Ever thankful am I to all of those who helped me understand the grammar of
the word shivaushadhi. I must once again admit that I am but a humble child
in the presence of the great intelligence of this community.
I am inquirying to better understand the classification of Stotras. It would
be most auspicious if anyone could assist me clarifying the differences &
definitions of the devotional hymns such as those of Adi Sankaracarya.
Am I correct to believe that the Kaalabhaiaravashtakam is called an Ashtakam
because Asta means 8 & it has 8 verses (plus the phalashruti)?
Does the term stotra define a hymn with specific number of verses, making it
different from an 8 versed Ashtakam Or does an Astakam fall under the
category of a Stotram?
I hope I am making sense, if not please pardon my ignorance.
If a Stotra is used as a sort of “Umbrella Term” what are the requirements
of a hymn to become a stotra ? Are there ways to classify the different
types of hymns considered to be stotras? For instance in the same way that
there are so very many different types of Meters classified by chandas
If I understand correctly the Vedas & even smriti texts follow the rules of
chandas but a stotra doesn't? I was hoping to discover if there was a way to
define the meters of a stotra & if there was an advanced classification
system that perhaps Adi Shankaracharya used to write his amazing hymns.
I trust that my inquiry is not to difficult to understand as I am having a
hard time comprehending the standards used for classification of devotional
hymns & the sacred texts.
I hope to utilize this information by amending it to a portion of my
website focused on helping individuals like myself, who have no guru or
mandir outside of the internet, understand the branches of vedanga via
resources, references & examples that I was not able to find elsewhere.
I think I understand the difference between Slokas, Stutis, Bhajans,
(kirtans & Zikrs which aren't hindu, or are they?) & Stotra's. I would love
to make a comprehensive layout / list that showed the differences &
parallels between the many beautiful ways to express divinity through sound
Thank you so much for your patience & for your time. Blessings to the divine
beings which make up this great community,