Prayers to different Gods inside a Temple of Lord Shiva
Translation of prayers ,
( I got these prayers from a book published by Giri traders and my grateful acknowledgements to them . I also have translated those prayers and added some notes on etiquettes to be observed inside the Shiva Temple .I would be grateful if the readers can point out the mistakes I have committed as my knowledge in this aspect is only peripheral. )
You have to enter the temple of Lord Shiva with a clean body and mind .Before entering the temple outside the flag pole offer salutations to the God by prostrating on the ground .(This should never be done in side the temple because you would be showing your back to some Gods.) If possible do three Pradakshinas outside the temple . Before you enter the Shiva temple touch the raised threshold with your right hand and enter in to the temple placing right foot first.The first God you will see is Lord Nandikeswara who is the Vahana of Lord shiva. Put the left middle and thumb on the two horns of the Nandi, with your right hand pet his tails and look through the horns of Nandi and see the shiva lingam. Then pray Nandfikeswara.Please also determine the proper method of Pradakshina in the Shiva temple you enter.Once you enter in side the temple, in some temples, the pradkshina stops at the point where Abhisheka Theertha is going out from the Shiva temple.Then the devotee turns back and walks in the opposite direction till they reach the same point.
1.Prayer before Nandikeswara
Nandikesa Mahabhaga , shiva dhyana parayna,
Uma Sankara sevartham anujnaan dathumarhasi
Oh Lord Nandi , Oh great one who always meditates on Lord Shiva,
I request your permission for the service of Lord Shiva and Goddess Uma.
After reciting this enter the temple , visit the following temples in the same order chanting the stotras given before the Gods.
2,Prayer before Lord Ganesa
(It is the custamory to knock with both your fists on the forehead before Lord Ganesa. Some people stand crossed leg, catch the ears and bobbing up nd down before Ganesa)
Omkaranilayam devam , Gajavakthram , chathurbujam,
Pichandila , maham Vandhe Sarva Vighnopasanthaye
Oh God who stays in OM , who has elephant’s head , who has four hands,
And who has a pot belly , I salute you and pray you to remove all obstructions .
3.Prayer before Lord Subrahmanya
Uma Komala hasthabja sambhavitha lalatakam ,
Hiranya kundalam vandhe Kumaram pushkarasrajam.
Salutation to the Lord wearing a lotus wreath , golden ear rings ,
Who has foreheads brought together by the lotus like hands of Goddess Uma.
4.Prayer before the Goddess
(In most of Shiva temples the Goddess would not be in same sanctum as Shiva but will have a separate temple)
Sarva mangala mangalye shive saravartha sadhike,
Sharanye tryambike devi Narayani namothuthe.
My salutations to the goddess Narayani,
Who is the auspiciousness of all auspiciousness ,
Who is consort of Shiva , Who grants all desires,
Who can be relied upon and who is the trinity of Goddesses.
5.Prayer before God Shiva
Anyadha Saranam nasthi, thwameva Saranam mama,
Thasmath Karunya bhavena Raksha Raksha Maheswara
I don’t have anybody to seek refuge,
Except thee , Oh great God,
So please have mercy upon me,
And protect me again and again.
6.Prayer before Dakshinamurthi
(Normally Dakshinamurthy temples would be in the inner periphery of the temple , with God facing south ,It would wonderful if you can sit and meditate before him as he is the teacher.)
Gurave Sarva LOkanam , bhishaje bhava roginam,
Nidhaye sarva vIdhyanam, Sri Dakshinamurthaye nama
Salutations to God Dakshinamurthy, who is the Guru of the entire world,
Who is the doctor to disease birth-death cycle and a treasure house of all knowledge.
7.Prayer to Goddess Durga
(Durga is a ferocious form of Goddess Parvathi in many cases facing the north.)
Sarva roope sarvesi, sarva shakthi samanvithe ,
Bhayebhya sthrahino devi, Durge Devi Namosthuthe
Oh Goddess who takes all forms, who is the Goddess of all, Who is filled with all powers,
Please save us from fear Oh Goddess, I salute to the Goddess Durga.
8.Prayer to Lord Nataraja
(E=when Nataraja , Shiva in the dancing pose is not the main God , he would be in the inner periphery.)
Krupa samaudram, sumukham, trinethram,
Jadadaharam, Parvathi vama bhagam,
Sada shivam, rudramanantha roopam,
Chidambaresam hrudhi bhavayami.
I meditate on that Lord of Chidambaram,
Who is the ocean of mercy,
Who has a pleasant mien,
Who has three eyes,
Who has matted locks,
Who keeps Parvathy on his left side,
Who is ever peaceful,
And who is limitless and angry.
