Manasa Devi is Goddess from India. She is believed to be the daughter of Lord Shiva. The story of Her birth starts when Lord Shiva was sexually aroused on the banks of the Kalidaha pool, a pond in West Bengal in the town called Rajnagar. It is dedicated to goddess Kali. Neta Devi is Manasa Devi's sister. Lord Shiva sent these two Goddesses down to the underground where the Nagas, the snake beings, live. Hindus worship the Nagas every year during the great festival of the Nagas called Naga Panchami (the five Nagas are worshipped on Nag Panchami).
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Neta is tightly related to Manasa and both these (snake) Goddesses are mentioned in a few Indian Puranas and other sources. These goddesses are both related to a woman known as Behula. Behula was an archetypal Bengali woman full of love. She was the daughter-in-law of Chand Saudagar (a rich merchant) who denied worshiping Manasa Devi. According to an Indian myth, two beautiful apsaras, Usha and Aniruddha, were tricked by Manasa Devi and Neta Devi, and these two apsaras thus went to earth to be born as mortals - one as the Chand's seventh son Lakhinder and the other one as his (Lakhinder's) wife Behula. With their tricky plan they (Manasa and Neta) already made the six Chand's sons die of snakebite (because he refused to worship them).
The symbol of Manasa is the sun rising over the half moon, but the half moon with the sun wedged into the half moon (not separated from it) - the symbol that looks exactly like an eye (you may see it in temples in India and in other places where Manasa has Her devotees). She is often called "the one-eyed goddess", as Parvati burned one of Her eyes. The Sanskrit word "manasa" means "spiritual", but it is also tightly related to the word Manasarovar (derived from two words: "mana" and "sarovara" - lake, but also the name Manasa Sarovara is used), the lake at the foot of Mt Kailash, the holiest mountain of Shaivism, Bön religion, and Buddhism.
Manasa is mentioned in the Puranas and also in the Manasamangal Kavya - the poem that belongs to Mangal-Kavya, a group of Bengali (Hindu) religious texts (poems) composed sometimes after the 12th century and later. Manasamangal Kavya is the oldest of them. Some texts dedicated to celebration of Manasa Devi are also taken from the Brahma Vaivarta Purana, the origin of which is tightly associated with the region of Bengal (where the worship of Manasa Devi is the strongest in India). The relevant texts are taken from the second part of the Brahma Vaivarta Purana called Prakriti khanda, which deals with goddesses (Shaktis - the manifestations of Prakriti, the basic nature of intelligence on which the universe stands; Prakriti khanda celebrates the greatness of Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswati and Savitri in the creation of the world). These texts are used also for purposes of celebrating Manasa Devi. During the Manasa puja ceremony, people bath the statues of Manasa Devi with milk and recite the hymns taken from Prakriti khanda. Poems that people dedicated to Manasa Devi are known as Manasa Mangal in Bengal
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