s h a l a g r a m

Russian Foundation of Transpersonal Psychology

International Noosphere Institute

Noosphere Research Institute













Moscow  E-mail shalagram@shalagram.ru



русская версия


Shalagram is a sort of fossilized ammonite. It is oval, striated, umbilicated and ornamented with arborizations on the outside. If these tree-like markings are more, this stone is regarded to be more revered. It is black in colour and is esteemed throughout Nepal and India. It is found in the Kali Gandaki river of Nepal. Found stone is completely shapeless. To "open" it is necessary to hammer it accurately around with slight movements. Then it cleave in two parts showing its true beauty. There are two kinds of Shalagram: with pattern in the form of spiral or circles and they are connected with female aspect; and with pattern in the form of lingam, they embody male aspect. The stone is regarded to be a form of Lord Vishnu. Its origin is described in detail in the Skanda Purana.

It is obligatory for every Hindu to keep at least one Shalagram in the place of worship in the house. These stones are handed down from father to son. They are regarded as precious heirlooms, which should never be given away. It is described in the Atharva Veda that a Brahmin's house without Shalagram is impure. Even the food cooked in such a house is as dirty and unclean as a dog's vomit.

Although Shalagram is regarded to be the metamorphosis of Vishnu, it partakes at the same time of the essence of all other deities. The worship and puja offered to Shalagram is not only to Vishnu but to all the deities. It is most efficacious to drink some water in which Shalagram is washed. This is for remission of sins. For deliverance from sins, simple touching of this sanctified water is sufficient. It bestows perpetual wealth and forgiveness and will also grant health and happiness to the devotee. The worshippers of Shalagram always get happiness in the world and will do right things. After his death, he will enjoy the delights of Swarga or Heaven. Hindus drink the water in which Shalagram is washed with prayers. During puja of Shalagram, it washed in Pancha amrit prepared of five substances, i.e. curd, ghee (purified butter), honey, milk and sugar.

The prayer runs as follows, "Narayana, you are the ruler of the world. It is your pleasure to confer blessings on all created beings. I drink this water with which your sacred feet have been washed; I drink it that I may be absolved of my sins; I pray to you pardon me who am the greatest of sinners".

The Legend Of Gandaki


© Evgueny Faydysh. 2003.
© International Noosphere Institute. Alexey Ivanov, translation, web-design. 2005.