Sivapuranam in English – Shatarudra Samhita

The verses of Sivapuranam Lyrics narrate the divine stories and attributes of Lord Shiva.

Sivapuranam in English – Shatarudra Samhita

Shaearudra Samhita

Enumerated Sage Soota the various manifestations if Shiva, the eternal force to Shaunaka and the holy group:

Five Kalpa Incarnations Of Shiva

Omnipresent Shiva first manifested as Dadyojata in the 19th Kalpa (aeon) called shwetalohita (White Hue). In that Kalpa, Brahma nade penance for Force Eternal. Shwetalohita got lorn out of him and he put his mind to Sadyojata ronsidering him the manifestation of Shiva. That ict produced four accomplished characters lamely Sunanda, Nandana, Vishwanandana and Jpanandana.

In the 20th Kalpa, the colour of Brahma became ilood red. He put his thoughts into wishing a son. A son he begot who wore red dress, red ornaments md he had red eyes. It was Vamdeva incarnation Shiva who produced four sons namely Viraja, /ivaha, Vishakha and Vishwabhana. Vamdeva;ave Brahma inspiration to create.

In 21st Kalpa, Brahma donned yellow dress and neditated to beget a son. A glowing and long-irmed son materialised. Brahma guessed it was Tatapurusha’ incarnation of Shiva. He incanted jayatri mantra. By the grace of Gayatri and Shiva Ihat divine character begot several sons.

Then arrived Shiva Kalpa. After thousands of years of penance Brahma was blessed with a son. He was black. His clothes and other embellishments were also black. Brahma prayed to that black (Krishna) character. The black one produced four sons namely, Krishna, Krishnashikha, Krishnasya and Krishnakantha. They evolved Ghor Yoga to help Brahma expand his creation.

The next Kalpa was Vishwaroopa in which the creator Brahma again made penance for a son. From his mind Saraswati emerged and also manifested Eeshana, the fifth incarnation of Shiva who had crysteline transparent hue and pretty ornaments. Four sons he produced named Jati, Mundi, Shikhandi and Ardhamunda. They all took to the path of yoga. Hearing the tale of these five incarnations is a very blessingful exercise.

Eight Images Of Shiva

Announced Soota to the holy audience that he was going to reveal eight images or idol forms of Shiva. The eight images namely are; Sharva, Bhava, Rudra, Ugra, Bheema, Pashupati, Eeshan and Mahadeva. They are like eight pearls of a rosary.

The eight images are vested in Earth, Water, Fire, Air, Space, Field master, Sun and Moon. Shiva has all-pervading and permeating cosmic form in Sharva. Bhava enlivens the abstract and objective world, sustains it and runs it. Rudra and Ugra are his angry and destructive aspects. Bheema represents space. His Pashupati form is the deity of

all living creatures. He is field master and also deliverer from transmigration. He is like sun that destroys darkness within and in omnipresence He is Eeshan. Mahadeva form is blissful and showers grace on the faithfuls. Shiva’s ‘Atma’ form is vested in all other forms as their soul.

Ardhanareeshwara Form

Asked Shaunaka :
Holy sir! What about His Ardhanareeshwara form? What necessitated it?
Nodded Soota his head in acknowledgment and responded :
After creating the world and creatures Brahma saw that the creation was stagnating and its was not multiplying or recreating. He invoked Shiva to seek guidance to make the creation self-generative.

In answer to his prayer Shiva manifested in half-man+half-woman Ardhanareeshwara form to show the way to Brahma that creation could be made self-generative through copulation of opposite sexes. To the female half of Shiva, Brahma prayed, “Mother! Bless me with the power to create female genders in all species.” The goddess blessed Brahma and Ardhanareeshwara vanished.

Rishabhadeva Incarnation

Said Soota :
Now hear about His Dwapara Yuga incarnations : In 7th Manvantara, there will be 12 Kalpas during which Kalpeshwara Lord will manifest to shine. Brahma shall incarnate as great grandson of a Manu. Manvantra will consist of 4 ugas. At the end of Dwapara, Shiva will incarnate.

In this Yuga, Vysa will manifest. At the end of Kaliyuga, He will manifest as a sage with our disciples. Brahma will become His disciple. Yajapati Satya and Sutari will be His incarnations in Dwapara and Kaliyuga respectively.

Dundhubi, 3hataroopa, Trisheeka and Ketu will be His disciples and Veda scholars. In the third Dwapara, Vyasa shall manifest as Bhargava and earn fame as Dhamana near the domain of Shiva whose four sons will be pupil of Vyasa incarnate.

In the fourth Dwapara, Angiraj will be Vyasa and Shiva will incarnate as Suhotra who will sire our sons. All will become sages. They will be known as Sumukha, Dumukha, Durdarbha and Turatikrama. In fifth Dwapara, Vyasa will be 3avita and Shiva will manifest as Kanka, an intense penance maker. He would help Vyasa Savita)

In the 9th Dwapara, Vyasa will be Sarswata and shiva will manifest as Rishabha. Parashara, Garga, bhargava and Girisha will be his disciples. In this incarnation Shiva will revive a prince called Bhadrayu. At his 16th year of age Rishabha would dsit him and impart the knowledge of kingship and would bless him with divine weapons and powers.

Bhadrayu would defeat his enemies and marry a beauty called Keertimalini. This is the glory of Shiva’s Rishabha incarnation.
(Note: Soota used present and future tenses in his narration as he was quoting someone’s prophecy made in the past). Began Sage Soota the tale of Nandishwara incarnation after a brief pause.

