Shaligram Stone: All You Need To Know about Shaligram!
May 24, 2021
Shaligram Stone is found in the Kali Gandaki River in Nepal at Muktinath. Shaligram Shila is worshiped by many families and in temples around the world. In this blog, I will answer some central questions and topics about Shaligram.
- What is Shaligram?
- Shaligram story in Hinduism
- How to worship Shaligram Stone?
- Types of Shaligram Stone
- Which Shaligram is best for worship at home?
- How to identify the original Shaligram Shila?
- Shaligram stone benefits worshiping at home
What is Shaligram Stone:
Shaligram is a Blackstone brought from the banks of the Kali Gandaki River in Nepal at Muktinath. It is a holy stone worshipped by Vishnu Bhakts in temples and families worldwide. It is the most sacred and holy stone worshipped by the Vaishnavas (Especially those who worship Lord Krishna). There are different types of Shaligram with different names, and all of them are considered auspicious idols of Lord Vishnu. Vajrakita (a kind of ancient insect with strong teeth) has different types of chakra curves.
In scientific name, Shaligram is a black-colored Ammonoid fossil from millions of years ago.
Shaligram story in Hinduism:
According to the Devi Bhagavata Purana/Brahmavaivarta Purana & Shiva Purana in Hinduism. Shaligram Stone is Lord Vishnu, and Tulsi is worshiped story mentioned in Purana.
There was a king named Vrishadhvaja, and he was a big devotee of Lord Shiva. He only worships Lord Shiva and refuses to worship another deity because he refuses to worship another deity. Lord Suriya Dev cursed him to suffer from poverty and the loss of his all kingdom.
After many years, the grandson of Vrishadhvaya, Dharmadhvaja & Kusadhvaja came to know the reason behind their poverty.
They performed very hard Tapasya(propitiate austerities) to Goddess Laxmi to regain their prosperity.
Finally, Goddess Laxmi was pleased with their austerities (Tapasya). She blessed them with prosperity and even promised them she would take birth as a daughter in their life.
Both brothers were blessed with a daughter. Dharmadhvaja's daughter Tulsi( Vrinda), and Kusadhvaja's daughter, are Vedavati (Sita Devi). Tulsi and Vedavati are both avatars (incarnations) of Goddess Laxmi.
Tulsi went to Badrinath to perform Tapasya. (austerities) to get Lord Vishnu as her husband in that life, she had to marry Shankhachuda( Jalandhara).
Shankhachuda was Sudama ( a Lord Vishnu Saywak/devotee/reside) in the previous birth. For some reason, Sudama was cursed by Radha to take rebirth as a Danava, so as a result, Shankhachuda took birth from out of Vishu's body. He was mighty from his natural birth from Vishnu itself, and he was a big devotee of Lord Vishnu.
Shankhachuda is very virtuous & religious to Lord Vishnu. He was the leader of Danavas (giant). Lord Bharma suggested he marry Tulsi to become more powerful, and he did that.
(Lord Bharma knows that Goddess Laxmi is Tulsi and Shankhachuda a natural birth from Lord Vishnu itself).
Shankhachuda announced a battle against devatas. He won against many Gods in his leadership, and even he won Svarga (Heaven) and made out all gods from it. All Gods went to Lord Shiva to protect them and help them regain their respect and kingdom.
Finally, Shankhachuda announced a battle against Lord Shiva to rule Kailash Parvat (Mount Kailash). Lord Shiva also announced a battle against him to give back God's respect and kingdom.
There was a battle between Devatas and Danavas (God and Giant) for a long time, but the result was not coming.
Lord Bharma suggests to Lord Vishnu that due to Shankhachuda's virtue and his wife, Tulsi Pativrata (purity), protect him. So no one can beat him in battle. So it would help if you violated Tulsi Pativrata to win against Danavas.
