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Sunday, September 23, 2007

Shiva Sahasranama

Sahasranama means thousand (sahasra) names (nama), and Sahasranama Stotra is a hymn eulogizing the Lord by recounting one thousand of His names. As the various sects of Hinduism (Shaivism, Shaktism and Vaishnavism) grew and spread, it must have become extremely popular to write hymns of a thousand names for the primary Deity of worship. There are various Sahasranama Stotras, but obviously here we concentrate on the Shiva Sahasranama Stotra.

What makes the Shiva Sahasranama Stotra unique is the number of times and variations of the hymn that are found in ancient texts. The appearance of the Shiva Sahasranama Stotra in at least 18 different texts is a testament to the fact that Shaivism in various forms was once immensely popular throughout the Indian subcontinent. In fact, Shaivism was the most widespread and influential form of Hinduism prior to 1200 CE (before the beginning of the Islamic era and the pan-Indian Vaishnava devotional movements).

Below is a list of the texts in which Shiva Sahasranama Stotras are found.

1. Mahabharata (Anushasanaparva version)
2. Mahabharata
(Shantiparva version)
3. Linga Purana
(version 1; chapter 65)
4. Linga Purana
(version 2; chapter 97)
5. Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita)
6. Vayu Purana

7. Brahmanda Purana

8. Devi Mahabhagavata Upapurana
9. Padma Purana
10. Skanda Purana
11. Vamana Purana
12. Markandeya Purana
13. Saura Purana
14. Bhairava Tantra
15. Bhringiridi Samhita
16. Rudrayamala Tantra
17. Shiva Rahasya Itihasa
18. Akasa Kalpa Tantra

Using the reductionist approach, we arrive at four different major variants of the Shiva Sahasranama:

1. Mahabharata (Anushasanaparva version)
2. Mahabharata
(Shantiparva version)
3. Shiva Purana
4. Rudrayamala Tantra

The two Mahabharata versions were copied into most of the Puranas, including the Linga Purana, with minor variations. An exception is the Shiva Purana version which appears to be original. Another original version is found in the Rudrayamala Tantra, which was later copied into the Shiva Rahasya Itihasa. If we were to hazard a guess as to which school the Shiva Sahasranama Stotras came from, it would be fairly reasonable to say that the Mahabharata (and most Purana) versions belong to the Smartas, the Shiva Purana version belongs to the Pashupatas, and the Rudrayamala Tantra version belongs to the Tantrik Shaivas.

The most ancient form of the Shiva Sahasranama Stotra is found in the Anushasanaparva book of the Mahabharata, wherein Shiva is eulogized by Krishna. The next most ancient version is likely the one found in the Shantiparva book of the Mahabharata, which is thought to have been inserted later into the book, and not found in standard critical editions of the Mahabharata. The 1000 names given below are from the Linga Purana and are probably based on the Shantiparva book of the Mahabharata with some variations. In the Linga Purana, it is not Krishna, but Vishnu who eulogizes Shiva.

It is important to remember that in any given Sahasranama, several names are repeated more than once, and in most there are actually more than 1000 names. Given below are only the first 1000 names as found in the Linga Purana.

[© Agnideva, 2007]

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Shiva Sahasranama
1000 Names of Shiva from the Linga Purana