Nandishwara Tale

Once there was a noble and very religious muni called Shilada. Wishing for a son as bountiful as the rains, he made penance to please Indra. Indra revealed he could not grant him a son but advised him to propitiate Shiva who could boon him a son. After a long penance making Shiva appeared to Shilada and asked the devout to spell his wish.

Nothing was beyond the power of Divinity Supreme.Shilada revealed the wish for a son but not born out of a woman and as great as Lord himself was. The faithful bowed his head in reverence and expectations. Several times great sages, Vishnu and even Brahma had prayed to Him to incarnate But human incarnation involved Father of Creation to become some one’s son. To grant the wish of his dear devotee He accepted to do that. Thus, Shilada was booned.

On divine inspiration, Shilada performed a Havana sometime later. From the flames of the holy fire, Shiva manifested as a boy to the delight of Shilada who named the baby Nandi and performed his birth rites. As Nandi grew up he began learning letters.One day, Maitravarunas group of soothsayers dropped in at the ashram of Shilada. They read the fate lines of Nandi and predicted he had only one more year to live. Shocked was Shilada. But Nandi was unperturbed.

He assured his foster father the would make a deep penance to win the grace of Supreme Deity and get blessed with extension of life span. He left for the forest to undertake his mission. His dedicated penance making with unwavering devotion pleased Shiva and He appeared there with his entire family. They all looked very impressed with Nandi.

Shiva blessed him with immunity from death. The blessing was for his father as well. Shiva said they would gain a place in His domain and shall be worshipped like deities by the faithfuls. Nandi would live with Shiva forever serving as the chief of Shivaganas.

In that capacity Deity Supreme performed investiture rite of Nandi on the spot with the water taken from His matted hair crown. In blessing Shiva produced a lotus garland by His divine will and gave it to Nandi. Nandi put it in his neck and with that he transformed into a divinity with three eyes and ten shoulders like Shiva Himself.

From the divine water used for the investiture five rivers issued forth namely, Sutoya, Jatodaka, Trisrota, Vrishadhwani and Jambuvu. The mother source of the rivers were to be known as Panchanada. After this rite Shiva invoked all his ganas and the gods who materialised there in response to His divine summon. Nandi was congratulated by them and prayed to.

Seven Marutis (Wind deities) arrived and offered their daughter Shyasha to be the consort of Nandi. They were duly married. Deity Supreme declared that the couple would ever stay in his sight as part of His retinue. They all went to the Kailasha domain along with the Family Divine. The holy audience mentally made obeisance to Nandishwara.

Bhairava Tale

Hear now the story of Bhairava, said Soota :

Once some divine sages went to Brahma to learn about highest Divinities that appeared to be beyond their comprehension scope. They wanted Brahma to explain the real status of Soul Supreme and Truth Ultimate. Brahma was then under the maya spell of Shiva. He arrogantly claimed he was Soul Supreme (Parmatma). And Ultimate Truth (Parabrahma) was his other synonym. Vishnu who was also present there contested his claim saying, “That is impossible. Remember the fact that I am your father.

I am Yajnanarayana, the final end of all religious exercises and divinities.” The two argued gradually getting heated. Then, they came to physical blows to the horror of all. Suddenly a mysterious pillar of luminosity manifested between them. From the luminous pillar blue coloured Rudra with a trident emerged.

Brahma laughed and reminded, “It is you Rudra baby! You took birth from the centre of my eyebrows. As you cried pitiably I lovingly called you Rudra (weepy). My baby will stand by me against Vishnu. Won’t you baby? Pray to me and I will protect you.” Rudra was not pleased. To silence Brahma.

He created a ferocious character called ‘ hairava who manifestation, “The Master of Time, Kalabha! Firs’ punish this Brahma for blasphemy. Known you will be as ‘Amardaka’ for being the vanquisher of evil. Devour you will, the sins of my faithful and earn the epithet of ‘Sinvorous’.” Bhairava acted fast. With the sharp edge of one of his finger nails Bhairava clipped off the fifth face of Brahma because it was the one that had spoke those outrageous words.

It at once put sense in the lotus-born Brahma. In a trice his self conceit was banished. The chastised Vishnu and Brahma prayed to Shiva, the Deity Supreme which got redirected to Rudra, the most compassionate and merciful manifestation of Lord.

He blessed Vishnu and Brahma magnanimously. Bhairava was also told to forgive the two divinities and go around the worlds carrying the severed head of Brahma teaching kapalavrata that would cleanse one of the sin of killing a brahmin. He created a female character symbolic of the killing of that order to follow Bhairava till he reached the town of Pashupati, Kashi.

With the Brahma skull, Kaal Bhairava set out followed by Brahmahatya the symbolic female character. They went to Baikuntha, the domain of Vishnu. The visitors were welcomed by the hosts Vishnu and his consort Laxmi. The guests were properly treated to traditional rites and rituals ordered by the holy tenets.

Goddess Laxmi put customary alms (Manoradha Pati) in the Brahma skull. Before leaving Baikuntha, Bhairava asked Vishnu to seek a boon. Vishnu just sought the boo having steady devotion to his (Bhairav^^ sacred feet. A propitiated Bhairava blessed Vishnu with benefaction power effective even for the gods besides humans.

