By Adi Sankaracharya, Translated bY P. R. Ramachander
These 100 stanzas are supposed to be the foremost among Mantra literature. It is also believed that by Making suitable Yantras and reciting particular stanzas and worshipping the yantras almost anything can be obtained in the world .There are more thn 36 commentaries to Soundarya Lahari written in Sanskrit itself. Of them the most famous is that written by Lakshmi Dhara alias Lalla, His commentary is used to understand the meaning of the different verses. Though there are large number of translations and commentaries of Soundarya Lahari available this is perhaps the first time an attempt is made by a mere novice to translate them in to English verse. The aim is to bring to the notice of the devotes who know English better than other languages , the majesty of the medium of worship called Soundarya Lahari. A transliteration in roman script is also given. May all those who read this be drenched forever by this “Wave of happiness”
Part I - Ananda Lahari (The waves of happiness)*
Shivah shakthya yukto yadi bhavati shaktah prabhavitum
Na chedevam devo na khalu kusalah spanditumapi;
Atas tvam aradhyam Hari-Hara-Virinchadibhir apiPranantum stotum vaa katham akrta-punyah prabhavati
Lord Shiva, only becomes able.
To do creation in this world along with Shakthi
Without her, Even an inch he cannot move,
And so how can, one who does not do good deeds,
Or one who does not sing your praise,
Become adequate to worship youOh , goddess mine, Who is worshipped by the trinity.
(Attracting all the world)&
Taniyamsam pamsum tava carana-pankeruha-bhavam
Virincih sanchinvan virachayati lokan avikalam;
Vahaty evam Shaurih katham api sahasrena shirasaamHarah samksudy'ainam bhajati bhajati bhasito'ddhalama-vidhim.
Lord Brahma ,the creator of yore,
Selects a dust from your feet,
And creates he this world,
The great Adisesha* with his thousand heads,
Some how carries a dust of your feet,
With effort great,
And the great Lord Rudra,
Takes it and powders it nice,
And uses it as the holy ash.
(Attainment of all knowledge)
Jadanam chaitanya-stabaka-makaranda-sruti jhari
Daridranam cinta-mani-gunanika janma-jaladhauNimadhanam damshtra mura-ripu-varahasya bhavati.
The dust under your feet, Oh Goddess great,
Is like the city of the rising sun,
That removes all darkness , unfortunate,
From the mind of the poor ignorant one,
Is like the honey that flows ,
From the flower bunch of vital action,
To the slow witted one,
Is like the heap of wish giving gems,
To the poorest of men,
And is like the teeth of Lord Vishnu
In the form of Varaha,
Who brought to surface,
The mother earth,To those drowned in this sea of birth.
(Removal of all fears, Curing of diseases)
Tvad anyah paanibhyam abhaya-varado daivataganah
Tvam eka n'aivasi prakatita-var'abhityabhinaya;
Bhayat tratum datum phalam api cha vancha samadhikamSaranye lokanam tava hi charanaveva nipunav..
Oh, She who is refuge to all this world,
All gods except you mother,
Give refuge and grants wishes,
Only by their hand.
But only you mother
Never show the world in detail,
The boons and refuge that you can give,
For even your holy feet will suffice,
To remove fear for ever,And grant boons much more than asked.
(Mutual attraction between male and female)
Haris tvam aradhya pranata-jana-saubhagya-jananim
Pura nari bhutva Pura-ripum api ksobham anayat;
Smaro'pi tvam natva rati-nayana-lehyena vapushaMuninam apyantah prabhavati hi mohaya mahatam.
You who grant all the good things,
To those who bow at your feet,
Was worshipped by the Lord Vishnu,
Who took the pretty lovable feminine form,
And could move the mind of he who burnt the cities,
And make him fall in love with him.
And the God of love , Manmatha,
Took the form which is like nectar,
Drunk by the eyes by Rathi his wife,
After venerating you,
Was able to create passion ,Even in the mind of Sages the great.
