Sri Subrahmanya Bhujangam is a stotra composed by Sri Adi Sankaraacharya at Thiruchendur ( presently located in TamilNadu, India). When Sri Sankara meditated upon Sri Subrahmanya at this temple, he became aware of the self luminous light shining in his heart and words came out his mouth extemporaneously in the bhujanga metre. It is also said that Achaarya then actually saw the Adisesha worshipping the Lord and hence, adopted the bhujanga metre.
Sri Subrahmanya Bhujangam is a hymn is addressed to Lord Subrahmanya, the presiding deity of Tiruchendur, in the south-east coast of India, off the district of Tirunelveli. Adi Sankara composed this hymn of thiry three verses, in the peculiar Bhujanga metre, noted for its sinuous movement like that of a serpent. The hymn is full of piety, spiritual exaltation and ecstasy.
It also reveals the efficacy of praise, prayer and meditation on Subrahmanya. This hymn is considered as an eulogy of extraordinary merit.
- Sada balaroopapi vighnadhi hanthri, mahadanthi vaktrapi panchasyamanya
vidheendhradhi mrigya ganeshabhidhame, vidhattham shriyam kapi kalyanamurthi :
Though a mere child, he annihilates mountainous obstacles. Though endowed with an elephant’s face, he is most dear to Siva, the Panchasya (which word also means a lion.) He is sought after by gods, such as Brahma and Indra. May the benevolent Lord known by the name Ganesha bless me with wealth.
- na janami padhyam, na janami gadhyam, na janami shabdam, na janami charttham
chideka shadasya hridhi dhyothathe me, mukhanis saranthe giraschapi chitram
I neither know the sound nor sense. Neither prose nor poetry. Yet when the One Intelligence glows in my heart, with his six shining faces, words cascade from my mouth so effortlessly.
- mayuradhiroodam mahavakyagudam manoharideham mahachittageham
mahidevadevam mahavedabhavam mahadevabalam bhaje lokapalam
The peacock mounted lord is the secret shrouded in the mystic formula. His body captivates our minds with its beauty. He is resident in the mighty souled men. I serve the guardian of the worlds, the deity of brahmins, object of Vedas and the dear son of Mahadeva.
- yadha sannidhanam gatha manavame, bhavam bodhiparam gathasthe thadhaiva
ithi vyanjayan sindhutheere ya aaste, thameede pavitram parashaktiputram
“When men reach my abode on the shores of this sea, they have already crossed the life’s sea of strife.” Thus the lord seems to proclaim from his coastal shrine. I praise this sacred Son of the Divine Mother.
- yathabdhes tharanga layam yanthi thunga, thatthaiva padha sannidhou sevyamane
itheevormi panktheer nrinam darshayantham, sada bhavaye hrithsaroje guham tham
‘Tides arise in the sea, glide towards the shore and then break into froth and foam. So too my devotees’ dangers shall vanish.” The Lord seems to say so. May I ever meditate on him in the core of my heart.
- girou mannivase nara yedhi rada :, thadha parvathe rajathe thedhiruda :
itheeva bruvan gandha shailadhirudah :, sadevo mudhe me sada shanmukhostu
May the lord of six faces ever bring me joy. Seated on the Gandhamadana mountain, he declares that those who have climbed to his hill shrines, have scaled the silver hills, the Kailas, as well.
- mahambodhitheere mahapapachore, muneendranukoole sugandhakhya shaile
guhayam vasantham svabhasa lasantham, janarthim harantham shrayamo guham tham
On the shores of the great ocean which steals away the sins of the devotees, stands the Sugandha hills, the most favourable site for the sages to perform their penance! Thou resides there to destroy the worries of the devotees! O self-luminous Lord who is present in the cave of the heart! I adore Thee!.
