The story of Goddess Lakshmi
Lakshmi, The Hindu Goddess is Goddess of wealth, beauty and fertility. Her four hands represents the four goal of human life , dharma, kama, artha and moksha. She is also called Sri or Thirumagal because she is endowed with six auspicious and divine qualities and also because she is source of strength even to Vishnu.
She is consort of Lord Vishnu. When Vishnu incarnated on earth as Ram and Krishna, she also took incarnation as Sita, Radha, Rukmini and Satyabhama.
Like Goddess Durga’s nine manifestations, She too has eight iconic manifestations. The eight fold form of goddess is known as Ashta Lakshmi. It is believed that these eight fold forms fulfill human necessities and desire through their individual nature and manifestations.
Eight forms of Goddess Lakshmi
The eight forms of Lakshmi or Ashta lakshmi comprises of :
1. Aadi Lakshmi is ancient form of Goddess.
2. Dhana Lakshmi provider of money and gold.
3.. Dhanya lakshmi provider of agricultural wealth.
4. Gaja Lakshmi provider of animal wealth like cattle and elephant.
5. Santana Lakshmi bestower of offsprings.
6. Veer Lakshmi bestower of valor in battles and courage and strength for overcoming difficulties in life.
7. Vidya Lakshmi the bestower of knowledge of arts and sciences.
8. Vijaya Lakshmi bestower of victory, not only in battles but also in conquering hurdles in order to beget success.
Gods (sura) and demons (asura) were mortal at one time. Amrit, the divine nectar that grant immortality can be obtained by churning the kshirsagar (ocean of milk). The churning commenced with devas on one side and asura on the other side. Vishnu incarnated as Kurma, the tortoise, and a mountain was placed on the turtle as a churning pole. Vasuki, king of serpent was wrapped around the mountain to churn the ocean. According to Vishnu puran, Goddess Lakshmi came out of the ocean bearing lotus along with divine cow Kamdhenu, Varuni, the tree Parijat, the Apsaras, the Chandra and Dhanvantari with Amrita. When she appeared she was given the option to go to devas or asura , she chose devas side and among all the deities she chose to be with Lord Vishnu.
According to Garuda purana, Linga purana and Padma purana, she is considered to be daughter of sage Bhrigu and his wife Khayati, and was named Bhargavi.
Many Hindus worship Lakshmi on Diwali, the festival of light. This festival is considered as most important and joyous festival of the year. Sharad purnima is another occasion when Lakshmi is worshiped in Bengal and Odisha.
In Japan :
Goddess kishijoten, of Japan,is Goddess of beauty, fortune and prosperity, corresponds to Goddess Lakshmi.
In Tibet and Nepal:
Goddess Vasudha is closely analogous to Goddess Lakshmi.
The pronunciation is Lux-me like luxury not lacks-me, like something lacking. Though often depicted standing on lotus, pictures of Lakshmi, kept on altars depict her seated comfortably because you want her to stay for a while.