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    "Kanya" is a term derived from Sanskrit language, referring to the girl children who have not obtained 'Puberty'. It is believed in Hindu religion that goddess Devi is with such girls till they attain puberty.

    'Devi is essentially a worship of the great feminine. In a kanya the great feminine potential is at its peak. Having developed into a girl of a certain age and before attaining puberty, a female child is considered the most auspicious, most jagrat, and the most clear minded and clear soled individual.

    A Hindu spiritual aspirant sees the universal consciousness manifested in an innocent child.

    Hindu scriptures like the J˝anarnava Rudrayamala tantra assign different names to a Kumari depending on her age.
    A one year-old girl is called Sandhya,
    a two year-old girl is called Sarasvati,
    a child of three years of age is called Tridhamurti,
    on her fourth year she is Kalika,
    on fifth she is Subhaga,
    on sixth she is Uma,
    on her seventh year she is called Malini.
    an eight year girl is called Kubjika,
    on the ninth year she is Kaalasandarbha,
    on reaching tenth year she is Aparajita,
    on eleventh she is Rudrani,
    on twelfth year she is named Bhairavi,
    on thirteenth she is Mahalakshmi,
    on fourteenth she is Pithanayika,
    on fifteenth she is Kshetragya, and
    on sixteenth years of her age she is Ambika.

    In India, Kumaris are worshiped only for a day and these names are assigned only while the ritual lasts, usually a few hours. Usually one cannot be a KANYA beyond sixteen years of age due to menarche.

    The worship of the goddess in a young girl represents the worship of divine consciousness spread all over the creation.
    Last edited by Padmanabhan.J; 25-01-13, 12:05.