27 Jun 2019

The Atmashatkam (आत्मषट्कम्), also known as Nirvanashatkam (निर्वाणषट्कम्), is a composition of 6 verses (hence the name Shat-kam meaning six-verses) written by the Hindu philosopher Adi Shankara summarizing the basic teachings of non-dualism in Hinduism (Advaita Vedanta). It was written around 788-820 CE. (“Atma” means the True Self) and are said to be of value towards Self-Realization.

It is said that when Adi Shankara was a young boy of eight and wandering near River Narmada, seeking to find his guru, he encountered the seer Govinda Bhagavatpada who asked him, “Who are you?”. The boy answered with the below verses and the seer accepted him as his disciple.

Singer:Ved Vrind

॥ निर्वाण षटकम् ॥

मनो बुद्ध्यहंकारचित्तानि नाहम् न च श्रोत्र जिह्वे न च घ्राण नेत्रे
न च व्योम भूमिर् न तेजॊ न वायु: चिदानन्द रूप: शिवोहम् शिवोहम् ॥ १ ॥

mano buddhi ahankara chittani naaham
na cha shrotravjihve na cha ghraana netre
na cha vyoma bhumir na tejo na vaayuhu
chidananda rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham

I am not the mind, the intellect, the ego or the memory,
I am not the ears, the skin, the nose or the eyes,
I am not space, not earth, not fire, water or wind,
I am the form of consciousness and bliss,
I am the eternal Shiva…


न च प्राण संज्ञो न वै पञ्चवायु: न वा सप्तधातुर् न वा पञ्चकोश:
न वाक्पाणिपादौ न चोपस्थपायू चिदानन्द रूप: शिवोहम् शिवोहम् ॥ २ ॥

na cha prana sangyo na vai pancha vayuhu
na va sapta dhatur na va pancha koshah
na vak pani-padam na chopastha payu
chidananda rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham

I am not the breath, nor the five elements,
I am not matter, nor the five sheaths [1] of consciousness
Nor am I the speech, the hands, or the feet,
I am the form of consciousness and bliss,
I am the eternal Shiva…


न मे द्वेष रागौ न मे लोभ मोहौ मदो नैव मे नैव मात्सर्य भाव:
न धर्मो न चार्थो न कामो ना मोक्ष: चिदानन्द रूप: शिवोहम् शिवोहम् ॥ ३ ॥

na me dvesha ragau na me lobha mohau
na me vai mado naiva matsarya bhavaha
na dharmo na chartho na kamo na mokshaha
chidananda rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham

There is no like or dislike in me, no greed or delusion,
I know not pride or jealousy,
I have no duty, no desire for wealth, lust or liberation,
I am the form of consciousness and bliss,
I am the eternal Shiva…


न पुण्यं न पापं न सौख्यं न दु:खम् न मन्त्रो न तीर्थं न वेदा: न यज्ञा:
अहं भोजनं नैव भोज्यं न भोक्ता चिदानन्द रूप: शिवोहम् शिवोहम् ॥ ४ ॥

na punyam na papam na saukhyam na duhkham
na mantro na tirtham na veda na yajnah
aham bhojanam naiva bhojyam na bhokta
chidananda rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham

No virtue or vice, no pleasure or pain,
I need no mantras, no pilgrimage, no scriptures or rituals,
I am not the experienced, nor the experience itself,
I am the form of consciousness and bliss,
I am the eternal Shiva…


न मृत्युर् न शंका न मे जातिभेद: पिता नैव मे नैव माता न जन्म
न बन्धुर् न मित्रं गुरुर्नैव शिष्य: चिदानन्द रूप: शिवोहम् शिवोहम् ॥ ५ ॥

na me mrtyu shanka na mejati bhedaha
pita naiva me naiva mataa na janmaha
na bandhur na mitram gurur naiva shishyaha
chidananda rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham

I have no fear of death, no caste or creed,
I have no father, no mother, for I was never born,
I am not a relative, nor a friend, nor a teacher nor a student,
I am the form of consciousness and bliss,
I am the eternal Shiva…


अहं निर्विकल्पॊ निराकार रूपॊ विभुत्वाच्च सर्वत्र सर्वेन्द्रियाणाम्
न चासंगतं नैव मुक्तिर् न मेय: चिदानन्द रूप: शिवोहम् शिवोहम् ॥ ६ ॥

aham nirvikalpo nirakara rupo
vibhut vatcha sarvatra sarvendriyanam
na cha sangatham naiva muktir na meyaha
chidananda rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham

I am devoid of duality, my form is formlessness,
I exist everywhere, pervading all senses,
I am neither attached, neither free nor captive,
I am the form of consciousness and bliss,
I am the eternal Shiva…

[1]: Five sheaths - Anatomical, Physiological, Mental, Intellectual and Bliss