151. Kaṭākṣasyandikaruṇā कटाक्षस्यन्दिकरुणा

She has eyes that express compassion, primarily due to Her Śrī Mātā status.  As far as Her devotees are concerned, She is their Divine Mother first, then only comes Her other attributes such as creation, etc.

Lalitā Sahasranāma 590 says Kaṭākṣa-kiṅkarī-bhūta-kamalā-koṭi-sevitā and this nāma has been explained as, “By Her mere glance She is attended by millions of Lakṣmī-s, the Goddess of wealth. If Lakṣmī glances at a person his richness grows. This nāma says that Lalitāmbikā is attended to by countless number of Lakṣmī-s, signifying Her incomprehensible nature of wealth and prosperity.” Lalitā Sahasranāma 62, Kāmākṣī also conveys the same meaning.

152. Kapāliprāṇanāyikā कपालिप्राणनायिका

Śiva is also known as Kapāli. Kapāla means skull and according to Tantric Scriptures, Śiva holds a skull in His hand and this skull is said to be the fifth head of Brahmā, which Śiva chopped off. When Śiva is adored as Kapāli, She is worshipped as Kapālin. This is said to be one of the forms of Durga.

When Śiva is Bhairava, She is Bhairavi; when He is Śiva, She is Śive; when He is Īśvara, She is Īśvari; when He is Śaktīśvarā (Lord of Śakti), She is Śivaśakti (Śakti of Śiva); when He is Prakāśa, She is Vimarśa.  They cannot be separated under any circumstances.

153. Kāruṇyavigrahā कारुण्यविग्रहा

Kāruṇya means compassion and vigraha means a body or a form. She is en embodiment of compassion.

Lalitā Sahasranāma 326 says, Karuṇārasa-sāgarā, meaning ocean of compassion. This nāma has been explained thus: She is the ocean of compassion.  Karuṇa means compassion, rasa means essence and sāgara means ocean. Compassion is Her natural quality, because She is the universal mother.

Lalitā Triśatī nāma 9 is ‘karuṇāmrta sāgarā’, which conveys the same meaning. Śaṇkarā, the great saint has given the following interpretation:  “Ocean, without making a move is the cause for rain and the entire universe sustains on this water.  A drop of water gets itself detached from the clouds and enters a different plane (leaving ākāś and reaching earth) merely to sustain this universe.  The water itself does not get any benefit out of its own action.  Such is Her compassion.”  This compassion is called the Supreme because, She does not differentiate.  As far as She is concerned, all are equal before Her, yet another reasoning for addressing Her as the universal Mother. 

She is compassionate to all types of devotees. There are different types of devotees, who perform daily worship, those who recite sacred hymns like Lalitā Sahasranāma, those who meditate on Her, those who worship Her through kula rituals (Kulārṇava Tantra), who performs japa-s and above all a yogi, whose individual consciousness stands connected with Her perpetually.  Beyond all these types of devotees is sthitaprajña who gets transformed into a jīvanmukta and finally gets liberated by merging with Śiva. She is compassionate to all of them. Without Her Grace, spiritual progression is not possible and without Śiva’s Grace, merger unto Him is not possible.

154. Kāntā कान्ता

She has a pleasing, attractive and loveable personality. Because of Her beauty, even Śiva is attracted to Her, says Saundaryalaharī (verse 45). When the quality of compassion is predominant, it makes a person adorable and loveable. It is not the beauty alone that attracts, but also Her compassion.

Lalitā Sahasranāma 861 is Kāntārdha-vigrahā and is explained thus: She has half the body of Her husband Śiva.  Kāntā means Śiva. This form is known as Ardhanārīśvara form, half-male and half-female.  This form was very popular in ancient sculptures. This form means the creation.  Male form is known as puruṣa and the female form is known as prakṛti.  Creation is caused by the union of puruṣa and prakṛti

Liṅga Purāṇa (I.iv.28) says “At the beginning of creation, Brahma had created a Being (Rudra) possessed of a body half man’s and half woman’s and then the Creator said “Divide thyself”. And He being accosted thus divided Himself into two.  It was then that She was born.”

Saundarya Laharī (verse 23) also refers to this form.  The verse says that after having obtained the left half of Śiva’s body, She still remains unsatisfied. She is so fond of Śiva.

155. Kāntidhūtajapāvaliḥ कान्तिधूतजपावलिः

Her personality, as described in the previous nāma puts into shame, a garden of (red) hibiscus flowers (plants appear in rows in the garden).

Her red complexion is described in all the dhyāna verses of Lalitā Sahasranāma. Red colour means compassion. Every quality is represented by a colour and various colours originate from the six psychic centres and sahasrāra (VIBGYOR). Purity is represented by white colour, ignorance is represented by black colour, love is expressed by green colour, etc. This also goes to prove that all types of qualities originate from Her.

