Shiva is beauty, benevolence, and truth. To understand Shiva you have to understand the creation – but can you ever fathom it? Sri Sri Ravi Shankar says, “One who is not amazed by the magnificence of this creation, his eyes are not yet open. Once your eyes open, they close and this is called meditation.” It takes you to the space of Shiva Tattva.There are three types of space – the Bhutakash, Chittakash and Chidakash. The Bhutakash is the physical space in which all matter exists. The universe is made up of five elements namely earth, water, fire, air and ether. When we chant Om Namah Shivaya, we essentially honour these five elements that make-up the whole creation. The five elements are the Shiva principle itself in Bhutakash and are all-pervading in the physical space. Shiva is the non-judgemental, all-accepting innocence and is called ‘Bholenath’ or the ‘innocent Lord’. For example, the Ganga accepts flowers that you offer and also the garbage that is thrown in it. There is no judgement.The river remains true to its nature irrespective of circumstances.Being in your nature is being in Shiva Tattva. However, for the water to be useful, it needs to be kept clean and unpolluted. Here, we have to use our intellect to understand what is useful and what is not.The mind, intellect, and memory belong to the second type of space – Chittakash. This is intermediate or inner space, where all thoughts and emotions float about. This is not a physical measurable space. We do not say we need two square metres of space for our thoughts. Yet it can fill our mind completely. The mind oscillates between the past and future, likes and dislikes; the intellect is caught between good and bad, right and wrong judgements. Our ancient seers attributed challenging circumstances that come up in life and mind of an individual, to the impact of the grahas, planets. Once again, chanting Om Namah Shivaya takes care of malefic effects as Shiva is said to rule over all the planets.Tandav, the dance of Shiva, is state when whole creation is dancing. Sometimes, it is Rudra Tandav when there are floods, earthquakes and volcanoes erupting.Bhanumathi Narasimhan
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