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Lakshmi has a history from early scriptures and eventually became Vishnu's consort in the Puranic period. She seems to have become subservient to Vishnu after that. So much so that one of the sub-sects of Iyengar Vaishnavites regards her as a Jivatma, if I am not mistaken.

http://advaitham.org/who-is-mahalakshmi

this site says 'Mahalakshmi is the supreme Deity Who is also known as Tripura Sundari or Sri Vidya or Lalithambika or Lalitha. Mahalakshmi is the confluence of Lakshmi (satvic), Saraswathi (rajasik) and Kali (tamasik) powers. Here, the term “Maha” is not an adjective used for the noun “Lakshmi”.'

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    It might be the difference between Vishnu and Maha Vishnu.
    – user9072
    Commented Feb 11, 2018 at 19:06
  • I don't believe "Mahalakshmi" occurs much in Vaishnavite scripture @Arkaprabha Majumdar
    – S K
    Commented Feb 11, 2018 at 19:21
  • That's what I said it "might" be. Maha Lakshmi or Mahamaya
    – user9072
    Commented Feb 11, 2018 at 19:53

5 Answers 5

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You can from here read the Mahalakshmi Ashtakam (Ashatakam is a Stotra composed of 8 verses) which is of course dedicated to Goddess Mahalakshmi. The Stotram was said by Devaraja Indra and is found in the Padma Purana:

नमस्तेऽस्तु महामाये श्रीपीठे सुरपूजिते ।
शङ्खचक्रगदाहस्ते महालक्ष्मि नमोऽस्तुते ॥१॥

Namastestu Mahaa-Maaye Shrii-Piitthe Sura-Puujite |
Shangkha-Cakra-Gadaa-Haste Mahaalakssmi Namostute ||1||

Meaning: 1.1: I Worshipfully Salute Devi Mahalakshmi, Who is the Mahamaya (the Primordial Cause of Creation); And Who is Worshipped in Sri Pitha (Her Abode) by the Suras. 1.2: (I Worshipfully Salute Her) Who is adorned in Her Beautiful Form with Shankha (Conch), Chakra (Disc) and Gada (Mace) in Her Hands; I Worshipfully Salute Devi Mahalakshmi.

But this clearly is the depiction of Sri Lakshmi and not that of the Supreme Goddess Sri Lalita Tripurasundari.

The next verse of the Stotra makes things even more clear:

नमस्ते गरुडारूढे कोलासुरभयंकरि ।
सर्वपापहरे देवि महालक्ष्मि नमोऽस्तुते ॥२॥

Namaste Garudda-[A]aruuddhe Kola-[A]asura-Bhayangkari |
Sarva-Paapa-Hare Devi Mahaalakssmi Namostute ||2||

Meaning:

2.1: I Worshipfully Salute Devi Mahalakshmi Who is mounted on the Garuda, and Who is the Terror to Kolasura, 2.2: (I Worshipfully Salute) the Devi Who Removes All Sins (when we Surrender to Her); I Worshipfully Salute Devi Mahalakshmi.

As regards, the supreme Goddess Lalita, then she does not ride the Garuda and we find from the Lalita Trishati of the Brahmanda Purana:

Lagna Chaamara Hastha Shri Sharada Parivijitha
Lakshmi and Sharada (or Sarswati) serve you with Chaamara as a hand fan;

And, this is depicted in the following image of the supreme Goddess:

enter image description here

Also, it is a common practice to add Maha before a deity's name, it does not change the deity itself.

For example, this page describes a Ganesha Puja. But while invoking the deity the Mantra being used is Mahaganapatim Dhyami Avahayami

Similarly, this page describes a Vishnu Puja, but the invocation uses the Mantra Mahavishnum Dhyami Avahayami

Therefore, Lakshmi and Mahalakshmi both refer to the same deity. And Lalita is of course the supreme Goddess and is a different deity.

EDIT:

As requested by user SK.. updating the answer.

The following passage from the Devi Bhagavatam (DB) proves that the supreme Devi is the combined form of Mahalakshmi, Mahasaraswati and Mahakali. So, Mahalakshmi is immediately ruled out by this from being the supreme Goddess.

