Guhyeshwari Devi is the epitome of all Guhya wisdom of tantra. As per “Siddha Dhamra”, She is the first as well as the foremost goddess who in her womb keeps all the secretive knowledge hidden and portrays something else to the perceiver. She is like an orange fruit which keeps the seed hidden inside her and portrays herself to be the flesh and pulp of the orange fruit.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, her Vidhya is also known as “Guhya Garbha Vidhya”. Besides that, as per various scriptures, she is also believed to be one of the presiding deities of a Shakti Peeth that is situated in Kathmandu, Nepal adjacent to Pashupati Nath temple.
Lastly, she is also believed by the “Kaula Siddha” dharma to have her kula which is called “Guhya Kula”. The kula starts and in her, it ends. Her consort is Kapali Bhairava.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, Guhyeshwari Devi or Guhyeshwari only is composed of two words, Guhya and Ishwari, where Guhya implies secretive spiritual wisdom while Ishwari implies goddess. Therefore, the synthesis of both words gives the meaning that Guhyeshwari Devi is the goddess of all secretive wisdom of the spiritual world.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, she is portrayed as a bluish-black goddess who is seated in guhya asana, and both hands are folded at the backside of the body which holds a conch shell and a lotus. The guhya asana is performed by crossing both legs like padmasana but is lifted upwards towards the navel and it remains crossed. Unlike other goddesses, she doesn’t show her hands but she keeps it hidden by folding it in her back area and she holds conch shell and lotus which implies that she doesn’t let the world know what her power and prowess are. She also wears the skull crown of five Bhairavas which is also called “Panch Pret Bhairava” or Panch Pret Bhairava Mukut. It denotes Panch Mahabhuta or five basic elements which are Jala (water), Prithvi (earth), Vayu (air), Teja (fire) and Akasha (emptiness). It also denotes the Panch Kosh of the body. (annamaya kosha, pranamaya kosha, manomaya kosha, vigyanamaya kosha and anandamaya kosha).
As per “Siddha Dharma”, her prowess is her ability to impart secretive wisdom to the world and to encourage people to search for bliss in everything because bliss is also by nature secret. It lies hidden inside everything.
The origin story of Guhyeshwari Devi
As per “Siddha Dharma”, Lord Shiva and Ma Parvati were in the midst of their conversation in agama-nigama, lord Shiva reveals to his consort that not everything and not every wisdom in this universe is empirical and revealed. There are some things and wisdom that are always kept secret and hidden. Ma Parvati becomes surprised and asks her lord as to why things are kept in secrecy and unrevealed, to which her lord replies that it is basically for two-fold purpose, the first is bliss and second is for beauty. He further explains to her that bliss is only attained when something portrays itself different from outside, while its inner essence is different from its outer portrayal. The beauty of anything lies hidden inside its secrecy because that which isn’t revealed is beauty. It is beautiful because the mind cannot take it for granted.
Lord Shiva continued saying that these beauties and bliss inherent in secrecy is known “Guhya Garbha Vidhya” and the presiding deity of it is Guheshwari Devi. She keeps the essence of everything inside her and doesn’t let it be known to the perceiver. She is the essence that hides in every perception or objective truth that is the dominant underlining in subjective truth. She is also known as “all secret hidden knowledge” because she doesn’t reveal it to everybody.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, goddess Parvati then says to her lord that even she realizes that not everything in this universe is manifested, some also lie unmanifested. Lord Shiva then replies that she is right up to the extent that there are some as manifested and some as unmanifested. But there are some which is also secretive and hidden. The presiding goddess of this secretive and hidden knowledge and wisdom is Parvati herself. Ma Parvati shockingly replies to lord Shiva as to how she could be the presiding deity of “guhya Vidhya”.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, lord Shiva then reminds Ma Parvati her last birth where she was Ma Sati and the incident of Daksha’s Yagya. This same wisdom with your different forms were imparted to you in that birth and you learnt it nicely but before its completion, you destroyed yourself with the yogagni. Lord Shiva continues saying that her death incident had a very strong impact on him because from the outer set, lord Shiva and Sati seemed two different bodies but essentially, they are one and same. The death of Sati had caused the death of the left side body of Shiva. He then became insane and through the impact of his Maya upon him, he carried the corpse of Sati and roamed around in this world in extreme pain and agony. It was suffering to the extreme. He had lost all his senses of cognition which caused a tremor in the physical world.
