Bala, the young girl of 16
One of the most popular representations of the Great Cosmic Power Tripura Sundari is in the form of a sixteen year old young girl. This anthropomorphic vision of the goddess is known as Shodasi (which means “sixteen”) or that of Bala (meaning – young girl). The age of sixteen is not accidentally chosen in this form of Sundari, because that is when a woman experiences maybe the most enjoyable and fascinating, full of happiness and delight aspects of her existence. At this stage of life, her deep inner impulse is to always play, to experience newer and newer sensations and to fascinate the others, exerting on them an intense power of attraction. This is why they say that her pure innocence disarms even the darkest souls, being like a powerful magnet for everything that resonates with truth, beauty and goodness. Thus, as a forever young and lovely girl of sixteen, Shodasi guides the aspirant with a lot of discernment on the path of spirituality, representing for him the purity and innocence full fervor of his aspiration to the Divine, a state that he must continually cultivate from the beginning of his practice to the acquirement of supreme spiritual liberation (moksha).
Here is how Bala Tripura Sundari can be perceived through meditation by an aspirant to perfection: a first sensation appears right at the base of the spine as a fine ethereal vibration, like a lotus flower stalk that ascends to the top of the head where it opens its great flower emanating a vivid, intense, brilliant white light out of which the extraordinary form of the Goddess of Beauty appears. She wears her hair plaited with garlands of flowers; her forehead is adorned with jewels, her lips outline a slight smile and she wears a beautiful tiara on her head. Her head is adorned with pearls and diamonds, wearing a crescent moon as a precious jewel. Her three bright eyes shine like sapphire; with shining pearl earrings made of dazzling jewels in the ears; around her neck she has a beautiful and amazing necklace like a swarm of bees. Her body is covered with fine bright beautiful clothing, revealing her graceful arms and twisting forms, all covered with gold and other precious metals, bright and shiny jewelry; her whole being emanates a sweet fragrance like grape seeds; her toes are like petals of red lotus, adorned with pearls like flower buds. In her first left hand held down she holds a book and with the first raised right hand she makes the gesture of removing fear; in the second right hand down she holds some praying beads and with the second left hand she makes the gesture of blessing.
The Great Cosmic Power Tripura Sundari Bala is assigned 1,000 names, as shown in the tantric tradition. This lovely feminine manifestation full of tenderness and passion, shows herself in multiple forms, each more charming and more amazing than the other, only to the aspirant full of devotion and fervor: the Ocean of the Ultimate Happiness; The Blissful; the Queen; the Empress, the Irresistible Shakti, the One with the face like the Moon; the Essence of Passion; the Adorable One that Grants Passion; the Golden Vessel; the One Shining like a million suns; the Lovely Goddess of Love; Little Moon; The One in love with Shiva; the Cosmic Dancer; the Goddess of the Awakened Intelligence; Goddess of the Three Cities; the Adolescent One; the Passionate One; the One that plays with the arrows of love; the One who fulfills the aspirants’ desires; The One Eternally inlove etc.