When Bhairava set his foot in Kashi, Brahmahatya fell through the earth screaming to land in Patala. The Brahma skull too fell down to ground and that spot came to be known as Brahmakapala. Bhairava made Kashi his permanent abode and kept fulfilling the wishes of the faithfuls of Lord Shiva and his manifestations. Worship of Kaal Bhairava on the 8th day of waning moon phase of the month of Margashirsha is specially rewarding. That was the day Bhairava manifested from Rudra.

A fast, worship and wakeful night vested in prayer saying shall cleanse all the sins of devotees. The residents of Kashi may worship Bhairava on 8th and 14th of each month (vernacular) and on all Tuesdays to earn credits. Those who don’t act this will have sins accumulate by the day. The faithfuls who read this episode with devotion and comprehension will be delivered from all kinds of bindings.

Tale Of Narsimha-Sharabha

Implored Shaunaka on behalf of the holy group Scholiast Soota! Please narrate to us the story of the most mysterious manifestations of Narsimha and Sharabha.

Gladly obliged Sage Soota :
Jaya and Vijaya were door guards of the domain of Vishnu. Once some sages felt offended at their obstructive behaviour and put a curse on them target born in the demonic race. Consequently the two were later born as mighty demons Hiranyaksha and Hiranyakashipu to Diti-Kashyapa couple.

Once king Hiranyaksha of demons rolled the earth like a mat and hid it in the sea. Vishnu took incarnation as a boar and retrieved the earth from water. After that he killed Hiranyaksha. Hiranyakashipu took vow to avenge the death of his brother from Vishnu. He made great trouble for the gods and the holy men. But his son, Prahlada was an ardent devotee of Vishnu.

The boy had spent sometime in an ashram of a sage with his mother when Hiranyakashipu had gone to make a long penance. The father tried to correct his son to bring him into his own anti-God faith. He tried persuation, coercion, threat and even terror but boy Prahlada was not deterred. Prahlada had unwavering faith in the divinity of Vishnu. The attempts to kill Prahlada failed as each time a divine power saved him.

Driven to the limit of frustration one day Hiranyakashipu summoned his son Prahlada and screamed at him asking if he ever had seen his non-existent Vishnu? Prahlada replied His lord Vishnu was every where but was visible to sinless eyes only. The demon king asked if Vishnu was in the iron pillar Prahlada was standing near and latter replied in affirmative.

In seething anger Hiranyakashipu ran to the pillar and kicked it contemptuously. The pillar split making a sound like a thunder clap and Narsimha incarnation emerged out of it. It put Hiranyakashipu on his one raised thigh and tore open his stomach with its claws spilling out intestines and blood streams.The gods hailed Narsimha and sang prayers his praise. Horn bugles and kettle-drums were sounded.

Horrifying Wrath

Even after the death of villain, the prayers failed to cool down the anger of Narsimha. He scooped out all the entrails and wore them around his neck grotesquely. Then He smeared His body red with demonic blood and slouched Hiranyakashipu body on his shoulder. Thus, He roamed about with His mouth open threatening to devour entire creation. The horrifying posture shocked and frightened everyone.

The birds fell dead like stones. The clouds froze into ice and shattered into shards. Planets strayed from their orbital paths. Stars blinked. The sun was dim in the grim situation. The mountains shivered and the earth trembled under His angry feet. The gods ran in panic.

The trees fell down shaken to the roots. Meditating ascetics received rude jolts disturbing their exercise. All the celestial beings were shell shocked. They all prayed for the anger of Narsimha to calm down but He showed no signs of any relenting.

Narada ran to Vishnu and Laxmi but dealing with Narsimha was beyond their scope. Brahma too was helpless. Now the only way out was the grace of the Deity Supreme. They all went to Kailasha abode of Shiva and prayed Him to call back the horror of Narsimha. Shiva assured them of some action.

He ordered Veerbhadra to rein in Narsimha but the latter refused even to recognise the former when he approached. Narsimhaj threatened that he was going to gobble up the whole cosmos. He claimed He was now creator and destroyer Himself. So, Veerbhadra transformed into Sharabha.

Sharabha Act

Veerbhadra’s Sharabha manifestation was infact Bhairava element of Shiva. Sharabha tried to plead with Narsimha reminding him of the supremacy of Deity Supreme. But after killing Hiranyakashipu Narsimha had become a manifestation of arrogance and angst beyond any reasoning. The words of Sharabha fuelled the anger of Narsimha. He pounced at Sharabha but the latter was alert and he took Narsimha in his arms hold and squeezed tight. Narsimha squirmed helplessly.

With Narsimha in his clutches Sharabha flew to Kailasha. There he dashed Narsimha under Nandi bull, the carrier of Shiva. Vishnu in Narsimha form was now worried.The gods and sages prayed to Shiva. Vishnu also prayed trembling in fright. Sharabha had squeezed off all his divine powers and taken possession of them. Later propitiated Shiva restored all divine powers of Vishnu and assured that he would continue to be worshipped and glorified as before. Shiva added Narsimha head to his skull rosary.

Grihapati Incarnation Tale

Once there lived a religious scholar called Vaishwanara in the Narupura town situated on the banks of the Narmada river. He was an ardeevotee of Shiva and a scholiast of scriptures. Suchishmati was the name of his wife. She was a devoted wife and truthful woman of virtue, leased with her selfless sendee Vaishwanara one day confided to her that as a tribute to her dedication he wished to grant her a boon. The wife aid, “If you are really satisfied with my devotion rant me a son as glorious as Shiva.” It set the man hinking.

