Ishvara (Sanskrit: ईश्वर, ISO-15919: Īśvara) or Eshwara is a concept in Hinduism, with a wide range of meanings that depend on the era and the school of Hinduism

In ancient texts of Hindu philosophy, depending on the context, Ishvara can mean supreme Self, ruler, lord, king, queen or husband

In medieval era Hindu texts, depending on the school of Hinduism, Ishvara means God, Supreme Being, personal God, or special Self

Ishvara is primarily an epithet of Lord Shiva

In Shaivism and for most of the Hindus, Ishvara is synonymous with Shiva

For many Vaishnavites, it is also synonymous with Vishnu like Venkateswara

In traditional Bhakti movements, Ishvara is one or more deities of an individual’s preference (Iṣṭa-devatā) from Hinduism’s polytheistic canon of deities

In modern-day sectarian movements such as Arya Samaj and Brahmoism, Ishvara takes the form of a monotheistic God

In the Yoga school of Hinduism, it is any “personal deity” or “spiritual inspiration”