64 Forms of Siva – Bhikshatana Murti

Often confused with Bhairava, who had Brahma’s 5th head stuck on his hand, this Murti is different.

Said to have the attractive qualities of a Koti Manmatha, it was a roopa cherished by the Kapalikas.

Once the Great Rishis of Darukavana, having mastered the Ritualistic aspects of Yagyas etc did not feel the need to worship thinking Karma alone was enough.

With Pride blinding them, and also influencing others around them on their atheistic ways, Siva came down in this roopa to curb their arrogance.

While Vishnu came down as Mohini and went toward the Rishis, Siva came down as a naked mendicant and went toward the Rishi Patnis.

The rishis lost all sense of themselves going after Mohini , while the Rishi Patnis, lost all propriety , following the wandering mendicant in a hypnotic trance, not even caring that their very clothes were coming off as they went after him.

When the Rishis , saw what was happening to their wives, they in complete rage , did abhichara yagyas and called forth various shaktis to attack the naked mendicant.

A tiger , which he skinned and wore around him , a snake , which he tamed and wore on his neck , and finally an asura , apasmara , whom he tamed and stood on.

Everything they manifested, from their Karmakanda, ritualistic brilliance, became merely ornaments and playthings for the Lord. Realising their mistake , the Rishis realized who it was in front of them, and sought forgiveness.

This roopa, has a deer on his side, reaching out to Siva’s hand which holds a blade of Durva grass, another hand holding the Damru , Trishula over his shoulders , and a Kapala ( begging bowl ) on the other.

A very esoteric form , that has multiple layers. This form is also said to give back , all that one has lost.

– Sivarpanam

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