Guru Basava Vachanas

A Brahmin by caste will be a damned soul..
He stretches his hand to receive the sins of others.
Is he equal to a devotee of god?
Is he equal to devotee of linga?
Saying that they will make carpenter woman Machladevi,
a lady of higher caste,
they make a golden cow,
cook rice in caster-oil and eat it.
What shall I say about them Koodalasangamadeva? -Guru Basava/166/[1]

They sit and worship linga and play unfair games.
It is like hiding behind whitish ox and shooting a deer.
Our Koodalasangamadeva
will not accept worship
from such thieves and lechers. -Guru Basava/167/[1]

During Kritayuga Keedara was centre.
During Tretayuga Varanasi was centre.
During Dvapara Virupaksha was centre.
During Kaliyuga the mountain was the centre.
Not bothering about those four centres of god
believed that Jangama is Linga. -Guru Basava/168/[1]

If a red fellow thinks of a black fellow, can he turn black?
If a black fellow thinks of a red fellow, can he become red?
If a poor man thinks of a rich person, can he become rich?
If a rich man thinks of a poor man, can he become poor?
what can I say of those
boastful entertainers who think
they have become blessed
by thinking of the ancients? -Guru Basava/169/[1]

If you do not do evil, speak evil
and blame the other
what cannot linga do?
What he cannot give?
As he gives whatever you wish
this is the test for devotee of Shiva, Koodalasangamadeva. -Guru Basava/170/[1]

When tanks, streams and wells open up
one may see bubbles, mud and shells.
When the ocean opens itself up
one may see gems and pearls.
When the sharanas of Koodalasanga speak opening their minds
one may see the linga. -Guru Basava/171/[1]

For others I look pure.
Why am I not pure from within?
If I want to touch you and worship
my hands are not pure.
If I want to touch you with my mind
my mind is not pure.
If my feelings are pure
Wont Koodalasanga lift me up saying-
‘come hither’? -Guru Basava/172/[1]

Like a calf caught in the mire
I gasp, looking in all directions.
There is no one to save me, alas,
until Koodalasangamadeva
taking me to be calf
lifts me up by my horns. -Guru Basava/173/[1]

It is Sanga who gives,
and it is Sanga who takes back.
Won’t the germs infest the mouths of those who say
‘it is men who give’?
for all the three worlds our Koodalasangayya gives. -Guru Basava/174/[1]

One who kills is maadiga,
one who eats filth is holeya.
What caste for them, what caste?
Koodalasanga’s sharanas who wish good for all creatures
are of the higher caste. -Guru Basava/175/[1]

Never will I kill animals,
never will I eat for the pleasure of taste,
never will I desire union with others’ wives.
[know that all these create hazels in future.
Make my mind straight like a measuring vessel. -Guru Basava/176/[1]

Why chant a million times and trouble yourself, o mind?
A little song is equal to chanting a million times.
Why do you need chanting, o mind?
See Koodalasanga’s sharanas,
be with them, sing with them and live, o mind. -Guru Basava/177/[1]

If you ask a monkey not to mock, it won’t obey.
If you ask a bandicoot ‘do not dig, it is roof’ it won’t obey.
The uncivilized and bad mouthed are bound to speak ill.
Koodalasangamadeva, their kaayaka it is. -Guru Basava/178/[1]

Like a dog mocking the heavy load of buffalo,
they too won’t believe, or let the believers have faith,
they won’t act, or let the others act,
they cannot tolerate to see devotion in others.
Koodalasangamadeva will hurl them into hell. -Guru Basava/179/[1]

If the wrathful pour water for bathing,
E will be stream of blood.
If sinner offers flower,
it will wound like a sharp sword.
Except Maadara Chennayya
I don’t see anyone who loves.
Except Dohara Kakkayya
I don’t see anyone who loves.
Our Madivala Machayya has expanse of heart.
Koodalasangamadeva these will rush to your help. -Guru Basava/180/[1]

[1] Number indicates at the end of each Vachana is from the book "Vachana", pub: Basava Samiti Bangalore 2012.

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