Shiva Tandava Stotram is one of the important Shiva mantras. The stotram was written by Ravana, an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva. It was also chanted first by Ravana himself. Shaivites or Shiva devotees in the world strongly believe in the miraculous benefits of Shiva Tandava Stotram.
Legend behind Shiva Tandava Stotram
The legend behind Shiva Tandava Stotram goes like this: Ravana was one of the most important characters and antagoniats of the Ramayana story. He won over Kubera, Ravana’s step brother and the king of Lanka before Ravana. After this victory Ravana was doing a parikrama (circumambulation) of the entire universe on a Pushpak Viman (flying chariot). When he came near Mount Kailash, the chariot stopped itself and Ravana was disturbed by this incident. Mount Kailash asked Ravana to change his route as Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati were taking rest then. But Ravana didn’t pay heed to the words of Kailash and got annoyed with Kailash. He got off the chariot and thought that he would remove or lift the mountain by his hands. At that moment the entire universe felt intense turbulence as Kailash is believed to be the center of the earth as well as the sacred abode of Lord Shiva as per Hinduism.
In order to teach him a lesson, Lord Shiva pressed Mt. Kailash with his toe. So, the hands of Ravana began to crush between Kailash and the ground. He cried in immense pain and his crying sound could be heard in all three worlds ie Earth, Heaven(Swarg lok) and Hell (patal lok). The sound is called as RAV(crying in agony) in Sanskrit. Seeing the agony of Ravana, gods and Narad Muni felt pity and came to Ravana and suggested him to pray to Lord Shiva as he would surely forgive. Ravana was stuck in that condition for 14 days chanting various Shiva mantras (hymns). Then, on the evening of Pradosh kaal (around 1 hour before and after sunset), he chanted the Shiva Tandava stotram with immense devotion in perfect rhythm. His words were magical and could be heard across the universe. Everybody was mesmerized listening to Shiva Tandava Stotram praising Lord Shiva and describing Shiva’s infinite beauty and power.
In the end, Shiva came down and forgave him. After this incident, Shiva gave him the name “RAVANA”. Earlier he was known by Dashanan (ten-headed man) and after this, he was called Ravana. Shiva was very happy after listening to Tandava Stotram as it was beautifully composed in perfect rhythm by the most Vedic knowledgeable person named Ravana. He was blessed by Saraswati, the Goddess of knowledge. Shiva then gifted him “Chandrahas” sword. ‘Chandra’ means Moon and ‘Has’ means smile. The sword was in Moon crescent shape and indestructible. This is how Ravana composed and gave a sacred gift of Shiva Tandava Stotram to the universe.
Shiva Tandava Stotram Lyrics
Shiva Tandava Stotram is so long that I’ve given the stotram below without the purports of its lyrics. I would like to discuss it in detail in another article next. Along with the lyrics, the audio-visual content of this stotram is also given below for our readers.
Drushadvichitratalpayor bhujanga mauktikasrajor Garishtharatnaloshthayoh suhrudvipakshapakshayoh Trushnaravindachakshushoh prajamahimahendrayoh Sama pravartayanmanah kada sadashivam bhaje
Kada nilimpanirjhari nikujnjakotare vasanh Vimuktadurmatih sada shirah sthamajnjalim vahanh Vimuktalolalochano lalamabhalalagnakah Shiveti mantramuchcharan sada sukhi bhavamyaham
Imam hi nityameva muktamuttamottamam stavam Pathansmaran bruvannaro vishuddhimeti santatam Hare gurau subhaktimashu yati nanyatha gatim Vimohanam hi dehinam sushankarasya chintanam
Benefits of Shiva Tandava Stotram
As per Hindu Shastras ( Hindu scriptures), all can worship Shiva. There is no rule, anyone from any caste or gender can chant the Shiva Tandava Stotram anytime. The only qualification we needs is Bhakti (devotion). The benefits of reciting Shiva Tandav Stotram are miraculous. It can give us immense spiritual and mundane benefits. It can also give us the power, mental strength, happiness, prosperity and a lot more and cleanse our mind. More than all these, we will definitely get Shiva’s blessings on us. If we just listen to the song with full devotion, we can surely feel the presence of Lord Shiva in us. This is the most energetic and powerful composition I have heard and I bow down to it. It can be listened and chanted anytime but Pradosh Kaal (around 1 hour before and after sunset) is termed as the most beneficial as Ravana did it during these hours.
How to Listen or Chant the Stotram
I know its bit tough, but learn the meaning of complete Stotram to understand different dimensions of Shiva. Close your eyes, visualize Lord Shiva along with every line of the Stotram with full devotion. And then surely you will feel a step closer to Shiva or oneness with Shiva. But remember, Bhakti(devotion) is the only qualification. So, don’t do it for the sake of benefits only. Rather, do it without expectations and with the absence of wordly passion. Lord Shiva has said, anyone who reads, chants and remembers this stotram will be purified forever.
Shiva Tandava Stotram in the Materialistic World
The materialistic world we live in is full of different types of social and natural complexities and problems. Recently Covid-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic has been a new global crisis. For all these human beings are losing their hopes gradually. Shiva Tandava Stotram can be a solution to it. We should chant the stotram with devotion and in the right way to get benefits from it. Om Namah Shivay.