Our Kamesh usually sends me a lot of Pictures quite often raising his doubts. The latest one sent by him is this.
He has asked : God looks like mahavishnu but they have written Brahma sastha. Could you please help me understand this.
But this is neither Maha Vishnu nor Brahma ! And it has nothing to do with Dharma Sastha also...
Yes ! its Murugan !
Brahma Sastha is another form of Murugan...
A tantrik text named Kumara tantra explains 16 different forms of Murugan.Lord Skanda or Subrahmanya is known by various names. Each name has got its own significance and points out a particular form or aspect of the Lord. And Brahma Sastha is 12th form of Subramanya.
(ive written a separate book in Tamil on the different 16 forms of Murugan titled "Aarumukanin Arpudha Vadivangal" published by Trishakthi Publications)
Here the word Sastha means one who commands, one who orders... (Thus Hariharaputra is the master of the universe who commands every beings. But here Murugan is called Brahma Sastha - One who punished Brahma or One who ordered as Brahma)
According to mythology, Brahmā, the Lord of Creation and first among the Hindu Trinity, once had pride over his knowledge. So Lord Subramanya decided to test him. He asked Brahma to explain the meaning of pranava mantra. But Brahmā was unable to give Muruga a proper reply.
Lord Muruga punished Lord Brahma for his ignorance of the meaning of the Pranava mantra, by a hard knock on his vortex with His fist and then imprisoned him. After this, the creation came to a stand still becoz Brahma was imprisoned. So Lord Murugan assumed the creation duties of Lord Brahma. And most i,[osrtant point to be noted here is, at this stage, Valli being Murugan's Kriya Shakthi, assumed the role of his Consort - thus empowering him for the process of creation. (there are few more interesting aspects of the story which Iam not elaborating here)
This form of Murugan is called Brahma Sastha. In this posture, He holds a japamaalai in his upper right hand and a kamandalam in his upper left hand. The bottom two hands show Abhayam and Varadham.
Devotees can gain knowledge and gnanam by worshipping this Muruga in the Brahma Sastha form.
Temples like Kumara Kottam, Siruvapuri, Porur, Kazhugumalai Vettuvaan Kovil, Seyur, Gnanamalai etc Lord Muruga is installed in the sanctum in the form of Brahma Sastha.