Omkara: Dear swamiji, pranams. What is the significance and benefit of reciting shiva tandava stotram?
Swami Ram Swarup: My blessings to you, my son. Shiva tandav stotram matter does not exist in vedas. So, comments cannot be offered please. In the beginning of every creation, Almighty God generates the eternal knowledge of four Vedas in the heart of four Rishis for the benefit of all mankind. In this connection, I paste my article below. Vedas preach us to worship only one Formless, omnipresent, Almighty God who creates, nurses and destroys the universe.
God has made universe and blessed us with human body to do pious deeds to attain salvation only. He has not made any heaven or hell. All have to face the result of their deeds, good or bad here only, even by taking rebirth. (Rigved mantras 10/135/1,2 refer)
God has not only made universe but has also given knowledge of four Vedas where answers to your and everyone’s questions have been given. There are four Vedas:
1. Rig Veda – gives knowledge of science, matter of the universe like sun, moon, air, body etc., etc.
2. Yajurved – gives knowledge of all the deeds and duties to be performed by men, women, students, leaders, king, agriculturist etc., etc., etc.
3. Samved – gives knowledge how to worship God who gives peace and long happy life etc. In this way, details of Yoga philosophy, qualities, supreme deeds and nature of the God are also given.
4. Atharvaved – gives details of God, medical science and details of medicine etc.
Actually in four Vedas there is unlimited knowledge. Yajurved mantra 40/8 says that God is everywhere, is Almighty, formless, devoid of nervous system, purest, away from sins and does not have to face any result of any karmas (deeds), knows every soul, knows what is in everyone’s mind, no body has made God, but God creates universe, has given the eternal knowledge of four Vedas and always gives the said knowledge at the beginning of every universe to know the science and deeds to all concern. Similarly four Vedas say about God that God is an omnipresent, omniscient, formless, beyond imagination and beyond calculation. Actually God has unlimited qualities. There is only one God who creates, nurses, destroys the universe and recreates. Atharvaved mantra 4/1/1 also says that God gives the knowledge of Vedas at the beginning of the earth to four Rishis of non-sexual creation. And thereafter only public listens Vedas through Rishis- Munis as yet and become learned. Rig-Veda gives knowledge of Almighty, Yajurved gives knowledge of karmas (deeds), Samved tells about worship-Yoga philosophy and Atharvaved about medicines and God. Actually all Vedas commonly says about God also, so this is about Vedas in short. But the knowledge of Vedas is endless.
It is a fundamental law that knowledge is always given by somebody. Otherwise knowledge can’t be gained at any cost. If a new born baby is nursed well in a dense jungle and is not educated then he will not be able to gain any knowledge even if he becomes young or old. So we have to think about the origin of the knowledge prevalent in the world today. In this connection the Vedas themselves say that God gives this knowledge to four Rishis. As said by Rishi Patanjali in Yog shastra sutra 1/26, God is the first Guru of the four Rishis. Yajurved mantra 31/7 also refers. This is all in short about Vedas.
The Vedas are not a book, rather it is a knowledge originated in the heart of Rishis. At the time of beginning of the earth those Rishis preached Vedas by mouth and all others remembered the same orally. At that time there was no pen, pencil, paper, etc. This process of studying Vedas orally remained till Mahabharata time. Muni Vyas too remembered Vedas traditionally by heart. Then Muni Vyas for the first time wrote the Vedas on Bhoj patra about 5300 years ago. In 16th century when printing press came into existence then the Vedas were printed. Still Vedas are not those which have been printed but those which are preached by mouth by an Acharya/yogi and the printed Vedas are called Sanhita.
Now if somebody worships a statue etc., then it is their own creation please but Vedas deny. According to Vedas the best worship of the God is Yajyen for which all Vedas are self-proof. Yajurved mantra 31/16 says that the learned persons worship God by Yajyen.
