Sadhguru on Akka Mahadevi: a Shiva devotee

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Shiva The Adiyogi / Storytelling


Sadhguru tells us the story of Akka Mahadevi, a woman saint, who defied a king, and walked naked out of her devotion for Shiva. Sadhguru also narrates a beautiful poem written by Akka Mahadevi.


Duration: 2 min


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2 min read

Sadhguru on Akka Mahadevi: a Shiva devotee

The following is an unedited transcript of Sadhguru's video. For better readability, breaks and highlights have been added by the editors.

This is Akka Mahadevi, another lady saint. She was married to a king. She, at the age of nine, she was initiated by some unknown guru.

This is the thing about Bhakti movement. It broke all shackles, all ideas of what divine should be and should not be. Some related to the divine as their child, some as father, some as husband, some as wife, some as lover – in so many ways. Some even called the divine as a servant. You could relate, whichever way you want it – no restrictions. Because it’s only – what is important is that you are able to relate. And without relating to something, your emotions will not rise. The whole thing is about to get a swell of your emotion to a certain pitch of sweetness and hold it there. If you stay in that pitch of sweetness, naturally life’s perception will get so sensitive and become open to the possibility of experiencing what is real.

So, some of the poetry is a method to work themselves up, some of the poetry is an expression of the realization.


When one heart touches and feels another,
won’t feeling weigh over all
Can it stand any decencies then?
Oh mother, you must be crazy,
I fell for my lord, white as Jasmine.
I have given in utterly.
Go, go, I will have nothing of your mother and daughter stuff.
You go now.


So, when this young woman leaves, walks out of her husband’s house – because he referred to her and said, “Everything that you are wearing, your jewels, this palace in which you are living, the clothes that you wear, is mine.” She said, “I don’t want to have anything of your’s,” and she shed everything and walked out naked.

Her mother going and pleading with her, “Come to your senses, come back to the norms of the society.” So, she is saying, “Oh mother, I will have nothing of this mother and daughter stuff. You go now, because I have been smitten by Shiva.”

Shiva The Adiyogi

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