Lord Shiva has five faces called Ishana, Tatpurusha, Aghora, Vamadeva and Sadyojatha. These five faces of Shiva represent the five basic elements viz. akash, air, fire, water and earth. In fact these faces can be called five forms of Shiva. Any creation has to be made out of these five gross elements. A) Five Faces of Lord Shiva: 1. Sadyojata - West Face: West is called as “Paschima or Pratyak”. The soul is called as “Pratyagaatma”. “Sadyaha which means just now and Jataha means now born. Shiva makes his presence felt through the countless souls being born. Hence the apt name 'Sadyosata'. This shows the creative aspect of Parameshvara. Since the very existence of any being starts from its birth, the Sadyosata aspect of Lord Shiva is prayed first. The essence of the Sadyosata Mantra is : "O! Lord ! Sadyojaata, never give me desires which are the reason for this countless births and deaths. Please Bless me with the passion for liberation. My prayers to Sadyosata”. This Sadyosata aspect is correlated with the following; To “Shi” Beekakshara in Panchakshara Mantra To “Mano Maya Kosha” amongst the five Koshas To “Agni” principle among five principles “Pancha Bhuta”. To “Manipuraka” among Six Chakras To “Panchama (Pa)” Swara among the Seven Swaras To “Ma” in 'Omkara' Let us pray that Sadyosata face of Lord Shiva. 'Shivam Shaantam Jagannatham Loka Anugraha Kaaranam Shivam Ekam Param Vande Shikaaraaya Namo Namaha' 2.Vaama Deva – North Face: The term Vama means Left or innocent. If we stand facing east, North direction is to our left. Hence the north facing Shiva is worshipped as “Vaama Deva”. The left of a person is representative of the Shakti aspect. It represents “Maya and the feminine strength and beauty”, Hence in Ardha Nareeshwara aspect, we find the goddess on the left side. The beautiful Vaama Deva is more ancient that the world’s creation. Hence he is the eldest. Since he is more worthy than others, he is the best. In catastrophic times, he is Rudra. He is Kaala in creation and causes the erosion of one’s age. This Vaama Deva aspect is correlated with the following; To “Vaa” Beekakshara in Panchakshara Mantra To “Vijnaana Maya Kosha” amongst the five Koshas To “Vaayu” principle among five principles “Pancha Bhuta” To “Aanhata Chakra” among Six Chakras To “Daivata (Dha) ” Swara among the Seven Swaras To “Bindu” in 'Omkara'. Let us offer prayers to such Vama Deva: 'Vaahanam Vrushabho Yasya Vasukihi Kantha Bhushanam Vaame Shati Dharam Vande Va Kaaraaya Namo Namaha' 3. Aghora - South Face: If we stand facing east, south is our right. Hence right side is called as “Bala”. As important as right hand is for humans, The South face is important to Lord Shiva. This is also famously known as “Dakshina Murthy”. To know about the essence of the Adhora principle of Lord Shiva, one has to understand the meaning of the Aghora Mantra among the Pancha Brahma Mantra. Those who worshipped the Aghora form of Shiva were called as “Aghoris”. Their main belief is that there is no such thing called “inauspicious” in this world because all that exists if Shiva himself. They generally live in graveyards and are naked. They use those things which the world has branded as “inauspicious”. They perform harsh penance. Those who worship Aghora form of Shiva are saved from natural catastrophe, water hardships and life threats. This Aghora aspect is correlated with the following; To “Ma” Beekakshara in Panchakshara Mantra To “Prana Maya Kosha” amongst the five Koshas To “Jala” principle among five principles “Pancha Bhuta” To “Svadhishthana Chakra” among Six Chakras To “Madyama (Ma)” Swara among the Seven Swaras To “U” in 'Omkara'. Our prayers to such Aghora form of Shiva: 'Mahadevam Mahatmanam Maha Paataka Nashanam Maha Paapa HaramVande Makaaraaya Namo Namaha' 4. Tatpurasha - East Face: The word “Tat” represents Paramatma. Tatpurusha means