Shiva Samkalpa

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Sat Jul 21 22:50:31 CDT 2001

Today was the first day of Shravana, the month which is especially beloved
of Shiva Bhagawan.  Often in mandirs and the homes of learned people, this
is when there is daily recitation and yajna of the Rudri.  This is eight
suktas from the Yajurveda which are considered especially related to Shiva
Bhagawan.  The chief are 'namaka' and 'chamaka' but in the first there is
what is called Shivasamkalpa sukta consisting of 6 rks is also
interesting.  In fact some people also call it Shivasamkalpopanishad
because although it is part of the karmakanda, it also has an adhyatmic
significance.  In the Shuklayajurveda it forms the 34th adhyaya of the
Vajasaneyi Samhita.  Here is a translation.  It is based on what I was
told when I learnt it, the Sanskrit commentary of Uvatacharya and Gujarati
notes of Shri Nathuram Sharma, a saint who lived in the early part of the
20th century.  I have not included the text of the mantras themselves
because they should be learnt only by a qualified Brahmana from the mouth
of his Guru.

1. That mind which in the waking state through the means of the senses
roams through this world[1], and which in the dream state roams through
many worlds [2] and in the state of deep sleep returns to its origin[3],
that far wanderer, that light of knowledge[4] my mind, may you have good

2. The means by which a man who wants to do good[6], whose senses are
stilled and who is wise and dilligent beomes proficient in yajnas and
other karmas established by the shastras and also that which is the
principal and most revered of the means of knowledge, my mind, may you
have good intentions.

3. That mind which disregarding the demands of the senses is focused on
knowledge alone, and which knows the elements of the universe[7], constant
and immortal, which lives inside a man but is capable of illuminating what
is outside, without whom no actions are possible, my mind, may you have
good intentions.

4. That exists until mukti[8], that knows past, present and future,
through which the yogis obtain immortality[9], and through which the yajna
with seven priests[10] is performed, my mind, may you have good

5. That mind which is the hub of the chariot wheel whose spokes are the
Rks, Yajus, and Samans and whose axle is knowledge and which is pulled
this way and that by the sense-horses, my mind may you be of good

6. Just as a good charioteer makes the horses run according to his
commands so they go where he wants them too, so too the mind can guide a
man towards his desire and by restraining animal instincts lead to that
dweller in the heart who is immoirtal and free of turmoil[11], my mind may
you have good intentions.

[1]  The eyes, ears record data but it is the mind that makes it mean

[2] As much as there is which is novel and wonderful in this world, the
imagination can come up with a thousand times as much.

[3] In deep sleep, the senses withdraw into the mind and the mind
withdraws into the atman giving some taste of the bliss and tranquility of
Brahman.  But like the other two states it is fleeting and unstable so a
poor substitute for the real brahmajnana.

[4] The mind is like a light that illuminates the darkness of ignorance
through knowledge.

[5] Shivasamkalpa.  The wandering mind is the cause of all sorrows but
when turned to the right goals, it becomes the vehicle by which release is

[6] karmanishta, literally established in karma.

[7] padarthas.  The essential constituents of reality.  Different schools
count them differently.

[8]  The mind deals with samsara.  as important as it is, it too is part
of samsara and becomes non-exstent or irrelevant after mukti.

[9] By understanding the true nature of time past, present and future, the
Yogis conquer death.

[10] The yajna called Agnishtoma has seven priests (hotrs) or
alternatively the seven are the hotr (represents Rgveda), adhvaryu
(Yajurveda), udgatr (Samaveda), Brahmana (Atharvaveda), The yajaman and
his wife, and Agni himself who is the hotr of the Gods and brings the
offerings to them.  These seven are needed in any shrauta yajna.

[11] i.e. the Atma which is none other than Brahman.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at>

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