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The symbolism of the Trishul


The most recognized symbol of Lord Shiva is the Trishul, the Trident. The Trishul is such a powerful symbol of the Lord that when one seesit, one thinks of Adiyogi Shiva. What makes the Trishul such a powerful symbol of Shiva are its three prongs and there are multiple interpretations of these. 

Let us understand a few of these from the perspective of being a Sushumna Kriya Yogi.

The purpose of life is to achieve true bliss (sat-chitt-ananda). Bliss is possible if we have no pain. Shul (pronounced as shool) means pain. So the three prongs of the trishul representpain from three sources. What are these three sources of pain?• Adhidaivika literally means pertaining to the daiva or fate, unseen forces and gods.• Adhibhautika literally means pertaining to the bhuta or living beings.• Ādhyātmika literally means pertaining to the ātma or the body (and the mind).

The trishul thus is a weapon which destroys all the three sources of pain. 

Sushumna Kriya yoga handed over to us by Adiyogi is a kind of a trishul – it helps us go beyond pain in all the three realmsand achieve divine bliss. 

It is for this reason why all our invocations end with three “Om Shanti” because they mean a 

prayer for peace in all the three realms. The world inside us(Ādhyātmika), the one outside us (Adhibhautika) and the one on which we have no control on and is unknown to us (Adhidaivika).


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