शिवः शक्त्या युक्तो यदि भवति शक्तः प्रभवितुं
न चेदेवं देवो न खलु कुशलः स्पन्दितुमपि।
अतस्त्वाम् आराध्यां हरि-हर-विरिन्चादिभि रपि
प्रणन्तुं स्तोतुं वा कथ-मक्र्त पुण्यः प्रभवति॥ 1 ॥
Shivah shakthya yukto yadi bhavati shaktah prabhavitum
Na chedevam devo na khalu kusalah spanditumapi;
Atas tvam aradhyam Hari-Hara-Virinchadibhir api
Pranantum stotum vaa katham akrta-punyah prabhavati
Let’s look into the Padavibhaga. Word to word meaning of Verse 1:
Śivaḥ – tāntric Śiva i.e. God Himself; yadi – if; yuktaḥ – joined with;
Śaktyā – Śakti; bhavati – becomes;
śaktaḥ – capable of;
prabhavituṁ – manifesting; (but)
ced – if;
na – He is not;
evam – thus (i.e. if He is not united with Śakti);
devaḥ – Śiva;
na khalu api – is certainly not even;
kuśalaḥ – able;
spanditum – to vibrate;
Atas – For this reason;
katham – how;
akṛtapuṇyaḥ – is the one who has not accomplished meritorious acts;
prabhavati – able to;
praṇantuṁ – bow;
vā – or;
stotuṁ – praise;
tvām – You;
ārādhyām – who are to be worshiped;
api – even; by
hara – purānic Śiva;
viriñca – Brahmā; api – etc
When we chant Soundarya Lahari we all are in imagination that our recitation is perfect. It gives the different meaning of each mantra, that is the beauty of Shankara Bhagavatpadha. There are about 34 known commentaries on Soundarya Lahari. Among them, Pandith Lakshmi Dhara’s commentary seems to be very close to what Shankara Bhaghavad Padha wanted to convey. and endorsed by Kanchi Paramachary. He also added some to that. There are not that many commentaries on Trishati, Mantra matruka Pushpamala stava, Nirvana Shatakam.
Paramaacharya said, what conclusion we are making is not final. When Kanchi paramacharya himself says this with our knowledge we conclude as an elusive conclusion. Kanchi paramacharya has also done something great which is the connection between Soundarya Lahari’s mantra with reference to Lalitha Sahasranama which is one of the great works of Kanchi Paramacharya. Accordingly, the first mantra refers to :
श्री माता, श्री महाराज्ञी, श्रीमत्-सिंहासनेश्वरी ।
चिदग्नि कुण्डसम्भूता, देवकार्यसमुद्यता ॥ 1 ॥
He connects this to these namas, Parama shiva. ” O Devi” ! with your vibration and assumes cyclical process in the universe. What is the continuous cyclical process? It is the Shrishti, Sthithi, Samhara. The never-ending cyclical process is due to your vibration. Paramashiva is the sthanu swaroopa. Sthanu swaroopa is devoid of momentary activity which is firm, stationary. Here we can refer to Shiva Sahasranama.
Om Sthirayai NamaH
Om Sthanave NamaH
Shiva being sthira and Achala, one has to wish to attain that sthira, sthanu state which is universal consciousness, pure and just auspiciousness and bliss also. To attain something like sthira and sthanu one should become sthira and Sthanu. The sthira and Sthanu can be explained with an example of nandi ( bull). When the bull is sitting on the road or anywhere, it is very still and has a single-minded focus which is Ekagra Chitha Such a sthanu is unshakable. Such a Sthanu is complimented by Devi. When he( Shiva) is complimented, he is energized he manifests himself with your Shakthi and takes three forms Bramha, Hari and Hara.
Hence without being in union with you O Devi! Can shiva even stir? When you kindle the vibration Paramatma becomes aware of itself. Once the vibration from Shakthi starts there will be vibration after vibration which gives the prana life energy. For this Sruthi vakyas are authorities. Katopanishad talks about this. The cosmos duality is caused by non-dualistic Bramhan. All the Universe, the whole Branhanda is caused by a life force that is nothing but Prana. Without Prana and its vibration, there is no universe.
What is the Kampana or Vibration? Prana is not merely a breath but is Bramhan itself So this mantra starts from the principles of Shakthi Vedanta or Shakthi philosophy. Devi is far superior to Trimurthy’s. Form Spandana of the unmanifest has manifested into three forms which Shrishti, Sthithi, Kriya which have attributed into Bramha, Vishnu, and Maheshwara. Without any of these attributes, it is his non-dualistic state.
The stir makes the Trimurthy’s perform their cosmic functions. Only when Mahashakthi activates the sthanu swaroopa of the para brahman, the universe is active. So Shankara Tells Oh Devi! you have the power to accomplish and activate Shiva, here Shankara is referring to Devi as cosmic energy. It is your power that has inspired my speech to talk to you. It is your power that is making me to listen to your praise. Oh Devi ! I prostrate before you and extol you with Trikarana Shuddhi. With such surrender with manovak kaya karmana is possible only with our bhakti and gyana if the previous several lives, our thoughts. Earlier thoughts of the previous lives have taken this form. Unless these thoughts do not have bhakti and gyana it is not possible to surrender here, Shiva is auspicious yet he would not be able to stir even for a send without Shakthi ” Shaktaika Yuktho” divine pair. Knowingly and unknowingly we repeat with below verse by addressing Shiva and Shakthi as Matru and Pitru.
मातृ देवो भव।
पितृ देवो भव।
Maathru Devo Bhava
Pithru Devo Bhava
Thus Shakthi is joined to Shiva yet Shiva is capable of performing all his functions of cosmos only with the union of Shakthi. Spandhithumapi na Khalu. Panditha Lakshmidhara before starting his bhasya , salutations to Shakara he writes:
Japakusuma Bhaskarau Madhaghurnitha Kochanou.
Jagatah pitarau vande Bharavi Bhairamatmakou.
Shiva Shaktim namaskrutya Ganipatya Ganeshwaram.
Soundarya Lahari Granthe Shankarena ithi Bhuthe
This is the first prayer he offers to Shiva Shakthi. The next coming gyana yagna article will be about the rahasyartha. Bhagavathi or Mahamaya is the true reflection of Parameshwara. Paramashiva the sthanu swaroopa and Bhagavathi the Symbol of energy are together of Namayonyatmakah ( 9 groups of very basic energy created mutually. Mantra Shastra reveals this rahasyartha and represented in Srichakra. Pramashiva Shabd itself represents Navayonyatmaka. Srichakra yet Shakthi shabd is panchonyatmika. Shivayogatmika thus totally Srichakra that is responsible for Shristi, Sthithi, Samhara, Thirodana, and Anugraha. This is the rahasyartha of the first mantra and also talks about Srividya prayoga at the appropriate time when we talk about Srivdya mantras.
Additional benefits for a specific purpose: In order to remove obstacles and Restore happiness, one can use the below method.
Chanting procedure and Nivedyam (offerings to the Lord) :
If one chants this verse 1000 times every day for 12 days, and offers cooked raw rice (Havis) as prasadam, one would succeed in all ventures and all obstacles would be removed and restore happiness.
Sri Gurubhyo NamaH
Sri Matre NamaH
Note: Am Nidruva Hema penning the blog posts as an attendee to daily online “Soundarya Lahari Jnana Yajna” conducted by ‘Atmanandanatha’
Link to Article 1: Introduction to Soundarya Lahari
Link to Article 2: Synopsis of first 41 verse of Soundarya Lahari