- lasat swarna gehai nrinam kamadohe, sumasthoma sanchanna manikya manche
samudyath sahasrarka thulyaprakasham, sada bhavaye kartikeyam suresham
In a radiant golden bedroom, on a cot set with rubies and covered on all sides with sweet smelling flowers, Thou art seated with the effulgence of a thousand suns! Thou art the answer to every desire of the heart and Thou fulfils the righteous desires of Thy devotees! Thou art the Lord of Devas and son of the Lord of the universe! O Kartikeya I meditate on Thee!.
- ranat hamsake manjuleth yanthashone, manohari lavanya peeyusha poorne
manash : – shatpadho me bhava klesha taptha :, sada modatham skanda te pada padme
Let the mind (like a bee) which is burdened with domestic troubles become happy by hovering around Thy lotus feet which is adorned with the jingling ringlets made of rings and beads, red in color indicating grace, filled with the nectar of beauty which attracts the minds of the devotees.
- suvarnabha divyam barodh bhasa manam, kvanath kinkini mekhala shobha manam
lasad dhemapattena vidhyotha manam, katim bhavaye skanda te deepya manam
Oh! Skanda, I meditate on Thy waist which is covered by a gold coloured cloth, shining with a string of ringing bells and beads, wearing a shining gold belt over the golden silk cloth, and which is by itself self-resplendent.
- pulindesha kanya ghana bhoga thunga, sthana lingana saktha kashmeera ragam
namasyamyaham tarakare tavorah :, svabhakaa vane sarvada sanuragam
Oh! conqueror of Tarakasura! By embracing Valli’s (hunter’s daughter) well-developed breast ornated with saffron, Thy chest became red coloured, thereby manifesting your eternal grace towards devotees. And such a chest I adore.
- vidhou kluptha dhandan svaleela dhri thandan, nirasthebha shundan dvishath kaladhandan
hathendhrari shandan jagatrana shoundan, sada te prachandan shraye bahu dhandan
Oh! Shanmukha! Thy arms punished Brahma, Thy arms govern the world as Thy play; Thy arms killed Soorapadma and other demons who are enemies of Indra; Thy arms are matchless in protecting the Universe, and Thy arms are a terror to Thine enemies. I worship Thy twelve arms which do all these things effortlessly.
- sada sharada : shan mrugangka yadhisyu :, samudyantha eva stthithash cheth samanthath
sadapoorna bimba : kalankaishcha heena :, tada tvan mukhanam bruve skanda samyam
What can I compare to Thy six faces! If there be six full moons free from blemishes and if those moons be ever shining on all sides, even then they would be no match to your effulgent faces.
- sphuran mandahasai : sahamsani chanchath, kataksha valeebhringa sanghojvalani
sudhasyandhi bimba dharani shasoono, tava lokaye shanmukham bhoruhani
Oh! Son of Parameshwara, I see Thy six smiling faces shining like a group of swans, having gleaming side glances ever moving like a row of bees and with red lips overflowing with nectar.
- vishaleshu karnantha dheergesh vajasram, dayas yandhishu dvadha shas veekshaneshu
mayeeshath katakshas : sakruth pathi tashcheth, bhavethe dayasheela ka nama hani :
Oh! Son of Parameshwara! Oh Merciful Lord! When Thou hast twelve broad long eyes extending upto ears, what will Thou lose by casting that side glance for a moment (on me)? .
- suthangodhbhavo mesi jeevethi shad dha, japanmantra meesho mudha jigrathe yan
jagad bhara bhridbhyo jagannatha thebhya :, kireeto jvalebhyo namo mastakebhya
Oh! Lord of the Universe! I offer my prostration to Thy six heads wearing crowns with brilliant rubies which protect the welfare of creatures, which were smelt by Parameshwara with joy uttering six times the mantra “Child Thou were born of me, May Thou live long”.
- sphuradh ratna keyoora harAbhi rama, chalath kundala shri-lasadh kandabhaga
katou peethavasa kare charushakti, purasthan ma mastham purares thanooja
Oh Kumara! Son of Lord Parameshwara (who destroyed Tripura)! With garlands of brilliant rubies on Thy shoulders and chest, with bright cheeks shining with pendants dangling from Thy ears, wearing silk garment around Thy waist, and with Velin Thy hand, Oh! Lord appear before me (It is said that Lord appeared before Acharya when he sung this stotra)!.
