We have discussed about 28 goddesses in the first āvaraṇa, known as trilokyamohanacakra and these goddesses guard three outer walls of Śri Cakra. It is also interesting to note that beginning from trilokyamohanacakra, there are no male gods in any of the āvaraṇa-s. Even all the four gates of Śri Cakra are guarded only by goddesses.
Bhāvanopaniṣad says that our body is a replica of Śri Cakra and our body parts are related to these nine enclosures. In the first wall of trilokyamohanacakra, also known as bhūpura, there are ten siddhi devi-s. The outer most wall is guarded by siddhi devi-s because, siddhi-s are to be ignored, when one attains them. Sage Patañjali says in his Yoga Sūtra says that these siddhi-s are possible only if we develop the highest level of concentration and our ability to connect to an element (like air, water, etc) with our consciousness. In the present day world, attaining such siddhi-s is impossible and if one tries to practice this, with certainty it can be said that he is only wasting his time. Now, let us understand about these ten goddesses in the first wall.
1. Aṇimā means ability to become smaller than an atom.
2. Laghimā means ability to float in the air by making the body light.
3. Mahimā is the power to become huge.
4. Īśitava is the power of creativity and the ability to rule.
5. Vaśitva is the power to subjugate both living as well as insentient objects.
6. Prākāmya is the ability to get any task done in no time.
7. Bhukti siddhi is not mentioned by Sage Patañjali and this is out of the purview of eight siddhi-s known as aṣṭamasiddhi-s. It is the power to enjoy with what is attained. This siddhi is discussed only in tantric scriptures.
8. Icchā siddhi is also outside the purview of aṣṭamasiddhi-s referred by Patañjali. Some are of the opinion that sarvakāmasiddhi is icchāsiddhi. We go only by the ten goddesses mentioned in authentic texts and hence we consider icchāsiddhi and sarvakāmasiddhi as two different siddhi-s. Sometimes, sarvakāmasiddhi and prākāmyasiddhi are considered as the same. But tantric texts have different versions. Icchā siddhi means power to attain any form according to his will. He can become an ant and again he can become an elephant.
9. Prāpti is the power to go anywhere, even to other worlds.
10. Sarvakāma is fulfillment of all his desires.
(There could be certain variations while interpreting siddhi-s).
As discussed earlier, no male god can enter Śri Cakra. Goddesses who guard different cardinal points are known as siddhyaṁbā. The ten siddhyaṁba-s discussed above guard ten cardinal points. For example, Aṇimā siddhyaṁbā, guard eastern cardinal, Laghimā siddhyaṁbā is guarding the western cardinal, etc and other siddhyaṁbā-s and their cardinals can be found out from the chart attached to the previous article.
It is also said that out of these siddhyaṁbā-s, nine siddhyaṁbā-s represent navarasa or nine emotional states. Lalitā Sahasranāma 376 is śṛṅgāra-rasa- saṁpūrṇā, which is explained thus: “Lalitāmbikā is said to be the embodiment of extracts (rasa) of finer things in life. There are said to be eight to ten types of rasa-s, though only nine types of rasa-s are generally mentioned. These ten rasa-s are love (śṛṅgāra), heroism, disgust, anger, mirth, fear, pity, amazement, tranquillity and warmth.”
In the above interpretation, only nine types of emotional states are mentioned. The tenth one isniyati, which can be interpreted to mean prārabdha karma (that part of karma which is carved out of the total sum of karma accumulated over past several births and known as saṁcita karma; prārabdha karma is the karma meant for the present life and to be experienced in this life itself).Niyati also forms one of the six kañcuka-s (coverings) of māyā, as per Trika philosophy. Niyati is not included while interpreting Lalitā Sahasranāma 376, because, Brahman is beyond the concept of karma and hence not applicable to Her.
