Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Whore

The Whore, originally uploaded by firoze shakir photographerno1.

her meter was running
she was hot and excited
we were exploring
new vistas on
the creaky bed
my luck
running out
i tried to push
my way ahead
she looked
deep into
the soul
of my desire
burning red
dont touch me
you havent
paid me she said
i dont mix business
with poetry
pulling up her
from my dreams
she fled

A Lover Going Home For Final Rest

Is Life Worth Living

oh death where is thy sting
take me home on your wings
life on the road she sings
hoping an end to her innings
thrown out of doors
by her once loved siblings
all around her the sound
of bombings man
killing man is
very common thing
bombed hopes
bombed buildings
silent scriptures
a forgotten message
the core of his teachings
yes she is muslim
a human casting
going round and round
like a buffer in a circle
within a ring a broken
down spring on a road

is life worth living

A Father's Grief

the tree of life
the death
of a daughter
a fathers grief
the cruel
of fate
blew away
a favorite leaf
21 years
of doting love
cut down
short and brief
the flesh
was willing
the restless soul
gives no relief
a blindfolded
a wet moist

Reading The Story of Life

the light from
his eyes is going
going gone
the story life
a sunset searching
for a new dawn
in the beginning was
the word the
mind mourns
the soul isolated

Outside The Mosque They Wait

cursing their accursed fate
god is helpless insensate
wondering if this is humanity
what did he really create
man renegade
destroyed all the
pillars of mankind
up everything
god forbade
a pledge gone awry
a pledge dead weight
man rises
to be born again
whether you
bury or cremate
man the illegitimate
of love and hate

Jesus Wants To Hold Her In His Hands

he is helpless
gagged and bound
you can guess
against the wall
he watches with
spiritual pain
holistic life
in a mess
those he ordained
in virginal white dress
victims of passion
guilty of
as they
as they
the church
turns the
other way
even when
they confess
a crime
they cant
even under
the rock
on which
he built hope
silent spectator
to excess
no more no less
jesus wants
to hold her
in his hands
freshly bleeding
her head
he cant
the roads
of remorse
a little princess
a changing
in the name
of success

Wherefore Art Thou

" if we hadn't met, then everything will have to change"

how did i meet you
does not matter now
water flowing under
the bridge touched
me somehow
on the threshold
of your world
an Alexandrian cat
let out a meow
the filters
of your mind
a cosmic ray
you allowed
being lonely
is a metaphor
for living
in a crowd
it is humility
that kisses
the lords brow
what you are
what you are not
a life giving force
a laden bough
wherefore art thou

Lord Shiva

Lord Shiva, originally uploaded by firoze shakir photographerno1.

123,968 items / 866,300 views


Five is a sacred number for Shiva.[161] One of his most important mantras has five syllables (namaḥ śivāya).[162]

Shiva's body is said to consist of five mantras, called the pañcabrahmans.[163] As forms of God, each of these have their own names and distinct iconography:[164]

* Sadyojāta
* Vāmadeva
* Aghora
* Tatpuruṣa
* Īsāna

These are represented as the five faces of Shiva and are associated in various texts with the five elements, the five senses, the five organs of perception, and the five organs of action.[165][166] Doctrinal differences and, possibly, errors in transmission, have resulted in some differences between texts in details of how these five forms are linked with various attributes.[167] The overall meaning of these associations is summarized by Stella Kramrisch:

Through these transcendent categories, Śiva, the ultimate reality, becomes the efficient and material cause of all that exists.[168]

According to the Pañcabrahma Upanishad:

One should know all things of the phenomenal world as of a fivefold character, for the reason that the eternal verity of Śiva is of the character of the fivefold Brahman. (Pañcabrahma Upanishad 31)[169]

[edit] Relationship to Vishnu
Vishnu (left half—blue) and Shiva (right half—white)

During the Vedic period, both Vishnu and Shiva (as identified with Rudra) played relatively minor roles, but by the time of the Brahmanas (c. 1000-700 BCE), both were gaining ascendance.[170] By the Puranic period, both deities had major sects that competed with one another for devotees.[171] Many stories developed showing different types of relationships between these two important deities.

Sectarian groups each presented their own preferred deity as supreme. Vishnu in his myths "becomes" Shiva.[172] The Vishnu Purana (4th c. CE) shows Vishnu awakening and becoming both Brahmā to create the world and Shiva to destroy it.[173] Shiva also is viewed as a manifestation of Vishnu in the Bhagavata Purana.[174] In Shaivite myths, on the other hand, Shiva comes to the fore and acts independently and alone to create, preserve, and destroy the world.[175] In one Shaivite myth of the origin of the lingam, both Vishnu and Brahmā are revealed as emanations from Shiva's manifestation as a towering pillar of flame.[176] The Śatarudrīya, a Shaivite hymn, says that Shiva is "of the form of Vishnu".[177] Differences in viewpoints between the two sects are apparent in the story of Śarabha (also spelled "Sharabha"), the name of Shiva's incarnation in the composite form of man, bird, and beast. Shiva assumed that unusual form to chastise Vishnu in his hybrid form as Narasimha, the man-lion, who killed Hiranyakashipu.[178][179] However, Vaishnava followers including Dvaita scholars, such as Vijayindra Tirtha (1539-95) dispute this view of Narasimha based on their reading of Sattvika Puranas and Śruti texts.[180]