Once, when Shankhachuda was busy in battle fighting with Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu took the form (counterpart) of Shankhachuda and went to Tulsi and cohabited (Physical intimacy) with her. Tulsi lost her Pativrata (purity). Meanwhile, Shankhachuda was killed by Lord Shiva because Tulsi Pativrata Kawach (armor) was no more protecting him.
Meanwhile, after Shankhachuda's death, Tulsi became doubtful that the person with her at the time was not Shankhachuda. So he must be someone else. So she looked at him and asked him to see his natural face.
Lord Vishnu turns into his avatar. Now she knows that Lord Vishnu destroyed her Pativrata (purity).
She got so angry that she cursed Lord Vishnu, saying I was your devotee and even my husband. We always pray to you. Your idol statue is a stone, so you don't have any feelings or emotions. So I cursed you that you become a stone for destroying my Pativarta and the reason for my husband's death.
Lord Vishnu explains to her that he wants to end the curse on Sudama by Radha, who took rebirth as Shankhachuda as a leader of Danavas. So you are my devotee and incarnation of Goddess Laxmi only.
After hearing that, Tulsi fired and destroyed herself, saying I don't want to leave with her husband.
Later, God planted some seed on Tulsi's body, rakh (ash). And the blessing that she would remain with Lord Vishnu on earth in the form of the Tulsi plant, and Lord Krishna took the curse of Tulsi and went to Kali Gandi River and took both and became a stone.
Shaligram is the incarnation of Lord Vishnu, and Tulsi is the incarnation of Goddess Laxmi. A home where Tulsi and Shaligram at home. Both Laxmi Narayan blesses them. So Tulsi is married to Shaligram Ji in Hindu mythology.
How to worship Shaligram Stone?
There are different ways to worship Shaligram at home. But every people are not perfect in puja as Guru Ji in temples.
I will let you know the simple way to do Shaligram Shila pooja( Prey) to get blessed by Lord Vishnu at home.
First, Abhishek Shaligram Ji with some holy or ordinary water will do.
Then Abhishek with Panchamrita (it is a mixture of honey, sugar, cow milk, curd, and ghee)
Then Abhishek it with simple water and cleaned it with some cloth.
Apply Chandan(Sandalwood) Tika on Shaligram Ji.
Offer him some flowers, and Tulsi leaps.
Light a Diya(lamp usually made from clay, with a cotton wick dipped in ghee or oils) before him.
Chant Mantra: Om Namo Narayana or Om Vishnu Hari Narayan or any Lord Vishnu Mantra you know.
( It should be chanted a minimum of 21 times, or 108 times is best).
If some item is unavailable, puja, just prey with a pure soul, will do. The same puja can be offered every day.
It is good to keep Shankha (Conch) near Shaligram Shila. (Chakra, Padma(Flower), Gada(Mace), Shankha(Conch) are appurtenances of Lord Vishnu.
Types of Shaligram Stone:
The Vishnu Puran mentioned different types of Shaligram Shila. All are the incarnation of Lord Vishnu.
Name of Shaligram according to several Sudarshana Chakra on it.
- Sudarsan Shaligram - One Vishnu chakra
- Laxmi Narayan Shaligram - Two Vishnu Chakra
- Achyut Shaligram - Three Vishnu Chakra
- Janardan Shaligram - Four Vishnu Chakra
- Basudev Shaligram - Five Vishnu Chakra
- Pradhyumna Shaligram - Six Vishnu Chakra
- Shankarshan Shaligram - Seven Vishnu Chakra
- Purushottam Shaligram - Eight Vishnu Chakra
- Navavyuha Shaligram - Nine Vishnu Chakra
- Dashavatar Shaligram - Ten Vishnu Chakra
- Aniruddha Shaligram - Eleven Vishnu Chakra
- Ananta Shaligram - Twelve Vishnu Chakra
- Paramatma Shaligram -Thirteen Vishnu Chakra
Name of Shaligram Shila according to the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu:
1) Matsya Shaligram - Fish Avatar (Incarnation)
2) Kurma Shaligram - Tortoise avatar
3) Varaha Shaligram - Boar avat
4) Narshimba Shaligram - Half lion, half men avatar
5) Vamana Shaligram - Brahman avatar
6) Parashurama Shaligram - Vishnu avatar
7) Rama Shaligram - Rama avatar
8) Krishna Shaligram - Krishan avatar
9) Buddha Shaligram - Buddha avatar
10) Kalki Shaligram - Vishnu avatar to appear at the end of the Kali Yuga.
