Sri Kamakoti Mandali  
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Mahapashupateshvara

 

svayaM maheshaH shvashuro nageshaH sakhA dhaneshaH tanayo gaNeshaH |
tathApi bhikShATanameva shambhoH balIyasI kevalamIshvarecChA ||

The greatness of mahAdeva as related to mokSha has been stated by shrImannArAyaNa in mahAbhArata:

nAhaM saMsAramagnAnAM sAkShAt saMsAramochakaH |
brahmAdidevatAH sarve na hi saMsAramochakAH ||
sarvamanyaM parityajya shivaM sAmbaM sadA bhaja ||

It is stated elsewhere:

mahAdeva mahAdeva mahAdeveti yo vadet |
ekena muktimApnoti dvAbhyAM shambhU R^iNI bhavet ||

For the mandAdhikArin, the worship of mahAdeva prescribed involves saguNa mUrti dhyAna. Meditating on the panchamukha svarUpa of Lord pashupati grants one puruShArtha chatuShTaya.

panchabrahmAtmako yasmAttena panchamukhaH smR^itaH ||

As mahAkAmeshvara is panchabrahmAtmaka (aggregate of brahmA, viShNu, rudra, Ishvara and sadAshiva), indicated through his five faces, he is described in the shAstras as panchamukha (five-faced). This is also indicative of the pancha krityas executed by him: sR^iShTi, sthiti, saMhAra (laya), tirodhAna and anugraha, thus establishing anuShThAna sAmya between mahAkAmeshvara and mahAkAmeshvarI.

The five faces of the Lord are described thus:

IshAnaH puruSho.aghoraH vAmaH sadyastathaiva cha |
brahmANyaitAni devasya mUrtayaH pancha vishrutAH ||

The directional aspects of the five faces of mAhadeva are described as below:

pashchime tu mukhe sadyo vAmadevastathottare |
pUrve tatpuruShaM vidyAdaghoraM chApi dakShiNe |
IshAnaH pa~nchamo  madhye sarveShAmupari sthitaH ||

pashchima mukha: sadyojAta
uttara mukha: vAmadeva
pUrva  mukha: tatpuruSha
dakShiNa mukha: aghora
Urdhva mukha: IshAna

As varNa visheSha of these mukhas is useful to know for the sake of practical meditation, we should examine the following verse:

sadyojAtaM bhavecChuklaM vAmadevaM tu pItakam |
raktastatpuruSho j~neyaH aghoraH kr^ishNa eva saH ||
IshAnaH pashchimatteShAM sarvavarNasamanvitaH ||

sadyojAta: shukla varNa
vAmadeva: pIta varNa
tatpuruSha: rakta varNa
aghora: kR^iShNa varNa
IshAna: sarvavarNa or nAnAvarNAtmakaH

It is a well-known fact that the five deities of the panchAyatana scheme represent the five elements:

AkAshasyAdhipo viShNuH agneshchaiva maheshvarI |
vAyoH sUryaH kShiterIshaH jIvanasya gaNAdhipaH ||

AkAsha: mahAviShNu
vahni: ambikA
vAyu: Aditya
kShiti: mahAdeva
jala: gaNapati

As the five faces of the Lord also represent the five elements, it can be deduced that the panchamukha svarUpa is also representative of the panchAyatana and the five deities. In the Urdhva pAshupata vidhi of the sixteenth AvaraNa of sundarI krama, worship to panchAyatana devatas along with their parivAra, astra, anugraha and angapratyangopAnga devatas are offered in vyaShTi to the five faces of pashupati and in samaShTi to mahApAshupateshvara. The samayA devatA named upa bhAsA kUTAtmikA, who represents sR^iShTi-samhAra mahAkAmeshvarI vilIna sR^iShTi-samhAra nirvana chAmuNDA, represents mahApAshupteshvara and thus pAshupata darshana, in sR^iShTi krama. In samhAra krama, the deity assumes a male form and is worshipped as mahApAshupateshvara with the same mantra but a different dhyAna mUrti.

Lord describes the significance of the five faces to girijA thus:

aindraM mukhamidaM pUrvaM tapashcharyAparaM sadA |
dakShiNaM me mukhaM divyaM raudraM samharati prajAH ||
lokakAryakaraM nityaM pashchmimaM me mukhaM priye |
vedAnadhIte satataM adbhutaM chottaraM mukham ||

The five faces or the pancha brahma mUrtis represent the following:

1.    bhUta panchaka
2.    tanmAtra panchaka
3.    karmendriya panchaka
4.    jnAnendriya panchaka
5.    tattva panchaka (puruSha, prakR^iti, buddhi, ahaMkAra, manas)
6.    kalA panchaka (nivR^itti, pratiShThA, vidyA, shAnti, shAntyatItA)
7.    mUrti panchaka (brahmA, viShNu, rudra, Ishvara, sadAshiva)
8.    sAdAkhya panchaka (panchashivasAdAkhya mUrta, sAdAkhya mUrta, sAdAkhya kartR^I, sAdAkhya karma) etc.

