Lord Shiva

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Lord Shiva, the third Hindu deity of the triad of the great deities is known as the Destroyer of evil but also has the aspect of regeneration.

He is considered as the Supreme God, one of the three most influential denominations in Hinduism.

Lord Shiva is generally worshipped in the form of lingam. He is described as an omniscient yogi, who lives an austere life on Mount Kailash, as well as a householder with a wife Parvati and two sons, Ganesha and Kartikeya. Lord Shiva has many generous as well as formidable forms. He is often depicted as engrossed in deep meditation or as the Cosmic Dancer. In brutal aspects, he is often depicted killing demons.

Lord Shiva is ‘shakti’ or power. He is known by many names such as Mahadeva, Mahayogi, Pashupati, Nataraja, Bhairava, Vishwanath, Bhava, Bhole Nath and many more. In many holy texts and puranas, Deity Shiva is also called Paramatma (Supreme soul). The Sanskrit word Shiva means “pure and destroyer” i.e. “the One who is not affected by three Gunas of Prakrati (Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas)” or “the One who purifies everyone by the very utterance of His name.” Lord Shiva is considered to be the third Hindu God after Lord Brahma and Vishnu who has no Aadi or Anta i.e. no beginning or end. As a proper name it means “The Auspicious One”, used as a name for Rudra.

Deity Shiva is said to be at the core of the centrifugal force of the universe, because of His responsibility for death and destruction. Unlike the Lord Brahma, the Creator, or Lord Vishnu, the Preserver, Lord Shiva is the dissolving force in life. Since Deity Shiva is regarded as a grand destructive power, to numb His negative potentials He is fed with opium and is also called as Bhole Shankar, the one who is unaware of the world. Therefore, on Maha Shivratri, the night of Lord Shiva worship, devotees, especially the menfolk, prepare an exhilarating drink called ‘Thandai’ (made from cannabis, almonds, and milk) , sing songs in praise of the Mahadev and dance to the rhythm of the drums.

A very interesting story is behind birth of Lord Shiva. Once Brahma and Vishnu both were in dispute about who of them is more dominant. That time one great glowing pillar appeared whose roots and branches spread over view into the earth and sky. Now both the God Brahma and Vishnu started to locate the ends of that pillar. Lord Brahma turned into goose and flawed up to find the top of the pillar, while Lord Vishnu turned into a boar and dogged into the earth to look for its roots. After being unsuccessful they both came back and saw that there is a Lord Shiva appeared from an opening in the pillar. Recognizing Lord Shiva’s great power, they both agreed that there is the third supremacy who rules the universe.

A different God

The genuine picture of Shiva is different from other gods: his hair heaped high on the top of his head, with a bow tucked into it and the river Ganges tumbling from his hairs. Around his neck is a coiled serpent representing to Kundalini or the profound vitality inside life. He holds a trident in his left hand which is bound the “damroo” (little leather drum). He sits on a tiger skin and on his right is a water pot. He wears the “Rudraksha” beads and his entire body is smeared with ash.

Mahadev is known by his various attributes:

  • Deity Shiva has the third eye on His forehead which is the eye of wisdom that looks beyond the visible. It is related with His immense energy, which destroys the evil doers and sins.
  • Lord Shiva is beyond the powers of death. He swallowed the poison Kalketu for the well being of the Universe.
  • The flow of His matted hair represents Him as the Lord of wind or Vayu, who is the form of breath present in all living beings.
  • Lord Shiva bears on His head the crescent of the fifth day moon. It shows the power of Soma, the sacrificial offering, which is the representative of moon. The Crescent also depicts His control over time.
  • The river Ganga, the holiest of the holy rivers, flows from the matted hair of Deity Shiva. Lord Shiva allowed an outlet to the great river to pass through the earth and bring purifying water to human being.
  • The drum in the hand of Lord Shiva is the originator of the universal world, which is the source of all the language and expression.
  • Lord Shiva smears His body with cemetery ashes that points the philosophy of the life and death and the fact that death is the ultimate reality of the life.
  • The tiger is the vehicle of Shakti, the goddess of power and force. The tiger skin that He wears represents victory over every force. By sitting on tiger skin, Lord Shiva indicates that He has conquered lust.
  • Lord Shiva’s Rudraksha is supposed to have medicinal properties.
  • The three head of Shiva’s Trishul depicts three functions of the triad – the creation, the sustenance and the destruction.
  • The cosmic dance of Lord Shiva symbolizes everlasting movement of the universe. The rhythm of the dance sets the universe in motion. The circle of flames which is seen around Shiv Shankar is pure energy as well as the fire of cremation. Simultaneously it is the symbol of the holy mantra, Om, which is the basic sound of creation.
  • Lord Shiva’s name Rudra reflects His fearsome qualities. Rudra means fierce and wild who can destroy when His anger cannot be controlled.