S’iva is beyond Prâkritic attributes, eternal and ever omnipresent; She is without any change, immutable, unattainable but by yoga; She is the refuge of the universe and Her nature is Turîya Chaitanya. Mahâ Lakshmi is Her Sattvikî S’akti; Sarasvati is Her Râjasik S’akti and Mahâ Kâlî is Her Tâmasik S’akti; these are all of feminine forms. 21-25. The assuming of bodies by these three S’aktis for the creation of this universe is denominated as "Sarga" (creation) by the high souled persona (Mahârpurusa), skilled in S’astras. And the further resolution of these three S’aktis into Brahmâ, Visnu and Mahes'a for the creation, preservation, and destruction of this universe is denominated (in this Purâna) as Pratisarga (secondary ereation.

DB Book 1, Chapter 2.

The same can also be proved by using Sri Chandi (from the Markandeya Purana) as the reference.

Further references, that prove that Lakshmi and Mahalakshmi are not different deities and that she indeed is the consort of Lord Vishnu are given below:

20-22. Janamejaya said :-- “O Bhagavân! In olden times, the World mother Parâ S’akti handed over Gaurî to Hara, Laksmî to Hari, and Sarasvatî to Brahmâ, born of the lotus from the navel of Hari. Now I hear that Gaurî is the daughter of Himâlayâ as well of Daksa; and Mahâ Laksmî is the daughter of the Ksiroda ocean (ocean of milk). They were all originated from the Prime Devî;

DB Book 7, Chapter 29.


This very beautiful Laksmi Devî is the complete master of the senses; She is of a very peaceful temper, of good mood and all-auspicious. She is free from greed, delusion, lust, anger, vanity and egoism. She is devoted to Her husband and to Her Bhaktas; Her words are very sweet and She is very dear to Her husband, indeed, the Life and Soul of Him. This Devî is residing in all the grains and vegetables and so She is the Source of Life of all the beings. She is residing in Vaikuntha as Mahâ Laksmî, chaste and always in the service of Her husband. She is the Heavenly Laksmî, residing in the Heavens and the royal Laksmî in palaces and the Griha Laksmî in the several families of several householders.

DB Book 9, Chapter 1.

Do you need more proofs? Anywways, why Lakshmi is called Mahalakshmi is given in the same Purana:

The two-armed person first made over to Mahâ Laksmî the four armed One; then the two armed Person Himself took Râdhâ. Laksmî looks on the whole universe with a cooling eye; hence She is named Laksmî and as She is great, She is called Mahâ Laksmî. And for that reason the Lord of Râdhâ is two-armed and the Lord of Laksmî is four-armed.

DB Book 9, Chapter 39

And, here the two-armed person being referred to is Narayana or Lord Vishnu.

1-2. Nârada said :-- “O Lord! How did the eternal Devî Mahâ Laksmî the dweller in Vaikuntha, the beloved of Nârâyana, the Presiding Deity of Vaikuntha, come down to the earth and how She, became the daughter of the ocean? By whom was She first praised? Kindly describe all these in detail to me and oblige.”

Book 9, Chapter 40.

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  • you have not given any citation that Mahalakshmi is vishnu's spouse @rickross
    – S K
    Commented Feb 12, 2018 at 12:31
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    And for that you will downvote? it was simply needed to prove that Lakshmi and Mahalkshmi are just one deity..and i did that..if Supreme Goddess Lalita were to be Mahalakshmi then her consort would have been Kameswara or Sadashiva.. anyways updating the answer for proving that the sun rises from the east..@SK
    – Rickross
    Commented Feb 12, 2018 at 13:19
  • if mahalakshmi is never called spouse of Vishnu then obviously she is not lakshmi the demure lady sitting at vishnu's feet.
    – S K
    Commented Feb 12, 2018 at 13:31
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    just an intuition that vaishnavite theology cannot allow a pwerful goddess; take a look at en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mahalakshmi_Temple,_Kolhapur @rickross
    – S K
    Commented Feb 12, 2018 at 23:41
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    Hindu scripture is a chaotic mess. Lakshmi is largely a "bharatiya nari" - submissive to her husband. She may also be called "mahalakshmi". Supreme goddess Lalita may also be called "Mahalakshmi," This profligacy with names is the basis of "vishnu-paratvam" argument by vaishnavites - if Rudra does something good, that Rudra is Vishnu - but if he is depicted in a poor light (like the crying baby rudra) then he is plain old rudra @rickross
    – S K
    Commented Feb 17, 2018 at 20:21
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According to āchārya Abhinavgupta, Lakshmi & Mahalakshmi are different at least in human body. Lakshmi is the goddess of wealth but Mahālakshmi is the embodiment of sense of smell.