Saguna filled Para Brahma form. This is a important face of Parama Shiva. The form of Shiva that is in meditation and Blessing the world – is this face. Hence this eastern face is considered as the first face. The word “Tatpurusha” means “his person”. One who is always behind a person to protect is Tatpurusha. This Tatpurusha aspect is correlated with the following; To “Na” Beekakshara in Panchakshara Mantra To “Anna Maya Kosha” amongst the five Koshas To “Earth” principle among five principles “Pancha Bhuta” To “Muladhara” among six Chakras To “Shadja (sa), Rushabha (ri) And Gandhara (ga)” Swaras among the Seven Swaras To “A” in 'Omkara'. Our prayers to this Tatpurusha form of Lord Shiva: 'Namaste Deva Devesha Namaste Parameshvara Namaste Vrushabharuudha Na Kaaraaya Namo Namaha' 5. Eeshana - Skyward Face: The word Ishvara is form the root “Aisha – Aishwarye”. Total wealth means the total control and ownership of all the fourteen worlds. Such form of Shiva, who is the total owner of the fourteen worlds, is called as Eeshna. This face is skywards. Which means it is on top of the other four faces which face the four directions. This fifth face of Shiva represents the creation – balance – annihilation energies and control and chaos energies. Eeshna face of Shiva which is skywards indicates the total encompassing energy of Lord Shiva. This Eeshna aspect is correlated with the following; To “Ya” Beekakshara in Panchakshara Mantra To “Ananda Maya Kosha” amongst the five Koshas To “Aakasha (ether)” principle among five principles “Pancha Bhuta” To “Vishuddha, Ajna & Sahasra Chakra ” among Six Chakras To “Nishada (ni)” Swara among the Seven Swaras To Nada aspect in 'Omkara'. Let us pray such Eeshna form of Lord Shiva: 'Yatra Kutra Sthitam Devam Sarva Vyaapi Namishvaram Yallingam Puujayeennithyam Ya Kaaraaya Namo Namaha" B) Pancha-Brahma mantras, Krishna Yajur veda, Taittiriya Aranyaka (X.17-21): 1. Sadyojāta Mantra: सद्योजातं प्रपद्यामि सद्योजाताय वै नमो नमः। भवे भवे नाति भवे भवस्व मां भवोद्भवाय नमः॥ sadyojātam prapadyāmi sadyojātāya vai namo namah bhave bhave nāti bhave bhavasva mām bhavodbhavāya namah I take refuge in the First Born, verily I bow to the First Born Do not consign me to birth after birth; Guide me beyond birth, I bow to the Causer of birth. 2. Vāmadeva Mantra: वामदेवायनमो ज्येष्ठाय नमः श्रेष्ठाय नमो रुद्राय नमः कालाय नमः। कलविकरणाय नमो बलाय नमो बलविकरणाय नमो बलप्रमथनाय नमः। सर्वभूतदमनाय नमो मनोन्मनाय नमः॥ vāmadevāya namh jyesthāya namah śresthāya namo rudrāya namah kālāya namah kalavikaranāya namo balāya namo balavikaranāya namo balapramathanāya namah sarvabhūtadamanāya namo manonmanāya namah I bow to the Noble One, the Eldest; to the Best, to Rudra and to Time, I bow to the Incomprehensible, to Strength, To the Causer of various forces, and to the Extender of Strength. I bow to the Subduer of all beings, and to the One who kindles the Light. 3. Aghora Mantra: अघोरेभ्योऽथ घोरेभ्यो अघोरघोरेतरेभ्यः। सर्वतः शर्वः सर्वेभ्यो नमस्ते रुद्र रूपेभ्यः॥ aghorebhyo'tha ghorebhyo aghoraghoretarebhyah sarvatah śarvah sarvebhyo namaste rudra rūpebhyah I bow to those not terrible and those who are terrible, And to those who are both terrible and not terrible. Everywhere and always, Śarva, I bow to all Thy Rudra forms. 4. Tatpurusa Mantra: तत्पुरुषाय विद्महे महादेवाय धीमहि। तन्नो रुद्रः प्रचोदयात्॥ tatpurushāya vidmahe mahādevāya dhīmahi tanno rudrah pracodayāt May we know that Supreme Person And mediate on that Great God, May Rudra impel us! 5. Īśāna Mantra: ईशान सर्वविद्यानामीश्वरः सर्वभूतानां ब्रह्मादिपति ब्रह्मणोऽधिपतिर्। ब्रह्मा शिवो मे अस्तु स एव सदाशिव ओम्॥ īśāna sarvavidyānāmīśvarah sarvabhūtānām brahmādipati brahmano'dhipatir brahmā śivo me astu sa eva sadāśiva om Ruler of all knowledge, Master of all beings, Commander of all study and devotion, That God Auspicious to me, Be He just so, the Ever-Auspicious Om.