Pretty Devi of Hinduism

Prithvi

Below the Aisa trinity of Maha Maya, Devi Durga and Kali Ma, there are other goddesses in Hinduism.

Prithvi (Sanskrit: पृथ्वी, pṛthvī, also pṛthivī) “the Vast One” is the Sanskrit name for the earth as well as the name of a devi (goddess) in Hinduism, specifically Bhūmi Devi. Other names include Dhra, Dharti, Dhrithri (that which holds everything).

In Hinduism the specific local indwelling mother deity of Earth (as opposed to the mother deity of all creation) is called Bhumi. In Buddhism Gautama Buddha called upon Bhumi as his witness when he achieved Enlightenment.

She is a national personification in Indonesia, where she is known as Ibu Pertiwi.  The allegory is Tanah Air (Indonesian: land and water), the Indonesian Motherland.

As Prithvi Tattwa, she is the mother of the Earth, the essence of the element earth.

As Pṛthvī Mātā “Mother Earth” she contrasts with Dyaus Pita “father sky”. She had three children with the Dyaus. Her daughter Ushas is the goddess of the dawn. Her two sons were Agni, the god of fire, and Indra, the god of thunder. In the Rigveda, earth and sky are frequently addressed as a duality Dyava-prthivi, and often indicated by the idea of two complementary “half-shells.”

In one myth, a demon took Prithvi to the bottom of the cosmic ocean and held her captive there. Varaha, an avatar of the God Vishnu in the form of a boar, rescued her and restored her to her rightful place (she is on his shoulder in the picture). Prithvi sometimes takes the form of a cow, and the first milk from every cow is offered to her. Prithu, an incarnation of Vishnu, milked her in cow’s form.

In another myth, heaven and earth were parted by Lord Varuna. However they united and Heaven fertilizes earth with rain. Other than her maternal and productive characteristics she is also known for her supportive nature. She accommodates everything and is stationary. Goddess Prithvi along with Heaven is prayed for wealth, power. The waters produced by the duo are considered as pure, nourishing and fertile. People also worship them together for protection from danger, to compensate sin thereby bringing in happiness. Generally in a funeral the dead person is asked to go to the lap of mother earth. She is often requested to cover the dead tenderly.

Pṛithvī Sūkta or Bhūmī Sūkta is a celebrated hymn of the Atharvaveda (AVŚ 12.1) dedicated to Prthivi. It consists of 63 verses. Here is a small excerpt of a translation:

 Earth in which lie the sea, the river and other waters,
in which food and cornfields have come to be,
in which lives all that breathes and that moves,
May she confer on us the finest of her yield.
Earth, in which the waters, common to all,
moving on all sides, flow unfailingly, day and night,
may she pour on us milk in many streams,
and endow us with lustre.
May those born of thee, O Earth,
be for our welfare, free from sickness and waste.
Wakeful through a long life, we shall become
bearers of tribute to thee.
Earth, my mother, set me securely with bliss
in full accord with heaven,
O wise one,
uphold me in grace and splendour.

Prithvi mudra is one of the yoga mudras, or hand gestures, that balances the earth element in the body. Prithvi mudra strengthens the body, relieves fatigue, promotes endurance, boosts self-confidence and increases one’s tolerance level.

 

This is a Dutch Guyana text based on:
http://www.goddessaday.com/hindu/prithvi
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prithvi

 

 

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