I bow to Lakshmi, goddess of wealth, who is fond of perfume & all good scents & who is situated in the abode of Ishāna (northeast). To Mahālakshmi, who embodies the sense of smell & who worship Bhairavnath with various perfumes & scents I eternally bow. Verse 13 Dehasta-devata-cakra Strotra

Credit - Abhinavgupta.net

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The name Mahalakshmi could either refer to the Consort of Lord Vishnu, or to Lalita Tripura Sundari, or to MahisaMardini Durga (Chandika), or to Matrika Devi, or to some specific form of Devi also.

Mahalakshmi as the consort of Lord Vishnu:

Consort of Lord Vishnu who always resides with Lord Vishnu is also known by the name Mahalakshmi. For example Padma Purana describes her as:

गृहीतशंखचक्राभ्यामुद्बाहुभ्यां विराजितः ३८। वरदाभयहस्ताभ्यामितराभ्यां तथैव च । वामाङ्के संस्थिता देवी महालक्ष्मीर्महेश्वरी ३९। हिरण्यवर्णा हरिणी सुवर्णरजतस्रजा । सर्वलक्षणसंपन्ना यौवनारंभविग्रहा ४०। (Padma Purana)

He shines with his raised arms that have held the conch and the disc. So also (he shines) with the other two hands granting boons. On his left thigh is seated goddess Mahalakshmi, the great deity. She has a golden complexion and is deer-eyed. She has (put on) a wreath of gold and silver. She is endowed with all (auspicious) marks and her body has (just) the commencement of youth.

Her form is described as:

तप्तकांचनवर्णाभा तप्तकांचनभूषणा । हस्तैश्चतुर्भिः संयुक्ता कनकांबुजभूषिता ४४। नानाविचित्ररत्नाढ्या कनकांबुजमालया । हारकेयूरकटकैरंगुलीयैश्च शोभिता ४५। भुजद्वयघृतोदग्र पद्मयुग्मोपशोभिता । गृहीतमातुलुंगाख्य जांबूनदकराञ्चिता ४६।

Her complexion resembles gold purified with fire. Her ornaments are made of gold purified by fire. She is endowed with four hands. She is adorned with a golden lotus. She is abounding in various beautiful gems. She is also adorned with necklaces, armlets, bracelets and rings. She shines with a couple of big lotuses held in both her hands. Her hands are graced with golden ornaments called citrons.

Nagara Khanda of Skanda Purana gives a story of how Lakshmi devi (consort of Lord Vishnu) once got a curse and became elephant-headed. To get her original face back again she does tapa of Lord Brahma, and Lord Brahma tells her from now you will be known by the name Mahalakshmi.

Lakṣmī said: For some reason, O Lord, I have been transformed into an elephant-faced woman by an extremely furious Brāhmaṇa by uttering a terrible curse. Hence, O Pitāmaha, if you are pleased, change me back again into the old form. I do not choose anything else.

Brahmā said: O fair lady, with my favor, your face will undoubtedly become splendid all the more. So go home. O splendid lady, Mahattva (greatness) has been granted to you by me from today. Hence your name here will be Mahalakshmi. A man who devoutly worships you as elephant-faced, shall become a king on the earth and Lord of elephants. On the second lunar day, O goddess, one who calls you Mahalakshmi and devoutly worships you through Śrīsūkta will never become poor during seven successive births. (Skandha Purana)

Thus from above it is proved that Lord Vishnu's consort is also known by the name Mahalakshmi and she is also worshipped by the name Mahalakshmi.

Mahalakshmi as Lalita Tripurasundari:

Mahatripurasundari is known by the name Mahalakshmi. Lord Hayagriva tells in the Brahmanda Purana:

मन्त्रं श्रीचक्रगेवास्याः सेयं हि त्रिपुरांबिकासैषैव हि महालक्ष्मीः स्फुरच्चैवात्मनः पुरा ॥ ३,४१.३ ॥ पस्यति स्म तदा चक्रं ज्योतिर्मयविजृंभितम् । अस्य चक्रस्य माहात्म्यमपरिज्ञेयमेव हि ॥ ३,४१.४ ॥ साक्षात्सैव महालक्ष्मीः श्रीचक्रमिति तत्त्वतः । यदभ्यर्च्य महाविष्णुः सर्वलोकविमोहनम् । कामसंमोहिनीरूपं भेजे राजीवलोचनः ॥ ३,४१.५ ॥ अर्चयित्वा तदीशानः सर्वविद्येश्वरोऽभवत् । तदाराध्य विशेषेण ब्रह्मा ब्रह्माण्डसूरभूत् । मुनीनां मोहनश्चासीत्स्मरो यद्वरिवस्यया ॥ ३,४१.६ ॥ (Brahmanda Purana)

