6.21.2009

Supreme consciousness - The experience of Lord Shiva

Lost in the surrounding din my little mind tried hard to keep the internal silence intact. Words, sounds and all the wasted energy continued to pierce through the walls of my defenses to cut into this silent world I called my own. Moving from event to event, across people of various backgrounds I happened to make interesting conversation with a couple of them.

These people were regular folk who had found their happiness in the little things they did. Yet they caught the essence of Shiva when they described him in what they had read in poetry, in dance, in abhinaya,in music... Listening to them and observing them was a totally overwhelming experience...Why? Their description captured Lord Shiva and my emotions jumped more with every word and action that expressed itself.

In their expression I looked on, to hear the primordial sound echo across the floor as they recited a few verses. In their action I could hear the damaru play aloud echoing the sound of OM, bringing its all encompassing presence into my mind and soul. In their actions lived Shiva in his divine movements as they depicted the deer, the gajasamhara, the taming of the snake, the opening of the third eye, the grand nataraja, the fire bowl of enlightenment furiously burning on, and abhaya, that single message of Fear not.

He was there, present in their thoughts, in their movements, in their actions and in the life that twinkled in their eyes as they described him. This is bhakti, shivahood and the presence of Shiva makes the heart melt when they look into the middle of thin air and shake the imaginary damaru, through the art of Bharata or make the sound through the verses of Manikyavachakar... There is Shiva coming alive in front of him.

It is beautiful to see his character appearing as they paint him through their abhinaya, as they bring forth the awakening third eye, sway around to show the flying jata mukuta, moving in grace to show the beauty of gangadhara shiva, showing the swift aggression in tying the tiger skin around his waist. Isnt this just the beauty of lord Shiva that makes tears well up in my eyes. At this moment, all the world stops, its the perfect getaway from the din.

This is probably a step closer to the experience of feeling Shiva consciousness, when the heart skips a beat and the tears roll out and bliss engulfs us and we identify Shiva in the movements of an unassuming soul who just danced a few steps around to describe him or just recited a few verses as they explain the same bliss that they felt.

Jatatavee gala jjala pravaha pavitha sthale|
Gale avalabhya lambithaam bhujanga thunga malikaam||
Dama ddama dama ddama ninnadava damarvayam|
Chakara chanda thandavam thanothu na shiva shivam||

From the forest of his matted lock, water flows and wets his neck,
On which hangs the greatest of snake like a garland,
And his drum incessantly plays damat, damat, damat, damat,
And Shiva is engaged in the very vigorous manly dance,
To bless and shower, prosperity on all of us.

Jata kataha sambhramabrama nillimpa nirjari|
Vilola veechi vallari viraja mana moordhani||
Dhaga dhaga daga jjwala lalata patta pavake|
Kishora Chandra shekare rathi prathi kshanam mama||

The celestial river agitatedly moving through his matted hair,
Which makes his head shine with those soft waves,
And his forehead shining like a brilliant fire-daga daga,
And the crescent of moon which is an ornament to his head,
Makes my mind love him each and every second.

Shiva echoes all around us, Shiva purifies the thoughts in our minds, Shiva brings us peace and an unnatural blissful excitement that can reduce all other miseries in our lives to nothing. This is the state of constant equilibruim that I hope to achieve some day as life passes me by. This is probably the slow but sure way to the highest realm of Satya Loka.

Courtesy:
Shiva Thandava Stotram
By Ravana
Translated by P. R. Ramachander

12 comments:

JC said...

Hi Kavitha, As per ‘wise ancient Hindus’, every individual is supposed to seek the ‘absolute truth’ in one’s own way, for experience over long duration by historians also shows that there is no particular ‘beaten track’ that alone could lead each and everyone to make one eventually reach the Unseen within one life-span…

There are however essences of different ‘truths’, or sayings, made available by historians/ poets at all times in all corners of the globe (in larger numbers in ‘India’, the most ancient civilization)…

One such saying, to the effect, conveys the truth of animal world, particularly in the apparently chaotic ‘present’ when numbers are rapidly increasing and a large percentage of the population continues to remain below the ‘poverty line’ despite ‘Independence’ and, therefore, blame for the ‘tears in the eyes’ of a large number now entirely rests on ‘us’ only, and not on 'foreign rulers', “Prayers can’t be sung on empty stomach”…

Perhaps the above reflects 'slavery of Time', ie, Mahakal Shiva who believably resides within 'us' all too!

JC said...

Happiness and, therefore, bliss also is a state of mind...

The 'Hindu phiosophy', therefore, lays stress on 'meditation', or training of mind, right from the early childhood with a view to attaining a stable state of mind (mental maturity) under all conditions by the time one also attains physical maturity...With the apparent realisatin by Yogis that man himself is an instrument/ tool in the hands of God, it is thus just as one would like his/ her electrical equipments to perform normally despite heavy voltage fluctuations in the electric supply by the generally erratic/ imperfect 'Government/ department' concerned...