Shiva as we know him today imparts many properties to the Vedic god Rudra, and both Shiva and Rudra are seen as the same identity in Hindu scriptures. The two names are used synonymously. Rudra, the god of the thundering storm, is generally depicted as per the element he shows to as a fierce, destructive god.

The most aged surviving text of Hinduism is the Rig Veda, which is dated to amid 1700 and 1100 BC based on linguistic and philological evidence. A god named Rudra is described in the Rig Veda. The name Rudra is still used as a name for Shiva. In Rig Veda 2.33, he is depicted as the “Father of the Rudras”, a gathering of storm gods. Moreover, the Rudram, a most holy hymns of Hinduism found both in the Rig and the Yajur Vedas and addressed to Rudra, calls him as Shiva in a few occasions, but the term Shiva is utilized as an appellation for the god Indra, Mitra and Agni ordinarily. Since Shiva denotes pure, the epithet is potentially used to portray a nature of these gods instead of to recognize any of them with the God Shiva.

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Roles and power of Lord Shiva

lord shiva imagesLord shiva is an extremely versatile god having numerous role and strength. On the off chance that we will talk of his destroyer part lord shiva frequently chases cemeteries, wearing a hood of snakes and a garland of skulls. A band of alarming demos, wanting blood, goes with him. Shiva can help human and in addition god also. Lord Shiva acts a heavenly judge who does not show any mercy to the evil. Lord Shiva acquires the spiritual power from times of meditation – profound however – in the Himalayas. Whenever god Shiva does dance, he speaks to truth, and by dancing he banishes lack of awareness and aides ease the misery of his follower. As indicated by one myth, Shiva protected the gods and the world from devastation by drinking the poison of Vasuki, a serpent the gods used to create the water of life. Drinking the poison element made Shiva’s neck blue, and he is frequently demonstrated that way in art work. One of Shiva’s most prominent services to the world was to agreeable the holy Ganges River, which flows out of the Himalayas. At one time, the Ganges passed just through the heavens, leaving the earth dry. After an sensible man changed the way of the river, it turned into a boiling over torrent and threatened to flood the earth. Shiva stood underneath the river stream and let its waters wind through his hair to cool its flow

In one more story, the gods were endangered by demons and asked Shiva for assist. He decided to support them on the clause that the gods lend him some of their own power. However, after defeating the demons, Shiva denied to return back the gained power of other gods. As a consequence, he emerges as most powerful being in the universe. Shiva also has many arms that make him unconquerable, including a club with a skull on the end, a sword and spear made from thunderbolts, and a bow made from a rainbow.

Jyotirlinga temples of Lord Shiva


Legend of Shiva Linga

What is behind Lord Shiva being symbolized to as a “Linga?” The well known view is that the Shiva Linga or Lingam symbolizes to the phallus, the insignia of the generative power in nature. As per Swami Sivananda, this is a serious error, as well as a grave blunder.

In Sanskrit, Linga implies an “mark” or an symbol, which indicates a surmising. Hence the Shiva Linga is a symbol of Lord Shiva – a mark that helps to remember the Omnipotent Lord, which is unstructured.

Shiva Linga talks with the devotee in the unmistakable language of silence, and it is just the outward symbol of the shapeless being, Lord Shiva, who is the undying soul situated in the chambers of your heart, who is your in-inhabitant, your deepest self or “Atman,” and who is indistinguishable with the supreme ‘Brahman’.

The very old scripture Linga Purana says that the prime Linga is without smell, color, taste, and so on., and is talked about as “Prakriti” or Nature itself. In the post-Vedic period, the Linga got to be symbolical of the generative power of Lord Shiva.

The Linga is resemble to an egg, and represents to the “Brahmanda” or the universe sized egg. Linga connotes that the creation is effected by the union of “Prakriti” and “Purusha,” the male and the female forces of Nature. Linga additionally connotes “Satya,” “Jnana” and “Ananta” – Truth, information and Infinity.

