Daughters of Kali™
Daughters of Kali™ is a year-long practice and learning circle in the Sha'can tradition with emphasis on Tantra and the honoring of Kali Maa, our beloved Dark Mother. The circle is open to both women and men. Minimum age for participation is 18.The 6th Chakra of DoK, our 2008-2009 cohort, is now closed.
At SHARANYA, we approach Maa with a deep commitment to Her homeland, respect, reverence and honor for Her Indian advocates, and a dedication to the creation of the Sha'can tradition as an appropriate manifestation of our love for Her in the West. Originally birthed into consciousness in India, She is now arising in contexts outside of South Asia and is helping to create, inspire and evolve new forms of worship. SHARANYA and our tradition is dedicated to honoring Her appropriately and reverently here in the western world.
One's dedication on this path as a Daughter of Kali involves study of Hinduism, Tantrick practice, Sanskrit, and the Old Religion. It can lead to initiation into Her mysteries within the lineage tradition of Sha'can, a tradition that is informed by both Tantra and the Craft.
Welcome to our newest members!
Our first meeting will take place on September 28th, the day of our public puja, at 12:30pm.
NOTE: Initiation of our 2007-2008 circle of DoK took place on Friday, September 5th at 8:00pm. Jai Maa to Jaratura, Jayada, Sanatani, Sarasvati, Anangarekha, and Balipriya, with thanks to community and all who have supported their work!
DoK 2008-2009 Meetings:
Monthly, prior to public puja as per our calendar. All are welcome to attend public puja. (Those in DoK are required to assist with puja set up from 4:45 - 5:15pm and participate in the ceremony.) TIME: 12:30-4pm.
||A $40 donation is requested.
|| 2063 42nd Avenue (between Quintara & Pacheco) in San Francisco. Pujas are held at the Cultural Integration Fellowship, 3rd Avenue at Fulton in San Francisco. Click here for a map and transportation information.
|QUERIES & INFO:
||DoK@sharanya.org or 415-505-6840
If you're not in the Bay Area, please read further to find out about
how you can participate in our online program!
About the Program
Let this year-long course, which can lead to initiation, be your own mythic journey into and out of the underworld...let the Goddess of the
Crossroads take your hand and guide you into an unfolding awareness of
your Self as seen through Her eyes. These classes are powerful and
transformative, and for many, this path is a truly empowering,
life-affirming and life-changing experience. This is an opportunity
for you to come together with others to learn, laugh and live the
presence of the Divine.
Through Daughters of Kali one gains an understanding of Kali and the goddesses of the Tantrick path. At each meeting, we will work together using ritual, myth, lecture, readings, discussion and group work to deepen understanding of the Divine Female in historial, cultural and psycho-spiritual perspectives. In the spirit of the Sha'can tradition, classes require outside reading, participation and commitment. Come ready to engage the mysteries!
Daughters of Kali Program Outline
Baseline: (Months 1-3) These first months set the foundation for group work and individual practice. We establish the basics of the tradition and participants are introduced to ritual work with Kali Maa. An overview of philosophy, cosmology, and puja is provided. An introduction to the fundamental Tantric terms is offered and given context. Circle community building is essential (building trust, getting to know each other) during the first three months of our time together, as is making sure we're all on the same page regarding magickal or ritual work. Whether you come to DoK with a familiarity with ceremony (Hindu or otherwise) or not, everyone in DoK gradually comes to understand energy work as well as appropriate and respectful ways to approach Kali. Those in DoK also develop familiarity with traditional Tantric spiritual techniques and the evolving worship methods of the Sha'can tradition. Developing a relationship with one's mentor during this time helps facilitate the learning process and is strongly encouraged. Homework is also a component of all Daughters of Kali meetings, and while mandatory, there need be no stress around this part of the program. Homework is an opportunity to bring your creativity, curiosity, joy, and passion to the group. Required reading: Ajit Mookerjee's "Kali: The Feminine Force."
