A History of Indian Philosophy Volume 5

Southern Schools of Śaivism

by Surendranath Dasgupta | 1955 | 79,816 words | ISBN-13: 9788120804081

This page describes the philosophy of shaiva philosophy according to bhoja and his commentators: a concept having historical value dating from ancient India. This is the fourth part in the series called the “shaiva philosophy in some of the important texts”, originally composed by Surendranath Dasgupta in the early 20th century.

Part 4 - Śaiva Philosophy according to Bhoja and his commentators

Mādhava in his Sarva-darśana-saṃgraha of the fourteenth century refers to a system of philosophy Śaiva-darśana which rejects the view that God of His own will arranges all experiences for us, but that he does so on the basis of our own karma and that this philosophy is based upon the Śaivāgamas, supposed to have been composed by Śiva, Maheśvara. In examining the philosophy of Śrīkaṇtha and Appaya we have seen that they speak of twenty-eight Āgamas, which were all written by Śiva or His incarnations, and that, whether in Dravidian or in Sanskrit, they have the same import. Though it will not be possible for us to get hold of all the Āgamas, we have quite a number of them in complete or incomplete form. On the evidence of some of the Āgamas themselves, they were written in Sanskrit, Prākṛt, and the local country dialects[1]. We also find that, though written by Maheśvara, all the Āgamas do not seem to have the same import. This creates a good deal of confusion in the interpretation of the Śaivāgamas. Yet the differences are not always so marked as to define the special characteristics of the sub-schools of Śaivism.

Bhoja, probably the well-known Bhoja of the eleventh century who wrote Sarasvatī-kaṇthābharana and a commentary on the Yoga-sūtra, wrote also a work called Tattva-prakāśa which has been referred to by Mādhava in his Sarva-darśana-saṃgraha. Mādhava also refers to Aghora-śivācārya, whose commentary on Tattva-prakāśa has not yet been published, but he omits Śñkumāra, whose commentary on Tattva-prakāśa has been published in the Trivendrum Series along with the Tattva-prakāśa. Aghora-śivācārya seems to have written another commentary on the Mṛgendrāgama called the Mṛgendrāgama-vṛtti-dīpikā. In writing his commentary Aghora-śivācārya says that he was writing this commentary, because other people had tried to interpret Tattva-prakāśa with a monistic bias, as they were unacquainted with the Siddhānta of the Agama-śāstras. From the refutation of the Māheśvara school by Śaṅkara in n. 2. 37, we know that he regarded the Māheśvaras as those that held God to be only the instrumental agent of the world and the material cause of the world was quite outside Him. According to the monistic Vedānta of Śaṅkara, Brahman was both the material and the instrumental cause of the world. The world was in reality nothing but Brahman, though it appeared as a manifold world through illusion, just as a rope may appear as a snake through illusion. This is called the vivarta view as opposed to the pariṇāma view, according to which there is a material transformation leading to the production of the world. The pariṇāma view is held by the Sāṃkhyists; the other view is that God is the instrumental agent who shapes and fashions the world out of atoms or a brute māyā, the material force. The Naiyāyikas hold that since the world is an effect and a product of mechanical arrangement, it must have an intelligent creator who is fully acquainted with the delimitations and the potencies of the atomic materials. God thus can be proved by inference, as any other agent can be proved by the existence of the effect. This is also the viewpoint of some of the Śaivāgamas such as the Mṛgendra, Mātaṅga-parameśvara, etc.

Śrīkumāra, in interpreting Tattva-prakāśa, seems to be in an oscillating mood; sometimes he seems to follow the Āgama view of God being the instrumental cause, and sometimes he tries to interpret on the Vedāntic pattern of vivarta. Aghora-śivācārya takes a more definite stand in favour of the Āgama point of view and regards God as the instrumental cause[2]. In our account of Śaivism as explained in the Vāyavīya-saṃhitā, we have seen how in the hands of the Purāṇic interpreters Śaivism had taken a rather definite course towards absolute monism, and how the Sāṃkhya conception oiprakṛti had been utilised as being the energy of God, which is neither different from nor identical with Him. Such a conception naturally leads to some kind of oscillation and this has been noticed in the relevant places.

Mādhava sums up the content of the Śaivāgamas as dealing with three categories, pati, the Lord, paśu, the beings, and pāśa, the bonds, and the four other categories of vidyā, knowledge, kriyā, behaviour or conduct, yoga, concentration, and caryā, religious worship. Now the beings have no freedom and the bonds themselves are inanimate; the two are combined by the action of God.

