Kali vs. Kali vs. Kalki

Kali vs. Kali vs. Kalki

It’s easy to get confused.  The Goddess Kali is pronounced with both vowels long: Kaaaaah-Leeeeee.   She is the fierce aspect of the goddess Durga, and in some cosmologies depicted as the wife or consort of the god, Shiva.   Her name means “Time” or “Death.” She is the Goddess of Time and Destruction, charged with devouring human sin and ego, fearsome mouthfuls, indeed.


The Goddess Kali


The Kali of the Kali Yuga is pronounced with both vowels short: Klih,  from the root verb kad, “to suffer, grieve, hurt; confound, confuse.”  This Kali is the King of Demons.  He is charged with bringing about the Apocalypse.  Kali Yuga means the “Age of Kali” also called the “Iron Age” or the “Last Age of Humankind.” It is the last of the four stages of the world as described in Sanskrit scripture.


Kali, Demon King of the Kali Yuga


The Demon Kali  is the reigning lord of the Kali Yuga and the archenemy of Kalki the 10th and final incarnation of the Hindu god Vishnu.


Kalki, the Incarnation of Lord Vishnu

It is said that towards the end of this Yuga, Lord Kalki will return riding on a white horse to do battle with the demon Kali. The world will suffer a fiery end that will destroy all evil . . . and a new age will begin.