From the time immemorial, innumerable astakas (prayer with eight stanza) have been written praising the glory of Shiva, the ultimate creator and sustainers and recycler of the universe. These astakas have been popularly known as Lingastak, Rudrastak, Bilvastak and Shivastaka. There are many which are named as Shivastaka. The one presented here is written by Adi guru Shankaracharya himself and praises the parambrahma Shiva.
तस्मै नम: परमकारणकारणाय , दिप्तोज्ज्वलज्ज्वलित पिङ्गललोचनाय ।
नागेन्द्रहारकृतकुण्डलभूषणाय , ब्रह्मेन्द्रविष्णुवरदाय नम: शिवाय ॥ 1 ॥
Salutation to thee, O Shiva, who is the prime cause of all causes, whose eyes shines bright like fire and whose blessing is sough even by Brahma, Vishnu and Indra.
श्रीमत्प्रसन्नशशिपन्नगभूषणाय , शैलेन्द्रजावदनचुम्बितलोचनाय ।
कैलासमन्दरमहेन्द्रनिकेतनाय , लोकत्रयार्तिहरणाय नम: शिवाय ॥ 2 ॥
I Pray to thee, O Shiva, who wears the moon and snakes for decoration, who is adored (kissed on his eyes) by Parvati (daughter of Himalaya), who resides on Mount Kailash and Mahendra, and who relieves the universe of its pains and suffering.
पद्मावदातमणिकुण्डलगोवृषाय , कृष्णागरुप्रचुरचन्दनचर्चिताय ।
भस्मानुषक्तविकचोत्पलमल्लिकाय , नीलाब्जकण्ठसदृशाय नम: शिवाय ॥ 3 ॥
Hail to thee, O Shiva, whose gemmed earrings throws bright light, who wears sandal paste and ashes and with lotus and juhi and whose throat resembles blue coloured lotus.
लम्बत्स पिङ्गल जटा मुकुटोत्कटाय , दंष्ट्राकरालविकटोत्कटभैरवाय ।
व्याघ्राजिनाम्बरधराय मनोहराय , त्रिलोकनाथनमिताय नम: शिवाय ॥ 4 ॥
Salutation to thee, O Shiva, whose matted hair and sharp feature gives him a terrible look and at the same time, sitting on a dear skins looks extremely pleasing and who is saluted by the heads of all the universe.
दक्षप्रजापतिमहाखनाशनाय , क्षिप्रं महात्रिपुरदानवघातनाय ।
ब्रह्मोर्जितोर्ध्वगक्रोटिनिकृंतनाय , योगाय योगनमिताय नम: शिवाय ॥ 5 ॥
O Shiva, you dissolved the offerings of King Daksha, you killed the dreaded demon Tripura in no time and it was you who cut off the fifth head of Brahma when latter grew arrogant. I bow to thee.
संसारसृष्टिघटनापरिवर्तनाय , रक्ष: पिशाचगणसिद्धसमाकुलाय ।
सिद्धोरगग्रहगणेन्द्रनिषेविताय , शार्दूलचर्मवसनाय नम: शिवाय ॥ 6 ॥
O Shiva, you alone are capable of changing the time and events of the universe, you are adored by saints and demons alike and you are served by all beings, celestial bodies and Gods like Indra. O wearer of Tiger’s Skin, I pray to thee.
भस्माङ्गरागकृतरूपमनोहराय , सौम्यावदातवनमाश्रितमाश्रिताय ।
गौरीकटाक्षनयनार्धनिरीक्षणाय , गोक्षीरधारधवलाय नम: शिवाय ॥ 7 ॥
Bow to thee, O Shiva, who is decorated with ashes, who is devoted to his devotees who meditate in peaceful and calm forest, who is looked upon by goddess Parvati (from the corner of her eyes) and who is white as milk.
आदित्य सोम वरुणानिलसेविताय , यज्ञाग्निहोत्रवरधूमनिकेतनाय ।
ऋक्सामवेदमुनिभि: स्तुतिसंयुताय , गोपाय गोपनमिताय नम: शिवाय ॥ 8 ॥
Hail to thee, O Shiva, who is served by the Sun, the Moon, the water and the air (who control all these elements), who resides in the essence of sacrifices and yagna, who is glorified by the Veda and other sacred books and by saints and wise and who is escorted by Nandi.