Syncretic forces produced stories in which the two deities were shown in cooperative relationships and combined forms. Harihara is the name of a combined deity form of both Vishnu (Hari) and Shiva (Hara).[181] This dual form, which is also called Harirudra, is mentioned in the Mahabharata.[182] An example of a collaboration story is one given to explain Shiva's epithet Mahābaleśvara, "lord of great strength" (Maha = "great", Bala = "strength", Īśvara = "lord"). This name refers to a story in which Rāvaṇa was given a linga as a boon by Shiva on the condition that he carry it always. During his travels, he stopped near the present Deoghar in Jharkhand to purify himself and asked Narada, a devotee of Vishnu in the guise of a Brahmin, to hold the linga for him, but after some time, Narada put it down on the ground and vanished. When Ravana returned, he could not move the linga, and it is said to remain there ever since.[183] The story of Gokarna in Karnataka is also similar in that Ravana, on the way to Lanka from Kailasa, gave the lingam to Ganesha to keep until he bathes, but Ganesha fits it in the earth, so the lingam is called Mahabaleshwara.

As one story goes, Shiva is enticed by the beauty and charm of Mohini, Vishnu's female avatar, and procreates with her. As a result of this union, Ayyappa or Shasta identified with Ayyanar is born. Shiva is also served by Mohini when a bunch of haughty sages were taught a lesson by Shiva.
[edit] Avatars

Shiva, like some other Hindu deities, is said to have several incarnations, known as avatars. Although Puranic scriptures contain occasional references to avatars of Shiva, the idea is not universally accepted in Saivism. [184]

* Adi Shankara, the 8th-century philosopher of non-dualist Vedanta"Advaita Vedanta", was named "Shankara" after Lord Shiva and is considered by some to have been an incarnation of Shiva.[185]
* In the Hanuman Chalisa, Hanuman is identified as the eleventh avatar of Shiva, but this belief is not universal.[186]
* Sage Durvasa is also incarnation of Lord Shiva[citation needed].
* Virabhadra who was born when Shiva grabbed a lock of his matted hair and dashed it to the ground[citation needed]. And it was Virabhadra(Veerabathra) who severed Daksha's head as per Shiva's instructions[citation needed].

[edit] Maha Shivaratri
Main article: Maha Shivaratri
See also: List of Hindu festivals

Maha Shivratri is a festival celebrated every year on the 13th night or the 14th day of the new moon in the Krishna Paksha of the month of Maagha or Phalguna in the Hindu calendar. This festival is of utmost importance to the devotees of Lord Shiva. Mahashivaratri marks the night when Lord Shiva performed the 'Tandava' and it is also believed that Lord Shiva was married to Parvati. On this day the devotees observe fast and offer fruits, flowers and Bael leaves to Shiva Linga.

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[edit] Temples
Main page: Shiva temples
One hundred and eight Shiva lingas carved on the rock at the banks of River Tungabhadra, Hampi
Pashupatinath Temple in Kathmandu, Nepal.

In Shaivism, Shiva is the God of all and is described as worshipped by all, including Devas (gods) like Brahma and Indra, Asuras (demons) like Banasura and Ravana, humans like Adi Shankara and Nayanars, and creatures as diverse as Jatayu, an eagle, and Vali, an ape. Deities, rishis (sages), and grahas (planets) worshipped Shiva and established Shivalingas in various places.
[edit] Jyotirlinga temples
Main article: Jyotirlinga temples

The holiest Shiva temples are the 12 Jyotirlinga temples. They are,
Jyotirlinga Location State
Somnath Prabhas Patan,
near Veraval Gujarat
Nageshwar Dwarka Gujarat
Mahakaleshwar Ujjain Madhya Pradesh
Mallikārjuna Srisailam Andhra Pradesh
Bhimashankar near Pune Maharashtra
Omkareshwar near Indore Madhya Pradesh
Kedarnath Kedarnath Uttarakhand
Kashi Vishwanath Varanasi Uttar Pradesh
Trimbakeshwar Trimbak,
near Nasik Maharashtra
Ramanathaswamy Rameswaram Tamil Nadu
Grishneshwar near Ellora Maharashtra
Vaidyanath Deoghar Jharkhand
[edit] Manifestations

In South India, five temples of Shiva are held to be particularly important, as being manifestations of him in the five elemental substances:
Deity Manifestation Temple Location State
Sri Jambhukeswar Water Jambukeshwarar Temple Thiruvanaikaval Tamil Nadu
Sri Arunachaleswar Fire Annamalaiyar Temple Thiruvannamalai Tamil Nadu
Sri Kalahastheeswara Air Srikalahasti temple Srikalahasti Andhra Pradesh
Sri Ekambareswar Earth Ekambareswarar Temple Kanchipuram Tamil Nadu
Sri Nataraja Ether Natarajar Temple Chidambaram Tamil Nadu
[edit] Sabha temples

The five sabha temples where Shiva is believed to perform five different style of dances are:
Sabha Temple Location State
Pon (Gold) Sabha Natarajar Temple Chidambaram Tamil Nadu
Velli (Silver) Sabha Meenakshi
Sundareswarar Temple Madurai Tamil Nadu
Tamira (Copper) Sabha Nellaiappar Temple Tirunelveli Tamil Nadu
Rathna (Gem) Sabha Thiruvalankadu
Vadaaranyeswarar Temple Thiruvalangadu
near Arakkonam Tamil Nadu
Chitira (Picture) Sabha Kutraleeswar Temple Coutrallam Tamil Nadu
[edit] Other famous temples in India