- ihayahi vatsethi hasthan prasarya, aah-vayath-yadha-rach-shankare mathu rankath
samuthpathya thatham shrayantham kumaram, harashlishta gathram bhaje balamoorthim
When Lord Shankara called Thee affectionately with arms extended, Thou hurriedly rose from Mother’s lap and rushed into Shankara’s arms who embraced Thee affectionately. I meditate on such a Lord Kumara.
- kumaresha soono guhaskanda sena, pathe shaktipAne mayurAdhiruda
pulindhathmaja kantha bhaktharthi harin, prabho tarakare sada raksha mam tvam
Oh Kumara! Oh Son of Lord of the Universe! One who shines in the cave of the heart as Guha! Oh Skanda! Oh Lord of the Devas’ Army! Oh Wielder of the weapon Vel which is the svarupa of Parashakti! One who rides on the peacock chariot! Oh Beloved of the Hunter’s daughter (Valli)! Destroyer of the sins of your devotees! Enemy of Tarakasura! Oh Lord protect me!.
- prashan thendriye nashta samngnye vicheshte, kaphod karivaktre bhayoth kampi gathre
prayanon mukhe mayyanathe thadhaneem, drutham me dhayalo bhavagre guham tham
Hail Guha, Dayalo. During the last moments of my life, when I will have lost control of my senses, when I will have lost consciousness, when I will be unable move my limbs, when I will be emitting foam of phlegm, when my body will be trembling with fear of death, when I will have none to protect me, Thou must hasten to give me darshan.
- krithan thasya dhooteshu chandeshu kopath, daha chindhi bhindheethi mam tharja yatsu
mayuram samaruhya mabhairi thitvam, purash shakti panir mamayahi sheegram
Oh! Lord, when ferocious messengers of the God of Death come to torture me angrily shouting, “Burn him, Kill him”, Oh! Lord Thou must hasten to appear before me, riding on your peacock,carrying Shaktivel, to encourage me not to be afraid.
- pranam yasa kruth pada yosthe pathitva, prasadya prabho prarthaye (a)nekavaram
na vaktum kshamoham thadhaneem krupapdhe, na karyanthakale mana gapyu peksha
Oh Merciful Lord! I am prostating to Thy feet often to secure Thy blessings. Oh treasure house of mercy! I offer prayers to please Thee. Thou should not be indifferent towards me during my last moments. At that time I may not have the control and energy to pray to Thee!.
- sahasranda bhoktha tvaya shooranama, hathas tarakas simhavaktrascha dhaitya
mamanthar hridhistham manaklesha mekam, na hamsi prabho kim karomi kva yami
O Lord! Thou hast slain the demon Soora who ruled the thousand universes! So were the demons Taarakasura and Simhavaktra. But Lord,why have you not killed the demon called mental worry which haunts my mind? When it is afflicting me, what will I do? And where will I go [other than you for help] ? .
- aham sarvada dukkha bhara vasanno, bhavan deenabandhus tva dhanyam na yache
bhavadh bhaktirodham sada kluptha badham, mamadhim drutham nasha yo masuta tvam
Oh Son of Uma! I am always troubled by the mental worries. Thou art the friend of helpless! I approach none but you for saving me. Quickly destroy my mental worries as they interfere with my devotion towards Thee!.
- apasmara kushta kshayarsha prameha, jvaronmadha gulmadhi roga mahantha
pishachashcha sarve bhavatpatra bhoothim, vilokya kshanath tarakare dravanthe
Oh Conqueror of Taraka! Severe epilepsy, leprosy, consumption, lung diseases, venereal diseases, fevers, mental diseases of all types, they run away the moment they see Thy vibhuti contained in a leaf.
