22. 1) Invoking Her in Śri Cakra:

Technically, navāvaraṇa pūjā begins from here. In the previous part, antaryāga, She was contemplated in different psychic chakras and taken to the top of sahasrāra. When we speak about sahasrāra, it is obvious that we are referring to Śiva-Śakti union. How they are to be invoked? They are to be contemplated as Kāmeśvara and Kāmeśvarī. In this form, She is seated majestically and proudly on His left thigh. Kāmeśvara is Prakāśa and Kāmeśvarī is Vimarśa. Kāmeśvara is in the bindu and Kāmeśvarī is the innermost triangle. This innermost triangle and the bindu have manifested as Śivaliṅga, which is the cause of the universe.

Now, we have to take flowers using trikhaṇḍā mudra, move the kuṇḍalinī from mūlādhāra to sahasrāra using our breath and consciousness. First inhale and by holding breath within, move kuṇḍalinī to sahasrāra. Now exhale and at the time of exhalation, hold fingers of trikhaṇḍā mudra with flowers below the nostrils and visualize Kāmeśvara and Kāmeśvarī in the form of subtle prāṇa in the flowers and place the flowers in the middle of Śri Cakra. If three different colour flowers are available, they can be kept in three joints of trikhaṇḍā mudra. This means that we are transferring the visualized image of the Divine Couple through our prāṇa (exhalation) to be consecrated in the middle of Śri Cakra. Without proper contemplation within, as discussed in antaryāga (previous part), consecration in Śri Cakra will be futile. The flowers are to be placed in Śri Cakra very carefully and very gently using the following mantra. Under no circumstances, flowers should be thrown on Śri Cakra. They are to placed with great reverence.

4 ह्रीं श्रीं सौः श्रीललितायाः अमृतचैतन्य मूर्तिं कल्पयामि नमः॥

4 hrīṁ śrīṁ sauḥ śrīlalitāyāḥ amṛtacaitanya mūrtiṁ kalpayāmi namaḥ ||

[amṛtacaitanya means imperishable knowledge or supreme knowledge. This means that They are being invoked in the form of Supreme knowledge.]

22.2) Dhyāna verse:

इक्षुकोदण्डपुष्पेषु पासाङ्कुश चतुर्भुजाम्।

सर्वदेवमयीं अंबां सर्व सौभाग्य सुन्दरीम्॥

सर्वदीर्थमयीं दिव्यां सर्वकामप्रपूरिणीम्।

सर्वमन्त्रमयीं नित्यां सर्वागम विशारदाम्॥

सर्वक्षेत्रमयीं देवीं सर्वविद्यामयीं शिवाम्।

सर्वयागमयीं विद्यां सर्वदेव स्वरूपिणीम्॥

सर्वशास्त्रमयीं नित्यां सर्वागम नमस्कृताम्।

सर्वाम्नायमयीं देवीं सर्वायतन सेविताम्॥

सर्वानन्दमयीं ज्ञानगह्वरां संविदं पराम्।

एवं ध्यायेत् परामंबां सच्चिदानन्द रूपिणीम्॥

ikṣukodaṇḍapuṣpeṣu pāsāṅkuśa caturbhujām |

sarvadevamayīṁ aṁbāṁ sarva saubhāgya sundarīm ||

sarvadīrthamayīṁ divyāṁ sarvakāmaprapūriṇīm |

sarvamantramayīṁ nityāṁ sarvāgama viśāradām ||

sarvakṣetramayīṁ devīṁ sarvavidyāmayīṁ śivām |

sarvayāgamayīṁ vidyāṁ sarvadeva svarūpiṇīm ||

sarvaśāstramayīṁ nityāṁ sarvāgama namaskṛtām |

sarvāmnāyamayīṁ devīṁ sarvāyatana sevitām ||

sarvānandamayīṁ jñānagahvarāṁ saṁvidaṁ parām |

evaṁ dhyāyet parāmaṁbāṁ saccidānanda rūpiṇīm ||


She is to be contemplated with a sugarcane bow, flower arrows, noose and goad in Her four hands. She encompasses all gods and goddesses. She is an embodiment of all auspiciousness, sacred rivers, fulfilling all desires, all types of mantras, sacred and traditional doctrines, holy places (kṣetra technically means geometrical dimensions with astronomical and astrological implications and holy places; kṣetra also means body), grammatical treatises in the form of mantras that are communicated through initiations orally, all holy places and temples, blissfulness and knowledge.

