dakshinaa moorthy
Dakshinamurthy or Jnana Dakshinamurti (Tamil: தட்சிணாமூர்த்தி, Telugu: దక్షిణామూర్తి, Sanskrit: दक्षिणामूर्ति ((Dakṣiṇāmūrti))is an aspect of Shiva as a guru (teacher) of all types of knowledge and bestower of jnana. This aspect of Shiva is his personification as the supreme or the ultimate awareness, understanding and knowledge.This form represents Shiva in his aspect as a teacher of yoga, music, and wisdom, and giving exposition on the shastras. He is worshipped as the god of wisdom, complete and rewarding meditation

Dakshinamurti literally means 'one who is facing south (dakṣiṇa)' in Sanskrit. South is the direction of Death, hence change. In every Siva temple the stone image of Dakshinamurthy is installed, facing south, on the southern circumambulatory path around the sanctum sanctorum. Perhaps, of all Hindu Gods, he is the only one sitting facing south. The great seer Ramana Maharshi, has said in letter 89: one meaning of Dakshina is efficient; another meaning is ‘in the heart on the right side of the body’; Amurthy ’means Formlessness' . "Dakshinamurthy Stotra" in Sanskrit, means the "Shapelessness situated on the right side".

This iconographic form for depicting Shiva in Indian art is mostly south Indian in character.
Dakshinamurti, 16th century, Musée Guimet (museum), Paris.
 In his aspect as Jnana Dakshinamurti, Shiva is generally shown with four arms. He is depicted seated under a banyan tree, facing the south. Shiva is seated upon a deer-throne and surrounded by sages who are receiving his instruction. He is shown as seated with his right foot on mythical apasmara (a demon which, according to Hindu mythology, is the personification of ignorance) and his left foot lies folded on his lap. Sometimes even the wild animals, are depicted to surround Shiva. In his upper arms, he holds a snake or rosary or both in one hand and a flame in the other; while in his lower right hand is shown in vyakhyanamudra, his lower left hand holds a bundle of kusha grass or the scriptures. The index finger of His right hand is bent and touching the tip of his thumb. The other three fingers are stretched apart. This symbolic hand gesture or Mudra is the Gnana Mudra (or Jnana Mudra or Jana Mudra), a symbol of knowledge and wisdom. Sometimes, this hand is in the Abhaya Mudra, a posture of assurance and blessing. In Melakadambur the Dakshinamurthy looks seated on a bull under a banyan tree,a hole in this statue's ear that extends to the next ear was an wonderful sculpturing.

Dakshinamurthy is portrayed as being in the yogic state of abstract meditation - and as a powerful form brimming with ever flowing bliss and supreme joy. Variations of this iconic representation include Veenadhara Dakshinamurthy (holding a Veena), Rishabharooda Dakshinamurthy (mounted on a Rishabha - the bull) etc. Maharshi Kardamshankara Jnanadeva, a mystic seer says that Dakshinamurthy means the abstract or hidden power of the absolute which expressed in all enlightened masters.

Significance
Indian tradition accords a special reverence to the Guru or the teacher. Dakshinamurthy, in the Hindu system of beliefs is regarded as the ultimate Guru - the embodiment of knowledge and the destroyer of ignorance (as represented by the demon being crushed under the feet of the deity). The Jnana Mudra is interpreted in this way:- The thumb denotes the God and the index finger denotes the man. The other three fingers stand for the three congenital impurities of man viz. arrogance, illusion and bad deeds of the past births. When man detaches himself from these impurities, he reaches God. Another interpretation is that the other three fingers denote the three states of life: Jagruti (Fully awake through senses and mind), Swapna (Sleep state - When the mind is awake) and Sushukti (Tru-self - When the senses and mind go into soul - Atma). The Abhaya Mudra, a gesture with the hand lifted above thigh with palm facing out, fingers pointing, is interpreted as His grace upon His students. The rosary or the snake signifies Tantric knowledge. The fire represents illumination, removing the darkness of ignorance.

