Why Did Lord Rama Worship Lord Siva ?

Why did Lord Ramachandra worship Siva?

He (Lord Krsna and Lord Rama) likes to worship His devotee. Sometimes the father takes the child on his shoulder. Does it mean the child is more important than the father?

They say [in] the Valmiki Ramayana, there is no such incidence as Ramacandra worships Siva. It is later on, interpretation. But even if He does so, what is the wrong here? (room conversation, Dec 23, 1975 Mumbai)

Mahabharata, Shanti Parva (12.328.5 onwards, dialogue between Lord Krishna and Arjuna):
brAhme rAtrikShaye prApte tasya hy amitatejasaH prasAdAtprAdurabhavatpadmaM padmanibhekShaNa tatra brahmA samabhavatsa tasyaiva prasAdajaH
In the brahma muhurta, at the end of the night, due to the mercy of the extremely brilliant Lord, a lotus emerged from His navel and in that lotus, Brahma was born, ofcourse, due to His grace.
ahnaH kShaye lalAtAchcha suto devasya vai tathA krodhAviShTasya sa~njaGYe rudraH saMhAra kArakaH etau dvau vibudhashreShThau prasAdakrodhajau smR^itau
At the end of the day, the Lord [present as antaryAmi of Brahma *] created Rudra out of krodha-guna, to enable him to be the 'samhara-karta'. Thus, these two 'fine-among-wise', Brahma and Rudra, are known to have been born out of grace and anger respectively.
* This interpretation is necessary because in the later sections of Moksadharma, Brahma addresses Rudra as a son.


tadAdeshita panthAnau sR^iShTi saMhAra kArakau nimittamAtraM tAvatra sarvaprAni varapradau
Thus, they carry out the instructed tasks of creation and destruction. However, they, the givers of boons to all the creatures, are just the agents.


kapardI jatilo mundaH shmashAnagR^ihasevakaH ugravratadharo rudro yogI tripuradAruNaH dakShakratuharashchaiva bhaga netraharastathA
[Rudra has] braided hair with knot of an ascetic and rest of the head bald. He dwells in the home of graveyard, steadfast on vigorous penance as a yogi. He is ferocious to Tripurasuras, destroyed Daksayajna and took away the eyes of Bhaga.


nArAyaNAtmako GYeyaH pANDaveya yuge yuge
O Arjuna, know that in every yuga, Rudra is 'nArAyaNAtmaka'. (This phrase can mean: one whose indweller is Narayana, one who is always immersed in Narayana.)
tasmin hi pUjyamAne vai devadeve maheshvare sampUjito bhavetpArtha devo nArAyaNaH prabhuH
It is the Lord, the prabhu, the Narayana *IN* Maheshvara (the worshipable, the lord of the devas), who is actually worshiped.

ahamAtmA hi lokAnAM vishvAnAM pANDunandana tasmAdAtmAnamevAgre rudraM sampUjayAmyaham yadyahaM nArchayeyaM vai IshAnaM varadaM shivam AtmAnaM nArchayetkashchiditi me bhAvitaM manaH
O son of Pandu, I am, indeed, the Atma, the indweller of this universe and the worlds. Therefore, I worship myself first, even when I worship Rudra. If I did not worship Rudra, the bestower of boons, in such a way (i.e., worshiping the indwelling Lord first), some would not worship Me, the indwelling Lord, at all - this is my opinion.


mayA pramANaM hi kR^itaM lokaH samanuvartate pramAnAni hi pUjyAni tatastaM pUjayAmyaham
Whatever I follow and give due worth as a pramaNa, the world follows that. Such pramanas have to be duly followed; therefore I follow them.


yastaM vetti sa mAM vetti yo.anu taM sa hi mAm anu rudro nArAyaNashchaiva sattvamekaM dvidhAkR^itam loke charati kaunteya vyakti sthaM sarvakarmasu
Whoever knows him, knows Me. Whoever follows him, follows Me. (Though) the world, in all its actions, worships two gods, Rudra and Narayana, it is actually one only who is worshiped.
na hi me kenachid deyo varaH pANDavanandana iti sa~ncintya manasA purANaM vishvamIshvaram putrArthaM ArAdhitavAn AtmAnaM aham AtmanA
O Son of Pandu, there is, of course, nobody who can grant Me boons. Knowing that well, I worhip Myself, Who am the beginningless and universal power, known as Sarveshvara, for the sake of getting sons.


na hi viShNuH pranamati kasmai chidvibudhAya tu R^ita AtmAnameveti tato rudraM bhajAmyaham


Indeed Vishnu does not bow to any one and [even when He bows to Himself], for what sake, but for the sake of showing the path to the wise. Therefore, it is the truth that I worship myself even when I worship Rudra.