Further reading on dhyāna verse:

The above verse says that She is the universe itself or She manifests as the universe. Parāśakti is the Supreme Power of Śiva, known as Svātantrya Śakti or independent and absolute power of Śiva, which He alone possesses. Śiva is in the form of illumination, hence He is known as Prakāśa. Light without objects around is of no use. If we light a candle in a desert, there is no use for this candle, as there are no objects around to reflect the light of the candle. If Śiva alone is present, the manifestation of the universe will not be visible. Hence Parāśakti manifests as the universe and is in total control of the universe and none of the activities of the universe can happen without Her will, grace and knowledge. Hence, Lalitā Sahasranāma (658) adores Her as Icchāśakti-jñānaśakti-kriyāśakti-svarūpiṇī  (इच्छाशक्ति-ज्ञानशक्ति-क्रियाशक्ति-स्वरूपिणी), which is interpreted as follows: “She is in the form of three energies – the energy of will, the energy of wisdom and the energy of action.  These energies form a part of trīśikā.  Trīśikā (tri + iśikā) means analysis of three.  Tri means three and iśikā means Īśvarī, the power, abiding in divine consciousness.  She is the controller of all triads in the process of creation.  For example, the three acts of the Brahman, creation, sustenance and dissolution.  Though She is said to be Īśvarī of creation, etc, She is not different from Śiva.  The supreme divine consciousness on the point of expansion according to Her inherent nature is Icchā śakthi.  The actual process of expansion is jñāna śakti and the process of diversity leading to creation of the universe is kriyā śakti.  The One who is the possessor of all three śakti-s or energies is known as parā-śakti or the Supreme energy.  Śrī Tantrālokaḥ (III.111) says “When the power of action reflects upon soma (the essence of ecstasy), sūrya (the sun) and agni (the fire) and we attain the indivisible Light that is our absolute bindu.” When kriyā Śaktī is accomplished in the phases represented by icchā śaktī and jñāna śaktī, in the inner manifestation, the Supreme Reality of Śiva is realized.”

Vimarśa is also non-dualistic in nature like Prakāśa. In other words, She is also non-dualistic like Śiva. But there are two perspectives of Vimarśa, both being non-dualistic. Both are at the metaphysical levels; first one (metaphysical to physical) is about Self-illuminating Śiva uniting with Vimarśa to make the world process unfold. This is about the dynamics of power of Śiva uniting with the recognition of power of light, Śakti. Therefore, without Śiva-Śakti union, universe cannot manifest and worldly process cannot be initiated. The second one is the reverse process, known as spiritual path or path to liberation (from physical to metaphysical). Liberation can only be offered by Śiva, but She has to put Her stamp of approval for liberation. This is explained in Lalitā Sahasranāma (727) Śiva-jñāna-pradāyinī, which is explained thus: “She imparts the knowledge of Śiva, the Ultimate.  Śiva jñāna (knowledge) means the knowledge of the Brahman, which is also known as the Supreme knowledge.  To know Śiva, one should first know His Śaktī, who alone is capable of leading a person to the Brahman or Śiva.  Rāmāyaṇa says ‘wind can be realized through movements, fire can be realised through heat and Śiva can be realized only through Śaktī.’ It can also be said that Śiva is the source of knowledge for Her.  It is said śaṁkaraṁ caitanyam which means that Śiva is both jñāna and kriyā.  He is the sovereign, pure free will, in knowledge and action.  Based upon this principle, Śiva Sūtra-s opens by saying caitanyamātmā.  Caitanyam means consciousness of the highest purity and knowledge.  There is no difference between Brahman and the highest form of consciousness.  But how Śaktī alone is capable of unravelling Śiva?  This is answered by Śiva Sūtra (I.6) again which says that by meditating on Śaktī, the universe disappears as a separate entity thereby unveiling Self illuminating Śiva.  The process of such happening is described in Spanda Kārikā (I.8) (another treatise of Kashmiri Saivism) which says ‘the empirical individual cannot ward off the urge of desires.  But entering the energetic circle of the Self (Śiva), he becomes equal to that Self.’ The seeker of Śiva becomes Śiva himself.  This is known as Śiva jñāna and She imparts this kind of Supreme knowledge. It is also said that Śiva cannot be attained without first realising Śaktī. She alone can lead one to Śiva. Śiva is inaccessible directly. Unless She chooses to impart the required Supreme knowledge, none can realise Śiva. Hence, She is called Śiva-jñāna-pradāyinī.”

