Ishana Shiva
last updated 26th April 2008

Hare Krishna Prabhu,

I personally am not from the Gaudiya Vaishnava parampara and actually come from a Shaiva Siddhanta Parampara where my Dikshita name is Ishana Shiva. The Lord Shriman Maha Vishnu is given special veneration in our parampara as an important Krama devata who needs to be worshipped in order to progress into Shaiva Siddhanta. He is worshipped as a central figure of the Aditya mandala (consisting of the 12 great Adityas) along with some of his Leela Avatars. Unfortunately we do not focus so much on Shringara puja nor Rasa Krita as practiced in many different Vaishnava groups, but that didnít stop me from obtaining a few Shaligramas and worshipping them.

I received tremendous inspiration from your site and it urged me further to look into the Greatness of Lord Hari in a manner befitting my spiritual context, that is to say worshipping the Shaligrams and the Deity of Our Lord. So Now everymorning when I wake up to Wash the Shiva lingas, tens of Shaligrama Shilas also receive the pujas as conducted from the Yajur Vedas and various different Shaiva Tantric doctrines. Ours is perhaps one of those few homes where the Lords are adorned with the trikalam instead of the urdhva pundra!

Top left is a large brown Narmadeshwara which I worship as Ardhanareshwara, below it as a red Narmadeshwara who is worshipped as Vamadeva. Beside Ardhanareshwara is a red Shaligrama known as Ananta Lakshmi (Ananta hood with eyes and lakshmi lakshanas);  Beside the Mother Lakshmi is Lord Hayagriva and next to him is a crimson Lakshmi-Narasimha. The last shila on the Row is a peculiar padmanabha that has white markings, the white markings close up appear as an effigy of Saraswati seated on a lotus so I regarded this Shila as Hamsa-Saraswati coming out of the eye of Lord Shiva so he was named Hamsa-Parameshwara. The Shila below him is a Lakshmi Janardhana that has several Lakshanas of Narasimha as two joined chakras, a Lakshmi Lakshana and a Dhanavantari chakra; He also has many naturally formed urdhva pundras. Left of Lord Janardhana is Hayagriva but the shila appears as Saraswati holding a veena. Beside mother Saraswati is my prized Shiva Linga which I worship as Sadyojatah Shiva. Below Saraswati is Shridhara.

Stars off with Vamadeva (The Red Narmadeshwara), above him is a very peculiar matsya, who is seated next to my Garuda. Just Below Garuda is my Ananta Linga, this is a Shaligram Shila with a natural tripurna formation and an ananta as a hood; the ananta himself has eyes and below the linga formation there are many different claw marks. Below him is a Mrityunjaya Shaligrama which has (inside the little cavity) a shiney golden narasimha and a blueish fissure. Next to him is a Sudarshana that is encircled by Shesha who has his hood just above the sudarshana, he too has two eyes. Right hand side to that is my sheshadhipati, above him is my chakradhari Vishnu who has an aumkara lakshana on him and the chakra itself is shiney golden. Left of him is Lord Narasimha.

On top is  a red Lakshmi Narayana, below him is Lord Padmanabha,  below him is a Gopala and I believe a Mukunda. Just above Mukunda are two Narasimhas, above them is a yoni (this Shaligram does resemble a yoni!). Just above the yoni is a Chakradhari Vishnu with a dark black chakra and beside him is Ganapati. At the furthest top left is goddess Kali where the golden portion of the Shila has three eyes and what appears to be a protruding tongue! Below her is an adhanareshwara shila which has symbols of Lord Shiva, Lakshmi and when you put it in water a part of it appears to be blue. At the bottom right is another Narmadeshwara.

Silver Krishna

Vishnu Altar

Lalita Temple

My Alter is where worship is conducted by myself and the Deity standing there is bathed along with the shilas and served since he has been ritualistically awakened. The Vishnu alter which has a panchadhatu Vishnu is worshipped by my Mother and she serves that particular deity. I hope you have liked the shilas which are under our care.

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