Tamil Nadu

Main article: Shiva Temples of Tamilnadu

* Airavatesvara Temple, Darasuram, Thanjavur district
* Gangaikonda Cholapuram
* Rockfort Ucchi Pillayar Temple, Tiruchirappalli
* Brihadeeswarar, Thanjavur—2nd Largest Temple in the world, after Angkor Wat in Cambodia; it also has one of the largest Shivalingams and the largest Nandi in the world
* Patteeswaram in Perur, Coimbatore District


* Rajarajeshwara Temple, Taliparamba
* Vadakkunnathan Temple, Thrissur
* Poonkunnam Siva Temple, Poonkunnam, Thrissur district


* Murudeshwara, Bhatkal Taluk of Uttara Kannada (Tulunadu)—World's Tallest Shiva statue[187][188]
* Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara temple in Belthangadi taluk in Dakshina Kannada district

Andhra Pradesh

* Vemulawada, Karimnagar district


* Kailash Temple, Ellora


* Sukreswar Temple, Guwahati


* Lingaraj Temple, Bhubaneswar
* Kapilash Temple, Dhenkanal District
* Mukteswar Temple, Bhubaneswar
* Parsurameswar Temple, Bhubaneswar
* Gupteswar Cave temple, near Jeypore


* Daksheswara Mahadev Temple at Kankhal in Haridwar district
* Guptakashi
* Jageshwar
* Rudreshwar Mahadev Temple
* Baleshwar Temple, Champawat
* Gopinath Mandir, Chamoli Gopeshwar
* Panch Kedar
o Kedarnath Temple, Kedarnath, Rudraprayag district – one of the most revered shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva
o Tungnath, Chamoli district
o Rudranath
o Madhyamaheshwar
o Kalpeshwar

Jammu and Kashmir

* Amarnath Yatra to the Amarnathji cave in Jammu and Kashmir is of huge significance.[189]


* Nili Chhatri temple, New Delhi

[edit] Famous temples in other countries

* Pashupatinath Temple located on the banks of Bagmati River in the eastern part of Kathmandu, Nepal
* Lake Mansarovar and Mount Kailash in Tibet, a pilgrimage site believed to be the abode of Lord Shiva
* Gosaikunda Lake located in Rasuwa District, Nepal

Lord Shiva

Lord Shiva, originally uploaded by firoze shakir photographerno1.


Shiva (also Siva) (pronounced /ˈʃiːvə/; Sanskrit: शिव, Śiva; IPA: [ˈɕiʋə]; meaning "Auspicious one"), is a major Hindu deity, and one aspect of Trimurti.[2] In the Shaiva tradition of Hinduism, Shiva is seen as the Supreme God. In the Smarta tradition, he is regarded as one of the five primary forms of God.[3]

Followers of Hinduism who focus their worship upon Shiva are called Shaivites or Shaivas (Sanskrit Śaiva).[4] Shaivism, along with Vaiṣṇava traditions that focus on Vishnu and Śākta traditions that focus on the goddess Shakti are three of the most influential denominations in Hinduism.[3]

Shiva is usually worshipped in the abstract form of Shiva linga. In images, he is generally represented as immersed in deep meditation or dancing the Tandava upon Maya, the demon of ignorance in his manifestation of Nataraja, the lord of the dance.

The Sanskrit word Shiva (Devanagari: शिव, śiva) is an adjective meaning "auspicious, kind, gracious".[5][6] As a proper name it means "The Auspicious One", used as a euphemistic name for Rudra.[6] In simple English transliteration it is written either as Shiva or Siva. The adjective śiva, meaning "auspicious", is used as an attributive epithet not particularly of Rudra, but of several other Vedic deities.[7] In the Rig Veda, Indra uses this word to describe himself several times. (2:20:3, 6:45:17, 8:93:3)

The Sanskrit word śaiva means "relating to the god Shiva", and this term is the Sanskrit name both for one of the principal sects of Hinduism and for a member of that sect.[8] It is used as an adjective to characterize certain beliefs and practices, such as Shaivism.[9]

Adi Sankara, in his interpretation of the name Shiva, the 27th and 600th name of Vishnu sahasranama, the thousand names of Vishnu interprets Shiva to have multiple meanings: "The Pure One", or "the One who is not affected by three Gunas of Prakrti (Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas)" or "the One who purifies everyone by the very utterance of His name."[10] Swami Chinmayananda, in his translation of Vishnu sahasranama, further elaborates on that verse: Shiva means "the One who is eternally pure" or "the One who can never have any contamination of the imperfection of Rajas and Tamas".[11]

The name Shiva, in one interpretation, is speculated to have derived from the Dravidian or Tamil word Siva, meaning "to be red", as a loan translation of Rudra, "the red".[dubious – discuss][12]

Shiva's role as the primary deity of Shaivism is reflected in his epithets Mahādeva ("Great God"; mahā = Great + deva = God),[13][14] Maheśhvara ("Great Lord"; mahā = Great + īśhvara = Lord),[15][16] and Parameśhvara ("Supreme Lord").[17]

There are at least eight different versions of the Shiva Sahasranama, devotional hymns (stotras) listing many names of Shiva.[18] The version appearing in Book 13 (Anuśāsanaparvan) of the Mahabharata is considered the kernel of this tradition.[19] Shiva also has Dasha-Sahasranamas (10,000 names) that are found in the Mahanyasa. The Shri Rudram Chamakam, also known as the Śatarudriya, is a devotional hymn to Shiva hailing him by many names.[20][21]

Historical development
For the early history, see Rudra.