What is the transformation that happens within after She imparts knowledge about Śiva? :New experience unfolds when devotion transforms into love. This is full of love, full of bliss, intensity of love rises here in kuṇḍalinī, which is the embodiment of love. Only in kuṇḍalinī true love exists. It is Her touch within, which leads to tears of joy, will make us stammer, which makes our voice break and ultimately blossoms out with laughter.” This stage is known as inner absorption, known as antaḥ samāveśa (samāveśa means absorption). When inner absorption is complete, which means ascension of kuṇḍalinī is complete, universe is transcended and the meditator becomes one with the highest form of Śiva, Paramaśiva, where She is inherent. Kulārṇava Tantra says, “A billion pūjā-s equal a stotra (hymns in praise); a billion stotra-s equal a japa; a billion japa-s equal a dhyāna and a billion dhyāna equal a laya (absorption).”

Only this understanding and contemplation leads to realization. Realisation happens only when one surrenders to Her through mind, intellect, consciousness and ego (antaḥkaraṇa). During navāvaraṇa pūjā, what is important is one’s ability to contemplate Her within and bring Her out from within and make Her majestically seated on Śiva’s left lap in the middle of Śri Cakra. Any extraneous thoughts during contemplation, are serious distractions for antaḥ samāveśa. We should establish a strong connection between the Divine Couple and our consciousness. Here, our consciousness means the dissolution of mind, intellect and ego into consciousness where pure consciousness alone prevails. It is like offering as oblations our mind, intellect and ego into the fire of consciousness.

22.3) Āvāhana mantra-s:

Āvāhana means invitation or invocation. By using certain mantras and mudras, the Divine Couple are invited from within to be seated in the midst of Śri Cakra along with Her retinue. Following is the mantra.

4 ह्स्रैं ह्स्क्ल्रीम् ह्स्रौः। महापद्मवनान्दस्ते कारणानन्द विग्रहे। सर्वभूतहिते मातः एह्येहि परमेश्वरि॥ श्रीललितामहात्रिपुर्सुन्दरी पराभट्टारिका महाकामेशर समेत आवाह्यामि॥

4 hsraiṁ hsklrīm hsrauḥ | mahāpadmavanāndaste kāraṇānanda vigrahe | sarvabhūtahite mātaḥ ehyehi parameśvari || śrīlalitāmahātripursundarī parābhaṭṭārikā mahākāmeśara sameta āvāhyāmi ||

Now place the flowers now being held in trikhaṇḍā in the centre of Śri Cakra. Now the Divine Couple are seated in Śri Cakra. If they are contemplated well within and properly invited to be seated in the midst of Śri Cakra, at the time of taking Their seat, subtle resonances can be felt in the maṇḍala where Śri Cakra is kept.

In order to pay our respects first, we are now showing some mudras to them and these mudras are known as āvāhana mudras. These mudras are used to stabilise our invocation. For each of the following mantras, there are mudras. 4 is to be added before each of these mantras.

4 आवाहिता भव। 4 संस्थापिता भव। 4 सन्निरुधापिता भव। 4 सन्निरुद्धा भव। 4 सम्मुखी भव। 4 अवकुण्ठिता भव। 4 सुप्रीता भव॥

4 āvāhitā bhava | 4 saṁsthāpitā bhava | 4 sannirudhāpitā bhava | 4 sanniruddhā bhava | 4 sammukhī bhava | 4 avakuṇṭhitā bhava | 4 suprītā bhava ||

Having thus established Them, now we have to do 64 types of upacāra-s to Them. Upacāra can be explained as attendance with reverence. Sixty four types of upacāra-s is known as chatuḥ-ṣaṣṭyupacāra. This is referred in Lalitā Sahasranāma (235) as “chatuḥ-ṣaṣṭyupacārāḍhyā”. Sixty four upacāra-s is a long and time consuming procedure. If time is a constraint, then these sixty four upacāra-s are curtailed to either five or sixteen. Five types of upacāra-s are known as pañca- upacāra-s and sixteen types of upacāra-s are known as ṣoḍaśa- upacāra-s.

