I am interested in Kali kavacha construction. In the Kali Kavacha from the Kali Puja book, before the phalashruti, it refers to writing the mantra using Kasturi, Chandana, and kumkum on bhojpatra.
When it says mantra what exactly is it referring to? Is it a part of the kavacha, the navarna, or some other mantra?”
The answer to your questions goes this way:-
“Kali Kavacha|| काली कवच ||”
Before you start, you first need to understand what does Kali means, and why or how we read this kavacham!
“Kala” also means time, and Kali means the One Who is Beyond Time. Kali is our Mother and the Mother of all the universes. With Her love we become unattached and free from action and reaction – we become a silent witness resting in universal delight.
Most often we recommend using the Mula Mantra to understand the energy of Wisdom: https://www.shreemaa.org/kali-japa-mantra-2/
Bhoj Patra is the bark of the Birch tree, which is used upon which to write the mantra with Kumkum. Fold the birch bark very thinly, and place inside a locket or amulet, along with a few grains of rice, some sandal paste, Kasturi, a leaf of Tulsi, a scented flower petal, and often some sesame seeds. Close the locket or seal the amulet with some candle wax, and place the Kavach upon the yantra in the puja.
Perform the Prana Pratishtha mantras and Japa, and after Visarjana at the end of the worship, the Kavach is ready to be worn. Place it upon the neck or right arm of the wearer with the Gayatri mantra, and the mala mantra which was written within. It grants protection as well as all the fruits expounded upon in verses 16-20 of the Kali Kavacham.
Benefits of Worshiping Mother Kali:-
When one can reside within, without identification or attachment to the ever-changing external influences, then the Supreme Truth can be realised. This is the path that Mother Kali shows us.
By spreading Her darkness over worldly desire, Kali makes seekers totally oblivious to the transient external elements. They then become totally contained the Self.
To worship Mother Kali, we perform Her puja, sing Her names, recite Her mantras, and remember Her in both times of ease and in times of difficulties.
- Kali Puja by Swami Satyananda Saraswati. This is also available as an iPad App.
- Thousand Names of Kali and The Songs of Ramprasad audio recordings sung by Shree Maa. These are overflowing with intoxicating devotion to Mother Kali.
- Kali Puja Video Class Series
- Podcast series of Kali Puja class in English with question/answer sessions available on the Podcast section of this website.