Bob Richmond Photography

Shiva Lingams

Above photograph by Bob Richmond

tallest_statue_of_lord_shiva

I am beyond thought and beyond form
I am in all things, everywhere, in all senses
I am impartial to all, neither attached nor detached
The embodiment of blissful consciousness,
I am Shiva! I am Shiva! I am Shiva!

Sri Adishankaracharya (700 – 750 AD)

What is a Shiva Lingam?

A Shiva Lingam is in essence a neat magickal tool in the form of an oval-shaped stone. These precious stones come in earth hues of deep red, tan and brown and make a perfect instrument for earth magick practitioners and healers. Lingums, as they are also called are used to establish and promote pranic energy. Pranic energy is the “life force” within all objects and very similar to the Chinese concept of Chi. A rare object found in only one holy site in Western India called the Narmada River. Villagers assemble through during holy times or pujas to collect these stones and polish them to be sold throughout the world.

The term ‘Lingum’ comes from the sanskrit word for ‘symbol’ and these stones in their various shapes and sizes are used to represent the Lord Shiva. Associated with the crown chakra in Eastern Medicine, the Lingam is used as a main focus item when worshipping the Lord who dwells in the cremation grounds. Attuning yourself to Lord Shiva can help some one focus on their own mortality, living each day to it’s fullest potential and also accepting the inevitability of death. Lord Shiva is also the God of Transformation as recognized in Hindu culture. He can help those in need of making changes in their lives that seem impossible. Remember, if you are invoking this kind of Magick, there is no ‘free ride’ so to speak. If you are fearful of making the changes necessary to bring changes, call upon Lord Shiva to guide you in making the right decisions. No deity, entity or spirit will ever do all the work for you and I’d be a bit suspicious if it did.

An interesting addition to any Magickal Curio or Ritual Tools

These stones cast off an intense vibrational energy that lends to the already significant magickal resources in a properly kept Magickal Curio. Just holding them within your hands assists with meditation and powerful spell work. It’s a habit of mine to use stones such as these as a grounding tool after raising formidable caches of energy for rituals. It is also noted that these stones have a protective quality that will guard over the Curio and the inhabitants of those within. Spirits tend to like magickal force fields when they act as Co-Magicians just as we cast circles around ourselves for protection.

Shiva Lingams are quite rare…

Finding a stone can be seemingly simple but it’s important to understand that not every stone will bind it’s unique energies to your spellwork. If you’re using your stone for the act of worshipping, then almost any Lingum will do to establish a connection. Worshipping and spell work are two entirely different practices and should be handled with care and consideration of the beings and forces you are interacting with in the act. Always have a clear image of your intent and focus when working with any magickal item. It not only assists you in practicing effective magick but it also keeps you safe from working an incompatible style of magick.

Be sure to choose one that suits your attractions. A stone that is bright and unique in hue and also displays an interesting pattern that captivates your senses. If you are purchasing online, you will not have the opportunity to touch the stone and feel it’s essence. Generally all Lingams possess a fair amount of vibrational energy but the real bond comes when you are physically able to choose your own stone for yourself. Feeling that the partnership is ‘right’ when you quiet your mind and feel the stone will be your sign that the rock has accepted your energies to combine with and mingle.

Paying Tribute to Lord Shiva

lord-shiva-1800672_1920

Definition of mantra

  1. :  a mystical formula of invocation (see invocation 2) or incantation (as in Hinduism) as defined by Merriam-Webster dictionary.

If you are interested paying Tribute to the Lord who Dwells in the Cremation Grounds, it’s important to understand the power of the Mantra. Mantras are sort of like a chant or invocation. They are used to manifest prayer, focus the mind on an intent or work powerful Magick. It’s a very intense way of developing a connection with a deity. I urge you to do some research on Lord Shiva first. Using a Mantra is not something to be taken lightly or done without thought behind the act. I’ll provide some links below to some resources about him. Also research the Mantras in question, you may find one that suits you better for your goals.

I recommend washing your Lingam with sacred consecration water and anointing it in essential Jasmine oil. Envision all negativity that was cast upon the stone during handling being released as the mixture of salt, water and sacred herbs passes over it. Envision around your stone an aura of bright white light. Then concentrate on the Seven Chakras as you anoint your stone and think of your intent. This is a very special way of communicating with your piece.

Mantras will be a great way to also charge your Shiva Lingum stones. Here are some offerings that are acceptable to use on your Lingam when consorting and contacting Lord Shiva.

1. Curd – Bean curds or TOFU are easily found in grocery stores. Remember that this must be replenished soon as the shrine you are creating should be kept clean and free of dirt.

