Dr Shivananda Jamadar, chief coordinator of Lingayat Independent Religion Horata Samiti, has challenged Pejawara mutt seer Vishvesha Teertha Swamy’s statement that Lingayats who worship Shiva are Hindus to accept an open debate with RSS leaders at Vidhana Soudha banquest Hall, reported Kannada Prabha.

Speaking at a press meet at a hotel, he said, Pejawara Swamy has been consistently stating that worshipers of Shiva are Hindus.  However, the concept of Shiva in Lingayat is totally different from that of Hindus. Claiming he can prove it with illustrations, he invited Swamiji for a debate and to bring with him eminent personalities like novelist S L Bhyrappa, RSS chief Mohan Bhagavath, leaders S Ramanna, Kalladka Prabhakar, MP Pratap Simha or any other person.

Unlike Hindus who worship the ‘static’ Linga, the Lingayats worship ‘Ishtalinga’. Pejawara Swamy knows it. Yet he is questioning Lingayat religion. When Sikh religion in 1963, Buddhist in 1993 and Jains in 2014 were accorded the status of minority religions neither the Sangh Parivar nor the BJP opposed.  But when Linagyats started demanding independent religion status why are they opposing he questioned.  From 12th century Lingayats are not a part of Hindu religion. They have been living independent.  But their patriotism was never questioned. From Vijayanagar Empire to Shivaji Maharaj to Keladi dynasty they have proved unquestioning patriotism, he said.

Linagayats worship the formless, invisible Shiva who they wear as Ishtalinga on the body. But the Shiva mentioned in Agamas and who is worshipped at temples is static and Lingayats do not worship static Shiva. According to Hindus Brahma, Vishnu and Eshwara are the Trimurthis.

For Lingayats Shiva is the sole god who creates and destroys. Lingapurana, Shivapurana, Vaupurana and Skanda purana mentions Shiva of the Trimurthi but it is only purana ie legend.  Sharanas do not approve of the Puranas. The 3 Vedas of Hindus Rug, Sama and Atharavana Shiva is not mentioned. They refer to Rudra and to equate Rudra with Shiva is only an imagination. The Shiva mentioned in Yajurveda is the static Shiva accepted by the Hindus. Lingayats do not approve of Vedas.

The Shiva mentioned in Agamas is the Agamic Shiva. Since Lingayats do not believe in Agamas Basavanan said “cut the noses of Agamas’.  Shiva does not reside in Kailasa. Lingayats do not believe in reincarnation and the concept of heaven and hell. After death the Lingayats become one with Linga and not Kailasavasi.  They also do not believe in Shiva Tandava, Daksha Yajna, Yagjna, Homa, muhurth and untouchability and such other Hindu beliefs, he said.

He also expressed that the reason for the killings of Gauri Lankesh, Dr M M Kalaburgi and Linganan Satyampete was for the reason of supporting Lingayat independent religion. Security has been provided to him by the State Government but he did not ask for it he said.