The second wall is protected by eight divine mothers known as aṣṭamātā-s. According to tantric texts, these aṣṭamātā-s originated from eight different gods and having thus originated from different gods, aṣṭamātā-s assist Parāśakti in Her war against demons (mythical war against sinners). Demons are persistent evil doers who are unwilling to mend their ways. Since Parāśakti is upholder of the universe, She has to ensure that there is a proper balance between good and bad in the world. If bad begins to predominate, She manifests and annihilate them. During wars against perpetual evildoers, these aṣṭamātā-s assist Her. Now let us have a look about their origin. Serial number is their numbers in Śri Cakra and numeric in parenthesis refers to the serial order of aṣṭamātā-s
11. (1) Brāhmī originated from Brahmā
12. (2) Māheśvari from Māheśvara
13. (3) Kaumārī from Kārttikeya, also known as Skanda. He is also known as Kaumāra. He is the son of Śiva and Pārvatī
14. (4) Vaiṣṇavī from Viṣṇu
15. (5) Vārāhī from Vārāha, one of the incarnations of Viṣṇu
16. (6) Māhendrī from Indra
17. (7) Cāmuṇḍā is said to have born from the body of Parāśakti Herself.
18. (8) Mahālakṣmī from Nārāyaṇa
It is also said that their consorts are aṣṭabhairava-s. There are different versions on this. Obviously, Mahālakṣmī is the Consort of Mahāviṣṇu. This is explained subsequently.
While the ten siddhidevi-s in the outer wall represent emotional status of mind, these aṣṭamātā-s represent skin, blood, muscle, fat, bone, bone marrow, procreative fluids and vitality. Their places of residence in a human body are ājñācakra, breasts, navel, heart, throat, face, nose and forehead. But, according Śivāgama, instead of Mahālakṣmīmātṛ, Caṇḍī is named. In that case, the Bhairava consort of Caṇḍī is Saṁhāra Bhairava.
Aṣṭamātā-s and their consorts aṣṭabhairava-s are given below:
(1) Brāhmī - Asitāṅgabhairava
(2) Māheśvari – Rurubhairava
(3) Kaumārī - Caṇḍabhairava
(4) Vaiṣṇavī – Krodhanabhairava
(5) Vārāhī – Unmattabhairava
(6) Māhendrī - kapālbhairava
(7) Cāmuṇḍā - Bhīṣaṇabhairava
(8) Caṇḍi - Saṁhārabhairava *
*Generally only saptamātā-s (seven in number) are referred. In certain Scriptures aṣṭamātā-s are also referred. In that case, either Mahālakṣmī or Caṇḍi is named as the eighth mother. If Mahālakṣmī is referred, then there is no corresponding Bhairava. In certain texts, Yamī is mentioned and correspondingly her consort is Yama (lord of death). There is no corresponding Bhairava for Yamī too.
The third wall is guarded ten mudraśakti-s. We have to leave the tenth mudra, sarvatrikhaṇḍā mudra, as this belongs to Parāśakti. The nine mudras represent nine types of powers and they are (19 to 27 in the same order) power of agitation, power of fighting, power of fascination, power of subjugation, power of insanity, power of motivation, power to connect to ariel beings or the power to move in void, referring to higher spiritual levels and the power to create. Trikhaṇḍa means dividing something into three parts and here it means the union of the knower, known and the path of knowing (sādhana). Beyond this, no further information is available about these mudraśakti-s.
Thus, if we look at the three walls of the first enclosure, we will find three planes corresponding to the three loka-s and they are attainments (ten siddhyaṁba-s relating to the mind), obstructions (aṣṭamātā-s causing attachment to physical body) and powers (power of fighting, etc as discussed in the previous paragraph) of normal human activates are represented or these three stages of normal human activity originated form Śri Cakra. The latter seems to be more appropriate, as the entire universe has originated only from the central triangle of Śri Cakra and the bindu within (representing Śakti and Śiva respectively). Hence the first enclosure is called trilokyamohanacakra and the three loka-s are attainments, obstructions and powers as discussed above.