Five as the lucky number
Many experts believe that the number 5 is considered sacred in context of Lord Shiva. There are different reasons to this theory. It is said that Lord Shiva’s body consists of five mantras which are called ‘Panchabramans’. These are – Sadyojata, Vamadeva, Aghora, Tatpurusa and Isana. These mantras have distinct iconography. These five mantras represent the five faces of Lord Shiva and are often associated with the five senses, the five elements, the five organs of perception and the five organs of action. It is said that the five elements are the five senses of Lord Shiva. Sky is his ears, wind is his body, fire is represented by his eyes, water is his tongue and land is his nose.
Some experts also say that Lord Shiva was five faced and it is because of his five faces that the five swaras (musical notes) namely, ri, ga, ma, dha and ni of the Carnatic music evolved.The most common mantra of Lord Shiva ‘Om Namah Shivay’ also has five syllables which is yet another reason that the number is considered sacred.
Also, there are five temples in the southern part of India where Lord Shiva has his throne. They are –
1. Kanaka Sabhai (golden throne) – Chidambaram
2. Velli Sabhai (silver throne) – Madurai
3. Ratna Sabhai (gem throne) – Tiruvalangadu
4. Taamira Sabhai (copper throne) – Tirunelveli
5. Chitra Sabhai (Artistic throne) – Tirukkuttralam
These are all referred to as ‘Sabhas’. A ‘Sabha’ is a throne or a seat where a ruler/king or a judge sits and hears the prayers and grievances of the people.
The number is considered sacred due to all these reasons, but it is not a number or a colour that gets you closer to god. It is the devotion and the true feeling that would get you closer to the almighty.
Om namah shivay!