Sage Mrukandu prayed Lord Shiva for a son. Lord Shiva asked him whether he wanted an intelligent son who will live only for 16 years or foolish son, who will live for one hundred years. The sage chose the former. A son was born to him and was named as Markandeya. This boy became a very great devotee of Lord Shiva. On his sixteenth birthday, he entered the sanctum sanctorum of the lord and embraced him. Yama, the lord of death came to take away his soul. Lord Shiva killed Yama. Then the boy Markandeya sang the following stotra. This prayer is supposed to ward of all evils, remove fear of death and realize all wishes.
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Atha dhyanam (Now the prayer)

Chandrarkagni vilochanam, smitha mukam,
Padmadwayantha sthitham,
Mudra pasa mrugakshasuthra vilasath paanim
Himaam suprabham,
Kotindu prakalathsudhaplutha thanum haaraathi,
Bhooshojwalam,
Kantham viswa vimohanam, pasupathim,
Mruthyunjayam bhavayeth.

I meditate on that victor over death,
Who has moon, sun and fire as eyes,
Who has a smiling face,
Who sits on two lotus flowers,
Whose hands shine with the sign the rope, 
The deer and the garland of rudraksha,
Who has the pleasant shine of the ice,
Who has a body drenched by nectar,
From billions of moons,
Who ornaments himself with several garlands,
Who is very handsome,
Who can attract the entire world,
And who is the lord of all beings.
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Jape Viniyoga (Now the chant is being started)

Rudram, pasupathim, sthanum, neelakandam, umapathim,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 1

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god,
Who is the angry one,
Who is the lord of all beings,
Who is stable,
Who has a blue neck,
And who is the consort of Uma.
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Neelakandam, kalamoorthim kalagnamr kalanasanam,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 2

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god,
Who is having a blue neck,
Who is the form of death,
Who knows paste, present and future,
And who destroyed the god of death.
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Neelakandam, viroopaksham nirmalam vimalapradham,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 3

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god,
Who has a blue neck,
Who has a different eye,
Who is clean,
And who is dazzlingly bright.
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Vamadevam mahadevam lokanadham jagatgurum,
Namami sirasa devam , kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 4

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god,
Who judges according to merit,
Who is the greatest god,
Who is the lord of the universe,
And who is the teacher of the world.
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Devadevam jagannatham devesam vrushabhadwajam,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 5

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god,
Who is the God of gods,
Who is the lord of the earth,
Who is the god of devas,
And who has a bull flag.
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Traiksham chathurbhujam santham jata makuta dharanam,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 6

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god,
Who has three eyes,
Who has four hands,
Who is peaceful,
And who wears matted hair and a crown.
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Bhasmoddulitha sarvangam nagabharana bhooshitham,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 7

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god
Who is covered with ash,
All over his body,
And who wears the serpent,
As an ornament.
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Anatham avyayam santham akshamala dharam haram,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 8

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god,
Who is limitless,
Who cannot be explained,
Who is peaceful,
Who is the killer,
And who wears the garland of eyes.
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Aaandham paramam nithyam kaivalya pada dhayinam,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 9

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god
Who is happiness,
Who is beyond thought,
Who is stable,
And who grants salvation.
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Ardhanaareeswaram devam parvathy prana nayakam,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 10

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god
Who is the god half male half female,
And who is the darling of Parvathy.
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Pralaya sthithi karthaaram adhi kartharameeswaram,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 11

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god
Who creates the state of deluge,
And who is the god who made the beginning.
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Vyomakesam viroopaksham chandrardha krutha shekaram,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 12

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god
Whose hair is the sky,
Who has a different eye,
And who has collected half of the moon.
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Gangadharam sasidharam sankaram shoolapaninam,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 13

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god
Who carries the river ganga,
Who keep moon as an ornament,
Who is Lord Shankara,
And who carries a trident.
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Swargapavarga datharam srushti sthithyanthakarinam,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 14

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that God,
Who grant heaven and salvation,
Who looks after creation, upkeep and destruction.
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Kalpa ayur dehi mey punyam yavad ayur arogatham,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 15

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god,
Who can grant a life of an eon,
Who can bless you with a long life,
Bereft of any sickness.
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Shivesanam mahadevam vamadevam sadashivam,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 16

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god,
Who is Shiva as well as Easwara,
Who is the great god,
Who gives correct judgments,
And who is always peaceful.
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Uthpathi sthithi samhara karthara meeswaram gurum,
Namami sirasa devam, kim no mrutyu karishyathi. 17

What can death do to the one,
Who salutes with his head that god,
Who takes responsibility,
Of creation, upkeep and destruction, 
And who is a great teacher.
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Markandeya krutham stotram ya padeth shiva sannidhou,
Thasya mruthyu bhayam nasthi na agni chora bhayaam kwachith. 18

Any one reading this prayer,
Written by Markandeya,
In front of Lord Shiva,
Would not have,
Fear of death,
Nr fear of fire and thieves.
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Shathavrutham prakarthavyam sankate kashta nasanam,
Suchir bhoothwa padeth stotram sarva sidhi pradhayakam 19

Reading it one hundred times,
In times of misery,
Will get rid of it,
And reading it with a clean mind,
Would make one get all his wants.
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Mruthyunjaya mahadeva thrahi maam saranagatham,
Janma mrutyu jara rogai, peeditham karma bandhanai. 20

Oh great god, Who has won over god of death,
Please save me as I am submitting to you,
From births, deaths, old age and disease,
And also the ties of Karma which affect me.
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Thaavaka stvad gatha prana thawa chithoham sada mruda,
Ithi vignapya devesam thryambakakhyam japeth,
Nama sivaya Sambaya haraye paramathmane,
Pranatha klesa naasaya yoginaam pathaye nama. 21-22

I appeal to the God that,
“My soul goes towards you,
And my mind always meditates on you,”
And then chant of Trayambaka Mantra*,
And salute that Samba,
Who is the inner soul of the destroyer,
And pray, ”destroy all life’s problems,
Oh Lord of Yoga, I salute you.”

* Trayambaka Mantra is given in the translation of Chamakam.

By Sage Markandeya
Translated by P. R. Ramachander






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