22.4) Chatuḥ-ṣaṣṭyupacāra

Following is chatuḥ-ṣaṣṭyupacāra (64 upacāra-s). om aiṁ hrīṁ śrīṁ (ॐ ऐं ह्रीं श्रीं) (4) are to be prefixed to each upacāra. These upacāra-s are meant only for Lalitāmbikā. Śiva will continue to remain seated in the bindu of Śri Cakra. It is to be remembered that Śiva is devoid of any attributes and He is known as Nirguṇa Brahman and Lalitāmbikā is Saguṇa Brahman, who is the kinetic force of the universe. Śiva is Supreme and He alone shines by Himself; hence He is known as Prakāśa. He is beyond all these rituals and hence He is known as niśkriyā, which means inactive.

Example: The portion marked as ------ each of the upacāra-s mentioned below is to be filled.

om aiṁ hrīṁ śrīṁ  śrī lalitāyai -------- kalpayāmi namaḥ |

ॐ ऐं ह्रीं श्रीं श्रीललितायै -------- कल्पयामि नमः।

(kalpayāmi - an expressive style that uses events to describe some action; an extended metaphor. Kalpita means inferred or assumed. Basically, these 64 upacāra-s are to be contemplated. Kalpita also means arranged. Kalpayāmi is different from samarpayāmi; samarpayāmi means offering in person, whereas kalpayāmi is conceptualisation or visualization. It is stated that in the absence of any of the 64 offerings not available, a drop from sāmānya arghya can be offered in Her left hand with flowers. It would be better to contemplate those offerings that are not easily available. The very purpose of using kalpayāmi indicates that most of these offerings can be offered to Her mentally.)

Please note: While reading this article, every upacāra is to be contemplated. Please spend some time during each upacāra.

For example 1 is be recited like this.

1. ॐ ऐं ह्रीं श्रीं श्री श्रीललितायै पाद्यं कल्पयमि नमः।

om aiṁ hrīṁ śrīṁ  śrī lalitāyai pādyaṁ kalpayami namaḥ |

(offering water for washing hands and feet; in 64 upacāra-s ācamana is also included here)

2. आभरणावरोपणं ābharaṇāvaropaṇaṁ (removing Her jewels)

3. सुगन्धितैल अभ्यङ्गं sugandhitaila abhyaṅgaṁ (applying aroma oil on Her)

4. मञ्जनशालाप्रवेशनं mañjanaśālāpraveśanaṁ (entering into the place where She is going to be bathed)

5. मञ्जनशाल मणिपीठोपवेशनं mañjanaśāla maṇipīṭhopaveśanaṁ (taking Her seat on gem studded pedestal and gets ready for bath)

6. दिव्यासनानीयोद्वयर्तनं divyāsanānīyodvayartanaṁ (applying fragrant powders)

7. उष्णोदकस्नानं uṣṇodakasnānaṁ (bathing with hot water)

(Mantramātṛkāpuṣpamālāstavaḥ (verse 4):  After visualizing Her place, Her throne and after having washer Her feet and offered Her water, the aspirant now gives Her a bath.)

8. कनककलशच्युत सकल तीर्ताभिषकं kanakakalaśacyuta sakala tīrtābhiṣakaṁ (bathing Her with water brought from various sacred rivers in gold pots)

9. धौतवस्त्रपरिमार्जनं dhautavastraparimārjanaṁ (predry with towels)

10. अरुणदुकूलपरिधानं aruṇadukūlaparidhānaṁ (adoring Her with crimson garment)

(Mantramātṛkāpuṣpamālāstavaḥ (verse 5) I have gathered bright precious stones from the golden Mount Meru and fixed them on the red upper garment which is in the colour of saffron.)