Many types of Shaligram are found in the Kali Gandaki River in Nepal at Muktinath. A few names are following.
Laxmi Narayan Shaligram, Laxmi Narayan Sudarshna Shaligram, Keshava Shaligram, Narayana Shaligram, Madhava Shaligram, Govinda Shaligram, Vishnu Shaligram, Madusudhana Shaligram, Trivikrama Shaligram, Vamana Shaligram, Shridhara Shaligram, Hrishikesh Shaligram, Padmanabha Shaligram, Damodara Shaligram, Sankarshana Shaligram, Pradyumna Shaligram, Aniruddha Shaligram, Purushottama Shaligram, Adokshaja Shaligram, Narashima Shaligram, Achyuta Shaligram, Janardana Shaligram, Upendra Shaligram, Hari Shaligram, Krishna Shaligram, Vasudeva Shaligram, Buddha Shaligram, Suriya Shaligram, Janeudhari Shaligram, Kalki Shaligram, Shesha Naag Shaligram. These are a few names of the Shaligram stone; there are many more.
The name of Shaligrams is given by their structure, by four appurtenances of Lord Vishnu - Chakra, Padma, Gada, and Shankha.
Which Shaligram is best for worship at home?
There are different types of Shaligram. Among them, you can worship any Shaligram; they all are the avatar of Lord Vishnu.
Any number of Shaligram you can have for worship; there is no specification about worshiping Shaligram numbers.
You may console yourself, Guru Ji, if you have any doubts.
There are different sizes of Shaligram, and you can worship any size.
How to identify the original Shaligram Shila?
Nowadays, it is tough to identify the original Shaligram by ordinary people. This is because so many people are selling fake made of black cement or joined.
But still, few people are selling genuine Shaligram stones. Therefore, there are a few basic things that you keep in your mind while you purchase Shaligram:
Shaligram is always irregular in shape and size because of nature. Therefore, it is not original if someone gives you the same size and shape Shaligram.
Nowadays, Shaligram mala with the same size and same shape is available in the market. However, those mala can not be authentic because drilling holes and the exact size are impossible. Shaligram is to worship at home and in the temple, not for wearing on the neck.
Naturally found, Shaligram is suitable for worship. But, unfortunately, many people are selling Shaligram Shila with God curved on them. In that way, they made natural Shaligram destroyed.
You can look for an expert person and some temple Guru Ji to identify for you. They can help you to identify.
Suppose Shaligram Shila is broken/cracked or gets broken even after you worshiped it. Nevertheless, it does not lose its good nature, so it is good to worship.
And if you are buying online, check and read about the owner of the site and some genuine online reviews. Genuine reviews make you understand the product quality and website service.
Shaligram stone benefits worshiping at home:
There are thousands of benefits. It depends on your purity and deep prey.
Primarily Shaligram Shila is worshiped for six benefits of life: Righteous living, Wealth, Protection, Pleasures, and Spiritual blessing.
But still, there are some crucial benefits of worshiping Shaligram at home.
It protects from negative energy,
Removes obstacles in life,
Blesses with health and wealth,
Prosperity brings good luck,
Good fortune brings happiness,
Unity in the family,
Removes Vishnu Dosha,
Protects from evil eyes,
Give name and fame in society,
Removes kundali dosha,
Blesses with a long and healthy life,
Blesses with a person with the child.
There are many other benefits as well. These are a few of them.
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Author: Ashish Modi