Kashmir Shaivism has been bestowed with “Trikha Philosophy” which is actualized as the theology of universal consciousness and has its essence shared with Chit, Brahman in Vedanta. Trikha means three which is the ultimate reality, the first is shiv, the second is shakti and the third is a mixture of the universe of Macrocosm. The first means the largest thing there is and the latter means the individualized soul.
The universe evolved out of ultimate consciousness. The world is a display of Shakti and consciousness reflected in unique forms reciprocally created by adopting “I” and “THIS”. Shakti is the energy source while Shiv is the absolute manifest. Both are his powers and are inseparable. In today's time, absolute consciousness is forgotten due to ignorance but the same can be gained through the right knowledge. This can further lead an individual to be liberated from worldly means.
The universe is a reproduction of Shakti, a divine macrocosm that is constantly evolving. While consciousness describes “Spanda” which is the vibration of universal consciousness for freedom and power. That's why Shiv and Shakti are believed to be transformations and natural processes of integration. Shivaratri symbolizes the marriage of the two highest cosmic vibrations. The word “ratri” infers “night” where an individual feels existence, and all senses, time, space, and objectivity become still. Thus, Shivratri is a symbol of the spiritual state of samadhi.
In Tantric text, Bhairav and Bhairavi were called through tantric worship which is enshrined in Atharvaveda. According to legends, the linga appeared and made Vatuka Bhairav and Rama Bhairav dazzle with a large fire. Exasperated and terrified, they began to sing hymns and went to Mahadeva who blessed them to be worshiped by humans. Thus, Bhairav is the ultimate manifestation of pure “I” consciousness. Cosmic balance is maintained by the creation of OPPOSITES in life, like, birth-death, male-female, positive-negative and so many others. The concept inlet cosmic harmony.
Shiv being in a state of ARDHNARISHWAR i.e., a blend of male and female energies and also of anger and compassion validates the theory. In the trinity of gods in Hinduism. Brahma is the deity of creation, Vishnu is the deity of maintenance, and Shiv is the deity of destruction and dissolution of the universe and infinite love and kindness. Shiv reminds us without this balance, life will be chaos. Like men will be incomplete without women. But birth and death indeed are one. Life is coming into form and death is becoming formless. That is why Shiv is formless, instead of placing his pictures in temples we have SHIVALING.
The idea of oneness can also be read in Brihadaranyaka Upanishad which says that - “the one who perceives life in different forms, is distanced from the inner reality of self”. In the concept of Ardhnarishwar, shakti is feminine and Shiv is masculine but both are inseparable. Every individual has these traits. Opposites give us a chance to do things right but for that, we have to drop our minds to see the opposites and to have a life with totality and unity. Leading to a stage of “the being of infinite love and kindness".
Ms. Swejal Sharma
Assistant Professor, Sociology
School of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
SAGE University Bhopal