By Swami Harshananda
Sometimes transliterated as: Mahesvara, MaheZvara, Maheshvara
Maheśvara literally means ‘the Great Lord’.
Maheśvara, an Apect of Śiva
‘Maheśvara’ is one of the names and aspects of Śiva. Iconographical works describe him as:
- Wearing a jaṭāmukuṭa, crown of matted hair
- Fair in complexion
- Adorned with the crescent moon on the head and having four arms
- Holding paraśu (axe) or taṅka (hammer) and mṛga (deer)
- Other two arms assuming the gestures of abhaya (protection) and varada (bestowal of boons)
- may be shown as having triśula (trident) ḍamaru (hand-drum), kapāla (skull-cup) and nāga (a serpent)
- has three eyes
- may also be shown as riding his bull along with his spouse Pārvatī and the two sons Gaṇeśa and Kārttikeya
Maheśvara, an Author
Maheśvara is also the name of a Dharmaśāstra writer who lived around CE 1550. He is the author of a commentary on the dāyabhāga system of dividing property.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore