Goddess Lakshmi is considered as the goddess of wealth, prosperity, and abundance in Hinduism.

Goddess Lakshmi is considered as the goddess of wealth, prosperity, and abundance in Hinduism. She is one of the most popular and revered deities in Hinduism and is worshipped in various forms and avatars. The word 'Lakshmi' is derived from the Sanskrit word 'Lakshya' which means goal or aim. She is also known as Shri or Shree, which means auspiciousness, or beauty.

The worship of goddess Lakshmi is considered to bring financial stability, prosperity, and success in all areas of life. She is also believed to bring good luck, good fortune, and happiness. In Hinduism, the goddess Lakshmi is associated with many aspects of life such as fertility, beauty, and power.

There are as many ways of performing a Lakshmi Puja, as there are avatars or facets of the Goddess. In Telangana, the Vaibhava Lakshmi Vrat and puja is popular, whereas across the south, Varalakshmi Vratam is performed with festive vigour. Lakshmi Kuber Puja is performed all over India on the day before Diwali. 

There are various avatars of goddess Lakshmi in Hinduism mainly 8 or Ashta Lakshmi, each representing a different aspect of wealth and prosperity. Some of the most commonly worshipped avatars of Lakshmi are: 

  • Dhana Lakshmi - represents wealth and prosperity
  • Gaja Lakshmi - represents power, authority, and royalty
  • Veera Lakshmi - represents courage and bravery
  • Santana Lakshmi - represents fertility and motherhood
  • Adi Lakshmi - represents the ultimate source of all wealth and prosperity

Most often pujas are performed to Goddess Lakshmi in general, although sometimes a specific avatar of Lakshmi is invoked to receive specific benefits. For example, worshipping Gaja Lakshmi is believed to bring political power and success, while Santana Lakshmi is worshipped for the well-being of children and a prosperous family life.

Despite specific ‘boons’ to be had, the main benefits of worshipping Goddess Lakshmi include financial stability, success in business, good health, spiritual growth, and overall prosperity. Devotees believe that by worshipping goddess Lakshmi with devotion, they can receive her blessings and attain financial stability, prosperity, and success in all aspects of life. Almost everywhere, the colour yellow is associated with Goddess Lakshmi, so the puja mantap is usually decorated with a yellow cloth.

The procedure and items required for conducting a Lakshmi puja vary depending on specific customs, family traditions and local regions, but here are some common items that are typically used:

  • An area decorated with rangoli, banana leaves, flowers and clean cloth to place the idol or picture of the goddess
  • Flowers, betel leaves for offering to the goddess
  • Fruits, sweets, and other food items for offering to the goddess
  • Camphor, ghee, and oil lamps for lighting
  • Incense sticks and dhoop for offering fragrances
  • A bell for invoking the goddess and marking the beginning of the pooja
  • Turmeric, kumkum, and other materials for performing the aarti and applying tilak on the forehead
  • Coconut, rice, and other grains for offering to the goddess
  • Silver coins for performing archana 
  • A pooja plate to hold all the items used in the pooja
  • Lastly and importantly a kalash to invoke Lakshmi in.

It's important to note that the items used in the pooja should be clean and fresh, and the devotee should perform the pooja with a pure heart and mind, focusing on devotion and gratitude towards the goddess.

Several books are available to guide on the methods of observing fasts and performing pujas.  Ladies from Andra and Telangana ensure books on Vaibhava Lakshmi Vrat are included along with various return gifts that signify good fortune.