Friday, April 20, 2007

The Last Word

The Shivastaka is an octet of hymns in praise of Shiva that is said to have been composed by Sankara himself. Multiple versions of this octet are extant today but unfortunately these versions differ from each other and so we do not know which is the original.

While most variations are minor, the eighth stanza is a source of dismay because in each version it is not only different but in all cases the cadence and metre of this last stanza is distinctly at odds with the cadence and metre of the other seven. This leads us to believe that Sankara’s original last stanza is irretrievably lost and so each commentator has tried to plug the gap with his or her own version of what the eighth stanza could have looked like !

Without being critical of the attempts of others before me, I take the liberty of creating my own. Should the reader be comfortable with the words and cadence he is welcome to use it to complete the octet.

sat byaakula sevaka ranjanakam
sadhu sadhaka nayana pradanakaram
shringara-ghana shriyantra rupam
pranamami shivam shivakalpatarum

2 comments:

usha banerji said...

Do you know the translation of the first seven verses of the Shiva ashtaka stotra?

leprechaun said...

Oh! but what's the translation of the stanza you wrote?

Finally, may be a new physics is emerging... right now! Unfortunately, there is not an English site yet, just this blog written in Portuguese:

Outra FĂ­sica

But the point is that Intelligence rules and this Universe is so beautiful and subtle!

We can not comprehend it, except through a loving approach... Life is our very coach! :)

And such peace lies within...

Rui leprechaun

(...Jai to Kali, Mother Queen! :))