Shiva: the blissful destroyer and the legend of the Shivalingam

In the post Vedic times, there existed a period in which the remnants of the Vedic culture were mixed along with different sectarian religions and ideas. Arguably, the most important contribution of this time to Hindu culture is the conception of the ‘Trimurti’ – Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. They symbolize the manifestations of The Supreme in three forms. Brahma- the creator, Vishnu – the preserver and Shiva – the destroyer. There is a reason Shiva is always associated with destruction; a scientific reason, which is being investigated right now. And in this part 2 of the series, I am going to share the results of my study on these findings with you. And yes, the implications of this are mind-blowing. Just relax and keep an open mind while reading is all I ask.

When I say Shiva is associated with destruction, it is not the ‘destruction’ that we understand from the dictionary. Shiva’s destruction is not negative. It is a positive, beneficial and constructive destruction which builds and transforms life and energy for the welfare of the world and the beings that inhabit it. He destroys whenever it is required to uphold the laws of nature. He is a destroyer of all evil things, our desires and ignorance, our worldly bondages and our bad karma – everything which is a hindrance in our path to God. When we make sufficient progress on our spiritual path, he even destroys our biggest fear – death itself.

Whenever we hear the name of Shiva, the first thing that comes to our mind is the ‘Shivalingam’. It is one of the most widely associated symbols with Shiva, other than maybe ‘Aum’. The Shivalingam is the physical manifestation of Shiva kept in the ‘gaabhaaraa’ or the sanctum sanctorum of Shiva temples. It is a round protruding cylindrical sculpture which is set on a circular base. The base represents Brahma, the middle octagonal part represents Vishnu and the upper cylindrical part represents Shiva. Most of the Shivalingas in temples are naturally formed.

There have been many interpretations of the Shivalingam shape. A few so-called ‘scholars’ have associated the shape of the Shivalingam to that of a phallus and have made some obscene connections. In today’s age, the enemies of truth and knowledge are not ignorance and false modesty, but are illusion of knowledge and the delusion of grandeur.

I will talk only about the scientific interpretation of the Shivalingam here and not the spiritual one, which is pretty fulfilling itself. Scientists have dubbed the Shivalingam ‘The ancient nuclear reactor’. Yes, a nuclear reactor. Geometrically speaking, the shape of the Shivalingam is the only shape that can withhold tremendous amount of energy. Every nuclear reactor in the world is shaped like that of a Shivalingam. Below is a photo of the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) located in Mumbai, India and that of a Shivalingam.

All the nuclear reactors used currently have the same shape as that of a Shivalingam. This is the safest structure that can be built for a nuclear power plant and is the only shape which can contain the enormous amount of nuclear energy. The only nuclear plant that did not have this shape was at Chernobyl in Russia and hence, there was a malfunction and a gas leak which turned out to be one of the worst nuclear disasters in modern times. This is no co-incidence. When we try to outsmart nature, it teaches us a lesson. All the nuclear reactors have a cylindrical shape which have a spout like extension, just like the Shivalingam. Moreover, the shape of the St. Peter’s church located in Vatican City, the birthplace of Christianity, is shaped like the Shivalingam (shown below).


The Shivalingam needs a continuous ‘abhishek’ of water from a pot hanging over the cylindrical part. The cylindrical reactor of a nuclear power plant also needs a continuous supply of water to cool it down. Nuclear power plants, like Shivalingam are generally found near water bodies for this very reason. Most of the 12 Jyotirlingas in India are near a water body of some kind. The irradiated water is drained through pipes from the spout-like extension in the nuclear power plants. It is modelled after the fact that the water from the ‘abhishek’ gets drained through the grooves found on the spout-like extension on the Shivalingam. Scientifically, dissipation of energy in that manner is the most efficient way of energy dissipation possible. And that is why we do not drink water that is drained from the Shivalingam as ‘tirtha’, because it is irradiated with nuclear energy which is harmful for humans. Another popular tradition which is carried out strictly in Shiva temples is that no-one can complete the ‘pradakshina’ of the lingam. Only 3/4th pradakshina is permitted and as soon as we reach the spout, we turn back but we never cross it. If we cross the line of dissipation of nuclear energy, it is harmful for us. Another tradition that is followed by Hindus is offering of the ‘Bel’ leaves to the Shivalingam. Those leaves have radio-protective properties that is they absorb radiation. Hence, they are offered and kept on the cylindrical part of the Shivalingam. Mount Kailash, the abode of Shiva is also shaped like a Shivalingam and is also believed to be the biggest nuclear reactor. The ice cover acts as a coolant. When the ice melts, the water runs into a lake at the foot of Mount Kailash. Drinking water from that lake is also prohibited for the aforesaid reason.

