Guru Basava Vachanas

If one can accept whatever that comes
that is precept.
If one doesn’t hide what one has and doesn’t deceive
that is the precept.
If one doesn’t act wrongly,
that is the precept.
If one’s words don’t go false,
that is the precept.
If sharanas of Koodalasangama come
offering the wealth to them
that is the precept. -Guru Basava/271/[1]

If the king comes and camps there,
can that place be called a colony of untouchables?
The house of those who have linga
should be considered Kailasa.
As it is saidChandaalavaatikaayam
sh ivabhaktah stlzitho yadi
Tatshrenihi shivalokasya tadgriham shivamandiram
Don’t listen to the pretentious people of the world.
Kailasa is where Koodalasanga is. -Guru Basava/272/[1]

When those that promised to come did not come
I looked anxiously at the road.
Whom shall I dispatch, oh, whom shall I dispatch?
Whom shall I request holding their feet?
If the sharanas of Koodalasanga don’t come
I will dispatch my life-breath. -Guru Basava/273/[1]

What if the water from bathroom is clear’?
What does it matter where the fake coin is?
What if you speak of mango of the skies?
It cannot be plucked or tasted.
The one without the spiritual experience of Koodalasanga,
what does it matter where he is, or how he is? -Guru Basava/274/[1]

If a poor cow falls into a mire
what else can it do but beat its legs?
Oh Shiva, Shiva, I am going down, sinking.
Lift me up please, to your heart.
I am a cow and you the master of cows.
Before I get beaten as straying cattle,
o master, please see to it
that you are not blamed Koodalasangamadeva. -Guru Basava/275/[1]

A pitiable Brahmin, however much a devotee he becomes,
he doesn’t give up being obliged to the noose of the sacred thread.
A gardner, however much a devotee he becomes,
he doesn’t give up being obliged to the Brahma of the wells.
A merchant, however much a bhakta he becomes,
he doesn’t give up being obliged to the Benaka of weighing stone.
A goldsmith, however much a bhakta he becomes,
he doesn’t give up being obliged to goddess Kalikadevi.
I am not obliged to any,
to your sharanas I am obliged Koodalasangamadeva. -Guru Basava/276/[1]

So fast the devotion is reduced by half, see brothers.
Touching the head the first day,
touching the hand the next day,
mere sleepy nod on the third day.
If you do not give up what you hold on to
Koodalasangamadeva will help you to cross over.
Otherwise, he will let you drown in the midstream. -Guru Basava/277/[1]

The land of Bali, the armor of Karna,
the skeleton of Khachara, the meat of Shibi,
all wasted without purpose.
As it is saidShivabhaktirnatikraniya
yaddanam ca vidheeyate
Nishphalam tu bhaveeddanain rauravani narakarn vrajeet
The wealth of the one who bequeaths for the sake of fame not knowing the sharanas of Koodalasanga goes wasted. -Guru Basava/278/[1]

Like a deer caught in the net-I am.
Like lost deer kid-I gasp.
Whom shall I turn to?
You are the mother, father and all relations
Oh, Koodalasangamadeva. -Guru Basava/279/[1]

If it is a fight with the strong
one may win, one may lose.
The words of the brave are tested in the battlefield.
By serving sharanas of our Koodalasanga
if one becomes poor, one’s wealth worn out,
that one is worthy of worshipful linga. -Guru Basava/280/[1]

‘Come Basava, tell me,
are there bhaktas in the mortal world?’
‘No one, no one, no one,
I am the oniy bhakta
all others bhaktas of mortal world are jangamas’,
linga is you, Koodalasangamadeva. -Guru Basava/281/[1]

Like smearing black soot to berries
and selling them to feed this belly
fearful of death, debts and poverty
I sought your refuge.
Which shall I call falsehood?
Which shall I belittle?
You only know that Koodalasangamadeva,
I am one who is just intent on feeding his belly. -Guru Basava/282/[1]

Seeds grew, grains harvested,
nest broken, stacked,
thrashed, winnowed, measured,
pots filled, centre pole broken,
the threshing floor is undone. -Guru Basava/283/[1]

Bringing whitish blades of grass,
leaves of oleanders,
and sand from the banks of the stream
come, all little children,
let us pray Gown,
that incomparably graceful Koodalasangamadeva
be our husband. -Guru Basava/284/[1]

Mingling with low and mean,
it is like boulder of the hill
playing with bottle gourd,
If one unites with unworthy
destruction cannot be averted Koodalasangamadeva. -Guru Basava/285/[1]

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

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