Friday, May 25, 2012

Lord Bhairava (भैरव)

Weapon - Trishula
Consort - Bhairavi
Divine vahana - Dog (Shvan)

Bhairav means terrible or frightful in Sanskrit. Lord Bhairava is said to be the fierce manifestation of Lord Shiva associated with annihilation. He is depicted with frowning, angry eyes and sharp, tiger’s teeth and flaming hair, stark naked except for garlands of skulls and a coiled snake about his neck.  His ornaments are twisted serpents, which serves as earrings, bracelets, anklets, and sacred thread (Ajnopavita). He is sometimes shown wearing a tiger skin and a ritual apron composed of human bones. In his four hands he carries a noose, trident, drum and skull. He is often shown accompanied by a black dog.

Dogs (particularly black dogs) were often considered the most appropriate form of sacrifice to Bhairava, and he is sometimes shown as holding a severed human head, with a dog waiting at one side, in order to catch the blood from the head.

Bhairava is the embodiment of fear, and it is aid that those who meet him must confront the source of their own fears. He is also said to safeguard the devotees on all eight directions.

According to Shiv Mahapuranam, an arrogant Brahma tells Vishnu, that he being the supreme creator, everyone including Vishnu and Shiva must worship him.  This angered Shiva who in reality is the creator of all.  He manifested in the form of Bhairava and beheaded one of Brahma’s five heads. Bhairava incurred the Brahmahathi dosha and had to roam as Bhikshatana, until he had been absolved of the sin. Kala Bhairava is depicted as carrying the decapitated head of Brahma. 
It is also said that Brahma created Saraswati from his imagination (Manasaputri), to help solve the cosmic confusion which arose due to the creation of Universe. Shatarupa was born and she presented Brahma with the wealth of knowledge and wisdom.  But Brahma was infatuated with her beauty and pursued her.  He even  sprouted a fifth head to gaze at her continuously.  This unlawful lust caused an imbalance in the universe and Lord Shiva took the form of Bhairava to put an end to this. He confronted Brahma and cut off his fifth head which brought him to his senses. He then performed a yagna to purify himself, reciting mantras with his four heads for salvation.

Bhairavi, the consort of the Bhairava, is also a fierce and terrifying aspect of the Devi who is virtually indistinguishable from Kali.

Bhairava is said to have eight manifestations: 
Kaala (black & in charge of Time) Bhairava is conceptualized as the Guru of the planetary deity Saturn.
Asitanga (with black limbs) Bhairava
Samhara (destruction) Bhairava
Ruru (hound) Bhairava
Krodha (anger) Bhairava
Kapala (skull) Bhairava
Rudra (atom) Bhirava
Unmatta (raging) Bhairava. 

 Kalabhairav Ashtakam
 Deva raja sevya mana pavangri pankajam,
Vyala yagna suthra mindu shekaram krupakaram,
Naradadhi yogi vrundha vandhitham digambaram,
Kasika puradhi nadha Kalabhairavam bhaje. 1
I sing praise of Kalabhairav, Who is the ruler of the city Kashi, Who is adorned by lotus-feet which is reverred and served by Indra (Devaraj), Who has a Yagya-thread made up of snake, Who has the moon on His forehead, Who is the abode of mercy, Who has been sung by Narad and other celestial singers, and Whose clothes are the directions.||1||

Bhanu koti bhaswaram, bhavabdhi tharakam param,
Neelakanda meepsidartha dayakam trilochanam,
Kalakala mambujaksha maksha soola maksharam,
Kasika puradhi nadha Kalabhairavam bhaje. 2
I sing praise of Kalabhairav, Who is the ruler of the city Kashi, Who is resplendent like millions of sun, Who absolves the ocean of cycle of rebirth, Who is supreme, Who has a blue neck, Who bestows us with our desires, Who has three-eyes, Who is the end of Kaal, Who has lotus-like eyes, Who has immortal monodent weapon, and Who is immortal.||2||

