Why Shiva is Called Shambhu or Shankar

While trying to understand the purport of this word Shambhu, we must also pair it with another word known as Shankar. Note that both these words come from the common root known as, ’Sham’. This is a very rich word in Sanskrit having several shades of meaning. Some of the ideas implied by the term […]

Why Shiva is Called Destroyer

Lord Shiva is one of the trinity of gods in Hinduism. Considered the manifestation of the Apara Brahman (Formless Supreme Source of the Universe) in a form to be enjoyed and worshipped by the devotees, Shiva is considered the destroyer or annihilator or the final destination of the entire gamut of creation. The other two […]

Why Shiva is Called Chandrashekhar

Chandrashekhar is a mesmerizing name of Lord Shiva formed by the union of two words – Chandra (moon) and Shekhar (crown) meaning the Lord with moon as his crown. Shiva is resplendent. He is the embodiment of supreme Godhead. His divine plays are mysterious and beyond human comprehension. Here is an interesting story how this […]

Why Shiva is Called Ashutosh

The term Ashutosh means one who is easily pleased. Lord Shiva is called by this name since He is highly compassionate and merciful and does not discriminate between devas (gods), asuras (demons) and naras (humans) for granting the boons they ask for. There are several stories from mythology that highlight Shiva’s easily pleased nature. Once […]

Why Shiva is Called Bholenath

Bholenath is one of the most interesting names of Lord Shiva that means the innocent Lord (Bhole – innocent; Nath – Lord). Shiva is merciful and highly compassionate to his devotees. The easily pleased Lord blesses his devotees with bounteous boons often without even reflecting on the repercussions of the boons he gives. This is […]

Why Shiva is Called Bhoothnath

The title Boothnath ascribed to Lord Shiva is highly interesting and is endowed with a deep meaning. The literal translation of the word means the Lord (Nath) of Bhooth (here booth could mean five elements, spirits or ganas). Here we discuss the different dimensions of this name. The term Booth means the five elements that […]

Why Shiva is Called Ardhnarishwar

Before discussing why Shiva is called Ardhanarishwar, let us first split up this word and understand its meaning. (Ardha – half, Nari – woman, ishwar – Lord) The meaning is the Lord who has the feminine form in half of his body. As per this concept, Lord Shiva is shown in his androgynous form with […]

Why Shiva is Called Adiguru

The title Adiguru is explained as the first teacher (eternal teacher) or the Supreme Master. In this way we can visualize Lord Shiva as the fountain head of all wisdom. In the Indian tradition, knowledge is transferred through the lineage of teacher – disciple called as ‘Guru Shishya Parampara’.  The eternal wisdom flowed from the […]

Why Shiva is Called Adiyogi

The term Yoga in Sanskrit is a highly comprehensive one. Very commonly associated with the eight stepped path (Ashtanga Yoga) championed by the Sage Patanjali, Yoga refers to the process of training, taming and sublimating the body, mind and spirit. Here we discuss the logic behind the name of Lord Shiva as Adiyogi or the […]

Why Shiva is Called Gangadhara

Why Shiva is Called Gangadhara

Lord Shiva is called as ‘Gangadhar’ as he carries the holy Ganges River on his matted hair. Why should Ganges flow from Shiva’s head is revealed through an interesting story narrated here. The story Once a king called Sagara, one of the forefathers of Lord Rama ruled the kingdom Kosala. He wished to conduct Ashwamedha […]

Why Shiva is Called Tripurari

The term Tripurari translates as the destroyer of the three cities. Let us go through the interesting mythological story narrating how Lord Shiva got this title. The store behind the name Once there were three powerful demons called Kamalaksha, Tarakaksha and Vidyunmalin who were blessed with three flying fortified cities made of gold, silver and […]