Narayana Suktam Lyrics and Benefits
The Narayana Sukta is, in a way, the mystical appendix to the Purusha Sukta of the Veda, the only difference between the Purusha Sukta and the Narayana Sukta being the divination of the Deity addressed by them. The Purusha Sukta beholds the Supreme Being as the All-encompassing, Impersonal Purusha, while the Narayana Sukta addresses the Lord as Narayana. The Purusha Sukta, thus, is a hymn addressed to the Purusha extending beyond the cosmos yet at the same time present within creation, and the Narayana Sukta is a devout, touching, feelingful and personal address to the Creator of the universe. In the Narayana Sukta some clarification of the hidden meaning of the Purusha Sukta is to be discovered.
Narayana is the thousand-headed one, thousand-eyed, and thousand-limbed. But Narayana is not merely the Father or Creator of the cosmos, beyond creation, but is also hidden in the heart of everyone. Like a resplendent flame in the heart of the individual, Narayana can be visualised in deep meditation. In the lotus of the heart there is the citadel of the cosmos, the palace of the Creator of the universe. Thus, the worshipper of the Supreme Narayana need not necessarily look up to the sky to behold Him and adore Him.
One can as well see the same Narayana within himself, in his own heart. While Narayana creates the world from outside, He also impels everyone through feeling and action from within. Through every nerve-current, life flows and vibrates. This vibration, this flow of life, is the chaitanya, or Consciousness, of Narayana moving in creation. Narayana is adored as the One Being extending beyond Brahma, Vishnu, Siva, Indra and all the gods and angels, while Himself appearing as every one of them the Imperishable, Self-existent All. Whatever all this universe is yacca kincit jagat sarvam seen or unseen, in its depths or merely heard of, Narayana is within and without all these, enveloping everyone. May Narayana bless us, and bestow upon us glory.
“Narayana Suktam” is a hymn which is present in Yajurveda Taittiriya Arankaya and has been registered in “Maha Narayanopanishad”.
This hymn is misunderstood by everyone (including scholars), as being a hymn of “Lord Vishnu”. But the truth is that, this hymn is entirely a playground of Shakti (and Shiva) only. In fact, Shiva and Shakti being inseparable wherever Shakti is glorified, Shiva is implicitly glorified, and vice versa. This “Narayana Suktam” is a hymn to Goddess Tripurasundari Devi in her Nirguna aspect of Kundalini.
Why was this hymn’s name given as “Narayana Suktam”:
Why was this hymn’s name given as “Narayana Suktam” is just because this hymn is dedicated to the praise of the “movement of Tripurasundari Devi towards her consort nara – who is Shiva”.This is nothing but the movement of “Kundalini (Tripuasundari)” towards Shiva (Nara) through the Sushumna nerve. Well, this fact is clearly evident in verses 7-12 of this hymn.
For those readers who may not have patience to read this Hymn and corresponding analysis sequentially and who may want to see the meaning of “Narayana (as Kundalini – Tripurasundari)” in practice without wasting much time, I would suggest such readers to follow the following sequence in reading this hymn. Other readers who are like me, who prefer to read things in as-is sequence, may follow the as-is sequence.
Narayana Suktam verse(s) 7 – 12
Narayana Suktam verse(s) 1 – 6
Naarayana Suktam verse(s) 13-14
Where the verses 7-12 would give us a clear picture of Goddess Tripurasundari’s Kundalini aspect whose Ayana (Direction) is through Sushumna towards the Sahasrara where Nara (Shiva) resides. And verses 1-6 details out how the same goddess Tripurasudnari has manifested herself as this universe and they also talk about her attributes of being a thousand headed and thousand eyed. Further, verse 13 clearly eulogizes the androgynous form (half male-half female form) of goddess Tripurasundari Devi where the right portion of her body is occupied by her consort Shiva. This verse no. 13 clearly beyond any doubt praises Shiva and Shakti since they are identical. Then the last verse viz. verse 14 is a closure verse for this hymn.
Narayana Suktam Lyrics in English:
The Narayana Suktam
om sahasra sirsam devam visvaksam visvasambhuvam ।
visvai narayanam devam aksaram paramam padam ॥ 1 ॥
Narayana is the name of goddess Tripurasundari whose direction or goal of movement (Ayana) is towards Nara (Shiva)”.
This universe is the Eternal Being (Narayana), the imperishable, the supreme, the goal, multi-headed and multi-eyed (i.e., omnipresent and omniscient), the resplendent, the source of delight for the whole universe.
