The Shiva Purana

by J. L. Shastri | 1950 | 616,585 words

This page relates “description of fun and frolic” 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.

Disclaimer: These are translations of Sanskrit texts and are not necessarily approved by everyone associated with the traditions connected to these texts. Consult the source and original scripture in case of doubt.

Chapter 50 - Description of fun and frolic

[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]

Brahmā said:—

1. O Nārada, thereafter at the bidding of Śiva, I carried out the concluding ceremonies of the wedding of Śiva and Pārvatī joyously through the sages.

2. Their ceremonial head-bath[1] was respectfully gone through. The brahmins showed the Pole star Dhruva[2] with respect.

3. Thereafter the rite of Hṛdayālambhana[3] was performed. O great brahmin, then Svastipāṭha[4] was jubilantly celebrated.

4. At the behest of the brahmins, Śiva applied Red powder[5] on the head of Pārvatī. The lustre of Pārvatī at that time was beyond description and very wondrous.

5. Thereafter at the bidding of the brahmins both sat on the same cushion and attained such a lustre as accentuated joy in the hearts of the devotees.

6. O sage, then they returned to their apartment and, at my behest performed the rite of Saṃsrava Prāśana[6], of wonderful sportive nature that they were.

7. When the sacrificial rites in marriage ceremony were thus concluded duly, lord Śiva gave the Pūrṇapātra[7] to me, the creator of the worlds.

8. Śiva then made the gift of cows to the presiding priest. Other gifts of auspicious nature were also made.

9. He gave the brahmins a hundred gold pieces each. A crore of gems and other articles were distributed among the people as gifts.

10. The Gods, mobile and immobile creatures, rejoiced much. Shouts of victory rose up.

11. Auspicious sounds of music were heard everywhere. The sound of the musical instruments was pleasing and increased the joy of everyone.

12. Viṣṇu accompanied by me, all the gods and sages took leave of the mountain and returned to their abodes.

13. The ladies in the city of the mountain then took Śiva and Pārvatī to the abode of Kubera.

14. There several social customs and conventions were gone through by the ladies. All round, there was great jubilation.

15. Then the couple, benefactors of the people, were led near the bed chamber. It was exquisitely decorated according to convention.

16. The ladies of the city of Himavat approached them and performed the customary auspicious rites.

17. Shouting cries of victory they untied the knot.[8] They were smiling and ogling at one another with hairs standing on their ends due to pleasure.

18-20. Entering the bedchamber and gazing at lord Śiva, the beautiful damsels were much fascinated and they praised their good luck. He was gorgeously dressed in fine clothes. He was bedecked in gemset ornaments. He appeared to be in the prime of youth. He fascinated the ladies with charming loveliness. He was smiling gently and glancing at everyone lovingly.

21-23. Then the sixteen celestial ladies arrived there and saw the couple with great respect. They were Sarasvatī, Lakṣmī, Sāvitrī, Jāhnavī, Aditi, Śacī, Lopāmudrā, Arundhatī, Ahalyā, Tulasī, Svāhā, Rohiṇī, Vasundharā, Śatarūpā, Saṃjñā and Rati.

24. There were several virgins of the gods, Nāgas, and the sages. They were charming and attractive. Who can enumerate them?

25. A gemset throne was offered to Śiva who sat on it joyously. The celestial ladies made these sweet witty remarks to Him one by one.

Sarasvatī said:—

26. O great lord, Satī who was more than your life to you has now joyously rejoined you. O lover, seeing the face of your beloved of moonlike splendour, cast off the heat of your distress.

27. Spend your time, O lord of time, in the close embrace of Satī. Thanks to my fervent wish, there will be no separation at any time between you both.

Lakṣmī said:—

28. O lord of gods, leave off your shyness. Take Satī to your bosom and stand close to her. Why do you feel shy of her without whom your vital airs may go off.