She had asked for a lot more than his range of power. Only Deity Supreme could fulfil such desire. So, he set out for Kashi to propitiate,ord through sustained worship. He took dips in various holy waters. Then, before Vaishw0eshwara dam he made penance for one year on empty stomach.

After one year, one morning when he went to he Lingam a boy emerged out of it. The boy was /very pretty. It had yellow matted hair-plaits and vore a crown. He was giggling. Vaishwanara felt overjoyed. He made obeisance and prayed to the? oy. The manifestation asked him to spell his wish. Te said Lord was omniscient. Then, the boy said he would incarnate from the womb of his wife Suchishmati and his name would be ‘Grihapati’.

When Grihapati was born, Brahma and other deities converged to see the new manifestation of Shiva. They performed the birth rites and named he boy. At the age of five Vaishwanara began to each letters to his divine son after the sacred bread (yajnopaveeta) initiation. When the boy was hine Narada arrived one day and studied the Cundali of Grihapati. Narada told Vaishwanara and Suchishmati that their son was glorious but there was a bad sign of grave danger to his life from fire or lightning in the 12th year of his age. The parents grieved.

The son consoled them that he would earn the grace of Deity Supreme and cross that hurdle safely. The boy went to the forest and made a severe penance to propitiate Mahadeva. Only edible roots he lived on for full six months. Then he got more austere and took water only and further on only one drop he took.

He was now a twelve year old. One day lord Indra materialised before him and offered a boon. But the boy asked Indra to go saying that he would accept any boon or blessing only from Deity Supreme. Indra looked offended and he took out his thunderbolt weapon. The young penance maker thought he was about to die. Suddenly, Shiva materialised there. The astonished boy just stared at his idol incredulously. Shiva said He knew what his wish was and granted the boy the celestial position of Agni.

Deity Supreme daclared as Agni he would be present in all creatures manifesting as the fire of hunger, the Jatharagni. Agnishwara would be the name of Shiva Lingam he would plant. The worshippers of Agnishwara Lingam would have no fear of fire or lightning in form of thunderbolt. Additionally, he was appointed Master of North-East direction by Deity Supreme. Then, Shiva merged into Agnishwara Lingam. Thus, Agni began to be called as Vaishwanara as well.

Yaksha Incarnation Tale

Carried on Sage Soota :
Once the gods won a battle against the demons. For some reason it went to their head. The gods began to brag about their valour, power and matchless battle craft. Self-conceited gods began to perceive themselves as better divinities than even Deity Supreme. To correct the gods Shiva manifested as a giant Yaksha of mysterious kind in the domain of the gods.

He asked the gods what they were bragging about and laughing like idiots? The gods talked of their victory power, valour and divinity. Yaksha said that all those things were merely gift of the grace of Deity Supreme, Shiva. Without His blessings the gods were nothing, he said. Yaksha gave Agni a dry straw and asked him to burn it. However hard Agni tried the straw did not catch fire. Pavana (wind) god was asked to blow the straw away.

Even storm and tornado could not budge the straw. Indra’s thunderbolt made no impression on the straw. The gods stood embarrassed in defeat and greatly puzzled they were. All their bravado was biting the dust.

Then, a divine voice revealed that Yaksha was Deity Supreme, Shiva who was Creator, Sustainer and Destroyer of the universe. The gods merely operated divine powers blessed to them by Him, it said.The gods came to their senses and prayed to Shiva in a mood of penance. Yaksha transformed into Shiva and the repentant gods received His blessings.

Shiva Dashavaaram (Ten Incarnations)

Sage Soota, then enumerated Ten incarnations of Shiva with feminine Shakti counterparts respectively.

  • Mahakaal incarnation grants devotion and deliverance from transmigration. And wish granter is His Shakti counterpart Mahakaali.
  • Tara incarnation grants happiness and moksha. Devi Tara is His counterpart. .
  • Bhuvaneshwara is his tribal chieftain incarnation. His Shakti counterpart is Bhuvaneshzvari.
  • Shodasha Vidyeshawara incarnation and Shakti Shodasha. Vidyeshwari grants joys and comforts to devotees.
  • Bhairava incarnation which has Bhairavi Shakti grants wishes of the faithfuls.
  • Chhinnamastaka incarnation’s Chhinnamasta Shakti fulfils wishes and begets the devotee peace.
  • Dhumravana incarnation has Dhumravati Shakti Grants rewards.
  • Bagla incarnation. Baglamukhi Shakti is very benefactor and joy begetter.
  • Matanga incarnation has Matangi Shakti.
  • Kamal incarnation manifested Kamala Shakti who is wish granter and protects faithfuls.

All these ten incarnations are deities of occult practices, mystical rites, tantra vidya (occult knowledge) and Yantra rituals. These ten powers) mysticism can destroy an enemy and punish the

Eleven Rudra-Mudras

(11 Manifestations Of Rudra)

Heard in awe the holy audience of Soota as he unveiled mysticism of Shiva Jnan. Continued he :
Once demonic forces drove away Indra and his gods from the heaven and sent them into hiding. Both the groups were the offsprings of Sage Kashyapa from different wives. The sibling rivalry was at the ugliest. The sire sympathised with his god sons because the demonics were very aggresive. For the sake of Indra Sage Kashyapa planted a Lingam at the bank of holy Ganga near Vishweshwara Lingam.