9.Prayer to Lord Vishnu
(Most of the huge temples of Tamil Nadu also have temples for Lord Vishnu inside the Shiva temple
Sasankha chakram sakireeta kundalam sappeethavastram saraseruhekshanam,
Sahara vaksha sthala shobhi kousthubham namai Vishnum sirasa chaturbhujam
I bow before the God Vishnu,
Who has four arms,
Who has a conch and wheel in his hands,
Who wears a crown and ear globes,
Who wears yellow silks,
Who has lotus like eyes,
Who shines because of Kousthbha ,
Worn in his garlanded chest.
10,Prayer to Goddess Lakshm-Saraswathi
Sridevi amruthothbhutha, Kamala Chandra Shobhana ,
Vishnu pathni vaishnavi cha varoraha cha Sarngini,
Hari priya deva devi Mahalakshmi cha Sundari,
Bhashyadhi sarva shastrani ye cha anyai niyamasthadhaa,
Aksharani cha sarvani thwam thu devi namosthuthe.
Oh Goddess Lakshmi born along with Nectar, who sits on lotus , shines like moon,
Oh Consort of Lord Vishnu who worships Lord Vishnu, who has pretty hips and holds the Sarnga bow,
Oh Goddess dear to Hari, The goddess of all gods, The Mahalakshmi and the pretty one ,
Oh Goddess who is all the commentaries , all the Sasthras and all other Laws,
And who is also all the alphabets , You are our Goddess and I salute you.
11.Prayer to Chandikeswara
(It is common to clap hands or make sound with fingers before Chandikeswara temple,He is supposed to be the one who keeps the account of our visits to the Shiva temple. By making sound we are informing him that we have visited Lord Shiva, as Chandikeswara is always in deep meditation,Some people are of the opinion that we should only rub our hands before him , showing him that we are not even taking the dust from the temple.)
Neela kanda padambhoja parisphuritha manasa,
Shambho seva balam dehi Chamdeswara Namosthuthe.
Oh Lord who opens his mind to the lotus like feet of Lord Neelakanda,
Give us the results of Serving Lord Shiva and I salute you Chandeswara.
12.Prayer to Lord Bhairava
(This very angry looking God is a great devotee of Lord Shiva, who takes care of Lord Shiva and his temple.If his temple is there in a shiva temple , it is a must to go and salute him.)
Athikroora mahakaya Kalpantha dahanopama ,
BHairavaya namasthubhyam Anujnam Dhatum arhasi
I salute that Bhairava who is very cruel, who has a huge body,
Who is similar to the destruction at deluge, I need to take your permission.
13.Prayer to Lord Hanuman
(It is very rare to find a Hanuman temple in side the Shiva temple .Many devotees consider Hanuman as the son oof Lord Shiva also.)
BUdhirbalam dharyam nirbhayathwa marogatha.
Ajadyam vaak paduthwam cha Hanumath smaranath bhaveth
By meditating on Hanuman , you get intelligence , strength, courage ,
Fearlessness , freedom from disease, freedom from laziness and command of language .
14.Prayer to Nine planets
(Most of the Hindus firmly believe that it is the nine planets that cause problems or luchk to them. In most of the Shiva temples there would be a Navagaraha SAnnidhi where all the nine planets would be placed together. It is important to worship them before coming out of the temple)
Aarogyam dadadathu no Divakara, Chandro Yaso nirmalam,
Bhoothim Bhoomi sutha, Sudhamsu thanaya prajnam , Guru Gauravam,
Kavya KOmala vaak vilasamathulam , mandho mudham sarvadhaa.
Rahur Bahu balam , Virodha samanam Kethu Kulosyonnathim
The Sun gives us health , The moon pure fame ,
Mars gives us well being , Wisdom is given by Budha(son of moon)
Guru gives us respect, Shukra gives up pretty incomparable speech,
Saturn always gives us happiness, Rahu power and strength and Kethu the greatness of our family.
15.Sit in a place outside the main temple tell the following stotra addressed to the Shiva Ganas
Maha Bala pradha sarve, Shivajna paripalaka,
Maya samprathithaa yooyam Gachathwam Shiva sannidau.
Oh servants of Lord Shiva who are the very strong Pradhas,
Please go in front of Lord Shiva and inform him about all my prayers
16.Mediate on the two manthras given below for some time before leaving the temple
Mrityor mukshiya ma -mrtat.
We salute and respect,
Him who is naturally scented,
Him who looks after his devotees with mercy,
And him who has three eyes.
And pray and request,
To move us away from the catch of death,
Like the cucumber separated from its stalk,
And firmly put us in the path of salvation.
Eesana sarva Vidhyanam , Easwara sarva bhoothanam,
Brahma Shivo may asthu Sada shivam
Possessing all the knowledge , God of all beings ,
The Lord of Brahma , The Lord of Brahmanas,
Sadashiva exists as Shiva as well as Brahma
It is believed that , nothing belonging to the temple of Lord Shiva should be brought out of the Temple of Shiva. This includes the dust in the temple of Shiva