The last dhyāna verse of Lalitā Sahasranāma says, “japā-kusuma-bhāsurāṃ japavidhau smaredaṃbikām” which means that She has the complexion like a hibiscus flower.  One has to meditate on this form of Lalitāmbikā during japa time.

During japa, one should meditate on Her. When the meditation becomes intent, japa recitation automatically stops and this is the perfect stage in meditation. When the individual consciousness becomes one with Supreme Consciousness, this stage arises on its own.

156. Kalālāpā कलालापा

Lāpa means speech. Kalā can be explained as a part of something; for example, digits of moon. It is like many atoms forming a particular object.

Lalitā Sahasranāma 328 is also Kalālāpā and its interpretation is reproduced here. “Her speech itself is an art.  Kalā generally means sixty four types of fine arts.  But, kala refers melodious voice. Ālāpa also means speech. This nāma refers to Her melodious voice as art or Kalā.

Saundarya Laharī (verse 38) mentions eighteen types of arts “as a result of whose conversation, the maturation of the eighteen arts takes place”.  These eighteen arts are interpreted in different ways.  The first one says that the sixteen bīja-s of Ṣodaśī mahā mantra, Devi and one’s Guru make the eighteen.    This is called aṣṭādaśaguṇitavidyā अष्टादशगुणितविद्या. Another interpretation refers to eighteen types of vidyā-s - śikṣā, kalpa, vyākaraṇa, nirukta, jyotiṣa, candas, Rig Veda, Yajur Veda, Sāma Veda, Atharva Veda, pūva and uttara mīmāṁsā, nyāya, purāṇa, dharma śāstra, Āyurveda, dhaṇurveda, gāndharva and nīti śāstra.  This means, that from the melodious speech of Devi, the eighteen vidya-s originate and by attaining these vidya-s a person is able to distinguish between good and bad through the means of his mind.” 

157. Kambukaṇṭhī  कम्बुकण्ठी

Kambu means conch and She has a neck appearing like a conch and kaṇṭha means throat.

This nāma says that She has a throat appearing like a conch. Anything that has a shape of conch is known as concha and hence She is Concha.

Sage Durvāsas in his Śrī Śakti mahimnaḥ (verse 37) also describes Her neck in the same manner. He says, “ahaṁ kaṇṭhaṁ ca kambuśriyam kalayāmi अहं कण्ठं च कम्बुश्रियम् कलयामि”. This means ‘I meditate on Your conch like neck’.

{According to Sāmudrikālakṣaṇa, a treatise on body parts, the one who has a neck resembling a conch is highly revered and will be deeply interested in spirituality. Similarly, if the lines in the neck face upwards, he or she will have inclination towards charity. If the lines face downwards, like a garland, he will be rich and will be blessed by Self-realized persons (sages and saints).}

158. Karanirjitapallavā करनिर्जितपल्लवा

Kara – hand; nirjita – conquered; pallava – twig, young shoot or sensuality.

Her hands are compared to young shoots for their softness and beauty. It can also be explained that those who are addicted to sensual pleasures will be de-addicted if they meditate on Her palm. Ironically, She holds sugarcane bow and flower arrows, representing Manmatha, which goes to prove Her omnipresence. Brahman not only presides over good but also bad; otherwise, omnipresence of Brahman becomes questionable. By holding sugarcane bow and flower arrows, She induces sensuality; if one contemplates on Her palm (She does not have varada and abhaya mudras), all their unwanted thoughts would be eradicated.

159. Kalpavallīsamabhujā कल्पवल्लीसमभुजा

Kalpavallī is a divine creeper that is capable of fulfilling all desires. It is also known as Kalpalatā. Thisnāma says that both of Her arms (bhuja) are capable of fulfilling all the desires of Her devotees.

Possibly this is the only nāma that describes Her arms. There are no references either in Lalitā Sahasranāma or in Saundaryalaharī. However, Śaṁkarācārya in his another composition by name Ānandalaharī* (verse 6) describes Her arms as “sulalitakaraiḥ pallavayutā सुललितकरैः पल्लवयुता”, which means that Her arms are soft like a tender creeper

*This Ānandalaharī, which has twenty verses, is different from the first forty one verses of Saundaryalaharī, which is also known as Ānandalaharī.

160. Kastūritilakāñcitā कस्तूरितिलकाञ्चिता

She is wearing a tilaka (a mark on the forehead) made out of musk.

There is a verse saying that Lord Kṛṣṇa has kastūri tilakā on His forehead. The verse says, “kastūritilakaṁ lalāṭa palake”.