The famous Bilvashtakam extols the virtues of the vilva leaf and Shiva’s love for it. The ashtakam is rendered here by Sounds of Isha.

Lyrics & Meaning

Tridalam triguNaakaaram trinetram cha triyaayudham
trijanma paapasamhaaram eka Bilvam shivaarpaNam

I offer the bilva patra to Shiva. This leaf embodies the three qualities of sattva, rajas and tamas. This leaf is like the three eyes, and the sun, moon and fire. It is like three weapons. It is the destroyer of sins committed in three earlier births. I perform pooja for Shiva with the bilva patra.

Akhanda bilvapatreNa poojite nandikeshware
shudhyantii sarva paapebhyo eka bilvam shivaarpaNam

I offer the bilva patra to Shiva. I complete the pooja for Nandikeshwara by the bilva patra to him, and thus become free of sin

Shaaligram shilaama ekaam vipraaNaam jaatu charpayet
somayadnya mahaapuNyam eka bilvam shivaarpaNam

I offer the bilva patra to Shiva. This leaf is soft and free of blemish. It is complete in itself. It is like three branches. I perform pooja for Shiva with the bilva patra.

DantikotisahasraNi vajape shataanicha
kotikanyaa mahaadaanam eka bilvam shivaarpaNam

The offering of Bilva is greater in power than yagnas and sacrifices.

Laxmyaa stnam unpanam mahadevasya cha priyam
bilva vruksham prayachchhaami eka bilvam shivaarpaNam

The bilva tree was created by Goddess Lakshmi. Lord Shiva has great affection for the bilva tree. I perform pooja for Shiva with the bilva patra.

Darshanam bilva vrukshasya sparshanam paapanaashanam
aghorapaapa samhaaram eka bilvam shivaarpaNam

Beholding the bilva and coming in contact with it destroys all sin. I perform pooja for Shiva with the bilva patra.

Kashi kshetra nivasam cha kalabhairava darshanam
Prayaage maadhavam drushtvaa Ekabilvam shivaarpanam

I offer one leaf of the bilva to Shiva, after being in the city of Kashi, beholding Kala Bhairava, and visiting the temple of Madhava

Moolato brahma roopaaya madhyato Vishnu roopiNe
agrataha shiva roopaaya eka bilvam shivaarpaNam

The lower part of bilva is Brahma, the middle is Vishnu and the upper is Shiva himself. I perform pooja for Shiva with the bilva patra.

Editor’s Note: Bilvashtakam is part of the album Trigun, available for purchase and download at Isha Downloads.