Saturday, 23 November 2013
Kali Sadhana Day 4
I've been thinking a lot about Kali, and about my approach to deity more generally. Partially inspired by this sadhana, partially by an email I received yesterday from someone I respect a great deal. She asked if I was sure I should be working with such a terrifying, destructive Goddess.
As for Kali being destructive, she has long been associated with death and fear. However, I see her more as about ending that which needs ending, and coping with fear, facing it with courage. Some might say this is a fluffy bunny approach to a frightening Goddess often depicted with a necklace of skulls, and sometimes dismembered arms as a belt, with a bloody knife in hand.
Another perspective is to recognise that death is no longer such a terrifying concept in our day as it was in the past when infant mortality was a lot higher and the average age people lived to was much lower. Yes, death is still one of the great existentials of life, but it isn't as terrifying and all present as it used to be. And I feel that change is echoed in how we perceive a Goddess like Kali. She is no longer so much to be feared. Rather, the positives of her fierceness and fearlessness can be applied to help us destroy bad habits and face fears, which is my intent in this sadhana.
When I call on Kali, I call a sacred circle first, and close it after. I ground and centre, and focus my intent. I do not fear her qualities welling up and overwhelming me, as I feel I have put appropriate safeguards in place, and set my will in this practice clearly. For me, this is magic, not superstition, and I embrace Kali's help.