Adi Sankaracharya’s -Soundarya Lahari-Prana Kishore
(0ne page version to know the concept)
The Soundarya Lahari meaning “Waves Of Beauty” is a famous literary work in Sanskrit believed to be written by sage Pushpadanta and Adi Shankara. Some believe the first part “Ananda Lahari” was etched on mount Meru by Ganesha himself (or by Pushpadanta). Sage Goudapada, the teacher of Shankar’s teacher Govinda Bhagavadpada, memorised the writings of Pushpadanta which was carried down to Adi Shankara. Its hundred and three shlokas (verses) eulogize the beauty, grace and munificence of GoddessParvati / Dakshayani, consort of Shiva.
Adi Shankara with disciples, drawing byRaja Ravivarma, 1904
The Sri Chakra, frequently called the Sri Yantra.
Soundarya Lahari has 100 Slokas or verses
Verses 1-41 is called Ananda Lahari-
(waves of Happiness )are the original work of Lord Shiva, shedding great light on the ancient rituals of Tantra, Yantra and various powerful Mantras. Describes the mystical experience of the union of Shiva and Shakti and related phenomena. In fact, it opens with the assertion that Only when Shiva is united with Shakti does he have the power to create.
Verses 42 -100 are called Soundarya Lahari
–( Waves of Beauty )composed by Adi Shankara himself, which mainly focuses on the appearance of the Goddess. This stanza till the end describes the great mother Shakthi from head to foot.These are supposed to be composed by the Adhi Sankara himself.
How can we use Soundarya Lahari in our life ? Its also a Q and A on life
The Soundarya Lahari is not only a poem. It is a tantra textbook, giving instructions on Puja and offerings, many yantras, almost one to each shloka; describes tantric ways of performing devotion connected to each specific shloka; and details the results ensuing therefrom.
History behind Soundarya Lahiri
once Adi Shankara visited Kailash to worship Shiva and Parvathi. There, the Lord gave him a manuscript containing 100 verses which described the many facets of the Goddess, as a gift to him. While Shankara was returning after visiting Kailash, Nandi stopped him on the way. He snatched the manuscript from him, tore it into two, took one part and gave the other to Shankara. Shankara, desolate, ran to Shiva and narrated the incident to him. Shiva, smiling, commanded him to retain the 41 verses with him as the initial part of the 100 verses and then, write an extra 59 verses in praise of the Goddess himself. Thus, verses 1 – 41 are the original work of Lord Shiva, shedding great light on the ancient rituals of Tantra, Yantra and various powerful Mantras. The remaining verses, i.e. 42-100 are composed by Adi Shankara himself, which mainly focuses on the appearance of the Goddess