So many people have asked me that most of the scholars/preachers of different religion state that their religion incorporates all matters of the world including science. What about Vedas? I wrote so many Ved Mantras describing science matters therein. For example, Yajurved Mantra 3/6 states
“Ayam Gauhu Swaha Pitram Puraha Prayan Mataram Prishnihi
This earth revolves around the Sun in the space and it also rotates on its own axis. Vedas are eternal like God because Vedas emanate from God. Now, according to Vedas, this present creation is about 1 Arab, 96 crores, 8 lakh 53,111 years old. So are theVedas but as said in Rigved Mantra 10/191/3 the present creation is same as was the previous one and this process of creation is eternal. So are the Vedas which emanate from eternal God. This all concludes that Vedas are the oldest in this creation also and no other book of science, maths or pertaining to spiritualism is written before Vedas.
Like the above example of rotation and revolution of earth, the significance of whole present science is mentioned in Vedas. We can see that whatever is happening in the universe, is all according to the Vedas. For example, occurrence of six seasons, actions of Sun, moon, process of death, birth, worship, yoga philosophy, atomic energy, agriculture, animal husbandry, knowledge of politics, administration, architecture, solar energy, knowledge of home appliances like mixer, grinder, business rules, about men, women, children, marriage, Brahmacharya, education, clothes etc., etc., i.e., knowledge right from a straw to Brahma is all in Vedas. God is Almighty and has unlimited powers. So through His power He is able to originate the knowledge of Vedas in the heart of four Rishis without pencil, paper, help of mouth or any other worldly assistance.
We, i.e., the whole world depends on Almighty God but God is forever independent. That is why, He is God. We are the souls who reside in human bodies. We need assistance of senses, perceptions, mind and body to do deeds but not God.
Nowadays, so many saints are writing books. What is the background to write their books? Background is clear that they have first studied or listened the preach from their Gurus, keeping aside the matter of truth or falsehood. And after studying or listening the same, they became able to write the books. So this is also fundamental law, based on which, the ancient Rishis first listened Vedas and when they became learned then only they wrote the Vedic books like Valmiki Ramayana, six shastras, Mahabharat (Bhagwad Geeta), Upanishads, etc., etc. So, first the knowledge of Vedas is initiated in the universe and afterwards other books come into existence.
Somebody may say that human beings have knowledge by their nature to create anything like books etc., but we see that the newly born baby who is nursed in a jungle, in the absence of knowledge of a learned person, he becomes incapable to do anything. Thus, he can’t be M.A, M.Sc, doctor etc. So there are two types of the words and meanings. First, eternal which are from Almighty God and second, natural made by human beings. Eternal word meanings are always from Vedas i.e., from God. After listening/studying Vedas, human beings become learned and then too based on their own natural knowledge, they make their own words and meanings, literature etc. But it is very much clear that in the absence of knowledge of Vedas, no one can become learned. Nowadays, also people live in dense jungle and do not lead a civilized life because they are not learned as cited above. Vedas are not sects because they emanate direct from God and God is one for all human beings. God creates sun, moon, air, water, food etc., which are meant for the best use of all human beings for their long, happy life, so are the Vedas.
So all human beings must accept Vedas as an eternal knowledge from God, for the benefit of whole creation.
There is only one God who is formless, creates, nurses and destroys the universe. He is Almighty and supreme, beyond description, beyond imagination and beyond calculation. He is omnipresent and omniscient. Divine qualities of Almighty God are described in eternal knowledge of Vedas. Vedas emanate direct from God. So all Hindus and others too believe in Vedas.
Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh are the names of one said God. God has no wives please because He is Almighty and needs no assistance etc. No one is above God please. All religions tell to worship God.
The creation is eternal and automatic. There is no date of creation of the following:
(A) Almighty God who is alive, immortal, formless, creates, nurses and destroys the universe. He never indulges in any maya, mahamaya, illusion and deeds (good or bad. Yajurveda Mantra 40/8 and Yog shastra Sutra 1/26 also refer)
(B) Soul: Soul is alive, the purest, away from sins etc. but illusion covers the soul due to which soul forgets his original form and hence remains in sorrows, problems etc.
C) Prakriti: Non-alive and has three qualities. i.e., Raj, tam, Satva. At a proper time, the power of God acts in prakriti and the universe is created. So the creation is eternal and automatic.