PN Subramanian said...

आप जैसे पवित्र आत्माओं के आलेख पढ़कर बड़ी आत्मग्लानि होती है हम तो मजबूर है महंगाई की मार सहने के लिए , बिजली नहीं, पानी नहीं इन सब से उबरें तब न आप की बात समझ पाएंगे.JC जी ने बड़ा अच्छा कहा. भूके पेट प्रार्थना थोड़े ही की जा सकती है. आपका आलेक बहुत सुन्दर है, ज्ञानवर्धक है और एक आत्मिक सुख प्रदान करती है. आभार.

JC said...

सुब्रह्मनियनजी, यह तो एक तुच्छ प्रयास है अपने पूर्वजों के विचारों को फिर से, आज के परिवेश में, अपने अंदाज़/ दृष्टिकोण से समझने का...

JC said...

Hi Kavitha, 'I' thought 'I' should explain that Mr Subrahmanian while thanking you for the write up expressed how an average man today finds it difficult to find time and appreciate 'highly spiritual thoughts' such as the one brought out in your post due to day-to-day struggle for electricity, water, etc...'I' also explained tht it was merely 'my' attempt to read the mind of the wise ancients with reference to present day thoughts...

Kavitha said...

Wow!

Dhanyavad.

All i want to say is, we will always have things to worry about, food water and shelter will always be a running thought in the mind, but should it be the only thought in the mind of the intellect? Should it control us so much that we forget that we have other focus far more important that it in our lives?

We need to think again, compartmentalize the thoughts and take mind time out to just dwell on our journey to Shivahood.

Strange but nice things is that we can continue to stay in Shivahood and still live regular lives, the only difference is the problem appears less painful.

It appears to be a way of life and not a problem.

Regards
Kavitha

P.N. Subramanian said...

Conversely it means fighting for the daily dose of drinking water would elavate us to shivahood, fine. Here the intellect could be a common man.

JC said...

Hi Shri Subramanian ji, In 'Hindu Mythology' there are many examples of even 'dacoits' turning into 'saints' when they came in contact with some 'spiritually elevated soul', ie, an image or model of the Supreme Being itself, but occupying relatively a 'higher spiritual level' in the hierarchy apparent in all aspects of 'Nature' (say, functioning even in Kaliyuga, like a branded instrument that belongs to the ideal period called Satyuga)!

And, Shiva (the immortal Bhootnath of 'Satyam Shivam Sundram' fame) is also called 'Natraj', where 'nat', in 'present day' terms, is one who walks freely a tightrope at a height above the ground...and therefore likely to fall if he/ she falters, or crosses the 'Lakshaman Rekha'...

Human life also, similarly, is understood to involve maintaining balance between the 'material' and the 'spiritual' all the while...the majority generally failing in the task, whereas eventually it was only possible for the 'chosen one', Treyambakeshwar, Brahma-Vishnu-Mahesh the three-in-one God - in physical form - in the words of ancient 'Hindus' (whose inferior models 'we' all humans also are, and therefore needing 'correction'), who received blessings of the Mother, the one and only formless Creator cum Destroyer and Preserver too!

Words have inherent weakness, they can't express a realisation, although even a hint might suffice to a 'wise'...

P.N. Subramanian said...

Thank you JC ji for your kind attempts to clear the clog from from my foggy head.

JC said...

Subramanian ji, Like you also said it, in the 'present' the 'outside world' appears to be getting more and more complicated what with population explosion and consequent load on mother earth and 'her managers', in human form, concerned with meeting of the basic needs of the over 6 billion people, besides innumerable other demands on the apparently depleting natural resources, and so on...

Obviously, it is only a 'Hindu' - who is believably a part of the ancient most civilisation - who perhaps can learn the 'truth' from the vast literature, already available in 'India', as it was apparently realised by our ancestors, which the apparent shortcomings in existing systems, and on the other hand exposure to thoughts in the Gita at some stage that has apparently inspired me...And thus today 'I' can perhaps feel that the 'fog in my yead' is a little bit cleared and thus 'I' can perhaps interpret a little better the hidden meanings in the wise ancients' sayings...

'I' would however like to improve upon those when and if cetain shortcomings come into anyone's notice, and 'I' am accordingly duly informed...

Thanks!

P.N. Subramanian said...

JC ji,
I express my gratitudes for offering clarifications with regard to the Hindu Thought. I am immensely benefited.

JC said...

Subramaniam ji, 'I' am glad 'I' could be of some help in re-reading 'Hindu thoughts' and perhaps realise what 'we' otherwise were missing!

There is a saying, "Bagal mein baccha, nagar dhindhora!" That is, 'Mother looking everywhere for her 'lost child', not realising that it was all the while on her lap only!"