Daśamudrā-samārādhyā दशमुद्रा-समाराध्या (977)

She is worshipped through ten types of finger gestures known as mudra-s.  Samārādhana means worship.

Mudra-s are the configuration of fingers that represent the energy of the deity concerned. They are the secret signs of exchange between the practitioner and the deity and should never be used in public.  Mudra-s are highly powerful.  It is said that if one meditates on the radiance of the sun and of the moon and chants mantra-s, he is empowered by the triple mystery, then the rays of the universal will shine forth and all obstacles of ignorance will instantly dissolve in the ocean of mind.

 Āgama śāstra can be broadly classified under three paths, vāma marga, tantra marga and kaula marga.  They advocate three types of sacrifices, rites, worship and knowledge.  There is another way of worship known as pañcaṅga, which consists of nyāsa (attribution of mantra-s in different parts of the body with fingers in order to sanctify the body), mudra, japa, pūja and worship of other gods and goddesses (such as Varuṇa for sanctifying the vessels, etc used in the rites). Mudra-s are also used to accomplish the mystical powers of various bīja-s.  Mudra-s represent the union of Śiva and Śaktī (left hand is Śaktī and right hand is Śiva) and the potential auspicious energy arising out of their union. 

Daśamudra-s or ten mudra-s are used in Śrī vidyā, the worship of the Divine Mother.  Śrī Cakra has nine coverings or āvaraṇa-s and each of them is ruled by a Śaktī.  Each of these Śaktī-s has a mudra and this accounts for nine mudra-s.  In the ninth āvaraṇa Lalitāmbikā is worshipped with yoni mudra. Apart from worshipping the presiding deities of each āvaraṇa-s with the respective mudra-s, Lalitāmbikā is also worshipped with yoni mudra in all the āvaraṇa-s.  Those who are initiated into ṣodaśī mantra worship Her with sarva trikhaṇḍā mudra (nāma 983).  Trikhaṇḍā mudra means the union of various triads into single entity.  For example, practitioner, his Guru and Devi or the knower, the known and the path of knowing, etc. This fact is highlighted in nāma 254.  Trikhaṇḍā mudra is used to invoke the Goddess during rituals. 

At the time of offering these mudra-s, the respective mantra-s along with the respective bīja-s should also be recited mentally. 

Tripurā-śrivaśaṃkarī  त्रिपुरा-श्रिवशंकरी (978)

Tripurāśrī is the name of the presiding deity of the fifth āvaraṇa of Śrī Cakra.  This āvaraṇa is known as the accomplisher of all objects (sarvārtha-sādhakā).  This āvaraṇa further strengthens the bondage between the guru and his disciple.  While worshipping this cakra, the names and forms of various objects merge into Ātma (soul), an important stage in the path of Self-realisation.  Ten śaktī-s are worshipped in the āvaraṇa-s indicating the ten incarnations of Lord Viṣṇu, who is the authority for sustaining the universe in the best possible auspicious way. 

Śrī Cakra has nine āvaraṇa-s and each āvaraṇa is presided by a deity.  All their names have been mentioned in this Sahasranāma as various nāma-s, either directly or indirectly.  In the ascending order they are nāma-s 626, 787, 997, 970, 978, 455, 471, 976 and 234.

This nāma means that Tripurāśrī is a part of Lalitāmbikā.  Alternatively, it can also be said that Vāc Devi-s pay obeisance to Tripurāśrī, the deity known for supreme knowledge before revealing Lalitāmbikā in the last nāma.  The unique feature of this Sahasranāma is that it makes the devotee exited when he progresses towards the last nāma, where Lalitāmbikā is fully revealed. The revelation comes about only when one understands the meaning of each nāma.

Jñānamudrā ज्ञानमुद्रा (979)

This is also known as cin mudra.  This mudra is made by connecting the tip of the index finger with the tip of the thumb, by keeping other fingers stretched.  This gesture indicates the union of jīvātma with Paramātma (union of soul with the Brahman).  This mudra is called jñānamudra, as knowledge means the realisation of oneness of jīvātma and paramātma.  Lord Dakṣiṇāmūrti (incarnation of Śiva. Also refer nāma 725) used cin mudra to initiate His young disciples Sanaka (refer nāma 726) and others (the psychical sons of Brahma). 

