Lord Shanmukha and His Worship. Front Cover. Swami Sivananda people are saying – Write a review. We haven’t found any reviews in the usual places. Kartikeya (IAST: Kārttikēya), also known as Murugan, Skanda, Kumara, and Subrahmanya, is the Hindu god of war. He is the son of Parvati and Shiva, brother of Ganesha, and a god whose life .. This has encouraged the worship of Murugan as a child-God, very similar to the worship of the child Krishna in north India. Lord Shanmukha and His Worship – The Divine Life Read more about skanda, siva, shanmukha, subrahmanya, devas and divine.
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Search the history of over billion web pages on the Internet. Shiv anandanagar— Distt. Lord Skanda, also known as Shanmukha, is adored and worshipped with intense faith and devotion throughout South India and Sri Lanka.
And naturally it will be of great interest to all His devotees, in particular, to know more about Him, the significance of His birth and His life and career as a victorious General. Sri Swami Sivanandaji, the author of this book, graphically describes the above-mentioned subjects in his usual style,—inspiring and direct, instructive and illuminating, soul-elevating and at once impressive.
It is needless to introduce him to the readers, who is so very well-known as a versatile genius in all the spiritual subjects and as an author of many an immortal and monumental work that breathes the spirit of ancient wisdom and of direct and intuitive realisation of the Supreme. The book has been divided into two parts—Part One dealing with the main theme, and Part Two consisting of Appendices.
Part One has six sections. Section One deals with the introductory portion,—it acquaints the reader with the purpose and significance of the incarnation of Lord Shanmukha and His Worship, as also of the previous birth of the Asuras.
The subject dealt with in Section Two is the Skanda Purana. It describes, though in brief, the Divine advent and the glorious deeds of Lord Skanda—the conditions that preceded and necessitated the Birth of the Lord, His auspicious Avatara, His Bala Lilas, His commanding of the Deva army against the Asuras and His glorious victory over them, ending with His marriage with Deivayanai and Valli.
Section Three exclusively deals with the esoteric significance of the story, in its different aspects. Three messages from Sri Swami Sivanandaji, written on the occasion of Skanda Shashthi in the years46 and 47, and one message from Sri Swami Krishnananda in have been grouped together in Section Six.
Part Two consists of four Appendices, which would interest and benefit the readers a great deal. In the introductory pages have been included two articles on Lord Skanda,—one from Shanjukha Swami Chidanandaji and one from Sri Swami Krishnanandaji,—as also a hymn by Sri Swami Shanmukhanandaji, which add to the beauty and utility of the book.
We consider the book as a masterpiece production and that it ranks with the other prominent works of Sri Swami Sivanandaji, on religion, viz. Since the second Edition of the book went out of print many years back, there has been a persistent demand for shanmikha, which has necessitated the reprinting of the same.
While reprinting the book, we have taken the opportunity to revise it thoroughly.
Lord Shanmukha and His Worship by Swami Sivananda Saraswati | LibraryThing
We hope that this work too will find a place in every public library and individual household. This great Avatars of Karttikeya is of deep significance and of very special importance to us, who have dedicated ourselves to the spiritual ideal, who have, by the Grace of God, begun to feel that the real purpose of life is not to be attained by enjoyment of the perishable objects of this physical world, but by striving to achieve the realisation of the spiritual ideal, by the attainment of the Eternal, the Imperishable; for, the manifestation of the Lord as Skanda has been in the nature of a shanmjkha demonstration of the laws that operate upon lrd inward path of ascent unto divinity.
Saints and sages are, as it were, a living commentary upon the great scriptures; even so the great Avataras, the Divine personalities of our Puranas, their life and Lilas form a demonstration of the laws that operate upon the spiritual realm, of truths pertaining to the inner life of Yoga, inner Sadhana and Sakshatkara.
Different aspects of this inner life of Yoga and Sadhana are brought out and demonstrated by different manifestations of the Supreme Deity and their various Lilas. If their right significance is understood, it will be of immense practical help and guidance to the Jiva which is trying to attain the Supreme and to realise the Paramatman. In the Skanda Avatara is brought out the fact of the eternal struggle between Avidya and Jnana, between the lower Asuric and the higher divine forces, that operate both upon the cosmic scale as shanmukga as within the individual Prakriti; and the resolution of this eternal struggle and its consummation in supreme triumph to the divine forces is brought out in the Skanda Lilas.
