The Shiva Purana (English translation)

by J. L. Shastri | 1970 | 616,585 words

This page relates “sacred rites of nanda and hymn to shiva” as found in the Shiva-purana, which, in Hinduism, represents one of the eighteen Mahapuranas. This work eulogizes Lord Shiva as the supreme deity, besides topics such as cosmology and philosophy. It is written in Sanskrit and claims to be a redaction of an original text consisting of 100,000 metrical verses.

Chapter 15 - The Sacred rites of Nandā and Hymn to Śiva

Brahmā said:—

1. O sage, once I saw Satī standing near her father along with you. She is, as it were, the essence of the three worlds.

2. When she saw both of us honoured and bowed to by her father, Satī following the conventions of the world, saluted us with joy and reverence.

3. At the end of obeisance, O Nārada, you and I sat in the fine seat provided by Dakṣa. When she humbly bowed again, I spoke to her.

4. O Satī, secure, as your husband, the lord of the universe, (the omniscient Śiva) who desires only you and whom you too desire.

5. O auspicious lady, you shall secure, as your husband, the person who has not taken, does not take, and will not be taking another wife. He will be unlike others.

6. O Nārada, after saying this to Satī we stayed in Dakṣa’s abode for a long time. We were bidden farewell by him and we went to our respective places.

7. On hearing that, Dakṣa became delighted and free from all worries. Thinking that she was a great Goddess, he took her with him.

8. Thus with various charming girlish sports the Goddess who is favourably disposed to her devotees and who had assumed human form out of her own will passed the state of girlhood.

9. After passing her girlhood and reaching the state of early youth she attained beauty in every limb which blazed forth brilliantly.

10. Dakṣa, the lord of worlds, on seeing her blooming in the proper age thought within—“How shall I give my daughter to Śiva?”

11. She too desired to attain Śiva. Her desire grew every day. After knowing her father’s idea, she approached her mother.

12. Satī, the great Goddess of wide intellect, sought the permission of her mother to perform the penance with Śiva as the goal, for the happiness of her mother Vīriṇī.

13. Firmly resolved in her desire to secure Śiva as her husband, she propitiated him in her own house with the permission of her mother.

14. In the month of Āśvina, (September-October), on Nandā Tithis (i.e. first, sixth and eleventh days of lunar fortnight) she worshipped Śiva with great devotion, offering cooked rice with jaggery and salt. She spent a month like that.

15. On the Caturdaśī (14th day) of the month of Kārttika (October-November), she worshipped and meditated on Lord Śiva, offering sweet pies and puddings.

16. On the eighth day in the dark half of Mārgaśīrṣa (November-December), Satī worshipped Śiva with cooked barley and gingelly seeds and spent the other days (in devotion).

17. On the seventh day in the bright half of Pauṣa (December-January) Satī spent the night in keeping awake and worshipped Śiva in the morning with cooked rice and Kṛśara (jaggery mixed with gingelly seeds).

18. She kept awake in the full-moon night of Māgha (January-February) and worshipped Śiva on the banks of the river wearing wet clothes.

19. On the fourteenth day of the dark half of Phālguna (February-March), she kept awake in the night and performed special worship of Śiva with Bilva fruits and leaves in every period of three hours.

20. On the Caturdaśī day of the bright half of Caitra (March-April) she worshipped Śiva with Palāśa and Damana flowers day and night. She spent (the rest of) the month remembering Him.

21. After worshipping Him with cooked barley and gingelly seeds on the third day of the bright half of Māgha (January-February), she spent the month on the products of milk obtained from a cow.

22. After worshipping Him with the offerings of cloths and Bṛhatī flowers on the full-moon night of Jyeṣṭha (May-June) she spent the whole month observing fast.

23. On the Caturdaśī day in the bright half of Āṣāḍha (June-July) wearing a black cloth, she worshipped Rudra with Bṛhatī[1] flowers.

24. On the eighth and fourteenth days in the bright half of Śrāvaṇa (July-August), she worshipped Śiva with holy sacred threads and cloths.

25. After worshipping Śiva with various fruits and flowers on the thirteenth day in the dark half of Bhādra (August-September) she took only water on the fourteenth day.

26. Keeping strict control over her diet and repeating various mantras she worshipped Śiva with different fruits, flowers and leaves fresh and readily available.

27. The Goddess Satī who had assumed human form out of her will, became firmly devoted to the worship of Śiva on every day and month.

28. Concluding all the sacred rites of Nandā, Satī began to meditate on Śiva with concentrated devotion. She was steady and she never thought of any one else.

29. In the meantime, O sage, devas and sages with Viṣṇu and me at their head came to see the penance of Satī.

30. On arrival, Satī was seen by the devas as an achievement in embodied form or as success incarnate. She was completely engrossed in meditating on Śiva. She had reached the stage of the enlightened seers.

31. With palms joined in reverence, the devas paid respects to Satī joyfully. The sages bent down their shoulders in respect. Viṣṇu and others became delighted.

32. Viṣṇu and others and the celestial sages joyously praised Satī’s penance. They were even surprised at that.

33. Bowing again to the Goddess, the sages and devas went immediately to Kailāsa, the great mountain dear to Śiva.

34. The lord Viṣṇu approached Śiva with great joy, accompanied by Lakṣmī and I too along with Śāvitrī, the Goddess of speech.

35. On arrival there, after paying respects to the lord with great excitement we lauded Him with various hymns with palms joined in reverence.

