Shri Rudram 1.6

Anand Hudli anandhudli at HOTMAIL.COM
Mon Oct 5 16:39:36 CDT 1998

               || AUM namo bhagavate rudrAya ||

 The Rishi of this mantra is kaNva, the devatA shambhu, and the
 meter anuShTubh.

 The dhyAna shloka of this mantra is mentioned by BhaTTa bhAskara

 chandrArdhamauliM kAlAriM vyAlayaGYopavItinam.h |
 jvalatpAvakasaMkAshaM dhyAyeddevaM trilochanam.h ||

 One should meditate on the Three-eyed God (Shiva), who bears the
 crescent moon on His head, who is the enemy of (the God of) Death,
 who wears a sacred thread (yajnopavIta) made of snakes and who
 resembles the blazing fire.

 This Rik, 1.6 talks of the persuasive powers of speech of Rudra.
 He is an expert in talking persuasively and always in favor of
 His devotees. Rama was very impressed by the persuasive speech of
 Hanuman who is, after all, an amsha (part) of Rudra. If Hanuman
 is an expert in using the powers of speech, how can anyone possibly
 exceed Rudra in the art of speech?

 Shiva intercedes on behalf of His devotees whenever
 other  Gods act on them. A story that best illustrates this is
 that of Markandeya who was destined to die at a young age.
 He worshipped Shiva. When the time of his death came, Shiva Himself
 appeared from within the linga and prevented Yama, the God of Death
 from taking away Markandeya's life.

 adhyavochadadhivaktA prathamo daivyo bhishhak.h |
 ahIMshcha sarvAJNjaMbhayansarvAshcha yAtudhAnyaH ||

   (Shri Rudram: Anuvaka 1, Rik 6)

 adhyavochat.h - May He speak in favor
 adhivaktA -  He who always speaks in favor of His devotees
 prathamo -  the foremost among Gods
 daivyo -   He who is capable of protecting all Gods
 bhishhak.h - the physician par excellence
 ahIMshcha - the serpents, tigers, and other vicious animals
 sarvAn.h -  all
 jaMbhayan.h - destroying
 sarvAshcha - and all
 yAtudhAnyaH - the evil spirits, demons, etc.

 May He (Rudra) speak in (my) favor, who always speaks in favor of
 His devotees, who is the foremost among Gods, who is the origin of
 Gods, and who is the best of healers, while annihilating the
 visible enemies of mine such as serpents, tigers, and other vicious
 animals, and also the invisible enemies such as evil spirits, demons,

 sAyaNAchArya bhAShyam.h (Commentary of sAyaNAchArya)

 yo rudro .adhivaktA .adhiko .ayamityevaM sarveShAmagre mAM prati
 vaktuM xamastenokte sati mama sarvAdhikyaM tadAnImevAstIti |
 atastAdR^isho rudro .adhyavochat.h | mAM sarvAdhikaM vadatu |
 kIdR^isho .adhivaktA | prathamaH | devanAM madhye mukhyaH |
 daivyaH | sarvAndevAnarhati | svayaM devAnpAlayituM xama ityarthaH |
 bhiShak.h | etasya dhyAnamAtreNa sarvarogopashamanAdayaM
 chikitsakaH |
 kiM kurvan.h | ahIMshcha sarvAnsarpavyAghrAdInsarvAnapi | sarvAshcha
 yAtudhAnyaH sarvA api rAxasajAtIrjaMbhayan.h vinAshayan.h ||

 My excellence (or superiority) is confirmed only by the saying of
 Rudra who is worthy of speaking in my favor and confirming my
 eminence in the presence of everyone. May that Rudra say that I am
 superior or exalted. And what is the nature of (Rudra) who speaks in
 my favor? He is "prathama", the foremost among Gods. daivyaH means He
 is a match for all Gods, and He is worthy of protecting all Gods. He
 is The Healer, The Physician, because by merely thinking about Him,
 all diseases (physical and mental) vanish. (May Rudra act thus
 towards me), annihilating all (enemies of mine) such as serpents,
 tigers, etc., and also all rAkShasas and other evil spirits of that

 Notes based on BhaTTa bhAskara's commentary

 1) The first five Riks beginning with "namaste rudra manyava ..." are
    pratyaxakR^ita-mantrAH, ie. they address Rudra directly. The
    mantras beginning with the current one (1.6) and the next three
    mantras are paroxakR^itAH, ie. they address Rudra indirectly. The
    devotee has, in the first five mantras, appealed to Rudra and His
    weapons to spare the world from His wrath, to assume a benevolent
    form, and to make the world filled with joy and benevolence.

 2) adhyavochat.h  is interpreted as adhibravItu as per the Panini
    sutra "chhandasi luN^laN^liTaH." loDarthe luN^.h, the Aorist
    (luN^.h) adhyavochat.h is to be understood as the Imperative
    (loT.h) adhivaktu or adhibravItu. May Rudra speak in (my) favor
    or intercede on (my)  behalf.

 3) Rudra is "sadA bhaktebhyo .adhivachanasamarthaH", always an expert
    in speaking in favor of His devotees.

 4) This mantra (1.6) is capable of curing all diseases, physical and
    mental, and destroys evil influences of all kinds.
    The R^ig Vedic Rudra sUkta declares "bhiShaktamaM tvA bhiShajAM
    shR^iNomi", "I hear that You are the best of the physicians,
    (O Rudra!)"

               || AUM namo bhagavate rudrAya ||


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