Thus He is the Jnana Jyoti. A very significant fact is there that ultimately He was taken out of six lotuses by Goddess Parvati from the Saravanappoigai, the lake where reeds were growing.
We know that the supreme spiritual experience or the Aparoksha Anubhuti is attained, in Yogic parlance, through Shat-Chakra-Bheda or by piercing the six plexus. It is the emerging out of the six lower lotuses that finds the Jiva ultimately in a state of perfect Purna Yoga or Wisdom in the Sahasrara Chakra. Thus, in Skanda we have the ultimate product of an emergence out of the six lotuses or Shat-Chakras and this we know to be Supreme Wisdom.
Therefore, Lord Skanda is a mass of ultimate transcendental Supreme Knowledge that has to destroy nescience, Ajnana or darkness, represented upon the plane of manifest cosmos in the form of the Asuric hosts. The Prerequisite to the Descent of Grace The very first factor of significance which seekers have to realise is that the Grace of the Lord, which was instrumental in leading one party to victory, came out to support the Devas and it was the fitness of the party that dictated the descent of the Grace.
Herein the first truth is revealed that if the aspirant in his struggle should become fit to approach the giver of Grace for the bestowal of Grace, he must first make himself of Daivi-Prakriti and possess Daivi-Sampat. The accessibility to this fountain-head of Grace from which we may draw support is conditional upon the nature of the one who approaches it. We have to become Adhikaris, if we may approach the one who is to bestow grace upon us and who is to provide us with the necessary leadership and the strength to overcome the evil forces with which we are trying to battle.
This is given out by all Acharyas, all great seers and Mahapurushas in the form of the Sadhana-Chatushtaya, the Yama-Niyama or the Sadachara, the acquisition of Daivi-Sampat. This is an indispensable prerequisite for every seeker who wishes to get the better of the lower self and set foot on the path of Yoga.
Guru is Skanda-Sakti Upon this human plane, the Guru or the spiritual preceptor or guide, who is to help us and to lead us to victory in our battle with Avidya or our lower nature, is the counterpart of Lord Skanda.
He is the personification of Skanda-Sakti. Skanda is the personification of the total Sadhana-Sakti or Yoga-Sakti in this world. It is through Yoga-Sakti that one can attain perfect victory over all the forces of darkness that comprise Ajnana or ignorance and attain the fullness of wisdom.
The law which has been demonstrated by the Skanda Avatara is, in actual life, brought out by the representation of Skanda in the form of the Guru, by the representation of the Devas or the celestial party in the form of the aspirant who has purified himself and attained the Sadhana-Chatushtaya and thus has become an Adhikari in order to approach the Guru and try to get his Grace.
We have to consider the next stage in the unfoldment of Skanda Lila. In this battle we desire to have victory.
Lord Shanmukha and His Worship
Therefore, you should help us. In thus doing, they gave out two laws. One is that we have first to recognise the presence of the lower self and that we are distinct from it; and that the lower self is an obstacle within us, an undesirable VI element within our nature. And we must align ourselves not with that force but with the divine forces. The second is the truth that mere recognition of this or acceptance of the fact that the lower self is undesirable and must be overcome is not enough; we must put this recognition into dynamic action.
We must manfully set about trying to do this process of breaking down all shanmuhka elements of the evil, lower nature with all our heart and all worsyip might. God helps those who help themselves, is a well-known old adage. This is very true upon the spiritual path. Unless we demonstrate our sincerity and completely rid ourselves of the impurity, unspiritual and undivine, by means of practical effort and actual striving, we have not yet attained the fitness to ask for grace.
We must exert; then we become deserving. Then we can desire to obtain the help of the higher powers. This is a law which the majority of seekers are prone to disregard because recognition and acceptance of this law is very uncomfortable and inconvenient. For, it implies that we have to strive and to make effort, and the lower nature will not easily sanction this, inasmuch as in the beginning of the spiritual practice, to a great extent, the personality of the seeker is under the habitual dominance andd the lower nature, its old tendencies, old habits, inclinations, etc.
There may be a desire or even sincerity; but it is all theoretical and the Tamoguna which is the prominent feature of the lower nature will not easily allow the aspirant to put forth right exertion. To bring out this law in a telling manner, we are told that the Devas again and again gave battle to the ,ord, not once but time and again; and it was after repeatedly being worsted in battle that they found that, in spite of their earnest and sincere practical efforts to overcome the evil forces, they were yet not crowned worshp victory.
