In ancient Vedic scriptures, Rudraksha beads have been described to have originated from the tears (Aksha) of Lord Shiva (Rudra) while performing meditation. Legend has it that Tripurasura, the name given to the three demons : Vidyunmali, Tarakaksha and Viryavana, were sons of the demon Tarakasur. They were three powerful demons who were protected by boons that nobody can destroy. They were causing havoc in the divine worlds of gods. Only transcendental concentration, powerful meditation and patience could bring them along a single axis making them vulnerable to destruction.
Feeling defeated and discouraged by the demons' negative powers, all Gods prayed to the Almighty Shiva to destroy these demons who were causing calamities everywhere. Lord Shiva went into deep mediation for thousands of years to align these demons along one axis. Once lineated, Lord Shiva opened his eyes and destroyed these demons completely.
As he was opening his eyes after years of meditation, he beheld the sufferings and pangs of the unenlightened beings enmeshed in their struggles and confusion. Out of compassion, tear drops from his eyes fell on the earth and turned into seeds that gave rise to Rudraksha trees.
Another legend in the Yogic circles talks of Lord Shiva 'spotting' these beads. Rudraksha is described as a fruit, or its seed, that was pleasing to the eyes of the supreme Yogi Shiva when he first looked at them. It is believed that Shiva, who is considered as the "Adi Yogi" or the First Yogi, discovered these fruits, or their seeds, during his long penances in the Himalayan region in the ancient times.
He was pleased with these distinctive seeds emanating a spectrum of spiritual energies and possessing an inherent warmth even in the cooler weather. His omniscient eyes recognized the seeds' disease fighting energetic qualities and he made them his auspicious ornament.
It is easy to visualize how a Yogi, with ash smeared all over his body, would have taken one look at these seeds and must have found them pleasing to his eyes, and quickly recognized these seeds as an essential aid to help with meditation and protection.
Shiva is seen wearing ornaments that are symbols of power, which have serenity and beauty of their own. While snakes wrap around His neck and arms, tiger's skin covers His Body. He uses intoxicating flowers of dhatura, and applies ash on His body. There is a moon on His forehead and the river Ganges flows from His locks of hair, symbolizing vastness and might. He holds a dumru, a rhythmic musical instrument that is considered to be the creator of Sanskrit language. His permanent abode is Mount Kailash in the Himalayas. Shiva is omnipotent and exists in atoms and cosmos. He controls the cycle of birth and death.
Indians believe that anything that is unusually blissful, beautiful, and powerful or suggests vastness and depth is usually associated with Lord Shiva. It may be death, destruction, extinction, poison, intoxication, the unapproachable Himalayas, tantric practices or the highest forms of yoga, tapasya, music, dance, language, ayurveda and herbal medicines, all take their origin from Lord Shiva. The more we try to define him, the more dimensionless he becomes. Shiva is the most worshiped God of India. Since Lord Shiva is considered the creator and wearer of Rudraksha, this bead is naturally considered to be a symbol of spirituality, fearlessness and vastness. It is a strong source of power for health, peace, happiness, success and prosperity.
Rudraksha beads, also sometimes known as, the mystic beads, are worn for self-empowerment and for bringing about a positive change from within.
The Mahabharata, a Sanskrit epic of ancient India, is considered as the longest poem ever written. It contains within it the stories of righteousness (dharma) and unrighteousness (adharma). One of the legends mentioned in the Mahabharata is that of the exiled warrior prince Arjuna. In a competition attended by the greatest archer Princes from all over the world, Arjuna is the only one who is able to pierce with his arrow the eye of a revolving fish figurine hanging high-up from the ceiling. Adhering to the rules of the competition, he does so while looking at the target's reflection in the vessel of water kept on the floor. Arjuna's unmatched precision in archery wins him the hand of princess Draupadi in marriage. It is said that Arjuna was wearing a special Rudraksha when he performed the feat. This Rudraksha was a 16 Mukhi Rudraksha. Also called the Victory (fai) Rudraksha, the wearer of such a Rudraksha, blessed by a true Guru, is said to never fail in any worthwhile endeavor.