The literal meaning of Diwali in Sanskrit means a ‘row of lamps’. The most popular tradition of Diwali is filling little clay lamps with oil and wick and lighting them in rows all over the house. Goddess Laxmi plays a major role in this festival. Lakshmi Puja is an auspicious festival which is celebrated on the third day of Diwali in almost every Hindu household as a part of Diwali celebration. According to legend, Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth who visits her devotees and bestows them with wealth, prosperity and good health. To welcome the Goddess, devotees clean their houses, decorate them with finery and lights, and prepare sweet treats and delicacies as offerings.
Ashta Lakshmi are a group of eight Goddesses, who are secondary manifestations of Goddess Shri Lakshmi. They are worshipped in various forms during Diwali and each form of Lakshmi holds a special significance. Let us find out.
Adi Lakshmi :
An ancient form of Lakshmi and incarnation of Lakshmi as daughter of the sage Bhrigu. Four-armed, carries a lotus and a white flag, other two arms in Abhaya mudra and varada mudra.
Sanatana Lakshmi :
Bestower of offspring, six armed, carries two kalashas, sword, shield and a child on her lap. A hand in Abhaya mudra and the other holding the child. The child holds a lotus.
Dhana Lakshmi :
For money and gold. Six-armed, in red garments, carries chakra, shankha, kalasha or Amrita kumbha, bow-arrow, a lotus and an arm in abhaya mudra with gold coins falling from it.
Dhanya Lakshmi :
Giver of agricultural wealth. Eight-armed, in green garments, carries two lotuses, gada, paddy crop, sugarcane, bananas, other two hands in abhaya mudra and varada mudra.
Dhairya Lakshmi :
Bestower of valour in battles and courage and strength for overcoming difficulties in life.Eight-armed, in red garments, carries chakra, shankh, bow, arrow, trishul, a bundle of palm leaf scriptures, other two hands in abhaya mudra and varada mudra.
Gaja Lakshmi :
Giver of animal wealth, like cattle and elephants. Swami Chidananda interprets Gaja Lakshmi as giver of power of royalty. According to Hindu mythology, Gaja Lakshmi brought back the wealth lost by Indra from the ocean. Vasudha Narayanan interpret the name as “one who is worshipped by elephants”. Four-armed, in red garments, carries two lotuses, other two arms in abhaya mudra and varada mudra, surrounded by two elephants bathing her with water pots.
Vidya Lakshmi :
The bestower of knowledge of arts and sciences.
Vijaya Lakshmi :
Giver of victory, not only in battles but also in conquering hurdles in order to beget success.Eight-armed, in red garments, carries chakra, shankh, sword, shield, lotus, pasha, other two hands in abhaya mudra and varada mudra.
Diwali is an auspicious time to bring home the giver of wealth, prosperity and fortune. It is also the perfect time to send gifts to India from USA. This trusted online shopping portal provides you with many Diwali gifts to India ideas for Lakshmi Puja like puja thalis.