Paramashiva, Paramaśiva, Parama-shiva: 6 definitions



Paramashiva means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

The Sanskrit term Paramaśiva can be transliterated into English as Paramasiva or Paramashiva, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

[«previous next»] — Paramashiva in Shaivism glossary
Source: Kashmir Saivism

Paramasiva = Purnahanta = The Perfect I-Consciousness. He is all sounds, all letters, all words, all sentences, all Tattvas, and all existence. There is nothing that He is not. He has five powers: Sarva Kartritvam, Sarva Jnatvam, Purnatvam, Nityatvam, and Vyapaktvam (power of performing any and all acts, all knowledge, all fullness, eternality, and all-pervasiveness). These powers become limited in the individual soul in the following Tattvas: KalA, Vidya, RAga, KAla, and Niyati.

Source: McGill: The architectural theory of the Mānasāra (shaivism)

Paramaśiva (परमशिव).—Parama Śiva is the inert and formless state of absolute transcendence beyond all categories in which śiva, divine agency, śakti, its instrumentaiity (energy or power), and bindu, its poteney (pure materiality in a nuclear state), are in perfect union. This undifferentiated state of śiva, śakti and bindu in and as Parama Śiva is disturbed when “being discerns itself”, so to speak, effecting a tension in the equilibrium of bindu. As a result, divine agency and instrumentality are differentiated.

Shaivism book cover
context information

Shaiva (शैव, śaiva) or Shaivism (śaivism) represents a tradition of Hinduism worshiping Shiva as the supreme being. Closely related to Shaktism, Shaiva literature includes a range of scriptures, including Tantras, while the root of this tradition may be traced back to the ancient Vedas.

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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

[«previous next»] — Paramashiva in Purana glossary
Source: Shiva Purana - English Translation

Viśvedeva (विश्वेदेव) is the name of a deity corresponding to a “Rudraksha with fourteen faces” (Caturdaśamukha), according to the Śivapurāṇa 1.25, while explaining the greatness of Rudrākṣa:—“[...] a Rudrākṣa with fourteen faces (caturdaśamukha) is the highest Śiva [viz., Paramaśiva]. It shall be worn on the head with great devotion. It quells all sins”.

Purana book cover
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The Purana (पुराण, purāṇas) refers to Sanskrit literature preserving ancient India’s vast cultural history, including historical legends, religious ceremonies, various arts and sciences. The eighteen mahapuranas total over 400,000 shlokas (metrical couplets) and date to at least several centuries BCE.

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Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)

[«previous next»] — Paramashiva in Shaktism glossary
Source: Google Books: Manthanabhairavatantram

Paramaśiva (परमशिव) refers to the “Supreme Śiva”, according to the Manthānabhairavatantra, a vast sprawling work that belongs to a corpus of Tantric texts concerned with the worship of the goddess Kubjikā.—Accordingly, “The goddess (Kubjikā, as the Vidyā) of thirty-two (syllables) who is Supreme Śiva’s energy [i.e., paramaśiva-kalā], is Kaulinī (who possesses an) adamantine body (vajradehā). She has come down along the Path of Meru and is the five sacred seats (that is, the Five Praṇavas) at the beginning and end (of her Vidyā), and the best of the gods bow to her. In the division (she is) the New and the Full Moon (amā and pūrṇā) and is endowed with the parts (pada) and instruments (karaṇa) (of the Vidyā). She is the sixteen(fold) Command and is well energized (sudīptā) by the seven Peak (Syllables). (She is) Nityā, who quells the fear of phenomenal existence. O mistress (svāminī)! Tell (me) the Vidyā”.

Shaktism book cover
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Shakta (शाक्त, śākta) or Shaktism (śāktism) represents a tradition of Hinduism where the Goddess (Devi) is revered and worshipped. Shakta literature includes a range of scriptures, including various Agamas and Tantras, although its roots may be traced back to the Vedas.

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General definition (in Hinduism)

[«previous next»] — Paramashiva in Hinduism glossary
Source: Dharma Inc: The 36 Tattvas of Śakta-Śaiva Dharma

Paramasiva is not an eternal thing that has form and substance. Nor is it a concept, as it lies beyond the reach of conceptual understanding. Paramaśiva is nothing but pure “Awareness-Light” (prakasa), “stir of blissfulness” (spanda). It is dependent upon nothing and all is dependent upon it. It is eternally fresh and immediate (nitya) and absolutely without limitation/free (svatantrya). It is Ultimate Potency (parasakti). It has no set pattern of manifestation such as the seed in relation to the tree, nor compulsion to manifest itself as material existence. Yet still, here we are, and this “is”. It is beyond subject-object distinctions and yet playfully hosts all such distinctions (lila) without itself getting bound.

Paramasiva is who we all are at essence.  Not only is it our most essential reality of being, it is the formless base giving rise to, and hosting our sense of individuality and the variegation of the entire manifest world.  It unconditionally hosts our ignorant choices (through which we exercise our limited version of Paramasiva’s Pure Freedom) that cause us suffering and bondage to the wheel of karma and the cycle of repeated birth – death – and rebirth.

Yet Paramasiva is not a “god”.  It is not a separate being. Paramasiva is far from the sense of separateness and purpose that a god (or any individual being) needs to exist.  It has no sacred books, nor commandments to give, nor covenants with followers.  It doesn’t need nor require worship or supplication.  There is nothing one can do to gain its favor or to “fall from its grace”.  There is no heaven where it lives, nor a force of evil it battles.  It did not “create” us or anything else for that matter.

Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit dictionary

[«previous next»] — Paramashiva in Sanskrit glossary
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Paramaśiva (परमशिव):—[=parama-śiva] [from parama > para] (with ācārya and vendra-sarasvatī) m. Name of authors.

context information

Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family (even English!). Closely allied with Prakrit and Pali, Sanskrit is more exhaustive in both grammar and terms and has the most extensive collection of literature in the world, greatly surpassing its sister-languages Greek and Latin.

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