Goddess Mahakali Idol
As per the legends, Goddess Kali, becoming drunk on the blood of Her victims on the battlefield, dances with destructive frenzy. In her fury, She fails to see the body of Shiva, who lies among the corpses on the battlefield and steps on His chest. Realizing Shiva to lie beneath her feet, Her anger is pacified and She calms Her fury. The ‘Devi-Purana”, which goes into great depths about Goddess Kali, reveals the true reason for the symbolism of the tongue. The characteristic icons that depict Kali are the following; unbridled matted hair, open bloodshot eyes, open mouth and a drooping tongue; in her hands, she holds: a Khadga (bent sword or scimitar) and a demon head, and an enchanted Shiva lies beneath Her feet. Each of these icons represents a deep philosophical epithet. The drooping out-stuck tongue represents her blood-thirst. Lord Shiva beneath her feet represents matter, as Kali is undoubtedly the primeval energy. The depiction of Kali on Shiva shows that without energy, matter lies “dead”. In tantric contexts, the tongue is seen to denote the element (guna) of rajas (energy and action) controlled by sattva.