The Skanda Purana

by G. V. Tagare | 1950 | 2,545,880 words

This page describes Greatness of Someshvara (Soma-ishvara) which is chapter 6 of the English translation of the Skanda Purana, the largest of the eighteen Mahapuranas, preserving the ancient Indian society and Hindu traditions in an encyclopedic format, detailling on topics such as dharma (virtous lifestyle), cosmogony (creation of the universe), mythology (itihasa), genealogy (vamsha) etc. This is the sixth chapter of the Prabhasa-kshetra-mahatmya of the Prabhasa Khanda of the Skanda Purana.

Chapter 6 - Greatness of Someśvara (Soma-īśvara)

[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]

The Devī said:

1-3. The extremely miraculous greatness has been narrated to me. This is unprecedented, O Lord of the chiefs of Devas. Never has it been heard by me before.

Of all the Liṅgas in the Cosmic Egg which have been extolled by you to me, how is it that Someśa has become extremely pre-eminent?

O great Lord, O Lord of Suras, is it the power of the holy place? Hence, O Lord of Suras, narrate it factually to me.

Īśvara said:

4. O lady of excellent countenance, hereafter I shall narrate in detail the greatest secret, the greatness of Someśa and Prabhāsa Kṣetra.

5-6. Of all the Tīrthas, it is the greatest Tīrtha; of all the Vratas it is the greatest Vrata; of all the Jāpyas (Mantras to be muttered) it is the greatest Jāpya; it is the most excellent one of all meditations; it is the greatest Yoga among all Yogas; it is the greatest secret. I shall expound it to you. O my beloved, listen to it with concentrated attention.

7. Someśa is the greatest holy shrine. The Liṅga has five faces. I never leave it. It is the truth. The truth has been mentioned by me.

8. Whatever is the greatest, the most permanent, everlasting and immutable, do know it to be Someśa. Do not get confused in mind.

9-10. Know that Liṅga in Prabhāsa as one that is above fear, free from impurities, eternal, independent, not having (needing) another support, unsullied, devoid of ramifications, free from attachment and devoid of torments. It is well-established at Prabhāsa. It is the final beatitude, incomprehensible, pleasing to the mind and devoid of ailments.

11. That is the eternal, the cause of the universe, the destroyer of (Dakṣa’s) sacrifice, Lord with faces everywhere (in all directions), the auspicious subtle (principle) identical with all, the primordial deity.

12. It is comprehensible only through self-realization. It is devoid of mental worries. It is devoid of birth and death. It is pure and absolute both within and without.

13. It is the object of self-realization. It is beyond the ken of eulogy. It is partless, the soul devoid of impurities. It is the manifest illumination of perfect knowledge.

14. Know that the Liṅga at Prabhāsa is of such a nature, O beautiful goddess. It is devoid of space-lessness. It is sound that is perceptible when all (other worldly) sounds cease.

15. It is unsullied and free from impurities. It is the Lord, the Lord of Devas. It is the soul of Suras. It is beyond reasoning. It is beyond the perview of imagination.

16. It is the object of mental view. It is stationed both within and without. Know it to be Praṇava in the form of Liṅga at Prabhāsa.

17. The great soul is stable (unmoved by any pulsation or variation), beyond all perception of bliss. It is the pure and perfect knowledge on the path of survey of the world(?).

18. It is stationed on the path of special spiritual knowledge (?). It is designated by its innumerable forms. It can be comprehended through the concept of its own existence (?). It is beyond existence and characterization.

19. It is devoid of (beyond) development, display etc. of words. It is Śiva free from identity with the worldly units. It is stationed under the survey of knowledge and the knowable? It is devoid of fallacious reasoning.

20. It is present in the Śabda in the mystic (Yogic) Cakra named Anāhata. It originates from the groups of Śabda (sound) etc(?). Know Someśvara to be thus. It is in the form of a Liṅga in Prabhāsa.

