Shri Rudram 1.8

Anand Hudli anandhudli at HOTMAIL.COM
Tue Nov 3 14:09:28 CST 1998

       || AUM namo bhagavate rudrAya ||

  The Rishi of this Rik is kAla, the meter jagatI, and the
  deity Rudra.

  The dhyAna shloka of the mantra is given by BhaTTa BhAskara:

  maNDalAntaragataM hiraNmayaM bhrAjamAnavapuShaM shuchismitam.h |
  chaNDadIdhitimakhaNDitadyutiM chintayenmunisahasrasevitam.h ||

  One should think of Lord Shiva, who is situated in the orb of
  the sun, who has a glittering and golden form, who has a
  pleasant smile, who is the Sun with unhindered brilliance,
  and who is attended upon by thousands of sages.

  asau yo .avasarpati nIlagrIvo vilohitaH |
  utainaM gopA adR^ishannadR^ishannudahAryaH |
  utainaM vishvA bhUtAni sa dR^iShTo mR^iDayAti naH ||
                     (shrI Rudram: anuvAka 1, Rik 8)

  asau - that
  yo - who
  avasarpati - moves downward
  nIlagrIvo - blue throated (necked)
  vilohitaH - distinctly red
  uta - also
  enam.h -  Him
  gopAH - the cowherds
  adR^ishan.h - see
  udahAryaH - the women who carry water
  adR^ishan.h - see
  uta - also
  enam.h - Him
  vishvA bhUtAni - all beings
  dR^iShTo - seen (thus)
  sa mR^iDayAti naH - may He make us happy

  Simple Sanskrit rendering

  yo rudraH sUryamaNDalasthaH asau nIlagrIvaH visheSheNa
  lohitaH astasamaye adho gachchhati iva pratibhAti | etaM gopAH
  udakahAriNyashcha pashyanti | etaM sarvANi bhUtAni pashyanti |
  evaM sarvaIH dR^iShTaH rudraH asmAn.h sukhinaH karotu,
  (iti prArthanAM kurmaH) |

  That Rudra in the sun's orb who is blue-throated and
  distinctly reddish, appears to go downward at the time of
  sunset. The cowherds see Him, the women who carry water see
  Him. Even all beings in the world see Him. May Rudra, who is
  seen thus by all, make us happy. (Thus we pray.)

  sAyaNAchAryabhAShyam.h (Commentary of sAyaNAchArya)

  yo rudro nIlagrIvaH kAlakUTadhAraNena nIlavarNA grIvA yasya-
  asau nIlagrIvaH | sa eva vilohito visheSheNa lohitavarNaH
  sannasau maNDalavartI bhUtvA .avasarpatyudayAstamayau
  saMpAdayituM pravartate - tasya cha rudrasya maNDalavarti-
  svarUpadhAraNe pryojanamuchyate - utApi cha gopA
  vedashAstrasaMskArarahitA gopAlA apyenaM maNDalavartinam-
  AdityarUpiNaM rudramadR^ishanpashyanti | udahArya udakAnAM
  hAriNyo yoShito .apyenamadR^ishanpashyanti| utApi chainaM
  maNDalavartinamAdityarUpiNaM rudraM vishvA bhUtAni
  gomahiShyAdayaH sarve .api prANinaH pashyanti | sarveShAM
  darshanArthameva hi rudrasyAdityamUrtidhAraNam.h| kailAsA-
  divartirudrasya rUpaM tu vedashAstrAbhiGYaireva dR^ishyate
  nAnyaiH | tAdR^isho rudro dR^iShTaH sanno .asmAnmR^iDayAti|
  sukhinaH karotvityarthaH |

  That Rudra whose throat is blue due to bearing the kAlakUTa
  poison, He only being distinctly reddish in color, being
  present in the orb of the sun, moves to achieve the rising
  and setting functions. The objective of Rudra's assuming
  the role of being in the Sun's orb is thus stated. Moreover,
  the cowherds who are without purifying ceremonies (saMskAras)
  of the vedas, too see Him, the Rudra of the form of Aditya in
  the solar orb. The women who carry water (in pots) too see Him.
  All beings, including animals such as cows, buffalos, etc., see
  Rudra who is of the form of Aditya, situated in the solar orb.
  Rudra assumes the form of Aditya just so that He can grant
  everyone a vision (darshan) of Himself. Only those who have
  known  the Vedas, not others, can see the form of Rudra as He
  lives in KailAsa and other places, not others. May such Rudra,
  seen by us (in the form of Aditya), make us happy.


  1) Although Brahman is present everywhere, It can be spoken of
  as being present in some specific places. One such place is
  the heart. Another is the sun. During sandhyAvandana, that is
  why we say "asAvAdityo brahma", the sun is Brahman.

  The R^ig Vedic saurasUkta reveals that the sun is the soul
   or heart of the universe.

  A prA dyAvAprithivI antarikShaM sUrya AtmA
  jagatastasthuShashcha |

  sUrya (the sun), the soul (Atman) of all movable and immovable
  things, pervades the heaven, earth, and the intermediate region.

 2) Rudra/Shiva is called the blue-throated One (nIlakaNTha or
   nIlagrIva) because He is said to have swallowed the kAlakUTa
   poison during the churning of the ocean by the gods and demons.
   Instead of completely swallowing the poison, Shiva kept it
   in His throat, thereby coloring the throat wth a blue ring.

  Notes based on the commentary of BhaTTa-bhAskara

  1) BhaTTa BhAskara interprets the mantra slightly differently.
     He agrees that cowherds and the water-carrying women are
     not qualified to know Rudra. But he asks,

     "kimidaM vibhajyAbhidhIyate?" Why make such distinctions?

     sarve eva devasya mahimAvedane gopAlAdikalpAH

     Everyone is only as competent as the cowherds, etc., in
     knowing the greatness of the God Rudra.

     To show this, the mantra says "vishvA bhUtAni" (vishvA
     should be vishvAni, but in the Vedas vishvAni becomes
     vishvA per the sUtra "sheshchhandasi bahulam.h.")

     shrutyadibhirapi durGYAnaM chakshhushhaiva pashyanti

     Even through shruti, etc., it is difficult to know Rudra,
     (but) everyone sees Him with eyes (as being present in
     in the sun).

       || AUM namo bhagavate rudrAya ||


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