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Lord Shiva as Kalantaka

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Introduction to Lord Kalantaka

Kalantaka

Kalantaka is a powerful form of Shiva, the God of destruction. In this form, he remained true to his sacred role of destruction, but only that as Kalantaka, he destroyed none other than the most feared of destroyers, Lord Yama, the God of death himself.

Depiction of Lord Kalantaka

Kalantaka is often depicted as defeating or killing Yama (who personifies death) with his trident, in order to save his ardent devotee Markandeya.

Significance of Lord Kalantaka

Lord Yama is known as ‘Kala’ and ‘Antaka’ meaning the one who ends or destroys. Lord Shiva is referred to as Kala Antaka, as he annihilated none other than Yama to save his ardent devotee Markandeya from the clutches of death. Kalantaka is also known as Kalakala, Kalasamhara, Kalahara and also as Mrityunjaya. ‘Kala’ also means time, and Shiva remains to be the timeless Lord, who is beyond the limitations of time.

Mythology behind Lord Kalantaka

Legends speak highly about the greatness of Kalantaka. Sage Mrikandu had no issues for long, and he prayed earnestly to Shiva for a son. Pleased with his devotion, Shiva acceded to his request but left the sage with a difficult option of choosing between a virtuous son, who would live only until age 16 and a hundred worthless sons, who would live long. Mrikandu chose the good, but short-lived progeny, and Markandeya was born to him. The boy had the markings of a saintly soul right from the beginning, as he was brilliant, well versed in scriptures, performed all the rituals and led a godly life. However, time flew, and he began approaching 16 in due course. Here, it is also said that Lord Brahma taught him the Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra, the sacred hymn that can help conquer death.

Markandeya kept on praying to Shiva with immense faith, while his parents remained deeply fearful of his destiny. When Markandeya turned 16, messengers of death came to take his soul away, but could not approach this Shiva devotee. Then, Lord Yama himself had to descend on earth to take the saintly boy away as per his destiny, but the steadfast devotee surrendered himself entirely to Shiva and hugged his Lingam tightly. Yama threw his mighty noose at the boy to drag him away, but the fearful weapon, instead, fell on the Lingam itself.

Lord Shiva emerged out of the Lingam at once, kicked Yama, struck him with his trident and killed the God of death. Extremely pleased with Markandeya’s unwavering faith and devotion, he blessed him with immortality and eternal youthfulness, which enabled him to remain 16, forever. Thus, Markandeya lived and is still living, as a shining example of pure devotion. Lord Shiva who himself came running to the rescue of his ardent boy-devotee, became Kalantaka, demonstrating that the Lord would go to any extent to honor faith and sincerity.

However, the legend continues. With Yama killed, the world was thrown into chaos, with no deaths and the Earth was burdened with a tremendous load. Acceding to the appeal of the Gods, Shiva resurrected Yama, blessed him and advised him to proceed with his ordained responsibilities. It is believed that Yama would not touch Shiva devotees and on death, their souls would go directly to Kailash, the abode of Lord Shiva.

Blessings of Worshipping Lord Kalantaka

This incident of Shiva conquering Yama for protecting Markandeya is believed to have happened at Triprangode, Mallapuram district, Kerala, where Shiva is worshipped as Kalasamhara Murthy. This is also said to have taken place at Thirukkadaiyur in Tamilnadu (near Karaikal). Kalantaka worship is believed to relieve devotees from the fear of death and bless them with good health and long life. It has become a custom for many to celebrate their 60th birthday at Thirukkadaiyur, praying for a disease-free and good life.

Kalantaka worship

This incident of Shiva conquering Yama for protecting Markandeya is believed to have happened at Triprangode, Mallapuram district, Kerala, where Shiva is worshipped as Kalasamhara Murthy. This is also said to have taken place at Thirukkadaiyur in Tamilnadu (near Karaikal). Kalantaka worship is believed to relieve devotees from the fear of death and bless them with good health and long life. It has become a custom for many to celebrate their 60th birthday at Thirukkadaiyur, praying for a disease-free and good life.

Connect With The Divine

The sacred scriptures prescribe fire ceremony, Abishekam (hydration ceremony), Pooja/Archana (Light and Sound ceremony), Yantra and Mantra (special sounds) as the ways to offer your prayer to the divine. Out of these, fire ceremony is the most evolved spiritual technology on earth to connect with the divine beings. Participate in the remedial services to clear your karma and receive the blessings.

Shiva Homa (Fire Lab)

Lord Shiva is one among the Trinity, who is responsible for the destruction.

Shiva Yantra

Fear will no longer be a roadblock to your success with the Shiva Yantra.Assault all evil spirits that dominate your positivity.

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