This entire universe is the eternal being Narayana:
As analyzed in earlier sections, “Narayana is the name of goddess Tripurasundari whose direction or goal of movement (Ayana) is towards Nara (Shiva)”.
This interpretation is the only perfect interpretation because it makes this verse of Narayana Suktam remain in sync with the verses of Vedas and other Upanishads as discussed below. Any other interpretation of the word “Narayana” would end up contradicting these below Upanishads and Vedas entirely. And by logic, even an idiot would understand that there can be only one supreme god and all others should be his/her manifestation. There can never be more than one equally supreme king in the same jungle. And Vedas always state that there is only one supreme God who is addressed in various names (Ekam sat vipraH bahuDhA vadantI). So, going by this logic, “Narayana=Vishnu” would end up contradicting the below Upanishads whereas “Narayana=Shakti” remains in synchronization with the below evidences from Shruti.
Entire universe is the manifested form of Goddess Tripurasundari Devi (Lalita) as stated below.
“devI hyekAgra evAsIt.h | saiva jagadaNDamasR^ijat.h |” (Bahvricha Upanishad-1 from Rig Veda)
“The Goddess was indeed one in the beginning. Alone she emitted the world-egg (Hiranyagarbha)”.
“tvaM chAhaM cha sarvaM vishvaM sarvadevatA itarat.h |sarvaM mahAtripurasundarI |” (Bahvricha Upanishad-5 from Rig Veda)
“You and I and the entire universe and all divinities and all besides are the Maha-Tripura-Sundari”.
The same is stated again in Devi Upanishad also as follows.
“sarve vai devaa deviimupatasthuH | kaasi tvaM mahaadevi | saabraviidahaM brahmasvaruupiNii | mattaH prakR^itipurushhaatmaka.n jagach |” (Devi Upanishad-1-2 from Atharva Veda)
“All the gods waited upon the Goddess (and asked): ‘Mahadevi, who art Thou?’ She replied: I am essentially Brahman. From Me (has proceeded) the world comprising Prakriti (immobile objects) and Purusha (beings / mobile creatures)”.
N.B:- in the above verse it says from her proceeds the universe which is comprised of Prakriti and Purusha. Here Prakriti which constitutes the universe is a lower form of Prakriti called “Pradhana”, and that Prakriti is destructible (hence universe is destructible). And the Purusha mentioned as the constituent of the universe is all created beings which have consciousness. These two shouldn’t be confused with “Moola Prakriti (The goddess herself who is supreme and imperishable) and Purusha (supreme Brahman – Shiva).
All that is born takes birth inside the world-egg (Hiranyagarbha). And Hirayagarbha itself is born. And all that is born; actually gets their birth from Shakti. Shiva infuses life in the creation by entering as the indwelling Atman. The following verses also support the same.
“shivo.ayaM parama.n deva.n shaktireshhaa tu jiivajjaa |” (Tripuratapini Upanishad 1:18)
“Siva is the Supreme God. So (Brahman-knowers) say; Sakti is all that is born”.
Rig Veda says that Gauri (Uma) has become all this creation.
“gaurīrmimāya salilāni takṣatyekapadī dvipadī sā catuṣpadī
aṣṭāpadī navapadī babhūvuṣī sahasrākṣarā parame vyoman ” (RV 1.164.41)
“Forming the water-floods, the buffalo (cow) hath lowed, one-footed or two-footed or four-footed, she, Gauri, Who hath become eight-footed or hath got nine feet, the thousand-syllabled in the sublimest heaven.
“tasyāḥ samudrā adhi vi kṣaranti tena jīvanti pradiśaścatasraḥ
tataḥ kṣaratyakṣaraṃ tad viśvamupa jīvati ” (RV 1.164.42)
“From her (Gauri) descend in streams the seas of water; thereby the world’s four regions have their being, Thence flows the imperishable flood and thence the universe hath life”.
Well, the analysis of Narayana Suktam verse-1 is complete here because our interpretation of Narayana as Shakti is in sync with the other Shruti evdiences quoted above where it says from Shakti emerged this universe (which is same as what Narayana Suktam verse-1 also states).
But let’s see the presence of Ardhanareeshwara here for additional knowledge. Actually speaking; the whole universe and everything gets created by the union of Shiva and Shakti where Shiva implants his seed into Shakti and she engenders it as her womb (Hiranyagarbha – which is the universe). And within that womb as the embryos (worlds and creatures), it is Shiva who enters and makes the creation alive. In this process, all the creation inherits their material existence (or bodies) from Shakti (Prakriti) but the indweller is Shiva who takes birth.
