Lord Sarabeswarar is another form of Lord Shiva who took this form to bring down the anger and ferociousness of Lord Narasimha. Lord Sarabeswarar took the form of Yazhi bird with human body and eagle's wings having Godess Durga and Godess Maha Prathyangira Devi in each of his wings. In his four hands,he holds a deer, battle axe, snake and fire. Bhairava and Agni are contained in his abdomen. Two of his four feet rest on a mountain. The benign grace of Lord Veera Sarabeswara is said to protect devotees from all kinds of malevolent forces.
GODDESS UGRA PRATHIYANKIRA DEVI: Mother is the divine consort of of Lord Veera Sarabeswara. She is also known as Atharvana Bhadrakali. She is also referred to as Aparajitha – the invincible. She is believed to have emerged from the fire emanating from the third eye of Lord Sarabeswarar. It was Goddess Prathiyankara who aided in subsiding the anger of Lord Narasimha. She is lion – faced and is seated on a lion. Her four hands bear a noose in the form of a snake, trident, hand-drum and bowl (kabaala paathram). She wears a garland of skulls. In this Kali yuga, where evil is manifest in varied forms, Goddess Prathiyankara is regarded as the saviour of mankind, alleviating the sufferings of humanity. She possesses the power to offset the influences of black magic. Though fearsome in appearance, she is the very embodiment of benevolence and grace to her devotees.
MYTHOLOGY: According to Hindu mythology Lord Shiva sends Veerabhadra to quell the anger of Lord Narasimha after the latter had vanquished the demon King Hiranyakashipu. Unable to control the turbulence of Lord Narasimha, His anger did not subside. Veerabhadra pleads to Lord Shiva for help. Lord Shiva, then took a fearsome pose called Sarabeswara.
A shaft of light emantes from Lord Shiva’s third eye. This enters Veerabhadra who assumes the magnificent form of Lord Sarabeswara. Srasbam means the mixture of human and animal form. This is depicted in temple deities, for example the twelve-foot icon of Sri Veera Sarabeswara at Chennai Skandasramam is half-bird and half-beast, with two wings bearing Goddess Prathiyankara and Goddess Soolini on either side. The face is that of a Yali. Mythology has it that Sarabeswarar pacified Lord Narasimha by fanning his two wings.
MARKANDEYA PURANA: This is a slightly differing version towards the end. In the Satyayuga, Lord Narashimma, Lord Vishnu’s Avatar killed the unruly king Hiranyakashibu by tearing the body tissues and tasting his blood. By the anger in the body and malicious effect of human blood the Narashima Avatar of Lord Vishnu had forgotten his spirituality. To bestow compassion Lord Shiva came down as Sarabeswar Avatar. This is the form of Antaranda Pakshi which is in combination form of bird, animal and human. It had huge eagle wings, yaali face, eagle nose with eight legs. This represented the all pervasive Lord so as to rekindle Lord Narashima who is also the part and parcel of the Universe. By this act, a new incomparable miraculous power, Shakti was created by Sri Sarabeshwar with all panchabuthas, hence the genesis of the new Shakti was referred as Sri Prathyangiraa Devi.
Lord Narashimha creates a counter attack Sarabeswara in the form of a two headed Ganda Berunda. Thereupon, Sarabeshwara took Siva’s fierce form, Bhairava and created Goddesses Pratyangira from his third eye. Prathyangira ate the bird, displaying rage the like of which the gods had never seen before. They praised her as she calmed Narasimha down by sitting on his lap.
THUTHI - Sri Sarabeswarar Potri.
Aanavam azhikka vandha sarabaysvaraa potri
aanandham alikka vandha sarguruvay potri
saththiyam nilaikka vandha sarabayswaraa potri
saadhanai arulum engal sarabayswaraa potri potri.
Om saalu vesaaya vithmahe
Pakshi rajaaya theemahi
Thanno Saraba, prachothayaath.
Hara Hara Mahadeva.
(drafts Gods and Goddesses)
Yogi Ananda Saraswathi