5 Representations of Maa Kali That Will Leave You Speechless

Maa Kali is worshipped in Hinduism for her fierce and ferocious nature. She is known as the eternal night. The Rig Veda has a 'hymn to the night' that states there are two types of nights - one for mortal beings and one for the divine, in which ephemeral activity comes to a standstill. Maa Kali appears to us in countless ways, representing the power of consciousness in its highest form as a divine mother. She has eleven forms that represent every subsequent level of awareness, all the way down to our ordinary unenlightened state. Through her countless forms and attributes, Kali is the sole reality.

Here are seven representations of Maa Kali that will leave you speechless:


1. Mahakali Hand-painted in Kalighat Style by Manoranjan Chitrakar


Mahakali Handpainted in Kalighat Style by Manoranjan Chitrakar


This unique illustration of Maa Kaali is a powerful addition to any space. It brings much-needed balancing ambisexual energy to your home, reminding us that we are not purely unisexual organisms. Manoranjan Chitrakar's illustration depicts the "Ardhanarishvara," an androgynous deity composed of the deities Shiva and his consort Parvati. It represents the synthesis of masculine and feminine energies, highlighting the importance of embracing both aspects of ourselves. Conceptually, the merger of opposites produces the true rhythm of life, and the Ardhanarishvara reminds us that this union is not achieved through negation, but rather through positive experiences.


2. Kankali Mata Gond Painting by Venkat Shyam


Kankali Mata Gond Painting by Venkat Shyam


In many regions across India, particularly in Central India, Devi Kali Maa is known as Kankali Mata. Her name is believed to be derived from the Kankali temple, with the word "Kankal" meaning skeleton and "Maa Kali" referring to the goddess herself. In Venkat Shyaam's painting, Kali Maa stands on a bed of nails and is surrounded by tridents, depicted in vibrant colors with a smile on her face. This serene painting provides a stark contrast to other depictions of Kali Maa, highlighting how different perspectives can view divinity in a unique light.


3. Kali Maa Painted in Kalighat Style by Manoranjan Chitrakar


Kali Maa hand-painted in Kalighat style by Manoranjan Chitrakar


Kali Maa embodies the three gunas - the qualities of nature. Her teeth symbolize sattva, representing goodness and purity, which she utilizes to create life. The red tongue of Kali represents rajas, symbolizing passion and activity, which she utilizes to preserve life. However, her eyes are filled with rage and are also red, representing tamas, or ignorance. This blue-hued painting showcases the ferocity of Kali Maa's justice, depicting her as a powerful and uncompromising force.



Kaali Maa: Kalighat Painting by Uttam Chitrakar


Maa Kali is often portrayed as Dakshinakali, a young and beautiful goddess standing on the supine body of Shiva, who looks up to her with adoration. Shiva represents absolute consciousness, while Kali embodies consciousness in motion, a manifestation of duality that emerges from oneness. Kali is the source of overflowing joy that projects, sustains, and withdraws the universe. In one of her four hands, she displays the 'Varada Mudra,' a gesture of boon that reassures us to have no fear. Additionally, the dark hue of the Dakshinakali painting really grabs the attention of the viewer/devotee and serves as a reminder of Maa Kali's ferocity that protects them from evil and negativity.



5. Maa Kali Madhubani Painting by Pratima Bharti


Maa Kali Madhubani Painting by Pratima Bharti


Maa Kaali is often depicted as appearing naked or adorned with severed heads and hands, symbolizing her infinite and pure nature. She is so pure that she is also known as Digambari, which means "clad in space." Her skin is typically portrayed as black, although sometimes it is depicted as dark blue, representing her limitless, pervasive, and transcendent qualities. As the ultimate reality in its greatest unmanifested form, Maa Kaali embodies the essence of creation and destruction. This vertical, lengthy painting is a perfect addition to your home and is a distinctive art piece that will add a lot of character to your space.



Leave a comment