Author – Pranshu Saxena
Veda Vyas Krishna Dwaipayana states in Mahabharata Drona Parva, Chapter 172
स एष रुद्र भक्तश च केशवॊ रुद्र संभवः
कृष्ण एव हि यष्टव्यॊ यज्ञैश चैष सनातनः
सर्वभूतभवं जञात्वा लिङ्गे ऽरचयति यः परभुम
तस्मिन्न अभ्यधिकां परीतिं करॊति वृषभध्वजः (MBH 7:172:89-90)
Kesava is that devoted worshipper of Rudra who has sprung from Rudra himself. Kesava always worship the Lord Siva, regarding his emblem to be the origin of the universe. In Kesava is always present that knowledge, in consequence of which he views the identity of Brahma with the: universe and that other knowledge by which the Past, the Present and the Future, the near and the remote, are all seen, as if the whole are before his eyes. The gods, the Siddhas and the great Rishis, adore Kesava for obtaining that highest object in the universe, viz., Mahadeva. The Lord Kesava always worshippeth Siva in the Phallic emblem as the origin of all creatures. The God having the bull for his mark cherisheth greater regard for Kesava”.
Bheeshma states in Anushasana Parva
Rudra bhakthya thu krishnena jagat vyaptham mahathmana |
Tham prasadhya thadha devam bhadaryam kila bharatha |
Arthath priya harathwam cha sarva lokeshu vai yadhaa |
Prapthavaaneva rajendra suvarnaakshan maheswaraath | (MBH 13:14:10-11)
“It is in consequence of the devotion of the high-souled Krishna to the illustrious Rudra whom he gratified. O Bharata, in the retreat of Vadari, by penances, that he (Krishna) has succeeded in pervading the entire universe. O king of kings, it is through Maheswara of celestial vision that Vasudeva has obtained the attribute of universal agreeableness,–an agreeableness that is much greater than what is possessed by all articles included under the name of wealth”.
“Yuge yuge thu krushnena thoshitho vai maheswara |
Bhakthya paramaya chaiva prathi sruthwa mahatmana |” (MBH 13:14:13)
“In every new Yuga has Krishna (by such penances) gratified Mahadeva. In every Yuga has Mahadeva been gratified with the great devotion of the high-souled Krishna“.
The following were the words spoken by Lord Shiva himself about Krishna’s Shiva-Bhakti in Sauptika Parva:
सत्यशौचार्जव तयागैस तपसा नियमेन च
कषान्त्या भक्त्या च धृत्या च बुद्ध्या च वचसा तथा
यथावद अहम आराद्धः कृष्णेनाक्लिष्टकर्मणा
तस्माद इष्टतमः कृष्णाद अन्यॊ मम न विद्यते (MBH 10:7:60-61)
“With truth, purity, sincerity, resignation, ascetic austerities, vows, forgiveness, devotion, patience, thought, and word, I have been duly adored by Krishna of pure deeds. For this
there is none dearer to me than Krishna”.
In Harivamsa Purana lord Krishna himself states : second Parva, chapter 74 verse 34
“ahaM brahmA kapilo yo.apyanantaH |
putrAH sarve brahmaNashchAtivIrAH |
tvattaH sarve devadeva prasUtA |
evaM sarveshaH kAraNAtmA tvamIDyaH |”
“O the lord of lords [Shiva]! Myself, brahma, kapila, ananta (sheSha), all the valiant sons of brahma who conquered over the internal enemies – all are created from you. Hence you are the lord of all. Hence you, the lord of all, are worthy of praise”.
In Harivamsa Purana Brahma, Markandeya and all celestials gather there to witness that fight between Shiva and Krishna. Brahma says to markandeya that the previous night, Brahma had seen a dream where he had seen Shiva in Hari’s form wearing yellow clothes, holding conch and discus and riding on the Garuda; and Vishnu was seen in Shiva’s form holding trident wearing crescent moon.
Then Markandeya composes and sings then and there, a hymn to “Hari-Hara” (HariHara Stotram), which is a beautiful hymn sung commonly for both Shiva and Kesava.
That shows the oneness of both the gods. None is greater. None is lesser.