Forms of God Shiva - 2

(shankara nArAyaNar)

The right part of the body, white in color, moon decorated crown, decorated by ash and rudrAksham, the left, black in color, with jeweled crown, shining in yellow clothes, the right hands are holding axe and protection posture, and the left, conch and mace, partially showing eye in the forehead, in the combined form of harihara, always (I) salute that shambhu.

purANa of the deity shankaranarayana
sha.nkara nArAyaNar : the combined form of sha.nkara and nArAyaNa

vishNu is one of the shaktis (powers) of Lord Shiva. This mUrti indicates that concept. vishNu is in the left part of the Lord's body, which is the place of shakti. (1) (During the mOhini avatAr, mahAviShNu became the devi of Lord shiva.)



( Half Male & Half Female God )

In the form of male and female, matted hair with moon, axe, smeared in red (aruNa), wearing snakes and the skin of tiger, embracing the bull and with a bent leg, this the right half, and the left black in color, hand holding a (lily) flower close to the chest, with a silk like lotus foot, wearing gold ornaments, salutations to the Half female God.

purANa of the deity
ardha nAri Ishvarar : half female God (bhOga mUrti)
Sage bRingi is one of the ardent devotees of Lord shiva. He used to worship only Lord shiva and not shakti. Goddess shakti, being the power as the name indicate, pulled out the energy from bRingi mahaRishi's body. Now he was even unable to stand. He pleaded to God. God shiva provided him with a stick. On its support he stood and still worshipped Lord shiva alone. Goddess shakti wanted to become an inseparable part of Lord shiva's form. She oberved the kEdhAra mahA vrata (1) austerity, which is now known as deepAvaLi. Pleased with her austerity, Lord shiva granted her the boon of being part of His form. So the Lord now appeared male on the right side and female on the left side and hence became ardhanArIshvara.

Significance of this form
This is one of the very important form of God, Hindus worship. This is a much-hailed form in scriptures of various languages. Hindus do not say that the God is only male. God is male - female and neuter too ! Since God is conceptually beyond sex, though gets referred as He/She many times, it is more appropriate to refer as It, especially at Its intrinsic condition, as do many hindu scriptures.

Philosophically, this form is quite associated with the Grace of God. shiva and shakti are one and the same Supreme. The formless God is called parashiva. On Its own free-will for the benefit of pashus (souls), which are drowned in pAsha (bondage), It thinks to create the worlds. Its dynamism of creation thus springs out of It, which is called shakti. Now shiva and Its power shakti create everything. This is the form of their togetherness that springs out of Lord shiva. Because of this the form is associated with the grace of God. shiva and shakti though the same may also act independently. They are associated like the person and the action of the person. They are one and the same like the ice and the water - one becomes the other. For this reason scriptures describe that shakti to shiva is a wife (they are together), mother (shakti becomes shiva - so shiva comes out of shakti) and daughter (shiva become shakti). Poet kAlidAsa hails them as inseparable like the word and its meaning, the letter and pronunciation !!

kirAtar ( Lord Shiva As a Hunter )

Body black in color, two shoulders holding bows and arrows, hair falling on the forehead, posing comfortably, with two piercing eyes, blossomed nice face, with feathers and fragrant flowers in his head, wearing the skin of tiger, Terrific, I meditate that Hunter (kirAta), the thief (hara).

purANa of the deity
kirAtar : the hunter
This is the only form of Lord Shiva in which He appeared black in color. arjuna wanted to get the peerless weapon pAsupatAstram from Lord Shiva for the battle of mahAbharata. He left the other four pANdavAs, went to the forest and did austere tapas for getting the boon of Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva was satisfied with his prayer, wanted to give the pAsupatAstram to him, but wanted to play a bit too. He took the form of a Hunter with Shakthi as Huntress. That time a demon by name mUkAsura, who was in the form of wild pig came to kill arjuna. To kill the wild pig arjuna fired an arrow from the front, at the same time the Hunter, Who is none other than God Himself, attacked it from the back and killed the pig.