The fifth day of the week, Thursday is associated with the planet Jupiter and is referred to as Guru (Guruvar or Guruvaaram). Thursdays are considered auspicious to start any educational endeavours. It is on Thursdays that special worship services are offered to Dakshinamurthy in many Saivite temples. Some temple traditions hold full moon nights, particularly the night of the Guru Purnima as the appropriate time for worship services to Dakshinamurthy.

Temples of Lord Dakshinamurthy

Even though the idol of Dakshinamurthy is installed in every Shiva temple, there are only a few temples where Dakshinamurthy is the chief deity.
  • Only one of the twelve Jyotirlingas is Dakshinmurthy, the Mahakaleshwar in Ujjain. Being the only Dakshinmurthy Jyotirlinga, It holds special importance for Shaivites as a site of learning.
  • Ettumanoor Mahadevar Temple in Kerala, where the deity enshrined in the form of a Shivalingam is considered as Dakshinamurthy
  • Alangudi , Kumbakonam, Tamil Nadu
  • In the Sivanandeswarar temple in Thirupanthurai, Tanjore, Tamil Nadu, He is depicted in the Ardhanari form.
  • In Thirupulivanam, we can find Dakshinamurthy in the form of Ardhanariswara. This temple is on the Uthiramerur-Kanchipuram road, 5 km from Uthiramerur, near Chennai.
  • In March 2007, a big temple of Lord Dakshinamurty (the first in Maharashtra) was created in the Shrutisagar Ashram, about 30 km from Pune
  • Pragya Dakshinamoorthy at Chibavananda Ashram in Theni, western Tamil Nadu
  • Dakshinamurthy at Sukapuram, Edapal Taluk in Malappuram District , Kerala
  • In Suchindram Thanumalaya temple (5km from Nagercoil, Kanyakumari Dist.), contrary to tradition, Dakshinamurthy is worshipped instead of Ganesh/Vinayaka. Ganesha statue comes last in the worship line.
  • In Thiruvotriyur,Chennai a dedicated temple to Dhakshinamoorthy exists. It's unique as the Lord faces North and is aptly called VadaGurusthalam (the guru's place of north).
The oldest dakshinamurty temple is situated in 'poonthottam village' in Thiruvarur, Tamilnadu. It's estimated that this temple is nearly 1000 years old and the idol of the lord was fixed on the day of mahakumbamela that that took place 1000 years ago
  • Dakshinamurthy temple at Vellave near Talipramba (Kannur District, Kerala), This is a swayambhoo temple (self evolved ) of Dakshinamurthi. This temple is situated 4 Km away from the famous Rajarajeshwara Temple, Taliparamba
Worshipers at Dakshinamurthy temple at Brihadeeswarar temple
The oldest dakshinamurty temple is situated in 'poonthottam village' in Thiruvarur, Tamilnadu. It's estimated that this temple is nearly 1000 years old and the idol of the lord was fixed on the day of mahakumbamela that that took place 1000 years ago



Sri Dakshinamurthy Stotram

The Sri Dakshinamurthy stotram written by Sri Adi Shankaracharya praises the Lord thus;
Mouna Vyakhya prakatitha, para,
Brahma thathwam yuvanam,
Varshishtha anthevasad rishiganai,
Ravrutham brahma nishtai,
Acharyendram kara kalihtha chin,
Mudram ananda roopam,
Swathmaramam mudhitha vadanam,
Dakshinamurthim eede.

I praise and salute that Dakshinamrthy,
Who faces the south,
Who explains the true nature of the supreme Brahman,
Through his state of silence,
Who is young in looks,
Who is surrounded by disciples who are old Sages,
Whose minds are fixed on Brahman,
Who is the greatest of teachers,
Who shows the Chinmudhra by his hand,
Who is personification of happiness,
Who is in the state of extreme joy within himself,
And who has a smiling face.

