Shiva Marries to Power up
From the Top of Cold Mountain to City on Riverbank
When we read stories of Lord Shiva, there is a constant reference on how he is forced to get married. Shiva, the Hermit who sits peacefully on mount Kailasa and meditates is made to get married and come down the mountain to the “City of Kashi”. Why is these stories being told? Why does Shiva, the hermit, turn into Shankara, the Householder? Why does he get married? Why does he come down from the Mountain? If we observe very carefully, Shiva sits on the “Mountain Kailasa”, which is a large single stone mountain covered with ice, which is very cold. That means NO Vegetation grows there. No vegetation means there is nothing to eat. IF there is nothing to eat means, no life can exist there.
Later He marries and comes down from the mountain to “Kashi”, a City on the Riverbank, which is Warm, wet, fertile, full of vegetation, where there are markets, Crematoriums, and pleasure gardens. It is a place where life happens, trade happens, business happens and society grows.
This story is told again and again because the great value is given to the fact that while the Supreme hermit Shiva, also called Mahadev may not get hungry, but the people around him are hungry. Once Shiva comes down to Kashi, He becomes “ Vishwanatha”, Lord of the World/ Father of the world. He doesn’t get hungry, but he makes sure he stands up to feed others and fulﬁl others’ hunger around him.
We may not want Wealth( Lakshmi ) in our lives; We may not want Power ( Durga) in our lives; We may not have any “desire” or “wants” in our lives. However, there will always be people around us who seek this and depend on us for the same. So should we not care about them? Caring about others does not Manifest as an Obligation. It reveals Empathy. This Empathy is what the marriage of shiva represents.
SHIVA MARRIES TO POWER UP !1
Shiva marries and produces his children, Kartikeya and Ganesha. Observe how these two children are different from each other. When we observe we realize that both kids together take care of basic human needs. Ganesha, cute, cuddly, with his Rotund belly, embodies food, afﬂuence, abundance, and is closely associated with Lakshmi and therefore takes care of our hunger. For Ganesha, his mother is not Durga but Annapoorna, the Kitchen goddess. Kartikeya is the warlord of the gods. He is associated with brawn and stands with a spear. He protects us, just as his mother Durga protects us. So he is the one who guards us. Thus together, we see that Shiva’s children take care of basic human needs.
Shiva, the Supreme hermit who wants or desires nothing, is thus enlightened by the goddess and is made aware of other people’s hunger. This Concept of other people’s hunger is not there in “Swarga”. King of Swarga, Indra is not ever seen as someone who takes care of people. No one goes to him for help as they go to “Vishnu” or “Shiva”. He takes care of himself. He is enjoying himself in his “Indrasabha” with apsara and the “Gandharvas” and “Somrasa”. He is doest to take care of others. Therefore nobody worships Indra, while Everyone worships Shiva and Vishnu.