For a long time he penanced infront of Lingam with single minded devotion. At last Shiva manifested and asked the sage what he wished for. The sage revealed that he was sad at the misery of his good sons, particularly Indra. He prayed to Shiva to banish his woe by incarnating as his son to fight on the side of the gods for their benefit. Shiva granted his wish.

In due course of time Kashyapa was blessed with a son, the incarnation of Shiva. He was named ‘Surabhi’. Surabhi sired eleven sons who were various manifestations of Rudra aspect of Shiva, namely, Kapali, Pingla, Bheema, Virupaksha, Vilhita, Shasta, Ajapat, Ahirbudhanudu, Shambhu, Chanda and Bhava.

All these incarnations took part in the battles against the demons and gained victories for the gods. On the spiritual plane they were positioned in North-Eastern direction and protected the faithfuls of Deity Supreme besides blessing them. By their grace the gods regained their kingdom and the lost glory.

Durvasa Tale

Began Soota to relate mysterious origin of Durvasa: Once Atri, the sage of the highest order made a severe penance for a son. He was the husband of the famed Anusuiya who was the embodiment of all the feminine virtues or noble values. His prayers were addressed to Force Eternal.

So, in answer the Trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesha manifested before him. Atri made his obeisance and revealed the purpose of his penance. The Trinity said the sage, Atri would beget sons in whom will be vested the divinity each of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesha (Shiva). Blessed with the boon Atri went home to his wife, Anusuiya.

in due course of time she produced three sons, namely Chandra, Duttatreya and Durvasa who were carrying the divinity traits of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva respectively. Infact, Durvasa was vested with the divinity of Rudra aspect of Shiva. As a result he was fiery. tempered, unpredictable, irascible and very sharp tongued.

He tested the patience of many, put innumerable curses, created dilemmas for others and treated others to harsh words. In this way he created many a legend to fill volumes of books. Just one episode would reveal how he created dilemmas.

Related Sage Soota, the Ambarisha episode :

Once upon a time an illustrious king named Ambarisha ruled on the earth. He strictly observed a religious regime of fasting on the 11th day of the both lunar phases of a month. At midnight he would break his fast just before the onset of 12th day and fed a host of brahmins in the morning till the noon. On one such Ekadashi (11th) day Durvasa visited the palace of Ambarisha along with hundreds of his disciples at the 11th hour. The king greeted the sage and his retinue.

He expressed joy that on his fast day he would be feasting holy men and earn credits manifold. Durvasa took his disciples to the river for ablutions before the royal feast. There he delayed their return. Meanwhile, the king was getting impatient as he must break his fast before the 12th day began. There was no sight of his holy guest. So, moments before the day ended he put a drop of water in his mouth as a token of breaking his fast to honour his regime. Much later Durvasa returned and was told that the king had to break his fast as the time had been running out.

Durvasa flew into rage. He roared that a host partaking anything before feeding his guests was grave impropriety and indirect insult to the guest. In anger he was about to put a curse on Ambarisha to become ashes. When Vishnu realised the danger to his ardent devotee and released his Sudarshan Chakra to defend the king.

The appearance of divine chakra put Durvasa in a dilemma. A divine voice announced that Chakra was about to behead Durvasa who infact was incarnation of Rudra aspect of Shiva. To avoid the catastrophe Ambarisha prayed to divine chakra to spare the life of Sage Durvasa. The prayer of the king worked. Chakra got pacified and it returned to Lord Vishnu. Durvasa also realised his big folly and departed after blessing the king.

Durvasa had a generous aspect also. He gavel boons and blessings for any good turn done by others to him. Once he sought a private meeting with Lord Rama and wanted no interference. As they were talking Laxmana walked in with some important message that could not wait. For the intrusion Rama renounced his relationship with Laxmana. Durvasa was impressed and he blessed Rama. Similarly, he once visited Dwarka, the abode of Krishna where he was hosted very generously as a royal guest.

The sage was pleased and he granted Krishna a boon which made the latter’s body as solid as an adamant to lay any enemy charges ineffective in battle. Once while bathing, Durvasa lost his loin cloth. He was in a fix when Draupadi threw him a length of material tom off her saree. Durvasa blessed her with a boon that made her saree end never coming to an end. It saved her honour when Kauravas tried to disrobe her in their court.

Tale Of Hanumana Incarnation

Once upon a time Vishnu materialised in his bewitching ‘Mohini’ form to serve a divine purpose. Then Shiva was not in his ascetic element. He happened to cast a glance at Mohini and could not help getting aroused and ejaculating. The shed off semen of Shiva got carried away by seven sages on a leaf and deposited in an ear of Anjana, the daughter of Sage Gautama. The all pervading power of Shiva seed made Anjana pregnant and she delivered a child, a boy.

The boy had incredible powers. Yet a child once he mistook sun for a ripe fruit and flew to it to take it into its mouth. The gods and the sages knew that the boy was manifestation of Shiva power. They prayed to the child to spit out the sun to restore light to the world. Earlier impatient Indra had used his thunderbolt at the boy to rescue the sun. It had dented the chin of the boy and he came to be called ‘Hanumana’ (Han in god language stood for the chin).