11. अरुणदुकूलपरिधानं aruṇadukūlaparidhānaṁ (adoring Her with crimson upper garment)

12. आलेपमण्टपप्रवेशनं ālepamaṇṭapapraveśanaṁ (entering into a room for application of perfumes)

(Mantramātṛkāpuṣpamālāstavaḥ (verse 7) “I have prepared sandal paste mixed with camphor and saffron to apply on Your body. I have musk tialka to be placed on Your forehead. I have gorocanā for Your mirror like cheeks. I have eyeliner for Your eyes and I have thick paste of pure musk for your lotus like neck. I offer all this for Your delight.”)

13. आलेपमण्टप मणिपीठोपवेशनं ālepamaṇṭapa maṇipīṭhopaveśanaṁ (making Her to sit on a gem studded pedestal)

14. चन्दनागरु कुङ्कुम मृगमत कर्पूर कस्तूरी गोरोचनादि दिव्यगन्धसर्वाङ्गिणविलेपनं

candanāgaru kuṅkuma mṛgamata karpūra kastūrī gorocanādi divyagandhasarvāṅgiṇavilepanaṁ (application of paste made of sandal, saffron and other five fragrant ingredients; these ingredients are freshly grinded and made in the form of paste)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma 434 Candana-drava-digdhāṅgī - Her body is smeared with sandal paste.)

15. केशभारस्य कालागरुधूपं keśabhārasya kālāgarudhūpaṁ (offering aromatic smoke to Her hair)

(Mantramātṛkāpuṣpamālāstavaḥ (verse 9) Your hair appearing like a chain of bees, bewitch the mind of Śiva. Though Your body is the playground for fragrances, I mentally offer to Your body and hair, the fumes of ten different types of incenses.)

16. मल्लिका मालती जाती चम्पक अशोक शतपत्र पूग गुहळी पुन्नाग कह्लार मुख्य सर्वर्तुकुसुम मालाः

mallikā mālatī jātī campaka aśoka śatapatra pūga guhaḻī punnāga kahlāra mukhya sarvartukusuma mālāḥ

Ten different flowers are mentioned here. Garlands are made out of these flowers and adorned on Her. These flowers also adorn Her hair.

(Mantramātṛkāpuṣpamālāstavaḥ (verse 8): “There are several flowers mentioned here and many of them cannot be properly translated into English. The flowers are white water lily, blossomed blue lotus, jasmine, fragrant herbs,  another flower of jasmine family, yellow colored campaka flower, another flower of jasmine family that blossoms in the evening, flowers of coral tree, fragrant oleander, leaves of another herb, golden lotus and other fragrant flowers.”)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (13) Campakāśoka-punnāga-saugandhika-lasat-kacā. “Campaka, aśoka, punnāga, saugandhika are the four types of fragrant flowers that adorn Her hair.  But Her hair does not get fragrance because of these flowers, whereas these flowers get their fragrance from Her hair.  Her hair is always sweet smelling.”)  

17. भूषणमण्टप प्रवेशनं bhūṣaṇamaṇṭapa praveśanaṁ (She now enters into a hall where She is going to be adorned with various types of ornaments.)

18. भूषणमण्टप मणिपीठोपवेशनं bhūṣaṇamaṇṭapa maṇipīṭhopaveśanaṁ (She is made to sit on a gem studded pedestal where is She is adorned with all types of ornaments. These ornaments are adorned on Her one after another as described in subsequent upacāra-s.)

(Mantramātṛkāpuṣpamālāstavaḥ (verse 6): Please accept necklaces, bracelets, bracelets with tiny bells, anklets, ear studs, crown, head ornament, nose stud, finger rings, bangles and waist band.)