Bhoja writes his book, Tattva-prakāśa, to explain the different kinds of metaphysical and other categories (tattva) as accepted by the Śaiva philosophy. The most important category is Śiva who is regarded as being cit by which the Śaivas understand combined knowledge and action[3]. Such a conscious God has to be admitted for explaining the superintendence and supervision of all inanimate beings. This ultimate being is all by itself; it has no body and it does not depend upon any thing; it is one and unique. It is also all-pervading and eternal. The liberated individual souls also become like it after liberation is granted to them, but God is always the same and always liberated and He is never directed by any supreme Lord. It is devoid of all passions. It is also devoid of all impurities[4].

Aghora-śivācārya follows the Śaivāgamas like the Mṛgendra or the Mātaṅga-parameśvara in holding that the existence of God can be inferred by arguments of the Naiyāyika pattern. It is, therefore, argued that God has created the world, maintains it, and will destroy it; He blinds our vision and also liberates us. These five actions are called anugraha, which we have often translated, in the absence of a better word, as grace. In reality, it means God’s power that manifests itself in all worldly phenomena leading to bondage and liberation, everything depending upon the karma of the individual. It is quite possible that in some schools of Śaivism this dynamism of God was interpreted as His magnificent grace, and these people were called the Mahā-kāruṇikas. Anugraha, or grace, thus extends to the process of creation. If it were ordinary grace, then it could have been only when the world was already there[5]. This anugraha activity includes creation, maintenance, destruction, blinding the vision of the individuals, and finally liberating them[6]. Śrīkumāra explains the situation by holding that the act of blinding and the act of enlightening through liberation are not contradictory, as the latter applies only to those who have self-control, sense-control, fortitude, and cessation from all enjoyment, and the former to those who have not got them[7]. God thus is responsible for the enjoyable experiences and liberation of all beings through His fivefold action. His consciousness (cit) is integrally connected with His activity. Though God is of the nature of consciousness and in that way similar to individual souls, yet God can grant liberation to individual souls with powers which the individual souls themselves do not possess. Though God’s consciousness is integrally associated with action, it is indistinguishable from it. In other words God is pure thought-activity.

The śakti or energy of Śiva is one, though it may often be diversely represented according to the diverse functions that it performs. Śrīkumāra points out that the original form of this energy is pure bliss which is one with pure consciousness. For the creation of the world God does not require any other instrument than His own energy, just as our own selves can perform all operations of the body by their own energy and do not require any outside help. This energy must be distinguished from māyā. Taking māyā into consideration one may think of it as an eternal energy, called bindu-māyā which forms the material cause of the world[8].

The monistic interpretation as found in Śrīkumāra’s commentary is already anticipated as the Śivādvaita system in the Purāṇas, more particularly in the Sūta-saṃhitā[9].

Śiva arranges for the experiences and liberation of the individual souls in and through His energy alone. The fivefold action, referred to above, is to be regarded as somehow distinguishing the one energy in and through diverse functions.

The object of Tattva-prakāśa is to explain the Śaiva philosophy as found in the Śaivāgamas, describing mainly the categories of pati, paśu, and pāśa. The pati is the Lord and paśu is called aṇu, and the five objects are the five pāśas or bonds. The aṇus are dependent on God and they are regarded as belonging to different classes of bondage. The fivefold objects are those which are due to the mala and which belong to bindu-māyā in different states of evolution of purity and impurity. Śrīkumāra points out that since the souls are associated with mala from eternity, it comes under the sway of the māyā, but since the souls are of the nature of Śiva, when this mala is burnt, they become one with Him. The fivefold objects constituting the bondage are the mala, the karma, the māyā, the world which is a product of māyā, and the binding power[10].

It may be asked, if the energy belongs to God, how can it be attributed to the objects of bondage? The reply is that in reality the energy belongs to the Lord and the force of the pāśa or bondage can only be regarded as force in a distant manner, in the sense that the bondage or the power of bondage is felt in and through the individual soul who receives it from the Lord[11].

