YOGINI, the Enlightened Woman

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Aham Prema
I am Divine Love

"A Yogini is one who is possessed of magical powers,’’ so we find in the Thousand Names of Goddess Bhavani. Yet the foremost of these magic powers is not the power to change the external world but the ability to realize the Divine reality within ourselves. In the mythology of the Devi (Goddess), the Mother archetype shapes herself through mystery, beauty and abundance pervading all of life. The supreme Shakti of Para Shiva, the Absolute Reality, She is ever willing to create, yield or generate universal energies. She is the supreme ruler of the universe who can grant all blessings and assuage all sorrows. The Yogini reflects her energies in the human world.

A true Yogini is an enlightened woman with exuberant passion, spiritual powers and deep insight. A woman attaining a transcendental state through sadhana becomes a celestial Yogini, a female adept at Yoga. She carries the energy of the Goddess within herself. The Yogini unfolds the mystic beauty and power of the Goddess through her transformational force of the Divine feminine. The Yogini’s benign nature leads one to the supreme reality of oneness, which is an ever blissful state, resting in the inextinguishable flame of the spiritual heart.

Yoginis communicate a sense of freedom and a sheer mastery in whatever they do in life, whether it is mundane activities or deep meditation. Their compelling gaze can hypnotize even a great yogi. In the ancient literature, it is said that Deities called Yoginis are capable of changing their physical forms at will, carrying all of nature in their demeanor and expression. There are sixty four such Yoginis through which the secret forces of nature operate.

In addition to these ‘cosmic’ Yogini forces, Tantric scholars have written about the human Yogini as an independent, outspoken, forthright woman with a gracefulness of spirit. She is the feminine counterpart of the great Yogi and carries similar insights, faculties and energies but with a special beauty, grace and delight. Besides great Yogis, there is a tradition of great Yoginis, either along with the Yogis or on their own. For example, Mahavatar Babaji, the great immortal guru of Kriya Yoga is said to have such a Yogini counterpart.

Tantric texts honor both women and the Earth alike as sources of energy, vitality, and sustenance, providing physical and spiritual well-being. The Divine Mother holds the key to all lasting regeneration in this ecological age of strife and turbulence. Reconnecting with the sacred feminine energy of the universe allows us to restore the Divine balance within ourselves, celebrating the Devi power, mystery and magic of transformation through which all life breathes and evolves. In our surrender to the supreme power of the Mother Goddess, she guides us through her Maya, the world of illusion, taking us beyond all ignorance, suffering and pain. The unifying power of the Divine Mother can bring about the healing of all humanity and the entire planet, if we open up to her presence beneath, above and around us. The Yogini is a female Yoga adept who aids the Mother Goddess in her work of healing the planet.

In Hindu thought, the Yogini represents the Yoga Shakti herself, the Kundalini or serpent power, which she embodies. The Yogini is also the foremost of the resident powers or female Deities of the different chakras (called Dakinis), through which the chakras are energized. The Yogini possesses the inner power of Yoga and can awaken it in others, not only generally but at any point or place in the body or mind where she directs her attention. One’s ability to achieve the higher states of Yoga can be facilitated by an association with such a Yogini who reflects this higher power of Yoga. Such a Yogini is much more than a woman asana expert. She can play with the full spectrum of the powers of consciousness, mind, heart, soul and Prana, even while sitting still. She is particularly adept at mantra, ritual and the invocation of the Divine forces.