2. Milk/water – Raw milk is preferred but not required. It could be cow, goat or even breast milk if you are able to obtain some.  Water should be sourced from an artisan well or taken from the rain or snow found in nature.

3. Honey – Raw honey is best. Processed ‘honey sauce’ is quite ineffective and I would even venture to say insulting.

4. Tender Coconut water – Easy to find in the ‘ethnic’ section of most grocery superstores.

5. Vibhuti (holy ash) – Now this can be tricky. You could consecrate wood/herbal/incense ash in Shiva’s name before hand or if you are daring enough, you could use the ashes of a beloved Ancestor if you had an urn of their remains. I would use strong caution on this particular act as the result could be overwhelming.

6. Panchamruta (Curd based delicacy consisting of Panch(5) items: Milk, Sugar, Ghee (clarified butter), Honey, curd)

7. Bananas – Source them organically if you can.

8. Sandalwood Paste – Sandalwood resin can be found online and made into a paste.

9. Ghee (Clarified butter) –  Easy to find a recipe for online and not at all challenging to make. It can also be purchased in some speciality shops. Using ghee in cooking is a great deal healthier than some of the additives used in modern food. You should try to obtain some organic butter and preferably try to source it locally if you live in a rural area that has access to such fineries.

10. Haldi – Also known as turmeric. Acquire in the spice section of most stores. I prefer the Frontier brand as it is organic, fresh and potent in spell work.

11. Fragrant oils – Prem Shiva is the very best you can find. You can purchase it online. It is said that the very best quality can be found made directly from the city of Shiva.

12. Bael leaves – You can find these online.

  • BAEL leaves(vital importance): While selecting BAEL leaves make sure the Chakra and the Bajra should not be there. The Chakra is a white mark made by the insects on the BAEL leaves, while the Bajra is the thick portion towards the stalk. The BAEL leaves used in pooja should be of 3 leaflets even if one of the leaves gets detached of three leaves then it is of no use.

Flowers – Flowers associated with Shiva are:

  • Bow string Hemp Flowers
  • Datura Flowers
  • Lotus(Blue, Pink/White )

Flowers are very auspicious and pleasing to Lord Shiva during the Puja. You may need to poke around online for dried specimens or visit a local florist for the required materials. I would also like to add that I have had success with Jasmine Flowers when contacting Hindu deities. Another auspicious flower to consider is the Lily. While not traditionally Hindu, the Lily in modern western culture is used to promote the feeling of rest for the dead. I have no issues finding Lilies, especially around Easter/Ostara time and feel that incorporating this into the ritual practice will be pleasing to the God. Magick is very much what we feel strongly in our minds and hearts. If something has no meaning, it will carry no magickal significance.

If you practice Hoodoo or another form of folk magick, then I would look into using a ‘Rose of Jericho’ or Anastatica hierochuntica in your magickal dealings with Shiva. These plants are usually sold as a dried, ugly, lifeless mass of herb. When water is applied to the plant, it springs to life in a matter of hours. This represents the transformation that you are invoking to work with Lord Shiva. You could also anoint your stone in ‘Rose of Jericho Oil‘ as a way to intensify your intent.

Make a small tabernacle for the purpose of charging and consecrating your stones. It can be temporary or permanent, elaborate or very simple. Be sure if is free from the disturbing influence of others who may ramshackle your sacred space. It is best if you have a bowl of Lodestones to charge your Lingums as well.

Upon affixing the flowers around the Lingam, it is important to meditate on these concepts before invoking the Mantra you wish to use. Lord Shiva’s concepts are:

  • Ahimsa  – Similar to the western concept of peace but a bit more in depth. I recommend doing some of your own research.
  • Control over all senses  – Mind, body, spirit and the power they hold in the physical and astral worlds.
  • Kindness – Kindness not only to others but also to the self. Reflection and remembrance of the Gods and unseen forces that shape our world.
  • Forgiveness – Forgiveness to others, forgiveness of the self.
  • Peace – Surrender the desires of the physical world to find contentment within.
  • Penance – Respect to the Gods, the unseen forces of the world.
  • Meditation – Time spent in reflection and dedication to the self and worship of Lord Shiva.
  • Truth – There is only one truth. Finding it requires shedding of ego and perceptions of the self. Seeing things for how they really are is perhaps the hardest discipline to learn. Embracing what is reality as opposed to what we think it to be can be painful and also lifts many weights off your shoulders.

Be sure to visit this site for more detailed information about the eight auspicious flowers. It was used as a base source for the above material.

On to the Mantra!

