Shiv Shivaa - the perfect Lovers


People say Krushna is the God of love, but the God who loved more intensely is perhaps Shiv.  The love of Shiv and Shivaa is more intense and abiding than any love of any other God. 


Prakruti was initially raised as Sati, the daughter of Daksha.  Marrying Shiv, Sati was very contented in her beloved’s non-conventional methods of living and thinking.  However, Daksha was never happy with Shiv and blamed his father for this mismatch.  When Daksha was given the post of “Prajapati”, he held a yagna and insulted Shiv by not inviting him or setting aside any oblations for him. 

Sati had came to the yagna to make peace between her father and husband.  But, seeing the deliberate and calculated insult her father had planned, Sati as Shivaa, the wife of Shiv, was distraught and angry at the same time.  She resolved to destroy her body that was associated as “daughter of Daksha” and burnt herself to death.

Highly distraught by the death of his beloved wife Shivaa, Shiv took her shava and walked all over India.  Nothing and no one could persuade Shiv to part with the burnt corpse (shava) of Shivaa.  Vishnu had to cut up the shava and disperse it all over India for Shiv to get over his grief.  Places where her body parts fell became places of Shakti worship and are called Shakti peethas.

Reborn as Parvati, the Adi-Prakruti did severe penance to regain the love of her beloved Shiv.  Even when Shiv himself came to her in disguise and narrated all the bad qualities of himself to her, Parvati did not change her mind and was thoroughly resolved to marrying Shiv.  Please with her ardent love, Shiv married Parvati, his eternal love.

Whenever devas have requested the Adi-Prakruti to take form and assist them with the mundane work of bringing balance to the world, Shivaa has always insisted on having Shiv marry her in that form.  They love each other so intensely, they just can not stand to be parted from each other for a single moment !!

Thus when Devi came as Meenakshi, Shiv came as Sundaram to marry her and live as her prince consort at Madurai.

Even the angry Maha Kali only stopped her universal slaughter when her feet accidently touched Shiv’s body.  Even in that gory field of slaughter, amongst all the dead bodies, her feet recognised the electrifying touch of her eternal lover.

On one occasion, when Shiv failed to come as promised, Devi as Kanya Kumari resolved to remain a virgin and performed severe taaps at the Cape of Komarin in South India.


Shiv Shivaa’s love is as strange, impossible and improbable as any.  They are polar opposites of each other.  And yet, like polar opposites, there is an intense attraction for each other that transcends all space and time. 



Shiv is as fair has the camphor. 

Shivaa is variously fair (Parvati), dark (Maha Kali), golden (Devi) etc

Shiv is (frustratingly) calm and patient.  He loves to sit in meditation and essentially “do nothing” if he can help it.

Shivaa is constantly active and busy.  Shivaa can not sit patiently and agitates to get things done “instantly”.

Shiv rides a bull.

Shivaa rides lions, tigers and various other predatory animals.

Shiv is unkempt and cares not for the strictures of society.

Shivaa is a highly sophisticated beauty who loves to socialise and nurture everyone as the “great mother” of the universe.

Shiv is variously naked, smeared in ashes of the dead, wears raw hides of monsters he has killed.  Cobras writher all over Shiv.

Shivaa is clothed in fine clothes and jewels as befitting the Adi-Prakruti of the universe.

Ghosts, ghouls, monsters and sages with matted locks surround Shiv.

Shivaa is surrounded by beautiful nymphs and her handsome sons, Kartik and Ganesh.

Shiv is comfortable living in the charnel ground, surrounded by burning corpses.

Shivaa prefers the snow bound peaks of mount Kailash.

Shiv is the primordial Purusha (male)

Shivaa is the primordial Prakruti (female)



Yet, despite all these differences, the two lovers are so intertwined, they are the first couple to be worshiped as Ardha-Nari-Eshwara – ie equally male and female.  This is a full 50 – 50 partnership.  Absolute and equal division of everything.  Neither claiming to be superior or inferior to the other.  This absolute equality of genders was, and is, totally unique in annals of ancient scriptures.   

Long may the love of Shiv Shivaa continue to inspire us.


© Bhagwat Shah   
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