Lakshmi is the household goddess of most Hindu families, and a favorite of women. Although she is worshiped daily, the festive month of October is Lakshmi’s special month. Lakshmi Puja is celebrated on the full moon night of Kojagari Purnima
Goddess Lakshmi is the wife of Lord Vishnu. She is worshiped by all as she is the provider of wealth and purity. she is also a symbol of beauty fertility and auspiciousness. She protects her devotees from any money related problem and worries
Birth of goddess Lakshmi
Initially goddess Lakshmi was born as the daughter of sage Brighu and she married lord Vishnu.
Once sage Dhurvasa got a garland from a celestial dancer who had received it from the great goddess Adhiparasakthi for performing in front of her. Dhurvasa presented the garland to the god of heavens lord Indra. But Indra did not respect the sages gift and put the garland around the head of his elephant Airvatha. The elephant put the garland under his foot and crushed it. This enraged sage Dhurvasa and he cursed the gods as to they would lose all their wealth, power and strength.
So goddess Lakshmi also left heaven and took abode in the depth of the ocean. Then heaven was attacked by the demons and the devas were chased away. Realizing their mistake the devas prayed to lord Vishnu. On his orders they churned the Parkadal ocean to get the divine nectar called “Amirth” which would give them back their strength and power.
When they were churning many precious things emerged from the ocean. Along with them was goddess Lakshmi who came out as a beautiful lady with a garland in her hand. She put that garland around lord Vishnu and he accepted her as his divine consort.
Marriage of goddess Lakshmi with lord Vishnu – Churning of the ocean
As mentioned above the gods lost their strength because of sage Dhurvasa’s curse and the demons took over heaven
The devas then prayed to lord Vishnu for help. The lord happy with their prayers agreed to help them. He told them that only if they drank the divine nectar they can get back their strength and power. That nectar could be got only by churning the ocean Parkadal
But that was a mighty task and it could be done only with great strength. The devas had lost all their strength because of the curse. So they asked lord Vishnu a way for churning the ocean.
Lord Vishnu asked them to use mountain Mandara as their churner and snake Vasuki as the rope to turn the churner. Then the devas were bewildered because turning mount Mandara was not an easy thing even when they were full of strength. Now they are totally weak so they were wondering how to do that.
Lord Vishnu understanding their difficulty asked them to ask the help of the asuras because it was only with the strength of the asuras the mountain could be turned. The devas asked then will not the asuras also ask a portion fo the nectar for the work they had done. For that lord Vishnu told he will take care. He also warned the devas to catch the tail of snake Vasuki and not it’s head.
Indra then approached the asura king Bali. Bali agreed to help them if they were also given a portion fo the nectar.
Then they started churning the ocean. Mount Mandara was used as the churner and snake Vasuki as the rope. When the devas and the asuras carried the mountian from its place to the ocean it was so heavy that it toppled and crushed some of the devas and asuras. Then lord Vishnu appeared and sprinkled some holy water on them they were got back to life.
In the ocean the mountain kept sinking and could not be kept straight. The gods could not find a solid article for support. Again they prayed to lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu took the form of a giant tortise and gave support to the mountain. Then using snake Vasuki as the rope they started churning.
The gods held on to the tail end and the asuras to the head end by choice. As the churning started snake Vasuki spat out its poison in pain and this caused blisters in the asuras but they could do nothing as they had chose that spot out of choice
The first thing to emerge from the ocean after the churning was poison Halahal. The Halahal mushroomed into a huge cloud threatening to engulf the whole world. If the poison was not removed, the whole world would be suffocated.
Indra then prayed to lord Shiva to save them and the world from this poison. Shiva heard the prayers and came to their rescue immediately. He realized that if something was not done the Halahal would destroy the entire universe. He grabbed the entire poison in his palm and swallowed it in a gulp. He realized that he had put himself in danger, but that was the only way to save the universe.
Goddess Parvathi who was by the side of lord Shiva realized what the lord had done and arrested the poison in his throat so that it could neither come out nor go out from his throat. So till date if you see lord Shiva’s pictures you can see the poison as blue colour in his throat and he is called Neelakanta
Subsequently the Kamadhenu cow, Ucchashravas horse, Kalpavriksha tree etc. also came out of the ocean. These were shared by the Devas and the Asuras.
The divine form of goddess Lakshmi
Why people pray to goddess Lakshmi
Festivals of goddess Lakshmi
Temples of goddess Lakshmi
Lakshmi Narayanan temple in delhi built by Birla
Sripuram golden temple in Vellore
Mahalakshmi temple Kohlapur Maharashtra
Ashtalaskhmi temple Chennai
lakshmi devi temple of doddagaddavalli karnataka india
mahalakshmi temple bandivade goa
Poomparai Maha Lakshmi Temple – Kodaikanal
Read about other gods here