Hindu God - Lord Shiva

by V.A.Ponmelil (All rights reserved by the author)

Lord Shiva is the God of recreation in the cyclic process of creation, preservation, dissolution and recreation of the universe. He is also referred as the destructor. His cosmic role is to balance between the opposing forces of good and evil. When this balance gets disturbed, Lord Shiva dissolves the universe for the creation of next cycle.

Lord Shiva protects the souls from the pain and suffering of the World. He is the lord of mercy and compassion protecting the devotees from evil forces such as lust, greed, and anger. He is believed to grant boons, bestows grace and awakens wisdom in his devotees.

The unclad body of Shiva symbolizes the transcendental aspect of the Lord. The ashes on the unclad body of the Lord represent the fact that Shiva is the source of the entire universe which emanates from him. He transcends the physical phenomena and is not affected by it.

The three matted locks on the head of the Lord signify that integration of the physical, mental and spiritual energies is the ideal of yoga.

Ganga on the head of Shiva symbolizes that the lord destroys sin, removes ignorance, and bestows knowledge, purity and peace on the devotees.

The crescent moon signifies the time cycle of creation to the end in which Shiva is beyond the scope of time.

The third eye is the eye of wisdom denoting the spiritual knowledge and power. When Shiva opens his eyes, cycle of creation starts and when he closes, the universe dissolves for creation of new cycle. His half-open eyes indicate that creation is in cyclic process with no beginning and no end. They also symbolize his yogic posture.

Kundalas represent Shiva and Shakti forms of creation apart from the fact that the lord is beyond an ordinary perception.

The snake symbolizes the yogic power of Shiva as it hoards nothing, carries nothing, builds nothing, lives on air alone for a long time, and lives in mountains and forests. The snake looking towards the right side of the Lord signifies that the Lord's eternal laws of reason and justice preserve natural order in the universe.

The Rudraksha necklace illustrates that Shiva uses his cosmic laws firmly without any compromise in order to maintain law and order in the universe. 108 beads symbolize the elements used in the creation of the world.

The Varada Mudra indicates that he annihilates evil, grants boons, bestows grace, destroys ignorance, and awakens wisdom in his devotees. The Trisula represents three fundamental powers of will, action and knowledge.

The damaru produces Nada, the cosmic sound of “OM” which is the source of creation.

The Kamandalu made of a dry pumpkin contains nectar and represents breaking away from attachments of the physical world to clean inner self.

The bull symbolizes that Shiva removes ignorance and bestows power of wisdom on his devotees.

The tiger skin represents Shiva as the source of potential energy.

Shiva sitting on the cremation ground signifies that he is the controller of death in the physical world.

He is the ultimate controller of birth and death in this universe.


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