The Queen of the Universe
Bhuvaneshvari means the Queen or ruler
(feminine, Ishvari) of the universe or realm of being (Bhuvana).
She is the Divine Mother as the Queen of all the worlds. All the
universe is her body and all beings are ornaments on her infinite being.
She carries all the worlds as a flowering of her own Self-nature.
She is thus related to Sundari and to Rajarajeshvari, the supreme Lady
of the universe.
The Goddess represents space.
Space is the Mother or Matrix in which all creatures come into being.
She is the field in which all things grow. She is the receptive spirit
who gives space to allow all things their place and function. She
is the cosmic womb that gives birth to all the worlds. As space,
Bhuvaneshvari is complementary to Kali who is time; they are the two main
faces of the Goddess as both the infinite and the eternal. Bhuvaneshvari
creates the stage on which Kali performs her dance of life and death.
As the stage Bhuvaneshvari is also the witness, the observer and the enjoyer
of the dance.
As Kali creates events in time, so Bhuvaneshvari
creates objects in space. All events are merely episodes in
the Devine Mother Kali who is time. All places are merely phases
of the dance of the Divine Mother Bhuvaneshvari who is space. The
Goddess is the place, the field, the matrix in which we act to manifest
the Gods. Knowing her as the ground on which we stand and the reality
which pervades us, we gain the capacity (Shakti) to accomplish the highest
actions, which are the practice of Yoga. Returning to her passive
presence, we ourselves become the field in which the Gods, the cosmic powers,
can be born and assume their roles in the cosmic creative unfoldment.
Bhuvaneshvari is the cosmos (Bhuvana)
personified as a Goddess. To worship her promotes a cosmic vision
and frees us from the narrowness of opinion and belief. She helps
us go beyond all identifications with creed, class, race, sex, nation
and religion, to a universal understanding. She gives us world vision,
a global understanding, and a sense of the infinite.
As the power that measures out the universe,
Bhuvaneshvari is called Maya, which also means illusion. When things
are measured we can become caught in their limited forms and forget the
underlying unitary space in which they appear. This is how illusion
arises. All manifest forms are merely waves in the infinite space
of the Divine Mother. We must learn to see the space of the Mother, which is the
embrace of consciousness, in all he apparent objects of the world, and
no longer take their diverse forms as reality.
As Kali is the power of action (kriya-shakti)
and Sundari is the power of knowledge (jnana-shakti), Bhuvaneshvari is
the power of love (iccha-shakti). Love creates space and gives freedom.
It does not limit or try to posses, which is the action of selfish desire.
Yet the space of love is not an empty or unfriendly space, it is a space
that nurtures and gives room to grow and flower. If love does not
give space, it is not a Divine Love.
Bhuvaneshvari has a form like Sundari,
whom she resembles in many ways, which reveals her beneficent nature.
She has the colour of the rising sun, with the crescent moon on her head,
with four hands and three eyes. She holds in two hands the noose
and the goad. With her other two hands she gives the gestures that
grant boons and dispel fears.
The mantra for Bhuvaneshwari is the single
syllable Hirim. Hirim is one of the most important of all mantras.
It is called the Devi Pranava, or the equivalent of Om for the Goddess.
Hirem refers to the heart (Hridaya). It also relates to Hri, which
Bhuvaneshvari as the Mother can be worshipped
through the mantra Ma, which is the natural sound for mother. This
mantra, like Hirim, can be used for the Divine Mother in all her forms.
The Divine Mother is called Shri Ma (respected, beautiful or resplendent
Mother), which can also be used as a mantra for her.