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Yakṣiṇīs and Ceṭakas
At heart a Shakta, outwardly a Shaiva, in gatherings a Vaishnava, in thus many a guise the Kaulas wander on earth – Kaula Upanishad
The Indian tradition has a multitude of spirits occupying the three worlds. Many are the servants of Lord Shiva , and some have been pressed into the tantrik cause, as spirits which can, for example, solve all your financial problems or find that perfect lover.
Below are some examples. The ceṭakas appear in Tantrarājatantra, an encyclopaedic work of Śrī Vidyā. There is an English abstract in print, prepared by Sir John Woodroffe. However, Sir John plays down the multitude of magical operations contained in this work and in the commentary in print.
The yakṣas (male) and yakṣiṇīs (female) look after treasure hidden in the earth, and come under the dominion of the god Kubera.
The 64 Ceṭakas
These are servitors of Śiva, akin to elementals. Once drawn into service, they require nourishment. You have to keep this work force happy if you take them on.
They are (1) Amorous One (2) Vehicle (3) Heroic One (4) Separator (5) Angry One (6) Poet (7) Roaring like a Lion (8) Very Noisy (9) Beautiful Necked One (10) Ape (11) Deceitful One (12) Cat Eyed One (13) Dancing Cat (14) Boy (15) Bird (16) Originator (17) Peacock (18) Auspicious (19) Terrific (20) Tiger Faced (21) 6 Faced (22) Elephantine (23) Mover in the Night (24) Seizer of Poison (25) Lupine (26) Buffalo (27) Elephant Faced (28) Beast Face (29) Elephant Mouthed (30) Tremulous (31) Lucky Gemstone (32) Plaything (33) Lion Faced (34) Eagle (35) Heron Faced (36) Crow (37) Horse Faced(38) Great Bellied One (39) Big Bodied (40) Deformed (41) Beautiful (42) Restless (43) Cockerel (44) Sorcerer ( 45 ) Love’s Lassitude ( 46 ) Deluder (47) Long Shanked (48) Gross Toothed (49) 10 Faced One (50) Beauteous (51) Damager (52) Cruel One (53) Bear (54) One with Bristles (55) Fraud (56) Crooked One (57) God of Death (58) Servant (59) Cheat (60) Rogue (61) Devourer (62) Fear Inspirer (63) Accomplished One (64) One who goes Anywhere.
The 36 Yakṣiṇīs
A Yakṣiṇī is a species of supernatural entity, in some ways similar to a fairy. A Yakṣa is male, a Yakṣiṇī female. In the Uddamareshvara Tantra 36 of these beings are described, together with their mantras and ritual prescriptions. By soliciting their aid various powers are said to accrue to the devotee.
Uddamareshvara is a name of Lord Śiva and means “Lord of the Extraordinary”. His retinue consists of a host of disreputable beings, fiends, ghouls, &c. which he has forced into his service.
Yakṣa and Yakṣiṇīs are attendants or servitors of Lord Kubera, who has all the earth’s treasure within his domain. A similar list is given in the Tantrarāja Tantra. There it is said that they are givers of whatever is desired, each having two arms, fair bodies, wearing fine clothing of different hue, young and wanton, adorned with garlands of flowers, smeared with orpiment. Alternative mantras from this tantra are formed as follows: Hrim Shrim Nityadrave Mada …. (name of Yakṣiṇī) Shrim Hrim.
(1) Vichitra (The Lovely One): The mantra is to be inscribed on the bark of a fig tree, and should be recited 20,000 times. A sacrifice into a fire should be made of white flowers with wine and clarified butter. The mantra reads Om Vichitre Chitrarupini Me Siddhim Kuru Kuru Svaha. She bestows all desires.
(2) Vibhrama (Amorous One): The mantra should be written with dust from the cremation ground at night time. One should be naked. She should be worshipped with ghee, camphor and the mantra should be recited 20,000 times. Om Hrim Vibhrame Vibhramangarupe Vibhramam Kuru Rahim Rahim Bhagavati Svaha.
(3) Hamsi (Swan): The rite should be performed at the outskirts of a city. Lotus leaves and ghee should be used, and the mantra is to be recited 10,000 times. Om Drim Namo Hamsi Hamsavahini Klim Klim Svaha. She reveals the whereabouts of buried treasure, and grants an unguent with which one may see through solid objects.
