Goddess of the Week: Santoshi

Cover art for the DVD release of the 1975 film...Image via Wikipedia

No doubt about it: We live in trying times. Worldwide recession. Rampant foreclosures. Increasing unemployment. And every time I go to the grocery store the cereal boxes look smaller and their prices creep higher. It's getting so I'll have to start eating my dandelion greens for breakfast.

If only there were a goddess to get us through such days....

Of course, there is. Say hello to Santoshi, the Hindu goddess of peace, patience, and prosperity. She is the daughter of Ganesh and, legend has it, if you pray to her faithfully for six days in a row your prayer will be answered.

While most goddesses date back thousands of years, Santoshi is not only a modern goddess, she is a Bollywood goddess. Her story was first told in the Indian movie Jal Santoshi Maa, a snippet of which appears here. Since that time, however, she has built up devoted followers in Northern India and Nepal. Surprising, yes, but when you think about it, haven't movies always made goddesses for us worship? For example:

Greta Garbo in 1932Image via Wikipedia

Marilyn MonroeImage via Wikipedia

Hannah Montana album coverImage via Wikipedia

Hmmm. I wonder if we are getting a bit uninspired?

The point is, we keep creating goddesses because we need to believe in them. Their temples may change, but their resonance does not.

Channel this goddess: when penny pinching leads to finger cramps; when your patience is as thread-bare as your ten-year-old sheets; when your only escape is a black any white celluloid beauty with moxie, spunk and great legs.

Christina: this goddess is for you.

Need a goddess: Tell me your desire, and I'll find the goddess to help you with it.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]



I actually remember her birth very clearly--I was a kid and suddenly, there were huge lines of people queuing up outside cinema houses (no multiplexes then)to welcome her becoming!
I've always told my American friends about the birth of this new goddess. I'm amazed that you found her and delighted that you wrote about her!
Ranee Kaur Banerjee

Unseen Rajasthan said...

Hi Margaret !! I appreciate this post..In India Goddesses Santoshi is being worshiped by Unmarried gals generally and it means "Satisfaction".One who worships her gets rid off every thing that troubles her..Thanks..Unseen Rajasthan

Margaret said...

Ranee and Unseen Rajasthan: Thanks for the additional information. I definitely defer to you wisdom.

Desiree said...

Only good things can come from a goddess like this--

Ellie said...

I love the idea of a Goddess of the Week! With the prediciment we are all in we can sure use the help. Do you have a place for us to find out more about the Goddess?

Margaret said...

Dez: Let's hope so.

Ellie: Thanks for the visit. When I am writing my goddess of the week feature, look at many sources, including good ol' Wikipedia. Wikipedia does have an entry on this goddess.

Lollie said...

Hi Margaret- Very delightful- I love your post! What do I need to do to get my own goddess? ;) I already have a hub-bub and have satisfaction in the marriage area...I've been reading your past blogs...there are so many good ones!

Tobias said...

That was fascinating! Its interesting to see a Goddess emerge from the modern day movie culture. They say that the divine manifests itself in different ways to different people/cultures, and I guess this is just the most modern version of that. Thanks for posting!

Anonymous said...

Was Ganesh holding back on us? No birth announcements, parades, media frenzy or pink balloons on the curb.
I'm a little disappointed with Ganesh considering he's the only god I'd ever consider having inked on me

Anonymous said...


Ellie said...

Margaret, If Marilyn Monroe were a goddess what would she be goddess of? I always loved Marilyn, she had a inocent quality about her that drew me to her.

Margaret said...

Lollie: To get your own goddess, all I need is a general theme. You sound like you have a lot that you're grateful for. Should I find you a goddess of gratitude?

Tobias: Your comment is so well said. It is fascinating, isn't it? Thanks for the visit.

PA: Of course I remember! And as for Ganesh, he wasn't holding out. When the blessed event arrived he made a splash with by putting it on the big screen.

Ellie: I'm thinking a modern Aphrodite. What do you think?

Joanne said...

Hm, I like that, a Goddess of peace, patience and prosperity. It feels like it's a way of giving hope a face.

Ellie said...

Wow! Totally! Marilyn is definately a modern day Aphordite. A rough begining, misunderstood, without a childhood and only seen for her beauty. I think I'm begining to see how to match our current heros and heroines with the gods of old.


Margaret, thanks for the reciprocal visit. I love what you're doing here and am now a follower!


Petrea said...

Six days, starting tomorrow. Santoshi's for me. She must be, because my WV is "sante."

Jean Spitzer said...

Bollywood movies provide plenty of everything, but I wasn't aware that one had successfully launched a goddess. Fascinating.

Shell Sherree said...

{Wow, Petrea, that must be a sign!} Hard to go wrong with a little Santoshi in one's corner. Thanks, Margaret!

Laila Of Course! said...

Yes, I DO agree with you that the goddesses created on film now are becoming less and less inspired. It's quite horrible, really. ANd noo, I'm not a fan of Hannah Montana. She annoys me. :)

Be sure and pop by! I'm having a bit of a go at a photo caption contest. So be sure and enter!


JennyMac said...

I would love to be influenced by any Goddess of Patience!

Margaret said...

Jenny: I'm with you. Patients is in short supply these days, at least at my house. Thanks for the visit.

Anonymous said...