Hayagrīva said.: 3-6. Sri Chakra alone is her Mantra (Yantra). She is Tripurāmbikā and she is Mahalakshmi herself. Formerly, the Cakra was seen coming out of Ātman throbbing and sparkling. It expanded and increased in luminosity. Indeed the greatness of this wheel (circle) cannot be (fully) comprehended. The fact is Srichakra is Mahalakshmi herself. It was by worshipping it that the lotus-eyed Mahāviṣṇu attained the form of Kāmasammohinī (Enchantress of even god of Love), fascinating the worlds. After worshipping it, Īśāna became the lord of all lores. By propitiating it particularly Brahmā became the progenitor of the Cosmic Egg. It is by means of its worship that the God of Love became the enchanter of even the sages.

Thus from above it is clear that Sri Yantra which is identical to Lalita Tripurasundari is identified as Mahalakshmi herself. For the worship of Sri Yantra, the chapter continues:

He should propitiate Mahalakshmi by means of splendid food offering such as honey, ghee, sugar, milk puddings and other blameless articles as well as black gram cakes of pleasing nature. The intelligent devotee should thus propitiate Mahalakshmi in three Maṇḍalas. Parameśvarī immediately appears before him.

And further it is told:

कामाक्ष्यैव महालक्ष्मीश्चक्रं श्रीचक्रमेव हि । श्रीविद्यैषा परा विद्या नायिका गुरुनायिका ॥ ३,४१.१५ ॥

Kamakshi alone is Mahalakshmi. The Cakra is Śrīcakra itself. This Śrīvidyā is the greatest Vidyā (i.e. Mantra).

In the Brahmanda Purana, Lord Hayagriva further explains to Rishi Agastya in another chapter also as:

Agastya said: What are the different sportive and gracious activities of Mahātripurasundarī who is installed on the pedestal of Kāmakoṣṭha and who is well-renowned as Kāmākṣī? That goddess Mahātripura-sundarī who is Maheśvarī herself is well known as Śrīkāmākṣī. She is stationed in the terrestrial sphere. What are the activities of this goddess? O most eloquent one, recount to me her divine life.”

Hayagrīva said: “Although she is stationed here (on the earth) O Pot-born Sage, she abides in the heart of everyone. She bestows the fruit of acts on all embodied beings in accordance with their different activities. Whatever happens in the world is the result of her activities. One may think something, but she disposes of it freely in accordance with her will. The Śaktis beginning with Tripurā are her own incarnations. She herself was Mahalakshmi. She created three eggs formerly. Those eggs were the abode of the three great Devas as well as the three Śaktis. From one egg were born Ambikā and Puruṣottama; from another egg were born Śrī (goddess of wealth) and Viriñca (Brahmā) and from the other, the third, were born the goddess of speech and Śiva. Maheśvarī united (in marriage) Indirā (the goddess of wealth) with Mukunda (Puruṣottama). She joined Parameśāna with Pārvatī and Pitāmaha with Sarasvatī.

Thus, from above it is clear that Lalita Tripurasundari herself is worshipped by the name Mahalakshmi. Sri Yantra itself is called as Mahalakshmi.

Mahalakshmi as Durga Parameswari:

Mahisasura-Mardini form of Durga is also called by the name Mahalakshmi. Durga Saptashati also known as Sri Chandi is divided into three parts Prathma Charitra, Madhyama Charitra, and Uttama Charitra. In the prathama charitra destruction of Madhu Kaitabha is described. In the Madhyama Charitra destruction of Mahisasura (and his army/generals) is described. In the Uttama charitra destruction of Sumbha Nisumbha (and his army/generals). Prathama Charitra is presided over by Mahakali, Madhyama Charitra is presided over by Mahalakshmi and Uttama Charitra is presided over by deity Mahasaraswati.

Here Mahalakshmi is Durga herself who manifests from inner Shakti of all gods to kill Mahisasura. Various deities provide her with various weapons. Himavan provides her Simha (the lion), her vehicle.