After knowing his reality the gods showered boons and blessings on Hanumana. As per his mother’s wish Hanumana went about in Shiva chariot learning various crafts and knowledges of eighteen branches. With the permission of Anjana and Garuda adult Hanumana went to a hill to make friends with deposed monkey king, Sugriva. As a servitor of Rama, Hanumana played a stellar role in Ramayana. On his initiative Rama and Sugriva became allies and the latter regained his kingdom after the former killed Bali.

Sita, the wife of Rama had been abducted by demon king Ravana. Leading a search party Hanumana located her in the capital of Lanka and gave her the message of Rama. To Rama he brought the news of the whereabouts of missing Sita. Rama led a force of monkeys and bears to liberate Sita. On the sea shore Rama planted a Lingam and worshipped it before going into battle against the demons. In the battle, Hanumana killed thousands of demons. At last the victory was made and Hanumana became the dearest devotee of Rama.

Mahesha-Sharada Incarnations

Once Shiva and Parvati were in a very romantic mood. They were cooing, jesting and saying sweet notings to each other. At the gate of the palace of the amorous heaven Bhairava was posted not to let anyone in. After sometime friends of Parvati arrived.

They engaged Shiva in talks. Being in sporting mood Shiva regaled the ladies with some romantic anecdotes. This bantering exercise went’ on for long. Parvati did not like Shiva becoming so friendly with those women. She was getting impatient and jealous. So upset was she that she did not look her divine self.

Parvati in that mood appered more like an ordinary shrew. In anger she tried to walk out of the palace. Bhairava failed to recognise her and barred her exit with his spear. Already in foul mood Parvati flew in rage at the act of Bhairava. She cursed – “You shall take birth as an ordinary human on the earth and live a life as Betal.” Just then, Shiva arrived there. Bhairava prayed to Him to lift the curse of Parvati. Shiva said that her curse could not go wrong. But he promised He would not abandon his faithful.

He and Parvati would also manifest on the earth to give him company. So, Shiva and Parvati took incarnation as Mahesha and Sharda respectively to make the accursed life of Betal bearable. In those manifestations too the Divine Couple performed several miracles, feats and created legends.

Taurus Incarnation

When the gods and demons churned the sea and obtained treasures they fought over the distribution. The demons thought they had been cheated. Although gods won with the help of may a of Vishnu, the demons managed to abduct Vishnu to their Patala world. After keeping him prisoner for some time they were able to win him over or had bewitched his mind with demonic maya.

Vishnu now took to demonic life and had become one of them. He even indulged in carnal pleasures with demonic beauties. Demons were creating great trouble again for the gods who prayed to Brahma. Creator took them to Shiva and revealed how the demons were in the rampage having Vishnu on their side. In reply to their prayers Shiva manifested as a gigantic rogue Taurus and ran down into the bottom world of Patala. There Taurus ran amok trampling upon the demons and killing them in hoards.

Its horns frightened many to death. Vishnu came out to the help of demons and shot several arrows and missiles on Taurus. Taurus gobbled them all like fodder. Suddenly, Vishnu realised that he was up against Shiva himself manifested as Taurus. He began to come to senses and demonic maya started lifting off his mind.

Shiva Taurus asked how a mighty divinity like Vishnu had fallen to demonic maya? Red faced Vishnu stared at the ground. Shiva asked Vishnu to return to his domain. He took away the original Chakra of Vishnu and gave him another one. Then, both of them departed from the demonic world having chastised the demons.

Pippaladaincarnahon

Under mighty king Vrittasura demons were able to defeat the gods. The defeated gods ran to Brahma to seek his protection. Brahma pondered over the problem of the gods and then spoke, “Sage Dadheechi once made deep penance of Shiva and in boon got his bones hardened to diamond toughness. Get his bones and make Varja weapon with them.

That should kill the demon Vrittasura.” Indra and his fellow gods went to the ashram of Sage Dadheechi and made obeisance to him. Sage asked the purpose of their visit. Indra explained, “Holy sir! By the grace of Shiva your bones are diamond hard. Please donate them to us for our protection. Only they can cause death to scourge Vrittasura.”

For Dadheechi nothing was more important than serving the just cause of others. For the benefit of the gods he released his soul from his body. The gods showered flowers on the martyred body. Kamadhenu licked the body till only bones were left. On behalf of the gods Twashta took the bones to celestial craftsman and asked him to make a Vajra weapon with them.

Dadheechi’s wife Suvarcha learnt about the development and cursed the gods to become animals. She prepared to immolate herself on the pyre. A divine voice reminded her that she was pregnant and could not kill the baby. She picked up a stone and hit her bulge with it. She gave premature birth to a divine child. Suvarcha put it under a nearby peepal tree, “Live here my dear. Be kind to all,” and then she jumped into the flames

The gods rushed to the newborn realising that it was incarnation of Shiva. Brahma performed all the birth rights and named the divine baby ‘Pippalada’. After birth ceremonies the gods departed and the baby Pippalada grew at the same spot and made penance for a long time and helped people in many ways.

One day Sage Pippalada was bathing in a holy river. He happened to see a beauteous young woman and desired to have her. He learnt the girl was the daughter of King Anaranya. Sage went to the king and asked for the hand of the princess.

The king wondered how could he give his dear daughter to an ascetic who had nowhere to live and nothing to eat? Sage threatened to destroy the kingdom if his demand was not met. The king had to marry Princess Padma with Sage Pippalada. Padma lived happily as the wife of the sage and produced ten sons. Pippalada put a curse on Shani that if he cast its evil shadow on Shiva devotees upto 16 years of their age he would get burnt to death.

