Bhairava (Sanskrit: भैरव, lit. frightful) or Kala Bhairava is a Shaivite deity. In Shaivism, he is a powerful manifestation, or avatar, of Shiv Ji associated with annihilation. Generally in Hinduism, Bhairava is also called Dandapani (“[he who holds the] Danda in [his] hand”), as he holds a rod or Danda to punish sinners, and Swaswa, meaning “whose vehicle is a dog”.
THE STORY OF KAAL BHAIRAV
Numerous stories feature Lord Bhairava, the fierce and terrifying part of Lord Shiva. One of the most famous tales, which shows up in the Shiva Mahapurana, was an argument between Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. Lord Vishnu posed a question to Brahma about who the Supreme Creator of the Universe was. Hearing the query, Lord Brahma became slightly egoistic, as he was always honored as the Creator.
Moreover, he believed that since he had five heads like Lord Shiva, he could accomplish anything that Shiva could. He then started to copy the work of Shiva and started meddling with his daily tasks. Lord Shiva was tolerant for a while but later he grew impatient and could not bear Lord Brahma’s interference anymore.
He broke a tiny nail from his finger and threw it. This nail took on the avatar of Kaala Bhairava. The form proceeded straight to Brahma and cut off one of his heads. Therefore, Bhairava is usually depicted holding the skull of Brahma in one of his hands.
With this action, Lord Bhairava was able to fully overpower Lord Brahma and humble him, thereby ending his ego and blessing immediate enlightenment upon him. From then on, he was incredibly appreciative of Bhairava and bowed down before him, promising to work towards the benefits of the Universe.
There is another story that talks about how Lord Shiva himself conceived Bhairava. There was once a ferocious asura called Dahurasuran. After he performed rigorous penance, he was blessed with a boon that he could only be assassinated by a woman. Goddess Parvati assumed the form of Kali to kill him. After completing her task, her anger manifested as a child. Kali nourished her kid with her milk.
Witnessing this, Lord Shiva materialized and got both Kali and the child to fuse into him. From this avatar of Bhairava, Shiva showed up in all his eight forms of Ashtanga Bhairavas. Since the deity was the reason for Bhairava’s existence, the latter is occasionally called his son.
An altered version of the original tale has a slightly different take. When Lord Brahma humiliated Lord Shiva, the latter assumed the avatar of the ferocious Bhairava. He leaped out of Shiva’s Third Eye and chopped Brahma’s head off. His skull then got attached to Bhairava’s left palm.
Bhairava had to be penalized for cutting the holiest and scholarly Brahma’s head. To pay for the biggest sin of Brahmataya, Bhairava vowed to roam as a naked beggar with the skull serving as his begging container. He is eventually released from his sin when he arrives at the sacred city of Varanasi. There is a shrine devoted to Bhairava in this city.
Attributes of Kaal Bhairav
Trishul, Sword , Sickle, Vajra, Pinaka Bow, Pashupatastra.
Different forms of Kaal Bhairav
Mantra on Kaal Bhairav
śubhaṃ karoti kalyāṇam ārogyam dhanasaṃpadā |
śatrubuddhivināśāya dīpakāya namo’stu te ||
dīpo jyoti paraṃ brahma dīpo jyotirjanārdana: |
dīpo haratu me pāpaṃ saṃdhyādīpa namo’stu te ||
oṃ sarve bhavantu sukhinaḥ sarve santu nirāmayāḥ| sarve bhadrāṇi paśyantu mā kaścidduḥkhabhāgbhaveta|
oṃ śāntiḥ śāntiḥ śāntiḥ||
Om Aim Vagdevyai Vidmahe Kamarajaya Dhimahi।
Tanno Devi Prachodayat॥
Ya Devi Sarvabhuteshu Vidyarupena Samsthita।
Namastasyai Namastasyai Namastasyai Namo Namah॥
Om Arham Mukha Kamala Vasini Papatma Kshayamkari
Vad Vad Vagvadini Saraswati Aim Hreem Namah Svaha॥
Om Aim Hreem Shreem Vagdevyai sarasvatyai Namah॥