The Devas said:—

36. Obeisance to Thee, O lord, from whom the mobile and the immobile beings have originated. Obeisance to the great Puruṣa, Maheśa, the supreme Īśa and the great Ātman.

37. Obeisance to the primordial seed of every one, the Cidrūpa (one possessed of the form of consciousness), the Puruṣa beyond Prakṛti.

38. Obeisance to Thee who createst this world, by whom this is illuminated, from whom this originated, by whom this is sustained, to whom this belongs and by whom everything is kept under control.

39. We bow to that self-born deity who is beyond this and everything that is great, who is the undepraved great lord, who sees these within Himself.

40. We have sought refuge at His feet who is the supreme Brahman, who is the soul of everyone, who is the greatest witness with unbarred vision and who assumes various forms.

41. Obeisance to Him whose region is not known by devas, sages or Siddhas. How then can other creatures realise it or express it?

42. He is our goal supreme, seeking to see whose region great saints free from attachment perform unmutilated vow of Release.[2]

43. Thou hast no change like death, birth etc. that yields misery, yet by means of āyā thou assumest all these.

44. Obeisance to Thee who art the great Īśa and the performer of miracles. Obeisance to Brahman, the great soul who is far removed from words.

45. Obeisance to the formless Being of immense form, the great, of unlimited power, the lord of the three worlds, the witness of all and all-pervasive.

46. Obeisance to the light of Ātman, richly endowed with the happiness of liberation, of the form of knowledge. Obeisance to Thee, the all-pervasive Lord.

47. Obeisance to the lord of salvation who is accessible only through the cessation of worldly activities. Obeisance to Thee the great Puruṣa, the great lord, the bestower of all.

48. Obeisance to conscious principle in the corporal frame, identical with Ātman, the cause of all perception.

49. Obeisance to the original Prakṛti, the great presiding deity of everything. Obeisance to Thee the great Puruṣa, the great lord, the bestower of all.

50. Obeisance to Thee, the three-eyed, the five-faced and the ever-luminous. Obeisance to Thee who hast no cause and who seest all the qualities of the sense-organs.

51. Obeisance, obeisance to Thee, the cause of the three worlds and salvation. Obeisance to the quick bestower of liberation, and deliverer of those who seek refuge.

52. Obeisance to Thee, the ocean of the knowledge of Vedic texts. Obeisance to Thee, the great lord and the ultimate goal of devotees and possessed of three attributes.

53. Obeisance to Thee, O great lord whose fiery heat of knowledge is latent in the sacrificial churning rod for the production of fire of three attributes. Obeisance to Thee whose form is beyond the reach of fools and who livest for ever in the heart of the wise.

54. Obeisance to the liberator of the individual soul from the noose; to the bestower of salvation to the devotee, to the self-luminous, the eternal, the unwasting, the incessant knowledge.

55. Obeisance to Thee, the self-contemplator, the unchanging, the holder of great suzerainty and glory. Never be ruthless unto them who resort to the four aims of life and desire the cherished final goal. Obeisance to Thee O Siva.

56. Thy devotees never desire anything solely to themselves. They sing the auspicious glory of Thy life.

57. We eulogise Thee, the imperishable supreme Brahman, the omnipresent whose features are unmanifest, who can be attained by the Yoga of the Soul and is complete.

58. O lord of everything, we bow to Thee who art beyond the perception of the sense-organs; who hast no support; who art the support of all; who hast no cause; who art endless; the primordial and the subtle.

59. All the devas, Viṣṇu and others, and the world of mobile and immobile Beings are created by deficient digit with the difference of name and form.

60. Just as the flames of fire and the rays of the sun emerge and submerge so also this current of creation and dissolution.

61. Thou art neither a deva nor an Asura, nor a man nor a brute, nor a brahmin, O lord. Thou art neither a woman nor a man, nor a eunuch. Thou makest nothing either the existent or the non-existent.

62. After all negations whatever remains thou art that. Thou art the maker, the sustainer and the destroyer of the universe; Thou art the soul of the universe. We bow to that lord Śiva.

63. We bow to Thee, the lord of Yoga, whom the Yogins who have destroyed all their actions by means of Yoga, are able to realise in their minds purified by Yoga.

64. Obeisance to Thee whose velocity is unbearable, who hast three Śaktis[3], who art identical with the three Vedas; Obeisance to Thee the delighted protector of immense potentiality.

65. O lord, Thou art impenetrable to the wicked sense-organs; worldly lords cannot reach Thee who art beyond all paths; Obeisance to Thee whose splendour is mystically hidden and who art always engaged in the uplift of the devotees.

66. We bow to Thee, the great lord, whose greatness cannot be surpassed; whose power the confounded fool with egotistic mind can never realise.

Brahmā said:—

67. After eulogising the great lord, all the Devas, Viṣṇu and others, stood silently in front of the lord with their shoulders stooping down with great devotion.

Footnotes and references:

1.

Bṛhatī—a plant, of which the flowers are used in the worship of Śiva.

2.

See Note No 23 P. 45. ‘Salokavrata’ is a vow of release. Sālokya is a stage of mukti—an exemption from further transmigration. The released person lives in the same world with the deity and does not migrate to the other world.

3.

Under this concept Śiva or Sadāśiva is the sole supreme God possessed of three energies which are personified as Sarasvatī, Lakṣmī and Umā—the wives of the triad Brahmā, Viṣṇu and Rudra and are the different manifestations of Śiva Herself.