Shiva, 'the destroyer' among the Hindu trinity (of gods), is depicted in many contradictory manners. He is an ascetic who wears animal skin, his body smeared with ashes. Contradictory to his wild nature, he is also depicted as having a family, with a beautiful wife and two children. There are many more such varied representations of Shiva, the most prominent of these being the Linga and the Nataraja. The author, Devdutt Pattanaik, introduces the readers to these varied aspects and representations, and then sets about interpreting them. He explains the different anomalies and conflicts in beliefs, things that might puzzle people who are not familiar with Hindu culture and religious symbolism.
The author has taken up seven aspects of Shiva worship from Hinduism, which are nothing but seven different forms of Shiva worship. Shiva is worshipped in many forms, as the Lingeshwara, Kala Bhairava, Sundareshwara, Shankara, and Nataraja, and the author goes into each form and analyzes what it represents. He also discusses Shivas two sons, Ganesha and Karthikeya. He goes into the symbolism behind these forms and provides his interpretation. This book serves as a nice introduction to Shaivite concepts and explains many stories, both known and unknown, the symbolism, and rituals and the reasons behind Hindu worship.
©2011 Devdutt Pattanaik (P)2012 Devdutt Pattanaik/ booksTALK audiobooks & Westland
Artist, Yogi, lover of strange books
If you are into yoga, meditation or are seeking to grow spiritually you need to listen to this book. I spend a lot of time reading and listening to eastern spirituality books and a lot of it is the same thing said different ways. This is actually different, it goes into depth about some ideas that were touched on in my yoga teacher training. So glad I found this!!!
It was a great listen, and taught me a lot about Shiva and Hinduism
Compared to other audiobooks on Hinduism and Eastern philosophy, this one focuses on the symbolism and the meaning behind Shiva and Shaivism, as opposed to somebody giving their personal interpretations.
The narration was clear
I would say the benefit of this book is that you can listen to it in several sittings without feeling like you lost what is being said.
I just really enjoyed this, after finishing this I had a lot better understanding of shiva.
Growing up in India in a typical Hindu family I thought I knew enough about Shiva. I was wring, this book provides a lot of details with a very catchy stories. Stories that you can share with kids to teach them more about Shiva. I end up listening this twice, first to just get the stories and second time to understand the meaning and reasoning described for rituals/traditions.
Highly recommend it.
I learned so much about my culture and religion listening to this and also learned the vast symbolism contained in mythology
"Provides an Excellent understanding of Hinduism"
After a lot of hunting, I found this audio book, which provides a very good understanding of the metaphors in Hinduism. What Hinduism is and why it is the way it is.
Well pleased that I bought and heard it. I will probably have to hear it a number of times tidily grasp all the concepts explained.
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