(4) Bhishani (Terrifying): The ritual is to be performed at the junction of 3 paths. The mantra is to be recited 10,000 times. Camphor and ghee are to be used as the offering. Om Aim Drim Mahamode Bhishani Dram Dram Svaha.
(5) Janaranjika (Delighting Men): The mantra is to be recited at night 20,000 times under a Kadamba tree. Camphor, sandalwood and ghee are employed. Om Hrim Klim Janaranjike Svaha. She gives great good fortune and happiness.
(6) Vishala (Large Eyed): Inscribe the mantra on tamarind bark. Recite it 10,000 times. Offer 100 leaves, flowers and ghee. Om Aim Hrim Vishale Stram Strim Ehyehi Svaha. She gives the alchemical elixir.
(7) Madana (Lustful): Recite the mantra 10,000 times next to the gateway of a pure king. Offer with the sap from jasmine flowers. Om Hrim Madane Madanavidambini Alaye Sangamam Dehi Dehi Shrim Svaha. She gives a cure-all pill.
(8) Ghanta (Bell): Recite 20,000 times before a beautiful bell. Om Aim Drim Purim Kshobhaya Prajah Kshobhaya Bhagavati Gambhirasvapne Svapne Svaha. She gives the ability to enchant the world.
(9) Kalakarni (Ears Adorned with Kalas): Recite the mantra 10,000 times, offer 100 blades of grass together with wine. Om Hum Kalakarni Thah Thah Svaha. Success in recitation brings a shakti.
(10) Mahabhaya (Greatly Fearful): Seated on a pile of bones, do the ritual in a shmashana. Recite the mantra 10,000 times. Success brings protection from disease. Om Drim Mahabhaye Prem Svaha. She gives freedom from fear and the secret of alchemy, also freeing one from grey hair and signs of old age.
(11) Mahendri (Greatly Powerful): Success in the mantra means the person is able to fly and go anywhere. Perform it near a Tulsi plant when a rainbow is present. Om Hrim Mahendri Mantrasiddhim Kuru Kuru Kulu Kulu Hamsah Soham Svaha. One obtains Patala Siddhi.
(12) Shankhini ( Conch Girl ): Perform at sunrise, using Karavira flowers and ghee. Success brings fulfilment of any desire. Om Hrim Shankhadharini Shankhadharane Dram Drim Klim Shrim Svaha.
(13) Chandri (Moon Girl): Her sadhana is as (12) above.
(14) Shmashana (Cremation Ground Girl ): A pure person should recite her mantra 40,000 times in the shmashan. He or she should be completely naked, smeared with ash of the cremation ground. She gives treasure, destroys obstacles, and one is able to paralyse folk with a mere glance. Om Dram Drim Shmashana Vasini Svaha.
(15) Vatayakshini: The rite should be done at night, at the junction of 3 paths, next to a fig tree. She gives the secrets of alchemy, celestial gems and clothes. The mantra is to be recited 30,000 times. She also gives a divine and magical unguent. Om Shrim Drim Vatavasini Yakshakulaprasute Vatayakshini Ehyehi Svaha.
(16) Mekhala (Love Girdle): If the practitioner goes to the root of Madhuka tree in blossom on the 14th day of the lunar cycle, and pronounces her mantra, a magical unguent is obtained which accomplishes all. Om Drim Hum Madanamekhalayai Madanavidambanayai Namah Svaha.
(17) Vikala: Recite the mantra for 3 months. Be in a hidden place. She yields the desired fruit. Om Vikale Aim Hrim Shrim Klim Svaha.
(18) Lakshmi (Wealth): Make a fire in one’s own home, using red scented blossoms and reciting the mantra 10,000 times. She gives Lakshmi Siddhi, the secrets of alchemy, and heavenly treasure. Om Aim Hrim Shrim Lakshmi Kamaladharini Hamsah Soham Svaha.
(19) Malini ( Flower Girl ): Recite the mantra at a crossroads 10,000 times. She gives Khadga Siddhi, which means being able to stop any weapon. Om Drim Om Namo Malini Stri Ehyehi Sundari Hams Hamsi Samiham Me Sangabhaya Svaha.