Shiva Purana in the chapter, Incarnation of Mahalakshmi clearly describes it as:

इति देववचः श्रुत्वा दामोदरसतीश्वरौ ।। चक्रतुः परमं कोपं रोषाघूर्णितलोचनौ ।। 5.46.१० ।। ततोतिकोपपूर्णस्य विष्णोश्शंभोश्च वक्त्रतः ।। तथान्येषां च देवानां शरीरान्निर्गतं महः ।। ११ ।। अतीव महसः पुंजं ज्वलन्तं दशदिक्षु च ।। अपश्यंस्त्रिदशास्सर्वे दुर्गा ध्यानपरायणाः ।। १२ ।। सर्वदेवशरीरोत्थं तेजस्तदतिभीषणम् ।। संघीभूयाभवन्नारी साक्षान्महिषमर्दिनी ।।१३।। ... ददौ सिंहं च हिमवान्रत्नानि विविधानि च ।। सुरया पूरितं पात्रं कुबेरोऽस्यै समर्पयत् ।। २८ ।। ... चेलुः समुद्राश्चत्वारो वसुधा च चचाल ह ।। जयशब्दस्ततो देवैरकारि महिषार्दितैः ।।३२।। ततोऽम्बिकां परां शक्तिं महालक्ष्मीस्वरूपिणीम् ।। तुष्टुवुस्ते सुरास्सर्वे भक्तिगद्गदया गिरा ।। ३३ ।। ... तदैव क्षोभयामास त्रैलोक्यं सचराचरम् ।। ततः क्रुद्धा महामाया चण्डिका मानविक्रमा।।५३।। (Shiva Purana, Uma Samhita)

On hearing the gods, Viṣṇu and Śiva were very angry. Their eyes rolled through anger. Then a great splendour issued forth from the mouths of the infuriated Viṣṇu and Śiva and from the bodies of other gods. The gods who were devoted to meditation on Durgā saw the mass of splendour blazing in all the ten directions. That highly terrible splendour issuing forth from the bodies of the gods joined together and became a woman Mahiṣamardinī herself. ... ... Himavat gave her a lion and gems of various sorts. Kubera a vessel filled with wine.... ... The four oceans shook and rolled. The earth quaked. Cries of victory were shouted by “the gods harassed by Mahiṣa. Then the gods eulogized the great Śakti, Ambikā in the form of Mahalakshmi with words choked with devotion. On seeing the world agitated, the enemies of the gods got up with uplifted arms and with their armies ready for war. ... ... He then agitated three worlds including the mobile and immobile beings. Then, Chandika of great honour and exploit became infuriated.

Thus Mahisamardini devi who is Shree Durga devi herself who is Shree Chandika herself is Shree Mahalakshmi. This is the reason while reading Madhyama charitra of Durga Saptashati it is told 'Mahalakshmir Devata' ie. 'The deity is Mahalakshmi'. Also the meditation of Mahlakshmi (dhyana shlokam) while reciting Durga Saptashati is done in her 18 handed form where she holds various weapons like Parashu, Gada, Padma, Dhanu, Danda, etc.. and at the end of dhyanam it is told:

सेवे सैरिभमर्दिनीमिह महालक्ष्मीं सरोजस्थिताम्॥

....I meditate on Mahishasura-Mardini Bhagwati Mahalakshmi sitting on the seat of lotus.

Kalika Purana describes Mahisasura had three births and Mahisamardini kills him in different kalpas taking three different forms. In his first birth, she kills her with her Ugrachanda form having 18 hands, in his second birth she kills her with her Bhadrakali form having 16 hands and in his third birth she kills her with her Katyayani form having 10 hands.

Thus from above it is proved that Mahisasura Mardini Durga herself is worshipped as Mahalakshmi and she is same as Chandika Parameswari also.

Other Aspects:

Sometimes Mahalakshmi is used to denote Matrika devi (like Brahmi, Maheswari, Aindri, etc..) For example this chapter of Agni Purana says:

Brahmā and other gods (should be worshipped) from the east to the north-east. (The goddesses) Brahmāṇī, Māheśvarī, Kaumārī, Vaiṣṇavī, Vārāhī, Indrāṇī, Cāmuṇḍā and Mahalakshmi should be worshipped from the east to the north-east.

This chapter of Garuda Purana also tells:

The image of Brahma has four mouths and is endued with a staff and Kamandalu (water-pot). That of Mahesvara has five mouths, ten arms, is seated on a bull with weapons as well as Matrika goddesses, such as Gauri, Chandrika, Sarasvati and Mahalakshmi. The image of the sun holds a lotus in the hand. Gana has the head of an elephant-Skanda has six mouths.

