The power of souls is beyond any artifice. We are made from and by it, and we rise or fall in part by that power in others.
Shiva is a very mysterious deity like many if not all of the Hindu deities. Shiva seems to behave more on the cosmic level in a universal context than anything else. We often don’t get a chance to see all the politicking, so don’t as citizens really know how competent he might be.
“Cosmic” as differing from “mundane” or earthly level? Yes, though in Hindu cosmology the cosmic structure is more cohesive than it is in other views. They don’t see there being any virtue in the notion of a split between heaven and earth, so to speak.
The behavior of the gods can be seen echoing on all levels. We can even see it in human interaction. The dance of Shiva contributes to human social order, and in a way because of that fate, on the ultimate outcome of human experience. Normally in human behavior, out of control behavior does what to human relationships?
Destroys them. But it’s out of madness or unintended consequence that much of the most world changing insight arises, and for the life of us, can anyone keep up the out of control behavior indefinitely? Some of the biggest advances in human consciousness came not out of “divine” seeming influence but when we seemed under the sway of hell on earth. The Hindu name for the land of these out of control beings is Janastan, land of the Jinni, which is also where the Romans got the word genius. For women, the word would be Juno. There was extensive interaction between the European part of the Mediterranean and the Middle East even before the rise of Islam. I am specifically referring to Italy and Greece. The Romans were certainly not above adopting or adapting to how conquered people already seemed to govern themselves.
Well, to get back to Shiva. He does love to dance. What leads to the state we often refer to as the sixth degree of separation is the dance of Shiva. What seems normal to you will seem crazy or overwhelming if you move some degrees away from your current social circle.
I wonder why I always think of Shiva as female. Hindu deities are often somewhat androgynous to the point of even having opposite sex shadow manifestations. That and English tells us that any name ending in an ‘a’ is feminine.
If you saw Shiva depicted as Rudra, you wouldn’t see the femininity, many heads, many arms, three eyes, hands full of weapons. Shiva is among other things the embodiment of noise as Rudra is known as the roarer, a god of thunder. Perhaps why Shakespeare penned the lines and I will have to paraphrase, all the world is a stage and the people only players. He described human behavior as being full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.
We can hear Shiva’s roar on the internet. All the user commentary and general traffic, and mostly it gives people the impression that internet culture is for the most part a psychological trash heap. This would be the pile of bodies Shiva is known to dance on. The mind lacking inspiration to human thought was seen as being synonymous with being dead. Foolishness was the same as death to their view. This is why Shiva is seen as the destroyer, seen to set people apart from each other, even against each other because of the “order”, the cast system, things like that. Shiva’s music moves even the goddess Maya. She is his dance partner, and the illusion looks every bit as terrible as the thunder that is his voice.
Funny thing about this chaos, all this seeming storm Shiva causes, might even on the surface seem evil, no? Shiva is a stickler for form, rules. His music rules all. What happens when we dance for too long?
Exhaustion. Exactly, also known as ecstasy, being outside of oneself. Shiva is dancing not out of mockery of living beings, but out of love. As frightening as he might seem as the destroyer, with his girdle and necklace of skulls, it’s this same ferocity that is necessary for peace to be possible. Ever notice your personal demons, your negative traits, seem to be sort of one trick ponies as they say? This constraint is the gift of Shiva. If those passions didn’t lead to exhaustion, we could never know bliss or peace or love. So Shiva is the beneficent one. Funny thing, we choose our role in Shiva’s dance. As long as we fail to listen to the music, then we need that social order we project onto the world. We won’t be able to get around it.
Listening to Shiva’s music is possible through meditation. Sitting in meditation is sitting out on the dance. Shiva smiles when you choose to do this, and for the one who truly understands the music, Shiva ceases to be a storm god and instead manifests as the light and calm after the storm. Release.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.