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Shiva-The Origins(must read)

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HaremSultan

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Posted: 25 June 2013 at 5:35am | IP Logged

                                Saivism

The origin of Saivism may be traced to the conception of Rudra in the Rigveda. Rudra represented the malignant and destructive phenomena in nature, which destroyed the cattle and caused diseases to the people. His wrath was sought to be appeased by offerings and prayers, a specimen of which is given below.

" O Rudra,harm not either great or small of us, harm not the growing boy, harm not the full-grown man."

"Slay not a sire among us, slay no mother here, and to our own dear bodies, Rudra, do no harm."

"Harm us not, Rudra, in our seed and progeny, harm us not in the living, nor in cows or steeds."

"Slay not our heroes in the fury of thy wrath. Bringing oblations evermore we call to thee."(Rigveda I, 114)

'Rudra, however, occupies a minor position in the Rigveda', though, like many other gods,he is occasionally described as possessing supreme power. It has been suggested that he represents the storm, ' not the storm pure and simple, but rather its baleful side, in the destructive agency of lightning'.

   The conception of Rudra is further developed in the Yajurveda, in the famous Satarudriya, where his benevolent characteristics are emphasized in addition to the malevolent ones.

'When his wrathful nature is thoroughly appeased he becomes auspicious.'

These three names, which occur at the end of the Satarudriya, were destined to become famous at no distant date.

   In the Atharvaveda, Rudra is looked upon as a supreme God, and the furthest point is reached when Svetasvatara Upanishad substitutes this active personal God in the place of the impersonal Brahman of the Upanishads. It asserts that " there these worlds by his ruling powers, who is the inmost soul of all men, and creating all beings, protects them".  " When there was simple darkness and no day or light, no entity or nonentity, siva alone existed. He was the one unchangeable thing, and he was the bright light of the sun, and from him sprang all intelligence. His form is invisible. Nobody sees him with the eye. Those who see him, dwelling in the heart, by the heart and the internal consciousness, become immortal".

Lastly  "Siva, the God, the creator and destroyer, is said to be knowable by Bhava(faith, love, or the pure heart)."

It may be added that Uma Haimavati , the spouse of Siva, is also eulogized as the supreme deity in the Kena Upanishad. Saivism, as a distinct cult, therefore goes back to a very early period.

The supreme God Rudra-Siva was at first the object of worship, not of a particular sect, but of the Aryans in general all over India, and this character it has retained down to the present day in spite of the rise of innumerable Saiva sects.

  The existence of the Saiva sects may be traced as early as the second century B.c.

 It is probable that a definite Saiva System or school was established, in imitation of the bhagavata sect, by a person called variously Lakulin, Lakutin , Lakulisa and nakulisa. The saiva sects were at first generally known as Lakula, Pasupata or Maheshvara after the name of their God or historical founder. Before the end of the period under review, however, four important schools arose, viz. Pasupata, Saiva, kapalika and Kalamukha. The main activity of these sects falls into the next period, and will be dealt with in another chapter.

 The saivas, like the Buddhists and the bhagavatas, attracted foreigners to their creed. Wema Kadphises, the kushana conqueror of india, adopted the new religion , and the reverse of his coins depicts the figure of Siva, with a long trident, leaning on Nndi or bull behind him.

 

 It must be noted here, that the image of Siva, as an object of worship, was soon replaced by Linga or Phallus. Many eminent scholars think that this element of phallic worship and probably also the whole idea of shiva as God, were borrowed by the Aryans form the SIndu civilization. But the linga cult obtained a wide currency, and almost completely ousted the likness of Siva as  an object of veneration.


Please ignore the typos. 



Edited by lucymoni - 25 June 2013 at 5:49am

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Chaithali

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Posted: 25 June 2013 at 7:00am | IP Logged
Interesting thanks.

HaremSultan

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Posted: 25 June 2013 at 9:57pm | IP Logged
Originally posted by Chaithali

Interesting thanks.

ur welcome Big smile

Tinacool

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Posted: 25 June 2013 at 10:00pm | IP Logged
Good post Lucy. Smile

HaremSultan

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Posted: 25 June 2013 at 10:03pm | IP Logged
Originally posted by consuela

Good post Lucy. Smile

thanksBig smile

HaremSultan

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Posted: 01 July 2013 at 12:17am | IP Logged

Like Vishnu, Siva is also worshiped by the majority of the Hindus. Of course, there had been rivalry between the two sects and each claimed superiority of their own god over the other but differences were mostly reconciled and now both of them are equally revered by the Hindus.

  The origin of Shiva can be traced to the concept of Rudra in the Rigveda.  Probably, he found his place among Aryan gods because of the influence of the Dravidians who had a similar god among them called Pasupati. In the Yajurveda, he is referred to as Shambu or Shankar .  In the Atharvaveda, he is regarded as the supreme God while in the Svetasvatara Upanishad, his spouse Uma or parvati is provided a similar position. Thus Siva rose into prominence in the passage of time. By the time of Sutras, Saivism had acquired all its essential features. We find references of the worship of Shiva in the form of Linga and descriptions of the wife and sons of Shiva in Graha-Sutras. By that time, the wife of Shiva too had acquired the status of an independent goddess. She was called by various names like Mahakali, Mahayogini, Durga, Sankh-dharini, etc. In the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, Shiva and his wife have been referred to at may placesl. In the Ramayana, Shiva has been named as Maheshwar, Mahadeva, Shankar, etc. while his wife has been called Uma or Parvati and has been described as the daughter of the Himalayas. In the Ramayana many episodes concerning Shiva have been given like falling of the Ganges on Earth, destruction of the Yajna of Daksha, birth of Skandha, son of Shiva, etc. In the Mahabharata, he has been referred to more than the Ramayana and emphasis has been laid on his worship and Bhakti. However, the rise of Saivism, with a philosophy and organization of its own, can not be traced back earlier than about the beginning of the Christian era. The sect, probably, was started by a person called Lakulin Nakulin near about the beginning of the 2nd century and , by the beginning of Christian era, Saivism became popular all over India and by the Gupta-age came as much popular among the Hindus as was Bhagvatism. Afterwards, saivism was divided into four important schools, viz. Pasupata, saiva, kapalika and kalamukha. However, siva is worshipped most in the form of Linga because of the influence of another sect of saivism called lingyat. Saivism is now a part of Hinduism and the worship of siva is most popular among Hindus.



a little different from above article. Wink

Surya_krsnbhakt

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Posted: 01 July 2013 at 5:39am | IP Logged
It is interesting. Thanks!
Though I have always had a doubt about Vedas and Puranas... why most of the gods glorified in the Vedas are not so glorious in the Puranas. I mean, if we consider both to be talking about the same deities at the same time. Not from the perspective of date of composition, but from the perspective of gods themselves.

HaremSultan

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Posted: 01 July 2013 at 11:39pm | IP Logged
Originally posted by Surya_krsnbhakt

It is interesting. Thanks!
Though I have always had a doubt about Vedas and Puranas... why most of the gods glorified in the Vedas are not so glorious in the Puranas. I mean, if we consider both to be talking about the same deities at the same time. Not from the perspective of date of composition, but from the perspective of gods themselves.

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