Naufal Khan takes you on a mind-bending journey across the Hinduverse in the fantasy series titled ‘The Secret of Shiva’ read an extract below,
The island of Mauritius may be tiny but there’s immense legendary power that lies deep in the heart of this third rock from Africa. Many of you may or may not know of the Shiv Puran — the holy text that details the life of Lord Shiva and Mother Parvati — but none of you knows about the hidden chapters of the Puran. These sacred chapters have been hidden for good reason and protected by a human family of an ancient lineage right here on Earth.
The Jyotirlinga or Jyotirlingam is a devotional representation of the Supreme God Shiva. Jyoti means ‘radiance’ and lingam the ‘Image or Sign’ of Shiva. The Jyotirlingas are regarded as the most powerful of lingams of Mahadev that have been around since ancient times. There are 12 lingas that are located in India but there are 52 other Jyotirlingas spread across the world hidden in plain sight. It is this ancient family that have been the guardians of the most sacred lingas of Lord Namasivaya for generations. Now the last living descendant of this bloodline is set on a course to change the path of humanity. It is present-day and something immaculate is about to happen that has never occurred before! The elephant God of the Hindu pantheon, Lord Ganesh, also known as Vinayagar, will descend upon Earth for the very first time and his presence on Earth is not a joyous one, as you will find out. Something has gone terribly awry on the heavenly planes and it is humanity that holds the key to fixing the problem. Lord Shiva and his consort Parvati have gone missing from their heavenly abode of Kailash and none of the celestial beings can figure out why. Lord Ganesh has assumed control of Kailash and attempts to commune with his beloved parents, but for some reason, they are not responding to him leaving the elephant-faced son of Lord Shiva stumped. There must be a reason for this unexpected event and even with his vast knowledge of all corners of the universe he simply cannot locate their presence anywhere not on Earth nor the heavenly planes.
Lord Ganesh heaves and huffs in disappointment over the dilemma that faces him as he lazes on his hammock. He forgets how powerful his breath is knocking over the entire herd of cows grazing below. Nandi, his father’s mount, sits above the herd that he is watching bellows at Lord Ganesh scolding him for disturbing the grazing cows. Lord Ganesh smiles at Nandi who always has a comical personality that comes out even when he is angry. Ganesh raises his open palm in the admission of guilt and materializes sweet offerings to appease the herd for his mistake. They calm down and go back to their grazing while Nandi looks over them. Ganesh wishes he could calm the rest of the Hindu pantheon like these gentle cows that easily as the Gods express anger and concern over their missing Mahadev and the divine Mother. The arguments over the disappearance of Shiva and Parvati have spread faster than the gossip of Indian aunties at a wedding at Kendra Hall in Durban. This period of Kaliyug is one of uncertainty for both humans and the gods, nobody has an inkling of what to expect next. The centre of Ganesh’s forehead begins to burn causing him to uses his large floppy ears to cool himself down as he ponders his next move while he eats up a juicy mango that his brother Lord Kartik had given him. Ganesh moves his focus over to the other celestial planes and sighs as he watches the troublesome gods arguing over the situation with Lord Vishnu.
After finishing up his snack, Lord Ganesh heaves his round belly off the hammock. Seating himself in his regal pose cross-legged, the son of Shiva transcends into deep meditation in hopes of connecting with his father, Mahadev.
While the elephant-faced deity transcends his physical being into the known & unknown — he is somewhat disturbed — he can hear ancient mantras being uttered. Focusing his powerful mind, Lord Ganesh begins tracing the origin of the sacred utterances. The elephant-faced Being had a glimmer of hope assuming that this was Mahadev or mom, Parvati but it wasn’t them. The verses being heard were specifically tuned in for him only as he noticed that none of the celestial beings was able to hear it. These are not the normal mantras that we are familiar with here on Earth, these mantras are secret verses of the Shiv Puran that were hidden from gods and humans alike.
Or so we thought they were.
The drone of these powerful mantras are flooding Ganesh’s thoughts, they rip through his sublime mind bringing his meditation to a halt. His mind started to look like a literal mess with these ancient mantras invading his personal train of thought. Someone or something is attempting to control of the elephant God. Lord Ganesh in a seated pose remains still as a floating Lotus flower, in absolute deep meditation; he raises his two additional arms and assumes his mudra pose of the heart to tame the tornado that ravages his mind.
Ganesh’s brother, Kartik begins feels a surge of unexpected Shakti pulse through his base chakra toward the centre of his chest. Kartik watches from a distance as his big-bellied brother battles with something benevolent in his mind.
Without a moment to waste Kartik grabs his Vel (spear) and spins it above his head as he mounts his Mayil (peacock) which moves swiftly in the direction of his brother, Ganesh. Lord Ganesh’s aura was shifting from a burning red to a subtle blue that matched the color of his father’s heavily poisoned throat. The ancient mantras that pulsed through Ganesh were darkly private recitations between Mother Parvati & his father Mahadev and they somehow had an effect on Lord Ganesh alone. He has never heard these sacred verses being recited by anyone other than Mother Parvati, but this recitation was neither in her voice nor that of Shiva. As Kartik shifts with lightning speed to Ganapati, Nandi tumbles off his comfortable patch of grass as the peacock whooshes over him leaving a flurry of feathers over his face. Nandi gets up and realizes something isn’t right; he quickly grabs his Trishul (spear) and hurries in the direction of Lord Kartik assuming that Ganesh was in trouble. As Kartik descends in front of Lord Ganesh, he scans the surrounds for danger but cannot see any. He turns around silently wondering if he should disturb his brother’s meditation. The burly Nandi stumbles behind Lord Kartik unable to break his speed crashing into Kartik’s peacock creating a stir. The Mayil is incredibly upset with Nandi and claws at him for an apology. Nandi smacks the peacock into silence realizing their little drama might disturb Lord Ganesh. Kartik and Nandi stand side by side in front of the sleepy son of Shiva and they’re confused as what to expect from him. Remaining absolutely silent they peer at their round-bellied God they regard as their brother and Lord. Even Kartik’s peacock peers over Nandi to get a peek at what’s going on. Kartik nudges Nandi quietly and whispers, “You go and wake him up. Last time I disturbed him and he flung me down to North Palani (in Tamil Nadu), every time he throws me down the humans build a temple in my name.”
Nandi huffs and turns to Kartik whispering, “You’re lucky Lord Muruga. Whenever he throws me I end up being flung into a pile cow dung.”
Suddenly, there’s a powerful clap of thunder on Kailash, it was so loud that the celestial beings on other planes reach for cover. Lord Ganesh breaks his meditation to find Nandi cowering from behind the peacock and Kartik cheering his peacock on as it teaches Nandi a lesson for crashing into him earlier. Ganesh heaves and smiles at the distraction that plays out in front of him but at the back of his mind he is terribly concerned. He is being summoned to Earth and that too by the call of a human — he needs to know why? There is something innately divine that is unfolding as this human recites these sacred verses, can almost feel a churning of the ocean of time reminding him of the great event where his father became the vessel holding the most powerful poisons.
The story of the 52 hidden Jyotirlingas is about to unravel and hopefully return his parents to their home bringing an end to these pesky dramas that are playing out with the other gods.
The Secret of Shiva will be the first in the Hinduverse Fantasy series by Naufal Khan. It will be available soon in the print edition, want to read more tap here
About the author: Naufal Khan is the founding editor of Indian Spice, a passion for digital-first publishing. he keeps the thread of identity South African first, Indian by descent alive by sharing the best of South African Indian trending news & diaspora content.
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