By Velcheru Narayana Rao, Gene H. Roghair
Here is the 1st translation into English of the Basava Purana, a desirable selection of stories that sums up and characterizes essentially the most vital and such a lot radical spiritual teams of South India. the guidelines of the Virasaivas, or militant Saivas, are represented in these stories by means of an exciting mixture of outrageous extra and standard conservatism. Written in Telugu within the 13th century, the Basava Purana is an anthology of legends of Virasaivas saints and a hagiography of Basavesvara, the twelfth-century Virasaiva chief. This translation makes available a very new point of view in this major non secular staff. even though Telugu is among the significant cultural traditions of India, with a classical literature achieving again to the 11th century, before there was no translation or exposition of any of the Telugu Virasaiva works in English. The advent orients the reader to the textual content and is helping in an realizing of the poet's standpoint. the writer of the Basava Purana, Palkuriki Somanatha, is respected as a saint via Virasaivas in Andhra and Karnataka. His books are considered as sacred texts, and he's additionally thought of to be an important poet in Telugu and Kannada.
Originally released in 1990.
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Additional info for Śiva’s warriors: The "Basava Purāṇa" of Pālkuriki Somanātha
Basava is the vehicle of Oiva, the bull, who assumed human form. Toward the end of the BP, we are reminded of the divine stature of Basava when he reenters the 6iva image in the temple of Kappadisangamesvara. The period between these two divine incidents—his descent into the world of human beings and his final merging with Siva—encompasses a number of events on the human level. Every one of the stories serves to privilege the visible, the here and now, rather than events of far away and long ago.
C. Narayana Rao, Prabhakara Sastri, Somasekhara Sarma, and Venkata Rao, all of whom are brahmins, have argued that Somanatha was a brahmin. They have insisted that the scholarship of vedic, puranic, and sastra texts Somanatha exhibited in his various works is conclusive proof of his brahminic background. 21 This argument, however, is not supported by any evidence. The Virasaiva jangamas, who were recruited from many different castes, competed with brahmin scholars for social and religious respectability.
20 He did, however, give the names of his human parents: \%nuramideva, his father, and Sriyadevi, his mother. " The names are Vaisnava names, derived from Visnu and £ri (Laksmi), which suggests that his parents did not belong to the Virasaiva cult. Vlrasaivas refuse even to utter the name of any deity other than Siva. This would indicate that Somanatha's Virasaivism was probably the result of his own conver sion. In any case, the names of his parents do not give any indication of their caste. C.
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