Nandi -A Meditative Bull

Nandi(nanthi) holy cow is the bull vahana of Shiva. In Shiva temples, It is placed just opposite the entrance to the shrine containing the image of Shiva. Nandi is acting not only as Shiva’s guardian, but also as a constant lover. As nandi mimics the place of every lover who comes to stand before the deity, he is often revered as a model lover.


The word “Nandi” is came from the ancient Indian Language of Sanskrit. It is a sanskrit word. One theory about Nandibull is that it derived from Tamil word “Pandi” meaning bull. Ancient Tamils, considered the bull as a sign of bravery and courage.The bull was known in past India as Nandikeshvara, the Lord of Joy, often represented as a man with a bull’s head. Nandikeshvara was a rishi who offered favour to Shiva by guarding his door.

In Hinduism

Vehicle of Shiva: The bull is Shiva’s primary vehicle and is the principal gana (follower) of Shiva. Lord Shiva has various names describing his association with Nandi. Vrishavahanamurti, the form of Shiva resting against Nandi, is the form he assumes when blessing devotees with freedom from the cycle of existence. In one puranic story, it is stated that once Siva and Parvati were playing a game of dice. For any game there has to be an umpire, who has to declare who is the winner. Shiva and Parvati agreed to have the divine bull as the umpire. Nanthi is a favorite of Siva, as he is Siva’s vehicle. Although Siva lost the game, NandiBull declared him the winner.

What Makes Nandi A Meditative Bull?

Nandi is a symbolism of eternal waiting, because waiting is considered the greatest virtue in Indian culture. One who knows how to simply sit and wait is naturally meditative. Nandi is Shiva’s closest accomplice because he is the essence of receptivity. Before you go into a temple, you must have the quality of Nandi – to simply sit. Meditation means you are willing to just listen to existence, to the ultimate nature of creation. You have nothing to say, you simply listen. That is the quality of Nandi – he just sits, alert. This is very important: he is alert. He is not sleepy or sitting in a passive way. He is sitting very active, full of alertness and life, but no expectation or anticipation. That is meditation. Just waiting, not for anything in particular.

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metturNandi -A Meditative Bull