Lingapuranantargata Shiva Sahasranamam

Brahmashri Dr. V. Shriramana Sharma

Purana Content 

Once Mahavishnu worshipped Bhagavan Shiva by a thousand lotuses seeking victory for the Devas tormented by the Asuras. But one lotus collected for that disappeared. He offered His own eye which was akin to a lotus. Shiva appeared and bestowed His Friend the eye and additionally the Chakra to defeat the Asuras.

The sthala purana says that this happened at Thiruveezhimizhalai kshetram in Tiruvarur District of Thamizhagam. Due to this the Swami there is known as Netrarpaneshvara (in Tamil Veezhinathar).

The names uttered by Mahavishnu to worship Shiva at that occasion are given in the 98th Adhyaya of the Linga Purana Purvardha. Researchers say that there are 11 Shiva Sahasranamas. The speciality of this amongst them is that it was used by the Supreme God Vishnu to worship the Supreme God Shiva on the above occasion.

A scholar by name Ganesha Ballala has composed a vyakhyana on the Linga Purana by name “Shiva Toshini”. This was previously published by Mumbai Venkateshvara Press in 1907 and later by Motilal Publishers in 1973.

Translation by the subtle inspiration of the Shankaracharya

In 1982 December, a senior devotee of our Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam Shri Kodambakkam Jayaraman had the opportunity of having darshana of Shri Chandrashekharendra Sarasvati Shankaracharya at Mahagaon on a pradosha day. He noticed that this sahasranama was then chanted in the presence of the Shankaracharya. Later with the help of the Ashtadasha Purana Sangraha published by Brahmashri Shrivatsa Soma Deva Sharma, he identified this as being in Linga Purana.

He discussed with some astika friends regarding publishing this with translation for the easy understanding of people. For translation he requested one Shri Janakiramanan who had been conducting Samskrita classes at Chennai Kotturpuram.

However Shri Janakiramanan hesitated that “We cannot enter into such a great task ourselves. It would only be possible based on a vyakhyana of earlier scholars.” Such a text could not be obtained despite searching in many libraries.

When he was dejectedly coming out of the Chennai Oriental Library, an unknown person came, asked “What are you searching” and was informed. Through this, it was possible to locate the Linga Purana with Shivatoshini commentary. Thus Divine Grace stood him in good stead.

Shri Janakiramanan did the Tamil translation based on this. This was published in 1989 November via Ishta Siddhi Vinayakar Veda Parayana Sabha, Choolaimedu, Chennai.

Further later in 1991 July, his own Hindi translation was published by Shri Purushottama Ashrama, Hrishikesh. (As the cost of that book it was written “Love towards Guru Maharaj and reading daily”.)

The Shankaracharya blessing with the phala shruti

In the preface of both these publications, it has been clearly mentioned that our Shri Chandrashekharendra Sarasvati Shricharana, Shankaracharya of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam, has given the following effect for this Sahasranama. It is understood that this anugraha was done when the translator Shri Janakiramanan went to have darshana of the Shankaracharya before publication.

The Shankaracharya has blessed that “Due to the state of the times, disunity is seen nowadays at various levels. Due to this, between spouses, siblings, parents-children and such surrounding family, friends, institutions, communities, regions and nations, separation, quarrels and even upto wars may happen. Chanting this is an excellent remedy to that.”

We can understand that the Shankaracharya has stated this effect for this stotra signifying unity of Hari-Hara. It is also notable that in “Advaita Akshara Malika”, the golden jubilee publication of Advaita Sabha, an institution of our Shrimatam, the very first article titled “Shiva Vishnu Abheda in Bhagavatpada Siddhanta” was composed by the Shankaracharya Himself.

The background of the current publication

I first saw the Hindi edition of this Sahasranama in 2019 January. But some doubts arose upon reading it. I tried to look for the Vyakhyana mentioned in the preface thinking it would be appropriate to correct the text based on an old vyakhyana. I could not get it then.

Since many years my grandfather used to read the Vishnu and Ganesha Sahasranama-s daily. Around 2021 March he was very weak. So I thought to read what he had been reading and did the text correction of Ganesha Sahasranama based on the vyakhyana of Shri Bhaskara Raya.

At this time, I once more made efforts for the above Shiva Sahasranama. Shri Janakiramanan had later on taken sannyasa by name Shantananda Puri and attained siddhi. I found a website created by his devotees. Another edition of the Hindi publication is available there. So I enquired regarding the vyakhyanam thinking that the swamigal may have collected it. I could not obtain any information.

In 2022 May, I got an information from the Mahasannidhanam of our Acharya Swamigal that “Shiva Sahasranama is to be popularized” mentioning the above effects. Thus based on Guru Kripa I again enquired with some people.

Due to the speciality of that Anugraha, only now I came to know about the earlier events from Shri Kodambakkam Jayaraman. He also sent me a copy of the Tamil translation published earlier.

As the next great anugraha, I learnt that with our Shrimatam’s devotee Brahmashri Tillaisthanam Rajagopala Ghanapathi was available the full Linga Purana including Shiva Sahasranama with vyakhyana which I had been searching for (like Shri Janakiramanan earlier). This is that Motilal publication.

Based on this, the text has been corrected and is now published.

Thus this was created by the inspiration of our Kamakoti Shankaracharya, and the concerted efforts and cooperation of many. I am fortunate to submit this publication at the feet of our Shricharana who is Hari-Hara-abheda-svarupa as per the saying “gurur vishnur gurur devo maheshvarah”.

Despite efforts to do correctly, some mistakes which are common to human error may have occurred. I submit that it is possible to correct and publish if pointed out with corroboration.

I express gratitude to all those who did earlier publications, Shri Jayaraman who played many roles in the above events, the Tillaisthanam family who provided the copy of the text with commentary, Smt Vidya who sent the Hindi version, Shri Karthik who helped with preparing the document, and many other astika friends who helped.

May Hari-Hara, and our Shricharana who advised “Maitreem Bhajata” bless us with unity, which is the practical form of Advaita!

Jaya Jaya Shankara Hara Hara Shankara!