Raj, Tam and Satva are the three qualities of prakriti. When the said gunnas remain idle dormant i.e., do not work, then combination of these three gunnas(qualities) in dormant stage is called prakriti and this time is called “final destruction” of the universe. When an appropriate time comes, the creation is to be started again. Then the power of God works in the above three gunnas i.e., in the prakriti and immediately the creation starts. Rajo gunn is a sign of sensuousness etc., Tamo gunn signifies laziness and sato gunn signifies ego, pride. Our human body is also made of the said three gunnas.
Vedas tell that there are three eternal/immortal matters- first: Almighty God, second: souls, third: prakriti. Almighty God creates, nurses and destroys the universe and again creates it. The said process of creation is eternal/immortal/everlasting. Almighty God creates the universe from prakriti. When the raj, tam and satva gunnas of prakriti remain idle (dormant condition/inactive) then creation does not take place. At an appropriate time, a power of Almighty God acts in prakriti (i.e., in Raj, tam and satva gunnas). Immediately the process of creation starts and the first matter of prakriti is made which is called –Mahat i.e., mind; from Mahat- ahankar is made, from ahankar panch (5) tan matrayein, from panch (5) tanmatrayein, panch (5) mahabhoot are created. From panch mahabhoot, the entire matter of universe i.e., Sun, Moon air, water, our bodies, bodies of other living beings etc., are created. The whole creation is thus created from prakriti and remains still (in active) like a statue. This creation is called non-sexual creation. In the said creation, the young human bodies are created which are neither old nor babies. Then by the power of God, in the said bodies, breathing system (prann vaayu) starts operating. At last, God enters into the universe and immediately all the humans and other living beings become alive and start functioning. Similarly, the non-alive matters like Sun, moon, earth, air, water etc., start their respective functions.
Creation, Science, worldly matters etc., is not possible until the same is created by someone. Secondly, knowledge is attained when knowledge is imparted by someone.
Rigved mantra 10/129/ 1-6 throw light about creation that at that time, there was nothing and no living beings did exist. So there was no learned acharya who could give the knowledge to the newly created living beings like parents who educate the children to make them able to speak language and to know about the matters like crow, animals, chapati, ghee, sun, moon i.e., all matters of the world. See, if a newly born baby is managed to live in dense jungle and nursed well but he is not given education about the worldly matters etc. i.e., mathematics, science, animals, sun, moon etc., then even at the young age of 20-25, 30 years, he will not be able to speak any language and when he will be brought out of the cave of dense jungle and will be asked about the sun, moon, animals, birds before him, then he will not be able to reply because he was not given the said knowledge.
When we see towards sun, moon, air, space, human body etc. It is clearly understood that the said creation has not been made by any human being but Almighty God, from whom the knowledge of four Vedas emanates. In Vedas, the knowledge right from straw to Brahma has been mentioned. So in the beginning of non-sexual earth, the Vedas originated in the heart of four rishis: Agni, Vaayu, Aditya and Angira, and from the rishis the knowledge of science, deeds and worship along with every matter is being given to the public by which the public became educated scientist and wrote books, etc.
In Vedas as well as in fourth chapter of Yog Shastras of Rishi Patanjali, it is mentioned that those who do not believe in God are provided more and more facilities by nature and such people get spoiled etc.
On the contrary those who worship God, they naturally try to kill their desires and accordingly under the law, nature, help them to follow the true path to realize the God.
It is also pertinent to mention here that in Vedas, there is no mention of avtarwad or any proper noun, please. Vedas do not even contain any story or past, present or future life of anyone. Vedas contain knowledge i.e., entire science, form of deeds/duties and worship of God. Actually Vedas give knowledge right from straw to Brahma (God) of entire universe.
All four Vedas tell to worship a formless, Almighty, omnipresent, omniscient God who creates, nurses and destroys the universe. God was one, is one and shall ever remain one. He is unchangeable, unchallengeable and beyond description. He has unlimited qualities and thus unlimited names but is one. Because He is Almighty and needs no help of anyone to create, nurse and destroy the universe therefore no need to take avtar.
We cannot say first creation because creation, nursing and destruction and again creation, nursing and destruction is an eternal and everlasting process. Therefore its date cannot be fixed being eternal process.