Lord Vishnu having sensed the gravity of the situation had to protect the creation so he took out his chakra (disc) and severed the body of Sati into 52 pieces and they feel in the ground scattered. Each piece of her body then turned into a “Shakti Peeth”. The guhya garbha part of Sati’s body feel in Kathmandu and there “Guhyeshwari Shakti Peeth” formally became established. This whole incident then establishes the guhya wisdom that was given to Sati by lord Shiva permanently in this universe and would be practised by rishi/munis and Siddhas soon.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, Ma Parvati was delighted hearing her past birth and her contribution to the spiritual world. She then asks lord Shiva to initiate her into the same “guhya wisdom” that she had received in her past birth which was incomplete. Lord Shiva then through his tantric power, initiated Ma Parvati into her wisdom of “Guhya Garbha Vidhya” and after she perfected this Vidhya, she formally assumed her role as Guhyeshwari Devi.
Philosophy of Guhya Garbha Vidhya
As per “Siddha Dharma”, Guhya Garbha Vidhya is a form of wisdom which keeps every other wisdom hidden inside her womb like a mother keeps her baby hidden inside. Only when the right time comes, the baby manifest into this physical world similarly the hidden crux of everything then becomes known to the public. For instance, the seed is tiny but the inherent capacity of the seed to become a tree is hidden. The essence of a seed is that one day it becomes a tree and then it multiplies into millions. That secret growth which is not visible to human cognition and intelligence prime facia is secretive wisdom or Guhya Vidhya. The tantric taps into that wisdom form and utilizes it for self-development.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, another analogy can also be taken into account and that is of ghee in milk. Ghee is the essence of milk but lies hidden inside milk. The only way to extract ghee from milk is to churn the buttermilk. From it, butter manifests and from butter, ghee is extracted. The ghee is highly of pragmatic use because homa or hawan are performed. Similarly, there are a lot of manifested and unmanifested things in this universe but inside them, remains the vital wisdom which when revealed clarifies everything. The clarification or clarity solves all the mysteries of the hidden phenomenon. All the secrets and mysteries are kept hidden by the goddess in her garbha or womb, therefore she is known as “Guhya Garbha Vidhya”.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, the importance of “Guhya Garbha Vidhya” is simply not about hiding and concealing beauties and bliss. The other aspect of keeping things secret is to protect the existence of that particular thing. Anything that has a value, creates demand. Demand would incur supply. Supply would mean the utilization of resources and slowly to the point of overutilization. Overutilization diminishes the resources. Therefore, the resources if kept hidden but only known to few shall save the exploitation of that resources. It also implies to wisdom forms and secretive knowledge because if that secret element of Vidhya is known, it would be exploited for gains. To safeguard things, secrecy is utmost needed. This is the essence of “Guhya Garbha Vidhya”. It is to safeguard that vital dot which when revealed connects all the dots.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, there are numerous other wisdom forms, matters, metaphysics, known or unknown entity and that secretive element lies hidden inside it. That secretive element cannot be known directly, there is an indirect process to decipher that connecting dot and that procedure or methodology is called “Guhya Garbha Vidhya”. Therefore, “Guhya Garbha Vidhya” is also called the traditional knowledge system of Guhyeshwari Devi.
Guhya Kali and Guhyeshwari
As per “Siddha Dharma”, Guhyeshwari Devi is the goddess who is the presiding deity of all guhya or secretive knowledge and wisdom system. She is an umbrella goddess for all guhya wisdom of the world and for all guhya deities. All guhya deities are her manifestation. The “Guhya Kali” goddess is also one of her own manifestations.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, in the “Guhya Kali Tantra”, it mentions that the universe was totally dark and infinite at the time of its creation. From that nothingness, the creation of manifested. That infinite darkness is also known as Guhya Kali. But nobody knows from where she manifested and how she manifested the universal creations. It is a total mystery in itself and plus, she is someone who doesn’t reveal herself to the people therefore, she is known as “Guhya Kali”. It is believed that Guhyeshwari Devi manifested in the form of Guhya Kali and caused the creation of the universe and kept her hidden from the universe.
Guhya Kula and Guhyeshwari Devi
As per “Siddha Dharma”, the “Guhya Garbha Vidhya” is the traditional knowledge system of Guhyeshwari Devi. This knowledge system explains all the secretive hidden essence of every wisdom form. Therefore, the Kula whose modus operandi is the “Guhya Garbha Vidhya” is also known as Guhya Kula.
As per “Siddha Dharma”, the Guhya Kula doesn’t have a particular kula of its own. All other kulas have a guhya section in them and that is what keeps guhya kula alive and vibrant. The guhya kula, therefore, is the collective guhya wisdom of all kulas and its own existence is based upon the guhya section of all kulas. The purpose of the guhya kula is to conceal all the secretive elements of all other kulas from being discovered easily and for safeguard against exploitation. It is also a system to study all the guhya systems of other kulas. It is also a shortcut way to decipher all the kulas easily.