Also, a specific form of Rudra Chamunda Devi is also known as Mahalakshmi as this chapter of Agni Purana describes:

Hence she (is known as) Rudrachamunda, the goddess of dancing and one who is dancing. This (goddess herself), having four faces and in the sitting posture (is known as) Mahālakṣmī. (The goddess) having ten hands and three eyes (holding) (different) weapons, sword and ḍamaru (little drum) in the right hand and the bell, club, staff with a skull at one end and trident in the left (hand) and eating men, horses, buffaloes and elephants held in the hand is called Siddhacāmuṇḍā.

Similarly, there could be other specific forms in scriptures which are called Mahalakshmi and also various Sahasranamas or Shatanamas of various Devi might include the name Mahalakshmi in it.

How to Identify?

With the features described above, Mahalakshmi can be identified in a picture or idol or temple as:

  1. If she is called Mahalakshmi but installed along with other Shaktis like Brahmi, Maheswari, Kaumari, she can be identified as Matrika Devi.

  2. If she is called Mahalakshmi and is seated with Lord Vishnu, or holding lotus flowers in her hands, granting riches or worshipped with Lakshmi related mantras, she can be identified as Lakshmi Devi (Lord Vishnu's consort).

  3. If she is called Mahalakshmi and is riding over lion, or riding over buffalo, or has 18/16/10 arms or holds Trishula, or is crushing Mahisasura or worshipped with mantras of Durga or Chandika or worshipped when Saptashati is recited, she can be identified as Mahisamardini Durga / Chandika.

  4. If she is called Mahalakshmi and is presiding over Sri Yantra, or holding sugarcane, ankush, etc.. in her hands or is seated over Asana of Panchabrahmanas or is being worshipped with Sri Vidya mantras, she can be identified as Lalita Tripurasundari.

The above are just general features based on the descriptions present above. Some specific form could be identified based on mantra and its dhyana shloka only.

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Yes, Devi MahaLakshmi is Adi Devi Prakriti, and Lakshmi Devi is created by Her.

I am giving story in Short, you can read full story in below link.

Pradhanika Rahasya read after Durga SaptaShati explains -

The King asked- O Rishi! you told me various forms of Devi Chandika, now please tell me about Her Prakriti and way to worship.

Medha Rishi said-
O King! This is the most secretive thing I am telling you. You are great devotee so nothing is there to be not told to you.

सर्वस्याद्या महालक्ष्मीस्त्रिगुणा परमेश्वरी ।
लक्ष्यालक्ष्यस्वरूपा सा व्याप्य कृत्स्नं व्यवस्थिता ॥ ४॥
The Devi MahaLakshmi is Primordial to all and is form of the three Gunas(Sattva, Rajas, Tamas) and is Supreme Goddess. She pervades the whole Universe in visible and invisible form.

O King! seeing the whole existence empty this Supreme Goddess took up to Tamas Guna and assumed the form black as collyrium with teeth coming out from Her beautiful face. Then MahaLakshmi name this form as MahaKaali.

After this, She took up to Sattva Guna and assumed a form white as moon holding Veena, Books and Rosary. She named this form as MahaSaraswati.

Then MahaLakshmi said- O MahaKali! O MahaSaraswati! You two Devis create pairs of male-female.

इत्युक्त्वा ते महालक्ष्मीः ससर्ज मिथुनं स्वयम् ।
हिरण्यगर्भौ रुचिरौ स्त्रीपुंसौ कमलासनौ ॥ १७॥

ब्रह्मन्विधे विरिञ्चेति धातरित्याह तं नरम् ॥
श्रीः पद्मे कमले लक्ष्मीत्याह माता स्त्रियं च ताम्॥ १८॥

Telling them thus, MahaLakshmi herself created a pair of male-female who were born of Golden Womb, looked very beautiful and were sitting on Lotus.

Then She called them- Brahma, Vidhi, Virincha, Dhaataa , to male. And She called the female as Shree, Padmaa, Kamalaa, Lakshmi

Then MahaKaali created a White coloured man having red arms and blue throat and was called Rudra, Shankara, Sthaanu, Trilochana, Kaparddi, and a white female who was called Trayee, Vidya, KaamaDhenu, Bhaashaa, Aksharaa, Svaraa.

