This week’s Haiku Horizon‘s given prompt DRINK reminded me of the supreme God, Lord Shiva, the destroyer, drinking the lethal poison. My Haiku portrays the ethos of Hindu Mythology which depicts that death is inevitable and essential. The picture I’m sharing along with my Haiku here is named ‘Rudra’ which is painted by my sister Vineeta Mishra.
~ Haiku ~ ~ Haiku ~
Drank poison, salvaged mankind,
Life commences from death.
Today’s prompt, ‘drink’, made me perplexed for how to write a Haiku on such a phenomenon which is quite vital for humanity. No one in this world can survive without drinking any liquid. But poison? No one can! But Hindu mythology has many such examples where gods and humans drank poison to prove the transcendence of her love for Lord Krishna. And Lord Shiva drank poison (Halahal) to save this universe from getting destroyed from its harmful effects. According to Hindu mythology, gods and demons churned the ‘ocean of milk’ (Samudra Manthan) to segregate the ‘nectar of immortality’ (Amrit), and one of the most lethal poisons, halahal appeared as a byproduct of Amrit. To save their lives and this universe, all the gods requested Shiva to drink the poison which was venom released from the serpent king Vasuki’s mouth. Vasuki was used as a rope to churn the ocean of milk.
Lord Shiva is considered the god of destruction, the third god of Hindu Triumvirate. The other two gods of this trinity are Bramha, the creator and Vishnu, the preserver. Despite being the god of death and destruction, Shiva consumed poison and this universe was salvaged from getting destroyed. He kept that venomous drink in his throat, as that poison was too fatal to be consumed even my God. His throat turned blue due to the poisonous effect which was the reason behind Lord Shiva being called as Neel Kanth (blue throated). In Hindu Mythology, the significance of Shiva as the God of death is of more relevance than all other gods as it’s believed that destruction induces new creation and regeneration.
— Sangeeta Mishra
A Haiku is a Japanese poem traditionally comprising of seventeen syllables, in three lines of ‘five’, ‘seven’, and ‘five’, which evokes natural images.