Lessons to Learn From the Awe Inspiring Personality of Goddess Durga

Tuesday, 01 December 2020


Lessons to Learn From the Awe Inspiring Personality of Goddess Durga

Tanushree Baruah | October 22, 2020 12:05 hrs

As we celebrate Durga Puja many of us are lamenting over the fact that this year we might have to keep it low-key. But there are many things we can do indoors taking inspiration from the goddess herself. We can reflect on the life lessons that she offers. 

According to legend, Durga was created for the slaying of the buffalo demon Mahisasura by Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva, and the lesser gods, who were otherwise powerless to overcome him. 

Embodying their collective energy (shakti), she is both derivative from the male divinities and the true source of their inner power. She is also greater than any of them.  

In the eastern parts of the country, she is known to come down to her mother's house during this time from Kailash for a visit, with her kids Laxmi, Saraswati, Ganesh, and Kartike. We assume she is kind of cross with Shiva for preferring to meditate than participate in all the fun and galore. But that's all right, she can even enjoy being on her own sometimes. After all, she is our mythological feminist.

So, what lessons can we learn from this awe-inspiring personality?

1. A lesson on inner strength: Stay put together with no matter the situation, there can be situations in life which seem like an impossible task to surmount. Develop an inner strength that is untouched by any external factors. You know you are riding the situation and not the other way around. 

2. Prim and proper: Every year during any festivities, we start with a cleanup. It's all about inviting refreshing energy, clearing up clutter, brings new energy and with a clear space and clear mind, possibilities are unbound. It's also a reminder to keep only the necessary, learning to organize things beforehand and in place, also it makes your resources readily available for use. Be it work or home. 

3. Be a multi-tasker: Durga Maa with her ten hands epitomizes the word 'multi-tasking.' Multi-tasking not only saves time, but it also keeps us mentally active and agile. Multi-tasking makes us independent of the vagaries of time and resources. Make a conscious effort to multitask so that you don't get overwhelmed by it. 

4. Super focused: The big, watchful eyes of the goddess are telling us to stay super vigilant and focused. We need to develop 360-degree vision, easier said than done. But let’s remember our focus determines our reality.   

5. Leadership is gender independent: When all other powerful Gods failed to stop the unstoppable demon Mahishasura, the Supreme Being too had to take the form of Goddess Durga to vanquish the unconquerable. And herein lies the biggest lesson our society can learn - leadership qualities are gender independent! 

So, next time you feel small or ineffective as a woman in any male-dominated department, draw on the power of the goddess and know that you might actually do a better job. 

6. Stay fashion-forward: Now we have to admit with her red Sari perfectly wrapped and accessories on point, she definitely believes in dressing to kill. Literally!  Even if you believe in sustainable clothing, we can always look put together, keeping our clothes neat, clean, and ironed out and it goes a long way in making an impression. A change of inner and outer attitude is perceivable not just to others, but even to ourselves.

Now next time when you look at the idol of Ma Durga, think of all these qualities, let it sink in, and feel yourself to be one with her force, killing all the qualities that bind you back to negative patterns in life. And before you know it, you are slaying demons inside and out.

(The author is a certified tarot reader, counsellor and a yoga teacher. The views expressed in the article are her own. She can be reached at: tanu_baruah@rediffmail.com.)

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