). All donations are tax-deductible. For more information about upcoming events, please visit or email All are welcome!

Jai Maa!


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