[Advaita-l] Dog Headed God

Sunil Bhattacharjya sunil_bhattacharjya at yahoo.com
Fri Feb 18 11:08:56 CST 2011


If I may add Manu says about dedicating meat before it can be considered for consumption and one custom has to offer the meat to Mrigendra rupi Vishnu, who roams(ed) the world.


Sunil KB

--- On Fri, 2/18/11, Venkata sriram P <venkatasriramp at yahoo.in> wrote:

From: Venkata sriram P <venkatasriramp at yahoo.in>
Subject: [Advaita-l] Dog Headed God
To: advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org
Date: Friday, February 18, 2011, 3:36 AM

Namaste Dear Venkatesh Murthy,
In tantra, the vAhanA of deities have special significance for appeasing the deities.  The sunaka is the vAhana of Bhairava and if properly appeased, the Bhairava is pleased.   That is the reason, at the time of kAsi samAradhana, the Dog is worshipped at homes by chanting Kalabhairava Ashtaka and naivedya of vadai is offered.  
In Kali Upasana, the appeasing of Dog is taken to be an aspect of omen (good / bad).  For instance, for testing whether Goddess Kali is pleased with mantra anushtana, Siva Bali is offered at the cross-roads in the midnight or at graveyard.  If the Dog comes howling and accepts the Siva Bali, it implies that Kali is pleased; if the Dog doesn't take the Bali, there are certain prayaschitta karmas for that.  Even the colour of the Dog  is also the deciding factor.  
The Bhairava Upasana is generally done with vAmAchAra mode with madhya offerings.  But Sri Abhinava Vidya Tirtha Mahaswamigal of Sringeri adviced some of his devotees that Bhairava can be appeased with sattvika mode of worship without any inhibitions and that is what is being carried out in Sringeri.  
Now, as you pointed the place called Ujjain, there is a wonderful temple for Bhairava and even today the worship is done with vamachara rituals and naivedya of madya is offered there and some portion of the same is offered to devotees as tirtha.  But we are free to say a diplomatic no to that.  
Sri Kalidasa in his work "Chidgagana Chandrika" explains the esoteric essence of the Bhairava Tattva and the sunaka aspect and obviously the esoteric science is Tantra.  Afterall, it is tanyate vistAryate jnAnam iti tantraH ie., that which widens the horizons of knowledge is tantra.  The punaH srushti or the Creation is accompanied with a Formidable Howl by Bhairava which is depicted with the Howling of Dog [bhai ...bhai ...rava] or [bhayankara rava].   Mahamaheshwara Abhinava Gupta Pada also mentions some of the esoteric aspect in the sutra "udyamO bhairavaH".
namaH svabhyaH svapatibhyascha namaH...

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