Guhyeshwari Shaktipeeth in Nepal
As per “Kaula Siddha” dharma, the Guhyeshwari Shaktipeeth in Kathmandu, Nepal was officially established when the guhya garbha organ of Sati had fallen down. After the official establishment, this temple area was the hub for all guhya sadhanas of the universe. The great rishis/maharishis like Vishwamitra, Durvasa Rishi, Ne muni, eight four Siddhas, Mahasiddha Matsyendra Nath, Mahasiddha Goraksh Nath have performed their sadhanas. His Holiness Kaulantak Nath Ishaputra had visited this shaktipeeth in the year 2015 and performed a special sadhana. This shaktipeeth is a very pious land for all guhya sadhanas.
The temple premise is adjacent to the Pashupati Nath temple. The local folklore believes that Ne muni formally established Pashupati Nath temple and after many centuries, the local king who was anointed by Ne muni built the temple. The Guhyeshwari Shaktipeeth and Pashupati Nath temple are separated by the Bagmati river and “Mrigasthali forest”. The forest is also mentioned in various scripture and how it was the best dwelling place for lord Shiva and Ma Parvati.
The temple premise is in the bank of Bagmati river. The temple is very small. After entering the main temple, one has to take a few steps down to the idol. There is a small hole that is covered by a kalasha that is wrapped in gold and on top of the kalasha is an inverted triangle which implies shakti. The kalasha keeps the hole hidden. That hole is the entrance of the guhya garbha of Guhyeshwari Devi. Under the hole is the guhya garbha of Guhyeshwari Devi and nobody knows what is inside it.
The hole or the entrance of the Devi is encompassed by four petals which implies that it also denotes the Muladhara chakra because Muladhara chakra has four petals. Besides it, there is an idol of Shiva which is also covered with gold. This is the purely tantric temple because the two idols are surrounded by Ganesha. On the southern side, there is Kurma idol or tortoise idol which also implies guhya wisdom because the turtle is the dominant force of mooladhar chakra. On the western side of the idol, is the goddess Chinnamasta and adjacent to it are the Asta Matrikas.
The temple has no roof but is protected by a metallic cover and is surrounded by snakes and serpents. The purpose behind such style is that is modelled as per mooladhar chakra because it lies in the base of the spine and above the chakra is nothing but the infinite universe, therefore the temple has no roof. The temple premises in the northern side has two big monuments that is supported on the top of a turtle. A big pillar is supported on turtle’s back and is erect. On the top of the pillar, a lion is portrayed standing on its two legs which is also the symbol of goddess and her divine vehicle. The temple also falls under “Mrigasthali” forest which means the forest where deer dwells and deer itself denotes kundalini shakti.
List of Guhya Kula Deeksha imparted by Kaulantak Peeth
As per the records, there are currently three deekshas that have been imparted or are in the process of impartment based on guhya kula. The first is the “Shivatva Deeksha” which was held on January 1-3rd, 2012 at Kullu, Himachal Pradesh. The second is the “Hevajra Deeksha” which was held in the year 2019 and it is also known as “Guhya Kapali” Deeksha.
The next Deeksha is the Guhyeshwari Deeksha which is to held in the ending week of May 2020. This Deeksha is the biggest guhya Deeksha of “Guhya Kula” and would open the doors for future guhya Deeksha. There is also “Guhya Chandali Tantra” course which is to held in the ending month of June 2020, which is purely “Guhya Tantra” and falls under “Guhya Kula”.
Guhyeshwari tradition in Kaulantak Peeth
As per “Kaula Siddha Dharma”, the Guhyeshwari tradition of guhya kula tradition has been practiced from time immemorial even preceding the Guhyeshwari temple establishment. It had always been practiced under Shiva and Shakta traditions. Primarily, lord Shiva gave this knowledge to Shakti and from Ma Shakti, it was imparted to sapta rishi mandala and various Shiva Ganas like Mahasiddha Kapi Nath and Mahasiddha Shachindra Nath. Lord Narayan had received the knowledge from Shakti along with sapta rishis and infused it into the tradition of Kaula Siddha dharma. Ne muni is also believed to one of the most prominent personalities of guhya kula because his dwelling place in Nepal and most of his sadhanas were performed in the pious land of Nepal. He is also believed to have practiced guhya sadhana in the Guheswari Shaktipeeth.
As per “Kaula Siddha Dharma”, the modern-day revival of Guhyeshwari tradition is accredited to Mahasiddha Matsyendra Nath Ji. He descended down from the Himalaya after listening to all the guhya Vidya from Lord Shiva and Shakti. To preserve this secretive wisdom, he opened its door to the society. He played the bridge between lord Shiva agama-nigama wisdom and the common people. A lot of common people were initiated into guhya kula under his tutelage and the guhya kula worship system was revived in the society.