Lord Shiva Within the Trinity
Lord Shiva is “the transformer” within the Trimurti which consists of Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu (The Protector) and Lord Brahmma (The Creator).
Lord Shiva in Shaivism
In Shaivism/Saivism tradition, Lord Shiva is the Supreme being who creates, protects and transforms the universe. In the goddess tradition of Hinduism called Shaktism, the goddess is described as supreme, yet Lord Shiva is revered along with Vishnu and Brahma. A goddess is described as the energy and creative power (Shakti) in the form Goddess Parvati the equal complementary partner of Lord Shiva. The Lord Shiva is one of the five equivalent deities in Panchayatana pooja/puja of the Smarta tradition of Hinduism. The other 4 deities are Lord Vishnu, Goddess Lakshmi or Durga, Lord Surya and an Ishta Devata (i.e., devotee’s personal preference either Lord Ganesh or Lord Muruga or Skanda).
Lord Shiva is considered as shapeless, limitless, transcendent and unchanging absolute Brahman and the primal Aatman (i.e., soul/self) of the universe.
Lord Shiva Faces
Lord Shiva has many faces (benevolent and fearsome). In benevolent aspects, he is described as an omniscient Yogi who lives an ascetic life on Mount Kailash as well as a family man with wife Goddess Parvati and his two children, Lord Ganesha and Lord Kartikeya or Muruga.
In his fierce aspects, he is often shown slaying demons. Lord Shiva is also known as Adiyogi Shiva regarded as the patron god of yoga, meditation and arts.
Lord Shiva Iconography
The main iconography attributes of Lord Shiva are:
- the third eye on his forehead
- the serpent around his neck
- the adorning crescent moon
- the holy river Ganga flowing from his matted hair
- the trishula as his weapon
- the damaru.
Lord Shiva is usually worshiped in the aniconic form of Lingam (aka Shiva Lingam). Lord Shiva is revered widely across India, Nepal and Sri Lanka.
Here is the collection of Lord Shiva Images, Pictures, Photos and HD Wallpapers categorized by various groups.