Then it is that the celestial hosts turned to the Bis Lord and prayed for His Grace. And, it is only when these conditions are fulfilled that the Lord will hear this prayer and bestow His Grace.
The Initiation Syanmukha Sadhana-Sakti or the awakening impulse to the Jiva slumbering in the powerful sleep of nescience or ignorance or Ajnana is imparted by means of the Diksha initiation given by the Guru.
By Diksha we do not necessarily mean the imparting of a particular Mantra secretly into the ear of the disciple or any actual Sakti-Sanchara Kriya or any outward act worshi all. It may merely be the Sat-Sankalpa of the Guru. It may be by a passing glance, a simple gaze, a touch or a single word, or a thought. The mysterious way in which this Sadhana-Sakti is made to woeship into, indwell and work in the nature of the disciple, in the inwardness of the personality of the seeker, only the Guru knows and only the realised ones perceive.
The Meaning of Prayer The entire process of the spiritual ascent is from start to finish one of earnest practice. There is no other road except Abhyasa. One may have the best feeling, the best heart, the most sublime Bhava, but unless and until every part of this is put into actual practice, there is no hope.
Abhyasa is the keynote of the life of Sadhana. Nis it, Sadhana will not go towards its fruition of Anubhuti or experience. Thus we have the celestials standing at shanmukhaa door of ,ord. They hymn Him, glorify Him and pray unto Him; and this is our next cue. It is the law of prayer that is now given to us as our sole guide upon the path. Prayer means, first and foremost, a perfect belief in a higher power.
It means the desire and willingness shamukha submit our Abhimana or ego at the feet of a higher power. Thus, the acquisition of Shraddha interest is now pointed out to us. The submission of our personal ego or Abhimana is next pointed out to us. Herein its natural corollary, the cultivation of vii the supreme virtue of absolute humility, also is indicated. The fourth thing that prayer implies, as it has been given to us specifically in the unfoldment of lofd Skanda Lila, is that the ultimate purpose of this prayer was to be given a leader, whom the Devas were to follow.
The seeker has to mark this. The prayer was not for power or ability to oneself. If we carefully reflect over this, we will find how this beautifully brings forth the underlying law of spiritual unfoldment with its ultimate connotation of the total eradication of the ego.
The entire anatomy of the spiritual life can be summed up in this one phrase: The Devas prayed not that they may get power to win the Asuras. There is shnamukha attitude of willing self-effacement, self-abnegation, a standing aside so that the fullest manifestation of the divine power may stand in front and take over the stand from them.
It indicates that the Sadhaka or the seeker is but a mere instrument; and it is the Lord Himself, the indweller in the individual, who takes over the Sadhana and actually does it. When the seeker begins to feel that even this Sadhana is not done by him, but is the Divine Sakti that works within him and enables the Sjanmukha to be worked out and which achieves the ultimate fulfilment of the Divine Will, then he starts on the real upward march and rapid ascent towards triumphant divinity.
Thus the second aspect of prayer unfolds itself before us. We completely allow the Divine to take charge of our personality. The seeker recedes into the background and there is a total resignation to the will of the Divine. The seeker becomes a transformed being.
The Final Victory Skanda Shashthi is the joyous occasion for us to worship the Lord in His triumphant, all-conquering aspect, when He annihilates the last remnants of the Ajnana of the Jiva and signals the final, conclusive victory of the Divine over the undivine, of Light over darkness, of the ultimate Reality by experiencing which we transcend all that is evanescent, ephemeral, transitory and unreal.
We find that He reveals to us, in His Lila, the truth embodied in the Upanishadic utterance: Rite Jnananna Muktih —Without Jnana, without the Transcendental Knowledge, there is no freedom, no ultimate salvation. This great declaration tells us nad all doubt how it is the ultimate, complete eradication of the last traces of Ajnana or Maya that alone can bestow upon the Jiva the highest Kaivalya Moksha. This is brought out to us in a thrilling manner in the final episode of the Divine Skanda Lila wherein the Lord engages in battle and vanquishes the three great Asuras—Taraka, Simhamukha and Surapadma, representing Karma, Kama and Avidya, respectively.
After the fall of his brothers Taraka and Simhamukha, Surapadma himself comes to the battlefield. He tries all his devices and finds that none of these could stand the onslaught of the divine Vel Spear of Worshup Skanda.
Then he takes different forms and fights with the Lord, sometimes visible and sometimes invisible.