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Nataraja Mantras: Hindu God and Cosmic Dancer

Nataraja mantras are joyful and exciting! The lyrics help to explain the history of the Hindu god known as the Cosmic Dancer or Lord of the Dance. Nataraja is one of the presiding deities for the crown chakra.

Nataraja is a form of Shiva, one of the principal deities of Hinduism. Shiva is part of the Hindu trinity composed of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. Shiva is the destroyer of evil, akin to the Holy Spirit in the Christian trinity. Shiva is alternately depicted both as benevolent and fearsome.

Nataraja Illustration by Rose Karlsen
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Shiva is often shown with a serpent around his neck, a crescent moon as an adornment, the river Ganges flowing from his hair or flowing nearby, the trishula as his weapon, and a damaru (drum) nearby. The dancing form of Shiva called Nataraja is a joyful being spinning and dancing through creation. Nataraja represents the ecstatic state of enlightenment.

Learn more about the crown chakra, mantras and symbolism in Crown Chakra Meaning.

Thanks to my son Joey Karlsen for editing the super fun visuals!

Nataraja Mantras: Traditional

The following is a traditional chant associated with Nataraja. The meaning of the Sanskrit words are as follows:

Nataraja, Nataraja, Nartana Sundara Nataraja (2x)
Shivaraja, Shivaraja, Shivakami Preya Shivaraja (2x)
Chidambaresa Nataraja, Parthi Puresa Shivaraja

The meaning of this chant is “Salutations to the beautiful dancing Nataraja, the Lord Shiva, whose consort is Shivakami. Honor to Shiva who is the master of the sky of consciousness. Nataraja is the lord of the city of Parthi.”

Nataraja: king of dancing
Sundara: beautiful or handsome
Shivaraja: variation on the name of Lord Shiva, the royal Shiva
Shivakami: the beloved (wife) of Lord Shiva
Preya or priya: dear
Chidambaresa: the sky of consciousness
Parthi: city of Parthi
Puresa: lord of a place or city

Nataraja Mantras: The Beautiful One

The following is another mantra to Nataraja with an original melody:

Nataraja Dhimi Dhimi Bolo
Nataraja Bam Bam Bolo
Nataraja Sundara, Nataraja Shivaraja Sundara

Meaning: “Dhimi dhimi” is the sound of Nataraja’s dancing feet. “Bam bam” is his beating drum. “Sundara” means “beautiful” and “lovely.”

The dance of Nataraja is called Tandava. The dance is the source of all movement within the universe. The gestures of the Tandava indicate five activities of Shiva. They are creation (symbolized by the drum), protection (the upraised hand), grounding and claiming the earth (the foot on the ground), destruction (the hand holding fire), and release (the upraised foot). 

Nataraja Mantras: Praise to Shiva

This is a chant to Nataraja that simply means, “Praise to Nataraja, the royal Shiva, who is beautiful.” Lyrics: “Nataraja, Shivaraja, Sundara.”

Shiva is often viewed as “the destroyer.” Likewise, Krishna or Vishnu is “the Preserver” and Brahma is “the Creator.” This Trinity alternately creates, preserves and destroys physical manifestation in the universe.

There are experts who view the ancient Vedas as scientific texts describing the processes of creation and destruction from a physics perspective. Each vowel and consonant in Sanskrit is said to carry a particular vibration and to create a specific form in the material world. 

Learn more in the article One Word Mantras.

About the Author

Kathleen Karlsen is a musician, artist, writer and speaker. She is the author of two books (Flower Symbols and Vocal Medicine) and over 200 articles. Kathleen, her husband Andrew and their five children live in Bozeman, Montana. More about Kathleen Karlsen.

Kathleen’s Books

Vocal Medicine reveals Kathleen Karlsen’s personal journey and years of research into mantras, chanting and kirtan. Learn more about using mantras and singing to invigorate your life! Explore the chakras and the impact of sound in every area of your life. 

Flower Symbols by Kathleen Karlsen features fascinating information about the folklore of the world’s most beloved flowers. Flowers accompany us in nearly every major event in life. This book is a perfect gift for every flower lover in your life! 

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This article is an introduction to the joyful cosmic being in the Hindu traditional known as Nataraja, a form of Shiva. Nataraja is the form of Shiva associated with enlightenment and the crown chakra. This article includes Nataraja mantras lyrics and music videos for both traditional and original mantras.  

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