Bhava; Shiva; Hara; Rudra; Purusha; Padmalochana; Arthitavya; Sadachara; Sarva; Shambhu; Maheshvara; Ishvara; Sthanu; Ishana; Sahasraksha; Sahasrapada; Variyana; Varada; Vandya; Shankara; Parameshvara; Gangadhara; Shuladhara; Pararthaikaprayojana; Sarvajna; Saradevadi; Giridhanva; Jatadhara; Chandrapida; Chandramouli; Vidvana; Vishvamareshvara; Vedantasarasarvasva; Kapali; Nilalohita; Jnanadhara; Aparichedya; Gouribharta; Ganeshvara; Ashtamurti; Vishvamurti; Trivarga; Svargasadhana; Jnanagamya; Dridaprajna; Devadeva; Trilochana; Vamadeva; Mahadeva; Pandu; Paridrida; Vishvarupa; Virupaksha; Vagisha; Shuchi; Antara; Sarvapranayasvadi; Vrishanka; Vrishavahana; Isha; Pinaki; Khattangi; Chitravesha; Chirantana; Tomohara; Mahayogi; Brhamangahrita; Jati; Kalakala; Krittivasa; Subhaga; Pranavatmaka; Unmattavesha; Chakshushya; Durvasa; Smarashasana; Dridayudha; Parameshthiparayana; Anadimadhyanidhana; Girisha; Girivandhava; Kuberavandhu; Shrikantha; Lokavarnottamottama; Samanya; Deva; Kodandi; Nilakantha; Parashvadhi; Vishalaksha; Mrigavyadha; Suresha; Suryatapana; Dharmakarmakshama; Ksehtra; Bhagavan; Bhaganetravida; Urga; Pashupati; Tarkshya. (100)

Priyabhakta; Priyasvada; Dantodayakara; Daksha; Karpadi; Kamashasana; Shmashananilaya; Suksha; Shmashanastha; Maheshvara; Lokakarta; Bhutapati; Mahakarta; Mahoushadhi; Uttara; Gopati; Gopta; Jnanagamya; Puratana; Nita; Sunita; Shuddhatma; Soma; Somavrita; Sukhi; Somapa; Amritapa; Mahaniti; Mahamati; Ajatashatru; Aloka; Sambhavya; Havyavahana; Lokakara; Vedakara; Sutrakara; Sanatana; Maharshi; Kapilacharya; Vishvadipti; Trilochana; Pinakapani; Bhurdeva; Svastida; Sadasvastikrita; Tridhama; Soubhaga; Sarvasar-vajna; Sarvagochara; Brahmadhrika; Vishvasrika; Svarga; Karnikara; Priya; Kavi; Sahakhavishakha; Goshakha; Shiva; Naikya; Kratu; Gangaplavodaka; Bhava; Sakala; Supatisthira; Vijitatma; Vidheyatma; Bhutavahana; Sarathi; Sagana; Ganakarya; Sukirti; Chhinnasamshaya; Kamadeva; Kamapala; Bhasmodvulitavigraha; Bhasmapriya; Bhasmashayi; Kami; Kanta; Kritagama; Samayukta; Nivrittatma; Dharmayukta; Sadashiva; Chaturmukha; Chaturvahu; Duravasa; Durasada; Durgama; Durlabha; Durga; Sarga; Sarvayudhavisharda; Sutantu; Adhyatmayoganilaya; Tantuvarddhana; Shubhanga; Lokasagara; Amritashana; Bhasmashuddhikara. (200)


Meru; Ojasvi; Shuddhavigraha; Hiranyareta; Bharani; Marichi; Mahimalaya; Mahahrada; Mahagarbha; Siddharvrindaravandita; Vyaghracharmadhara; Vyali; Mahabhuta; Mahanidhi; Amritanga; Amritavapu; Panchayajna; Prabhanjana; Panchavimshatitattvajna; Parijataparavara; Sulabha; Suvrata; Shura; Vangmayanidhi; Nidhi; Varnashramaguru; Varni; Shatrujita; Shatrutapana; Ashrama; Kshapana; Kshama; Jnanavana; Achalachala; Pramanabhuta; Durjneya; Suparna; Vayuvahana; Dhanurddhara; Dhanurveda; Gunarashi; Gunakara; Anantadrishti; Ananda; Danda; Damayita; Dama; Abhivadya; Mahacharya; Vishvakarma; Visharada; Vitaraga; Vinitatma; Tapasvi; Bhutabhavan; Unmattavesha; Pracchanna; Jitakama; Ajitapriya; Kalyana; Prakriti; Kalpa; Sarvaloka; Prajapati; Tapasvitaraka; Dhimana; Pradhana; Prabhu; Avyayaya; Lokapa; Antarhitatma; Kalpadi; Kamalekshana; Vedashastrarthatattvajna; Nityama; Niyamashraya; Chandra; Surya; Shani; Ketu; Virama; Vidruchhavi ; Bhaktigamya; Parabrahma; Mrigavanarpana; Anagha; Adrirajalya; Kanta; Paramatma; Jagadguru; Sarvakarmachala; Tvashta; Mangalya; Mangalarata; Mahatapa; Dirghatapa; Sthavishtha; Sthavira; Dhruva; Ahaha; Samvatsara. (300)

