om namah shivaya  

The nature of bondage and liberation and the Glorification of the phallic emblem of Siva

A Jiva is said to be bondage if the noose of eight fold primary essences, Prakriti etc, ties him up. When freed from them, he is called liberated. Perfect control and subjugation of Prakriti and its offshoots is Salvation. A Jiva in bondage when freed from it is called a liberated soul. The set of eight that binds is Prakriti, Buddhi (cosmic intellect), Ahamkara (cosmic ego) of the nature of attributes, and the five Tanmatras (cosmic principles of Ether etc.) The body is evolved out of these eight. The body carries on activities. The activities generate the body. Thus birth and activities continue in a series.

The body is of three types: the gross, the subtle and the casual. The gross body is responsible for all activities; the subtle body yields the enjoyment of pleasures through the senses. The casual body is for the sake of experiencing the good and the bad results of the activities of the Jiva.

The Jiva experiences happiness as a result of virtue and misery as a result of sin. The Jiva bound by the rope of activities revolves round and round for ever like a wheel by means of the three types of body and their activities.

The creator of the wheel must be worshipped for the cessation of the revolution of the wheel. The Prakriti etc. constitute the great wheel and Siva is beyond the Prakriti. The creator of the wheel is Lord Siva. He is beyond the Prakriti. Just as a boy drinks or spits out water as he pleases so also Siva keeps Prakriti etc. just as he pleases. He is called Siva because he has brought it under his control (Vasikrta). Siva alone is omniscient, perfect and free from desire.

The mental prowess of Mahesvara which Vedas alone can comprehend consists of omniscience, satiety, beginning less understanding, independence, never failing and infinite power. Hence Prakriti etc. come under control due to Sivas grace. One shall worship Siva alone for the acquisition of Sivas grace. The result of self- less worship of a perfect being is an activity done with dedication to Siva causes pleasure to a being. Keeping Siva in view, the devotee has to worship the phallic or the embodied image of Siva. He has to worship his devotee by means of the body, mind, speech and money spent.

Siva, the great lord, who is beyond Prakriti is delighted at the worship and specially blesses the worshipper. The Karma etc. come under control gradually due to Sivas grace. Beginning with Karma and ending with Prakriti when everything comes under control, the Jiva is called liberated and he shines as a self-realised person.

By the grace of Siva, when his body that is resultant from activities (Karmadeha) comes under control, the devotee attains residence in Sivaloka. This is called Saloka form of liberation. When the subtle elements come under control, the devotee attains nearness to Siva. Then he attains similarity with Siva by means of weapons and activities. This is called Sarupya. When the devotee acquires the great favour, the cosmic intellect too comes under control.

The mental prowess of Siva becomes his without any difficulty. On acquiring the omniscience and prosperity of Siva, the devotee becomes resplendent in his soul; this is called Sayujya, complete identity by persons well versed in the Vedas and Agamas, sacred texts. It is in this order that one gets salvation by the worship of the phallic image of Siva.

Hence the devotee shall worship Siva by performing sacred rites etc. for the acquisition of Sivas favour, Sivas sacred rites, Sivas penance, and the Japas of Siva mantras always. Knowledge of Siva and meditation on Him shall be practiced more and more. The time till retirement to bed, the time till death shall be spent in contemplating over Siva. One shall adore Siva by means of the Sadyo mantras and flowers. One will attain welfare.

The rules governing worship of Siva in the phallic and other forms

The first phallic form is the Pranava that confers all desires. It is called Suksma Pranava (the subtle one) if it is Niskala. The Sthula (gross one) is Sakala and it consists of five constituent syllables. The worship of these two is called a penance. Both of them accord salvation. There are many phallic emblems of Paurusa Prakriti

These are of five types: Svayambhu, Bindu, Pratisthita, Cara and Guru Linga.

When he is gladdened by the austerities of devas and sages, Siva in the form of Nada assumes the form of a seed under the ground and suddenly piercing the ground above like a germinating sprout manifests Himself outside and makes His presence felt. Since this emblem is self-raised, it is called Svayambhu.

