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Shiva Mahamrityuanjay Mantra with Gayatri Mantra ! India: Shiva Nataraja (Lord of the Dance)

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Published on Dec 14, 2011

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nataraja
Hindu god Shiva as the cosmic dancer Koothan who performs his divine dance to destroy a weary universe and make preparations for god Brahma to start the process of creation. A Tamil concept, Shiva was first depicted as Nataraja in the famous Chola bronzes and sculptures of Chidambaram. The dance of Shiva in Tillai, the traditional name for Chidambaram, forms the motif for all the depictions of Shiva as Nataraja. He is also known as "Sabesan" which splits as "Sabayil aadum eesan" in Tamil which means "The Lord who dances on the dais".
A cobra uncoils from his lower right forearm, and the crescent moon and a skull are on his crest. He dances within an arch of flames. This dance is called the Dance of Bliss, aananda taandavam.
The upper right hand holds a small drum shaped like an hourglass that is called a ḍamaru in Sanskrit.[4][5][6] A specific hand gesture (mudra) called ḍamaru-hasta (Sanskrit for "ḍamaru-hand") is used to hold the drum.[7] It symbolizes sound originating creation or the beat of the drum is the passage of time.
The upper left hand contains Agni or fire, which signifies destruction. The opposing concepts in the upper hands show the counterpoise of creation and destruction or the fire of life.
The second right hand shows the Abhaya mudra (meaning fearlessness in Sanskrit), bestowing protection from both evil and ignorance to those who follow the righteousness of dharma.
The second left hand points towards the raised foot which signifies upliftment and liberation. It also points to the left foot with the sign of the elephant which leads the way through the jungle of ignorance.
The dwarf on which Nataraja dances is the demon Apasmara (Muyalaka. as known in Tamil), which symbolises Shiva's victory over ignorance. It also represents the passage of spirit from the divine into material.
As the Lord of Dance, Nataraja, Shiva performs the tandava, the dance in which the universe is created, maintained, and dissolved. Shiva's long, matted tresses, usually piled up in a knot, loosen during the dance and crash into the heavenly bodies, knocking them off course or destroying them utterly.
The surrounding flames represent the manifest Universe.
The snake swirling around his waist is kundalini, the Shakti or divine force thought to reside within everything. This also parallels the cords of life warn by the brahmins to represent the second rebirth.
The stoic face of Shiva represents his neutrality, thus being in balance.
"Ta-dum, ta-dum, ta-dum..." beats the drum in Nataraja's hand, as he shakes it, giving rhythm to his dancing feet and sound to his image. Shiva, the auspicious one, is manifest here as the Lord of the Dance, a form he has taken not to entertain but perform cosmic work. Shiva Nataraja is crushing ignorance, presented by the sculptor as a demon under his feet who looks up benevolently at the god, even as his own ruin is in progress.
Nataraja is one of the most important, visually thrilling forms of the Hindu god Shiva. Artists in the Tamil region of southern India began to make this form of Shiva in the early tenth century, with the patronage of kings, inspired by poetry written by ardent devotees and using skills in metal craft developed over hundreds of years. Once made and brought to life through ritual, Nataraja lived in the temple, moving out daily and during festivals, gracing his devotees within the temple and in the streets, as he processed through the town with song and ritual.

Appearing more than a thousand years ago, Nataraja's importance has endured as a god and a popular icon. Today he is worshipped in major temples and circulates in public life. Nataraja represents Indian tradition, cosmic principles, Tamil identity, and classical dance. Artists use his image to sell products, critique society, and present philosophical concepts. Nataraja is truly a god for all time.

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