So, this is to say that, Shiva takes birth from the womb of his Shakti as the manifested world, and creatures; where the visible entities are created by Shakti and the consciousness is Shiva. It is Shiva who enters the creation and makes it alive. The same has been explained in Bhagawad Gita (BG. 4.6), “prakritim svam adhisthaya sambhavamy atma-mayaya”, which means, “relying on my own Prakriti I take birth by my own (powers) of illusion”. In simple terms, it is like a mother who gives birth to a child where the child is the reincarnation of the father himself but gets his form and body created by his mother.
visvatah paramannityam visvam narayanam harim ।
visvam eva idam purusah tadvisvam upajivati ॥ 2 ॥
This universe is the Supreme Being (Purusha) alone; hence, it subsists on That, the Eternal which transcends it (in every way) the Omnipresent Absolute which destroys all sins.
patim visvasya atma isvaram sasvatam sivamacyutam ।
narayanam mahajneyam visvatmanam parayanam ॥ 3 ॥
The protector of the universe, the Lord of all souls (or Lord over Self), the perpetual, the auspicious, the indestructible, the Goal of all creation, the Supreme object worthy of being known, the Soul of all beings, the Refuge unfailing (is He).
narayana paro jyotiratma narayanah parah ।
narayana param brahma tattvam narayanah parah ।
n arayana paro dhyata dhyanam narayanah parah ॥ 4 ||
The Lord Narayana is the Supreme Absolute; Narayana is the Supreme Reality; Narayana is the Supreme Light; Narayana is the Supreme Self; Narayana is the Supreme Meditator; Narayana is the Supreme Meditation.
yacca kimcit jagat sarvam drsyate sruyate’pi va ।
amtarbahisca tatsarvam vyapya narayanah sthitah ॥ 5 ॥
Whatever all this universe is, seen or heard of pervading all this, from inside and outside alike, stands supreme the Eternal Divine Being (Narayana).
anantam avyayam kavim samudrentam visvasambhuvam ।
padma kosa pratikasam hrdayam ca api adhomukham ॥ 6 ॥
He is the Limitless, Imperishable, Omniscient, residing in the ocean of the heart, the Cause of the happiness of the universe, the Supreme End of all striving, (manifesting Himself) in the ether of the heart which is comparable to an inverted bud of the lotus flower.
adho nisthya vitastyante nabhyam upari tisthati ।
jvalamalakulam bhati visvasyayatanam mahat ॥ 7 ॥
Below the Adam’s apple, at a distance of a span, and above the navel (i.e., the heart which is the relative seat of the manifestation of Pure Consciousness in the human being), effulges the Great Abode of the universe, as if adorned with garlands of flames.
santatam silabhistu lambatya kosasannibham ।
tasyante susiram suksmam tasmin sarvam pratisthitam ॥ 8 ॥
Surrounded on all sides by nerve-currents (or arteries), the lotus-bud of the heart is suspended in an inverted position. In it is a subtle space (a narrow aperture, the sushumna-nadi), and therein is to be found the Substratum of all things.
tasya madhye mahanagnih visvarcih visvato mukhah ।
so’gravibhajamtisthan aharam ajarah kavih ॥ 9 ॥
In that space within the heart resides the Great Flaming Fire, undecaying, all-knowing, with tongues spread out in all directions, with faces turned everywhere, consuming all food presented before it, and assimilating it into itself.
tiryagurdhvamadhassayi rasmayah tasya santata ।
santapayati svam dehamapadatalamastakah ।
tasya madhye vahnisikha aniyordhva vyavasthitah ॥ 10 ॥
His rays, spreading all round, sideways as well as above and below, warm up the whole body from head to foot. In the center of That (Flame) abides the Tongue of Fire as the topmost among all subtle things.Note:Due to the attachments and entanglement of the jiva in worldly enjoyment and suffering, the Consciousness is enshrouded in potential as well as expressed objectivity; hence, it appears like a tiny streak of flame within the dark clouds of ignorance. But when the jiva rises above worldliness, the Consciousness is realised as the Infinite.
nilatoyada-madhyastha-dvidyullekheva bhasvara ।
nivarasukavattanvi pita bhasvatyanupama ॥ 11 ॥
Brilliant like a streak of lightning set in the midst of the blue rain-bearing clouds, slender like the awn of a paddy grain, yellow (like gold) in colour, in subtlety comparable to the minute atom, (this Tongue of Fire) glows splendid.
tasyah sikhaya madhye paramatma vyavasthitah ।
sa brahma sa sivah sa harih sa indrah so’ksarah paramah svarat ॥ 12 ॥
In the middle of that Flame, the Supreme Self dwells. This (Self) is Brahma (the Creator), Siva (the Destroyer), Hari (the Protector), Indra (the Ruler), the Imperishable, the Absolute, the Autonomous Being.
rtam satyam param brahma purusam krsna pingalam ।
urdhvaretam virupaksam visvarupaya vai namo namah ॥ 13 ॥
Prostrations again and again to the Omni-formed Being, the Truth, the Law, the Supreme Absolute, the Purusha of blue-decked yellow hue, the Centralised-force Power, the All-seeing One.
