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Soundarya Lahari Teachings

A collection of teachings from the Soundarya Lahari of Adi Shankaracharya.

Shiva is capable of action only when He is united with Shakti. Otherwise He is not capable of any movement. How can anyone, who has not accumulated enough punya, sing your praises or prostrate before you who is the object of worship even for the trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva? (Verse 1)

Brahma collects the fine dust from your lotus feet and performs the act of creation. Vishnu supports all the worlds thus created with his thousand heads (in the form of Adi Sesha) with great effort.  During the dissolution, Shiva converts the universe into fine ash and smears his body with it. (Verse 2)

You are the sun that illumines the inner darkness. To the ignorant, you are a blossoming flower, oozing streams of honey. To the poor, you are the jewel that grants everything one desires. And to those drowning in the ocean of death and rebirth, you are the tusk of the wild boar. (Verse 3)

O Devi! All the other gods, except you, show the ‘abhaya’ (palm raised up to indicate ‘no-fear’) and ‘varada’ (palm pointing down to indicate ‘granting wish’) signs by their hands.  You alone do not show these signs since your lotus feet, the refuge of all the worlds, are themselves capable of protecting all from fear and granting all wishes. (Verse 4)
Soundarya Lahari