KALI is a name which plays upon the feminine forms of Sanskrit words meaning “darkness” and “time.” As a particular manifestation of the Great Goddess, she is strongly associated with the power of transformation—not merely in a cosmic sense, but in the personal lives of countless devotees who regard Her as the Divine Mother.
BHAKTI is perhaps most easily translated as the path of “loving devotion,” and refers to the manifold approaches of dedication to one’s patron deity. KALI BHAKTI therefore describes the path of loving devotion to goddess Kali. The name of this website not only defines its purpose, but reflects the unique path of Kali bhakti traversed by its creator, William Clark.
Here you will find original writings, photographs, and field recordings procured during my travels to India as I seek out different manifestations of the goddess who I regard as the central pivot of my existence. It is an ever-evolving work in progress and will continually expand as I dedicate my life to Kali through active research and overseas study.
The heart of this website is found in the section labeled SHAKTI PITHS. This portion of the website contains a growing list of specific entries dedicated to the vast network of Hindu goddess temples located throughout India and extending beyond its borders. Exploring these ancient “seats of power” has become a focal point for my personal devotion. While visiting these holy places for worship, I will take notes on everything I can learn about them from speaking with local residents and temple priests. When possible, I will also take numerous photographs and record audio at these places as well. A typical stay usually lasts about a week, but in some cases I have visited certain temples over the course of many years. Each of these places has an incredibly rich history, so these entries are by no means exhaustive. However, through my efforts, I hope to offer something of a glimpse into the magic and unique character found at each of them.
Tara Ma’s feet receiving offerings at Tarapith
It is with Kali’s blessing that this undertaking has come to pass. The boundless love I feel for my patron goddess has been a wellspring of inspiration for many years now. It is something that will surely continue to evolve, as it has been, for the rest of my life. However, this particular project would not have been possible without a lot of help from various people who have offered me their support over the years. I would like to mention the two most important of them here.
Julie Edelstein is an American religious scholar who currently resides in Madhurai, Tamil Nadu where she works as a teaching assistant of American students. It is largely thanks to her support and encouragement that this project has come to be. Writing is something I have hitherto avoided, but with her encouragement I have been able to surmount what I had previously thought of as an impossible hurdle. It would be impossible to thank her enough—without her support and encouragement this project would not exist. She has been an invaluable partner, whose assistance with research and editing has made it possible for me to express and share this journey of love.
Daniel Warwick is many things, foremost among them a video producer and web developer. He set up this website initially as a gift for me, trusting that I could transform it into something unique. I hope I have not let anyone down in this regard. His personal website can be found through the links section.
KALI IS LOVE — JAY MA KALI