Let’s check some evidences from beyond India. Robert Oppenheimer, the father of the nuclear bomb was given the task of building the first Nuclear bomb during World War II. He had visited India once and is believed to have taken a copy of the Bhagwad Gita with him. He is said to be inspired on the design of the nuclear bomb by studying the Vedas. On witnessing the first successful test of the atomic bomb, which he had helped to develop during his work with the Manhattan Project, Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer later said: “We knew the world would not be the same again. A few people laughed, a few people cried, most people were silent. I remembered the line from the Hindu scripture, the Bhagwad Gita. Vishnu is trying to persuade the Prince (Arjuna) that he should do his duty and to impress him, takes on his multi-armed form and says – Now, I am become death, the destroyer of the Worlds. I suppose we all thought that one way of the other.” This is a quote from the Chapter 11, specifically Verse 32 of the Bhagwad Gita where Lord Krishna tells Arjuna, “I am mighty Time, the source of destruction that comes forth to annihilate the worlds.” Oppenheimer was quoting the 1944 Prabhavananda and Isherwood translation of the Bhagavad Gita. When asked if he created the first nuclear bomb, Oppenheimer said that he had built the first nuclear bomb of this time.” He said ‘of this time’ because he knew that nuclear bombs pre-dated his discovery. This clearly indicates that nuclear bombs were used in Vedic times during war and that was what inspired Oppenheimer to build the modern nuclear bomb. And if nuclear bombs were in fact used, there must have been nuclear reactors to build those bombs. A slight trace of radioactivity is still detectable near a Shiva temple on the outskirts of Jodhpur. In fact, the ultimate weapon during ancient times, the Brahmastra must be essentially a nuclear bomb. The after-effects of the Brahmastra as told in the Gita are similar as the after-effects of the nuclear bomb.  In Rig Veda, use of the nuclear bomb is described as follows: “A single projectile charged with all the power in the Universe…An incandescent column of smoke and flame as bright as 10,000 suns, rose in all its splendor…it was an unknown weapon, an iron thunderbolt, a gigantic messenger of death which reduced to ashes an entire race. The corpses were so burned as to be unrecognizable. Their hair and nails fell out, pottery broke without any apparent cause, and the birds turned white. After a few hours, all foodstuffs were infected. To escape from this fire, the soldiers threw themselves into the river.” The account purportedly or apparently describes the genocide/extinction of the Vrishni and Andakha “races”. This is the most apt description of a nuclear bomb till date.

There is another tradition which dictates that before worshipping the Shri yantra (a hindu symbol of worship), it should be touched to a Shivalingam. This makes sense now because ‘yantra’ literally means ‘machine’. All machines need energy to work. By touching the Shri yantra to Shivalingam, we essentially use the nuclear power of Shiva so that the machine works. It’s all scientific indeed!

Shiva has a natural power to generate nuclear energy. You must have heard the tale of the destruction that Shiva leaves when He opens His ‘third eye’. This is proof of the nuclear power generation capacity that is innate in Mahadeva!

What we believe is based on scientific principles. Belief and faith are two sides of the same coin. As Jim Carrey aptly puts it: “Belief helps us walk through fire, but faith helps us leap over it.” Hinduism does not oppose science. It does not even oppose other religions. Science is based on experimentation and observation and analysis of results. But Hinduism can explain things that science is just starting to understand. It is in a far more advanced state. It is rather unfortunate that the Truth of the great work done by the ancient Hindu sages are misinterpreted by some people. Nevertheless we are fortunate enough that the practices and literatures were left as a guide to us. It is a consolation that recent scientific discoveries have shown that the findings of the ancient Hindu sages were meaningful.

As I said during the introduction, Shiva destroys the ignorance of our minds and helps us see the light in darkness. I believe He had something to do with all of us realizing the points I mentioned above. He helped us realize His true potential. Let us pray that Lord Shiva keeps destroying all the negative things in our life and let Him guide us towards true enlightenment.

|| ॐ नमः शिवाय ||

PS: Here is a link to the video which shows the first successful nuclear test and Oppenheimer’s interview after that.

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Shiva: the blissful destroyer and the legend of the Shivalingam