108 Names of the Sun: Surya Ashtottara Shatanamavali #8

Om Akhilagamavedine Namaha, Salutations to the knower of all Agamas or sacred texts. The Vedas, the most ancient and sacred scriptures, hold the Sun as the Soul of the whole manifest Universe. The effulgence of the Vedas merges with AUM as the primal sound and manifests as Surya, the Sun.


akhil Hin. akhila San. adj. whole, entire, undivided, complete; universal; all.
āgama san. adj. approaching, arrival, origin, income, acquisition of knowledge, science. Traditional doctrines, sacred work, vedas.
ved Hin. veda San. m. (from vid – to know, discover, learn) (adj. vaidika) ‘true knowledge’

In this context, it is interesting to note that agama karma is approaching karma, new actions contemplated as a result of thought. This reinforces the well-known aphorism “thinking creates reality“.

The Sun is greeted with the salutation: Akhilagamavedine, the knower of the sacred texts; the effulgence of the Vedas merged with the AUM of creation and manifested as the SUN. As indicated earlier, the vedas are the source of light for all the worlds.

The Imperishable Field

In Rig Veda it is said that knowledge is structured in consciousness – the hymns of the vedas reside in the imperishable field. The field, the place of righteousness (dharmakshetre) is the field, the place of human action (kurukshetre). This indicates the importance of following dharma in order to possess true humanness, for dharma is the foundation of order in all the universes: dharmam moolam jagat.

When one follows dharma, one stablises activity and attention in Atma, the soul principle. Dharma undertakes action for the sake of action only and is free from the fruit of activity. Action is not undertaken for gratification. Swadharma (that dharma, that activity proper to your nature, role) is that you follow the activity that is proper to your station in life, society and culture.

āgama contains the activity of approaching, and acquisition of knowledge. One approaches the Sun in order to acquire knowledge, understanding, integration of learning into daily life. This connects the Sun to the Self as the intellect (faculty of discrimination, viveka, is nearest the Atma in the human person and derives over 80% of its illumination from the Atma. Hence, the teacher of dharma is Sun. The Sun also taught another important figure in history, the servant of Lord Rama, Hanuman.


Hanuman approaches the Sun for learning of Vedas

The Sun Teaches Hanuman the Vedas

Lord Hanuman is mentioned in all versions of Ramayana, the story of Lord Rama. He is Anjaneya, son of Anjana, a vanara woman (vanaras are an extinct race of intelligent simians), his father is Vayu, the Wind God. There are legends of Hanuman (who could leap into the skies) swallowing the Sun, and he was been given many gifts by the other gods. The legend now takes up the education of young Hanuman.

As he grew up, Hanuman sought to educate himself and for this purpose he chose Surya the sun god as his guru saying: “You see everything there is to see in the universe and you know everything there is to know. Please accept me as your pupil.” Surya hesitated. “I don’t have the time,” he said. “During the day I ride across the sky, and at night I am too tired to do anything.”

“Then teach me as you ride across the sky during the day. I will fly in front of your chariot, facing you from dawn to dusk.” Impressed by Hanuman’s zeal and determination, Surya accepted him as his pupil. Thus Hanuman flew before the chariot of the sun god, withstanding the awesome glare, until he became well versed in the four books of knowledge (the Vedas), the six systems of philosophies (darshanas), the sixty-four arts or kalas and the one hundred and eight occult mysteries of the Tantras.

Having become a master of all that he set out to learn, it was now time for Hanuman to pay for his education (guru-dakshina). Surya asserted that watching the devoted pupil study was payment enough for him but when Hanuman insisted on giving something to express his gratitude, the sun god asked him to look after the welfare of his son Sugriva, who was the stepbrother of Vali, the king of monkeys.

Other legends tell that Hanuman obtain 100th part of the effulgence of the Sun and as guru dakshina, married the daughter of the Sun. As Hanuman is famed as celibate, brahmacharya, keep in mind that while legends tell of Hanuman having sons, children of Gods are born by way of sankalpa, not copulation.

Hanuman is known for extraordinary qualities which should be given here for its extraordinary illumination. Hanuman had all the great mental gifts:

  1. To be a good listener.
  2. To listen with attention.
  3. To retain what was listened to.
  4. To preserve what was listened to for discriminating analysis.
  5. To weigh the pros and cons of the lessons learnt through listening.
  6. To understand the meaning of all the lessons learnt intelligently.
  7. To understand the essence of the lessons learnt.
  8. To fuse the lessons with the understanding of eternal truths.


Om Akhilagamavedine Namaha, Salutations to the knower of all Agamas or sacred texts

The Sun is the giver of knowledge of sacred texts; the effulgence of the Sun is manifestation of the Vedas and AUM which gives light, knowledge and understanding to all the worlds



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