(Getting sons as progeny)
Dhanun paushpam maurvi madhu-kara-mayi pancha visikha
Vasantaha samanto Malaya-marud ayodhana-rathah;
Tatha'py ekah sarvam Himagiri-suthe kam api kripaamApangat te labdhva jagadidam Anango vijayate
Oh ,daughter of the mountain of ice,
With a bow made of flowers,
Bow string made of honey bees,
Five arrows made of only tender flowers,
With spring as his minister,
And riding on the chariot of breeze from Malaya mountains
The god of love who does not have a body,
Gets the sideways glance of your holy eyes,And is able to win all the world alone.
(Seeing the Goddess in person, Winning over enemies)
Pariksheena madhye parinata-sarachandra-vadana;
Dhanur banan pasam srinim api dadhana karatalaiiPurastad astam noh Pura-mathitur aho-purushika.
With a golden belt,
Adorned by tiny tingling bells,
Slightly bent by breasts like the two frontal globes
Of an elephant fine,
With a thin pretty form,
And with a face like the autumn moon,
Holding in her hands,
A bow of sugar cane , arrows made of flowers,
And the noose and goad,
She who has the wonderful form,
Of the ego of the God who burnt the three cities,Should please come and appear before us.
(Avoiding of birth and death)
Sudha-sindhor madhye sura-vitapi-vati parivrte
Mani-dweepe nipo'pavana-vathi chintamani-grhe;
Shivaakare manche Parama-Shiva-paryanka-nilayamBhajanti tvam dhanyah katichana chid-ananda-laharim.
In the middle of the sea of nectar,
In the isle of precious gems,
Which is surrounded by wish giving Kalpaga trees,
In the garden Kadamba trees,
In the house of the gem of thought,
On the all holy seat of the lap of the great God Shiva,
Sits she who is like a tide
In the sea of happiness of ultimate truth,And is worshipped by only by few select holy men.
(For return of people who have gone on journey,
For getting eight types of wealth)
Mahim muladhare kamapi manipure huthavaham
Sthitham svadhistane hridi marutamakasam upari;
Mano'pi bhruu-madhye sakalamapi bhittva kula-pathamSahasrare padme saha rahasi patyaa viharase.
Oh Goddess mine,
You live in seclusion with your consort,
In the lotus with thousand petals,
Reached after breaking through the micro ways,
Of the power of earth in Mooladhara,
Of the power of water of Mani poora,
Of the power of fire of Swadhishtana,
Of the fire of air in the heart,And of the power of ether in between the eyelids*
(Getting a strong body, virility)
Sudha-dhara-sarais carana-yugalanta vigalitaih
Prapancham sinchanti punarapi ras'amnaya-mahasah;
Avapya svam bhumim bhujaga-nibham adhyusta-valayamSvam atmanam krtva svapishi kulakunde kuharini
Using the nectar that flows in between your feet,
To drench all the nerves of the body,
And descending from the moon with nectar like rays,
Reaching back to your place,
And coiling your body in to a ring like serpant,You sleep in the Kula Kunda* with a hole in the middle.
(Good progeny, Getting a meaning for life)
Chaturbhih shri-kantaih shiva-yuvatibhih panchabhir api
Prabhinnabhih sambhor navabhir api mula-prakrthibhih;
Chatus-chatvarimsad vasu-dala-kalasra-trivalaya-Tri-rekhabhih sardham tava sarana-konah parinatah
With four wheels of our Lord Shiva,
And with five different wheels of you, my mother,
Which are the real basis of this world,
Your house of the holy wheel,
Has four different parts,
Of eight and sixteen petals,
Three different circles,
And three different lines,Making a total of forty four angles*.
(To attain Lord Shiva, To make a dumb man speak)
Tvadiyam saundaryam Tuhina-giri-kanye tulayitum
Kavindrah kalpante katham api Virinchi-prabhrutayah;
Yadaloka'utsukyad amara-lalana yanti manasaTapobhir dus-prapam api girisa-sayujya-padavim.
Oh, daughter of ice mountain,
Even the creator who leads ,
An array of great poets,
Fails to describe your sublime beauty.
The heavenly maidens pretty,
With a wish to see your pristine loveliness,
Try to see you through the eyes your Lord , the great Shiva,And do penance to him and reach him through their mind.
(Victory in the matters of love)
Naram varshiyamsam nayana virasam narmasu jadam,
Thava panga loke pathitha manudhavanthi sathasa
Gala dweni bhandha kuch kalasa visthrutha sichayaHatath thrudyath kanchyho vigalidha dhukoola yuva thaya.
