Shiva Shiva Shiva

Shiva Meditating

Why not chant Shiva, Shiva, Shiva and rid yourselves of the fears and problems of life ?’ says the poet-composer Tyagaraja in this beautiful kriti.

Tyagaraja was a great devotee of Rama and though many of his Kritis are in worship of his ishta daivam, he also sang in praise of Ganesh, Parvati, Vishnu and Shiva. Tyagaraja spent a lot of time in Tiruvaiyaru and wrote a number of kritis in praise of the presiding deity of this temple town, Shiva in the form of Panchanatheeswarar or Aiyaarappar. Shiva Shiva Shiva, set to Raga Pantuvarali (Kamavardani) is one of them.  See footnote for lyrics and translation. To know more about the raga, click here.

I really enjoyed this very brisk rendering of the kriti by Neyveli Santhanagopalan (b. 1963) in the recent Margazhi Maha Utsavam on Jaya TV. I was particularly taken by his kalpana swarams (improvisation) which are a credit to his rigorous and intellectual style of music. I wish I had the technical knowledge to fully appreciate it!

Alternate link : Click here and download song 4 (needs free membership of

For an instrumental version, listen to this unusual presentation by the very talented violinist Kunnakudi Vaidyanathan (1935-2008).

Footnote (Lyrics) :

shiva shiva shiva enarAdA

(Ori) bhavabhaya bAdala naNacukO rAdA

charaNam 1
kAmAdula dega kOsi para bhAmala parula dhanamula rOsi pAmaratvamu eDabAsi ati nEmamutO bilvArcana jEsi

charaNam 2
sajjana gaNamula gAnci Ori mujjagadIshvarulani mati nenci lajjAdula dolaginca tana hrj-jalajamunanu tA pUjinci

charaNam 3
Agamamula nutiyinci bahu bAgulEni bhAsalu cAlinci bhAgavatulO pOSinci Ori tyAgarAja sannutuDani yenci


Why not  chant Shiva, Shiva, Shiva and rid yourselves of the fears and problems of life ?

After removing lust and passion, after removing the desire of other’s women and wealth, after removing ignorance, worship Shiva diligently with Bilva leaves

After seeking out the company of good people, after worshipping them as Lord Shiva of the three worlds, after driving away shyness, worship Shiva devotedly who is in the lotus of your heart.

After learning the ways of worship, after avoiding fruitless talk, after serving devotees, hail Shiva who is worshipped by Tyagaraja.

For notation, click here.



Filed under Carnatic Music, Compositions in Telugu, Kunnakudi Vaidyanathan, Neyveli Santhanagopalan, Tyagaraja

2 responses to “Shiva Shiva Shiva

  1. Filmbuff

    Hi Suja
    Wish u a happy new year 2012! I have heard this composition sung by Priya Sisters.

    Neyveli Santhangopalan performed at the Sydney Music Festival last year – it was a treat to hear him.

    Like the cleveland festival in Ohio in march, there is an annual carnatic music festival in Sydney in June every year when eminent artists from India perform over 3 days

    • Thank you very much, I wish you the same! The Sydney music festival sounds interesting..I am not normally in Australia in June but if I happen to be there, I will make it a point to visit Sydney for the festival. I still dream of making it to the Chennai festival one year…

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