Thou Mother of Flames, Show Thy Face, Hidden Beneath the Veil of Cosmic Motion Pictures, by Paramhansa Yogananda


Maa Kali, painting by Dithi Mukherjee

O Mother of time, space, form, and relativity, Thou hast taken a finite form — the Kali-Divine, colossal, symbol-idol of all-sheltering nature. The invisible Spirit took Thy shape — a visible Mother Divine, in whom throbs the heart of all-protecting, mothering kindness.

O Mother Divine! The beauty-mark of the moon is set between Thy two dark eyebrows of twilight and night. Clouds of eternity veil Thy face. Gusts of prophetic lives often have dared to blow fitfully away Thy veil of mystery, momentarily revealing Thy face hiding from our stares of ignorance.

O Mother Divine, in the dawn of creation I beheld Thee on the track of time, roaming in the rustic attire of primitive culture, crowned with wild nature, and wearing the garland of unpolished minds and opaque, finite things.

In the noon-day of creation, I beheld Thee, wearing a garment of sunny mentalities, scorching souls with the heat of their own material fire. Thy body of activity sweated with restlessness. All Thy children felt the strain of struggle, and implored Thee to send the cooling breeze of peace.

In Thy noon-hour of fulfillment, Thou didst equally attend the forsaken slums of misery, the halls of festive prosperity, and the shrines of peaceful wisdom.

In Thine attire of mid-day mentalities, Thou didst travel through the fiestas of centuries, beholding the dream of human life and death, of the evolution and dissolution of planets, of the birth and death of civilizations, of the drama of nebulae-molding worlds — the dream of new-born planets and earthquakes and partial dissolutions. Then the dark night approached, and Thou didst wear the grim, dark veil of mourning, to put creation through the terrible but purifying ordeal of destruction’s fire. The sun burst and belched fire; the cosmic earthquake broke the vase of the sky, dropping embers of stars; and all creation was a furnace of flames. Everything was fire: matter, sin, darkness, all things were cast into Thy crucible, there to become pure, luminous.

Creation came from fire: beneath the ashes of matter, the embers of creation slept; and, rocked by Thy hands, O Mother Divine, creation awoke with its body of pure flames.

Thine one hand of power wakes unseen creative force to take many-hued, fair, finite forms. Another hand holds the astral sword of preservation, keeping all planets swinging in the rhythm of balance. Thy third hand clutches the severed head of cosmos, representing dissolution when all creation sleeps in Thee. Thy fourth hand stills the storms of delusion, bestowing the rays of salvation upon seeking devotees.

O Kali, Thou deep Mother of creative activity, wearing a garland of human minds; the rhythm of Thy wild dance of creation ceases only when Thy feet touch the transcendent breast of Thine Invisible Consort of Infinity — Shiva, in whom all creation has rest.

O Mother-Progress, the dance of Thy life I hear in the tinkling bells of little laughing, harmonious lives. On the floor of my tender thoughts, Thine inspirations softly dance in tune with the music of the spheres.

In the hall of creation, everywhere, O Kali, I hear the rhythm of Thy footsteps, dancing forcefully in the booming thunder, and softly in the song of atoms.

The Infinite sleeps beneath the shroud of magic delusion, and then, O Goddess of Forms, Thy fantastic dances of finitude begin on His bosom. Thou hast danced nearer than the throbs of my soul, and I have heard the symphony of Thy steps on the farthest horizon of my mind. Divine Mother, Thou mayest dance everywhere: but O, I pray Thee, do Thou ever play the music of Thy magic footsteps in the sacred sanctum of my soul!

O Goddess Kali, in Thy changing robes art woven the dreams of creation, preservation and destruction. Mother Divine, on the beauteous veil of Thy mind a million cinemas of cosmic dramas play. Thus dost Thou entertain and amuse Thy good children, and frighten Thy naughty ones.

Mother Divine, draw aside Thy glittering veil of cosmic motion pictures and show me Thy delusion-dispersing face of mercy.

from Whispers from Eternity
by Paramhansa Yogananda

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