Icchā śaktir umā kumārī इच्छाशक्तिरुमा कुमारी (sūtrā 13)

Shiva has five faces that represent five aspects of the divine. They are Īśāna, Tatpuruṣa, Sadyojāta, Vāmadeva and Aghora. In Īśāna, cit śaktī (consciousness) is predominant; in Tatpuruṣa, ānanda śaktī (bliss); in Sadyojāta, īcchā śaktī (will); in Vāmadeva, jñāna śaktī knowledge); and in Aghora, kriyā śaktī (activity) are predominant.

In this aphorism īcchā śaktī means the will power. Umā means brilliance and kumārī literally means a maiden. But the words used in this aphorism are to be understood beyond their gross meanings.

This aphorism is interpreted from the stand point of a yogi. Icchā is the will power of a yogi. A yogi always has inherent will power to attain Shiva. Shiva is the energy Absolute. Yogi gradually enters into the brilliant and unstained energy centre of Shiva. Umā here means the independent energy or authority of Shiva which is known as His svātantrya śaktī (the power of autonomy). Therefore, Umā should not be construed as His consort. Though in a way, His svātantrya śaktī refers to Śaktī (His consort), as She holds His power of attorney to use His svātantrya śaktī. The will of the yogi is called here as kumārī. Kumārī here refers to the energy that destroys differentiated perception arising out of māyā. The word kumārī is chosen, not without a proper reasoning. Just like a maiden, the yogi’s consciousness has to be pure to remain with Shiva.

The will power of the yogi (his īcchā śaktī ) has to be focused on Shiva alone (like Umā who did penance to attain Shiva, with single pointed focus), without any afflicted thoughts (like kumārī). The consciousness of the yogi at all times remains in turya state, as turya state also encompasses the three lower levels of consciousness. No man can exist without the three normal level of consciousness, awake, dream and deep sleep. A true yogi is different from an ordinary man as yogi always fixes his consciousness with Shiva (perpetual meditation) even during his normal human activities. The will power of the yogi could enter into the luminous and brilliant cosmic energy centre of the universe, known as Shiva with absolute one-pointedness and devoid of any distractions and impurities and ultimately becomes Shiva Himself (meaning the merger of empirical self with the Supreme Self). A nara (here, meaning a yogi) can reach Shiva only through his pure consciousness (Śaktī), which is the nut shell of Trika philosophy.

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