How to Meditate Upon Lord Shiva?
Saguna meditation is meditation on a form. An archer first aims at a gross, big
object. Then he takes up a medium object. Finally, he shoots at very small and minute
objects. Even so, one should take to Saguna meditation to start with, and when the
mind is trained and disciplined well, he can have Nirakara, Nirguna meditation.
Saguna meditation is meditation on a concrete object. Saguna meditation is peculiarly
pleasing the Bhakta, who loves to gaze on the peculiar form of his Ishta. Saguna
Upasana removes Vikshepa. For three or six months, practise Trataka on Siva’s picture.
Meditate on the mental picture of the Murti from half to two hours only in the Trikuti
(space between the eyebrows). See and feel that the Lord is present in every object
of the universe. When you meditate, mentally repeat the Mantra of the Devata, ‘Om
Namah Sivaya’; think of the attributes of the Deity such as omnipresence, omnipotence
and omniscience. Feel that Sattvic qualities from the Ishtam flow towards you. Feel
that you possess these Sattvic qualities. This is Sattvic or Suddha Bhavana. You
will have Darsana of your Ishtam in one or two years, if you are sincere in your
Sadhana. Follow this plan. This will help concentration. Move the mind on the various
parts of the Murti, the picture or idol of Lord Siva, and meditate. Sit upon your
usual Asana. Repeat His name and think of His attributes like bliss, radiance, love,
etc., gazing at His picture all the while. Then enthrone Him in the lotus of your
heart or between your eyebrows amidst a blazing light. Now mentally think of His
lotus-feet, offering your devout salutations. Take the mind to the elephant-skin
worn round the waist, then to the necklace of Rudraksha beads, adorning His chest,
and the beautiful blue hue of His throat (Nilakantha), serene countenance, radiating
the majestic aura of profound meditations, the indrawn half-closed meditative eyes,
the mysterious third eye in the centre of the forehead. Next take the mind up to
the matted locks, the cool crescent moon, and the sacred Ganga sprouting from the
Jata. Rotate your mind on the trident (Trisula) in one hand, and then, the Damaru,
in the other. Run your mind over the whole form till you complete all the details.
Then fix your mind either on the face or upon the starting point (feet). Repeat
the entire process again and again, as many times as you can. By constant practice,
you will ultimately be established in meditation and have communion with Siva.
This is meditation on Lord Siva, in His all-pervasive, unmanifested aspect, as the
Supreme Para Brahman. In this form of meditation, you meditate on Lord Siva as the
Supreme Brahman without form, attributeless, eternal, infinite. Meditate on Him
as the Suddha, Satchidananda, Vyapaka Atman; Nitya, Suddha, Siddha, Buddha, Mukta,
eternally free Brahman; an unlimited Ocean of Pure Consciousness. Now, identify
yourself with this transcendental Svarupa of Siva. Feel that you are Chaitanya,
Akhanda, Paripurna, Ekarasa, Santa, Unchanging Existence.
Every atom, every molecule, every nerve, vein, artery, should powerfully vibrate
with these ideas. Lip-repetition of ‘Sivoham’ will not produce much benefit. It
should be through heart, head and soul. This feeling should be kept up continuously.
Negate the body-idea while repeating Sivoham mentally. When you chant Sivoham feel:
Infinity I am
All light I am
All joy I am
All glory I am
All power I am
All knowledge I am
All Ananda I am
Meditate on the above ideas constantly. Constant effort with zeal and enthusiasm,
is an indispensable requisite. Repeat mentally the above ideas incessantly. You
Source: Reproduced, with the general permission, from Lord Siva and His Worship,
WWW edition 2000, By Sri Swami Sivananda © The Divine Life Trust Society