विभक्तत्रैवर्ण्यं व्यतिकरितलीलाञ्जनतया
विभाति त्वन्नेत्रत्रितयमिदमीशानदयिते।
पुनः स्रष्टुं देवान्  द्रुहिणहरिरुद्रानुपरतान्
रजः सत्वं बिभ्रत्तम इति गुणानां त्रयमिव॥

vibhaktatraivarṇyaṁ vyatikaritalīlāñjanatayā
vibhāti tvannetratritayamidamīśānadayite |
punaḥ sraṣṭuṁ devān  druhiṇaharirudrānuparatān
rajaḥ satvaṁ bibhrattama iti guṇānāṁ trayamiva ||

vibhakta traivarṇyaṁ - three different colours (the colours are red, white and black and this is described in the next verse); vyatikarita līlāñjanatayā – mixing  (applying is implied) beautiful collyrium; vibhāt – splendid; tva netra tritayam idam – these three eyes of Yours (as discussed in verse 50); īśāna dayite – O! Beloved Consort of Śiva; punaḥ - again; sraṣṭuṁ - the act of creation (sraṣṭṛ - a creator); devān – gods and goddesses; druhiṇa hari rudrān uparatān – Brahmā, Viṣṇu and Rudra after their disappearance; rajaḥ satvaṁ bibhrat tama iti guṇānāṁ trayam iva – carrying these three guṇa-s rajas, sattva and tamas.

“O! Beloved Consort of Śiva. Your three splendid eyes shine with three different colours, when well mixed collyrium is applied to Your eyes and these three colours appear like three guṇa-s rajas, sattva and tamas. This appears as if You have decided to re-create three Gods Brahmā, Viṣṇu and Rudra, after annihilation.”

These verses talk about the Grandeur of Parāśakti. We can fully understand Her only through these human-like descriptions.  Śaṁkarācārya using his highest knowledge gives us a broad idea to enable us to contemplate Her. In the previous verse, Her two eyes were discussed and in this verse, all the three eyes are described, but the description in this verse is totally different from verse 50.

In normal human eyes, there will be traces of redness in the white background (this white membrane is known as sclera). Blood vessels run through sclera and depending upon one’s mental status, these blood vessels get enlarged and become visible, causing red tinge. But Her eyes do not turn red because of anger. It turns red because of compassion. The colour of compassions is said to be red and She is described with red complexion as She is an embodiment of compassion.

The first dhyāna verse of Lalitā Sahasranāma is explained thus and this forms the base for this verse.

sindūrāruṇa-vigrahāṃ tri-nayanāṃ māṇikya mauli sphurat 

Sindūrāruṇa-vigrahāṃ - sindūram means the kumkum kept on women’s forehead, which is red in colour.  ārunam means the colour of sun rise, which is also red.  The complexion of Lalitā is red.  Why Her complexion is referred twice - one is the reference to the colour of the kumkum, and another reference is to the colour of sun at the time of its rise? Vāc Devi-s could have felt the need to emphasize the deep red colour of Her complexion and could have thought that one example was not enough and hence two examples could have been cited. vigrahāṃ means Her form.  trinayanāṃ means three eyed.  Third eye mentioned here is not in its literal sense.  It is the eye of jñāna.  If one acquires jñāna, his third eye will be opened on its own.  That is why Gods are described with three eyes.  These three eyes represent the sun, the moon and the agni (fire), possibly indicating ājñā cakra.

Now we have white colour and red colour. The back colour is Her eyes is caused by a special mixture of collyrium* applied to the corners of Her eyes. This collyrium is applied to Her manually as She has no traces of tamo guṇa, which is represented by black colour. Application of collyrium enhances the beauty of the eyes and if the collyrium is prepared at home according to Ayurveda, it is said to cool the eyes. These three colours, white, red and black represent three guṇa-s sattva, rajas and tamas respectively and represent creation, sustenance and destruction and are presided over by three Gods, Brahmā, Viṣṇu and Rudra. They are also annihilated during dissolution. This is described in Saundaryalaharī (verse 20) which says, “O! Faithful Consort of Śiva! At the time of great dissolution, Brahmā, Viṣṇu, Yama, Kubera, Indra and other gods cease to exist. But Your Consort Śiva alone enjoys with You even during the great dissolution.”  She wants to recreate the annihilated universe due to compassion and to take care of the orderly process of creation, sustenance and destruction, She recreates Brahmā, Viṣṇu and Rudra to recommence their respective jobs. As She creates them through Her eyes, this verse explains the origin of their recreation.

{*Further reading – how to make collyrium at home: Take an earthen lamp and will it with castor oil. A think wick should be made using well washed white cotton cloth. Take a copper plate and apply the past by powdering sweet-flag (acorus calamus) and mixing it with pure water. When the paste has dried on its own (should not be exposed to sun light), light the lamp and place the copper plate above the lighted lamp so that soot can form on the side where the paste is applied. After a few hours, there will be a formation of thick black soot in the form of powder. Take this powder with clean hands and mix it with clean castor oil. Collyrium is now ready for use.}

{Further reading on guṇa-s: She is in the form of three guṇa-s or qualities viz sattvic, rajas and tamas.  Sattva guṇa means the quality of purity and knowledge.  The presence of other two guṇa-s is not very prominent in sattva guṇa as this guṇa is endowed with the highest purity.  Rajo guṇa is the activity of passion. Tamo guṇa is inertia or ignorance.  These two guṇa-s have higher trace of other guṇa-s.  Guṇa-s are the inherent qualities of prakṛti.  Ego and intellect originate from guṇa-s that are present in all the evolutes of prakṛti at once, but distributed in unequal proportions in each individual.  The predominant guṇa that prevails in an individual is reflected through his thoughts and actions.}