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Tara: She who illuminates of all attitudes

Ugra-Tara,Kangra, 18th century, © National Museum, Acc no: 82.463 (Ajit Mookerjee Collection)

Bija Mantra

om hrim strim hum phat

Om Maya, the perfection of the feminine, cut the ego purify!

Gayatri Mantra

Om tarave vidmahe maha ugrave dhimahi I

tanno tara pracodayat II

Om we mediate upon She who illuminates of all attitudes, contemplatte She who is fierce. May that Illuminator of all Attitudes grant us increase.


I meditate upon the Divine Mother of the three worlds, who is sitting on a white lotus situated in the centre of the waters enveloping the entire universe. In her left hands she holds a knife and a skull and, in her right hands, a sword and a blue lotus. Her complexion is blue, and she is be-decked with ornaments. . . . She is decorated with three beautiful serpents and has three red eyes. Her hair is bunched into a single plait of tawny colour. Her tongue is always moving, and her teeth and mouth appear terrible. She is wearing a tiger skin around her waist, and her forehead is decorated with ornaments of white bone. Sage Aksobhya, in the form of a serpent, is situated on her head. She is seated on the heart of a corpse, and her breasts are hard. Thus should one meditate on Bhagavati Tara, who is the mistress of all three worlds. – Mantra Mahadadhih

The post has been written by Rajeshwari Shah. Rajeshwari has a Masters in Art History and is interested deeply in Indian culture and religion with a special interest in Indian miniature paintings. She can be found on Instagram @rajeorchha

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