Chapter 1

Goddess of Dnyanadeva  in family tradition.

It searches for the tutelary goddess of Dnyanadeva’s family.

The author views such search as paradoxical. Dnyanadeva’s father was ostracized from the established social stratification, denying to  Dnyandeva and his siblings the social status within the  prevailing Varna- caste hierarchy which ought normally to have been their due as a birthright. Thus, they lacked an ‘official’ family lineage.

However, there could be two alternatives as regards the family goddess. It could be Mhalasa Mohini from Nevasa, or Bhagavati from Saptashrunga gad. In the essay the author has narrated instances : Dnyandeva’s reverential praise of Mohini from Nevasa. He notes, however, that owing to the fact that Dnyanadeva is known to have composed adulatory verse on several other deities beside Mohini, his praise of the latter  does not indicate  that uniqueness one might expect the  family goddess to be held.

The author cites verse written by Dnyandeva in praise of Bhagavati. Considering the evidence, the author feels Bhagavati could be his family goddess. However it is indicated that he did not actively continue with the goddess cult or Shakta cult although he accepted its philosophy.


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