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Shunya Purana

Shunya Purana is not part of the collection of Hindu Puranas. It is today associated with Shiva and narrates about origin of agriculture and other related topics. In the Shunya Purana, a heterogeneous Bengali text traditionally ascribed to Ramai Pandit from the 12th century CE, the deer (mrga) is referred to as the "guardian of the forest."

Shunya Purana is intricately linked with God’s (Shiva) involvement in agriculture and the mythical narrative of the original two ploughmen. While more commonly recognized as the Agama Purana, the Shunya Purana was purportedly attributed by the initial editor and comprises diverse sections authored between the 16th and 18th centuries, compiled towards the close of the 19th century. Alongside the Dharma-Puja-Vidhana, also credited to Ramai Pandit, it imparts guidance on the worship of Dharma Thakur (or Dharmaraj), a fertility deity revered by the Doms of Bengal. Additionally acknowledged as the spouse of various local goddesses (Shitala, Manasa, etc.), since the 18th century, he has been largely supplanted by the Bengali agricultural deity Shiva.

A particularly captivating segment delves into the "creation of agriculture," essentially constituting an interpolated Sivayana. This portion narrates the Lord's abandonment of begging, his sojourn stripped and partaking in hemp, prompted by his wife's comments. “When Maheshwara travelled naked from door-to-door begging for alms with the name of God on his lips, Bhagavati Adya advised him to take to cultivation – Grow in your fields all the varieties of crops and grow bananas also, so that we may get all the necessary things on the occasion of Dharma worship.”

The revival of the deer is achieved by the Lord's touch upon its skin. Subsequently, the Lord fashions the two primal cultivators (Mana and Pabana) along with the indispensable agricultural implements (plough, spade, husking pedal, etc.), proceeding to cultivate the soil. Following this, he engages in meditation but experiences a yearning for Durga. This desire gives rise to a diverse array of crops, elucidating the cyclical progression until the harvest. Intriguingly, the Shivayanas, Shunya Purana, and Dharma-Puja-Vidhana are commonly regarded as Tantric texts.