The paśus are those who are bound by the pāśa, the souls that go through the cycles of birth and rebirth. In this connection Śrīkumāra tries to establish the identity of the self on the basis of self-consciousness and memory, and holds that these phenomena could not be explained by the Buddhists who believed in momentary selves. These are three kinds; those which are associated with mala and karma, those which are associated only with mala (these two kinds are jointly called vijñāna-kala); the third is called sakala. It is associated with mala, māyā and karma. The first, namely the vijñāna-kala, may again be twofold, as associated with the impurities and as devoid of them. Those who are released from impurity are employed by God with various angelic functions, and they are called vidyeśvara and mantreśvara. Others, however, pass on to new cycles of life, being associated with a composite body of eight constituents which form the subtle body. These eight constituents are the five sensibles, manas, buddhi, and ahaṅkāra, and they all are called by the name of puryaṣṭaka, the body consisting of the eight constituents.

Those whose impurities (mala) get ripened may receive that power of God through proper initiation by which the impurity is removed, and they become one with God. The other beings, however, are bound by God to undergo the series of experiences at the end of which they may be emancipated.

The bonds or pāśa are of four kinds: first, the bond of mala and the karma. The bond of mala is beginningless, and it stands as a veil over our enlightenment and power of action. The karma also flows on, depending on the mala from beginningless time. The third is called māyēya, which means the subtle and gross bodies produced through māyā, which is the fourth. Aghora-śivācārya says that māyēya means the contingent bonds of passion, etc., which are produced in consequence of karma. Even those who have not the māyēya impurity at the time of dissolution (pralaya) remain by themselves but not liberated.

But what is mala? It is supposed to be one non-spiritual stuff, which behaves with manifold functions. It is for this reason that when the mala is removed in one person it may function in other persons. This mala being like the veiling power of God, it continues to operate on the other persons, though it may be removed in the case of some other person. As the husk covers the seed, so the mala covers the natural enlightenment and action of the individual; and as the husk is burnt by fire or heat, so this mala also may be removed when the internal soul shines forth. This mala is responsible for our bodies. Just as the blackness of copper can be removed by mercury, so the blackness of the soul is also removed by the power of Śiva.

Karma is beginningless and is of the nature of merit and demerit (dharma and adharma). Śrīkumāra defines dharma and adharma as that which is the special cause of happiness or unhappiness, and he tries to refute other theories and views about dharma and adharma. Māyā is regarded as the substantive entity which is the cause of the world. We have seen before that bondage comes out of the products of māyā (māyēya (?)); so māyā is the original cause of bondage. It is not illusory, as the Vedāntists say, but it is the material cause of the world. We thus see that the power or energy of God behaving as mala, māyā, karma, and māyēya, forms the basic conception of bondage.

These are the first five pure categories arising out of Śiva. The category of Śiva is regarded as the bindu, and it is the original and primal cause of everything. It is as eternal as māyā. The other four categories spring from it, and for this reason it is regarded as mahā-māyā. These categories are the mythical superintending lords of different worlds called vidyeśvara, mantreśvara, etc. So, from bindu comes śakti, sadāśiva, Īśvara, and vidyeśvara. These categories are regarded as pure categories. Again, in order to supply experiences to individuals and their scope of action, five categories are produced, namely, time (kāla), destiny (niyati), action (kalā), knowledge (vidyā), and attachment (rāga). Again, from māyā comes the avyakta or the unmanifested, the guṇas, and then buddhi, and ahaṅkāra, manas, the five conative senses and the five cognitive senses, and the gross matter, which make up twenty-three categories from māyā.

We thus see that these are in the first instance the five categories of śiva, śakti, sadāśiva, īśvara, and vidyā. These are all of the nature of pure consciousness (cidrūpa), and being of such a nature, there can be no impurity in them.

We have next the seven categories which are both pure and impure (cidacid-rūpa), and these are

  1. māyā,
  2. kāla,
  3. niyati,
  4. kalā,
  5. vidyā,
  6. rāga and
  7. puruṣa.

Puruṣa, though of the nature of pure consciousness, may appear as impure on account of its impure association. Next to these categories we have twenty-four categories of avyakta-guṇa-tattva, buddhi, ahaṅkāra, manas, the five cognitive senses, the five conative senses, the five tanmātras, and five mahābhūtas. Altogether these are the thirty-six categories.

If we attend to this division of categories, we find that the so-called impure categories are mostly the categories of Sāṃkhya philosophy. But while in the Sāṃkhya, prakṛti is equated with the avyakta as the equilibrium of the three guṇas, here in the Śaiva philosophy the avyakta is the unmanifested which comes from māyā and produces the guṇas.

