Lakshmi Devi is the Goddess of beauty, wealth, and also of fertility. The Hindu goddess who possesses many other forms in her and is a completed by these diversities is Goddess Laxmi. Like her mother Goddess Durga, the Hindu goddess Laxmi also holds eight different forms withholding the significance of each. The concept of her eight different forms is also called as Ashta-Lakshmi.
16 Forms of wealth
The goddess Lakshmi is known for providing wealth in a total of 16 ways or forms that are the following:
and wealth in other forms,
- Devoted generation
All of these forms are to fulfil each individuals life with happiness and the needs of each human.
She is the complete form of all the necessities that a human requires in his lifetime. As you will read the article you will understand the need for each of the forms in a person’s life. The religion of Hinduism is detailed and has minor aspects always kept in mind while formatting rules and furthermore behind their practices. Religion takes care that each and every performance of form has vital meaning for their performance and is not a mere tradition.
Through the years the goddess Lakshmi is very popularly known as the goddess of money, wealth, and prosperity by all. Even today when a person receives wealth into his home or a first daughter is born in a Hindu family she is considered to be the Lakshmi of that house. They believe that this goddess brings prosperity. But the goddess does not just bring prosperity in one area but has various forms through which she inclines wealth, happiness, and a lot more abundance in her worshipper’s lives.
The Hindus worship every element that holds importance in their life may it be money, food, books, or anything that adds more importance to their life and future. They have beliefs in respecting and honoring all that they get from God and worship and are showing their gratefulness for it.
From the birth of an individual to death a person experienced a lot of changes and battles different struggles in life. The goddess depicts different forms that serve a purpose or an aid in each of the struggles a person faces during their lifetime. When a child is born the parents wish for the best and seek blessing the goddess has a form in it. When there are battles in life that you have to face and are struggling with it there is also a goddess to be worshipped for it. Similarly food all the vital necessities of life there is an incarnation of this goddess which can be worshipped so that she bestows her blessing upon you to bring you out of them. There are also different elements that each of the forms holds and each of these minute details as well as their own significance. Let us understand certain terms before we jump into knowing the purpose of each incarnation.
The two major positions of her hands are the Abhaya Mudra and the Varada Mudra.
1. The Abhaya Mudra – This position of the hand is where the right hand is held straight up. It portrays the gestures of fearlessness. It helps to gain feelings of peace and protection. It is also a gesture of safety and courage.
2. Varada Mudra – This position of the hand is where the left hand is held downwards and the fingers are pointed towards the downward position. It shows gestures of offering, giving, charity and welcoming. It is symbolic to the invitation the blessing and pouring out or bestowing the goodness upon the people of worshippers.
Now let us see the essential eight forms of the Goddess Lakshmi who has her different incarnations for all the situations in the life of mankind.
The 8 forms of the Goddess Ashta Laxmi are the following:
1. Adi-Lakshmi is also is known as the great Hindu goddess
One of the foremost forms of the Goddess Lakshmi is known as Adi-Lakshmi which is further called Maha-Lakshmi and also The Great Goddess Lakshmi in English and is known to be the ancient goddess of times. Goddess Lakshmi is the offspring of sage Bhrigu and the wife of Lord Vishnu who is also known as Narayana by some.
Maha Lakshmi is frequently portrayed as the company of Lord Vishnu who stays with him at his house in Vaikuntha and is also seen seated on his lap sometimes. The service she has given to Lord Vishnu is extended to the entire mankind and beyond even the universe. The goddess Aadi-Lakshmi is illustrated as a four-handed lady who holds a lotus flower with all a white flag in two hands and also an Abhaya mudra in the other two hands, of which the right one is straight, and furthermore the varada mudra, in which the right palm is kept up with her fingers edging downwards. It is also known to be Ramaa or the pourer of prosperity. The Indira is held close to her heart the lotus symbolises purity in it. Yep, goddess Adi Lakshmi is the foremost of all the 8 form or incarnations of Laksmi.
