Lord Shiva's image is one of extreme grace and he is having a white complexion, except for his neck which is dark blue , and in all the images we find him to be tall and well built, with his body usually smeared with ashes , which depicts his frequent visits to the funeral grounds. His forehead is the place where he has his third eye which rests between his eyebrows and this is also called the eye of wisdom through which He is able to decimate to nothingness our various illusions which we have about . Lord Shiva is usually seen as a very young God , and this is the way He is shown is his various images .
While most of the old Hindu records have referred to Him as the angry God , we usually see him to be in a very cheerful mood , so much so, that in many instances, his images are found to reflect a innocence as is aptly referred to as Bhola Shankar ! Lord Shiva is mostly seen sitting in a yogic posture, cross legged , and in a stance of meditation, with his eyes closed . In some instances he is shown with his eyes open , exuding lots of love and affection, and one who sees his, is naturally attracted towards Him, since He stirs up the deepest of emotions within each of us !
He is known to be a God of simplicity and He is said to lead a life of severe austerity along with his family in the simplest of surroundings . He is also a picture of humility, usually found wearing a tiger skin and elephant skin as his dress , and is mostly found in the sitting posture, holding a trident and damaru in each of his first set of hands, and his other two hands are in a state of posture !
Interestingly enough each one of the objects that the Lord holds has certain connotations. For instance, the Damaru is representing the relativity with the sacred sound AUM , and the animal skin that he adorns on his body signifies his ability to control animal nature. On the other hand the trident that he hold in his hand is also representing the three qualities of satvas ( cool and composed ) , rajas ( fond of luxurious living ) and tamas ( filled with anger ) .
He has long flowing hair and wears a garland of snakes around his neck, with some snakes sometimes being seen across his body, as well as on his hands, entwined like bracelets, with all these snakes being symbolic of His contol over sensuality and desires. And when He is depicted in a state of extreme anger, He is shown wearing a garland of skulls ! His other aspect is that the holy river Ganges is supposed to flow from his head down below onto planet Earth .
And yet another aspect of Lord Shiva is that he is shown to be living with his family, and hi is most fond of his wife Godess Parvati, whom He is said to have married only after having subjecting Her to several tests. Yet another interesting aspect is the relationship between Lord Shiva and Parvati , wherein they are shown sitting together on the snowy heights of Mount Kailash, which is symbolic of the equality of the relationship between them. Most of the time we find Godess Parvati sitting next to Lord Shiva on Mount Kailash, sharing with him all the honours that He enjoys .
Lord Shiva has two children, namely Kumara and Ganesha , and he is very fond of both of them . He also has the sacred bull Nandi besides him, which is his vehicle of transport , and is also the very epitome of humility and being very knowledgeable, having taught Hanumanji the secret of the vedas