The worship of Shiva is a pan-Hindu tradition, practiced widely across all of India, Nepal and Sri Lanka.[22][23] Some historians believe that the figure of Shiva as we know him today was built up over time, with the ideas of many regional sects being amalgamated into a single figure.[24] How the persona of Shiva converged as a composite deity is not well documented.[25] Axel Michaels explains the composite nature of Shaivism as follows:

Like Vişņu, Śiva is also a high god, who gives his name to a collection of theistic trends and sects: Śaivism. Like Vaişņavism, the term also implies a unity which cannot be clearly found either in religious practice or in philosophical and esoteric doctrine. Furthermore, practice and doctrine must be kept separate.[26]

An example of assimilation took place in Maharashtra, where a regional deity named Khandoba is a patron deity of farming and herding castes.[27] The foremost center of worship of Khandoba in Maharashtra is in Jejuri.[28] Khandoba has been assimilated as a form of Shiva himself,[29] in which case he is worshipped in the form of a lingam.[27][30] Khandoba's varied associations also include an identification with Surya [27] and Karttikeya.[31]
[edit] The Pashupati seal
Seal discovered at Mohenjodaro shows a seated figure surrounded by animals.

A seal discovered during the excavation of Mohenjo-daro has drawn attention as a possible representation of a "proto-Shiva" figure.[32] This Pashupati (Lord of animal-like beings)[33] seal shows a seated figure, possibly ithyphallic, surrounded by animals.[34] Sir John Marshall and others have claimed that this figure is a prototype of Shiva and have described the figure as having three faces seated in a "yoga posture" with the knees out and feet joined. However, this claim is not without its share of critics, with some academics like Gavin Flood[32][35] and John Keay[36] characterizing them as unfounded.
[edit] Rudra
Main article: Rudra
Three-headed Shiva, Gandhara, 2nd century CE

Shiva as we know him today shares many features with the Vedic god Rudra[37], and both Shiva and Rudra are viewed as the same personality in a number of Hindu traditions. Rudra, the god of the roaring storm, is usually portrayed in accordance with the element he represents as a fierce, destructive deity.

The oldest surviving text of Hinduism is the Rig Veda, which is dated to between 1700 and 1100 BCE based on linguistic and philological evidence.[38] A god named Rudra is mentioned in the Rig Veda. The name Rudra is still used as a name for Shiva. In RV 2.33, he is described as the "Father of the Maruts", a group of storm gods.[39] Furthermore, the Rudram, one of the most sacred hymns of Hinduism found both in the Rig and the Yajur Vedas and addressed to Rudra, invokes him as Shiva in several instances, but the term Shiva is used as a epithet for Indra, Mitra and Agni many times.

The identification of Shiva with the older god Rudra is not universally accepted, as Axel Michaels explains:

To what extent Śiva's origins are in fact to be sought in Rudra is extremely unclear. The tendency to consider Śiva an ancient god is based on this identification, even though the facts that justify such a far-reaching assumption are meager.[40]

Rudra is called "The Archer" (Sanskrit: Śarva)[41], and the arrow is an essential attribute of Rudra.[42] This name appears in the Shiva Sahasranama, and R. K. Sharma notes that it is used as a name of Shiva often in later languages.[43] The word is derived from the Sanskrit root śarv-, which means "to injure" or "to kill"[44], and Sharma uses that general sense in his interpretive translation of the name Śarva as "One who can kill the forces of darkness".[43] The names Dhanvin ("Bowman")[45] and Bāṇahasta ("Archer", literally "Armed with arrows in his hands")[45][46] also refer to archery.
[edit] Identification with Vedic deities

Shiva's rise to a major position in the pantheon was facilitated by his identification with a host of Vedic deities, including Agni, Indra, Prajāpati, Vāyu, and others.[47]
[edit] Agni

Rudra and Agni have a close relationship.[48][49] The identification between Agni and Rudra in the Vedic literature was an important factor in the process of Rudra's gradual development into the later character as Rudra-Shiva.[50] The identification of Agni with Rudra is explicitly noted in the Nirukta, an important early text on etymology, which says, "Agni is called Rudra also."[51] The interconnections between the two deities are complex, and according to Stella Kramrisch:

The fire myth of Rudra-Śiva plays on the whole gamut of fire, valuing all its potentialities and phases, from conflagration to illumination.[52]

In the Śatarudrīa, some epithets of Rudra, such as Sasipañjara ("Of golden red hue as of flame") and Tivaṣīmati ("Flaming bright"), suggest a fusing of the two deities.[53] Agni is said to be a bull[54], and Lord Shiva possesses a bull as his vehicle, Nandi. The horns of Agni, who is sometimes characterized as a bull, are mentioned.[55][56] In medieval sculpture, both Agni and the form of Shiva known as Bhairava have flaming hair as a special feature.[57]
[edit] Indra

The Indologist Koenraad Elst proposes that Shiva of Puranic Hinduism is a continuation of the Vedic Indra.[citation needed] He gives several reasons for his hypothesis. Both Shiva and Indra are known for having a thirst for Soma. Both are associated with mountains, rivers, male fertility, fierceness, fearlessness, warfare, transgression of established mores, the Aum sound, and the Supreme Self. In the Rig Veda, the term śiva is used to refer to Indra. (2.20.3,[58] 6.45.17,[59][60] and 8.93.3 [61])