Vyapti; Pramana; Tapah; Samvatsarakra; Mantra; Pratyaya; Sarvadarshana; Aja; Sarveshvara; Snigddha; Sarvadi; Agnida; Vasu; Vasumana; Satya; Sarvapapahara; Hara; Amritashashvata; Shanta; Banahasta; Pratapavana; Kamandaludhara; Dhanvi; Vedanga; Vedavit; Muni; Bhrajishnu; Bhojana; Bhokta; Lokaneta; Duradhara; Atindriya; Mahamaya; Sarvavasa; Chatushpatha; Kalayogi; Mahanada; Mahotsaha; Mahabala; Mahabuddhi; Mahavirya; Bhutachari; Purandara; Nishachara; Pretachari; Mahashakti; Mahadyuti; Anirdeshyavapu; Shrimana; Sarvaharyamitagati; Vahushruta; Vahumaya; Niyatatma; Bhavodhava; Narataka; Ojastejodyutikara; Sarvakamaka; Nrityapriya; Nrityanritya; Prakashatmapratapa; Buddhaspashtakshara; Mantra; Sammana; Sarasamplava; Yugadikrita; Yugavarta; Gambhira; Vrishavahana; Ishta; Vishishta; Shishteshta; Sharabha; Sharabhadhanusha; Apangnidhi; Adhishtanavijaya; Jayakalavit; Pratishthita; Pramanajna; Hiranyakavacha; Hari; Virochana; Suragana; Vidyesha; Vibudhashraya; Valarupa; Balonmathi; Vivarta; Gahanagruru ; Karana; Karta; Sarvavandhavimochana; Vidvattama; Vitabhaya; Vishvahbarta; Nishakara; Vyavasaya; Vyavasthana; Sthananda; Jagadadija; Dundubha. (400)

Lalita; Vishva; Bhavatmatmasthita; Vireshvara; Virabhadra; Viraha; Virabhrida; Virata; Virachudamani; Vetta; Tivrananda; Nadidhara; Ajnadhara; Trishuti; Shipivishita; Shivalaya; Valakhilya; Mahachapa; Tigmamashu; Nidhi; Avyaya; Abhirama; Susharanya; Subrahmanya; Sudhapati; Maghavana; Koushika; Gomana; Vishrama; Sarvashasana; Lalataksha; Vishvadeha; Sara; Samsarachakrabhita; Amoghadandi; Madhyastha; Hiranya; Brahmavarchasi; Paramartha; Paramaya; Shambara; Vyaghraka; Anala; Ruchi; Vararuchi; Vandya; Ahaspati; Aharpati; Ravivirocha; Skandha; Shasta; Vaivasvata; Ajana; Yukti; Unnatakirti; Shantaraga; Parajaya; Kailasapati; Kamari; Savita; Ravilochana; Vidvattama; Vitabhaya; Vishvaharta; Nitya; Anivarita; Niyatakalyana; Punyashravanadkirtana; Durashrava; Vishvasaha; Dhyeya; Duhsvapnanashana; Uttaraka; Dushkritiha; Durddharsha; Duhsaha; Abhaya; Anadi; Bhu; Bhulakshmi; Kiriti; Tridashadhipa; Vishvagopta; Vishvabharta; Sudhira; Ruchirangada; Janana; Janajanmadi; Pritimana; Nitimana; Naya; Vishishta; Kashyapa; Bhanu; Bhima; Bhimaparakrama; Pranava; Saptadhachara; Mahakaya; Mahamadhanu. (500)

