In this free improvisation on a pair of Kali Yantras, Western and Eastern Mandala traditions alike share the sacred geometric form and its Tantric alchemy. My next post will feature my original illustrations of the Yoga Wisdom Goddesses or Mahavidyas – including Kali – for Kavitha Chinnaiyan’s thoughtful book and teaching: “Shakti Rising”. The book was published in 2017,
Here is a sketch of Mother Kali’s ecstatic great lover, the Bengali saint Ramakrishna:
Early writings from Journal – 3 October 2010
Outside there is a gale. The house is a ship. Today I contemplate the two Kali Yantras my friend in Australia sent.
Mother Kali’s four gated field is red. Eight rose/lotus petals with indigo stems encircle a big black sphere. Inside the black sphere is a Tetrahedron: five white womb triangles with a white bindu or apex, point towards you all her dark, cosmic power: AMA the dark womb is herself so powerful she is almost Yang.
(February 2019 – I drew for today this freehand copy:)
In the East and in Platonic wisdom the Tetrahedron is nature’s most stable form. Whether the apex points downwards (female/Shakti triad) or upwards from baseline (male/Siva triad), the Triad is produced to rest on any of its four sides. No wonder that in the Western Mystery tradition J H V H is named Tetragrammaton, with the hidden fourth-dimension factor which seeds it.
In the Tetragrammaton cycles of YOD HEH VAV HEH, the second-HEH grows from centre of the triangle YOD HEH VAV, giving birth to new YOD, new cycle. So the second HEH in the cycle is pregnancy! The letter HEH in Tetragrammaton has the female function, but in Tarot Alphabet, HEH’s character is male, assigned to Aries and the Emperor. The Yin is so filled with fertility, she comes forth as the Son, the Yang.
The strange potency conjoins man and woman, of whom the most uncompromisingly transformative is woman.
I begin to get a feel of Kali, her luminously dark velvet field, her awesome sexual shout, her red tongue, her necklace of skulls … In today’s first Yantra (Yangtra!), the womb triangle/tetrahedron accommodates Siva’s fiery light through her body, without disturbing the total blackness of her sphere.
Mother Kali in India needs strong devotees, for she upsets their lives and floods their villages. Ramakrishna of Bengal embodied her devoted Tantric playfellow . And he was a crazy wisdom, often off his head.
Perhaps Kali arouses a man’s chaotic feminine oracle, but in a woman she becomes peace, a peace with gleaming eyes, white, black, red, softening to indigo rose violet in her valleys.
Kali is the wild weather that flows from the Himalayas.
One of the tributaries of Ganges is Kali Gandaki, which flows from the Tibetan watershed between those regal 8,000 metre consorts Dhaulagiri and Annapurna – the man and the woman, each is a mountain range. Dhaulagiri is priapic and dramatically visible. Annapurna is mostly concealed behind a vast shadowing cirque of Nilgiri or cloud mountains.
Ganges is a royal water serpent through the plains.
Supposedly, my natal Neptune in Libra (square Jupiter in Capricorn) epitomises my life-long offerings to Dhaulagiri and Annapurna.
Kali is a Seer.
A word on Yantra …
Yantras are geometrical constructs of Tantra – an art of touch and fluid union. One of Tantra’s translated meanings is “the web” or connectivity. In these sketches I romp through a few Western forms and symbols of Yantra:
PART TWO – October 2010
Six is the lily, with a six starred sun inside. The man blossoms into feminine. The Lovers are soul triads which marry. Consider the lilies of the field, they toil not, nor do they spin. Solomon in all his glory is not as these.
Within the Flower of Solomon’s Seal or Shield, Solomon in all his glory is the Temple and the intuition. The Star of David – Solomon’s son? or father? – is ABEN, the Stone: the fluidity of the Philosopher’s stone or elixir: the Seal becoming the son.
Lilies grow with the roses in the Magician’s garden. The rose is grown from the heart of the Cross formed of six squares: the rose is wrapped within the Cube of Space.
The rose has multiples of five petals – her cultivation and extravagance.
Five is the female rose, pentagonal star of humankind representing the five limbs or senses. Red is the colour-tone of Mars and of desire. “Five” suggests 1+4, 14 the gematria (number) of DVD (in Hebrew, dovid) the Beloved; and also of Gold – the work of the Sun.
The latin Cross (it folds up into a cube) is the field. The Star is higher consciousness. The inner Pentagram is humankind, and the root, flower and seed of human desire.
Kali the goddess is black and fierce. In Kabbalah she might be seen as Binah’s AMA, the dark womb.
The Chamundra Kali Yantra has five pink-red petalled concentric waves: the centre one is a Seal of Solomon (double Tetrahedron) coloured red – inside a white octagon of two squares. Like the great Sri Chakra Yantra, she draws inward and flows outward simultaneously: very quiet and at peace. She opens from inside a black field of Four Gates.
So she also expresses the Akasha Tejas tattva, or (in the western School) the whole Tree of Life inside an egg (field) of AIN SOF, the Endless. With six in the middle, she emanates as five rings, and is enclosed in a field of four.
(February 2019 – Like the other Kali Yantra in this post, I draw it for myself. To embody Her birth-giving energy, I copied the computer-generated version I was sent. The physical contact allows Nature’s irregularities to occur – as blown by wind and wave.)
Yantras are fertile seeds and signs. They need to be seen four-dimensionally – that is, as a tree or fountain. They rise through the orbital system or cross-sectional rings of time. They suggest the growth of the tree from root and shoot, encompassing all its seasons, seeds and bird-life. This Yantra has Priapus in the centre, 8-pointed, white and red, surrounded by four pulses (orgasmic time-rings) of the Rose, and then again by the Cube of Space which is black. Priapus contains the feminine of the male flower, and at the heart is a white bindu. So, the Chamundra Yantra is Mother Kali’s kundalini shakti or kus. How sweetly these things translate.
And … in this light, this Yantra, a drawing to come some day, and how to see it? – how Siva couples with this full-blown dark-rose kus of Kali. Siva is nearly always painted white, though sometimes he has a peacock-blue throat. His is a Yogic phallus. He sits in Yoga (union) and it points up within him, and inside him there is Mother Kali absorbing it all, and creating a wild, rumbustious universe.
Any such focus is good, for holding the mind quiet. The Yantra is held loosely, lightly in my being. Note how between the dark-rose outward petalling, the Akashic space lightens from black through indigo to sky. BINAH – the cosmic sphere of Understanding: stand-under the waterfall.
The above is some writing I discovered from nearly ten years ago.
Below is the sketch and my original portrait of Kali in 2016 for Kavitha’s book “Shakti Rising“. See my next post for originals of the other nine yogic Mahavidyas.
My adventure invites fellow travellers. I am a poet, an artist and a seer. I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom. See also Aquariel
All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012-2019. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/