To recapitulate, we find that the system of thought presented in the Tattva-prakāśa, as based on the Śaivāgamas, is a curious confusion of certain myths, together with certain doctrines of Indian philosophy. One commentator, Śrīkumāra, has tried to read the monistic philosophy of Śaṅkara into it, whereas the other commentator, Aghora-śivācārya, has tried to read some sort of duality into the system, though that duality is hardly consistent. We know from Śaṅkara’s account of the philosophy of the Śaiva school that some Śaivas called Māheśvaras tried to establish in their works, the Siddhāntas, the view that God is only the instrumental cause (nimitta-kāraṇa :) of the world, but not the material cause (upādāna-kāraṇa). In Śaṅkara’s view God is both the material and the instrumental cause of the world and of all beings. Aghora-śivācārya’s pretext for writing the commentary was that it was interpreted by people having a monistic bias, and that it was his business to show that, in accordance with the Śaivāgamas, God can only be the instrumental cause, as we find in the case of the Naiyāyikas. He starts with the premise that God is the sum total of the power of consciousness and the power of energy, and he says that the māyā is the material cause of the world, from which are produced various other material products which are similar to the Sāmhkya categories. But he does not explain in what way God’s instrumentality affects the māyā in the production of various categories, pure and impure and pure-and-impure. He says that even the energy of māyā proceeds from God and appears in the māyā as if undivided from it. There is thus an original illusion through which the process of the māyā as bindu and nāda or the desire of God for creation and the creation takes place. But he does not any further explain the nature of the illusion and the cause or the manners in which the illusion has been generated. The original text of the Tattva-prakāśa is also quite unilluminating regarding this vital matter. Aghora-śivācārya often refers to the Mṛgendrāgama for his support, but the Mṛgendrāgama does not follow the Sāṃkhya course of evolution as does the Tattva-prakāśa. There we hear of atoms constructed and arranged by the will of God, which is more in line with the Nyāya point of view.

Dealing with the nature of the soul, it is said that the souls are aṇus in the sense that they have only a limited knowledge. The souls are essentially of the nature of Śiva or God, but yet they have an innate impurity which in all probability is due to the influx of māyā into them. Nothing is definitely said regarding the nature of this impurity and how the souls came by it. Śrīkumāra explains this impurity on the Vedāntic lines as being of the nature of avidyā, etc. But Aghora-śivācārya does not say anything on this point. It is said that when by the fruition of action the impurity will ripen, God in the form of preceptor would give proper initiation, so that the impurity may be burnt out, and the souls so cleansed or purified may attain the nature of Śiva. Before such attainment Śiva may appoint some souls, which had had their impurities cleansed, to certain mythical superintendence of the worlds as vidyeśvaras or mantreśvaras. At the time of the cycles of rebirth, the individual souls, which have to pass through it for the ripening of their actions, do so in subtle bodies called the puryaṣṭaka (consisting of the subtle matter, buddhi, ahaṅkāra, and manas).

Turning to the categories, we see that the so-called pāśa is also in reality a derivative of the energy of Śiva, and for this reason the pāśa may be a blinding force, and may also be withdrawn at the time of liberation. The category of Śiva or śiva-tattva, also called bindu, makes itself the material for the creation of the fivefold pure tattvas and the other impure categories up to gross matter, earth.

These fivefold pure categories are

  1. śiva-tattva,
  2. śakti-tattva,
  3. sadāśiva-tattva,
  4. īśvara-tattva, and
  5. vidyā-tattva.

The bodies of these pure categories are derived from the pure māyā, called the mahāmāyā.

Next to these we have the pure-and-impure categories of kāla, niyati, kalā, vidyā, and rāga, which are a sort of link between the souls and the world, so that the souls may know and work. Next from the māyā comes avyakta, the guṇa-tattva, and from the guṇa-tattva, the buddhi-tattva, from that, ahaṅkāra, from that manas, buddhi, the five conative and five cognitive senses, the five tanmātras and the five gross objects.