There are also dedicated and votes hymns for each of the Goddesses that are sung in their worship. She is worshipped mainly during the Diwali season in India.
2. Dhana-Lakshmi also is known as the goddess of prosperity
The meaning of the word Dhana is wealth which is in the form of finance and gold and precious metals. In a supernatural category, it could also even mean inner strength, faith, ability, moralities, and personality. The goddess of wealth and prosperity that is the Dhana Lakshmi represents this sector of the society and with her divine mercy and blessings, one can earn a multitude of abundance and wealth in his or her life. This goddess is worshipped during the festival of Diwali and is greeted with offerings of money and gold before her feet. The goddess multiplies your wealth and gives you abundance so that you lack nothing in your life. She bestows blessing for the goodness of a comfortably lived life. The Dhana is the money that she bestows to her worshippers when they offer her with their blessing received.
The portrayal of the Goddess Dhana Lakshmi is depicted as a six-handed/armed goddess dressed in a red saree, and holding a discussion in her five hands along with a conch, the sacred pot, bow and arrow and the sacred flower lotus. The last and with arm is in the Abhaya mudra position with an overflow of gold from it.
3. The Dhanya Lakshmi also known as the Goddess of Food
India is an agricultural country and here we also worship food and the grains that God gives us. Food is the source of life and holds importance in each person’s life because it is a means of living and existence. And so after the Dhana is the Dhanya form. The third incarnation of the Ashta-Lakshmi is called after Dhanya which means food grains in English. She is said to be a provider of ample of natural nutrients and vitamins that are necessary for a healthy mind and also for physical health. The Goddess Dhanya Lakshmi is the provider of wealth from agricultural resources as also giving all the essential nutrients to live a healthy and whole life.
She is worshipped to seek her blessings and mercy to take care of the abundance of the food supply through the year. To live a healthy and prosperous physical life one needs to consume the right amount of food and nutrients. Without which life could be unhealthy and full of sickness and diseases.
The Goddess of Foodgrains Dhanya Lakshmi is seen in a green garment and is eight-armed. Her hands cary two lotuses, a mace, a sheaf of paddy, bananas and sugarcane. One hand is Abhaya mudra and the other in varada mudra positions respectively.
4. Gaja-Lakshmi also is known as The Elephant Goddess
The fourth of the incarnations of the goddess Lakshmi is Gaja-Lakshmi or Elephant goddes. She has taken birth out of an ocean or Samudra Manthan. And is this known as the offspring of the oceans? There are beliefs that the Goddess Gaja Lakshmi helped Mudra with prosperity from the depths of the sea or ocean. Yep Elephant Goddess is the protector of the Hindus wealth, abundance, mercy, royalty and grace. The protection is also needed to guard us against all the kind of trouble that could come upon. There are situations which man has no knowledge to and is unknown to so it is important to pray to God to guard and protect our health and wealth so that we have a good life and live with prosperity and happiness.
The goddess Gaja Lakshmi is illustrated as a wonderful goddess surrounded by two elephants rinsing her with water as she is seated on the lotus. She is dressed in a red saree, and has four hands each of which has two lotuses in two of her hands and the other two hands are in the Abhaya mudra and the varada mudra positions.
5. Santana-Lakshmi also is known as The Goddess of Progeny
The fifth incarnation is the Goddess Santana Lakshmi. The name tells us that the meaning of this goddess is related to offspring and generations. The meaning of the word Santana is Progeny. That is the jewel of family life to be continued. The worship of Goddess Santana Lakshmi leads to divine prosperity of healthy and good life of your children. The responsibility of being a parent is worry some at times and also is a major change in one’s life. The blessing of God is must be able to take care of our children and to keep them healthy and blessed throughout their life. The Hindus or worshippers future generations are blessed by this goddess and she is worshipped for keeping them safe, sound and for the well being.