Sāvitrī said:—

29. O Śiva, give the sweets to Śatī and eat them yourself. Do not be in a flutter. Perform Ācamana and offer her betel leaves along with camphor.

Jāhnavī said:—

30. Take hold of the hand of your beloved wife glittering with gold and stroke her hair. There is no higher pleasure at the hands of her lover to a loving maiden than this.

Aditi said:—

31. At the conclusion of the meal, for the purity of the mouth, please give water. The love of this pair is very rare to be seen.

Śacī said:—

32. Why should you be shy of your beloved for whom you lamented and roamed here and there always keeping her in your heart?

Lopāmudrā said:—

33. O Śiva, a duty shall be performed by women in the bedchamber after the meal. Hence give Tāmbūla (betel leaves with spices) to Śivā and go to bed.

Arundhatī said:—

34. This lady was not intended at first to be given to you. But it is after my efforts that she has been given to you. Hence you must have a good dalliance with her.

Ahalyā said:—

35. Leave off your old age. Be extremely youthful so that Menā whose mind is fixed in her daughter may approve of you.

Tulasī said:—

36. Satī was formerly abandoned by you. Kāma too was burnt. Then O lord, how is it that Vasiṣṭha is sent as an emissary now.

Svāhā said:—

37. Now, O great lord, be steady in the words of women. There is a duty for women after marriage, maturity and loftiness of demeanour.

Rohiṇī said:—

38. O lord, expert in erotic science and technique, fulfil the desire of Pārvatī. Loving that you are, try to cross the ocean of the love of your beloved.

Vasundharā said:—

39. O lord, the knower of innermost thoughts, you know the emotions of love-oppressed maidens. It is not only the husband that she cherishes in her heart but she keeps the supreme lord too there for ever.

Śatarūpā said:—

40. A hungry person will not be satisfied until he partakes of a sweet hearty meal. O Śiva do everything whereby the woman will be satiated.

Saṃjñā said:—

41. Now please send off Śiva along with Pārvatī to a secluded spot after making the bed, giving them betal and keeping the gem-bedecked lamp ready near by.

Brahmā said:—

42. On hearing these words of the women, lord Śiva, who was free from aberrations and was the supreme preceptor of great Yogins spoke to them.

Śiva said:—

43. O dignified ladies, do not utter such words to me. You are the chaste mothers of the worlds, how do you speak so trivially in regard to your son?

Brahmā said:—

44. On hearing the words of Śiva, the celestial ladies were ashamed. In their excitement they became motionless like dolls in a picture.

45. Eating the sweets and performing Ācamana lord Śiva was much delighted. In the company of His wife He chewed the betal with camphor.

Footnotes and references:


The bride is sprinkled on her head. The ceremony renders the bride free from physical troubles and sanctifies her for the married life.


In the night the bridegroom shows to the bride the polar star—a performance suggestive of firmness in the conjugal life.


The husband touches the heart of the bride reaching over her right shoulder. The heart is the centre of feelings. By touching it the husband symbolically tries to rouse them and make them flow out to meet his own heart and thus unite them in the world of love.


Vājasaneyisaṃhitā (of Śuklayajurveda) 25.19 and Ibid 25.14. These verses are usually recited on auspicious occasions.


The printing of red lead on the head of the bride by the bridegroom is the most striking feature of the present day marriage ceremonies, nowhere mentioned in the Gṛhyasūtras. The later Paddhatis, however, refer to this custom. Cf. Gadādhara on P.G.S. 1.8.9.

“atrācārātstriyaḥ sindūradānādi kurvanti |”


It is the ceremonial licking up of the remains of libation.


At the end of the nuptial ceremony, a vessel full of raw rice grains is given to the officiating priest who conducts the nuptials. A cow, as a ceremonial gift, is also offered along with some hard cash and clothes.


Tying together, so as to form a knot, the garments of the bride and bridegroom at the commencement of the marriage ceremony is called Granthibandhana while untying the same after the ceremony is called Granthinirmocana.

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