The Tale of Ravana devotion to Shiva and the gift of Chandrahasa

by Pandas Box on Jul 03, 2024

The Tale of Ravana devotion to Shiva and the gift of Chandrahasa

In the rich tapestry of Hindu mythology, few tales captivate the imagination as much as the story of Ravana's unwavering devotion to Lord Shiva. As mentioned in the Uttara Kanda of the Ramayana, reveals how the demon king of Lanka, known for his immense power and arrogance, bowed down to the supreme deity Shiva and received the divine sword, Chandrahasa.

The Jealousy of Ravana

Ravana, the powerful ruler of Lanka, was very jealous of his stepbrother Kubera, the god of wealth. Kubera ruled the beautiful and rich city of Alaka. Driven by jealousy and wanting to prove he was stronger, Ravana attacked Alaka, defeated Kubera, and took many of his treasures, including a magical flying chariot called Pushpaka Vimana.

The Encounter with Kailash

As Ravana flew back to Lanka in the stolen chariot, he was suddenly stopped by the majestic Kailash mountains. Curious about their beauty, Ravana got out and met Nandi, Shiva's bull-faced guardian. Nandi told Ravana that Kailash was the home of Shiva and Parvati, and no one was allowed to disturb their peace.
Ravana, feeling confident and proud from his recent victory, ignored Nandi's warning and tried to move forward. Nandi then cursed him, saying that monkeys would one day defeat him. Angered by this, Ravana wanted to show his strength by lifting the Kailash mountains. Using all twenty of his arms, he started to lift the mountains, making the ground under Shiva and Parvati shake.

The Wrath of Shiva

Terrified by the chaos, Parvati clung to Shiva, who was now furious. To teach the arrogant demon king a lesson, Shiva pressed the mountain with his toe, trapping Ravana beneath its immense weight. Ravana cried out in pain, begging for forgiveness, but Shiva remained unmoved.

Ravana's ministers, upon hearing of his predicament, rushed to Kailash to save him. Despite their efforts, they failed to free Ravana and advised him to pray to Shiva. Following their counsel, Ravana began singing hymns in praise of the Lord, his devotion unwavering even in the face of immense suffering.

The Birth of Shiva Tandava Stotra

For thousands of years, Ravana remained trapped under Kailash, his hymns becoming known as the Shiva Tandava Stotra. Impressed by Ravana's persistence and genuine devotion, Shiva eventually forgave him and bestowed upon him the celestial sword, Chandrahasa. This divine weapon symbolized Ravana's transformation from a prideful ruler to Shiva’s greatest devotee.


The story of Ravana’s devotion to Shiva and the gift of Chandrahasa is a profound reminder of the power of genuine devotion and humility. It illustrates how even the most powerful beings can find themselves humbled by the divine and how true devotion can lead to forgiveness and divine blessings. This tale from the Ramayana continues to inspire and teach valuable lessons to devotees and enthusiasts of Hindu mythology.