The Book of Lakshmi

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Item Code: IHK086
Author: Royina Grewal
Publisher: Penguin Books India Pvt. Ltd.
Language: English
Edition: 2012
ISBN: 9780143068167
Pages: 170
Cover: Paperback
Other Details 7.0 inch X 4.3 inch
Weight 140 gm
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Shipped to 153 countries
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Book Description
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Lakshmi is the goddess of all that is good -wealth (dhana), beauty (saundarya) and happiness (sukha). As Vishnu’s consort and in her incarnations as Sita and Rukmini, she represents the ideal of feminity in Hinduism. She is also Shri, the goddess of fertility and grain, and Mahalakshmi, the amalgam of the goddesses Kali, Lakshmi and Sarasvati. She is benevolent and generous, yet it takes surprisingly little to offend her. And when she leaves, her place is taken by Alakshmi, all that Lakshmi is not-poverty, pestilence and ill fortune.

How did this popular and accessible goddess come to represent these qualities? R. Mahalakshmi presents an evocative picture of the mythical and historical development of the goddess Lakshmi. Using a range of sources, from ancient texts to sculptures and everyday religious customs and prayers, this fascinating and deeply insightful book sheds new light not only on the figure of Lakshmi, but also on the fundamental tenets of Hinduism as it is practised today.

R. Mahalakshmi studied history at Osmania University and Central University, Hyderabad, and holds a doctorate from Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi. Currently, she is Assistant Professor at the Centre for Historical Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, where she teaches ancient Indian history.

Vaikunthe ya Mahalaksmir Laksmih Ksirodsagare
Svargalaksmir Indragehe Rajalaksmir Nripalaye
Grhalaksmisca Grhinam gehe ca Grhadevata
Surabhi sa gavam Mata Daksina Yajnakamini

You are Mahalakshmi in Vaikuntha and Lakshmi in the milky ocean’ Svargalakshmi in the celestial abode of Indra and Rajalakshmi in the king’s dwelling place; the householder’s home is blessed by Grihalakshmi and all residences are protected by you as guardian deity; you are the celestial cow of plenty Surabhi amidst cows, and the mother Dakshina, the wife and fruit of the sacrifice.


Introduction : The Embodiment of Wealth and Beauty 1
Lakshmi, Daughter of the Ocean, Wife of Vishnu 13
Shri Lakshmi and Other Deities 49
Symbols of Lakshmi 69
The Iconography of Lakshmi 95
Lakshmi Festivals and Worship 117
The Ashta Lakshmi Stotram and the Kanakadhara Stotram 135
Epilogue 151
Notes 155
Bibliography 165
Acknowledgements 171
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