Om narayanaya vidmahe vasudevaya dhimahi ।
tanno visnuh pracodayat ॥
Om samti samti samtih ॥
We commune ourselves with Narayana, and meditate on Vaasudeva; May that Vishnu direct us (to the Great Goal).
ōṁ śāntiḥ śāntiḥ śāntiḥ.
Om. May there be Peace, Peace, Peace.
Narayana Suktam Lyrics in Devanagari:
ॐ ॥ स॒ह॒स्र॒शीर्॑षं दे॒वं॒ वि॒श्वाक्षं॑ वि॒श्वशं॑भुवम् ।
विश्वं॑ ना॒राय॑णं दे॒व॒म॒क्षरं॑ पर॒मं पदम् ।
वि॒श्वतः॒ पर॑मान्नि॒त्यं॒ वि॒श्वं ना॑राय॒णग्ं ह॑रिम् ।
विश्व॑मे॒वेदं पुरु॑ष॒-स्तद्विश्व-मुप॑जीवति ।
पतिं॒ विश्व॑स्या॒त्मेश्व॑र॒ग्ं॒ शाश्व॑तग्ं शि॒व-मच्युतम् ।
ना॒राय॒णं म॑हाज्ञे॒यं॒ वि॒श्वात्मा॑नं प॒राय॑णम् ।
ना॒राय॒णप॑रो ज्यो॒ति॒रा॒त्मा ना॑राय॒णः प॑रः ।
ना॒राय॒णपरं॑ ब्र॒ह्म॒ तत्त्वं ना॑राय॒णः प॑रः ।
ना॒राय॒णप॑रो ध्या॒ता॒ ध्या॒नं ना॑राय॒णः प॑रः ।
यच्च॑ कि॒ञ्चिज्जगत्स॒र्वं॒ दृ॒श्यते॓ श्रूय॒तेஉपि॑ वा ॥
अन्त॑र्ब॒हिश्च॑ तत्स॒र्वं॒ व्या॒प्य ना॑राय॒णः स्थि॑तः ।
अनन्त॒मव्ययं॑ क॒विग्ं स॑मु॒द्रेஉन्तं॑ वि॒श्वशं॑भुवम् ।
प॒द्म॒को॒श-प्र॑तीका॒श॒ग्ं॒ हृ॒दयं॑ चाप्य॒धोमु॑खम् ।
अधो॑ नि॒ष्ट्या वि॑तस्या॒न्ते॒ ना॒भ्यामु॑परि॒ तिष्ठ॑ति ।
ज्वा॒ल॒मा॒लाकु॑लं भा॒ती॒ वि॒श्वस्याय॑त॒नं म॑हत् ।
सन्तत॑ग्ं शि॒लाभि॑स्तु॒ लम्ब॒त्याकोश॒सन्नि॑भम् ।
तस्यान्ते॑ सुषि॒रग्ं सू॒क्ष्मं तस्मिन्॓ स॒र्वं प्रति॑ष्ठितम् ।
तस्य॒ मध्ये॑ म॒हान॑ग्निर्-वि॒श्वार्चि॑र्-वि॒श्वतो॑मुखः ।
सोஉग्र॑भु॒ग्विभ॑जन्ति॒ष्ठ॒-न्नाहा॑रमज॒रः क॒विः ।
ति॒र्य॒गू॒र्ध्वम॑धश्शा॒यी॒ र॒श्मय॑स्तस्य॒ सन्त॑ता ।
स॒न्ता॒पय॑ति स्वं दे॒हमापा॑दतल॒मस्त॑कः ।
तस्य॒मध्ये॒ वह्नि॑शिखा अ॒णीयो॓र्ध्वा व्य॒वस्थि॑तः ।
नी॒लतो॑-यद॑मध्य॒स्था॒द्-वि॒ध्युल्ले॑खेव॒ भास्व॑रा ।
नी॒वार॒शूक॑वत्त॒न्वी॒ पी॒ता भा॓स्वत्य॒णूप॑मा ।
तस्या॓ः शिखा॒या म॑ध्ये प॒रमा॓त्मा व्य॒वस्थि॑तः ।
स ब्रह्म॒ स शिवः॒ स हरिः॒ सेन्द्रः॒ सोஉक्ष॑रः पर॒मः स्व॒राट् ॥