kiradhanarjuna mocked at the Hunter for firing the arrow from the back. Having great pride of his valor, he was als angry at the Hunter because He aimed at his prey. The Hunter responded that attacking an animal from the back is not against rules of hunting. An argument broke out. They decided to fight deciding who was more valorous between them. The Hunter cut the string in arjuna's bow with His arrow in the fight! Angered and excited, arjuna started wrestling. He couldn't match the Lord, and the Lord enjoyed his fighting. At one point of time in wrestling arjuna held the foot of the Hunter. As the Lord is pleased when somebody catches His holy feet, He stopped wrestling appeared with pArvati revealing Who He is. Shocked arjuna pleaded for forgiveness, as he was trying to fight with the Supreme out of his ignorance. However the God, Who is pleased by devotion, blessed him and gave him the invincible pAsupatAstra. (In some books it is told that arjuna couldn't fight with the Hunter, he started worshipping the Shiva Lingam. To his astonishment he found the flowers he offered to the Lingam on the head of the Hunter. Then he prostrated before the Hunter and the Lord revealed Himself). This can be found in detail in kirAtArjuniyam of bhAravi and mahA bhArata.

ka.nkALar ( God with Skull and Bone ornaments )

Smeared in red (raktApam), blossomed face, crowned with moon, carrying the staff with a collection of bones to the left, Three eyed, lotus hands like vEdAs (four), having skeletons, vINA, striking with right hand the Damarukam (drum) in the left hand, holding axe and deer, to that ka.nkALa dEva salutations.

purANa of the deity :
ka.nkALar : God with skeleton
Lord shiva is said to be associated with destruction, dancing in cemeteries, wearing the skulls and bones etc. Why ? While everybody irrespective of human, animal, plant, devas, asuras and all creatures at the time of praLaya get reduced (die) to be created again in the next prapanchOtpatti, God is the only one, Who is ever present. Indicating this Eternal being of God is the skulls, skeleton ornaments and the concept that It dances in the cemeteries.

ka.nkALar is the mUrti after the reducing all the creations into Him. He will be having a staff with bones collected in it, which is an indication of destruction. He alone will exist and will be enjoying the Self.

Chandesha Anugrahar

The terrific Lord, yellow in color, with hands like yugAs (four), in the right hand holding axe, deer, with a hand in boon giving posture, pArvati to the left, blessing chaNdEshvara by keeping His hand on his body, to the right, Three eyed, with all decoration, wearing crescent, with ga.nga, to Him salutations.

Purana of the deity :
chaNdEsha anugrahar : One blessing chaNdEshar (bhOga mUrti)
chaNdEshvarar is one of the 63 saints - nAyanmAr. He is one of the heads of Shiva gaNas, who owns whatever is used for Lord Shiva after His acceptance. He sits to the left of Lord Shiva and the final offerings are done to him in any pUja in the temples.

Chandeesha anugrahar
chaNdEshvarar (his original name is vichAra charmar) was born to echcha dattan. The man in the village, who used to take the cows for grazing, used to beat them and torture them. chaNdEshvarar being an ardent devotee and full with love, took over that job. He used to leave the cows in the morning in the grounds and sit in meditation. By the fall of the evening he brings them back to their houses. Under his supervision cows started giving plenty of milk. When chaNdEshvarar sits in worship of the Almighty they used to come near and start giving the milk on their own. He used that milk for anointing the LiN^gam he makes out of the sand and worships it. One day some ignorant, who was passing by mistook him and thought chaNdEshvarar milked the cows to pour it into the sand. He reported this to chaNdEshvarar's father. The next day his father followed chaNdEshvarar without his knowledge and hid behind a shrub. As usual the cows gave the milk and chaNdEshvarar started performing anointing to the LiN^gam with the heart flowing with bhakti. echcha dattan without realizing his bhakti hit him with a staff. But he continued his worship without any effect. He was fully involved in the offerings. Irked echcha dattan kicked away the pots having milk disturbing the worship. chaNdEshvarar got angry at the disturbance to shiva pUja, took a staff lying nearby and threw it and didn't bother that the irked echcha dattan was his father. That staff became axe and cut off the legs of irked echcha dattan. In the complete neutrality he was not partial to look into whether the person disturbed the worship was his father or anybody else. The Lord pleased with his devotion, appeared before him, wound the garland of konRai that he was wearing to his head, made him sit next to Him in the left, and owner for all shiva prasAdam.

