I've always been aware of Kali but never knew much about her. To be honest, she's always scared me. Well, maybe not scared, but she's always seemed too strange and inaccessible. Like she doesn't and cannot belong to me, but only to those of her culture. Like I could only lay claim to her if I was Indian or Bengali. I don't believe such things anymore, just like I no longer believe that I can't be Thai. So maybe it was the right time for me to rediscover her. Because I suddenly felt like she was there for me to discover.
The images I found of her, dark, fierce, huge tongue protruding, severed heads round her neck, standing on the body of Lord Shiva (who threw himself under her feet to stop her killing frenzy during battle) no longer seem strange or distant, but disconcertingly familiar. Seeing them was like experiencing a glimmer of recognition. What was even more surprising was reading that this Goddess of Death, this Dark Mother Goddess, has devotees who consider their bond with her to be intimate and loving, like the bond they have with their own mothers. This is what is foreign to me, the idea of a warm, intimate, loving motherly bond. And yet, Kali appeals to me. This quote I found on one of the sites about Kali is what ultimately pulled me in:
"My child, you need not know much in order to please Me.
Only Love Me dearly.
Speak to me, as you would talk to your mother,
if she had taken you in her arms."
The "if". If she had taken you in her arms. Love me and talk to me like your mother, IF she had taken you in her arms.
And so I feel welcomed. Embraced. Reading that, I wanted to make her my own, wanted to sit at her feet and be held and let her know the true darkness in my heart. After all, who would understand better than her? When I'm in one of my foul moods, feeling torn up from the inside out with frustration and fury, Kali would not tell me to go draw a rainbow sprinkled with glitter or heal myself with makeup and candles. She is the Goddess of Death & Destruction. And yet, she holds her arms out like a mother, a true mother. And in her, I find an unlikely place to rest my head. And maybe even my heart.