12 Forms of Kali Maa

Unlocking the Mysteries of the 12 Forms of Kali: Discovering Her Many Faces


Goddess Kali, a significant deity in Hindu mythology, is often misunderstood due to her fierce appearance. However, she is much more than just a goddess of destruction. Kali embodies the concept of universal power, time, life, and death. This blog aims to delve into the 12 forms of Goddess Kali, each unique in its symbolism and significance.

The 12 Forms of Kali

Adya Kali

Significance and Rituals: Adya Kali, one of the Dasha Mahavidyas, is worshipped fervently, especially in West Bengal. She represents the primal power and is considered the ultimate form of divinity in Hindu religion.

Connection to Other Goddesses: Adya Kali is often associated with other goddesses like Durga, Parvati, and Kali, symbolizing the interconnectedness of these divine forms.

Matangi Kali

Significance and Rituals: Matangi Kali is the ferocious form of Saraswati, the Goddess of Knowledge. She exists at the fringes of organized Hindu religion and is often given offerings of stale food.

Connection to Other Goddesses: Known by the name Chandalini, Matangi Kali is rarely worshipped at home but holds a significant place in tantric practices.

Chhinnamasta Kali

Significance and Rituals: This form of Kali is perhaps the most shocking, as she is depicted with a decapitated head. The flowing blood from her neck is consumed by her own severed head.
Connection to Other Goddesses: Chhinnamasta Kali represents the cycle of life and death, symbolizing both creation and destruction.

Shamsana Kali

Significance and Rituals: Shamsana Kali oversees activities at the crematorium and is worshipped only within these sacred grounds.
Connection to Other Goddesses: Unlike other forms, Shamsana Kali is depicted with only two hands and no protruding tongue, making her an extremely human projection.

Bagala Kali

Significance and Rituals: Bagala Kali is a violent form of the goddess, yet her beauty is unparalleled. She is often shown pulling out the tongues of demons.
Connection to Other Goddesses: This form of Kali represents the fierce power of the goddess, capable of both creation and destruction.

Dakshina Kali

Significance and Rituals: Dakshina Kali is the most popular form of Kali in Bengal. She is considered the mother of mercy and is believed to protect her devotees from accidents and misfortunes.

Connection to Other Goddesses: It is said that even Yama, the god of death, fears her name, signifying her power over life and death.

Bhairavi Kali

Significance and Rituals: Bhairavi Kali is often described as the harbinger of death but is also seen as a protective mother.

Connection to Other Goddesses: The main temple for Bhairavi Kali worship is located in Tripura, adding regional significance to this form.

Tara Kali

Significance and Rituals: Tara Kali is unique for her light blue skin and is often depicted covered in a tiger's skin.

Connection to Other Goddesses: This form of Kali represents the fierce yet protective nature of the goddess.

Shodoshi Kali

Significance and Rituals: Shodoshi Kali is depicted as a seductress and is considered a young girl emerging from naivety.

Connection to Other Goddesses: This form of Kali represents the transformative power of the goddess, capable of leading her devotees to enlightenment.

Kamala Kali

Significance and Rituals: Kamala Kali is an incarnation of Lakshmi, the goddess of prosperity and wealth.

Connection to Other Goddesses: This form of Kali is often accompanied by two elephants, symbolizing her grandeur and majesty.

Guhya Kali

Significance and Rituals: Guhya Kali represents the hidden female energy and is closely associated with tantric practices.

Connection to Other Goddesses: This form of Kali is often referred to as Kaleshwari and is considered the wife of Kaleshwar.

Dhumavati Kali

Significance and Rituals: Dhumavati Kali is unique as she is the only widowed goddess in Hindu mythology.

Connection to Other Goddesses: She is often referred to as the "Smoke Goddess" and represents the darker aspects of life.

Benefits and Features of the 12 Forms of Kali

Understanding and worshipping the 12 forms of Kali can bring about transformation and empowerment in one's life. Each form offers different blessings and energies, allowing devotees to connect with universal power and embrace both life and death.


The 12 forms of Kali are not just mythological figures but represent the various facets of life and the universe. By understanding these forms, one can embark on a spiritual journey to attain wisdom, power, and ultimately, liberation.

Back to blog

About Goddess Kali Hindu

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is Goddess Kali evil?

No, Goddess Kali is not evil. She is often misunderstood due to her fierce appearance, but she is a symbol of liberation, protection, and transformation.

Why is Goddess Kali's tongue out?

The depiction of Goddess Kali with her tongue out is tied to the story where she steps on Lord Shiva in a fit of rage and then sticks out her tongue in embarrassment and realization.

Why is Maa Kali black?

The color black is symbolic of absorption and transformation. Maa Kali being black signifies her all-encompassing nature and her ability to absorb all colors, symbolizing ultimate reality.

Can we keep Goddess Kali at home?

Yes, you can keep a Goddess Kali statue or image at home, especially if you are drawn to her energy. However, it's advisable to do prana pratishta of the statue by Hindu priest to properly install maa kali into home temple/ sacred altar place.

How to worship Goddess Kali at home?

Worshipping Goddess Kali at home can be done through various rituals, including lighting a lamp, offering flowers, blood and chanting Goddess Kali mantras. It's always best to consult with your Hindu priest for specific guidelines on Pooja as per your desires and Wishes.

What is the Goddess Kali chant?

The most Popular chant for Goddess Kali is the Kali Beej Mantra:

"Kreem Kreem Kreem Hreem Hreem Hoom Hoom Dakshine Kalike Kreem Kreem Kreem Hreem Hreem Hoom Hoom Swaha."

It is believed to bring closeness to Kali and is often used in various rituals.

When is Kali Yuga?

Kali Yuga is the current epoch in Hindu cosmology, often associated with decline in dharma (righteousness) and increase in adharma (unrighteousness). It is not directly related to Goddess Kali, despite the similarity in names.