21. It is quiescent. It is present in Śabdabrahman. Its place (resort) is beyond the ken of words. It is the object of that which surpasses everything. It is present in the path of meditation of all (?).

22. It is beginningless. It is divine and unswerving. It is the object of that which is beyond all valid testimony. It exists both above and below. It is stationed in the body and so is called Jīva.

23. (In Yogic meditation) it is stationed at the end of twelve Aṅgulas which is the extreme reach of the breadth both within (the heart) and outside (when exhaled). It is present at the rise (beginning) and end of Prāṇa and Apāna (inhalation and exhalation). It is identical with the soul (power) of sense- organs yet it is imperceptible (beyond the grasp of senses). It is blemishless and all-pervading.

24. It is beyond Svara (vowels) etc. and Vyañjana (consonant). It is beyond letters of alphabet etc. It is not the object of oral expression. It is in the form of half of Ahaṃkāra (?).

25. It is beyond the reach of logical argumentation or imagination. It cannot be expressed orally. It is devoid of time and act of reckoning. It is devoid of sound and movement. It is gentle. It is beyond the body, greater than the greatest.

26. It is beyond the grasp of (five) elements (or living beings). It is beyond existence and non-existence. It is extremely subtle and incomprehensible. It originates from the five pentads etc.

27. It is immeasurable. It has infinite names (or it is designated as infinite). It is everlasting. It can assume any form it likes. It is the source of origin of all living beings. It originates like a sprout from seed.

28. It is pervasive. It has all desired names. It is imperishable and extremely great. It is present in the setup of the subtle and the gross. It is both manifest and unmanifest. It is eternal.

29. It is devoid of great periods of time called Kalpa and ends of Kalpas. It is great without beginning and end. It is the great element. It has a huge body. It is auspicious and Nirvāṇabhairava (terrific though quiescent).

30. Understand Sadāśiva thus in the form of the Liṅga at Prabhāsa. He is devoid of yogic activity. He is the conqueror of Mṛtyu (death) and has no beginning.

31. He is devoid of all torments. He is Śiva who pervades everything all round. He is unmanifest and eternal, more than the greatest. He is absolutely one without any duality.

32. It is not overwhelmed by another refulgence for the residents of Prabhāsa Kṣetra. He has excessive self-luminosity and refulgence. He is Hara who surpasses the splendour of all.

33. He is Lord Īśāna worthy of being the refuge. He is Oṃkāra in the form of Śiva. He is Mahādeva, the Lord of Devas. He is five-faced and bull-emblemed.

34. He is free from impurities. He is beyond the ken of the mind. He can be comprehended through Bhāva (emotion, devotion). He is incomparable. He is always quiescent. He is the trident-armed Virūpākṣa (Three-eyed Lord) having matted hairs.

35. He is stationed in the middle of the lotus (the Yogic plexus) of the heart. He is void-formed and unsullied. Understand Sadāśiva thus in the form of the Liṅga at Prabhāsa.

36. That Lord who is greater than the greatest is glorified by the name of Haṃsa and by the name of Nāḍa. He is stationed in this holy spot, O goddess of excellent holy vows.

37. This primordial form, the divine form of the Ātman has been comprehended by me through the power of Yoga and this divine (form of the) soul has been narrated to you, O goddess.

38. He is stationed in the Ṛgveda in the forenoon. He is stationed in the Yajus in the midday. He is stationed in the Sāman in the afternoon. He is stationed in the Atharvan at the beginning of night.

39. I know this great Puruṣa of the brilliance of the sun beyond darkness. Death will not overtake if one knows it. There is no other pathway for the people.

40. Thus the great power of Someśaliṅga has been partially narrated to you. The deity cannot be extolled even by one endowed with many thousands of mouths in the course of many (innumerable) years.

41. A Brāhmaṇa, a Kṣatriya, a Vaiśya and even a Śūdra will become rid of all sins if he reads this. He shall attain all desires.

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