Pancha Brahma Upanishad Shiva with Five Faces

The Pancha Brahama Upanishad belongs to the Krishna Yajur Veda.


Pancha Brahma Upanishad deals with the Five Aspects of Lord Shiva.


The Five Faces of Shiva.


  1. Sadyojāta
  2. Vāmadeva
  3. Aghora
  4. Tatpurusha
  5. Īshāna


Sadyojāta is associated with the western direction and represents Icchā Shaktī–will power.     Sadyojāta is associated with Manomaya Kosha—the sheath covering the soul that consists of mind.     Additionally, this face is associated with the fire element representing the fire of the mind and the fire of the body.     This face is Shiva’s function as the creative force and is associated with Manipura chakra.

Vāmadeva is associated with the northern direction.     This face of Shiva is associated with the shakti of strength and beauty as well as the goddess Maya.       Vāmadeva is associated with the Vijῆānamaya Kosha.     This face is the Citta rūpa, the form of the universal consciousness limited to the individual mind. Several traditions believe that mantra to Vāmadeva has considerable healing benefit. This is the preserving energy of Shiva, and is connected with the air element as well as the Ānahata Chakra.

Aghora is associated with the southern direction and jῆāna Shaktī–the power of knowledge; as well as the Buddhi rūpa meaning the form of the intellect. This face is associated with the Pranamaya Kosha, and represents the rejuvenating and dissolving qualities of Shiva as well as being connected with the water element and Svadishthana chakra.

Tatpurusha is the eastern face.     This face represents the parātman or supreme soul behind the physical being. This form is Ānānda Shaktī, the power of bliss.     Connected with the Annamaya kosha, tatpurusha in its higher manifestation is bliss; in the lower manifestation it is the concealing power of Shiva.     This face is associated with the earth element, muladhara chakra and is considered beneficial for increasing focus.

Īshāna is the upper or skyward face. It is the Citta Shaktī or power of the individual consciousness to realize the universal consciousness.     This form is associated with Akasha or ether, and the Vishuddha chakra. This is the total energy of Shiva encompassing all attributes of Shiva.     This is the face of Shiva that is the revealing power and is associated with the Anandamaya kosha. F


Om. Next Paippalada addressed (Mahadeva) ‘What is That which came to exist at first’?

2. (He replied). Sadyojata. ‘What is that O Lord’, ? ‘Aghora’. What is that, O Lord? ‘Vamadeva’. What are those, O Lord? ‘Tatpurusha.’ What are these, O Lord? ‘Isana, the instructor of all the Vidyas.’

3. He is the Isana (ruler) of the past and the future and of all the gods.

4. All the Secrets, whatever they have with colors, divisions and energies, the Lord Mahesa gave out to him (Paippalada).

5. Adoration to Mahadeva, Maharudra.

6. O Sakala, hear from me, whatever are the secrets of secrets in the world (a teacher says to his pupil).

7. Sadyojata, which bestows all the desired objects, represents Earth, Pusha (the sun), Lakshmi, Brahma, Trivritsvara (sound), Rig Veda, Garhapatya fire, the mantras which have seven notes, yellow color, and Kriyasakti.

8. Aghora, which destroys all the multitude of sins, which pacifies evils, and which bestows all prosperities, represents water, the moon, Gauri, Yajurveda, cloud color, Sandrasvara, Dakshinagni, the mantras with fifty syllables, protection and Ichchasakti.

9. Vamadeva, which gives the great wisdom, represents Agni, Vidyakala, Samaveda, Svara with eight notes, Dhirasvara (majestic sound), Ahavantya fire, knowledge and dissolution energies, and white color mixed with darkness. He, whose brightness is equal to that of crores of suns, possesses full consciousness and is the leader of the three states (of consciousness). He distributes the fruits of all actions to men, who are in the three states of consciousness, and also bestows on them all the prosperities. He, whose mantra is Eight syllabled one, resides in the center of eight-petalled lotus (of the heart).

10. Tatpurusha is he, who possessed the air, the five fires, who is the leader of the mantra energies, and who has the fifty letters and their notes, and Atharvaveda. He is the head of crores of the Ganas (Elements) and whose body is the whole universe. His color is Red-which gives the desired objects. He is the panacea for all kinds of diseases, the cause of the creation, preservation and destruction &c., and the possessor of all the Saktis. He is above the three states of consciousness, the fourth (Turiya), and existence, consciousness and bliss himself, He is worshipped by Brahma, Vishnu and others, and the Supreme Father of all.

11. Isana should be known as the Supreme Ruler and the witness of the intelligence. He is the Ether unmanifested, and to be worshipped by the ‘Omkarasvara’. He is all the Devas, calm, and above the calmness, and beyond the ‘Svara’ (notes). He is the presiding deity of the letters ‘A’ and other Svaras, and whose body is the Ether itself. He is the cause of the five functions (creation &c.) in the great form of the five Brahmans (Sadyojata &c.). He remains (at the time of dissolution) involving the five Brahmans in himself, and also remains after absorbing all the manifestations of his own maya in himself. He shines by his own glory transcending the five Brahmans. He shines in himself in the past, present and future depending on none else.

12. All the Devas, do not realize him, bewildered by the maya of Sambhu, the Mahadeva, the Guru of the universe and the Cause of all the causes.

13. His form will not stand before any. He is the highest of the highest, the support of the universe, the person, by whom the universe is manifested and in whom it is involved. He is the Supreme Brahman, calm, he is the Supreme abode and I am that Brahman itself.

14. One should understand the five Supreme Brahmans, Sadyojata and others; whatever we see and hear all are the five Brahmans. These five are, as it were, the division of one Brahman. Thus understanding the one as five he reaches Isana (the fifth). The learned should absorb all, which are in the form of the five Brahmans, in his self and realize that ‘I am they’, and he reaches Brahman, becoming immortal. He who knows thus, becomes freed from the bondage; there is no doubt in this.

15. Sambhu is in the form of the five-syllabled mantra (Panchakshara). He is the Supreme Brahman. Knowing the Panchakshara as consisting from the letter ‘Na’ to ‘Ya’, one should repeat the mantra.

16. One should realize the universe as Panchakshara in the nature of the five Brahmans.

17. He, who studies this vidya of the five Brahmans with devotion, attaining the state of the five Brahmans, shines himself in five forms.

18. Thus Mahadeva, addressing Galava, the great Soul, blessing him and disappeared there.

19. By hearing which alone, the unheard things become heard, the unthought, O Sakala, and the unknown is known. Just as by knowing one lump of earth alone, O Gautama, all the Earth is known as the effect (pot &c.) is not separate from the cause (Mother Earth); just as by knowing one jewel alone, all other metals one known; and just as by knowing one nail parer only, all other iron made things are known, as they are not in nature different from their cause, so is the effect (the universe) not separate from its cause (Isvara). The effect becomes always eternal in the form of its cause. The saying as different is indeed false. The cause is only one, and he is not separate (from the effects) nor with both forms (separateness and non-separateness). The idea of separateness is false, as it is impossible to find out the cause of difference. Therefore the cause is only one, the eternal and second less. This second less cause is, surely the Pure Consciousness itself.

20. In this city of Brahman (Body) there is, O Sage, a small lotus like house. In the center of it, there is a subtle ether. He is Siva, Sat, Chit, and Ananda. He should be sought after by those desirous of Salvation. As He is residing in the heart as the witness of all, without differences, Siva is called ‘Hridaya’ (resider in the heart), the liberator from the Samsara.

Thus ends the upanishatTranslation by R.A Sastri.Citation.

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