ADHIDĒVATĀS And SHAKTI (Superintending Deities and the Forces): [ಆಧಿ ದೇವತೆ ಮತ್ತು ಶಕ್ತಿ]

According to the Vachana-writers, the universe has a twofold cause – Shakti, the material cause, and Parashiva, the efficient case. For them these causes are not external to each other like clay and potter; rather they are ontologically one, only logically different. Shakti is always dependent on Parashiva both for its existence and its function. It exists in him un-manifest and dormant sometimes and becomes manifest and active at other times. Its manifestation is called creation (Srushti) [ಸೃಷ್ಟಿ] and its retraction pralaya. Each of the various stages of the manifestation of Shakti is guided and controlled by Parashiva. Like the different stages of the evolving Shakti, the guiding and controlling forms of Parashiva have different names. The forms of Parashiva, called Adhidevata’s (superintending deities), are therefore, not different from Parashiva. Thus it is said that Kriya-Shakti[ಕ್ರೀಯಾ ಶಕ್ತಿ]is guided and controlled by Brahma, Jnyāna-Shakti [ಜ್ಞಾನ ಶಕ್ತಿ] by Vishnu, Icchā-Shakti [ಇಚ್ಛಾ ಶಕ್ತಿ ] by Rudra, Ādi-Shakti by Ishwar [ಈಶ್ವರ] and Parā-Shakti by Sadāshiva.

Sometimes the relationship between the superintending deities and the Shaktis is perceived in the following way: the earth element, which is another form of Kriya-Shakti is controlled and guided by Brahma who creates the universe; the water element, which is another form of Jnyāna-Shakti, by Vishnu who maintains the universe (just as water which prevents the particles from falling asunder); the fire element, which is another form of Ichā-Shakti, by Rudra who retracts the universe (just as fire destroys whatever it comes across); the air element, which is another form of Ādi-Shakti, by Ishwara, who transports the bound souls to proper places in accordance with their karma (just as the wind moves things); the space element, which is another form of Parā-Shatki, by Sadashiva who liberates the bound souls in accordance with their spiritual merits (just as the space makes room for free movement for things).

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Guru Basava Vachana

Akkamahadevi Vachana

[1] From the book "Vachana", pub: Basava Samiti Bangalore 2012.