Author Topic: What is the correct interpretation of the Shiva linga according to Ramana?  (Read 3912 times)

Kicsi108

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Just to clear any misunderstanding: I come from a western cultural background and the sources I can read are mainly written by western Indologist, thinkers. So my next questions are honest and raised to find out the truth and I have NO intention to hurt anyone's beliefs, feelings etc.
 
So here are my honest questions:

Is the Shiva lingam the phallus of Shiva?

It does sound very strange for me with Western cultural background...Western people say that symbolizes life force, creation, etc. But yet ... I can hardly take this interpretation even if this is symbolical and sacred etc.

Is the Shiva lingam a Pillar of Light?

I am more able to identify and take it as that. It is fire, light destructing and renewing life at the same time and as a pillar it connects "heaven" and "earth" if I can use those words to try to describe it.

What does Ramana teach about it? Can you refer me to words, poems about it by Ramana?
How am I to interpret that symbol within hinduism, in that culture?


I understand English but no Sanskrit, Hindi or Tamil.

Thank you for your kind help.

avadhut1972

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Re: What is the correct interpretation of the Shiva linga according to Ramana?
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2012, 05:07:58 AM »
Wow! Maybe this is too heavy for a spiritual tourist. No offence but maybe you should do some reading first..

Kicsi108

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Re: What is the correct interpretation of the Shiva linga according to Ramana?
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2012, 09:59:57 AM »
Wow! Maybe this is too heavy for a spiritual tourist. No offence but maybe you should do some reading first..


I have done more reading...and I have been faced with these. That's why I posted these questions.
Could you refer me to specific sources - to do reading? Thank you. :-)

Subramanian.R

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Re: What is the correct interpretation of the Shiva linga according to Ramana?
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2012, 11:31:08 AM »
Dear kicsi108,

1. Yes. The Linga is a phallic symbol. The base (avudai) is representing female organ. This can be understood easily, However,
please note that this conceptualization has been done by Vedic Rishis, who have transcended the notions of man and woman!   

2. Siva Lingam also represents form/formlessness. It is form because it is cylindrical. It is formless because there are no
forms of a personal God, with eyes, nose, mouth, ears etc, 

3. This Lingam gave birth to conceptualization of form-ful Siva in eight forms. These can be either five elements, Purusha,
Moon and Sun.

4. The 8 forms can also be interpreted as: 1) Nataraja, dancing Siva. 2) Kalyana Sundarar, in marriage pose with Uma.\
3) Somaskanda - Siva-Uma with Skanda. 4) Bhikshatanar - as an alms seeker. 5) Hari and Hara - Siva who came with Hari,
in the story of Daruka forest rishis. 6) Dakshinamurti - the silent guru. 7) Somasekhara - the one wearing crescent moon
and 8) Kapali, the one wearing the skulls of Brahma and Vishnu. 

The above is described in Tirumandiram of Saint Tirumoolar.
And also in Umapati Sivam's Kuchitanghristavam.

Arunachala Siva.
 
   
   

avadhut1972

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Re: What is the correct interpretation of the Shiva linga according to Ramana?
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2012, 01:05:39 PM »
Dear Subramanian ji,
Thank you for the clear and succinct answer.
I tried to draft an answer but regrettably mine exceeded a 1000 words. Like Abe Lincoln's letter which began- "I apologise for the long letter but I did not have the time to write a shorter one!"; I recognise the amount of material you have condensed in your sutra-like answer.
My regards
« Last Edit: September 05, 2012, 03:28:03 PM by avadhut1972 »

Subramanian.R

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Re: What is the correct interpretation of the Shiva linga according to Ramana?
« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2012, 02:14:30 PM »
Dear kicsi108 and avadhut1972,

The ideas I have given about Siva Lingam are based on Tirumoolar's Tirumandiram. Sri Bhagavan however, never mentioned
about the phallic symbol in His conversations. He said Siva or Sivam is Consciousness and it is Effulgence. This can be experienced
with in as a great flame or outside as a Guru or Siva in the guise of a guru. Sri Bhagavan also considered Arunachala Hill as
Atma or the Self. By looking at Arunachala, in the way one should look at It, one would realize the Atma within.

As regards Siva as Effulgence, He describes it in Verse 4 of Arunachala Ashtakam. This verse reads as:

To search for God ignoring You, who stand as Being and shine as Awareness is like, looking, lamp in hand, for darkness.
In order to reveal Yourself at last as Being and Awareness, You dwell in various forms in all religions. You dwell in various
forms in all religions. If still there are people who fail to see You whose Being is Awareness, they are no better than the
blind who do not know the Sun. O mighty Hill Aruna, peerless Jewel, stand and shine, One without a second, the Self within
my Heart.

Arunachala Siva.               

avadhut1972

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Re: What is the correct interpretation of the Shiva linga according to Ramana?
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2012, 02:33:44 PM »
Dear Subramanian ji,
Thank you for the explanation. I find it childishly annoying when people refer to the lingam as "phallic symbolism", as if that term could possibly explain the concept of Siva. Therefore I thank you for such a clear, succinct, yet comprehensive answer.
It is far superior to my response, which was both verbose and a little petulant in attitude.
My regards
« Last Edit: September 05, 2012, 03:27:37 PM by avadhut1972 »

deepa

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Re: What is the correct interpretation of the Shiva linga according to Ramana?
« Reply #7 on: September 05, 2012, 11:01:34 PM »
Kicsi108,
Please note that the phallus was a very-very ancient symbol across many civilizations, not just in India, as you see below.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phallus
If the Christian thought and Anglo-saxon ideas had not interfered, we may still be seeing them in Rome/Nordics, etc.

After all, what bigger miracle was there than creation of a being? In times of severe mortality, fertility was probably the most critical need.

However, as avadhut1972 says, Shiva is more than just that symbol. Thanks, Sri. Subramanian for the clear definitions.
Deepa
« Last Edit: September 05, 2012, 11:11:18 PM by deepa »

Subramanian.R

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Re: What is the correct interpretation of the Shiva linga according to Ramana?
« Reply #8 on: September 06, 2012, 02:12:33 PM »
Dear avadhut, deepa,

When Siva went to Daruka forest rishis to teach them Jnana Marga (Upadesa Saram background), the rishis thought that
their wives got infatuated with that strange beggar because of his showing the male organ. Siva immediately plucked the
male organ and threw it off. The wives of Rishis got infatuated with Siva not because of his male organ but because of
his arresting beauty in all glory!


(Kunjitanghri Stavam, Umapati Sivam)

 
Arunachala Siva.