Santoṣī Mā(tā)

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A North Indian goddess, apparently hardly known before the 1960s, who has achieved widespread popularity thanks to the box office success of a Hindi film, Jai Santoṣī Mā (‘Hail Santoṣī Mā) (1975; remade 2006), which, in telling the story of a young woman's devotion to her, identified Santoṣī as the daughter of Gaṇeśa. Regarded as manifesting herself in the film (or on the screen during its projection), she has since become the focus of a bhakti cult, particularly among middle-class urban women. Numerous temples have been dedicated to her.

Subjects: Hinduism.

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