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Om Namah Shivay- – myth, belief, reality and poetry – Part 2

Siva as the eternal principle, the supreme god, the cosmic soul,  the support of all existence. But the ignorant aspirant bound  in the meshes of illusion goes in quest for knowledge and  imagines that his lord has a personal form possessed of attributes distinct from himself, who in moments of distress responds to his prayers and bestows grace. The devotee, then  aspires for spiritual enlightenment and takes to ritual for self purification. Sivapurana enjoins several rites of worship and  acts of homage, comprising a series of physical and spiritual  practices in accompaniment with the Tantra, Yantra and  Mantra appliances. He starts with the threefold devotion.

Rahu fought a very terrible combat with Soma -the  Moon. The Amrta (nectar) arising from the body of the Moon  was imbibed by Rahu. Due to the contact with nectar (another  figure) like Rahu rose up. All these things were seen by Sambhu, the great lord.  “There is no doubt about this that I am the base and support  of all living beings. I am affectionate and dear to all, Asuras as  well as Suras.” On being told thus Rahu bowed down to Siva. The  Moon stationed on his crest discharged nectar out of fear. On  account of it, many such heads were produced simultaneously.  Sambhu made them into a beautiful garland and tied it to his  head like a (decorative) head-ornament. 

By swallowing Kalakuta ( poison that rose while the ocean churning) for the purpose of accomplishing the objective of Devas, he became blue-throated with a garland of skulls thus made.Mahesvara wore the garland of skulls.By means of that garland shone the noble-souled Нага,the primordial lord of Devas. He is the  lord by whom the great demon Gaja (Elephant) was struck  down and the huge (demon) Andhaka was reduced to dust. It was Siva by whom Ganga was held in the middle  of his head. He, the dispeller of fear, kept the Moon on his  crest. Vedas, Puranas, Agamas, different kinds of Srutis  and scriptures argue and discuss variously in accordance with  differences in their respective texts. In the course of their discus­sion they become dumb. Siva, the sole friend of the universe, is  being investigated and described differently according to the  opinion of the preceptors of different Agamas. Abandoning the eternal lord Siva, the supreme spirit  that could be comprehended only through the Vedas, deluded  people commit blunders. They do not realize Siva of the form  of the Great Spirit. Siva is the Paramatma (Supreme Soul) by whom everything is created and sustained. He permeates everything and  evolves everything. The entire universe is a part of this Lord.  He may, perhaps, be comprehended through the Vedanta.

Besides the ancient Indian  literature, even the archaeological evidence is quite vocal on the subject, because the  presence of the  inscription over the seal has not been satisfactorily deciphered. But the deity is supposed to  be the prototype of Siva. Even the pre-Harappan sites of Namazga, Kuli and Zhob in  Afghanistan and Baluchistan, have produced the terracotta images of Siva and don’t, besides a  large number of bulls. This goes on to establish the antiquity of the worship of Siva in the  Indian subcontinent In so far as the historical sites are concerned, enough of evidence has  been forthcoming in the form of terracotta artefacts, concerning worship of Siva in the sites  of Ahichhatra, Kausambi, Raj ghat and many others.

Lord Siva is being worshipped in the country and abroad from time immemorial.Lord Siva is beginningless after he attained the position of adoration and worship. Genesis of Siva  worship can be traced in the Harappan culture as well, where he is believed to have been adored  in the human as well as symbolic form. Nandin, his bull, too had immense importance at that  stage of the Indian culture, where the bull is depicted over a large number of seals discovered  from the Harappan sites of the stage of history. In fact, Siva is the great god, Mahadeva. Siva has been found in the Harappan culture commonly known as the Indus valley  civilization, which is believed to be the pre-Vedic The name of the pre-Vedic proto-type of  Siva is not known to us, but Rudra continued to be the principal name of Siva. The Harappan  sites in the country as well as those in Pakistan have produced evidence of the presence of  Siva in the human, as well as the symbolic form. A seal from Harappa displays a homed deity  seated cross legged in the forest, stretching his arms up to the knees, which has been  interpreted to represent Siva, in the form of Pasupati, surrounded by the wild life.

He is  the immortal Divine Principle who has entered the mortal beings. He is known as the Death-conquering Deity, Mrtyunjaya. The Mrityunjaya Mantra is oldest Vedic literature, the Rig Veda (7.59. 12)

oṃ tryambakaṃ yajāmahe

sugandhiṃ puṣṭivardhanam।

urvārukamiva bandhanān

mṛtyormukṣīya māmṛtāt ॥

English translation:

I worship that fragrant Shiva of three eyes, the one who nourishes all living entities.

May he help us severe our bondage with samsara by making us realise that we are never separated from our immortal nature.

Try-ambakam: “The one with these Three Shaktis :” to him.

  Yajamahe: “We make sacrificial offerings.” 

  Su-gandhim: “Our lives become fragrant with meritorious deeds, ”   So, awakens the shaktis then  

Pushti-vardhanam: “Unto him who nourishes all our shaktis, strengthens and increases  our devotion by His grace, and makes us advance into the spiritual dimension.”  

 Urvarukam-iva [bandhanat]: “As a melon drops from the vine upon ripening, so also  may we, upon ripening of the fruits of our actions.”  