Janmadhipa; Mahadeva; Sakaalagamaparaga; Tattvatativavivekatma; Vibhushnu; Bhutibhushana; Rishi; Brahmanavida; Jishnu; Janmamrityujaratiga; Yajna; Yajnapati; Yajva; Yajnanta; Amogha; Vikrama; Mahendra; Durbhara; Seni; Yajnanga; Yajnavahana; Panchabrahmasamutpatti; Vishvesha; Vimalodaya; Atmayoni; Anadyanta; Shadavimsha; Saptalodhaka; Gayatrivallabha; pramshu; Vishvavasa; Prabhakara; Shishu; Girirata; Samrata; Sushena; Surashatruha; Aristamathana; Mukunda; Vigatajvara; Svayamjoti; Anujyoti; Atmajayoti; Achanchala; Kapila; Kapilashmashru; Shastranetra; Trayitanu; Jnanaskandha; Mahajnani; Nirutapatti; Upaplava; Bhaga; Vivasvana; Aditya; Yogacharya; Brihaspati; Udarakirti; Udyogi; Sadyogi; Sadasanmaya; Nakshatramali; Narakesha; Sadhishtana; Shadashraya; Pavitrapani; Papari; Manipura; Manogati; Hritpundarikasina; Shukla; Shantavrishakapi; Vishnu; Grahapati; Krishna; Samartha; Arthanashana; Adharmashatru; Akshashya; Puruhuta; Purushtuta; Brahmagarbha; Vrihadagarbha; Dharmadhenu; Dhanagama; Jagatahitaishi; Supata; Kumara; Kushalagama; Hiranyavarna; Jyotishmana; Nanbhutadhara; Dhvani; Aroga; Niyamadhyaksha; Vishvamitra; Dvijottama; Vrihajyoti; Sudhama; Mahajyoti. (600)

Anuttama; Matamaha; Matarishva; Nabhasvana; Nagaharadhrika; Pulastya; Pulaha; Agastya; Jatukarna; Parashara; Niravarana; Dharmajna; Virincha; Vishtarashrava; Atmabhu; Aniruddha; Atrijnanamurti; Mahayasha; Lokachudamni; Vira; Chandasatya; Parakrama; Vyalakalpa; Mahavriksha; Kanadhara; Alankarishnu; Achala; Rochishnu; Vikramottama; Vegi; Ashushabdapati; Plavana; Shikhisarathi; Asamsrishta; Atithi; Shatrupramthi; Papanashana; Vasushrava; Kavyavaha; Pratapta; Vishvabhojana; Jarya; Jaradhishamana; Lohita; Tananapata; Prishadashva; Nabhahyoni; Supratika; Tamisraha; Nidaghatapana; Megphapaksha; Parapuranjaya; Mukhanila; Sunispanna; Surabhi; Shishiratmaka; Vasanta; Madhava; Grishma; Nabhasya; Vijavahana; Angira; Muni; Atreya; Vimala; Vishvavahana; Pavana; Purujita; Shatru; Trividya; Naravahana; Manovriddhi; Ahamkara; Kshetrajna; Kshetrapalaka; Tejonidhi; Jnananidhi; Vipaka; Vighnakaraka; Adhara; Anuttara; Jneya; Jyestha; Nihshreyasalaya; Shaila; Naga; Tanu; Deha; Danavari; Arindama; Charudhi; Janaka; Charuvishalya; Lokashalyakrita; Chaturveda; Chaturbhava; Chatura; Chaturapriya; Amnaya; Samamaya. (700)

