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Om shrim mahalkshmyai namah!
Reverence to the power of sri, the great goddess Lakshmi!
Imagine the lotus flower, which thrives and blooms radiantly even in the muddiest of waters. You can evoke a similar abundance and beauty in your own life by repeating this mantra, which celebrates the power of sri in the form of the Hindu goddess Lakshmi. Sri is an important concept in yoga and Tantric philosophy. The word simultaneously means prosperity, elegance, radiant power, and sacredness. Lakshmi is the exquisite embodiment of these qualities. This mantra calls upon Lakshmi as a form of the Divine that dwells within you and all beings, rather than as an external deity.
When you recognize the power of sri within you, it leads to contentment no matter what your circumstances. You’ll feel less like grasping, and you’ll be better able to experience gratitude for all that you have. As the embodiment of sri, Lakshmi teaches that the inner state of feeling that you have enough creates the experience of prosperity in your outer life, not the other way around. No matter how much time, money, and love you have, you will always feel as though it’s not enough until you can evoke and honor the sri within you. When you do this, what you have feels like more than enough.
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Begin this practice by sitting quietly. Repeat this mantra tenderly while feeling the power of sri that is within you. Know that you have the innate capacity to manifest sri, and thus overcome all sense of lack.
Christopher D. Wallis is a Sanskrit scholar at the University of California, Berkeley.