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Those who are acquainted with Shakta Tantras and Agamas will find that the common feature in all these scriptures is that they are mostly spoken by Lord Shiva upon requests made by His consort or Devi or Adi Shakti or Para Shakti.

Its always Devi asking questions and Shiva answering them. Few Tantras are however exceptions to this rule. Some Tantras are spoken by Devi to Shiva. Examples of such texts are the Rudra Yamala Tantram, Kulachudamani Tantram etc.

Now, i have heard from my Guruji that there is a symbolism and deeper meaning behind this pattern. And it has something to do with the Guru Tattva & Sishya Tattva. And as we can see, even the Guru Gita from Skanda Purana follows the same pattern.

What are the symbolisms behind Lord Shiva speaking tantras and agamas to Devi?

NOTE- I prefer answers that are based on scriptures.

  • Lord Shiva is masculine here, Devi is feminine. Surrender, devotion & Love is feminine aspect, we must have love & devotion to understand Shiva's esoteric words fully. i.e cultivate feminine aspects to understand Adi-Purusha! – Mr. Sigma. May 7 '17 at 9:18
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Osho says on this in his commentary on the Vijnānabhairav tantra. -

This is a different type of language. You must know something about it before we enter into it. All the tantra treatises are dialogues between Shiva and Devi. Devi questions and Shiva answers. All the tantra treatises start that way. Why? Why this method? It is very significant. It is not a dialogue between a teacher and a disciple, it is a dialogue between two lovers. And tantra signifies through it a very meaningful thing: that the deeper teachings cannot be given unless there is love between the two –the disciple and the master. The disciple and master must become deep lovers. Only then can the higher, the beyond, be expressed. So it is a language of love; the disciple must be in an attitude of love. But not only this, because friends can be lovers. Tantra says a disciple moves as receptivity, so the disciple must be in a feminine receptivity; only then is something possible. You need not be a woman to be a disciple, but you need to be in a feminine attitude of receptivity. When Devi asks, it means the feminine attitude asks. Why this emphasis on the feminine attitude? Man and woman are not only physically different, they are psychologically different. Sex is not only a difference in the body; it is a difference in psychologies also. A feminine mind means receptivity–total receptivity, surrender, love. A disciple needs a feminine psychology; otherwise he will not be able to learn. You can ask, but if you are not open then you cannot be answered. You can ask a question and still remain closed. Then the answer cannot penetrate you. Your doors are closed; you are dead. You are not open. A feminine receptivity means a womb-like receptivity in the inner depth, so that you can receive. And not only that –much more is implied. A woman is not only receiving something, the moment she receives it, it becomes a part of her body. A child is received. A woman conceives; the moment there is conception, the child has become part of the feminine body. It is not alien, it is not foreign. It has been absorbed. Now the child will live not as something added to the mother, but just as a part, just as the mother. And the child is not only received: the feminine body becomes creative; the child begins to grow. A disciple needs a womb-like receptivity. Whatsoever is received is not to be gathered as dead knowledge. It must grow in you; it must become blood and bones in you. It must become a part, now. It must grow! This growth will change you, will transform you –the receiver. That is why tantra uses this device. Every treatise starts with Devi asking a question and Shiva replying to it. Devi is Shiva's consort, his feminine part. So Devi is not just a consort, she is Shiva's other half. And unless a disciple becomes the other half of the master it is impossible to convey the higher teachings, the esoteric methods. When you become one then there is no doubt. When you are one with the master –so totally one, so deeply one –there is no argument, no logic, no reason. One simply absorbs; one becomes a womb. And then the teaching begins to grow in you and change you. That is why tantra is written in love language. Something must also be understood about love language. There are two types of language: logical language and love language. There are basic differences between the two. Logical language is aggressive, argumentative, violent. If I use logical language I become aggressive upon your mind. I try to convince you, to convert you, to make a puppet of you. My argument is ”right” and you are ”wrong.” Logical language is egocentric: ”I am right and you are wrong, so I must prove that I am right and you are wrong.” I am not concerned with you, I am concerned with my ego. My ego is always ”right.” Love language is totally different. I am not concerned with my ego; I am concerned with you. I am not concerned to prove something, to strengthen my ego. I am concerned to help you. It is a compassion to help you to grow, to help you to transform, to help you to be reborn. Secondly, logic will always be intellectual. Concepts and principles will be signicant, arguments will be signicant. With love language what is said is not so signicant; rather, it is the way it is said. The container, the word is not important; the content, the message is more important. It is a heart-to-heart talk, not a mind-to-mind discussion. It is not a debate, it is a communion. So this is rare: Devi is sitting in the lap of Shiva and asking, and Shiva answers. It is a love dialogue no conict, as if Shiva is speaking to himself. Why this emphasis on love –love language? Because if you are in love with your master, then the whole gestalt changes; it becomes different. Then you are not hearing his words. Then you are drinking him. Then words are irrelevant. Really, the silence between the words becomes more signicant. What he is saying may be meaningful or it may not be meaningful... but it is his eyes, his gestures, his compassion, his love. That is why tantra has a xed device, a structure. Every treatise starts with Devi asking and Shiva answering. No argument is going to be there, no wastage of words. There are very simple statements of fact, telegraphic messages with no view to convince, but just to relate. If you encounter Shiva with a question with a closed mind, he will not answer you in this way. First your closedness has to be broken. Then he will have to be aggressive. Then your prejudices, then your preconceptions have to be destroyed. Unless you are cleared completely of your past, nothing can be given to you. But this is not so with his consort Devi; with Devi there is no past. Remember, when you are deeply in love your mind ceases to be. There is no past; only the present moment becomes everything. When you are in love the present is the only time, the now is all –no past, no future. So Devi is just open. There is no defense –nothing to be cleared, nothing to be destroyed. The ground is ready, only a seed has to be dropped. The ground is not only ready, but welcoming, receptive, asking to be impregnated.