* Third eye: Shiva is often depicted with a third eye, with which he burned Desire (Kāma) to ashes.[62] There has been controversy regarding the original meaning of Shiva's name Tryambakam (Sanskrit: त्र्यम्बकम्), which occurs in many scriptural sources.[63] In classical Sanskrit, the word ambaka denotes "an eye", and in the Mahabharata, Shiva is depicted as three-eyed, so this name is sometimes translated as "having three eyes".[64] However, in Vedic Sanskrit, the word ambā or ambikā means "mother", and this early meaning of the word is the basis for the translation "having three mothers" that was used by Max Müller and Arthur Macdonell.[65][66] Since no story is known in which Shiva had three mothers, E. Washburn Hopkins suggested that the name refers not to three mothers, but to three mother-goddesses who are collectively called the Ambikās.[67] Other related translations have been "having three wives or sisters" or were based on the idea that the name actually refers to the oblations given to Rudra, which according to some traditions were shared with the goddess Ambikā.[68]

* Crescent moon: Shiva bears on his head the crescent moon.[69] The epithet Chandraśekhara (Sanskrit: चन्द्रशेखर "Having the moon as his crest" - chandra = "moon", śekhara = "crest, crown")[70][71][72] refers to this feature. The placement of the moon on his head as a standard iconographic feature dates to the period when Rudra rose to prominence and became the major deity Rudra-Shiva.[73] The origin of this linkage may be due to the identification of the moon with Soma, and there is a hymn in the Rig Veda where Soma and Rudra are jointly emplored, and in later literature, Soma and Rudra came to be identified with one another, as were Soma and the moon.[74]

* Ashes: Shiva smears his body with ashes (bhasma).[75] Some forms of Shiva, such as Bhairava, are associated with a very old Indian tradition of cremation-ground asceticism that was practiced by some groups who were outside the fold of brahmanic orthodoxy.[76] These practices associated with cremation grounds are also mentioned in the Pali canon of Theravada Buddhism.[77] One epithet for Shiva is "inhabitant of the cremation ground" (Sanskrit: śmaśānavāsin, also spelled Shmashanavasin), referring to this connection.[78]

* Matted hair: Shiva's distinctive hair style is noted in the epithets Jaṭin, "the one with matted hair"[79], and Kapardin, "endowed with matted hair"[80] or "wearing his hair wound in a braid in a shell-like (kaparda) fashion".[81] A kaparda is a cowrie shell, or a braid of hair in the form of a shell, or, more generally, hair that is shaggy or curly.[82]

* Blue throat: The epithet Nīlakaṇtha (Sanskrit नीलकण्ठ; nīla = "blue", kaṇtha = "throat")[83][84] refers to a story in which Shiva drank the poison churned up from the world ocean.[85][86] (See Halāhala.) The Hari Vanśa Purana, on the other hand, attributes the colour of Shiva's throat to an episode in which Vishnu compels Shiva to fly after taking him by the throat and nearly strangling him.[87]

Shiva bearing the descent of the Ganges River as Parvati and Bhagiratha and the bull Nandi look, folio from a Hindi manuscript by the saint Narayan, circa 1740

* Sacred Ganga: The Ganga river flows from the matted hair of Shiva. The epithet Gaṅgādhara ("bearer of the river Gaṅgā") refers to this feature.[88][89] The Ganga (Ganges), one of the major rivers of the country, is said to have made her abode in Shiva's hair.[90]

* Tiger skin: He is often shown seated upon a tiger skin,[75] an honour reserved for the most accomplished of Hindu ascetics, the Brahmarishis.[91]

* Serpents: Shiva is often shown garlanded with a snake.[92]

* Trident: (Sanskrit: Trishula): Shiva's particular weapon is the trident.[75]

* Drum: A small drum shaped like an hourglass is known as a damaru (Sanskrit: ḍamaru).[93][94] This is one of the attributes of Shiva in his famous dancing representation[95] known as Nataraja. A specific hand gesture (mudra) called ḍamaru-hasta (Sanskrit for "ḍamaru-hand") is used to hold the drum.[96] This drum is particularly used as an emblem by members of the Kāpālika sect.[97]

* Nandī: Nandī, also known as Nandin, is the name of the bull that serves as Shiva's mount (Sanskrit: vāhana).[98][99] Shiva's association with cattle is reflected in his name Paśupati, or Pashupati (Sanskrit: पशुपति), translated by Sharma as "lord of cattle"[100] and by Kramrisch as "lord of animals", who notes that it is particularly used as an epithet of Rudra.[101]

* Gaṇa: The Gaṇas (Devanagari: गण) are attendants of Shiva and live in Kailash. They are often referred to as the Boothaganas, or ghostly hosts, on account of their nature. Generally benign, except when their lord is transgressed against, they are often invoked to intercede with the lord on behalf of the devotee. Ganesha was chosen as their leader by Shiva, hence Ganesha's title gaṇa-īśa or gaṇa-pati, "lord of the gaṇas".[102]

* Mount Kailāsa: Mount Kailash in the Himalayas is his traditional abode.[75] In Hindu mythology, Mount Kailāsa is conceived as resembling a Linga, representing the center of the universe.[103]

* Varanasi: Varanasi (Benares) is considered as the city specially loved by Shiva, and is one of the holiest places of pilgrimage in India. It is referred to, in religious contexts, as Kashi.[104]

[edit] Forms and depictions

According to Gavin Flood, "Śiva is a god of ambiguity and paradox," whose attributes include opposing themes.[105] The ambivalent nature of this deity is apparent in some of his names and the stories told about him.
[edit] Destroyer versus benefactor
Shiva carrying the corpse of his first consort Dakshayani (Sati)

In the Yajurveda, two contrary sets of attributes for both malignant or terrific (Sanskrit: rudra) and benign or auspicious (Sanskrit: śiva) forms can be found, leading Chakravarti to conclude that "all the basic elements which created the complex Rudra-Śiva sect of later ages are to be found here."[106] In the Mahabharata, Shiva is depicted as "the standard of invincibility, might, and terror", as well as a figure of honor, delight, and brilliance.[107] The duality of Shiva's fearful and auspicious attributes appears in contrasted names.