Veshyanadha Incarnation

Related Sage Soota an interesting incarnation episode :
Once upon a time, there lived a prostitute called Mahananda in a village named Nandi. A bewitcher she was. No man could resist her charms. But she was not all evil. An ardent devotee of Shiva she was. After her routine work she used to wash herself clean before sitting for the worship of Shiva-Parvati. In a devotional trance she would sing prayers for hours and often got swayed into dancing for her idols. Even her pets, a monkey and cock would dance with her.

Her exceptional devotion amazed everyone. Even Lord Shiva wanted to put her to a test. One day, he transformed into a rich merchant wearing fine clothes and costly jewellery. He wore beautiful gem-studded bracelet. Toiler house He went. After the customary welcome they sat together.

The prostitute looked greedily at his bracelet. Shiva said, “Lady, if you like it, pay the price and have it.” Mahananda smiled saying, “I am a prostitute. That is my call of dutv. For this bracelet I will serve you as your dutiful wife for three days.”

The merchant accepted the deal. They took a pledge to the deal. Mahananda put her palm on the heart of the merchant and took a vow that she would serve him as a truly dutiful wife for three days. After the deal the merchant gave a gem studded cute Shivalingam to Mahananda for safe keeping saying it was more dear to him than his life.

She kept it in her dance chamber where her pets and valuables were kept. At night fire broke out in that chamber. Mahananda saved her pets but the fire had destroyed the Lingam. Sad were the merchant and the prostitute.

The merchant lamented, “Ah dear! That was more dear to me than my life. Without it the life is meaningless.” And the man jumped into the fire and ended his life to the shock of Mahananda. Then, she remembered she was his avowed dutiful wife for three days. Her duty called her to follow’ him into the fire and die.

She was a woman of word. She donated all her wealth, property, dresses and jewellery to brahmins and prepared to walk into the fire to do her duty. But just before she could do that Shiva materialised there. The sight of her idol deity overwhelmed her and she shed tears. Shiva granted her a place in his domain and transcendental devotedness to Him. He blessed her and gave worldly boons to her as spelled out in her! wish.

Incarnation Dwueshwara

Narrated Soota :
Once, Shiva in Rishabha form had blessed a Kshatriya named Bhadrayu with glory. By the grace of Shiva he defeated his enemies and sat on throne as King Bhadrayu. He married a princess called Simanatini. One day, the royal couple was romancing in the garden.

To test the devotion of the character of Bhadrayu, Shiva and Parvati arrived there as old brahmin couple. They prayed to Bhadrayu to protect them from the tiger that was the stalking them closely. Before the king could gather his weapons and prepare to deal with the beast, the tiger dragged away the old woman.

The old brahmin held Bhadrayu responsible for the loss of his wife due to the lethargy of the king. Bhadrayu asked the old man what he wanted in compensation or to repair the damage? The old man said the king must give his queen to him to compensate for his wife because his incompetence took away his woman. Bhadrayu accepted his verdict.

After a simple ritual he surrendered his queen to the old brahmin and decided to end his life in a pyre. But before he could jump into the flame Shiva revealed His truth and asked him to seek a boon. The king and his queen asked places in Shiva domain for their parents. It was Shiva’s Dwijeshwara incarnation.

Yatinadha-Hansa Manifestations

Once there lived a man and a woman called Ahuka and Ahuki respectively as a devoted couple in Bheel tribe of Adbhuta mountain region. They were very devout and lived religious life. Both were faithfuls of Shiva. One day the man strayed far away in search of game. Shiva went to their hut to test their dedication. Just then the man too returned.

Shiva in the guise of an ascetic said he had lost his way and wanted a shelter for the night. The Bheel couple, gladly agreed to play host. After serving meals the man said the hut was too small to accommodate three to sleep. The guest offered to leave. The hosts would not agree. The wife offered to stay out. The man rejected it.

At last, Ahuka stayed out for the night. In the morning it was discovered that the man had been killed and eaten by the wild beasts. The guest regretted that he was the cause of it. The woman assured him it was not his fault. As the woman Ahuti was about to enter the neral pyre of her husband, Shiva manifested. To the overwhelmed woman He asked to wish for a boon. She just prayed and asked for nothing.

Shiva said He would manifest as a Hansa (swan) in the next life when she would be Damyanti, the daughter of Bheemraja of Vidarbha, Ahuta will be born a prince of Nishada land ruled by Veersena. Nala would be his name. In Swan form, He would unite them as Nala-Damayanti pair. After death the two would earn moksha.

Shiva installed Himself as a Lingam on the spot. The Lingam became famous as Achalesh as a tribute to unwavering faith of the Bheel couple. And it so happened later as prophesied by Him. Shiva had manifested as an ascetic by the name Yatinada. So, that was His Yatinada incarnation followed by Hansa manifestation.

Krishnadarshana Incarnation

In the 9th generation of Manu Shraddhadeva, king Nabhaga was born. Nabhaga was once enlightened by Shiva Himself. When Nabhaga was receiving his education in gurukul, his brothers divided the properties and the kingdom back home. They had usurped the share of Nabhaga. When he reached home from gurukul he asked his brothers for his share. The brothers said that no share was apportioned for him and asked him to talk to the father.