With disheveled hair,
With upper cloths slipping from their busts,
With the lock of the golden belt getting open due to the haste,
And with saris slipping away from their shoulders,
Hundreds of young lasses,
Run after the men,
Who get your sidelong glance,
Even though they are very old,Bad looking and not interested in love sports.
(Avoiding famine, dacoity and epidemic)
Ksitau sat-panchasad dvi-samadhika-panchasadudake
Hutase dva-sastis chatur-adhika-panchasad anile;
Divi dvih-shatrimsan manasi cha chatuh-sashtir iti yeMayukhastesham athyupari tava padambuja yugam.
Your two holy feet are far above,
The fifty six rays of the essence of earth of Mooladhara,
The fifty two rays of the essence of water of Mani pooraka,
The sixty two rays of the essence of fire of Swadhishtana,
The fifty four rays of the essence of air of Anahatha,
The seventy two rays of the essence of ether of Visuddhi,And the sixty four rays of the essence of mind of Agna chakra.
(Ability to write poems and ability to become scholar)
Sakrn na thva nathva katham iva sathaam sannidadhateMadhu-kshira-drakhsa-madhurima-dhurinah phanitayah.
Sweetest words rivaling the honey, milk and grapes,
Can only Come to the thoughts of the devotee,
Who once meditates on your face,
Which is like the white autumn moon,
On your head with a crown with the crescent moon and flowing hair,
And hands that shower boons and give protection,Which hold the crystal chain of beads and books.
(Mastery of Vedas)
Bhajante ye santah katichid arunameva bhavatim;
Virinchi-preyasyas tarunatara sringara-lahari-Gabhirabhi vagbhir vidadhati satam ranjanamami.
She who is the purple luster of the dawn,
To the lotus forest like mind,
Of the kings of poets of the world,
And thus called Aruna-the purple coloured one,
Creates happiness in the mind of the holy,
With tender passionate wave of words ,
(Of Sarswathi the darling of Brahma,)Which are royal and youthful.
(mastery over words, Knowledge of science)
Savitribhir vacham Chasi-mani-sila-bhanga-rucibhir
Vasiny'adyabhis tvam saha janani samchintayati yah;
Sa karta kavyanam bhavati mahatam bhangi-rucibhihVacobhi vagdevi-vadana-kamal'amoda madhuraii..
Oh, mother holy,
He who worships you,
Along with the goddess like Vasini,
Who are the prime source of words,
And you who are having the great luster,
Got by breaking the moon stone,
Becomes the author of great epics,
Which shine like those written by great ones,
And which have the sweet scentOf the face of the goddess of knowledge
(Victory in love)
Thanuschayabhi sthe tharuna-tharuni –srisarinibhi
Divam sarva-murvi-marunimani magnam smaranthi ya
Bhavanthasya thrasya-dhwana-harina shaleena nayanaSahervasya vasya kathikathi na geervana Ganika
He who meditates on,
The luster of your beautiful body,
Which is blessed by the rising sun,
And which dissolves the sky and the world,
In light purple hue,
Makes celestial damsels like Uravasi and others,
Who have eyes like the wild startled deer,Follow him like slaves.
(Victory in love)
Mukham bindun kruthva kucha yuga mada sthasya thadha dho
Harardha dhyayedhyo haramamahishi the manmathakalam
Sa sadhya samkshebham nayathi vanitha inyathiladhuThrilokimapyasu bramayathi ravindu sthana yugam.
Hey, Mother who is Goddess of all universe,
He who meditates on you ,
As the crescent of love of our lord great,,
On the dot of the holy wheel,
Your two busts just below,
And you as the half of Shiva our lord,
Not only Creates waves of emotion in ladies,But charms the world, which has moon and sun as busts.
(Curing of all poisons and curing of all fevers)
Kirantim angebhyah kirana-nikurumba'mrta-rasam
Hrdi tvam adhatte hima-kara-sila murthimiva yah;
Sa sarpanam darpam samayati sakuntadhipa iva
Jvara-plustan drshtya sukhayati sudhadhara-siraya.