(20) Shatapatrika ( 100 Flowers ): The mantra should be recited in a wood. A fire is to be made, and 100 blossoms cast therein. Om Drim Shatapatrike Dram Drim Shrim Svaha.
(21) Sulochana (Lovely Eyed): Recite 30,000 times on a riverbank. A fire is to be built, and ghee and other pleasant substances offered. This gives Paduka Siddhi, enabling one to travel at great speed through the aethers. Om Dram Klim Sulochane Siddhim me Dehi Dehi Svaha.
(22) Shobha: Wear red clothes. Repeat the mantra on the 14th day. The Devi gives the power of full enjoyment and the appearance of great beauty. Om Drim Ashoka Pallava Karatale Shobhane Shrim Kshah Svaha.
(23) Kapalini (Skull Girl): She gives Kapala Siddhi. Recite her mantra 20,000 times, offering boiled rice and various other pleasant foods. She gives the power to go anywhere in the aethers in one’s sleep, and also to go to any great distance away. Om Kapalini Dram Drim Klam Klim Klum Klaim Klaum Klah Hamsah Soham Sa Ka La Hrim Phat Svaha.
(24) Varayakshini: At a riverbank recite her mantra 50,000 times. A fire is to be lit and ghee and other fragrant things cast into it. Om Varayakshini Varayaksha vishalini Agaccha Agaccha Priyam me Bhavatu Haime Bhava Svaha.
(25) Nati (Actress): Having gone to the root of a fine Ashoka tree, make a circle using sandal oil. One is to be naked, pronouncing the mantra 1000 times, and offering the rasa to the yakshini. The worship is done at night. The Nati gives hidden treasure, an alchemical unguent, and the power of mantra yoga. Her mantra is Om Drim Nati Mahanati Rupavati Drim Svaha.
(26) Kameshvari: For a month the mantra is to be recited 3000 times at each twilight. Make a fire, cast into it flowers, incense, food &c. At midnight the Devi comes and has intercourse, and gives gems, clothes, secrets of alchemy and the alchemical substance itself. Om Hrim Agaccha Agaccha Kameshvari Svaha.
(27) (28) The text states these have already been described. (?)
(29) Manohara (Fascinating): On a beautiful pleasant river bank the mantrin is to make a circle using sandal oil. The mantra is to be pronounced 10,000 times. Om Hrim Sarvakamada Manohare Svaha.
(30) Pramoda (Fragrant): For one month rise at midnight, pronounce the mantra 1000 times. Om Hrim Pramodayai Svaha.
(31) Anuragini (Very Passionate): Using kumkum draw an image of a beautiful Devi on birch bark. Invoke the Devi therein, worshipping her with flame, incense, flowers &c. Then recite the mantra 1000 times. Do this for one month at the 3 twilights. At midnight She comes, showering the sadhaka daily with one thousand golden coins. Om Anuragini Maithunapriye Yakshakulaprasute Svaha.
(32) Nakhakeshi: Go naked and with dishevelled hair to the side of the house, and for 21 days do the worship at night. At midnight she comes, yielding her fruit. Om Hrim Nakhakeshike Svaha.
(33) Bhamini: Recite her mantra for 3 days whenever there is an eclipse from the period of contact to departure of the eclipse. She yields a very wonderful unguent. If smeared with this, then women are allured and one finds treasure. Om Hrim Yakshini Bhamini Ratipriye Svaha.
(34) Padmini is said to be included in (35) below.
(35) Svarnavati: Make a circle using sandal oil at the root of a fig tree. Offer food and so forth to the Yakshini. Recite the mantra every day for a lunar month. Recite the mantra 1000 times daily. Then she comes, giving Anjana Siddhi. Om Hrim Agaccha Agaccha Svarnavati Svaha.
(36) Ratipriya (Fond of Love): Make an image of a golden Devi on cloth, writing one’s own name inside. The image should be very alluring, covered in beautiful jewels. Offer red flowers, recite her mantra 1000 times for 7 days. The 25th day after the worship starts she comes at night. Om Hrim Ratipriye Svaha.
Artwork is © Jan Bailey, 1975-2022. Translations are © Mike Magee 1975-2022.Questions or comments to firstname.lastname@example.org