Guru Basava Vachanas

If you grace,
a log will sprout,
if you grace,
barren cattle will give milk,
if you grace,
all poison will be nectar,
if you grace,
all kinds of things appear before the eyes, Koodalasangamadeva. -Guru Basava/256/[1]

Wherever they see water, they take a dip.
Wherever they see a tree, they go round it.
Those who appreciate water that dries up,
and trees that wither away
what do they know of you Koodalasangamadeva? -Guru Basava/257/[1]

Look at the tenacity
of saving water bubble
binding it in iron frame.
Worship the great benefactor Koodalasangayya
and be saved.
Don’t be sure of the body. -Guru Basava/258/[1]

For water, lily is decoration,
for ocean, wave is decoration,
for woman, good quality decoration,
for the sky, moon the decoration,
for sharanas of our Koodalasangamadeva
sacred ash on forehead is decoration. -Guru Basava/259/[1]

If spoken, must be like string of pearls.
If spoken, must be like luster of ruby
If spoken, must be like translucent crystal
If spoken, linga must say yes, yes in acceptance.
If you speak but do not act bound by it
how will Koodalasangamadeva cherish you? -Guru Basava/260/[1]

Being careful in speech, but wrongful in action,
the linga you hold will be a deadly serpent.
You cannot speak, you cannot move.
Lingadeva is the ordeal.
As poor man’s anger is death to his jaws
it reaches you nowhere Koodalasangamadeva -Guru Basava/261/[1]

What if you read a hundred books? Or,
Listen to a hundred things?
Desire will not leave you, anger will not go away.
What use pouring water in ablution?
Seeing the born pretenders whose minds are not with their words
Koodalasangamadeva will just laugh. -Guru Basava/262/[1]

The earth is the same,
for the home of untouchables and for the temple.
Water is the same,
for washing dirt and for ablution.
Caste is the same,
for one who knows the self.
Fruit is the same,
for six darshanas of liberation.
Stance is the same,
for one who knows Koodalasangamadeva. -Guru Basava/263/[1]

I was born just a blade of grass
among paddy plants.
Shall I say I am a devotee?
Shall I say I deserve?
Though I eat the leftovers of sharanas of Koodalasanga
will I be equal to their footwear? -Guru Basava/264/[1]

Others’ women, please,
one should not see or speak to.
Please, don’t be like a dog following sheep.
For one single desire
Koodalasangamadeva will immerse you in hell
for a thousand years. -Guru Basava/265/[1]

As rigorously just, he need not oblige,
Opposing the world, the sharana is not afraid of any one,
as he dwells in effulgence of emperor Koodalasangamadeva. -Guru Basava/266/[1]

After the coronation
should one search for the features of the king?
After worshiping linga
should one search for caste?
Koodalasangamadeva said bod
of devotee is my body. -Guru Basava/267/[1]

Why worry about others?
Aren’t they enough, our own worries?
Whether Koodalasangamadeva loves or not
is worry enough to spread across and cover myself. -Guru Basava/268/[1]

The wealth of a sinner is for repentance
and not for offering to the worthy.
A dog’s milk is for dog
and not for making panchamrita.
All money earned,
but not for sharanas of Koodalasanga
is mere waste. -Guru Basava/269/[1]

Sin and virtue are one’s own inclinations.
If you speak gently and say ‘ayya’ it is heaven,
if you are rough and say ‘hey, you’ it is hell.
In the very words ‘o god, o master, o devotee, hail you’
Kailasa will become handy Koodalasangamadeva. -Guru Basava/270/[1]

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

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