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Thread: Bhairava

  1. #1
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    Bhairava

    Namaste.

    Bhairava = "Terrific"

    Bhairava is a fierce form of Lord Shiva. I am trying to find some information about Bhairava. I thought I would post anything I find on this thread, and invite others to share their knowledge on Bhairava.


    Bhairava form in Kathmandu, Nepal


    Thanks.

    OM Shanti,
    A.



  2. #2
    Jigar Guest

    Re: Bhairava

    Namaste Agnideva,
    I sugggest to possiblyy look into the root of Rav As I suspect upon a suspicion of wordology.


    maste nam,
    jigar

  3. #3
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    Re: Bhairava

    Quote Originally Posted by Jigar View Post
    I sugggest to possiblyy look into the root of Rav As I suspect upon a suspicion of wordology.
    Namaste Jigar,

    Bhairava is derived from bhaya (fear), so means fearful or terrific. I checked up on rava for you, and rava means cry or roar. But, I don't think rava is part of the etymology of Bhairava.

    OM Shanti,
    A.



  4. #4
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    Re: Bhairava

    Shri Bhairava Deva

    Bhairava holds within Himself the entire universe by reducing all the Shaktis to sameness with Himself and inasmuch as He completely devours within Himself the entire mass of ideation (which is responsible for sense of difference) - Shiva Sutras, Jaideva Singh

    Bhairava means "terrifying" and it is an adjective applied to Shiva in His fearful aspect. Yet in Kashmir Shaivism, the three letters of this name are taken in a different manner. Bha means bharana, maintenance; ra means ravana, withdrawal and va means vamana, creation of the universe.
    The Rudrayamala Tantra, quoted in a puja manual Bhairava Upasana, describes the worship of Vatuka Bhairava, or Bhairava as a small boy, and gives his mantra as hrim vatukaya apadudharanaya kuru kuru batukaya hrim. Although the ascription to Rudrayamala is commonly found in the colophons of tantrik texts, these passages do not appear in the modern work now available.

    However, the same work gives dhyanas, or meditation images of Vatuka Bhairava as comprising the entire three gunas, and also separately as Vatuka in His sattvik, rajasik and tamasik guises. In his form as the three gunas, He is described as being like pure crystal, effulgent as the rays from 1,000 suns, shining like a sapphire thundercloud and wearing sapphire coloured clothing. He has three eyes, eight arms, four arms and two arms, depending on the preponderance of the guna, has a fanged, fearsome gaping mouth, and a girdle and anklets of live serpents. He is digambara (naked as space), He is the prince-lord (Kumaresha), and is very powerful. In his right hands he holds a staff with a skull on the top (khatvanga), a sword, a noose and a trident. His left hands hold the hourglass-shaped damaru drum, a skull, he shows the mudra bestowing boons and holds a snake in the last.

    The sattvik dhyana describes Vatuka Bhairava as resembling crystal, and as white as the kunda flower, wearing celestial clothing and nine gems, of a flaming appearance, adorned with anklets of bells, having a bright, beautiful and handsome face, with three eyes. He has two hands, one of which wields a trident (shula).

    The rajasik dhyana says he resembles the rising sun, with three eyes, with red limbs, in his four hands showing the sign bestowing boons, and holding a skull. In one of his left hands he holds a trident and with the other shows the mudra (hand gesture) dispelling fear. He has a blue, bejewelled throat, on his forehead is a fragment (kala) of the crescent moon and he wears clothes red as the banduka flower.

    The last, tamasik dhyana, has Vatuka Bhairava as stark naked, blue in colour, with reddened hair, with terrifying fangs, three eyes, anklets of jingling bells, and with eight arms.

    The yantra of Bhairava, in all his different forms, is similar to that shown below.



    From the yogic point of view, if an individual applies the Bhairava Mudra, he or she looks both outwards and inwards at the same time and is one with Shiva-Shakti. Bhairava is terrible, terrifying, because He represents pure consciousness, before which the kleshas (obstacles) and conditioning of an ignorant human being crumble.

    Source: http://www.shivashakti.com/bhairava.htm



  5. #5
    Jigar Guest

    Re: Bhairava

    Namaste AgniDeva,
    I find that Lord Shiva seems to be at a major confliction within himself issuing a self sense of eternal damnation among brothers.


    Om Kara,
    jigar

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    Re: Bhairava

    Quote Originally Posted by Jigar View Post
    I find that Lord Shiva seems to be at a major confliction within himself issuing a self sense of eternal damnation among brothers.
    Namaste Jigar,

    The Divine fearful forms are rarely understood in the correct sense. This is one of the reasons why I created this thread. There are fearful forms used in all Hindu denominations. In Vaishnavism, the bhairava form of Vishnu is Ugra Narasimha. Similarly in Shaktism, there are Bhairavi or Kalaratri forms of Divine Mother. The fearful forms go to show that it is not only what we perceive as good and beautiful that is Divine, but so also what we perceive as ugly and bad. Death and dissolution are as much a part of the Divine, as are birth and creation. Otherwise, we will be left with God and the opposite of God (Satan); eternal salvation vs. eternal damnation. The benign and fierce representations are created on purpose to provide balance. One is meant to see the benign in the fierce forms, and the fierce in the benign forms. And then that which is beyond both benign and fierce. This is my opinion on the subject.

