The Thirumantiram is a classic spiritual poetry from the 5th century by Thirumular, and one of the first books to use the term Shaiva Siddhanta. Scholars believe that the veneration of Lord Shiva as the Cosmic Dancer and Lord of Dance, Nataraja, starting from South Indian Saiva traditions. Every shade of every iconography of a deity represents some spiritual truth which can be experienced by sadhakas even today. That is the beauty of Sanatana Dharma – it is eternal because it can eternally relived by those who are sincere in their quest.
But why does Nataraja dance? What else will the inner being of a sadhaka do when it enters into and experiences the condition of limitless freedom that is liberation: freedom from past memories and future expectations, freedom from the incessant tiresome grinding of the calculative ego, freedom from the cage of the body, freedom even from death and rebirth but most importantly freedom from effort and the failure of effort. Then the seeker realizes just a little bit about the inner state of the One who is called Shiva and because it cannot be adequately expressed or captured in words, all he can do is dance to a rhythm that emanates from the Divine damaru in the hands of the Lord of Dance..
That Primal Para (Supreme) danced;
Fire held in His hand danced;
His matted locks too danced;
Bliss intoxicated He danced;
With all those celestial eggs, the universe danced;
He danced with Nada
The Dance of Nadanta (nada + anta = end of Nada into Bindu)! (Thirumanthiram: 2751)
Great Agamas dance
All realms dance
Entire existence dances
With the Nada He dances
The dance that comes from the Bliss of Knowledge (Thirumanthiram: 2729)