Tirthadevashivalaya; Bahurupa; Maharupa; Sarvarupa; Charachara; Nyayanirvahaka; Nyaya; Nyayagamya; Niranjana; Sahasramurddha; Devendra; Sarvashastraprabhanjana; Munda; Virupa; Vikrita; Dandi; Gunottama; Pingalaksha; Haryaksha; Nilagriva; Niramaya; Sahasrabahu; Sarvesha; Sharanya; Sarvalokbhrita; Padmasana; Paramjyoti; Paravara; Paramophala; Padmagarbha; Vishvagarbha; Vichakshana; Paravarajna; Vijesha; Sumukhasumahasana; Devasuragurudeva; Devasurananmaskrita; Devasuramahatra; Devadideva; Devarshidevasuravaraprada; Devasureshvara; Divya; Devasuramaheshvara; Sarvadevamaya; Achintya; Devatatma; Atmasambhava; Idya; Anisha; Devasimha; Divakara; Vibudhagravarashreshta; Sarvadevottamottama; Shivajnanarata; Shrimana; Shikhishriparvatapriya; Jayastambha; Vishishtambha; Narasimhanipatana; Brahmachari; Lokachari; Dharmachari; Dhanadhipa; Nandi; Nandishvara; Nagna; Nagnavratadhara; Shuchi; Lingadhyaksha; Suradhyaksha; Yugadhyaksha; Yugavaha; Svavasha; Savamsha; Svargasvara; Svaramayasvana; Vijadhyaksha; Vijakarta; Dhanakrita; Dharmavardhana; Dambha; Adambha; Mahadambha; Sarvabhutamaheshvara; Shmashananilaya; Tishya; Setu; Apratimakriti; Lokottara; Sfutaloka; Tryamabaka; Andhakari; Makhadveshi; Vishnukandharapatana; Vitadosha; Akshayaguna; Dakshari; Pushadantahrita; Dhurjati; Khandaparashu. (800)

Saphala; Nishphala; Anagha; Adhara; Sakaladhara; Mrida; Pandurabha; Nata; Purna; Purayita; Punya; Sukumara; Sulochana; Samageya; Priyakara; Punyakirti; Anamaya; Manojava; Tirthavara; Jatila; Jiviteshvara; Jivitantakara; Nitya; Vasureta; Vasukiya; Sadgati; Satkriti; Sakta; Kalakantha; Kaladhara; Mani; Manya; Mahakala; Sadbhuti; Satyaparayana; Chandrasanjivana; Shasta; Lokaguda; Amaradhipa; Lokavandhu; Lokanatha; Kritajnakritibhushana; Anapayakshara; Kanta; Sarvashastrabhutasvara; Tejomayadyutidhara; Lokamaya; Agrani; Anu; Shuchismita; Prasannatma; Durjaya; Duratikrama; Jyotirmaya; Nirakara; Jagannatha; Jaleshvara; Tumbavini; Mahakaya; Vishoka; Shokanashana; Trilokatma; Trilokesha; Shuddha; Shuddhi; Rathakshaja; Avyaktalakshana; Avyakta; Vishampati; Varashila; Varatula; Mana; Manadhanamaya; Brahma; Vishnu; Prajapalaka; Hamsa; Hamsagati; Yama; Vedha; Dhata; Vidhata; Atta; Harta; Chaturmukha; Kailashashikharavasi; Sarvavasi; Satamgati; Hiranyagarbha; Harnia; Purusha; Purvajapita; Bhutalaya; Bhutapati; Bhutida; Bhuvaneshvara; Samyogi; Yogavida; Brahmanya; Brahmanapriya. (900)