MahaSaraswati created a pair of fair complexion female and a dark complexion male. The male is called Vishnu, Krishna, Hrishikesha, Vaasudeva, Janaardana. The female is called Uma, Gauri, Sati, Chandi, Sundari, Subhagaa, Shivaa.

ब्रह्मणे प्रददौ पत्नीं महालक्ष्मीर्नृप त्रयीम् ।
रुद्राय गौरीं वरदां वासुदेवाय च श्रियम् ॥ २५॥

Then Goddess MahaLakshmi made Trayee(Saraswati) as wife of Brahmaa, Gauri wife of Rudra, and Shree (Lakshmi ) as wife of Vishnu Vaasudeva.

स्वरया सह सम्भूय विरिञ्चोऽण्डमजीजनत् ।
बिभेद भगवान् रुद्रस्तद्गौर्या सह वीर्यवान् ॥ २६॥

पुपोष पालयामास तल्लक्ष्म्या सह केशवः
महालक्ष्मीरेवमजा राजन् सर्वेश्वरेश्वरी ॥ २८॥

निराकारा च साकारा सैव नानाभिधानभृत् ।
नामातरैर्निरूप्यैषा नाम्ना नान्येन केनचित् ॥ २९॥

Virincha(Brahma) along with Swaraa(Saraswati) created Universal Ovum. Rudra along with Gauri pierced that Egg.

Then Keshava along with Lakshmi nourished and looked after all creation.

O King! This MahaLakshmi is this way Unborn and Goddess of All. She is formless and she takes various forms which are given various names.

She has innumerable names and therefore cannot be addressed just one name.

Very clearly, Devi Adi Prakriti MahaLakshmi is supreme Unborn who further created the Devas and Devis. Mother Lakshmi is one of her created Devis. In Subtle sense of course Devi MahaLakshmi is no different from Lakshmi Devi (for that matter, even we human beings are no different from MahaLakshmi). But on gross levels MahaLakshmi is supreme Devi who further created MahaKaali and MahaSaraswati, and hence other Deva and Devis.

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  • So who's the husband of Mahalakshmi?
    – user9969
    Commented Mar 3, 2018 at 18:18
  • @SuryaKantaBoseChowdhury Who knows. Does She even need? But when Mahishasura proposed MahaLakshmi, She said - "O Daitya! I desire no other man other than Supreme Purusha. I am close to Him just like iron move close to magnet." Devi Puraana, Book 5, Chapter 16
    – user12826
    Commented Mar 3, 2018 at 19:20
  • This is misleading.. Supreme Goddess is Durga or Chandika as per Sri Chandi.. so how can any other be supreme? As per Sri Chandi, Mahalakshmi, Mahasarswati and Mahakali are the three manifestations of Sri Chandika..She is the combined form of the three.. @AnuragSingh also by adding maha we can't change the deity.. as i have shown in the answer..If u see overall what all scriptures has to say, then Lakshmi and Mahalakshmi are just one and the same..
    – Rickross
    Commented Mar 4, 2018 at 6:02
  • @Rickross Devi Puraan Book 5 Chapter 10, Verse 1-2, Devi Spoke to Messenger of Mahishasura who came with proposal sent by Mahisha- "O Minister-in-chief! Know Me as the Mother of the gods; my name is MahâLaksmî. It is I that destroy all the Daityas. I am requested by all the Devas to kill Dânava Mahisa." But This MahaLakshmi is Supreme Goddess Prakriti who was worshipped by Devas as - "Obeisance to **Shivaa who is benevolent, She is KaalaRatri, Rudraani, Indraani, and Vaishnavi. She knows all but none knows Her."
    – user12826
    Commented Mar 4, 2018 at 14:59
  • Now You can She if she is Lakshmi who appeared from Ocean and is sister of Moon, OR if This Devi is the Supreme Prakriti who is known as MahaLakshmi. Just like, Vishnu can also be called MahaDeva, but usually we mean MahaDeva as Shiva. Same way though yes We call Devi Padmaa Lakshmi as MahaLakshmi, but This Devi MahaLakshmi as in above is Supreme Devi , not necessarily Lakshmi Devi.
    – user12826
    Commented Mar 4, 2018 at 15:03
2

Very Simple Answer to Make Everyone understand is Lakshmi is vishnupathi Sri devi and Mahalakshmi is Adishakti Parvathi Shiva pathni...Mahalakshmi Created Lakshmi.

1
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