chakrapradar (Giver of Chakra)

How did Vishnu get chakra?

Dhyana shlokam of chakra prada murthi :
In one side vishNu, standing with folded hands, offering at the Feet of the Divine one of his eyes to complete (the shortfall) a thousand lotuses, from Which Lord got the disc weapon(chakra) and the blessing order to be renowned as lotus-eyed, that Lord of Creatures (pashupati) with axe, deer, boon giving posture, to that giver of disc, salutations.

purANa of the chakra dhAna Murthi:
chakra pradar : The giver of disc (bhOga mUrti)
For the protection of the world mahA vishNu wanted to have a weapon that is very powerful. He wanted to worship Lord Shiva with thousand flowers to get the the sudarshana disc, which was created by Lord shiva for jala.ndhara samhAra. mahA viShNu collected the required flowers and started the worship. But during the worship, mahA vishNu found that he fell short of one flower to thousand. He did not want to stop at any cost the worship of Lord shiva. Immediately he plucked out and offered one of the eyes as the thousandth flower. Delighted by that devotion, Lord Shiva gave the disc to viShNu. Also mahA vishNu got the name "lotus eyed" (padmAksha) due to the devotion in offering the eye to make up for a lotus.

chakradhanar - Shiva giving Vishnu chakra
However the chakra was too powerful for viShNu to hold. So God made it into three parts, one given to viShNu, one to shakti and one kept with Himself. With that chakra the reverend Lord viShNu is protecting all the worlds. The form of Lord shiva blessing viShNu with the disc is the chakra prada mUrthi.

saha umA skandar

Like the rising sun (bright), with four hands, necklace and bracelet, in sacred robes, hair wound as crown, with three shining eyes, pArvati to the left, Fragrant, with kumAra in the middle, to that great sOmaskanda, with deer, protection, boon giving postures and axe, salutations.

purANa of the deity :
saha umA skandar : with umA and skandar (bhOga mUrti)
mahA viShNu wanted to have a son who would be an example of charm. For that he worshipped the God. Delighted with the worship of the great viShNu, Lord shiva appeared to provide the boon he looked for. At that time mahAviShNu showed no respect to goddess shakti. Irked by that shakti cursed that the charming son viShNu would get would be burnt away by the Lord. (1) viShNu was shocked to hear this. Now he worshipped again the Lord along with goddess shakti as well as their child Lord skandha. Pleased by the worship shakti blessed that the son of viShNu who would get burnt away by the God, would again be brought back to lify by the Grace of God. By this boon mahAviShNu got the charming lord of lust - manmata . The form worshipped by mahAviShNu is the saha umA skandha mUrthi or sOmAskandha murti.

mahA vishNu worshipped this mUrti for long time having at his heart. Later brahmA requested mahAviShNu for this mUrti and got the same. He worshipped the mUrti and then indra got the same as boon. The chOza king muchukunda obtained it from indra, installed in the seven vidaN^ga(2) places.


Meditate the form which is (shining) like crores (millions) of suns (kOTiravipram), Three eyed, wearing the cool gangA, in the hand with axe, deer, protection posture, the Great with only one leg, to the right and left shoulders of Lord shambhu brahmA, and vishNu present with their ideal arms surrounding Him, to Him, salutations with folded hands.

purANa of the deity :
Eka pAdar : one legged 
This is the mUrti that shows that brahmA and vishNu appear from the Lord and finally merge in the Lord and oneness of God.