Devapriya; Devanatha; Devajna; Devachintaka; Vishamaksha; Kaladhyaksha; Vrishanka; Vrishavardhana; Nirmada; Nirahamkara; Nirmoha; Nirupadrava; Darpaha; Darpita; Dripta; Sarvartuparivartaka; Saptajihva; Sahasrachi; Snigddha; Prakritidakshina; Bhutabhavyabhavanatha; Prabhava; Bhrantinashana; Artha; Anartha; Mahakosha; Parakavyaikapandita; Nishkantaka; Kritananda; Nirvyaja; Vyajamardana; Sattvavana; Sattvika; Satyakirti; Stambhakritagama; Akampita; Gunagrahi; Suprita; Sumukha; Naikatmanaikakarmakrita; Sukshma; Shukara; Dakshina; Skandhadhara; Dhurya; Prakata; Pritivarddhana; Aparajita; Sarvasaha; Vidagddha; Sarvavahana; Adhrita; Svadhrita; Sadhya; Purtamurti; Yashodhara; Varahashringavrika; Vayu; Valavana; Ekanayaka; Shrutiprakasha; Shrutimana; Ekavandhu; Anekadhrika; Shrivallabha; Shivarambha; Shantabhadra; Samanjasa; Bhushaya; Bhutikrita; Bhuti; Bhushana; Bhutavahana; Akaya; Bhaktakayastha; Kalajnanai; Kalavapu; Satyavrata; Mahatyagi; Nishthashantiparayana; Pararthavritti; Varada; Vivikta; Shrutisagara; Anirvinna; Gunagrahi; Kalankanka; Kalankaha; Svabhavarudra; Madhyastha; Shatrughna; Madhyanashaka; Shikhandi; Kavachi; Shuli; Chandi; Mundi; Kundali; Khadgi. (1000)


Aum Namah Shivaya.


Related post: Shiva Sahasranama II.
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4 comments:

Agnideva said...

[The following comment was left elsewhere on the site, but is actually relevant to this particular post]:

Anonymous said...

I came across your article on 14 different Shiva Sahasrams currently available. Do you have those with you or have access to them in any way? How do you know that the one in Shiva Rahasya is copied from Rudrayamala and not otherwise?

Please let me know. Thanks.

BTW, yours is a wonderful blog site for saivaites. You must be truly devoted to Lord Shiva.

19 January, 2009 17:28

RESPONSE:

Agnideva said...

Thank you for the comments. All the points you’ve raised are excellent and valid.

I do not personally have access to all the Shiva Sahasranamas, but I have looked at several. It is a widely held opinion of scholars that the Mahabharata version is the original, and others came later. The Mahabharata/Linga Purana version is most available in print and the Rudra Yamala/Shiva Rahasya version is next most available. A couple of years ago, a lady named Kamakshi Ramaswamy did her PhD thesis at Madras University on Shiva Sahasranamas. She has analyzed and compared various Sahasranama stotras in detail.

So far as I am aware, the Shiva Rahasya is a late text of Shaivism (14th-15th century CE) written likely in southern India. It was specifically written to shadow the Itihasas – Ramayana and Mahabharata – which were otherwise perceived as Vaishnavite. Hence, sometimes it is called the Shiva Rahasya Itihasa (instead of Purana). As a text that tries to bring together different streams of Shaivism – Puranic, Upanishadic and Agamic (Tantrik) – it has drawn and incorporated parts of older texts such as Rudra Yamala, Kamika Agama, Pashupata Brahmana Upanishad, etc. This is why the common Shiva Sahasranama of the Shiva Rahasya and Rudra Yamala is thought to have been taken from the latter text, and not vice versa.

Now, there is always some uncertainty when someone claims something is from the Rudra Yamala. Not everything that claims to be from the Rudra Yamala is actually found in the printed versions or manuscripts of that text. The Shadakshara Stotra is a fine example of this. Though it claims to be from the Rudra Yamala, you will not find it anywhere in the printed text. There is a hypothesis that the original Rudra Yamala (which must have been very voluminous) was lost over time and what survives is a fragment of the original. In any case, the Rudra Yamala is a very old (pre-800 CE) Shaiva-Shakta text, and predates the Shiva Rahasya by several centuries.

I hope that answers your question.

Agnideva.

31 January, 2008 11:08

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

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