Soola tanga pasa danda pani madhi karanam,
Syama kaya madhi devamaksharam niramayam,
Bheema vikramam prabhum vichithra thandava priyam,
Kasika puradhi nadha Kalabhairavam bhaje. 3
I sing praise of Kalabhairav, Who is the ruler of the city Kashi, Who has monodent, spade, a cord and punishment in His hands, Who is the cause behind the beginning, Who has a grey (smeared) body, Who is the first Deva, Who is imperishable, Who is free from illness and health, Who is immensely mighty, Who is the Lord, and Who loves the special Tandava dance.||3||

Bhukthi mukthi dayakam prasashtha charu vigraham,
Bhaktha vatsalam shivam* , samastha loka vigraham,
Vinikwanan manogna hema kinkini lasath kateem,
Kasika puradhi nadha Kalabhairavam bhaje. 4
I sing praise of Kalabhairav, Who is the ruler of the city Kashi, Who is the bestower of desires and salvation, Who has an enticing appearance form, Who is endears His devotees, Who is static, Who takes various manifestations and forms the world, and Who has a beautiful golden waist-thread with small melodious bells.||4||

Dharma sethu palakam, thwa dharma marga nasakam,
Karma pasa mochakam , susharma dayakam vibhum,
Swarna varna sesha pasa shobithanga mandalam,
Kasika puradhi nadha Kalabhairavam bhaje. 5
I sing praise of Kalabhairav, Who is the ruler of the city Kashi, Who is the maintainer of righteousness, Who is the destroyer of unrighteous paths, Who liberates us from the ties of Karma or deeds, Who bestows us with shyness, Who is splendid, and Whose organ-groups are decorated with a beautiful cord of golden color.||5||

Rathna padukha prabhabhirama padayugmakam,
Nithyamadwidheeyamishta daivatham niranjanam,
Mrutyu darpa nasanam karaladamshtra mokshanam,
Kasika puradhi nadha Kalabhairavam bhaje. 6

I sing praise of Kalabhairav, Who is the ruler of the city Kashi, Who has feet adorned by two sandals made of gold which is possessing a resplendent shine, Who is eternal, Who is induplicable, Who bestows our desires to us, Who is without desires, Who destroys the pride of death (as in is supreme to death), and Who liberates soul by His teeth.||6||

Attahasa binna padma janda kosa santhatheem,
Drushti pada nashta papa jala mugra sasanam,
Ashtasidhi dayakam kapala malikadaram,
Kasika puradhi nadha Kalabhairavam bhaje. 7
I sing praise of Kalabhairav, Who is the ruler of the city Kashi, Whose loud roar is enough to destroy all the manifestations created by the lotus-born Brahma, Whose (merciful) glance is enough to destroy all the sins, Who is the powerful ruler, Who gives the eight-powers¹, and Who wears a garland of skull-caps.||7||

Bhootha sanga nayakam, vishala keerthi dayakam,
Kasi vasa loka punya papa shodhakam vibum,
Neethi marga kovidham purathanam jagatpathim,
Kasika puradhi nadha Kalabhairavam bhaje. 8
I sing praise of Kalabhairav, Who is the ruler of the city Kashi, Who is the leader of the ghosts and spirits, Who showers immense glory, Who absolves people dwelling in Kashi from their sins and righteous deeds, Who is splendor, Who has explained the path of righteousness, Who is eternally old, and Who is the controller of the universe.||8||

Kalabhairavashtakam patanthi yea manoharam,
Jnana mukthi sadhanam , vichithra punya vardhanam,
Soka moha dainya lopa kopa thapa nasanam,
Thea prayanthi Kalabhairavangri saniidhim druvam. 9
Those who study these eight verses on Kalabhairav — which is enticing, which is a source of knowledge and liberation, which increases righteousness of a person, and which destroys grief, attachment, depression, greed, anger an heat — move towards the proximity of the feet of Shiv (Kalabhairav), necessarily.||9||


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