A Shiva Linga comprises of three sections, the most lowest of which is known as the ‘Brahma-Pitha,’ the center one, the ‘Vishnu-Pitha’ and the uppermost one, the ‘Shiva-Pitha’.

Names of lord Shiva

Lord Shiva is supreme god in hindu mythology. He is known by many names. The Shiv purana explains 108 names of God Shiva. We are providing list of each name with their meaning in below table.

Lord Shiva Name Meaning
Aashutosh One who fulfills wishes instantly
Aja Unborn
Akshayaguna God with limitless attributes
Avyayaprabhu Imperishable Lord
Bhairav Lord of terror
Bhalanetra One who has an eye in the forehead
Bholenath Kind hearted Lord
Bhooteshwara Lord of ghosts and evil beings
Bhudeva Lord of the earth
Bhutapala Protector of the ghosts
Chandrapal Master of the moon
Chandraprakash One who has moon as a crest
Dayalu Compassionate
Devadeva Lord of the Lords
Anagha Without any fault
Anantadrishti Of infinite vision
Augadh One who revels all the time
Dhanadeepa Lord of Wealth
Dhyanadeep Icon of meditation and concentration
Dhyutidhara Lord of Brilliance
Digambara One who has the skies as his clothes
Durjaneeya Difficult to be known
Durjaya Unvanquished
Gunagrahin Acceptor of Gunas
Gurudeva Master of All
Hara Remover of Sins
Jagadisha Master of the Universe
Jaradhishamana Redeemer from Afflictions
Jatin One who has matted hair
Kailas One Who Bestows Peace
Kailashadhipati Lord of Mount Kailash
Kailashnath Master of Mount Kailash
Kamalakshana Lotus-eyed Lord
Kantha Ever-Radiant
Gangadhara Lord of River Ganga
Girijapati Consort of Girija
Kapalin One who wears a necklace of skulls
Khatvangin One who has the missile khatvangin in his hand
Kundalin One who wears earrings
Lalataksha One who has an eye in the forehead
Lingadhyaksha Lord of the Lingas
Lingaraja Lord of the Lingas
Mahabuddhi Extremely intelligent
Mahadeva Greatest God
Mahakala Lord of All Times
Mahamaya Of great illusions
Mahamrityunjaya Great victor of death
Mahanidhi Great storehouse
Mahashaktimaya One who has boundless energies
Mahayogi Greatest of all Gods
Mahesha Supreme Lord
Lokankara Creator of the Three Worlds
Lokapal One who takes care of the world
Maheshwara Lord of Gods
Nagabhushana One who has serpents as ornaments
Nataraja King of the art of dancing
Nilakantha The one with a blue throat
Nityasundara Ever beautiful
Nrityapriya Lover of Dance
Parameshwara First among all gods First among all gods
Paramjyoti Greatest splendor
Pashupati Lord of all living beings
Pinakin One who has a bow in his hand
Pranava Originator of the syllable of OM
Priyabhakta Favorite of the devotees
Omkara Creator of OM
Palanhaar One who protects everyone
Priyadarshana Of loving vision
Pushkara One who gives nourishment
Pushpalochana One who has eyes like flowers
Ravilochana Having sun as the eye
Rudra The terrible
Rudraksha One who has eyes like Rudra
Sadashiva Eternal God
Sanatana Eternal Lord
Sarveshwara Lord of All Gods
Shambhu Abode of Joy
Shankara Giver of Joy
Shiva Always Pure
Shoolin One who has a trident
Shrikantha Of glorious neck
Shrutiprakasha Illuminator of the Vedas
Shuddhavigraha One who has a pure body
Sarvacharya Preceptor of All
Sarvashiva Always Pure
Sarvatapana Scorcher of All
Sarvayoni Source of Everything
Skandaguru Preceptor of Skanda
Suragana Having Gods as attendants
Sureshwara Lord of All Gods
Swayambhu Self-Manifested
Tejaswani One who spreads illumination
Trilochana Three-Eyed Lord
Trilokpati Master of all the Three Worlds
Tripurari Enemy of Tripura
Someshwara Lord of All Gods
Sukhada Bestower of happiness
Suprita Well pleased
Trishoolin One who has a trident in his hands
Umapati Consort of Uma
Vachaspati Lord of Speech
Vedakarta Originator of the Vedas
Veerabhadra Supreme Lord of the Nether World
Vishalaksha Wide-eyed Lord
Vishveshwara Lord of the Universe
Vajrahasta One who has a thunderbolt in his hands
Varada Granter of Boons
Vrishavahana One who has bull as his vehicle