Find a quiet time free from the distractions of the physical world to perform the mantra. Concentrating on the image and auspicious attributes of Shiva, hold your Shiva Lingam and chant:

त्रयम्बकं यजामहे सुगन्धिं पुष्टिवर्धनम् ।
उर्वारुकमिव बन्धनान् म्रुत्योर्मुक्षिय मामृतात् ॥
Om Trayambakam Yajamahe, Sugandhim Pushti Vardhanam,
Urvarukmiv Bandhanat, Mrityurmokshaya Mamratat.
the meaning is as follows,
It is a combination of three Hindi language words i.e. ‘Maha’, which means great, ‘Mrityun’ means death and ‘Jaya’ means victory, which turns into conquer or victory over death. Source.
origins of the Mantra to provide context,
The Mahamrityumjaya Mantra or Mahamrityunjaya Mantra (Sanskrit: महामृत्युंजय मंत्र or महामृत्युञ्जय मन्त्र, mahāmṛtyuṃjaya mantra or mahāmṛtyuñjaya mantra, lit. “Great Death-conquering Mantra“), also known as the Tryambakam Mantra, is a verse of the Rigveda (RV 7.59.12). Source.
I chose the Mahamrityunjaya because it is said to be the mantra that ‘belongs’ to Lord Shiva. It is supposed that this is the most powerful mantra one can use to contact the Lord of Transformation and gain His attentions. Envision your greatest challenges and see them being knocked down and you riding into your envisioned future in victory. Nothing is unattainable with discipline, focus and faith.
As taken from the above linked Wikipedia site, this gives you a better understanding of the words and concepts being addressed. Pronunciation of sanskrit words can easily be found online. It takes time and practice but the most important thing is to concentrate on your intent. The Gods will know you are speaking to them and appreciate the attempt. I provided the entirety of the article from the Source to help you gain understanding.

Literal Meaning of the Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra

Word-by-word meaning of the Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra:-

  • aum = is a sacred/mystical syllable in Sanatan Dharma or Hindu religions, i.e. Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism & Sikhism.
  • त्र्यम्बकं tryambakam = the three-eyed one (accusative case),
त्रि + अम्बकम् = tri + ambakam = three + eye
  • यजामहे yajāmahe = We worship, adore, honour, revere,
  • सुगन्धिम् sugandhim = sweet fragrance, fragrant (accusative case),
  • पुष्टि puṣṭi = A well-nourished condition, thriving, prosperous, fullness of life,
  • वर्धनम् vardhanam = One who nourishes, strengthens, causes to increase (in health, wealth, well-being); who gladdens, exhilarates, and restores health; a good gardener,
पुष्टि-वर्धनम् = puṣṭi+vardhanam = पुष्टि: वर्धते अनेन तत् = puṣṭiḥ vardhate anena tat (samas)= The one who nourishes someone else and gives his life fullness.
  • उर्वारुकमिव urvārukam-iva = like the cucumber or melon (in the accusative case); or like a big peach.
Note: Some people have decomposed the compound urvārukam in this way: ‘urva’ means “vishal” or big and powerful or deadly; ‘arukam’ means ‘disease’. But urva (उर्वा) does not mean ‘vishal’ in Sanskrit; Another possibility would be ūrva (root ऊर्व्), meaning ‘to kill, hurt’, which could bend the translation to ‘please eradicate all disease’ as ūrva is in the imperative mood. Another way: uru: big, large; ārukam (in the accusative case): peach; iva: like.
  • बन्धनान् bandhanān = “from captivity” {i.e. from the stem of the cucumber} (of the gourd); (the ending is actually long a, then -t, which changes to n/anusvara because of sandhi)
Note: bandhanān means bound down. Thus, read with urvārukam iva, it means ‘I am bound down just like a cucumber (to a vine)’. If you read it with mṛtyormukṣīya it means ‘liberate from the bounds of death’
  • मृत्योर्मुक्षीय mṛtyormukṣīya = Free, liberate From death
मृत्यु: + मुक्षीय = mṛtyoḥ + mukṣīya= from death + free (Vedic usage)
  • माऽमृतात् mā’mṛtāt can be translated in a number of different ways:
1) मा + अमृतात् = mā + amṛtāt = not + immortality, nectar
Translation would be: (Free me from death but) not from immortality.
2) मा (माम) + अमृतात् = mā (short form of mām) + amṛtāt = myself + immortality
Translation would be: Give me some life rejuvenating nectar
3) मा (माम) + अमृतात् = mā (short form of mām) + amṛtāt = myself + sure, definitely
Translation would be: Free me from certain death.

Source of Puja offerings were acquired and expanded upon through Wikipedia.

Links to additional resources for Shiva Lingums and Lord Shiva:

Published by

Kim Frank of Deeply Rooted

I've been dedicated to Paganism and Earth Magick for 18+ years since Mabon 1999. I am a writer, an artist and a student of nature.

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