Friday, April 14, 2017

Shiva and Vishnu Bow



Shiva Dhanush (Sanskrit: शिव धनुश), also known as Pinaka(Ajagav), in Hindu mythology, was the divine bow of Lord Shiva gifted to King Janaka by Sage Parashurama for safe-keeping while the sage performed penances. It was gifted to Parashurama by Shiva for being a great disciple.

In earlier part of her life, Sita while playing with her sisters had unknowingly moved the table over which the "Shiva Dhanush" had been placed; which was something no one in the palace could do. This incident was however observed by King Janaka and he decided to make this incident as the backdrop for swayamvar.

Later, Janaka had announced that whoever wanted to marry Sita had to do so only after lifting (which was itself a difficult job) the bow from its place and stringing it. The bow was broken by Lord Rama when he attempted to string the bow, during the swayamvar of King Janaka's daughter, Sita, whereby he won the hand of Sita in marriage.

After the swayamvar, while Rama, Sita and Lakshmana were on their way to Ayodhya, Parashurama confronted and challenged Rama for breaking the bow. Dasharatha told Parashurama the incident which had happened in the palace. But Parashurama wouldn't control and brought Lord Vishnu's bow. He then asked Rama to string the bow and fight a duel with him.

Rama respectfully bows to Parashurama, and within a twinkling of an eyelid snatches the bow of Vishnu, strings it, Rama then shoots the arrow up into the sky with Vishnu's bow, performing a feat true to his supreme, divine nature with his natural weapon.

Then Parashurama left this world to mahendra Parvat.

Kanda / Youtube
The Same Thing Repeated with Krishna - This Time Krishna Breaks Bow Given to Kamsa by Parashurama Through Shiva

Note : Both the bows were crafted by vishwakarma


  1. in mahabharat parshuaram give shiva bow to tarna n it was the same bow name pinaki or vijay .witch used in sita swayamvar. the ques is when rama broke that bow then how can it become in one piece in mahabharat used by karna... who do join that

    1. parashuram is caretaker of multiple shiva bows

  2. Nice article. Its quite amazing to know that there are so many stories that many are not aware. This story is a perfect example. Hardly many are aware of the story when two avatars of Vishnu fought with each other.

  3. I don't think Sita Mata was accompanying Lord Ram and Laxman when Parashuram challenged them. The marriage took place some time later and all four brothers (Lord Ram, laxman, Bharat and Shatrughna) were married to the four sisters (Sita Mata, Urmila, Mandavi and Shrtkirti, respectively).

  4. When Ram had broken Shiva (Pinak), then how did Krishna break it again and with that bow, how did Arjun manage the fish's eye?