As we have hinted above, most of the Siddhānta schools of thought are committed to the view that the material cause is different from the instrumental cause. This material cause appears in diverse forms as māyā, prakṛti or the atoms and their products, and the instrumental cause is God, Śiva. But somehow or other most of these schools accept the view that Śiva, consisting of omniscience and omnipotence, is the source of all energy. If that were so, all the energy of the māyā and its products should belong to Śiva, and the acceptance of a material cause different from the instrumental becomes an unnecessary contradiction. Various Siddhānta schools have shifted their ground in various ways, as is evident from our study of the systems, in order to get rid of contradiction, but apparently without success. When the Naiyāyika says that the material cause, the relations, and the instrumental cause are different, and that God as the instrumental cause fashions this world, and is the moral governor of the world in accordance with karma, there is no contradiction. God Himself is like any other soul, only different from them in the fact that He eternally possesses omniscience and omnipotence, has no body and no organs. Everything is perceived by Him directly. Again, if one takes the yoga point of view, one finds that Īśvara is different from prakṛti or the material cause, and it is not His energy that permeates through prakṛti. He has an eternal will, so that the obstructions in the way of the developing of energy oi prakṛti in diverse channels, in accordance with karma, may be removed to justify the order of evolution and all the laws of nature as we find them. The Īśvara or God is like any other puruṣa, only it had never the afflictions with which the ordinary puruṣas are associated, and it has no karma and no past impressions of karma. Such a view also saves the system from contradiction, but it seems difficult to say anything which can justify the position of the Siddhānta schools wavering between theism and pantheism or monism. In the case of the Śaṅkara Vedānta, Brahman also is real and he alone is the material and instrumental cause. The world appearance is only an appearance, and it has no reality apart from it. It is a sort of illusion caused by māyā which again is neither existent nor non-existent as it falls within the definition of illusion. The different forms of Śaiva school have to be spun out for the purpose of avoiding this contradiction between religion and philosophy.

The category of Śiva, from which spring the five pure categories spoken of above (sadāśiva, etc.), is called also the bindu, the pure energy of knowledge and action beyond all change. It is supposed that this pure śiva or bindu or mahāmāyā is surcharged with various powers at the time of creation and it is in and through these powers that the māyā and its products are activated into the production of the universe which is the basis of the bondage of the souls. This movement of the diverse energies for the production of the universe is called anugraha or grace. By these energies both the souls and the inanimate objects are brought into proper relation and the work of creation goes on. So the creation is not directly due to Śiva but to His energy. The difficulty is further felt when it is said that these energies are not different from God. The will and effort of God are but the manifestations of His energy[12].

The different moments of the oscillation of God’s knowledge and action are represented as the different categories of sadāśiva, Īśvara, vidyā. But these moments are only intellectual descriptions and not temporary events occurring in time and space. In reality the category of Śiva is identical all through. The different moments are only imaginary. There is only the category of Śiva, bristling with diverse powers, from which diverse distinctions can be made for intellectual appraisal[13].

In the Sāṃkhya system it was supposed that the prakṛti, out of its own inherent teleology, moves forward in the evolutionary process for supplying to all souls the materials of their experiences, and later on liberates them. In the Siddhānta systems the same idea is expressed by the word anugraha or grace. Here energy is to co-operate with grace for the production of experience and for liberation. The fact that Śiva is regarded as an unmoved and immovable reality deprives the system of the charm of a personal God. The idea of anugraha or grace cannot be suitably applied to an impersonal entity.

God’s energies, which we call His will or effort, are the organs or means (kāraṇa), and the māyā is the material cause out of which the world is fashioned; but this māyā as such is so subtle that it cannot be perceived. It is the one common stuff for all. This māyā produces delusion in us and makes us identify ourselves with those which are different from us. This is the delusive function of māyā. The illusion is thus to be regarded as being of the anyathā-khyāti type, the illusion that one thinks one thing to be another, just as in Yoga. All the karmas are supposed to abide in the māyā in a subtle form and regulate the cycles of birth and rebirth for the individual souls. Māyā is thus the substantial entity of everything else that we may perceive.

We have already explained the central confusion as regards the relation of the changeable māyā and the unchanging God or Śiva. But after this the system takes an easy step towards theism, and explains the transformations of māyā by the will of God, through His energies for supplying the data of experience for all individual souls. Time is also a product of māyā. In and through time the other categories of niyati, etc., are produced. Niyati means the ordering of all things. It stands for what we should call the natural law, such as the existence of the oil in the seed, of the grain in the husk, and all other natural contingencies. We have translated the word niyati as ‘destiny’ in other places, for want of a single better word. Niyati comes from niyama or law that operates in time and place. The so-called kalā-tattva is that function of niyati and kāla by which the impurity of the individual souls becomes contracted within them so that they are free, to a very great extent, to act and to know. Kalā is thus that which manifests the agency (kartṛtva-vyañjikā). It is through kalā that experiences can be associated with individuals[14]. From the functioning of kalā knowledge proceeds, and through knowledge all experience of worldly objects becomes possible.

