नमः शङ्कराय च मयस्कराय च

namaḥ śaṅkarāya ca mayaskarāya ca (8:10)


Salutations to the One, who is causing prosperity, auspiciousness and benefits and to the One, who is giving enjoyment and pleasure.


Śaṅkarā is the most commonly used name for Shiva. Śaṅkara is used in three places (three nāma-s) in Shiva Sahasranāma (440, 599 and 600). Śaṅkara also means the one who gives happiness not only in this world, but also in the other world (heaven).

śruti smriti purāṇām ālayam karunālayam

namāmi bhagavadpādam śaṅkaraṁ lokaśankaraṃ

श्रुति स्म्रिति पुराणाम् आलयम् करुनालयम्

नमामि भगवद्पादम् शङ्करं लोकशन्करं

Meaning of the above verse:

I prostrate to Lord Śiva, who causes welfare to the universe, who is the repository of the divine Knowledge of Veda-s, Upaniṣad-s and texts of mythology and who is the embodiment of mercy.

नमःशिवाय च शिवतराय च

namaḥśivāya ca śivatarāya ca (8:11)

(The famous Shiva pañcākṣari mantra “namaḥśivāya” is placed at the centre of Yajur Veda.)

(How to pronounce Om namaḥśivāya)


Salutations to the one who is eternally auspicious, propitious, gracious, favourable, benign, kind, benevolent, friendly and dear.


The final phase of the worshipper is being portrayed through namaḥśivāya.  The merger of the feminine energy known as kuṇḍalinī before its final union with the masculine principle known as Śiva, indicating the culmination of spiritual practice. Śivatara means most prosperous or fortunate. Śiva means the purity of the highest order.  Māṇḍūkya Upaniṣad (7) says, “prapañcopaśamam śāntam śivam” which means the total cessation of the world as such, the sum total of that is good, one without a second is the Brahman (it means to say that śivam is all that is good).  Mahānārāyaṇa Upaniṣad (21) also says “May the Supreme, who is the ruler of all knowledge, controller of all created beings, the preserver of the Vedas and the one overlord of Hiraṇyagarbha, be gracious (Śivaḥ) to me.”

नमस्तीर्थ्याय च कूल्याय च

namastīrthyāya ca kūlyāya ca (8:12)


Salutations to the One who is in the form of sacred waters and in the banks of such sacred rivers.


He purifies in the form of sacred rivers like Ganges. In the banks of these sacred rivers there are many Shiva temples. As holy water, He purifies His devotees and remaining in the sanctum sanctorum in the form of Liṅga, He blesses and showers His Grace on His devotees.

नमः पार्याय चावार्याय च नमः पार्याय च अवार्याय च

namaḥ pāryāya cāvāryāya ca (namaḥ pāryāya ca avāryāya ca) (8:13)


Salutations to the One, who is on both the banks of a river.


He prevails in both the banks of a river. One bank is the material world and the other bank is the spiritual world, which leads to Liberation. River is saṁsāra (transmigration). If we reach one side of the bank by swimming across the river of saṁsāra, we are Liberated and if we reach the other side of the river, we continue to transmigrate. In both the places, He alone prevails.

नमः प्रतरणाय चोत्तरणाय च (नमः प्रतरणाय च उत्तरणाय च)

namaḥ prataraṇāya cottaraṇāya ca (namaḥ prataraṇāya ca uttaraṇāya ca) (8:14)


Salutations to the One who makes us to transcend from sins and rebirths.


Prataraṇa also means increasing the life span. Uttaraṇa means crossing river and contextually it refers to crossing the pains of saṁsāra. He extends the life span of His devotees and make them to experience all their karmas in this birth itself and once their karmas are exhausted, He Liberates them. Śivānanda Laharī (Lahari means rise up as if in waves) (verse 61) describes devotion.  “The way needle seeks magnet, the way creeper seeks tree, the way river unites with ocean and the way the mind seeks the lotus feet of Śiva are called devotion”. Viveka cūḍāmaṇi (verse 31) says that “amongst things conducive to liberation, devotion alone holds the supreme place.  The seeking after one’s real nature is designated as devotion. Others maintain that the inquiry into the truth of one’s own Self is devotion”.

{Further reading on devotion: Brahman can be realised either through bhakti mārg (the path of devotion) or through jñāna mārg (the path of knowledge). In devotional path, the divine grace is an essential factor.  While pursuing the path of knowledge, self-effort is primary.  In bhakti one affirms this world, affirms himself and his life and work with a devoted remembrance of his Iśta devata.  Among all the disciplines of worship, bhakti is considered as supreme.  The desperate longing and intense love for Iṣṭa devata is known as bhakti. The intense search for our true nature is bhakti. The one noticeable, yet significant difference between bhakti and jñāna is the difference in the perception of the Supreme.   In bhakti one perceives Iṣṭa devata and in jñāna he looks for the formless Brahman.}

नम आतार्याय चाऽऽलाद्याय च (नम आतार्याय च आलाद्याय च)

nama ātāryāya cā''lādyāya ca (nama ātāryāya ca ālādyāya ca ) (8:15)


Salutations to the One, who is in the form of those who are attached to the material world and those in the form of devotees seeking liberation.


Those who are attached to the material world do so due to their effect of karmas. When karmas are about to be exhausted, devote pursues jñāna mārga to attain liberation. Kṛṣṇa says, (Bhagavad Gīta V.12) “Offering the fruits of actions to God, the karmayogi attains everlasting peace in the shape of God-realisation; whereas he who works with a selfish motive, being attached to the fruit of actions through desire, gets tied down.”

Thus Rudra makes a person to transmigrate or to make him liberated subject to the law of karma and the path they pursue.

नमः शष्प्याय च फेन्याय च

namaḥ śaṣpyāya ca phenyāya ca (8:16)


Salutations to Him who is in the form of tender grass on the banks of rivers and to the One, who is in the form of foam in the rivers.


Tender grass could be referring to kuśa (darbha) grass grown on the banks of the rivers. When river water flows with force, we can observe foam. His omnipresence is emphasised.

नमः सिकत्याय च प्रवाह्याय च॥

namaḥ sikatyāya ca pravāhyāya ca || (8:17)


Salutations to the One, who is in the form of sand (in the rivers) and in the form of streams.


Sand conveys that He is present in insentient things also. Waterfalls and streams cleanses our body with the flowing water. Salutations to Him.

End of anuvāka 8