The Bindu and Nada forms, the stationary or mobile ones are conceptual but belong to Siva.

If the image is installed with pure mind in pure altar either by the Gods Or the sages for the realisation of the soul, it is either called Paurusa and it comes under the category of the installed phallic image of Siva. By a regular worship of this phallic image, the devotee will obtain all Paurusa Aisvaryas (human riches). If great Brahmins or rich kings install linga prepared by the artisans, it is called Pratisthita and Prakrta. That which is forceful and permanent is called Paurusa. That which is week and temporary is called Prakrta. The mountain comes under the Paurusa class and the surface of the world under the Prakrta class. Trees etc. are Paurusa and creepers etc. are Prakrta.

Rasalinga as fore most among mobile lingas belonging to Caralingas is a bestower of all wishes to the Brahmins. The auspicious Banalinga is a bestower of vast kingdoms to the Ksatruyas.

A gold linga bestows the ownership of vast wealth on the Vaisyas. A Silalinga (a linga made of rock) bestows great purity on the Sudras. A crystal linga and a Banalinga bestow all sorts of wishes on all. If a devotee does not possess a linga of his own, there is no harm in using anothers linga for the purpose of worship.

A ritualistic shall perform all the worship in a Vessel. At the conclusion of Abhiseka (ceremonial bath) the Naivedya consisting of cooked rice of the Sali variety shall be offered.

When the worship is over, the linga shall be kept in a casket and placed separately in the house. Persons who worship their own lingas shall, after the worship is over, offer as food those articles of diet to which they are accustomed. All non-ritualistic shall worship the subtle linga. In the place of floral offerings, they shall use sacred ashes for adoration and food. They shall keep the linga after worship on their head forever.

The ash is of three types, derived from ordinary fire, Vedic fire and Siva fire. The ash derived from ordinary fire shall be used for the purification of articles of mud, wood or metals and even for grains. The ashes resulting from Vedic rites in fire shall be smeared over the forehead at the end of the rites.

Bilva twigs shall be burnt repeating the Atma mantra of Aghora. This fire is called Sivagni. The ashes resulting there from are called Sivagnija. The dung of cow, preferably of Kapila cow, shall be burnt first and then the twigs of Sami, Asvattha, Palasa, Vata, Aragvadha or Bilva shall be burnt. The ash resulting there from is also Sivagnija.

The word Bhasma (Ash) means that which is honoured and adored. Siva formerly did so.

The gastric fire burns different kinds of foodstuffs and with their essence nourishes the body. Similarly the great lord Siva, the creator of the universe presided over by Him and takes the essence out of the same. After burning the universe He applies the ashes over his body. Under the pretext of annihilation He has taken the essence of the same. He assigned the essence of His own body. The essence Akasa (the Ether) constitutes His hair. The essence of the wind principle constitutes His face

The essence of the Fire principle constitutes His heart that of the principles of waters the hip and that of the principle of the Earth the knees. Thus the other limbs too. The Tripundraka (the three parallel lines of ash marks over the forehead) is the essence of Trinity: Brahma, Visnu and Rudra. Similarly Mahesvara has retained the essence of everything in the form of Tilaka (the small circular mark) on the forehead

The word Siva signifies him who controls everything and whom none can control, (Siva Vasi) just as Simha signifies the creature that attacks other animals and whom other animals cannot attack. The word Siva is another interpretation. The syllable S means Permanent Bliss. The letter I means Purusa (the primordial male energy), the syllable Va means Sakti (the primordial female energy). A harmonious compound of these syllables is Siva.

Ashes must first be smeared in the dust form and then in Tripundraka form. At the time of worship, water is added to the ashes. For mere sanctification, the ashes are used without water. The devotee, whether it is day or night, whether it is man or a woman shall use water with the ashes and wear Tripundra at the time of adoration.


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