In the Sāṃkhya system the buddhi is supposed to be in contact with objects and assume their forms. Such buddhi forms are illuminated by the presiding puruṣa. The Siddhānta system as explained in Tattva-prakāśa differs from this view. It holds that the puruṣa, being inactive, cannot produce illumination. Whatever is perceived by the buddhi is grasped by the category of vidyā or knowledge, because the vidyā is different from puruṣa and is a product of māyā as such. It can serve as an intermediate link between the objects, the buddhi, and the self. Buddhi, being a product of māyā, cannot be self-illuminating, but the vidyā is produced as a separate category for the production of knowledge. This is a very curious theory, which differs from Sāṃkhya, but is philosophically ineffective as an epistemological explanation. Rāgā means attachment in general, which is the general cause of all individual efforts. It is not a quality of buddhi, but an entirely different category. Even when there are no sense objects to which one may be inclined there may be rāga which would lead a person towards liberation[15]. The totality of kāla, niyati, kalā, vidyā, and rāga as associated with the paśu renders him a puruṣa, for whom the material world is evolved as avyakta, guṇa, etc. Here also the difference from the Sāṃkhya system should be noted. In Sāṃkhya the state of equilibrium of the guṇas forms the avyakta, but here the guṇas are derived from the avyakta, which is a separate category.

The Śaiva system admits three pramāṇas: perception, inference, and testimony of scriptures. In perception it admits both the determinate (savikalpa) and the indeterminate (nirvikalpa), which have been explained in the first two volumes of this work. As regards inference, the Śaivas admit the inference of cause from effect and of effect from cause, and the third kind of inference of general agreement from presence and absence (sāmānyato dṛṣṭa).

The category of ahaṅkāra, which proceeds from buddhi, expresses itself in the feeling of life and self-consciousness. The ātman, the basic entity, is untouched by these feelings. The system believes in the tripartite partition of ahaṅkāra, the sāttvika, rājasa, and tāmasa, after the pattern of the Sāṃkhya, and then we have virtually the same sorts of categories as the Sāṃkhya, the details of which we need not repeat.

The relation between the māyā and the category of Śiva is called parigraha-śakti, by which the mechanism of the relation is understood as being such that, simply by the very presence of Śiva, various transformations take place in the māyā and lead it to evolve as the world, or to be destroyed in time and again to be created. The analogy is like that of the sun and the lotus flower. The lotus flower blooms of itself in the presence of the sun, while the sun remains entirely unchanged. In the same way, iron filings move in the presence of a magnet. This phenomenon has been variously interpreted in religious terms as the will of God, the grace of God, and the bondage exerted by Him on all living beings. It is in this sense again that the whole world may be regarded as the manifestation of God’s energy and will, and the theistic position confirmed. On the other hand, since Śiva is the only ultimate category without which nothing could happen, the system was interpreted on the lines of pure monism like that of Śaṅkara, wherein it appeared to be a mere appearance of multiplicity, whereas in reality Śiva alone existed. This led to the interpretation of the system of Śivādvaita that we find in the Sūta-saṃhitā, Yajña-vaibhava chapter.

The śakti of God is one, though it may appear as infinite and diverse in different contexts. It is this pure śakti which is identical with pure will and power. The changes that take place in the māyā are interpreted as the extension of God’s grace through creation for the benefit of the individual souls. God in the aspect of pure knowledge is called śiva and as action is called śakti. When the two are balanced, we have the category of sadā-śiva. When there is a predominance of action it is called maheśvara.

The theory of karma in this system is generally the same as in most other systems. It generally agrees with a large part of the Sāṃkhya doctrine, but the five śuddha-tattvas, such as sadā-śiva, etc., are not found elsewhere and are only of mythological interest.

The Śiva-jñāna-siddhiyar not only advocates the niyamas, such as good behaviour, courteous reception, amity, good sense, blameless austerity, charity, respect, reverence, truthfulness, chastity, self-control, wisdom, etc., but also lays great stress on the necessity of loving God and being devoted to Him.