19. नवमणिमकुटं navamaṇimakuṭaṁ (crown made of nine precious gems)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (14) Kuruvinda-maṇiśreṇī-kanat-koṭīra-maṇḍitā: Kuruvinda is a rare type of ruby, which is red in colour.  This particular type of ruby is said to enhance love, wealth and devotion for Viṣṇu (Viṣṇu is Her brother).  These rubies adorn Her crown.  When She is meditated upon with this red crown, spirituality and prosperity will increase. Saundarya Laharī (verse 42) says, “Why will not he, who extols your golden crown, closely stud with the twelve Suns (twelve āditya-s - dvādasa āditya-s, each āditya representing one solar month ) transformed into gems, form the idea that the digit of the (crescent) Moon, variegated by enveloping lustre of the inlaid gems, is but the bow of Indra (rainbow)?”   Śrī Śaktī Mahimnaḥ (verse 42) also describes Her crown.)

20. चन्द्रश्कलं candraśkalaṁ (an ornament appearing like crescent moon)

21. सीमन्तसिन्दूरं sīmantasindūraṁ (vermilion kept at the parting of hair at forehead).

22. तिलकरत्नं tilakaratnaṁ (mark on the forehead just above the meeting points of eyebrows.

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (16) Mukacandra-kalaṇkābha-mṛganābhi-viśeṣakā - She is wearing a kastūri (kastūrikā a fragrant paste) tilaka (a mark on the forehead made with musk, sandal-wood, etc) and Lalitā Sahasranāma (632) Sindūra-tilakāñcitā - She is adorned with vermillion mark on Her forehead.)

23. कालाञ्जनं kālāñjanaṁ (black collyrium applied to the eyelashes or the inner coat of the eyelids)

24. वालीयुगलं vālīyugalaṁ (adorning ear studs)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (864) Kanat-kanaka-tāṭaṅkā - She is wearing glittering ear studs made of shining gold.  Saundarya Laharī (verse 28) says that it is due to the power of Her tāṭaṅkā (ear studs), Śiva becomes deathless, even after swallowing the terrible poison.  It is also said that sun and moon are Her ear studs.)

25. मणिकुण्डलयुगलं maṇikuṇḍalayugalaṁ (a pair of hanging ear studs made of precious stones fixed to the pair of vālīyugalaṁ)

26. नासाभरणं nāsābharaṇaṁ (nose studs)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (20) tārākānthi-tiraskāri-nāsabharaṇa-bhāsurā - She is wearing a nose stud that outshines the stars.  Her nose stud is made up of rubies and pearls.  Tārā means stars   Tārā also means two goddesses Maṅgalā and Śuklā. Śuklā has later come to be known as Śukrā. Possibly these Maṅgalā and Śukrā could mean the two planets Mars and Venus.  Each planet governs certain precious stones.  Planet Mars rules ruby that is red in colour and Venus rules diamond (Mani Mālā II.79).  It can also be said that these two planets adorn Her nose.)

27. अधरयावकं adharayāvakaṁ (lipstick)

28. प्रदमभूषणं pradamabhūṣaṇaṁ (māṅgalya-sūtra)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (30) Kāmeśa-baddha-māṅgalya-sūtra-śobhita-kandharā - Her neck is adorned with the māṅgalya sūtra (married women wear this) tied by Kāmeśvara.)

29. कनकचिन्ताकं kanakacintākaṁ (gold necklace that is worn close to the neck; not of hanging type)

30. पदकं padakaṁ (comparatively small pendant)

31. महापदकं mahāpadakaṁ (bigger pendant)

32. मुक्तावलीmuktāvalī (pearl necklace)

33. एकावलिं ekāvaliṁ (a necklace made of 27 pearls; probably referring to 27 stars)

34. छन्नवीरं channavīraṁ (crisscrossing of gold braids)

35. केयुरयुगल चतुष्टयं keyurayugala catuṣṭayaṁ (bangle like ornaments worn on Her four upper arms)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (31) Kanakāṅgada-keyūra-kamanīya-bhujanvitā - kanaka – golden; aṅgada – bangles or bracelets; keyūra is a type of ornament worn in the upper arms.  She is wearing these ornaments.  Possibly, this could mean the following.  Both these ornaments are made out of gold and worn in the arms.)

36. वलयावलिं valayāvaliṁ (concatenation of bangles)

37. ऊर्मिकावलिं ūrmikāvaliṁ (rings in every finger)

38. काञ्चीदाम kāñcīdāma (waist band)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (36) stanabhāra-dalanmadhya-paṭṭabandha-valitrayā - The golden belt that She wears supports Her waist as it bends under the heaviness of Her bosoms, resulting in three folds in Her stomach area.)