    OM Shanti,
    A.



  7. #7

    Re: Bhairava

    We need not bring in the abrahamic concepts of "eternal", "salavation" or "damnation" while discussing dharma. These dogmas make no sense here. Fearful or wrathful are not qualities of Atman but the way the mortal bhakta sees God. The wrath is only against avidya.

    Bhairava essentially is the form of Shiva in the Tantras. He is a great buddhist deity as well. I am not sure whether it was the nAstika who worshipped him first or it is the other way round. I'm sure both sides will have claims and refutations on this. In Astika world Bhairava is an aspect of Shiva who is all and beyond all. In the nAstika world bhairava holds much elevated position than Gods including Shiva.

    As far as I know Siva as Bhairava is integral to the worship of goddess in any one of the 10 maha vidya forms. Each maha vidya has her Bhairava representing the static aspect of the shakti (Mahakala bhairava with kAli etc). It is said the worship of a mahavidya without worshipping her bhairava results in great sin and can only bring forth kama siddhi. Moksha is impossible without worshipping bhairava or shiva aspect of the shakti.

    I'm not sure, I will ask Agnideva to shed more light on this. Is Bhairava worshiped by Saivas also as fearful form of Shiva?? I though for saivas there are other fearful forms of shiva like the vedic rudras and the famous Sharabha Murthi Siva, as also his various Tandav poses. I have never heard Saivas using the term bhairava which is very much tantric.
    What is Here, is Elsewhere. What is not Here, is Nowhere.

  8. #8
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    Re: Bhairava

    Quote Originally Posted by sm78 View Post
    I'm not sure, I will ask Agnideva to shed more light on this. Is Bhairava worshiped by Saivas also as fearful form of Shiva?? I though for saivas there are other fearful forms of shiva like the vedic rudras and the famous Sharabha Murthi Siva, as also his various Tandav poses. I have never heard Saivas using the term bhairava which is very much tantric.
    Namaste Singhi,

    There is confusion over this issue, and that is the main reason I started this thread. Bhairava is well known to Shaivas, and is worshipped by Shaivas as well. However, sometimes there is a tendency among some southern Shaivas to say that Bhairava is not Shiva, but a guardian of Shiva kshetras, Shiva temples, etc. Other Shaivas say that Bhairava is Shiva Himself, who manifested in the fearful form when Brahma claimed that He found the upper end of the Jyotirlingam (Infinite Column of Light). Then, there are the Kashmir Shaivas who worship Bhairava as Shiva Himself, and use the 64 Bhairava Agamas, spoken by Shiva in the form of Bhairava unto Shakti as Bhairavi. Southern Shaivas have also used some of the Bhairava Agamas in the past, most notably the Vijnana Bhairava. So, I don’t believe the opinion that Bhairava is not Shiva. The Kauai Adheenam acknowledges that Bhairava is a fearful form of Shiva.

    The eight Bhairavas you mention are also part of Shaivite belief, and the guardians of the eight directions, especially in the city of Kashi. They are said to be forms of Mahakala-Bhairava, who is the center.

    In Saiva Siddhanta, one of the 25 forms of Shiva is called Kalari (Destroyer of Time) or Kalasamhara-Murti. I have a theory that Kalasamhara-Murti, Mahakaleshvara, and Mahakala-Bhairava are just different names for the same form.

    OM Shanti,
    A.
    Last edited by Agnideva; 19 April 2007 at 01:49 PM.



  9. #9

    Re: Bhairava

    Namaste Agnideva,

    wow~~~
    your Bhairava picture is same to Dharmapala in Tantra Buddhism or Vajrayana, is so like the wrathful manifestasion from Buddha and Bodhisattva, look like Mahakala!

    in Buddhism, Mahakala is manifestasion of Avalokitesvara.

    This is Mahakali ! She is protector of Syamatara


  10. #10
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    Re: Bhairava

    Namaste Shian,
    Quote Originally Posted by shian View Post
    your Bhairava picture is same to Dharmapala in Tantra Buddhism or Vajrayana, is so like the wrathful manifestasion from Buddha and Bodhisattva, look like Mahakala!

    in Buddhism, Mahakala is manifestasion of Avalokitesvara.
    Thanks for the pictures .

    In Hindu Dharma, Mahakala-Bhairava is a form of Shiva. The descriptions of Avalokiteshvara in Buddhism is very similar to Shiva (and sometimes Vishnu) in Hinduism. I noticed this especially in the Nilakantha Dharani you posted before.

    Are there different forms of Mahakala (Bhairava) in Buddhism? Do you know of a Diety called Vajra-Bhairava?

    In Tantric Hinduism, there are generally 8 forms of Bhairava (sometimes 64 = 8 x 8). They are manifestations of Mahakala-Bhairava, and guardians of the eight directions, especially in the holy city of Kashi (Varanasi).

    North ~ Bhishana Bhairava
    Northeast ~ Samhara Bhairava
    East ~ Asitanga Bhairava
    Southeast ~ Ruru Bhairava
    South ~ Chanda Bhairava
    Southwest ~ Krodhana Bhairava
    West ~ Unmatta Bhairava
    Northwest ~ Kapali Bhairava

    The center is Mahakala-Bhairava, who is Shiva, Himself.


    Summarized from: http://tinyurl.com/yv9g4f

    OM Shanti,
    A.



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