This gorgeous ritual diagram is the best best-known ritual diagram (yantra) used for invoking the blessings of a stunning goddess. Śrī Kanakadhārā (“Auspicious Stream of Gold”), is a wish-fulfilling deity associated with both material abundance and spiritual wealth. She is a form of the benevolent goddess Lakṣmī, famous as the subject of a lyrical poem by the sage Ādi Śaṅkarāchārya.
The most renowned temple in India associated this goddess was built on the location where all her blessings touched the earth as a shower of gold. It is built in the mountains of Karnataka, where she is known as Śrī Mookambika. Here, she is dressed as dark goddess Kālī in the morning, Lakṣmṣ ī during
the day, and at night as Sarasvatī, the white-clad goddess of creativity, speech, and knowledge. So she is recognized as Adi Sakti, the primordial power that creates, sustains, and destroys all.
It is at this location where the great sage went begging and a poor elderly woman gave him a piece of fruit. When he asked her why she wasn’t also eating, she confessed that it was the last piece of food she possessed. Inspired by her generosity and devotion, he called on goddess Lakṣmṣ ī to bless the impoverished devotee, and the goddess herself appeared directly as a shower of golden fruit.
Triangles are prominent in this design. The triangle is used to invoke the Fire Element and the associated qualities of transformation, purification, passion, intelligence, and enlightenment. The upward triangle invokes the burning quality of transformation that destroys negative karmas and attachments.
The downward triangle invokes the watery quality of transformation that expands our karmas to merge with the Supreme, encompassing all karmas and dissolving attachments of the personal ego.
Deity yantras typically have a dot at the center representing the “eye” of the deity and the single divine Source. This is often surrounded by triangles, which invoke the Fire Element. The rings of lotus petals are associated with the water element, and the spreading radiant blessing-power of the deity. The
square outer shape invokes the stability of the Earth Element. The four T-shaped gates remind us that there are four basic ways to approach the deity at the center of the yantra: mind (manas), intellect (buddhi), consciousness (chit), and “I-Am-Ness” (ahaṁkāra).
This particular yantra design is based on traditional ritual diagrams for invocation, using proportions from the Harish Johari yantra lineage. The colors and ornamentation were designed by Ekabhumi. It is suitable for worship on an altar, meditation, and ritual invocation (puja).
About Alankara Editions
Alankara Editions are multi-media artworks offered in extremely limited numbers. Each is crafted with extraordinary care and the very finest materials. All are based upon traditional sacred geometry designs from the Tantric Hindu tradition.
Every design in this series begins with devotion: Ekabhumi sits in meditation, chanting the sacred mantra of the deity, and asks for blessings to begin the work. Each original artwork is made entirely by hand, beginning at an auspicious time sacred to the deity invoked. Throughout the process, the appropriate mantra is chanted continuously. The artwork is
then digitized and rendered as a limited number of fine-art quality giclée prints, always using archival-quality inks on 100% cotton rag acid-free paper. Next, prints are carefully cut out and mounted on a Baltic Birch hardwood panel.
To imbue each print with unique properties, precious substances such as platinum leaf and 24-karat gold leaf are often applied, but sometimes we also incorporate playful materials like glitter. Every surface is then hand-painted to ensure durable, vivid colors; no part of the underlying print remains visible. This is essentially an original artwork that uses the print as a guide for accuracy. Finally, a certificate of authenticity is glued to the back panel, signed and numbered by each specialist in our team who contributed to the artwork.
This labor-intensive process results in unique, multi-media masterpieces with a spiritual potency lacking in mass-produced mechanical reproductions.
Alankara Editions are named for the process of ritual adornment. Alankara (अलंका र or Alaṃkāra) is usually translated as “ornament, decoration.” It is typically used to describe a concept in Indian classical music or as a figure of speech in traditional poetry. Alankara has a long and venerated tradition in Hindu ritual, one of the sixteen upachara, or rites of devotion. This is usually in the form of augmenting the statue of a deity with silks, jewelry, flowers, and fruit.
About Deity Yantras
These stunning designs are spiritual implements (yantras) composed of symmetrically-arranged geometric shapes. “Yantra” means “device” and can refer to any ritual tool or diagram. A deity yantra is a realization device recognized as an emanation of divine power into our human level of perception. Deity yantras make excellent meditation tools and help to bring forth the virtuous qualities of the deity represented.
Deity yantras are similar in function, design, and use to maṇḍalas. They are said to have been revealed to ancient sages known as Rishis (ṛṣi) for the benefit of humankind. Many consider them the most subtle and powerful of all representations of divine beings. Deity yantras are prized for their ability to invoke divine powers (śaktis) or provide a throne (pitha) for a deity (deva).