The Ultimate Self-Awareness
Tracing a Sense of Self in the Manifesting God
Keywords:Kālavadha Kāvya, Kṛṣṇalīlāśuka, divine life cycle, manifestation, self-awareness
Śiva’s sense of self is ever-evolving, ever-changing. His selfawareness is in constant motion, expanding and contracting in its many manifestations. The movement is circular. It forms Śiva’s life cycle which is structured and bound to an internal dynamic based on a tensile balance between the reflexive and reflective modes of the god. The following article examines this dynamic, sketches the structure of the life cycle as it appears in the Kālavadha Kāvya of Kṛṣṇalīlāśuka, and aims to shed new light on the vibrant sense of Śiva’s self.
PlumX Metrics of this article
Kālan Ilātta Kālam of Kuñjan Nambiar. In: Rasikarañjinī, book 3. 1904. Thamburan R. A. (ed.). Cochin.
KVK = Kālavadha Kāvya of Kṛṣṇalīlaśuka. 1962. Pillai K. (ed.). Trivandrum: University of Kerala.
Manuscript 17598, Kerala Oriental Manuscripts Library.
Mārkaṇḍeya Caritam (Thiruvātira pāṭṭu). Unpublished. Mss. 21705-c. in the Kerala Oriental Manuscripts Library. Trivandrum: University of Kerala.
Mārkaṇḍeyapūraṇam (Kiḷḷḷipāṭṭu) by unknown author. 1982. Nair K. A. (ed.) Trivandrum: Oriental Research Institute and Mss. Library, University of Kerala.
Śivavilāsa Campū of Virūpākṣa Kavi. 1991. Thirumathi S. R. (ed.). Thanjavur: Sarasvati Mahal Library.
Davis, R. H. 1991. Ritual in an Oscillating Universe: Worshiping Śiva in Medieval India. Princeton–New Jersey: Princeton University Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/9781400862382
Handelman, D. 2014. One God, Two Goddesses: Three Studies of South Indian Cosmology. Leiden–Boston: Brill. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004257399
O’Flaherty Doniger, W. 1980. Women, Androgynes, and Other Mythical Beasts. Chicago–London: The University of Chicago.
Padoux, A. 1990. Vāc: The Concept of the Word in Selected Hindu Tantras. Albany: University of New York Press.
Reich, J. D. 2021. To Savor the Meaning: The Theology of Literary Emotions in Medieval Kashmir. New York: Oxford University Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/oso/9780197544839.001.0001
Salay, H. 2016. Śiva in the Kūṭiyaṭṭam Theatrical Tradition According to the Mantrāṅkam and the Mattavilāsam (unpublished M. A. Dissertation). Jerusalem: The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
—. 2019. Reflection and Aruḷ: Creating Śiva on the Kūṭiyaṭṭam Stage. In: H. Oberlin and D. D. Shulman (eds). Two Masterpieces of Kūṭiyāṭṭam: Mantrāṅkam and Aṅgulīyāṅkam. New Delhi: Oxford University Press: 115–129.
—. The Death of Death and the Birth of a God: Kṛṣṇalīlaśuka’s Kālavadhakāvya as a Compendium of Medieval South India Thought. Ph.D. dissertation, Hebrew University, to be submitted in 2022.
Shulman, D. 1983. Notes on the Kalāntaka Myth at Tirukkaḍavur. In: K. V. Raman et al. (eds). Śrīnidhiḥ: Perspectives in Indian Archaeology, Art and Culture. Madras: New Era Publications: 267–274.
—. 2021. The Rite of Seeing: Studies in Kūṭiyāṭṭam. Delhi: Primus Publications.
Unni, N. P. 2006. Tantra Literature of Kerala. Delhi: New Bharatiya Book Corporation.
Wilson, F. 1975. The Love of Krishna: The Kṛṣṇ akarṇā mṛta of Līlāś uka Bilvamaṅgala. Pennsylvania: University of Pennsylvania Press.
How to Cite
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
HORIZON EUROPE European Research Council
Grant numbers No. 786083–NEEM