Shivlinga and Shaktipeeths – two different (but one) manifest of two different deities in Hindu Dharma, are being worshipped from the dawn of the dawn and we can only speculate about the beginning. Recently, in a book, Pratha Sharma has raised her points in support of the argument that in Indian culture, it was there since the beginning that every Shaktipeeth also had a Shivlinga in any of the three forms (that she explains in her book) but, unfortunately enough, we had been forced to forget such things because of the tyranny that we had to go through – the barbarians, Mughals and the British! Sounds interesting and intriguing? Let’s get a detailed insight of the book by Pratha Sharma, The Forgotten Shivlinga of The Sati Shaktipeeths.
The book is based on the ancient epics which describe the co-existence of Shivlinga and Sati Shaktipeeths. The author has also highlighted the sources at the end of the book so that readers can have a look if they want. Besides the arguments that Pratha makes in her book, chapter 4,6 and 7, there are many other things in The Forgotten Shivlinga of The Sati Shaktipeeths which will be interesting, useful and good to know for the readers who are interested in reading spiritual or religious books. She has written about the locations and importance of various Shakipeeths in India and some neighbouring countries; she has written about different kinds of Shivlingas; she has given a brief but very peculiar description of Bhairav, the frightening manifest of Shiva and many other things that you will find in the book.
Looking at her book, critically, brings out many thoughts for discussion. Pratha Sharma mentions her theory, believed and countersigned by many, that the native Indians were invaded and looted and so were the temples. The destruction compelled us to accept the way we could have our temples and after many and many generations, the idea of the ‘original’ was lost in the oblivion. It seems viable for a reader to believe and logical as well. She also cites the names of the Sati Shaktipeeths where Shivlinga is still very much present, to further reinforce her arguments.
The book is suitable for them who want to study and further discover things related to religious beliefs and practices. Moreover, those who are interested in re-reading the history of Indian invasions and the so-called ‘greatness’ of Mughals and other invaders, do need to read this book by Pratha to have an alternate view and extend the discussion to a further level.
I am leaving a link to the book on Amazon for those who want to read this book and know about the co-existence of Shiva and Sati in the Shaktipeeths. You can click the link to buy the book from Amazon.
review by Abhishek for Indian Book Lovers