Viswam darpana drusyamana nagari,
Thulyam nijantargatham,
Pasyannathmani mayaya bahirivoth,
Bhutham yatha nidraya,
Ya sakshath kuruthe prabodha samaye,
Swathmanameva dwayam,
Thasmai sri guru murthaye nama idham,
Sree Dakshinamurthaye., 2

Similar to the image of a town as seen in the mirror,
When one sees the image of the world within him,
The world appears as if it is outside.
It is similar to his seeing due to illusion,
During the state of sleep,
That the one real fact appears as many different truths,
And he realizes,when he wakes up and sees the reality,
That he is really the one and only one soul.
Salutation to the God facing the south,
Who is the greatest teacher.

Beejasyanthari vankuro jagadhidham,
Prang nirvikalpam puna,
Mayakalpitha desa kala kalanaa,
Vaichithrya chithrikrutham,
Mayaveeva vijrumbhayathyapi maha,
Yogeeva yah swechaya,
Thasmai sri guru murthaye nama idham,
Sree dakshinamurthaye., 3

Like the germ inside the seed is its part,
But becomes different after development
The many places and time which are before us,
Are drawn by illusion in the board of life in a peculiar manner,
By a great savant or an expert Siddha,
Who can create them as per their will,
Salutation to the God facing the south,
Who is the greatest teacher.

Yasyaiva sphuranam sadathmakamasath,
Kalparthagam bhasathe,
Sakshaath thathwamaseethi veda vachasa,
Yobodhyathyasrithhan,
Yath saksht karanath bhavenna punara,
Aavrithir bhavambhonidhow,
Thasmai sri guru murthaye nama idham,
Sree dakshinamurthaye., 4

He who exists as the real light of truth,
And shines in the false world of appearance,
And He who teaches disciples the great saying,
“Thou art that” after realizing its import,
Gets away from this cycle of life and death.
Salutation to the God facing the south,
Who is the greatest teacher.

Nanachidhra ghato dhara sthitha maha,
Deepa prabha bhaswaram,
Jnanam yasya thu chakshuradhi karana,
Dwara bahi spandathe,
Jaanameethi tham eva baandham anubathi,
Yethath samastham jagat,
Thasmai sri guru murthaye nama idham,
Sree dakshinamurthaye., 5

Like the light emanating from a lamp,
Kept in a pot with many holes,
Goes out in all directions,
In the person in whom the wisdom goes out
Through the openings of ear, eye , mouth and thought,
And when that person realizes that ‘I know myself”,
This whole universe shines after Him alone,
Who shines in the consciousness as the knower.
Salutation to the God facing the south,
Who is the greatest teacher.

Deham pranam api indryanyapi chalaam,
Budhim cha soonyam vidhu,
Stree balandha jadopamasthvaha mithi,
Brandha brusam vadhina,
Maya sakthi vilasa kalpitha maha,
Vyamoha samharine,
Thasmai sri guru murthaye nama idham,
Sree dakshinamurthaye., 6

Those great philosophers , who think that,
The body, the soul and the fickle intellect,
The concept of emptiness and all other nothingness,
Are nothing but themselves,
Are similar to the women children , blind and the ignorant.
It is only He who can destroy, this veil of ignorance,
And wake us up from this state of deceit.
Salutation to the God facing the south,
Who is the greatest teacher.

Rahu grastha divakarendu sadrusho,
Maya samachadanath,
Sanamthra karanopa samharanatho,
Yo abhoot sushuptha pumaan,
Pragaswapsaamithi prabodha samaye,
Yaa prathyabignayathe,
Thasmai sri guru murthaye nama idham,
Sree dakshinamurthaye., 7

Similar to the Sun when being masked by the serpent Rahu,
Knows that it was existing, once the eclipse is over
That man whose senses are suppressed
When he is asleep,
Because of the veil of illusion,
Realizes that he was in the state of sleep,
When he wakes up.
Salutation to the God facing the south,
Who is the greatest teacher.