Footnotes and references:


saṃskṛtaiḥ prākṛtair yaś cāśiṣyānurūpataḥ,
deia-bhāṣadyupāyaiś ca bodḥayet sa guruḥ smṛtaḥ.
(Mysore manuscript, no. 3726).


vivādādhyāsitaṃ viśvam viśva-vit-kartṛ-pūrvakam, kāryatvād āvayoḥ siddhaṃ kāryaṃ kumbhādikaṃ yathā, iti śrīman-mātaṅge’ pi, nimitta-kāraṇaṃ tu īśa iti. ayam ceśvara-vāḍo ’smābhiḥ mṛgendra-vṛtti-dīpikāyāṃ vistareṇāpi darśita iti.
      Aghora-śivācārya’s commentary on Tattva-prakāśa (Adyar manuscript).


Aghora-śivācārya quoting Mṛgendra in his commentary on Tattva-prakāśa says:

caitanyaṃ dṛk-kriyā-rūpam iti cid eva ghanaṃ deha-svarūpam yasya sa cidghanaḥ.

This cidghana is the attribute ascribed to Śiva in Tattva-prakāśa.


moho madaś ca rāgaś ca viṣādaḥ śoka eva ca, vaicittaṃ caiva harṣaś ca saptaite sahajā malāḥ.
      Aghora-śivācārya’s commentary (Adyar manuscript) on Tattva-prakāśa, kārikā I.


anugrahaś cātropalakṣaṇam.


Tattva-prakāśa, kārikā 7.


Ibid. Commentary on Tattva-prakāśa, kārikā 7.


kārya-bhede’pi mūyādivan nāsyāḥ pariṇāma iti darśayati tasya jaḍa-dharmatvāt. adyām pradhāna-bhūtāṃ samavetām anena parigraha-śaktisvarūpam bindu-māyātmakaṃ apy asya bāhya-śakti-dvayam asti.
      (Aghora-śivācārya’s commentary, Adyar manuscript).

Śrīkumāra, however, thinks that Śiva as associated with the māyā forms the instrumental and material cause of the world:

nimittopādāna-bhāvena avasthānād iti brūmah.

Such a view should make Śaivism identical with the Advaitism of Śaṅkara. Aghora-śivācārya wrote his commentary as a protest against this view, that it does not represent the view of the Śaivāgamas which regard God only as the instrumental cause.


Sūtasaṃhitā, Book iv, verse 28 et seq.


malaṃ karma ca māyā ca māyottham akhilaṃ jagat, tirodhānakārī śaktir artha-pañcakam ucyate.
      Śrīkumāra’s commentary, p. 32.


nanu katḥam ekaikasyā eva śiva-śakteḥ pati-padārtḥe ca pāśa-padārtḥe ca saṃgraha ucyate. satyam, paramārthataḥ pati-padārtha eva śakter antarbhāvaḥ. pāśatvaṃ tu tasyāṃ pāśa-dharmānuvartanena upacārāt. tad uktaṃ śrīman Mṛgendre—tāsāṃ māheśvarī śaktiḥ sarvānugrāhikā śivā, dharmānu vartanād eva pāśa ity upacaryata, iti.
      Aghora-śivācārya’s commentary (Adyar manuscript).


Thus Śrīkumāra says, quoting from the Mātaṅga-parameśvara (p. 79):

tad uktam mātaṅge:
patyuḥ śaktiḥ parā sūkṣmā jāgrato dyotana-kṣamā,
tayā prabhuḥ prabuddhātmā svatantraḥ sa sadāśivaḥ.


tattvam vastuta ekaṃ śiva-saṃjñaṃ citra-śakti-śata-khacitaṃ,
śakti-vyāpṛti-bḥedāt tasyaite kalpitā bḥedāḥ.
II. 13.


Thus Śrīkumāra quoting from Mātaṅga, says (p. 121):

yathāgni-tapta-mṛtpātraṃ jantuna’liṅgane kṣamaṃ, tathāṇum kalayā viḍḍhaṃ bhogaḥ śaknoti vāsituṃ, bhoga-pātrī kalā jñeya tadādharaś ca pudgalaḥ.


Thus Śrīkumāra says (p. 124):

asya viṣayāvabhāsena vinā puruṣa-pravṛtti-hetutvāḍ budḍhi-dharma-vailakṣanya-siddhiḥ, mumukṣor viṣaya-tṛṣṇasya tatsā-dhane viśayāvabhāsena vinā pravṛttir dṛṣṭā.

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