Apart from panchamUrtayaH, eight forms of the Lord are also described in the shastras:

tasya shambhoH pareshasya mUrtyaShTakamayaM jagat |
tasmin vyApya sthitaM vishvaM sUtre maNigaNA iva ||
sharvo bhavastathA rudro ugro bhImo pashoH patiH |
IshAnashcha mahAdevo mUrtayashchAShTa vishrutAH ||

sharva: kShiti mUrti
bhava: jala mUrti
rudra: vahni mUrti
ugra: vAyu mUrti
bhIma: AkAsha mUrti
pashupati: yajamAna mUrti
IshAna: sUrya mUrti
mahAdeva: Chandra mUrti

The eight forms of mahAdeva are alternately described in shaivAgamas thus:

1.    shiva
2.    maheshvara
3.    rudra
4.    viShNu
5.    pitAmaha
6.    saMsAravaidya
7.    sarvaj~na
8.    paramAtmA

The shatarudra samhitA of shiva purANa describes the ekAdasha mUrtis of mahAdeva thus:

ajaikapAdahirbudhnyaH virUpAkShaH sureshvaraH |
jayanto bahurUpashcha tryambako.apyaparAjitaH |
vaivasvatashcha sAvitro haro rudrA ime smR^itAH ||

These eleven rudra mUrtis are worshipped along with mahArudra and rudrANi in the AvaraNa of mahApAshupateshvara in sR^iShTi krama. These are replaced by the corresponding yoginIs in the samhAra krama. The other chief parivAra devatas of mahApAshupata mUrti are the sapta tANDava mUrtis:

1.    Ananda tANDava mUrti
2.    sandhyA tANDava mUrti
3.    umA tANDava mUrti
4.    gaurI tANDava mUrti
5.    kAlikA tANDava mUrti
6.    tripura tANDava mUrti
7.    saMhAra tANDava mUrti

Again, when the krama changes from samhAra, the deities also change:

1.    uddaNDa tANDava mUrti
2.    Urdhva tANDava mUrti
3.    savya tANDava mUrti
4.    mahA tANDava mUrti
5.    brahmANDa tANDava mUrti
6.    visphoTa tANDava mUrti
7.    mahApraLaya tANDava mUrti
8.    mahogra tANDava mUrti
9.    paribhramaNa tANDava mUrti

The description of these mUrtis can be seen in chidambara tantra.

The dhyAna shlokas for the five faces of mahAdeva are as below:

prAleyAchalamindukundadhavaLaM gokshIraphenaprabhaM
bhasmAbhya~Ngamana~NgadehadahanajvAlAvalIlochanam |
viShNubrahmamarudgaNArchitapadaM R^igvedanAdodayaM
vande.ahaM sakalaM kala~NkarahitaM sthANormukhaM pashcimam ||

gauraM ku~Nkumapa~NkitaM sutilakaM vyApANDugaNDasthalaM
bhrUvikShepakaTAkShavIkShaNalasat saMsaktakarNotpalam |
snigdhaM bimbaphalAdharaM prahasitaM nIlAlakAla~NkR^itaM
vande yAjuShavedaghoShajanakaM vaktraM harasyottaram ||

saMvartAgnitaTitpradIptakanakapraspardhitejoruNaM [or bAlArkAgni]
gambhIradhvanisAmavedajanakaM tAmrAdharaM sundaram |
ardhendudyutilolapi~NgLajaTAbhAraprabaddhoragaM [prabaddhodakaM]
vande siddhasurAsurendranamitaM pUrvaM mukhaM shUlinaH ||

kAlAbhrabhramarA~njanadyutinibhaM vyAvR^ittapi~NgekShaNaM
karNodbhAsitabhogimastakamaNiprodbhinnadaMShTA~Nkuram |
sarpaprotakapAlashuktishakalavyAkIrNamAshekharaM
vande dakShiNamIshvarasya vadanaM chAtharvanAdodayam ||

vyaktaavyaktanirUpitaM cha paramaM ShaTtriMshatatvAdhikaM [shuddhAMshasattvAdhikaM]
tasmAduttaratatvamakSharamiti dhyeyaM sadA yogibhiH | [tasmAduttamatattvamakSharamidaM]
OMkArAdisamastamantrajanakaM sUkshmAtisUkshmaM paraM
vande pa~nchamamIshvarasya vadanaM khavyApi tejomayam ||

tava tattvaM na jAnAmi kIdR^isho.asi maheshvara |
yAdR^isho.asi mahAdeva tAdR^ishAya namo namaH ||