The name Rudra (Sanskrit: रुद्र) reflects his fearsome aspects. According to traditional etymologies, the Sanskrit name Rudra is derived from the root rud-, which means "to cry, howl".[108] Stella Kramrisch notes a different etymology connected with the adjectival form raudra, which means "wild, of rudra nature", and translates the name Rudra as "the wild one" or "the fierce god".[109] R. K. Sharma follows this alternate etymology and translates the name as "terrible".[110] Hara (Sanskrit: हर) is an important name that occurs three times in the Anushasanaparvan version of the Shiva sahasranama, where it is translated in different ways each time it occurs, following a commentorial tradition of not repeating an interpretation. Sharma translates the three as "one who captivates", "one who consolidates", and "one who destroys."[111] Kramrisch translates it as "the ravisher".[86] Another of Shiva's fearsome forms is as Kāla (Sanskrit: काल), "time", and as Mahākāla (Sanskrit: महाकाल), "great time", which ultimately destroys all things.[112][113][114] Bhairava (Sanskrit: भैरव), "terrible" or "frightful"[115], is a fierce form associated with annihilation.[116]

In contrast, the name Śaṇkara (Sanskrit: शङ्कर), "beneficent"[43] or "conferring happiness"[117] reflects his benign form. This name was adopted by the great Vedanta philosopher Śaṇkara (c. 788-820 CE), who is also known as Shankaracharya.[118][119] The name Śambhu (Sanskrit: शम्भु), "causing happiness", also reflects this benign aspect.[120][121]

BMC Bandra West Satyanarayan Puja

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I shot this a few nights back, and this kid was a genius he will make a great photographer , he kept saying cheese after each shot I took of him..

It was the event of Satyanarayan Puja at BMC Bandra West Ward office at St Martina Road..

About Satyanarayan Puja


The Satyanarayan Puja is a Hindu (Devanāgarī: हिन्दु) religious observance. It is a ritual performed by Hindus before/on any major occasion like marriage, house warming ceremony etc. It can also be performed on any day for any reason.It is believed the ceremony originated in Bengal as Satya Pir ritual performed by all communities (Hindu, Muslim and buddhists) and later in 1800s morphed into Satyanarayan puja.[1],[2],[3]

The Satyanarayana Puja is usually done on the Purnima day of every month (the day of the full moon) or a Sankranti. It is also done on special occasions and during times of achievements as an offering of gratitude to the Lord. These occasions include marriage, graduation, new job, and the purchase of a new home to name a few. In addition, it is said that a devotional performance of this puja will bear children to couples trying to start a family.

The puja starts by a prayer to Lord Ganesha, to remove all obstacles that may occur as a result of incorrectly performing the puja. This is done by chanting all the names of Lord Ganesha and offering prasad (a food offering, usually consisting of one of Lord Ganesha's favorite foods - modak, a sugar and coconut mixture, or ladu) and the showering of flower petals.

Another part of the prayer involves a prayer to the Navagraha's - the nine important celestial beings in the universe. They consist of Surya (the Sun), Chandra (the moon), Angaaraka/Chevaai (Mars), Budha (Mercury), Guru aka Bruhaspati (Jupiter), Shukra (Venus), Sani (Saturn), Rahu (the head of the Demon snake), and Ketu (the tail of the Demon snake).

The rest of the puja consists of worship to Satyanarayana, an extremely benevolent form of Lord Vishnu. First "panchamritam" is used to clean the place where the deity is placed. After placing the deity in the correct position, Satyanaraya swami is worshipped. Names of Satyanarayana are chanted along with offering of a variety of prasad (including a mixture of milk, honey, ghee/butter, yogurt, sugar) and flower petals.

Another requirement of the puja is that the story of the puja be heard among all those observing and partaking in the pooja. The story involves the origin of the puja, the benefits of it, and the potential mishaps that may occur with the careless performance of the puja.

The prayer concludes with an Aarti, which consists of revolving a small fire-lit-lamp in the vicinity of an image of the Lord. After the puja is over, participants and observers of the pooja are required to ingest in the prasad that was offered and blessed by the Lord.

It is told that Satyanarayan Katha is in REVA volume of Skanda Purana. But this volume is devoted to pilgrimages on the valley of river REVA. In Satyanarayana there is no Reva river. In original Skanda Purana there is nothing like Satyanarayana. Recent Skanda Puranas added it with clear note of its new addition in Skanda.
[edit] Pooja (Prayer) Vidhi (performing method)

The Satyanarayan Puja is performed in reverence to the Narayan form of Lord Vishnu. The Lord in this form is considered an embodiment of truth. This puja is conducted to ensure abundance in ones life. Many people carry out this puja immediately after or along with an auspicious occasion like a marriage or moving into a new house or any other success in life. It is believed the ceremony originated in Bengal as Satya Pir and was later adapted into Satyanarayan puja.

