Siva: Siva and Tantra


Siva and Tantra

Siva has been the object of worship by many schools of tantras, some of whom follow sexual cults and other different paths in search of self-realization.

The fact that a great mass of heterogeneous cults and practices came to be associated with Him, suggests that in His unlimited wisdom and boundless love as a World Teacher and Father of all, Lord Shiva gives immense freedom to His followers to chose whatever path they want to follow for their self-realization.

To the followers of Vira Saiva cult, He is Vira Bhadra, valor personified. In His terrific forms, He is worshipped as Bhairavamurthy, Pataleswar and so on. He has many temples built all over India and in many other places in the world. He has shrines in almost every village or city, on the banks of every river and even in remote hilly areas of India.

Followers of Saivism are familiar with three words pati, pasu and paasa. Pati is Siva himself, the lord and husband. Pasu is the deluded self that is caught in the cycle of birth and death. Pasa is the bond that binds the pasu to this world and it gains liberation through devotion and surrender to pati.

His names are endless. So does His popularity. Even as early as the 2nd Century A.D., His fame spread beyond the boundaries of the Indian Subcontinent and spread to Central Asia.

As the Hindu culture spread to far east, temples were built in His Honor in many places like Java, Champa ( Indo-China), Kambhoja ( present day Cambodia) and in the adjoining areas of the now south east Asian countries. Some of these temples were built there as early as 5th Century A.D.