By the Power of the Smokey Widow

Oh Dhumavati!
You are the Widow goddess
You stand alone in places most desolate
You show us the power of facing the loss
of things we have lost and are yet to lose,
You reveal the power of the widow
that stands just one heartbeat
Before despair
Indeed you stand
beyond Despair!
To you we bow.

– Boonath

Dhumavati is the end of what is to be known. She is Jyestha, the elder one.
She so ancient that to talk of her wisdom and teaching, only serves to wrap her up in riddles, and so we will keep this presentation short.

Dhumavati is the intensely ugly Widow Goddess, bitter, barren and bereft of Beauty.
Her nose is beaklike, her countenance inspires disgust,
She is dirty, with only a few rotten teeth left, her breasts are empty and withered and she wears a perpetual scowl of an expression upon her face.
She is an elder Goddess, the grandmother of all goddesses it could be said.
Dhumavati is difficult to approach as she inspires deep disgust.
Yet Dhumavati holds the deep wisdom of age and loss.

Dhumavati has no peer and is distinct among Goddess as having no opposite.
She is a Shakti that is self-contained and stands alone.

Tales of Smoke and Widows

Smoke is an important element when working with Dhumavati. When invoking her, the more Smokey the better. Smoke is the secret key to Dhumavati.

Dhum in her name actually means smoke. Dhumavati is the one who is smokey.
She is born of the death of Sati in the fire. As Sati burned to death in what was to be her sacred marriage fire, she became the unobtainable widow.
Sati’s insulted and dishonoured spirit manifested and took form in bitter smoke. The smoke became Dhumavati; she who is born of smoke.

Another story tells of how Sati after uniting in love with Shiva, had started to live together with him in the Himalayas. Sati was always hungry as the Himalayas did not offer the royal dishes that she was used to.
One day she became so maddeningly enraged with hunger that she turned on Shiva and started to eat her way to widowhood.
Shiva Howled and fought his way out from inside her stomach until she could not help but vomit him out in thick clouds of smoke The enraged Shiva glared at her with his third eye and cursed her to lose her beauty. And so she shriveled up into an old decrepit hag with a terrible ever hungry and unsatisfied expression upon her face.

She is old and Wise

Dhumavati has the wisdom of years. She holds the secrets hidden by the smoke of time. She offers us time-honoured and weathered secrets that can easily escape the pursuits of the youthful striving spirit.
Dhumavati brings us to the places we might easily pass by and avoid. It is easy to view her realm as being devoid of value, for it is ugly, dirty, barren and widowed.
To venture toward her is to go into the places we would not usually go to.

Her age takes us to the wisdom behind the formulations of time.
Dhumavati teaches us of the wise acknowledgment of that which we have lost over the span of our lives.
If something is lost or dies, it is often a cause for lament. But it also holds the seed of the rebirth of another mode of being.
Dhumavati is the Shakti that shows us that when one thing dies, another is born.
The Tantric work with Dhumavati is to listen to the elder voice that exists at the crossroads of every loss. If we heed her aged being by learning to look with her eyes then and only then does wisdom grow.
Dhumavati can assist us is in our widowed parts. She shows us the need to go into deep feeling. She reveals the healing nature of mourning and facing loss and emptiness with feeling. She opens the creative power latent in that which we might all to easily choose to turn away from.

Dhum Dhum Dhumavati Svahh

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