- drishi skandamoorthih shrutou skandakeerthih, mukhe me pavitram sada tach-charitram
kare tasya krityam vapus tasya bhrutyam, guhe santu leena mama shesha bhava
Always may I have before my eyes the murthi of Lord Skanda! Always let my ears hear only the praises of Lord Skanda! Always let my mouth sing the praise of Lord Skanda! Always let my hands be of service to the Lord! Always let my body is a servant to the Lord! Let my limbs, thoughts and actions be devoted to Skanda!.
- muneena muthaho nrinam bhakti bhajam, abheeshta pradha santhi sarvatra deva
nrina manthya janam api svartha dhane, guha devam anyam najane najane
In all the worlds there are Devas to grant the boons of sages and great bhaktas. But for the lowly and ordinary devotees, I know not of any other Deity to protect them except Guha!.
- kalathram sutha bandhuvarga pashurva, naro vatha naree gruhe ye madheeya
yajantho namanthah stuvantho bhavantham, smaran thascha te santu sarve kumara
Oh Lord Kumara! Let my wife, children, relatives, friends, other men and women in our household, venerate Thee! Praise Thee! And always be absorbed in Thy thoughts!.
- mriga pakshino dhamshaka ye cha dushtas, tatha vyadhayo bhadha ka ye madhange
bhavacchakti teekshnagra bhinnas sudhoore, vinashyantu te choornitha krouncha shaile
Oh! Destroyer of Krauncha Shaila! Let every thing that troubles my body, birds, beasts, insects, severe diseases, be pierced by Thy powerful weapon Vel and taken far away and destroyed.
- janithri pitha cha svaputra paradham, sahethe na kim devasenadhi natha
aham chathibalo bhavan loka thatha, kshamasvaparadham samastham mahesha
Do not the parents overlook the faults of their children? Oh! Chief of the army of Devas! I am a small child. Thou art the Father of the Universe. Oh Mahesha! Forgive all my faults.
- namah kekine shaktaye chapi tubhyam, namah chhaga tubhyam namah kukkutaya
namah sindhave sindhu deshaya tubhyam, punah skanda moorthe namaste namostu
I bow to Thee, O Peacock (the symbol of Vedas)! I bow to Thee, O Shakti Weapon (Vel is Parashakti herself), I bow to Thee, O Sheep (the symbol of maya tattvam), I bow to Thee, O Rooster (the symbol of Ego), I bow to Thee, O Ocean (the symbol of ananda), I bow to Thee, O Tiruchendur Shrine, I bow to Thee, O Lord Skanda! I bow to Thee again and again! Let all my prostrations reach Thee!.
- jayA nanda bhooman jaya para dhaman, jaya mogha keerthe jaya nanthamoorthe
jaya nanda sindho jaya shesha bandho, jaya tvam sada mukti dhanesha soono
O Source of ananda, reveal Thyself! O Embodiment of boundless effulgent light, reveal Thyself! O Lord! who has all pervading glory, reveal Thyself! O Embodiment of bliss, reveal Thyself! O Lord, Thou art the ocean of bliss, reveal Thyself! O Lord who is the friend of all creatures, reveal Thyself! O Lord, Son of Parameshwara, Bestower of liberation, reveal Thy Glory to me and protect me!.
- bhujangakhya vritthena kluptham sthavam yah, pateth bhakti yuktho guham sam pranamya
suputran kalathram dhanam dheergamayuh, labheth skanda sayujya manthe narrassah.
That holy devotee, who prostrates to Lord Guha, reciting the Bhujanga stotra daily, with devotion, will be blessed with good sons, good wife, wealth and long life, and at end of his life, will attain eternal bliss with Lord Skanda.
In this hymn Sankara reveals the splendor, glory and Infinity of Subrahmanya at two levels. One is external and the other is internal.
The sacred shrine at Tiruchendur framed by hills and facing the sea with huge waves lashing its shore, represents the external power. And then there is the Indweller in each one of us, who is the over seer, permitter, Lord, Enjoyer and the Ruler. He represents the internal power who is the nearest and dearest friend of mankind.