ऋतग्ं स॒त्यं प॑रं ब्र॒ह्म॒ पु॒रुषं॑ कृष्ण॒पिङ्ग॑लम् ।
ऊ॒र्ध्वरे॑तं वि॑रूपा॑क्षं॒ वि॒श्वरू॑पाय॒ वै नमो॒ नमः॑ ॥
ॐ ना॒रा॒य॒णाय॑ वि॒द्महे॑ वासुदे॒वाय॑ धीमहि । तन्नो॑ विष्णुः प्रचो॒दया॓त् ॥
ॐ शान्तिः॒ शान्तिः॒ शान्तिः॑ ॥
Narayana Suktam in Telugu:
సహస్ర శీర్షం దేవం విశ్వాక్షం విశ్వశంభువమ్ ।
విశ్వై నారాయణం దేవం అక్షరం పరమం పదమ్ ॥ 1 ॥
విశ్వతః పరమాన్నిత్యం విశ్వం నారాయణం హరిమ్ ।
విశ్వం ఏవ ఇదం పురుషః తద్విశ్వం ఉపజీవతి ॥ 2 ॥
పతిం విశ్వస్య ఆత్మా ఈశ్వరం శాశ్వతం శివమచ్యుతమ్ ।
నారాయణం మహాజ్ఞేయం విశ్వాత్మానం పరాయణమ్ ॥ 3 ॥
నారాయణ పరో జ్యోతిరాత్మా నారాయణః పరః ।
నా రాయణ పరం బ్రహ్మ తత్త్వం నారాయణః పరః ।
నారాయణ పరో ధ్యాతా ధ్యానం నారాయణః పరః ॥ 4 ॥
యచ్చ కించిత్ జగత్ సర్వం దృశ్యతే శ్రూయతేఽపి వా ।
అంతర్బహిశ్చ తత్సర్వం వ్యాప్య నారాయణః స్థితః ॥ 5 ॥
అనన్తం అవ్యయం కవిం సముద్రేన్తం విశ్వశంభువమ్ ।
పద్మ కోశ ప్రతీకాశం హృదయం చ అపి అధోముఖమ్ ॥ 6 ॥
అధో నిష్ఠ్యా వితస్త్యాన్తే నాభ్యామ్ ఉపరి తిష్ఠతి ।
జ్వాలామాలాకులం భాతీ విశ్వస్యాయతనం మహత్ ॥ 7 ॥
సన్తతం శిలాభిస్తు లమ్బత్యా కోశసన్నిభమ్ ।
తస్యాన్తే సుషిరం సూక్ష్మం తస్మిన్ సర్వం ప్రతిష్ఠితమ్ ॥ 8 ॥
తస్య మధ్యే మహానగ్నిః విశ్వార్చిః విశ్వతో ముఖః ।
సోఽగ్రవిభజంతిష్ఠన్ ఆహారం అజరః కవిః ॥ 9 ॥
తిర్యగూర్ధ్వమధశ్శాయీ రశ్మయః తస్య సన్తతా ।
సన్తాపయతి స్వం దేహమాపాదతలమాస్తకః ।
తస్య మధ్యే వహ్నిశిఖా అణీయోర్ధ్వా వ్యవస్థితాః ॥ 10 ॥
నీలతోయద-మధ్యస్థ-ద్విద్యుల్లేఖేవ భాస్వరా ।
నీవారశూకవత్తన్వీ పీతా భాస్వత్యణూపమా ॥ 11 ॥
తస్యాః శిఖాయా మధ్యే పరమాత్మా వ్యవస్థితః ।
స బ్రహ్మ స శివః స హరిః స ఇన్ద్రః సోఽక్షరః పరమః స్వరాట్ ॥ 12 ॥
ఋతం సత్యం పరం బ్రహ్మ పురుషం కృష్ణ పిఙ్గలమ్ ।
ఊర్ధ్వరేతం విరూపాక్షం విశ్వరూపాయ వై నమో నమః ॥ 13 ॥
ఓం నారాయణాయ విద్మహే వాసుదేవాయ ధీమహి ।
తన్నో విష్ణుః ప్రచోదయాత్ ॥
ఓం శాంతి శాంతి శాంతిః ॥