The Satyanarayan puja can be performed on any day. It is not a puja confined to any festivities. But Poornima (full moon day) or Sankranti are considered to be most auspicious day for this puja.

Performing this puja in the evening is considered more appropriate. However one can do it in the morning as well. On the day of the puja, the devotee has to fast. After bathing the person can begin the puja.
[edit] Materials needed for the puja

* Sinni': A special type of food offering, which is prepared by mixing unboiled milk, flour, sugar, smashed bananas, and other flavours like cinnamon etc., or optional garnishing like groundnuts, cashews, cherries, crushed coconuts/fruits etc.
* Kumkum powder, turmeric powder, rangoli
* Incense sticks, camphor.
* Thirty betel leaves, thirty betel nuts, two coconuts.
* Five almonds,
* Flowers to offer
* One thousand tulsi leaves; banana tree as a canopy[2]
* One square shaped wooden platform
* Two copper jars, two plates.
* One shawl
* A mixture of milk, curd, honey, sugar, ghee to make the panchamrita, Sandal paste.
* Akshat (rice grains) with kumkum powder.
* Attar, Indian perfume.
* Two flower garlands, conch shell, bell, a cloth, a ghee lamp and an oil lamp.

[edit] Shri Satyanarayan Katha

Shri Satyanarayan katha (narrative) comes from the Skandha purana, Reva kaanda. Suta Puraanikji narrated these stories, in Neimishaaranya to the Rishis who were performing a 1 ,000 year yajna for the benefit of mankind lead by Shounakji .

For those who observe the fast religiously and regularly, there are some great lessons to be learned from the 'katha' (narration)

This is shown by characters who ignored their promise to perform the puja after their wish had been fulfilled. They suffered as a result. Therefore one is to deduce that one must stick to the promise given to the Lord in exchange of the desire fulfilled by His Grace. One is not to ignore or/and forget the Lord's Grace. Prasad is symbolic of God's Grace which Kalavati ignored as she learned of her husband's safe return.

One can understand her eagerness in wanting to be re-united with her beloved, but one must understand that if one forgets to be thankful for gifts received from the Lord, one would have to go through another test until one remembers to remember.

When the rich merchant is asked what the boat contains, he untruthfully replies 'Only dry leaves' and the Mendicant says 'So be it' The above incident tells us that the spoken word has power. What you speak, manifests. Hence one must not speak an untruth. Especially an inauspicious untruth.

In the last story one learns that no one is higher or lower in status in the eyes of the Lord. Hence one must accord respect to whoever it may be, who is taking the name of God.

Once Naradji went to the Lord to ask Him for a panacea for the miseries of the world. Sri Satyanarayan told Naradji that there is a fast which can be performed by anyone. The fast would result in the fulfillment of his desires and also liberation from the cycle of birth and death.

Sri Narayana told Naradji how a poor, old and ailing Brahmin as well as an impoverished woodcutter, had all their wishes fulfilled, became prosperous, and ultimately attained salvation by the correct and devotional performance of the Sri Satyanarayan fast and puja.

The second story consists of a childless merchant who asked a king the correct procedure of the Satyanarayan fast. After learning the same, the merchant and his wife decided to perform the fast if they get a child. Sometime later his wife Lilavati became pregnant and she delivered a girl who they called Kalavati. Lilavati reminded her husband about his promise to keep the fast, but the merchant postponed it saying that he would do so when the daughter is ready to be married. The merchant did not fulfill his promise when Lilavati, the daughter is wedded. The Lord decided to remind the merchant of his promise.

The merchant and his son-in-law went to a city called Ratnasara in connection with some business. There, a theft took place. As the thief was being chased by the concerned authority, the robber threw the booty where the two merchants were resting, and escaped. The merchant and the son-in-law were arrested. Meanwhile Lilavati and Kalavati also lost their belongings due to some thefts and were rendered beggars. While trying to get some food, Kalavati saw a Satyanarayan puja being performed and told her mother about it. Lilavati remembered that she had not performed the promised puja and hence she was facing all these difficulties. She decided to perform the fast and the Puja. The king was informed in a dream, that the merchants were innocent so he released them after compensating them with a lot of wealth.

The merchants decided to come home to their wives. The Lord decided to test them again and came in the guise of a mendicant and asked what kind of load they were carrying on their ship. The merchant mentioned that they had only dried leaves. The mendicant said: "So be it" When the merchant saw that there were only dried leaves aboard, he asked the pious man for forgiveness. The ever merciful Lord forgave them one more time.

As the ship approached the city, the merchant sent word to his wife and daughter about their arrival. Lilavati rushed to meet her husband while telling her daughter to complete the puja. Kalavati performed the puja, but in her haste to meet her husband she did not take the prasad. When she eagerly arrived to meet her husband, she could see neither the ship nor the inmates.

The merchant realised that all the obstacles that they were facing were because he had not kept his promise of performing the Satyanarayan puja. He decided to do it. As he was performing it, he got an insight that it was due to the neglect of Lilavati taking the prasad, that they were going through further difficulties.

Kalavati rushed back home and respectfully partook of the prasad. The family was then re-united and they lived a long, happy and prosperous life never forgetting to thank the Lord for all that they received. After their death they got the ultimate gift: 'Moksha' (Liberation from the cycle of life and death)

Suta continuing his narrative, tells the Rishis, the story of a king called Angadwaja. Once, as King Angadwaja was returning from a hunting expedition, he stopped to rest under a tree for a while. Nearby a small group of cowherd boys were playing the game of doing puja. They offered their humble parsad to the king, who out of pride left it untouched. Subsequently the king suffered great losses and realised that that was due to the contempt he had shown for those children's puja. The king returned to the spot where he had met the cowherds, and with great faith performed the puja with them. The king regained all that he had lost.