Shaivism is the most aged of the four noteworthy sects of Hinduism, the others being Vaishnavism, Shaktism and Smartism. Devotees of Shaivism, called “Shaivas”, furthermore “Saivas” or “Saivites”, worship Shiva as the Supreme Being. Shaivas accept that Shiva is All and in all, the creator, preserver, destroyer, revealer and concealer of all that is. The tantric Shaiva custom comprises of the Kapalikas, Kashmir Shaivism and Shaiva Siddhanta. The Shiva MahaPurana is one of the pur??as, a type of Hindu religious writings, committed to Shiva. Shaivism is widespread all through India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka, generally. Areas notable for the excercise of Shaivism incorporate parts of Southeast Asia, particularly Malaysia, Singapore, and Indones.

Famous Lord Shiva Temples

  • Jambukeshwar – Tiruchirapalli, Tamil Nadu
  • Arunachaleswar – Thiruvannamalai, Tamil Nadu
  • Kalahastheeswar – Srikalahasti, Andhra Pradesh
  • Ekambareswar – Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu
  • Nataraja – Chidambaram, Tamil Nadu
  • Tarkeshwar Ji – Jaipur, Rajasthan
  • Amararama – Amaravathi, Aandra Predesh
  • Draksharama – Draksharama, Andhra Pradesh
  • Somarama – Bhimavaram, Andhra Pradesh
  • Ksheerarama – Palakollu, Andhra Pradesh
  • Bhimarama – Samalkota,
  • Lingaraja Temple – Bhubaneswar, Odisha
  • Natarajar Temple – Chidambaram, Tamil Nadu
  • Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple – Madurai, Tamil Nadu
  • Nellaiappar Temple – Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu
  • Sri Vadaranyeswarar Temple – Thiruvalangadu
  • Vemulawada, Karimnagar district, Andhra Pradesh
  • Kapila Theertham, Chittoor district, Andhra Pradesh
  • Kaleshwaram, Karimnagar district, Andhra Pradesh
  • Keesaragutta, Ranga Reddy district, Andhra Pradesh
  • Ramappa temple, Warangal district, Andhra Pradesh
  • Sukreswar Temple, Guwahati, Assam
  • Sivadol, Sivasagar, Assam
  • Mangueshi Temple of Mangesh Maharudra, Goa
  • Nagesh Maharudra of Bandora, Goa
  • Ramnath,temple at Bandora Ramnathi, Goa
  • Saptakoteshwar, Narve, Goa
  • Mahadev Temple, Tambdi Surla, Goa
  • Vimleshwar Temple, Rivona
  • Bhavnath, Junagadh, Gujarat
  • Koteshwar, Kutch, Lakhpat, Kutch District
  • Amarnath temple, Amarnathji, Jammu and Kashmir
  • Kadri Manjunath Temple, Mangalore,Karnataka
  • Murudeshwara, Uttara Kannada district,Karnataka
  • Dharmasthala Manjunatha Temple, Dakshina Kannada, Karnataka
  • Srikanteshwara Temple, Nanjangud, Mysore District, Karnataka
  • Kotilingeshwara, Kammasandra, Kolar District, Karnataka
  • Gokarna, Kumta, Uttara Kannada District, Karnataka
  • Maheswaram Temple,Chenkal,Trivandrum, Kerala
  • Rajarajeshwara Temple, Taliparamba, Kerala
  • Kadri Manjunath Temple, Mangalore, Dakshina Kannada
  • Murudeshwara, Uttara Kannada district, Karnataka
  • Dharmasthala Manjunatha Temple, Dakshina Kannada, Karnataka
  • Srikanteshwara Temple, Nanjangud, Mysore District, Karnataka
  • Kotilingeshwara, Kammasandra, Kolar District, Karnataka
  • Gokarna, Kumta, Uttara Kannada District
  • Rajarajeshwara Temple, Taliparamba, Kerala
  • Vadakkunnathan Temple, Thrissur, Kerala

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