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I love to explore the Divine Feminine and write about Goddesses. For a list of those, click on the link: Goddesses. In order to become more balanced within ourselves and, through that, to bring greater balance and harmony to the world around us, we must find greater balance between the masculine and feminine energies within ourselves that each one of us possesses, regardless of physical gender or any other ways of self-identification.

Goddess of Creation, Destruction & Death

Kali is the Hindu Goddess of creation, death and destruction. Superstitiously inclined people will fear her and there have been some cults where humans were sacrificed to appease the Goddess. This brought her a very bad reputation when, in fact, nothing is further from the truth. The times were tales of living nightmares undermined the glory of a powerful female deity should be long over and the demonization of the divine feminine as anything but a mother and nurturer by a patriarchal system that fears and suppresses women have been allowed to go unchecked long enough.


It is time to reclaim the divine feminine in all its forms, the mother, as well as the destroyer, the creator, as well as the harbinger of death. Life is a never-ending cycle and where there is birth, there has to be death. The old must make room for the new in order for the flow of life to go forth unhindered and uninhibited. To let go of something old that no longer serves you is not material for nightmares, but a way out of them in order for you to be able to create a new and happier, healthier life.


So I urge you to meet Kali with an open mind. She is neither the bloodthirsty avenger who rages out of fear and for survival, from a position of a victim, trying to slay her oppressors nor is she timid or volatile. She is the force of liberation, she brings with her revolution. Kali is the wild torrent that tears with her all that is in her path, destroying, uprooting, hurling things away. She doesn’t do gentle. She is fierce, wild, courageous and untamed.


But let us look into her mythology to shine a light on the lady who works with your shadow sides, a Dark Goddess, as those are called. She is in the company of an illustrious group of Goddesses that span all cultures and ages, including Goddesses such as Nyx, Cerridwen, Hecate and Serket to name but a few.


Kali Maa is the known as the Dark Mother. She is the Goddess of creation, preservation and destruction. Her depictions are usually quite fearful. She is portrayed in black colour, which symbolises her all-embracing and mystical nature, her tongue is sticking out, she wears a garland of skulls around her neck, dances on corpses and holds a severed demon’s head and a sword in two of her four hands which she is usually depicted with.


The Tantric Teachings


She is the raging form of the Mother Goddess Shakti and there are references of her not having been created but instead having sprung from Durga’s forehead, as they were all merely different aspects of one and the same Goddess. However, her destructive powers go against evil forces and demons, rather than that she would be requiring innocent human sacrifices to have her temper appeased. In the Mahanirvana Tantra (Translation by Arthur Avalon) she is mentioned. It says, “Just as all colours disappear in black, so all names and forms disappear in her.”


Kali has a very soft and loving side. It is the root of affection that flows through the world through women. Rather than looking down on women or fearing them as a source of violence and evil, the make worshipper of Kali bows before women as his teachers.


One of the most famous Hindu myths of Goddess Kali is the slaying of the demon Raktabija whose name literally means blood-seed. Every time his blood spilt onto the ground, he was able to create more demons and he caused a great deal of trouble with people and gods alike. It sounds like a slightly amended version of a vampire story, doesn’t it? When the demon fought a battle against other Goddesses, he was able to clone himself in this way, so the more of his blood poured forth, the more versions of himself there were.


Goddess Kali joined the battle and with her tongue licked up all of his blood while the others wounded him. Thus, the Goddesses were able to overcome the demon and Kali devoured his duplicates in her mouth. Thus, ultimately, the demon Raktabija was annihilated. It is stories like this that remind us of the true power of women. They are more than capable of stepping up and doing the right thing. They are warriors, defenders and protectors. They can set clear boundaries and keep evil at bay or even destroy it, literally, although most times metaphorically.


Kali is a very empowering Goddess and she brings liberation through her strength and fierceness. Hers is not the path of diplomacy because in some situations in life, you have to take a firm stand and clearly express what it is you want or don’t want and ensure that these boundaries are protected by you and respected by others.


Women's Liberation


Kali is a very empowering Goddess and she brings liberation through her strength and fierceness. Hers is not the path of diplomacy because in some situations in life, you have to take a firm stand and clearly express what it is you want or don’t want and ensure that these boundaries are protected by you and respected by others.