With axe, and deer in hands, the Pure one, with hanging down right leg, to the left with folded leg, Three eyed, decorated with matted hair, blessing the king of obstacles who is to the left by placing the hand on his head with love, smearing (the ash as)three stripes, to that vighna prasAda, salutations.

purANa of the deity :
vighnEsha anugrahar : Blessing the god of obstacles (bhOga mUrti)
vighnEsha is the form of knowledge of the Lord. His majestic elephant form shows the greatness of the knowledge. For doing the shiva pUja or any austerities, knowledge is required. So first vighnEsha is prayed to remove our ignorance and any other disturbances, and give us the knowledge for praying the Lord. Lord Shiva gave vighnEsha when the gods and devotees prayed Him for the removal of any hurdles, that occur when they worship.(There are many other purANAs about vignEsha's appearance). Praying the vighnEshAnugrahar will remove the hurdles.


Dakshinamurthy Dhyaana Slokam
The leg pressing over a demon, on the top of which the Embodiment of merits is sitting with one leg folded, the one who teaches difficult words (vedas) with ease, the sages enjoying (the teachings, sitting) on ground, with the (hand) posture of explaining, a fire pot, book and akshamAla in the four hands, Who trembles away my ignorance, to That dakshiNAmUrti (salutations).

Purana of the Dakshinamurthy
dakshiNA mUrti: south faced Lord (yOga mUrti) dakshinamoorthy
The four sons, of brahmA, sanaka, sanandana, sanAtana, sanat kumAra did austere tapas and analysis, but they were unclear of the Supreme Truth. They finally decided to come to Lord Shiva to get the knowledge of the Truth. The Lord sat under the banyan tree, and the four sages also sat down around Him. Lord stayed in the yOga posture without saying a single word. The four sages got all their doubts cleared just by that posture. The form in which God appeared as a Supreme Guide is the form of wisdom dakshiNAmUrti.

This explains that the Truth cannot be explained in words and must be experienced. Including the great chinmudra posture, the posture of shrI dhakshiNA mUrti, who is the teacher of all the teachers, indicates a lot of information that needs days to explain. As thirumUlar says, the posture of the guru is a thing to be thought about always. That is the clarity ! (theLivu guruvuru chin^dhiththal thAnE)

Lord nIlakaNTha (shrIkaNTha)

With protection and boon giving posture of hands, with axe and deer, wearing moon, snakes, yellow robe, Three eyed, Auspicious, Dark-blue throated, that Divine riding the bull, Remover of the poison, Colorful (peacock) feather like formed (I salute).

purANa of the deity
nIla kaNThar: black (blue) throated Lord
Demons and gods wanted to have the amR^ita the nectar that would make one live long avoiding death. The amR^ita was in the milky ocean and required churning the huge ocean to get out the nectar. They came together to collectively churn the big ocean. They churned the milk ocean with ma.ndhAra mountain as the stem and serpent vAsuki as the rope. In the process, due to the pain serpent vAsuki emitted the poison hAla (meaning destructive). At the same time one more poison came from the ocean hAla. Both put together became an disastrous poison that threatened the very existence of all including the divines, deamons and the other lives. mahA vishNu tried to stop that. His body turned blue, but he couldn't stop it. Terrified by the destroying power of the poison, all of them surrendered to Lord Shiva, the Giver of Refuge. (So far they had never thought of Lord shiva to offer first the amR^ita, but only when it came to disaster they remembered God !)

The Graceful God took the hAlAhalam as if it is a fruit in the hand. Asked all of them, what He should do with that. They pleaded that the poison would annihilate them all if He left it off. Lord smilingly put it into His mouth ! But isn't all the worlds very much inside the God ? Though it will not affect the Lord, but the worlds would be again affected by the poison, Goddess Shakthi, the mother of all creatures, stopped the poison in His throat by putting her hand in His throat. The poison stayed there as a small black (blue) stain. Hence the Lord is called nIlakaNThar .