He who meditates in his mind,
On you who showers nectar from all your limbs,
And in the form which resembles,
The statue carved out of moonstone,
Can with a single stare,
Put an end to the pride of snakes,
And with his nectar like vision,Cure those afflicted by fever.
(Attracting every one, Making everyone happy)
Nishannam shannam apy upari kamalanam tava kalaam;
Maha-padma tavyam mrdita-mala-mayena manasaMahantah pasyanto dadhati parama'hlada-laharim.
Those souls great,
Who have removed all the dirt from the mind,
And meditate on you within their mind,
Who is of the form of sun and moon,
And living in the forest of lotus,
And also above the six wheels of lotus,
Enjoy waves after waves,Of happiness supreme.
(Getting of all powers)
Bhavani tvam daase mayi vitara drishtim sakarunam
Iti sthotum vanchan kadhayati Bhavani tvam iti yah;
Tadaiva tvam tasmai disasi nija-sayujya-padavimMukunda-brahmendra-sphuta-makuta-nirajita-padam.
If any one has wish in his mind to pray.
“You , Bhavani , my mother,
Please shower on me, a part of your merciful look”,
Even before he says, “You Bhavani”,
You my goddess,
Would give to him the water,
Falling from the crowns ,
Of Vishnu, Rudra and Brahma,
At your feet,And grant him, the eternal life in your world.
(getting of all riches)
Tvaya hrithva vamam vapur aparitripthena manasa
Sarir'ardham sambhor aparam api sankhe hritham abhut;
Yad ethat tvadrupam sakalam arunabham trinayanamKuchabhyam anamram kutila-sadi-chuudala-makutam.
Your form in my mind,
Is the colour of red of the rising sun,
Is adorned with three eyes,
Has two heavy busts,
Is slightly bent,
And wears a crown with the crescent moon,
And hence arises a doubt in me,
That you were not satisfied ,
By half the body of Shambu that he gave,And occupied all his body.
(Management of fear of Bhoothas, Prethas and Pishachas)
Jagat suthe dhata harir avati rudrah kshapayate
Tiraskurvan etat svam api vapurisastirayati;
Sada-purvah sarvam tad idamanugrhnati cha Shiva-Stavajnam aalambya kshana-chalitayor bhru-latikayoh.
Brahma creates the world,
Vishnu looks after it,
Shiva destroys it,
Easwara makes them disappear,
And also disappears himself,
And Sadshiva blesses them all,
By your order given to him,By a momentary move of your eyebrows.
(Getting higher posts and power)
Trayanam devanam thri-guna-janitanam tava Sive
Bhavet puja puja tava charanayor ya virachita;
Tatha hi tvat-pado'dvahana-mani-pithasya nikateSthita hy'ete sasvan mukulita-karottamsa-makuta
Consort of Shiva,
The worship done at the base of your feet,
Is the worship done to the holy Trinity,
Born based on your trine properties .
This is so true, oh mother,
Because don’t the trinity,
Always stand with folded hands,
Kept on their crown
Near the jeweled plank,Which carries thine feet.
(Destruction of enemies)
Virincih panchatvam vrajati harir apnoti virathim
Vinasam kinaso bhajati dhanado yati nighanam;
Vitandri mahendri vithathir api sammeelita-drsaMaha-samhare smin viharati sati tvat-patirasau.
The creator reaches the dissolution,
The Vishnu attains death,
The god of death even dies,
Kubera the lord of wealth expires,
The Indras close their eyes one after one,
And attain the wake less sleep,
During the final deluge,
But you my chaste mother,Play with your consort the Sadashiva
(Realisation of self and ultimate truth)
Japo jalpah shilpam sakalam api mudra-virachana
Gatih pradaksinya-kramanam asanady'ahuti-vidhih;
Pranamah samvesah sukham akilam atmarpana-drsaSaparya-paryayas tava bhavatu yan me vilasitam.
Let the mutterings that I do,
With the sacrifice in my soul.
Become chanting of your name,
Let all my movements become thine Mudhras,
Let my travel become perambulations around thee,
Let the act of eating and drinking become fire sacrifice to thee,
Let my act of sleeping becomes salutations to you ,
And let all actions of pleasure of mine,Become parts of thine worship.