39. कटिसूत्रं kaṭisūtraṁ (gold girdle)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (38) Ratna-kiṅkiṇikā-ramya-raśanā-dāma-bhūṣitā - She is adorned with girdle studded with mini bells and gems.  Devi’s Pañcadaśī mantra consists of three parts or kūṭa-s.  Vāgbhava kūṭa was discussed from nāma 13 to 29.  Madhya kūṭa was discussed from 30 to 38 and Śaktī kūṭa will be discussed from 39 to 47. Devi’s face is vāgbhava kūṭa, from face to hip is madhya kūṭa (also known as kāmarāja kūṭa) and Śaktī kūṭa is hip downwards.)

40. सौभाग्याभरणं saubhāgyābharaṇaṁ (various gold shapes are fixed to gold girdle; what is referred here is a gold leaf resembling peepul tree, which signifies auspiciousness.)

41. पादकटकं pādakaṭakaṁ (anklets)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (46) siñjāna-maṇi-mañjīra-maṇḍita-srīpadāmbujā - She is wearing anklets made out of precious gems that shine.)

42. रत्ननूपुरं ratnanūpuraṁ (ornaments for the toes, ankles and feet interconnecting them)

43. पादाङ्गुलीयकं pādāṅgulīayakaṁ (toe rings; generally they are worn on the second toe; but they are also worn on all the toes webbed by a gold chains).

44. पाशं pāśaṁ (noose or chord)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (8) Rāgasvarūpa-pāśāḍhyā - Rāga means desire or a wish.  Pāśa is a type of rope used to pull an object.  She pulls all the desires of Her devotees using this rope.  There are three śakti-s (śakti in this context means power) – iccā, jñāna and kriya.  This nāma talks about iccā śakti or the desire.  She never allows Her devotees to sink with desires.  This arm is Her left upper arm and is represented and is represented by Aśvārūdā Devi.)

45. अङ्कुशं aṅkuśaṁ (an elephant hook)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (9) Krodhākāraṅkuśojvalā - She holds an elephant hook in her right upper arm.  Krodha means hatred and akāra means knowledge.  This nāma talks about subtle body.  Knowledge is always subtle.  She uses this elephant hook to destroy the hatred if developed in Her devotees and gives them knowledge.)

46. पुण्ड्रेक्षुचापां puṇḍrekṣucāpāṁ (puṇḍra – a type of red coloured sugar cane; ikṣu – also means sugar cane) adorning Her left arm with sugar cane bow.

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (10) Manorūpekṣu-kodaṇḍā - Mind involves both saṃkalpa and vikalpa.  Saṃkalpa means resolve, process of thought.  Vikalpa means difference of perception.  Both are opposite to each other.  Mind is also subtle like knowledge.  Mind is reflected through the five sensory organs.  It has both saṃkalpa and vikalpa quality as it acts through the impressions received from sense organs that get fine tuned in the form of thought and finally explodes in the form of actions.  Ikṣu means sugar cane and kodaṇḍa means a bow.  She is holding in Her left upper arm a bow of sugar cane.)

47. पुष्पबाणान् puṣpabāṇān (adorning Her with five flowers as arrows in Her right lower arm.)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (11) Pañcatanmātra-sāyakā - The five flower arrows represent five subtle elements. These five flowers or arrows are described differently in various tantra śāstra-s.  These five flowers are lotus flower, raktakairava flower, kalhara flower, indivara flower and flowers of mango tree.  These five flowers represent excitement, madness, confusion, stimulation and destruction.)
48. श्रीमन्माणिक्यपादुके śrīmanmāṇikyapāduke (a pair of sandals made of ruby)

She is getting ready to return to Śri Cakra, where Kāmeśvara is waiting for Her.

49. स्वसमान वेषभि आवरण देवताभिः सह श्री चक्राधिरोहनं

svasamāna veṣabhi āvaraṇa devatābhiḥ saha śrī cakrādhirohanaṁ

(She is ascending Śri Cakra with Her attendants (āvaraṇa devi-s), who are equally well dressed and ornamented. At this point all āvaraṇa devi-s take their respective positions; but She stands beside Kāmeśvara.)