  • You should also mention the name of the book. – Rickross May 7 '17 at 11:44
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    Mentioned @Rickross – Mr. Sigma. May 7 '17 at 11:46
  • Osho is not our authority​. Vedas and Agamas are. – user9392 Jun 4 '17 at 14:52
  • @AnuragSingh Again stupid logic, Agamas don't have/write commentaries. – Mr. Sigma. Jun 4 '17 at 17:40
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    @AnuragSingh I have added an answer that is entirely based on Scriptures. You may want to have a look. – Rickross Jul 31 '17 at 6:42
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All Tantras and Agamas assume the form of a dialogue between Shiva and Parashakti and as far as the reasons are concerned i have till now found two of them.

And, both of them are from Scriptures.

In order to depict the importance of Guru

Guru Shishya Pade StitvA Swameva SadAshivah | Prasnottara ParairvAkaistantram SamavatArayat ||

......

SadAshiva himself simultaneously assumes the roles of a Guru (as Shiva as prakasha) and Shishya ( as Shiva's own vimarsha Shakti), and by initiating a question-answer session thus propounds all the Tantra Shastras.

A Swachhanda Tantram verse quoted by AchArya Bhaskara Raya while commenting on a verse in NityAshodashikArnava's 1st patala.

This verse's import is that, in order to show the world that all knowledge is essentially Gurumukhi, Lord SadAshiva propounds all Tantras in the form of a dialogue between he himself and Sri Devi.

To emphasize the fact, that all Shastras, Agamas are fruitful only when learned from one's Guru, all Agamas assume the form of a dialogue between Shiva and Shakti who assume the respective roles of a Guru and Shishya.

Another explanation is also found in Scriptures and which is as given below:

To reiterate the fact that all Scriptures are essentially Shiva-Shakti's creations

Shivena Paraya ShaktyA DvAbhyAm Kritsnam Samudhritam | VAchyavAchakabhAvena DvAbhyAm Brahma PrakAsitam ||

........

All Shastras are created by the duo- Shiva and ParAshakti. They together,by assuming the forms of an asker and an answerer, there by reveal the supreme (Brahman).

Agama SAra Tantram

And the fact that, its Shiva (who is of course never separated from Shakti) who propounds all Shastras, by assuming different forms and at different times, is mentioned in many Agamas (for example in MahAnirvana Tantram's 1st chapter or in KulArnava Tantram's 1st chapter).

So, this is the 2nd explanation as to why all Tantras are always in the form of a dialogue between Shiva and Parashakti.

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