This nāma calls Her as jñānamudra as She is the symbol of knowledge.  It can also be said that She is the passport (mudra also means passport) to knowledge (jñāna).  Mud means bliss and ra means gives and in this context, the nāma means that through knowledge She offers bliss to Her devotees. 

Jñāna-gamyā ज्ञान-गम्या (980)

Gamya means approachable.  She is approachable only through knowledge or She is perceived only through knowledge. 

She can be attained through three means, either through bhāvana or meditation (nāma 113), second through bhakti or devotion (nāma 119) or though jñāna or knowledge (the present nāma). Ultimately, meditation and devotion merge into knowledge where Self-realisation takes place. 

Following quotes of Kṛṣṇa confirm the above interpretation.

“Sacrifice through knowledge is superior to sacrifice performed with material offerings.  For all actions without exception culminate in knowledge” (Bhagavad Gīta IV.33).

“On those ever united through devotion, with me and worship me with love, I confer that yoga of wisdom through which they come to me.  In order to shower my grace on them I dwell in their heart and dispel the darkness born out of ignorance by shining the light of wisdom” (Bhagavad Gīta X.10, 11).

{Further reading: What is wisdom? Is it all knowingness? Patañjali in his yoga sūtra (I.25) says “In Him becomes infinite that all-knowingness which in others is only a germ”.  Let us assume that someone steals money from somebody, thinking that his action of theft is not known to anybody. But it will be known to a Self-realised person, because his knowledge is not individualised but connected to cosmos. The sum total of individual knowledge is known as universal knowledge.  All-knowingness is the very element of consciousness; where there is consciousness, there exists knowing.  If consciousness is pervasive, then it is all-knowing.  Knowledge is nothing but manifestation of consciousness through an appropriate mental mode.

Vivekacūḍāmaṇi (408 - 410) says “The wise one realises in his heart the infinite Brahman, which is an ineffable something, of the nature of eternal knowledge and absolute bliss, who has no exemplar, which transcends all limitations,  is ever free and without activity, which is like the limitless sky, indivisible and absolute.  The wise one realises in his heart in Samādi, the infinite Brahman, which is devoid of the touch of  cause and effect, which is the Reality beyond all imagination, which is homogeneous, matchless, beyond the reach of logical proofs, but proved by the experience of the wise and ever familiar to man as the basis of his Self-awareness.   The wise one realises in his heart, in Samādi, the infinite Brahman, which is imperishable and immortal, the Reality which is the negation of all negations, which resembles the ocean when the waves have subsided, which is without a name, in which have subsided all the modification of the guṇa-s and which is eternal, pacified and ONE.”}

Jñāna-jñeya-svarūpiṇī ज्ञान -ज्ञेय-स्वरूपिणी (981)

The importance of knowledge is being repeatedly stressed by Vāc Devi-s towards the end of this Sahasranāma.  This nāma says She is the knowledge and the knowing.  The previous nāma said that She can be approached only through knowledge.  Nāma 979 said that She is the symbol of knowledge.

Kṛṣṇa explains this in Bhagavad Gīta (XIII.17) “The Supreme Brahman is said to be the light of all lights, and entirely beyond māyā and is knowledge itself, worth attaining through real wisdom and is particularly seated in the heart of all.”

Jñāna means knowledge, the essential nature of the Brahman. Jñeya is a qualifying word here, with intent to reveal that the primary duty of a man is to know Her.  It means ‘to be learnt or understood or ascertained or investigated or perceived or inquired about’.  She can be known only through knowledge as said in nāma 980. 

Śvetāśvatara Upaniṣad (I.12) says, “You have to know that Brahman is always residing within.  There is nothing higher than this knowledge. The jīva (the enjoyer), the jagat (that which the enjoyer enjoys) and the Brahman within, who directs – know these three as the Brahman.”