Explore & Interpret: (Months 4-6) Every meeting will have a formal teaching period as well as an experiential component. As you gain knowledge and facility with a variety of specific practices, you will naturally begin to reconcile and integrate your own spiritual background(s) and cultural upbringing with Sha'can and Maa as you feel Her in your heart. Our work together during this time will especially help this unfold into your own unique expression of devotion. Spiritual technologies derived from authentic Tantric sadhana (spiritual discipline) will deepen your connection to the Divine. To facilitate implementation of learnings, you will partner with group members to create your own teaching ceremonies around various cycles of Devi's energy: Creation, Preservation, Destruction & Transformation. Incorporating mantra, mudra, nyasa and yantra (as well as other learned tantrick techniques), you will engage your sensibilities and understanding within the group during these meetings. Required reading: Elizabeth Usha Harding's "Kali: Black Goddess of Dakshineswar."
Ritual, Practice & Devotion: (Months 7-9) During this phase of our gatherings, our work will become more focused on practices and devotional techniques as well as their implementation in ritual. This will include taking a leadership role of some sort (of your choice) during public pujas. Your individual psycho-spiritual growth and development on the path will inform how we integrate teachings and spiral them together in service to the group's objectives. Satyananda's "Kali Puja" will strongly guide our work during these months as we especially focus on memorization of mantras and delve more deeply into the sounds of Sanskrit.
Deepening & Initiation: (Months 10-12) The last phase of Daughters of Kali, which leads to initiation should one desire, intensifies the practices of Tantra and embodied experience. Specifically for those choosing to be initiated within the tradition, individuals are encouraged to enter into contemplation and meditation on the spiritual significance that this passage will have for them. Initiates carry a new name and receive a mantra as a sign of their commitment and devotion to the Divine Mother, as well as their willingness to work within the Sha'can tradition.
A list of FAQ and recommended reading for DoK may be found here.
In addition, the Daughters of Kali program teaches and supports those who wish to facilitate mentorship circles around rites of passage and coming of age for girls and boys. Click here to find out more!
For those wishing to join DoK for the 2009-2010 Chakra, please reserve your space in advance by phone or e-mail. All Daughters of Kali™ meetings run from 12:30 - 4:00pm and fall on the Sunday of our open community worship circle, our Kali Puja, which takes place at 5:30pm. All DoK members are expected to join in the preparations for our public pujas.
PLEASE NOTE that in order to join the Daughters of Kali group, you MUST attend a free open circle. Open circles take place in July and August. It is highly recommended that you also join us for one of our community puja ceremonies to better understand the nature of our celebration and devotional tradition. More information can be found on our calendar. If you cannot attend the information session due to a schedule conflict, yet feel that you still want to join the group, please contact us at DoK@sharanya.org and explain your situation. We look forward to hearing from you.
The recommended donation for each class is $40. No one is ever turned away for lack of funds and all donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent permissible by law. In lieu of a monetary contribution, those requiring financial assistance may donate their service to community. Assistance with our website, newsletter, public discussion forum, advertising and other endeavors are welcome. Donations benefit the ongoing work of SHARANYA and support our current initiatives and the establishment of a public goddess temple in San Francisco. All SHARANYA community members serve as volunteers in Her name. We are grateful for those who contribute so much to making the community viable, sustainable, and allow it to thrive!
You will be guided on this journey by Rashani Dr. Chandra Alexandre, founder
of SHARANYA, by current initiates, and by those who are also on the
journey with you.
For those of you not in the Bay Area, please stay tuned for our
unveiling of an online series of classes that you can work through
independently or with your current worship circle.
To register, or for additional details or specific questions, please contact us
About the teacher...
Ras. Chandra Alexandre (PhD, DMin, MBA) is the founder and executive
director of SHARANYA: The Maa Batakali Cultural Mission, Inc. A
long-time practitioner and Priestess of The Craft, Chandra received
her initial initiation into women's mysteries from her grandmother, a
lineage carrier in the Old Tradition. A native of New York, Chandra
was also a founding member of New Moon-New York and the first Editor
of Our Pagan Times. Chandra received her first diksha (initiation) into the Shakta tradition at a Kali temple in Puri, India from Shyam Sundar
Dash, a Priest of Kali, and continues to integrate East and West in
her practice through Sha'can. Click here to learn more!
Learn more about Sha'can, our tradition »
Learn more about SHARANYA: The Maa Batakali Cultural Mission, Inc. »
Learn more about the intricacies of temple etiquette and what some of our first Daughters of Kali wanted to know when they joined... »
You may also join our discussion forum for all those interested in the Dark Goddesses. This is a more general place to talk about Her mysteries. Come explore what it means to be one of the Daughters of Kali™ first-hand!