The selfishness of his brothers hurt Nabhaga. He complained to his father. The father consoled him by saying he was now a religious scholar and clever enough to make his own living. The father told him to go to the yajna of Angiras where a default would occur on the sixth day that would bring the exercise to halt. Using his knowledge he could amend the fault and accomplish the yajna. The brahmins while going to heaven shall handover all their earnings to him, the father prophesied.

Nabhaga went to the venue of that special yajna. He recited the mantras correctly that were being incanted wrongly causing malefic signs. The yajna was successfully concluded and the brahmins gained moksha. While departing for’ heaven they gave their entire earnings to Nabhaga. As he was about to collect the money in his bag Shiva materialised there in Krishnadarshana form saying, “Nabhaga! You can’t take that money. It is my property.” They argued.

At last Krishnadarshana suggested he may go to his father Manu Shraddhadeva and let him decide the issue. After hearing the case Shraddhadeva said to his son, “Nabhaga! All the offerings in all yajnas are primarily property of Deity Supreme. You can take anything only with His grace. Pray to Him.”

Nabhaga returned and truthfully reported what his father had said and prayed to Krishnadarshana. The incarnation said, “Yes son, I am the presiding deity of all yajnas. Your father knows. I am very pleased with your humility and truthfulness. I bless you with the sublime enlightenment. You may now take the collection.”

Reminded Soota :
His other incarnation was Avadhooteshwara the story of which I have already revealed in the episode where flame from His third eye became Jullundhar.

Mendicant Varya Incarnation

Continued Soota :

The pregnant queen of King Radha of Vidarbha ran into the forest to save her life when her husband got killed by his enemies. She delivered a male child on the bank of a pond. Tired and thirsty she descended into the pond to drink water when a crocodile gobbled her. The new born lay crying on the bank.

Shiva saw this. He inspired a woman who had her own child at breast go that way. She felt pity at the new born but hesitated to adopt it. Shiva materialised there in the form of a brahmin mendicant named Varya to advise the woman to accept the child and assured her everything will turn out fine.

He revealed to the woman that the mother and the father of the child had committed lapses in their previous lives and had paid penalty. To convince the woman He showed his real Shiva self to her. Now the woman happily took the baby home and named him Dharmagupta who later married and led a happy life.

Once Shiva manifested as Sureswara to save Upamanyu. During His premarital affair with Parvati He took the form of Vaishnava to trick his would-be father and mother-in-law.

Ashwatthama

Guru Drona of Kaurava and Pandava princes had only son, Ashwatthama who had been blessed to him by Shiva. To beget that son Drona had made hard penance to propitiate Shiva. In boon he asked from Shiva a son, courageous, powerful and’ having some divinity seed of Shiva Himself. The wish was granted. Ashwatthama played some good and some very notorious role in Mahabharata war.

Kiraar Incarnation

Shiva’s incarnation Kiraat tribal proved extremely beneficial to Arjuna in Mahabharata war. When Pandavas were serving exile, Sage Vyasa advised Arjuna to make penance to get blessed with divine weapons as war with Kauravas was inevitable to beget justice. Arjuna started his penance at a secluded forest spot to propitiate the most rewarding deity Shiva.

Shiva decided to test the courage and devotion of Arjuna. He asked the demon Mookasura to disturb the concentration of penancing Arjuna. Mooka transformed into a big boar and ran around horribly grunting and stamping. It broke the concentration of Arjuna. Angrily he rose and ran after the offending boar with his bow and arrows.

Meanwhile from the other side Shiva manifested as Kiraat tribal chief with Parvati in the guise of forest woman followed by ganas posing as the tribal folk. Kiraat Shiva had covered his third eye with big red tilak. Kiraat hunter also went after the boar.

The two hunters happened to shoot arrows at the prey at the same time. Both arrows hit the target and the prey fell dead. Kiraat and Arjuna converged on the scene simultaneously. Both claimed that boar was his kill.

The two argued and physically challenged each other. Arjuna was very surprised at the power of a tribal. In anger he shot his mighty arrows at the arrogant tribal. To his surprise the arrows made no impression on Kiraat. He tried to hit the tribal with his famous bow but it dematerialised. Suddenly Arjuna noticed that the garland he had offered to Lingam was in the neck of Kiraat tribal.

The truth dawned on him. In Kiraat he was facing Deity Supreme. Arjuna fell Tat His feet and prayed. Shiva was impressed because even during the fight Arjuna kept invoking Shiva. Deity Supreme manifested in his Shiva form and blessed Arjuna with the ultimate divine weapon ‘Pashupata’.

Twelve Jyotirlingams

Besides the living manifestations, He is vested in Jyotirlingams in the tradition of the original Pillar of luminosity as its symbolic forms. The prominent dozen are :

  • Somnath Jyotirlingam
  • Mallikarjuna Jyotirlingam of Shrisailam
  • Mahakaleshwara Lingam of Ujjain
  • Omkareshwara of Mandhatopura
  • Kedareshwara of Kedamath
  • Namarupeshwara near Pune
  • Vishweshwara of Kashi
  • Trayambakeshwara Lingam of Nashik
  • Nageshwara of Dwarka
  • Vaidyanatha of Puri
  • Rameshwara of Rameshwaram
  • Goomeshwara Lingam.

Blessed are those who know the kathas and glory of these Lingams. Faithfuls who each day think of these Lingams earn blessings. With these dozen manifestations of Deity Supreme included 100 incarnations are detailed in this chapter (Samhita) named Shatarudra Samhita.

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