It is believed that women are created by Kali and can easily adopt her form when needed. This is true because the divine feminine power when fully embraced can be harnessed in its totality. Kali is an aspect of our own psyche, often suppressed and conditioned out of us. How many women have been taught to be nice, say yes and try to wind themselves out covertly from difficult situations, rather than taking a clear stand against oppressors and aggressors, or even better, for themselves, for their own needs and dreams? How often put women their own needs last in favour of job, family and friends, or a good cause to help others in need, often sacrificing their own happiness.


Kali steps into your life, not like a breath of fresh air, but as a hurricane, uprooting all that no longer serves you and clears the path for the light to touch where there were previously only shadows. These shadows are now being illumined, eradicated or, even better, turned into superpowers. Kali brings change not as a gentle budding of new ideas and perspectives, but as a revolution of epic proportions. But she does so out of love for you. Being divine, she is unconditional love by default, and whatever it is you need at the time to forge ahead on your soul path journey, is what you will get.


And if what you need is a warrior queen to enable you to stand up for yourself, you needn’t watch Xena and wish you had all those martial arts skills, you can draw on your inner Kali because she is there, usually buried deep down and hidden, but there nonetheless. You can dig her out, dust her off and swing her spiritual sword, slay those demons in your path, your fears, your anger, your victimhood, and come out victorious, as the conqueror of your own destiny.


At this point, I would like to mention the Goddess Power Oracle card deck by Collette Baron-Reid. In one of the videos she uploaded on YouTube, she spoke about the creation process of the deck and she mentioned that the Goddess Kali had first been included, but then taken out again. However, Kali had her own ideas. She appeared to Collette in a vision, telling her, she had to be in the deck and her picture should be a beautiful one, not a scary one, so modern women would not turn away from her in fear, but embrace her ferocious power by being able to identify with her.


The Deified Self-Image


Incidentally, this was also the reason that I changed my images in my early Goddess blogs from the traditional depictions and photos of statues to photos and in some cases paintings of modern women. I was asked in one comment in my Facebook group by a lady why I had chosen to portray my Goddesses as beautiful women, sirens, as she called them, and indeed, this is a valid question, as there is an ongoing discussion about the over-sexualisation of deities, male and female, in modern art. Where to draw the line?


I find this question not only important but absolutely vital to answer for yourself in your own creative work. As I am not a gifted painter, I have opted to choose photos or paintings from stock pictures that I felt portrayed the essence of the particular God or Goddess to me. As to my own personal answer to this question, and I am very much for everyone making up their own minds on the matter for themselves, I meditated and felt into the feeling of self-love, of situations when I felt strong, powerful, beautiful and invincible when I was one with creation.


I tapped into the feeling of when I was in complete divine flow, and I didn’t see myself as an overweight woman with skin rashes and shaggy hair. I felt like a beautiful woman, I felt divine, vibrant, healthy, forgetting my physical ailments and disabilities. I felt like a million dollars. My women depict that beauty, that confidence and radiance. They are not sexualised in the way a porn star’s fantasy costume would look like or the way female avatars are portrayed in computer games.


My Goddesses do not mean to suggest you can only be divine, if you’re young and beautiful (indeed, there are a couple of very beautiful old women, too) but rather, they portray the feeling you should carry inside of you, the beauty and radiance of your spirit and allow it to shine. Just as a Goddess is an archetype, a personified aspect of your own psyche so is any depiction of her, whether a traditional ancient or a creative modern one, a personification of the emotion she carries inside you when you are in tune with her energy.


This answer may not be satisfactory to everyone but it is my answer and my personal truth and I am very happy for you to share or not to share it. What I find most important that we, in this, as in all aspects of our lives, use the powers of Kali to liberate ourselves from victimhood, fear of judgment and feelings of inadequacy, and make up our own minds, live our own personal truth and preferences, for only then are we truly free.


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In my romance novel In the Event of Love, the female MC Charlotte is at a party to meet the man she is interested in. This party is hosted by a hip hop star who is a drunk, drug-using womaniser.


He invites her to sit with him, but instead of making polite excuses, Charlotte states clearly that she has no interest in him and puts him in his place, setting clear boundaries and not getting drawn into a prolonged discussion or worse, lets herself be dominated into doing something she isn’t comfortable with, like sitting down beside the rapper and having a drink with him, which most certainly would lead to her having to fend his verbal and physical advances off.


Charlotte embraces the power and energy of the Goddess Kali to take charge of the situation and control the man instead.


For a short excursion into the historical development of the Goddess Kali from prehistoric times until today, watch this YouTube video by Epified.

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