Posted by: adbhutam | March 15, 2015

THE FOE OF BONDAGE

The Foe of Bondage

In the verses recited as a prelude to the Bhagavad Gita is this verse:

अद्वैतामृतवर्षिणीं भगवतीमष्टादशाध्यायिनीं अम्ब त्वामनुसन्दधामि भगवद्गीते भवद्वेषिणीम् ॥ १॥

O Mother Bhagavadgita, I meditate on you who are the nectar-rain of Advaita, consisting of eighteen chapters, verily the destroyer of bondage.

The word भवद्वेषिणी literally means: the one who is a hater of samsāra. In other words, the Jñāna tattva that is what the Bhagavadgita teaching is, does not permit samsāra to thrive; it puts an end to it.

The idea contained in the above verse is beautifully stated in the following verses of the Padmapurāṇa:

Second Chapter where Brahmā addresses Viṣṇu:

कालकूटमिदं पश्य कण्ठभूषणमीशितुः ।

सुराङ्गनानां सर्वासां कण्ठमंगलदायकम् ।

[Behold the terrible poison which is an ornament in Shiva’s neck. It is the ordainer of all auspiciousness to the celestial women]

हैमवत्या विशालाक्ष्याः कटाक्षैरमृतोपमैः ।

शीतलीकृतमीशस्य कण्ठभूषां भवद्विषम् ।

[By the benevolent nectarine side-glances of Hemāvati, Viśālākṣī, the poison has been rendered cool, and is the neck-ornament of Śiva and is therefore is the destroyer of samsāra.]

श्रुत्वेति ब्रह्मणो वाक्यं देवासुरवचांसि च ।

स्थापयित्वा विषं कण्ठे नीलकण्ठश्शिवोऽभवत् ।

[Hearing these words of Brahmā and the words of the devas and asuras, Śiva became Nīlakaṇṭha by placing the poison in His throat and was auspicious]

ततो दैत्याश्च देवाश्च ब्रह्मेन्द्रोपेन्द्रसम्हिताः ।

तुष्टुवुर्देवदेवेशं नीलकण्ठमुमापतिम् ।

[Then the asuras and the devas, along with Brahmā, Indra and Upendra (Viṣṇu), pleased the God of Gods, Nīlakaṇṭha, the consort of Umā]

ओन्नमो नीलकण्ठाय महादेवाय ते नमः ।

नमश्शिवाय सोमाय शाश्वताय नमो नमः ।

[‘Om, Prostrations to Thee, Nīlakaṇṭha, Mahādeva, Śiva, Soma, the Eternal, Prostrations again and again.’]

In that very Padmapurāṇa, we have the Devaṛṣis say:

ओन्नमो नीलकण्ठायेत्यब्रुवन् मन्त्रमैश्वरम् ।

संसारविषदष्टानामुत्तमं परमौषधम् ।

[By devoutly chanting the mantra ‘Om namo nīlakaṇṭhāya’ which is that of Ishwara, the foremost ambrosia to those afflicted by the poison of samsāra]

ध्यायमानो महादेवं नीलकठञ्चतुर्भुजम् ।

प्रणम्य गिरिजाधीशं प्रणतार्तिहरं परम् ।

[By meditating upon prostrating to Mahādeva, nīlakaṇṭha, the Four-armed, the Lord of Mother Girijā, the Supreme one benevolent to His devotees]

प्राह तेषामृषीणां तां कथां श्रीनन्दिकेश्वरः ।

श्रोतॄणामपि वक्तॄणामपि कैवल्यदायिनीम् ।

[Nandikeśwara recounted to the Ṛṣis that story which begets liberation to the hearers as well as the narrators]

In Padmapurāṇa, Mārkaṇḍeya says:

नीलकण्ठं विरूपाक्षं निर्मलं निरुपप्लवम् ।

नमामि शिरसा देवं किन्नो मृत्युः करिष्यति ।

[Obeisance to Nīlakaṇṭha, Virūpākṣa, the Pure, free of all troubles. What indeed can Death (samsāra) do to me when I have surrendered to Shiva?]

In the Śivarahasya, eighth Chapter we have Bhairava say:

कालकूटहर श्रीमन् कालकाल कृपानिधे ।

श्रीनीलकण्ठ कामारे उतोत इषवे नमः ।

[O Auspicious Lord, the destroyer of the Kālakūṭa poison, the Destroyer of even time (Death), the Compassionate, Nilakaṇtha, the adversary of Lust, Obeisance to Thy Arrow]

उमासहायमोमर्थं विभुं साक्षात्त्रिलोचनम् ।

नीलकण्ठं प्रशान्तस्थं ध्यायेन्नित्यमतन्द्रितः ।

[By Meditating on the Consort of Umā, the Purport of the Praṇava Om, the All-pervading, Witness, the Three-eyed, Nīlakaṇṭha, established in peace….]

The above verses form the true meaning of the purāṇic episode of the amṛta-mathanam, the churning of the milk-ocean for nectar. The story of Śiva consuming the Poison that arose then is allegorical to the inner meaning, tattva, of the Vedāntic teaching of Tat tvam asi which puts an end to samsāra. Without the understanding of this tattva delineated above, the mere story is not of any value. In Advaita, it is held that the purport of the creation passages in the Veda is in driving home the knowledge of the true nature of the Creator and not in a real creation. In the same way, the stories in the purāṇas, which are often contradictory to each other, even with respect to the same event, is not in teaching the reality of those incidents but to teach the higher, hidden, tattva.

The verses convey the meaning that Śiva who effortlessly contained the ‘viṣam’ (which is another name for ajñāna, samsāra) is the symbol of Brahman in which ignorance/bondage is superimposed, without affecting the substratum in any way whatsoever, is to be meditated upon so. Being ‘bhava-dviṣa’, the destroyer of samsāra, He grants Jñāna. That is also the teaching of the Kaivalyopaniṣat mantra 8:

उमासहायं परमेश्वरं प्रभुं त्रिलोचनं नीलकण्ठं प्रशान्तम् ।

ध्यात्वा मुनिर्गच्छति भूतयोनिं समस्तसाक्षिं तमसः परस्तात् ॥ ७॥

See also: https://adbhutam.wordpress.com/2015/02/12/turiya-shiva-of-the-kaivalyopanishat/

The verses cited above are taken from the book ‘Vedānta nāma ratna sahasram’ of Sri Paramaśivendra Saraswati, the Guru of Sri Sādāśivendra Saraswati (Brahmendra) of Nerur. The book is a collection of a thousand names of Brahman culled out from the Veda and smṛtis. The name ‘Nīlakaṇṭha’ therein is annotated with the above set of verses.

Om Tat Sat


Responses

  1. It is heartening to know that Padma Purana contains immense Shiva Stuti. It exposes the fraudulent interpolations of bigoted vaishnavas.


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