(Fear of poison, Untimely death)
Sudham apy asvadya pratibhaya-jaraa-mrtyu-harinim
Vipadyante visve Vidhi-Satamakhadya divishadah;
Karalam yat ksvelam kabalitavatah kaala-kalanaNa Sambhos tan-mulam tava janani tadanka-mahima.
Oh, mother mine,
Gods like Indra and brahma,
Who have drunk deep the nectar divine,
Which removes the cruel aging and death,
Do die and disappear.
But Shambu thy consort,
Who swallowed poison that is potent,
Does never die,
Because of the greatness ,Of thine ear studs.
(Avoiding of abortions, Taming bad people)
Kiritam vairincham parihara purah kaitabha bhidah
Katore kotire skalasi jahi jambhari-makutam;
Pranamreshwateshu prasabha mupayatasya bhavanam
Bhavasy'abhyutthane tava parijanoktir vijayate.
Yours escorts divine,
Shout with concern at thee.
“Avoid the crown of Brahma,
You may hit your feet,
At the hard crown of Vishnu,
Who killed the ogre Kaidaba,
Avoid the crown of Indra”,
When you get up and rush in a hurry,To receive thine lord who comes to your place.
(Entering to another body)
Sva-deh'odbhutabhir ghrnibhir animadyabhir abhito
Nishevye nitye tvamahamiti sada bhavayati yah;
Kim-ascharyam tasya tri-nayana-samrddhim trinayatoMaha-samvartagnir virchayati nirajana-vidhim.
It is not surprising to know, Oh mother,
Who does not have birth and death,
And who is most suitable to be served,
That the destroying fire of the deluge,
Shows prayerful harathi to the one.
Who considers you,
(Who is of the form of rays,
And is surrounded on all four sides,
By the angels of power called Anima,)
As his soul always,
And who considers the wealth of the three eyed God,As worthless and as equal to dried grass.
(Attraction of everything)
Cautuh-shashtya tantraih sakalam atisamdhaya bhuvanam
Sthitas tat-tat-siddhi-prasava-para-tantraih pasupatih;
Punas tvan-nirbandhad akhila-purusarth'aika ghatana-Svatantram te tantram khsiti-talam avatitaradidam.
The Lord of all souls, Pasupathi*,
Did create the sixty four thanthras,
Each leading to only one desired power,
And started he his relaxation..
But you goaded him mother,
To create in this mortal world.
Your thanthra called Sri vidya.
Which grants the devotee,
All powers that give powers,Over all the states in life.
(long life, Attracting of everything)
Sivah saktih kamah kshitir atha ravih sithakiranah
Smaro hamsah sakrastadanu cha para-mara-harayah;
Amee hrllekhabhis tisrbhir avasanesu ghatitha
Bhajante varnaste tava janani nam'avayavatham.
She who is mother of us all,
The seed letter “ka” of my lord Shiva,
The seed letter “a” of goddess Shakthi,
The seed letter “ee” of the god of love,
The seed letter “la” of earth,
The seed letter “ha” of the sun god,
The seed letter “sa” of the moon with cool rays,
The seed letter “ka” of again the god of love,
The seed letter ”ha” of the sky,
The seed letter “la” of Indra , the king of devas,
The seed letter “sa” of Para,
The seed letter “ka” of the God of love,
The seed letter “la” of the Lord Vishnu,
Along with your seed letters “Hrim”,
Which joins at the end of each of the three holy wheels,Become the holy word to worship you.
Smaram yonim lakshmim trithayam idam adau tava manor
Nidhay'aike nitye niravadhi-maha-bhoga-rasikah;
Bhajanti tvam chintamani-guna-nibaddh'aksha-valayah
Sivagnau juhvantah surabhi-ghrta-dhara'huti-sataih.
Oh, mother who is ever present,
Those who realize the essence ,
Of the limitless pleasure of the soul you give,
And who add the seed letter “Iim” of the god of love,
The seed letter “Hrim” of the goddess Bhuavaneswaree,
And the seed letter “Srim” of the goddess Lakhmi,
Which are the three letter triad,
Wear the garland of the gem of thoughts,
And offer oblations to the fire in triangle of Shiva,
With the pure scented ghee of the holy cow, Kamadhenu,
Several times and worship you.