Shivoham! (was RE: Unreal actions and actors)

Allan Curry un824 at FREENET.VICTORIA.BC.CA
Tue Jul 15 12:54:56 CDT 1997

Dear Gregory,

With reference to the quote following you asked...

>This sounds interesting, but could you clarify please?
>>>When an illusion wants itself to be dispelled more than
>>>it wants to *seem* to be, then Shiva (the Destroyer)
>>>seems exactly right for the job...

I'm hardly the one to speak about Saivism, so I'll just talk about my own
personal imaginings here. As I like to picture it, Shiva is the Unmanifest,
Unborn, Brahman-esque Absolute. The "dance" of Shiva includes every
apparent motion (ie. the universe). The "illusion" referred to above is the
assumption of a limited personal self who is somehow separate and apart
from the totality just described. I think the author of the book "Seeing
God Everywhere" (a Ramakrishna Order monk, name of Shraddhananda?) says
that even the motions of the wandering "monkey mind" are also part of the
dance of Shiva. Therefore Shiva, who is also the "destroyer of ignorance",
removes our illusion of separateness by revealing Himself to be us *and*
THAT which was wrongly believed to be separate. If "I" was a wave who
wanted to lose the painfully wrong belief that I was alienated from the
ocean, then Shiva would be that ocean and Shiva would be I. (Shivoham!  say
the Saivites, "I am Shiva"!)

As I might have said in the original post, these thoughts and feelings are
something that move me emotionally or intuitively in a powerful but
irrational way, in the same way that poetry or love itself might be said to
be irrational! It may be wrong intellectually or merely irrelevant but
there you have it. In defense, I can only turn the old Nietzsche quote on
its head and say in reply  "fine arguments are not unbounded Bliss!"  :-)

.....but this kind of bhakti stuff has its own list I think. Can someone tell
me where I can find it?  And of course, if I've misrepresented Shiva in any
important way, I hope others will correct the confusion I may have caused...


Allan Curry


More gems (IMO) from the Tripura Rahasya:

"Like a reflection in a mirror, everything shines in Atman. The knowledge
of Atman is beyond the limitations of time or space. Self-luminous
consciousness is the knower, and that alone is real. Just as space appears
compartmentalized by physical objects, knowledge only appears to be limited
by time and space."

"As the image is pervaded by the mirror, this world is pervaded by the
power of consciousness. All objects in this universe are illuminated by
that light. [...] As an image cannot be separated from a mirror, the
universe cannot be separated from consciousness. This is the glory of the
real self."

"Such light is transcendental and is called supreme Tripura, the supreme
goddess. Knowers of the Vedas call her Brahman and Vaisnaivites call her
Visnu. According to Saivites, she is Shiva; according to Saktas, she is

                        OM NAMAH SHIVAYA!

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