50. कामेश्वराङ्कपर्यङ्क उपवेशनं kāmeśvarāṅkaparyaṅka upaveśanaṁ (She is sitting on the left lap of Kāmeśvara)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (52) Śiva-kāmeśvarāṅkasthā - She sits on the left thigh of Śiva.  This is the form of Saguṇa Brahman.  Śiva is Prakāśa form and self illuminating and Śaktī is His Vimarśa form.  It is good to meditate upon this posture of Them.  Why She is sitting on his left thigh?  Heart is on the left side and She is said to be Śiva’s heart (could also mean love).

51. अमृतासवचषकं amṛtāsavacaṣakaṁ (offering Them cup of honey)

52 and 53 are to be offered twice, one for Kāmeśvara and Kāmeśvarī.

52. आचमनीयं ācamanīyaṁ (offering water to wash Their mouths).

53. कर्पूरवीटिकां karpūravīṭikāṁ (Karpūravītikā is a combination of fragrant ingredients, used to chew along with the betel leaves.  The ingredients used are – saffron, cardamom, clove, camphor, kastūri, nutmeg and mace or myristica fragrans or jātipattrī (arillus of the nut also known as myristica officinalis).  The ingredients are finely powdered and mixed with powdered sugar candy.  This Karpūravītikā powder when used with betel leaves for chewing gives immense fragrance and delicious taste).  When She chews this, it provides fragrance to the entire universe.)

(Lalitā Sahasranāma (559) Tāmbhūla-pūrita-mukhī - She is fond of chewing betel leaves with karpūra vīṭikā (nāma 26).  The betel leaves turn Her lips into red colour.  This nāma says that Her face shines with betel leaves in Her mouth.  The fragrance of betel leaves with karpūra vīṭikā emanates pleasing fragrance.)

54. आनन्दोल्लासविलासहासं ānandollāsavilāsahāsaṁ (She smiles at us if we have done all the above with devotion and love. When She smiles, we also smile at Her with tears rolling down. The tears we shed now signals Her acceptance of our upacāra-s offered to Her.)

55. मङ्गलरात्रिकम् maṅgalarātrikam (Showing nine lamps to Them. This is a sign of auspiciousness. There is a separate procedure for this, which will be dealt with in the next part. Only after performing this, further upacāra-s should be continued.)

56. छत्रं chatraṁ (offering them gold umbrella with gems and diamonds emebdeed. This is done as a mark of paying our respects to Rājarājesvarā and Rājarājesvarī (Kāmeśvara and Kāmeśvarī).

57. चामरं cāmaraṁ (this is a kind of fan made out of plumes of white horse; They are being fanned with cāmara, a mark of respect.)

58. दर्पणं darpaṇaṁ (showing mirror to them in order to make them look at the mirror and enjoy the company of each other. It is also a sign of auspiciousness.)

59. तालवृन्तं tālavṛntaṁ (fanning them hand fans made out of palm leaves.)

60. गन्धं gandhaṁ (offering them sandal paste)

61. पुष्पं puṣpaṁ (offering Her flowers – flowers can be placed at Their lotus feet).

Following three should be done at the end of navāvaraṇa pūjā.

62. धूपं dhūpaṁ (offering incense; incense should be shown to them from a distance, so that it does not affect their inhalation (they are to be contemplated with life).

63. दीपं dīpaṁ (waving of lamps before Them. This is done out of reverence. There are several types of dīpa-s, including ekahāratī dīpaṁ, alaṅkāra dīpaṁ, pañcahārati dīpaṁ, Gāyatrī dīpaṁ, nandi dīpaṁ, pūrṇakumbha dīpaṁ and finally nīrājana.

64. नैवेद्यं naivedyaṁ (offering of food and other delicacies along with fruits. First, cooked food is to be offered, followed by ācamanīyaṁ (to wash their hands, mouth and feet) followed by offering of drinking water, followed by fruits and finally betel leaves with karpūravītikā.)

Now we have wait for Their ascent to proceed further.