The Shiva Purana (English translation)

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

This page relates “glory of bhasma” 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 28 - The glory of Bhasma

The sages said:—

1-2. We wish to hear these things in the proper order. What was it mentioned by the lord while pacifying the goddess? He had said that the universe is in the form of Agnīṣoma. He had said that it was in the form of words and their meanings. He also mentioned lordship has command as its core. You are that command.

Vāyu said:—

3. The body of Rudra which is fiery and terrible is called fire. The moon pertains to Śakti. It is nectarine and is the body of Śakti that causes calmness.

4. What is called Amṛta is Pratiṣṭhā. Tejas is Vidyā and Kalā itself. In all the subtle elements the two are predominant, viz, Rasa and Tejas.

5. Tejas functions in two ways, in the form of the sun and of fire. Rasa too functions in the form of the moon and of water.

6. Tejas is lightning etc. Rasa is sweet etc. The universe of the mobile and immobile beings, is sustained by Tejas and Rasa.

7. Amṛta issues from Agni. Agni increases through Amṛta. The powerful Agnīṣoma is beneficent to the universe.

8. The luxuriant growth of Vegetation is for the Havis. The rain contributes to the flourishing growth of vegetation. So Havis is the outcome of rain, the universe is sustained by Agnīṣoma.

9. The Agni blazes upwards as far as the great Amṛta of Soma. The Amṛta of Soma flows as far as the support of Agni.

10. That is why the Kālāgni stays below and the Śakti upwards. The upward blazing is till burning and the downward flow is till complete drenching.

11. The Kālāgni supported by Ādhāra Śakti proceeds upwards. Similarly Soma having its region in Śiva-Śakti flows downwards.

12. Śivā sustains Śakti from below and Śiva is Śaktidhara (upholder of Śakti) above. Thus there is nothing not pervaded by Śiva and Śakti.

13. Frequently the world consumed by fire is reduced to ashes. They call it Agnivīrya because Bhasma constitutes the powerful part of the same.

14. He who dusts himself with Bhasma repeating the mantra “Agniriti”[1] etc., if bound becomes free from bondage.

15. Bhasma which is Agnivīrya when drenched with Soma is conducive to the lordship of Prakṛti without having recourse to Yogic union.

16. But being drenched all round by having recourse to Yogic union the Bhasma may turn one back from lordship by the shower of Amṛta belonging to Śakti.

17. Hence for the conquest of death the drenching with Amṛta shall be perpetual. How and wherefore shall one die if the nectarine contact of Śiva and Śakti is acquired?

18. He who knows the secret of burning and drenching as mentioned is never reborn after leaving the world, the region of Agnīṣoma.

19. He who burns his body with Śaivite fire and drenches it with the nectar of Śakti and Soma attains immortality.

20. It was after keeping this in mind that the lord had said—“The universe is in the form of Agnīṣoma”.

Footnotes and references:

1.

See p. 1730 note 157.