Jaya Kula is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization offering opportunities to learn and practice in the traditions of direct realization Tantra and Anandamayi Ma. Shambhavi Sarasvati is the spiritual director.

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All posts tagged Shakti

Fierce mama Ganesha

Anger and Kindness

Satsang with ShambhaviShambhavi riffs on kindness, fierce compassion, your natural Shakti and plain old being mean.

Satsang with Shambhavi is a weekly podcast about spirituality, love, death, devotion and waking up while living in a messy world.

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Anandamayi Ma Community God Karma Love Politics Sadhana Self-realization Tantra Teachers and students

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Gender Karma in Spiritual Communities

The Hindu pantheon of deities presents us with a playground of playfully shifting gender expressions.  Nonetheless, the force of conventional gender role expectations and confusion plays itself out everywhere, including in spiritual communities.

The group of traditions and lineages that comprise what is called “Hinduism,” and Tantra, include the worship of deities that manifest all of the conventional gender roles. But we also have male deities who appear in half-male/ half-female forms, or even who show up as all-female at times. We have dancing male deities and male deities who give birth. We have female deities who ride lions and tigers and are fiercer warriors than their male counterparts. Everybody gets to wear jewelry and grow their hair long.

A rare image of Sri Vidya Ganesha - a female form of Ganesha

A rare image of Shri Vidya Ganesha, a female form of Ganesha

My Guru, Anandamayi Ma, at times incarnated as Durga or Chinnamasta, both female deities, and, at other times as Krishna or Lord Shiva. Read On…

3 Kinds of Spiritual Teachers

In the Tantrik tradition, and Asian spiritual traditions generally, there are a number of ways to categorize different kinds of student-teacher relationships.

I find it useful to contemplate these categories. Why? Because if you are in a fantasy relationship with your “teacher,” you are wasting energy. It is empowering to have clarity about the kind of relationship you are actually in, or want to be in. Read On…

Shakti Rises: Sex Abuse, Sexism and Renewal

During the recently renewed sex abuse and violence crisis in the Satyananda yoga lineage, some of my students and others online have suggested that recurring incidences of sex abuse, violence and coercion of women by Gurus and spiritual teachers in Hindu communities are due to the “suppression” of male sexuality in India.

Let me just say NO. Feeling sexually suppressed or repressed does not translate into sex abuse. Sexism translates into sex abuse, violence and coercion. Women, girls and childrens’ empowerment translates into greater safety. Read On…

Saving Shakti

During my childhood, the former African nation of Biafra was in the midst of civil war and a great famine. A million people died of starvation.

One day, I heard a news story about the relief efforts. A helicopter pilot responsible for dropping food into the war-torn area described how he had seen villagers fighting over grains of rice, scattered in the dirt during the food drop. This story made a deep impression. I still cannot measure rice into a cup without thinking of it, and if a grain falls onto the countertop, I make certain that it gets into the pot, that it does not go to waste. Read On…