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  • Volunteer

    First of all, regarding Lord Ram worshiped Shiva or not, what I have heard from HH Radhanath Swami Maharaj is that he did worship Lord Shiva.

    Regarding why he did so... aacharayas explain it in this way. Lord Shiva is a great devotee of Lord Krishna and he is always chanting his holy names and is in deep deep meditation. The devotees are very eager to serve the Lord and so as the Lord is also very eager to serve his devotees. But it is not a good etiquette that a servant gets served from the Master. So, Lord takes the advantage of his incarnations where he appeared as Human being to serve his devotees. Such examples are, Lord Ram Worshiping Lord Shiva, Lord Krishna studying under Sandipani muni and serving him in his aashram. Lord Krishna carrying the chapels of his father Nanda Maharaj on his head, etc... Now the question arises weather one should also worship Shiva and other demi gods or not???? And the answer what aacharyas have given is that we can approach them to help us in progressing in our spiritual life and not ask for any material benedictions. In one of the lecture on the Ganesh chaturthi day, Maharaj said that we can pray to Lord Ganesh to remove obstacles in the path of our devotion to Krishna because Ganesh is known as Vigna vinashaka - remover of the obstacles and he is the son of great devotee Couple, Shiva and Parvathi (Maya devi).

    Hari bol!!!

    • Hare Krishna, prabhu'

      Your explanation (from what you heard from Radhanath Swami) is the truth. Thank you for this. Hare Krishna!

    • While praying to gods like Ganesha, Karthikeya, Devi we should ask for devotion to lord krishna and not hank only on material benedictions.

      Ganesha is empowered to remove obstacles and show the dharma. So we can pray to him to remove all obstacles in krishna conscious service and show the dharma when we are confused.

      Karthikeya is empowered to control emotions/senses and show the inner light of knowledge. So we can pray to him to help us direct our senses/emotions in service of krishna and help direct us to the krishna paramatma within.

      Devi is empowered to manage the maya. So we can pray for her grace to direct us to yogamaya of krishna, increase our love for krishna and protect us like a mother in this harsh material world.

      Thus each god can be prayed with krishna as the objective in mind. All material benedictions in right quantity and quality required for us to serve krishna will fall in place.

      ||harE krishnA|| ||shri krishnAh sharanam mama||

  • Volunteer

    In Padma Purana, Uttara Khanda, Lord Vishnu also tells Shiva-

    'O powerful Rudra,in every age in My different incarnations I too shall worship you to delude the demons. Following these doctrines,they(demons and theists) will undoubtedly fall down.'

    • hw by worshipping Lord Shiva ,Lord Vishnu can delude the demon??

      and hw come using this way .....the demon will undoubtedly fall down?? in which way??how??

      plz explain prabhu...hare krishna!!

      • Dhyanlan ji! Hare Krishna

        It is explained in Padma Purana and It is posted in one of the posts of www.fb.com/SivaVaishnava.

        Lord Rudra pretends to live as outcaste. He spreads tamasic scriptures which delude those who envy Lord Visnu. By following this superficial Rudra, one is sure to fall from Vedic standard and then it is easier to get reasons to kill that demon or to free earth from the burden of these ungodly people. Lord makes some reasons to clear the demons and so he incarnates to protect the devotees.

        JAI HO

    • Hari Bol Prabhu jee!

      The line from Padma Purana is eye opening. However, my curious heart wants to know the top, bottom, left and right of quoted words. Could you please elaborate a little more, if it was a lila or was it surrender or something else like mutual appreciation? I am more confused as I have not found instace of where Sri Hari says 'I shall worship anyone else' or Shiva/Devi saying that they will worship Hari and his forms. Please guide me Prabhujee. I seek your guidance.

      Your servant,


      • hare krishna prabhu...u said u doulcnt fine instace of Hari saying that i shall wprship anyone?? how come..bcoz Lord says in Padma purana('O powerful Rudra,in every age in My different incarnations I too shall worship you to delude the demons. Following these doctrines,they(demons and theists) will undoubtedly fall down.') and there are many instances too in Srimad Bhagavatam.where He love to worship His devotees!!! thats is rasa exchange between pure devotee and Lord...!!! even unrealisingly devotee accept the worship of Lord...by His influential potency maya!!! so that rasa exhange could occur...where we will accept Him as our disciple...son....boyfriend....and so on!!!

  • Volunteer

    Hare Krishna Prabhuji, Danadavat pranam. All glories to Srila Prabhupada

    Nice  article, thanks for posting.

    I would only like to say again

    "Lord Rama worships Lord Shiva is what we found in Tulshi Das Ramayana, not the original Valmiki Ramayana" . Ramayana means Valmiki Ramayana, not others interpolated Ramayana, Hence Lord Rama ever worshipped Lord Shiva rejects in first place.

    your aspiring servant

    Hari Bol

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