The Goddess Santana Lakshmi is illustrated with six hands in which three hands hold pitchers, a sword, and a shield. One of them is in the Abhaya mudra position. And the other holds a child, who is carrying a lotus flower in its hand.
6. Goddess Veera Lakshmi is also is known as The Goddess of Courage
The sixth incarnation of Lakshmi is the Goddess Veera. Yep name clearly tells us that Goddess Veera is the one who provides her worshippers with courage and strength in all the areas of life to live and fight against the battles in life. The goddess Veera Lakshmi is worshipped to gain strength and courage in life to overcome all the difficult times with faith and belief. She helps in such time by bestowing her blessings and removing the hurdles from the lives of her worshippers. Every person has battles that they fight in their lifetime. Without courage and encouragement, one can be dismayed and broken. The goddess of courage blesses her worshippers so that they are not discouraged but fight their battles with confidence and strength.
The Goddess Veera Lakshmi is portrayed wearing a red traditional saree and has a total of eight hands. She is carrying a discus, a bow, an arrow, a conch, a sword, gold or also a book and the other two hands are in Abhaya and varada mudra positions.
7. Goddess Vidya Lakshmi also is known as the Goddess of Knowledge
The seventh Goddess of the Ashta Lakshmi is the goddess Vidya Lakshmi. The name clearly tells us the meaning to be knowledge as well as to educate. The goddess does not just mean the education that one gets from schooling and by degrees in universities but is the overall knowledge that they get in their life by the experiences they live. And so, this incarnation of Goddess Vidya Lakshmi is the blesser of the understanding of the arts and sciences of the world. Knowledge is very essential in life without wisdom one will not be able to lead a whole life. So the goddess of knowledge is worshipped to attain understanding and wisdom in all parts of life and to make the future simpler and prosperous. In Hindu history educating is seen as a vital area of every person’s life. And they are believed to be well literate in their lifetime. Thought this goddess does not only give wisdom for the education in schools and colleges but also in important life lessons that mold a person into a better human being.
Similar to the Goddess Saraswati even Goddess Vidya Lakshmi is portrayed as seated on the lotus flower, wearing a white coloured saree. She has a total of four arms which carry a lotus in each of the to hands. Whereas the other two hands are in the Abhaya mudra and varada mudra position.
8. Goddess Vijaya Lakshmi also is known as the Goddess of Victory
The last and the eighth incarnations of Lakshmi is Goddess Vijaya Lakshmi. She says victory and this form of this goddess promise victory in all the areas of life the worshippers receive victory in all the battles and the headships of their life journey. To receive s complete victory in life this Goddess of Victory is worshipped. The life we all lived is expected to be victorious and successful. Life is not here to be a failure but to seek the blessings of the goddess of victory and live with full courage and confidence. She bestows her blessings to live a prosperous life with complete success and opportunities. Offerings are made to this goddess for receiving a positive result for future accomplishments.
She is also popularly known as Jaya Lakshmi. She is depicted sitting on a lotus dressed in a red saree and has a total of eight hands which carry a discus, a conch, a sword, a shield, a noose, and a lotus in each of them. The rest of the two hands are in the Abhaya mudra and varada mudra position.
All these forms of Lakshmi are for the main purpose of prosperity and goodness. While we live our lives the worshippers get the courage and hope to live and make their life worthwhile. The Goddess is made complete just like her mother by all these forms. And understanding each of them is very necessary to worship. These forms are created to make Hindu’s life easy and hurdle free while they are living on the earth. There are seasons and festivals where each of the forms is worshipped and praised to receive blessings from. The Hindu have Gods and Goddesses of many types and each of these types has their own significance and importance. These are the eight forms of Lakshmi that have been worshipped and followed since ancient times and are still worshipped by the Hindus. Bhakts and devotees make offerings and sacrifices to these Goddesses in order to receive blessings from her in abundance and whole.