Suta now told the Rishis that the Satyanarayan fast was very effective during Kaliyuga and that whoever read or heard this story would be rid of all sorrows and difficulties.

You Telecom The Pain Never Ends

My net wenr dead just before midnight , and several messages to You Telecom my service provider is water on a ducks ass..

I received one message from them that I share with you..

Dear Sir,

We acknowledge with thanks the receipt of your e-mail.

Same is already escalated to our location operations and we are working on it to get the same ( connectivity problem faced during nights ) rectified at the earliest.

We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience caused.

Kind Regards,
Navin Kumar Singh
( Customer care )
YOU Broadband & Cable India Limited

Dear Mr Naveen Singh Bhai

I told Arif to check my log and see the number of times my internet has failed even a few minutes back it stopped and honestly you guys dont seem to be bothered I am only a drop in the ocean and you guys punish me for being an existing client of over 6 years ..You dont even compensate me for the outage and the time I have lost ..I have no personal agenda against You Telecom but your infrastructure and all your bigwigs on the top are totally apathetic to the problems at grass root level..

Honestly even you have done nothing to alleviate my problems..

As Ever Firoze Shakir

Its 11.20 and I am going through hell the page opens slowly my computer crashes and all this is thanks to your service ..i want you to feel my pain i blog at night and with your bad connection it is next to impossible why dont you check my log from your end

And even Lord Shiva cant help me this time ..my net died just a few hours before midnight , I went to sleep , its 3 am I am, blogging this now..

I Shoot What I See

i shoot
what i see
my camera
with me
poetically free
inner wear
for attention
street scenery
we all are
in various
lost moments
as alms
on the soul
of humanity

What Is Pain !

Sometimes I am fed up of this miserable life on earth , you are not governed by the good deeds you do, your life is hyped for all the wrong reasons , for me at the age of 57 life is watching a fucked movie in a fucked cinema hall, the usher giving head to guy a few seats away from me, this is life as I see it through the viewfinder of my fucked soul.

I shoot pain , even if it conceals itself behind a pretentious smile, I shoot pain all the time and it shoots me too with a greater intensity and velocity.

As a photographer I shot this little kid totally in awe of me as I am in awe of him , he is a giant I am a dwarf our roles reversed..Yes shooting kids is nothing but shooting the softer side of God..his harsher side is when I shoot beggars and the scums on the road..

My quintessential angst is supported on the crippled legs of pain , and pain keeps me going..to kill my self would take a brief second but to die would take me a life time.. Read it the way you like it there is nothing cryptic to the morbidity of my soul..

And than I shiver when someone asks another photographer what lens do you use.. this is life boxed in within life.

Photography makes you a philosopher though you may have not read Nietzsche at all, photography is poetry without words , words drain the soul..but images keep it whole

And long after I shot this picture I kept thinking about the look on this childs face I closed my eyes and realized he was aping my own fear , my own confusion my own anguish..

Yes he had shot me perfectly the way I am.. my iner being if it had a face it would like identical to the face of this child...

What Could I Tweak Here

As a photographer I shot a little child, she stared deep into my eyes ,she mocks me actually , maybe as a poet in this picture I shot my mothers childhood, my daughter and my grand daughter too,..my grand daughter is about 2 years old.

I could have put this in a frame , desaturated it and hyped it as an arty picture , but I shot this fast it was not an arty picture at all..the darkness at the back is part of her somber surroundings and slum life..

In barely a second that I shot this picture she shot me too, she exposed me too, she questioned me as to what would be gained by shooting my picture,.her future is not in her frail hands at all, yes a girls life changes like a storm in a teacup, aman remains man a girl child becomes a wife a mother and a teardrop of humanity..

Now do I bore you with a poem , no I wont , poems have to be inspired and she inspires me to write make this a part of my blog on pain ..

The camera is a magical wand what God creates the camera recreates giving it a permanence that was lacking in momentum of a thought, the camera is an instrument of peace it gives abundantly and you dont have to pay to share in this joy.. as a photo blog.

I am swept away by what I shoot off my feet , ordinary situations in life that overpower my soul..yes I am a street photographer my heaven on earth is the dust of the streets ..raw emotions that isolate themselves from life to become a part of my cameras picture stories.

And I could go on but I shall stop..

When to stop is the essence of photography and poetry..measured moments of lifes melodrama replayed on your soul too..

I congratulate Benn Bell for his Diploma and inspiring others to study.. I envy him

I am far too old to re educate myself and the education system in India sucks wisdom is held together as boulders in a knap sack making a child an old man but not wise much before he ages.

The Light of My Pictures

123,772 items / 865,904 views

To get such a response , is possible if the kids like you , most of them like me because I am dressed strangely , but it is my camera they love , I doubt if any one of these kids have seen the pictures I shot of them..I could make copies and give it to them but I dont ..I used to do it once but it is an expensive affair as I shoot prodigiously non stop..

My pictures are on the internet and most of these kids may not know that at all.

I dont know their names I shoot without language , I thank them , always .

But they love to pose for me I shoot as I see them I dont change their direction or bother about light, they are light of my pictures even in the dark somber surroundings they live in.