Progressive Hinduism, Ecology and Goddesses
Just Starting Out With Bhumi and Diwali
Diwali and Bhumi
On October 10 there will be a Diwali Show in Minneapolis, MN. I will have an opportunity to present a speech on Bhumi and her connection to Diwali. About a year ago, I started to deliver short Kathas on the goddesses and ecology at Vishnu and Gaatryi Mandirs in Minneapolis. I have enjoyed every minute which I have shared my insights on the goddesses and ecology. Pandit Rajin Balgobind is my Guru and my inspiration in all the Kathas and speeches I have given on the topics. I am thinking of him today just days before he does a series of Kathas on Navratri, the celebration of the nine forms of the Mother.
In Sanskrit, Bhumi Devi means the goddess who is the Earth. Her connection to Diwali is very interesting. When you think of Diwali other goddesses come to mind, yet she is there with them all. Who is she? She is the one who sustains everything. She is the consort of Varaha, the 3rd Avatar of Vishnu, who took the form of a wild boar. Why is her story important? She tells us about the Earth itself, and how we are involved with our effect on the Earth. Varaha comes in to save Bhumi from the demon who mined out all the gold from the Earth. He was a savior, but in the story of Diwali Bhumi is the one who is the savior.
Bhumi is very tied to story of Diwali through her connection with Krishna and her defeat of a powerful demon. She incarnated as Krishna's 3rd wife, Satyabhama, who enlisted the help of the sacred bird, Garuda, to defeat a nasty demon called Narakasura who was so nasty that he wounded Krishna. Satyabhama became very angry and defeated the demon. The demon made one final request that his death be remembered every year with a display of colorful lights. This is celebrated every year at Diwali, the Festival of Lights.
Bhumi asks us to give her all the respect she deserves. What have we done for Mother Earth lately? How are we treating her? Do we treat her like our own mothers? Just imagine if we all treated the Earth like our own mothers. If we did this, we would be thinking about how we would effect future generations. I had a personal experience with her once. I saw her in a vision in the woods. She was arrayed in a beautiful golden gown and was part of the whole Earth. It just made me think of my own mother. I will close with this thought by Jane Goodale, the conservationist, humanitarian, and biologist who studied the great apes: "It will take each of us doing something for the Earth which will make the difference." Global warming is our challenge but it also our opportunity to bring change to the Earth.
Jai Shri Bhumi, Radhapriestess