Balyadishwapi jagaradhadishu thadha,
Sarva sva avasthasthaswapi,
Vyavrutha swanuvarthamanamaha,
Mithyanth sphurantham sada,
Svathmaanam pragatikarothi bajatham,
Yo mudraya bhadraya,
Thasmai sri guru murthaye nama idham,
Sree dakshinamurthaye., 8

Salutations to him who shines and exhibits,
Himself by the beatific Chinmudhra of the hand,
That he exists within the humans as self,
Forever and non changing,
Even during the changing states of childhood, youth and old age
And even during the states of sleep, dream and wakefulness.
Salutation to the God facing the south,
Who is the greatest teacher.
The truth as represented by the concept of Brahman, exists always.

Viswam pasyathi karya karana thaya,
Swa swami sambandatha,
Sishyacharya thaya thadaiva pithru,
Puthradhyathmana bedatha,
Swapne Jagrathi va ya esha purusho,
Maya Paribramitha,
Thasmai sri guru murthaye nama idham,
Sree dakshinamurthaye., 9

The world sees as cause and effect,
The differences between us and our lord,
The distinction between teacher and the taught,
The distinction between father and son,
And so the man is confused by illusion,
And believes in these differences,
During the times of dream and wakefulness.
Salutation to the God facing the south,
Who is the greatest teacher.
.

Bhoorambaamsya anilo ambhara,
Maharnadho himamasu puman,
Ithyabhathi characharathmakamidham,
Yasyaiva murthyashtakam,
Nanyath kinchana vidhyathe vimrusathaam,
Yasmath parasmath vibho,
Thasmai sri guru murthaye nama idham,
Sree dakshinamurthaye., 10

To the sake of which supreme Brahman,
The universe is shining as self,
Which is Movable and immovable, with its aspects?
Of water, fire, air, space,
The sun, moon and the individual soul,
And also to those who examine the truth behind,
The meaning of this universe and find,
That it Consists of nothing but,
The God who is every where.
Salutation to the God facing the south,
Who is the greatest teacher.

Sarvathmathvamithi sphutikruthamitham,
Yasmadamushamin sthave,
Thenasya sravanath thadartha mananath,
Dyanascha Sankeerthanath,
Sarvathmathva maha vibhuthi sahitham,
Syadheeswarasthvam svatha,
Siddhyeth thath punarashtadha parinatham,
Chaisvaryamvayhatham., 11

The concept of the Athma,
Which is explained in this poem of praise,
Hearing which, understanding which,
Meditating which and singing which,
One would attain the state of the godliness,
And the great state of self realization,
And also you would get the eight powers of occult,
Without any problems in between.

The following three stanzas as well as the first stanza are chanted after the main stotra:-

Chitram Vata tharor mole vruddha,
Sishya, Guror Yuva,
Gurostu mounam vykhyanam,
Sishyasthu china samsaya

It is strange to see,
The very old disciples,
And the very young teacher,
Who sit under a banyan tree,
With the teacher always observing silence,
And the students getting all the doubts cleared.

Om nama pranavarthaya,
Suddha jnanaika moorthaye nama,
Nirmalaya prasanthaya,
Sri Dakshinamurthaye nama.
Salutations to that Dakshinamurthy,
Who is the meaning of the pranava, “OM”,

Who is the personification of unalloyed wisdom,
Who is crystal clear in his thought,
And who is the epitome of peace.

Gurave sara lokaanam,
Bishaje bhava roginaam,
Nidhaye sarva vidhyanam,
Sri Dakshinamurthaye nama.

Salutations to that Dakshinamurthy,
Who is the teacher of the entire world,
Who is the doctor to those,
Afflicted by the disease of birth and death,
And who is the treasure hose of all knowledge.

WATCH VIDEO : LORD DAKSHINAMURTI STOTRAM



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