Sri Kamakoti Mandali  
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Oghatraya and Ardhanarishwara

 

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[Query] In guru mandala pooja, one of the maanavaugha gurus is leelaamba. But I have noticed in Sringeri Saampradaaya leelaanandanadha is used. Which is the correct version? And why do shreevidyopasakas do not give prominence to ardhanareeshwara devatha?

shrImAtre namaH

This difference seems to be a typical pATha bheda issue. My Guru gave us the pATha liilAnandanAtha and not liilAmbA. But I see several upAsakas, like those belonging to guhAnanda maNDali etc. using the pATha, liilAmbA. I do not have access to any of my books currently, but this is what I can think of from the top of my head.

The pATha of a passage from Rudrayamala that I use says:

liilAnandaM namasyAmi swAtmAnandaM maheshwari |

The same, in Sri Kamakoti Shastriji's version reads:

liilAmbAM praNamasyAmi swAtmAnandaM sureshwari |

A selection from Tantraraja tantra that I remember reads:

madano bhuvano liilaH swAtmAnandastathaiva cha |

The same passage when read by Goda Shastriji was:

madano bhuvano liilA swAtmAnandastathaiva cha |

However, a clear reading can be seen in parA tantra, in the chapter describing oghatraya:

vimalAnandanAthashcha madanAnandanAthakaH |
bhuvanAnandanAthahshcha liilAnandastataH param ||

Also the Guhya Sahasranama of Sri Ucchishta Mahaganapati, which deals with various aspects of Sividya, reads:

liilAnandArchito liilAlabdhasarvAdhika etc.

Umanandanatha [in Nityotsava] and Jnanarnava also use the reading liilAnandanAtha.

ardhanArIshwara swarUpa is celebrated by one and all, but with different names. The Sruti says: strIpumsAtmikA kAmakalaiva pratipAditA. PuNyAnandanAtha, in the celebrated kAmakalAvilAsa says, shivashaktimithunapiNDaH kabaliikrtabhuvamaNDalo jayati. Shaivas call this strIpummithuna as ardhanArIshwara, vaiShNavas as lakShmInArAyaNa or ramArdhahari, gANapatyas as mahAgaNapati, lakShmIgaNapati or Sri UcchiShTa Mahaganapati; advaitins use terms such as shabala etc -

mAyAdarshe nirviSheshAvalokAjjAto bimbaH pratyayo chidvisheShA |
AsIcchaktiH puruShastrIswarUpA vidyAbaddhA chediyam jaivyameti ||

The Tantras describe guNi shaktis :

shAmbhavI shuklarUpA cha shrIvidyA raktarUpagA |
shyAmalA shyAmarUpA cha ta etA guNishaktayaH ||
[guNi shakti = guNa vishiShTa shakti – shakaparthiva karmadhAraya]

These shaktis represent ardhanArIshwara swarUpa and are reflections in the mirror of guNatraya [guNamaya prakR^itidarpaNAntarvIkShyamANa pratibimbabhUtatvAt guNishaktayaH]. When the reflection is in a mirror whose prakrti is predominantly sattva, the mithuna shakti is called shrIvidya, shyAmA or kAlikA in the case of rajo prakRti of the mirror and shAmbhavI in the case of tamo prakrti. More on this can be understood by studying shakti mImAmsA sUtras and the associated bhAShya. The important aspect to note in the case of ardhanArIshwara, in my opinion, would be by describing chicchakti as shivAbhinnArdhasharIrashAlinI rather than simply as shivArdhasharIravatI. Then, we can easily conclude nirupAdhika brahma to be swAbhinnachitprakAsham brahmeti.