Occupy both sides of Mahavishnu. Bhudevi is Aparam Prakriti, the representation and totality of the material world or Vishnu’s energy or Mother Earth. Sridevi is Prakriti, the spiritual world. They are both one Lakshmi, the power of Mahavishnu, found on His chest, at the heart. Traditionally Lakshmi Puja is done by housewives.
Carries an interesting tale told during Lakshmi Puja connected with Lord Jagannatha. Once Shreeya, worshiped Lakshmi by observing Lakshmi Puja. She was not allowed into the temple. Mother was moved by her devotion and left Vimala temple, her permanent abode that is inside the campus of Lord Jagannatha Temple. She visited Shreeya's house to bless her.
This came to the knowledge of Lord Balabhadra, Jagannatha’s elder brother. Lakshmi was declared defiled and was not allowed to come back into the temple. Feeling hurt by this, Lakshmi went to her father, Sagara’s house and stayed there.
When Lakshmi went out of the temple, all wealth in the temple started vanishing. Over time, this left Balabhadra and Jagannatha not having food or sustaining themselves. They came out of the temple in the attire of Brahmin beggars in search of food. Soon enough, they ended in Sagara’s house seeking alms.
Mother Lakshmi comes out at the opportune moment. Balabhadra apologised for the mistake, and all of them returned to the temple. She agreed on condition that she will be given prasada before Lord Jagannata. The moral in this Puranic story is an admonition to pay regards to Mother Lakshmi for Her grace. Those disregarding are only paving their way to evil days ahead. It is also a warning to use and protect wealth properly. Misuse of wealth means sufferings to come.
Yogi Ananda Saraswathi