Now with the blessings of God, the divines continued to churn the ocean and got the amR^ita. God gave the amR^ita to the divines, but had only the poison. For the Lord, Who remains Eternal even after the divines who ate the amR^ita die, what is the need for amR^ita ? He is the greatest amR^ita one can seek!


Divine, Out of the symbol (li~Ngam) that arose out of the quarrel of prime-ness (between braHma and viShNu), Matted hair crested, Keeping the hand on the hip, with the other hands holding deer and protection sign, in the right holding axe, having the braHma and viShnu (who sought) the Transcending feet and crown, as the swan above and boar below, that li~Ngodbhava I meditate.

purANa of the deity
li~Ngodbhavar: The Lord appearing from the symbol. (The principle behind linga worship) 
Once before the creation started, a quarrel broke between braHma and viShNu as to who is great. braHma claimed he is as he is the creator of the whole world. viShNu rejected the claim saying the creation would not be useful without his sustenance of the world. The war of words between these two great divines worsened. At that point of time to make them realize the truth there appeared a pillar of fire. It was huge that both of them were astonished to see that. Now as a solution to their debate they wanted to decide who is the greatest by reaching the tip of that pillar. braHma took the form of a haMsa (swan) and went up to reach the top of that pillar, viShNu took the form of a wild pig and went down to reach the bottom of that pillar and it was agreed that whoever sees the either tip would be the greatest.

That pillar was not any ordinary column of fire, it was the Supreme Itself, the One that is beyond form, color and qualities ! Who knows the start and end of that Supreme !! The two who set out on their strength to explore the endings of It went on and on only to become more and more tired and it was hopeless to find the end of It. viShNu returned realizing that it should be the parashiva which is beyond the limits that can be measured by knowledge, Which has come out of Its Grace to bless them and make them realize the Truth easily. He accepted his failure. braHmA on the other hand, though realizing it is impossible to see the top of the fire column, returned lying that he saw the tip. The lie stood exposed and hence he is not worshipped. Now both of them realizing the greatness of the Supreme worshipped the Lord shiva, the Gracious one, with lots of devotion and sincerity. The Lord out of the grace to bless all the pashus (souls) with a way they could easily understand and worship the Supreme, Which is unexplainable, unexplorable, appeared as a li~Ngam which is a vertical pillar resembling the flame. As it resembles the flame, It is neither a form nor a formless, but is just a symbol of the Supreme jyoti. The Lord later appeared in a form and blessed viShNu and braHma. This Lord is called li~Ngodbhavar.

This form which came out of the formless Supreme out of Its grace to bless the sincere worship of braHma and viShNu and which is a from but represents the formlessness of the Supreme is considered very holy by the shaivites. The shiva li~Nga (meaning symbol of shiva) is the foremost of all the shaivite worships. As the ash would be closely associated with the fire, Holy Ash is associated with this Fire pillar Lord and sacred for the shaivites.


Peaceful, White, Three eyed, with delicacies like (six) shoulders, ears shining with ring, adorned with stick, bell, deer, axe, snakes, protection posture on the right and left, with folded horizontally kept left leg, the other leg hanging down over a bhUta, accompanied by gauri to the left, with the crown adorned with moon, to That sukhAsana salutations.

purANa of the deity:
sukhAsanar : Sitting in the comfortable posture(bhOga mUrti)
This form describes the Lord's posture in the abode of mount kailash, where the Lord is seated along with the great goddess umA blessing the devotees running the whole universe with the powerful devas saluting and looking for the Lords indication to serve. The Lord sitting in the posture of ease, is in the Bliss and grants the same for His true devotees.


#buttons=(Accept !) #days=(1)

Our website uses cookies Learn..
Accept !