 Bandhanat, Mrtyoh: “From bondage that is death.  

Mukshiya: “Be released, attain moksha.”

  Ma-amrtat: “May I never again be parted from  amrta, from the immortality of Atman,  the Spiritual Self, or Parama-Atman, the Supreme Self’

The Mahamrityunjay Mantra is a famous verse found in the Rig Veda which glorifies a “three-eyed deity”.

There was once a sage named Mrikandu who dwelled with his wife,  Marudmati. They did not have any son and hence decided to take upon deep and long  penance to seek the blessings of Lord Shiva for getting blessed with a son. With great  devotion, the couple underwent deep penance, as a result of which Lord Shiva got  impressed with them and granted them the boon they wished for, but the blessing came yet there was a condition. Lord Shiva gave them an option to choose between an intelligent and wise son with a short life span and a foolish son with a long life. Sage  Mrikandu happily accepted the boon to be blessed with an intelligent son with a short  life. Soon after, they had a son whom they named as Markandeya.  Slowly and steadily young Mankandeya started growing under the love and affection of  his dear parents. As his sixteenth birthday was about to approach, the parents started getting nervous. They grew sad day by day which Markandeya could  sense easily. He asked his parents the reason for their remorse and sadness to which they  narrated the entire story to their son and the boon granted by Lord Shiva. Markandeya  was very intelligent and devotional. He began his penance in front of a Shivling, chanting  along with the Mahamrityunjaya mantra. Lord Yamaraj, the God of death, came to take  Markandeya on his sixteenth birthday but Markandeya was totally engrossed with his  penance. He wrapped himself around the Shivling, embracing it with his two arms, not  willing to let go. However, Lord Yamaraj was too determined to take the young boy with  him. Hence, he threw the noose to catch hold of him but by mistake, it got held around  the Shivling. Instantly Lord Shiva appeared and since he got extremely annoyed, he  killed Yamaraj on the spot.

This incident of Lord Yamaraj’s death travelled across all the three worlds. All the devtas  came to Lord Shiva and on their earnest request Lord Shiva revived Yamaraj but on one  condition that Markandeya would now live for life long. He would remain untouched  forever. Later on, as time passed, Markandeya became a great sage on whom an entire Purana has been composed by the name of Markandeya Purana. As per the Hindu  scriptures, Markandeya is alive even today.

Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra is a great death-conquering mantra, it is a verse of the Rig  veda-7.59.12. It is also called the Rudramantra, referring to the furious aspect of Lord  Shiva, the Tryambakam mantra, alluding to Shiva’s three eyes. It is also called as  Mritasanjivani mantra because it is a component of life-restoring practice. The benefits  of mantra, it restores physical, mental, emotional health and it is a Moksha mantra which  bestows longevity and immortality.

Nobody is immortal, everyone has his own expiration date. The closer you get to death, the more intensely you live. Only when you are coping with a somewhat death sentence. You shall try to live a self-indulgent life before realizing that this does not fulfill the meaning of existence. That shouldn’t happen in life.

One should live on actively with courage and without any fear. All evil thoughts and actions must be avoided. Body, mind and spirit must be kept clean and pure. One should not be enchanted by the temptations and unnecessary pleasures of material life and in this manner remain free from sensual attachments and ignoble desires. If we live a life of purity without evil thought and actions, God will surely grant us happiness and prosperity.

For me chanting the mantra is a way to get courage to face multiple rare diseases which has reached a crisis where there is possibility of take off from the world bidding adieu to all.

The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think. ~ Horace Walpole.

 

The lifetime blues made me face anything and the nerves caused disorders that became the target of treatment and debate between doctors. Oh, no! I don’t have any psychological illness but physiological disorders.A deeper import lurks in the legend told my infant years than lies upon that truth we live to learn. One of the intellectual strengths of humans is the ability to imagine impossible things. When you have the fullest flower of intelligence, personality, and pluck.

 

The mind is bogged down by lingering illness, it goes swoon to a tee but those who want to flee are held by a shackle to God’s project “Earth”. With multiple  horrible redundant ailments have nothing to lose, I can’t try to live again a perfect life, relaxed and healthy, under trees bearing chocolates, mountains of books but being less imaginary I say I don’t want to lose this life with my Mum and the instances of delights divided by twilight. I never had depressions and listlessness. Modern antidepressants, which can benefit people in temporary grief in reaction to life events, or suffering from internal, chronic depression are there.They may make you look cheerful but watching Tv, cooking, going to different places does it make you internally happy? Pretty strong things in life, depressions, withered hopes but still in poverty I am lucky to have my own pluck. Don’t cackle, my mind dances with fun. I am not immoderately slothful yet I vex very easily. Knowledge is power, ignorance about your disease will lead you nowhere. I write for Times of India without any honorarium to gain knowledge and keep my mind involved. I write or read chanting Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra. My mind swayes in the articulation of the words. I feel it’s more powerful than any anti dissociative drugs. I honour every moment while chanting the powerful mantra. Death will put an end to it hence I enjoy little birds singing on the leafy branches, warm bright sunshine light up the cloudless sky and I love my life with my wonderful mum.

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Disclaimer

Views expressed above are the author’s own.



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