Who is Shiva?

Everyone asks me the above question, and all I can say is that Shiva is the God of Destruction in Hinduism. As a pious Hindu, I can say for a fact that Shiva is male. Well actually you could consider Him a female, in the respect that He is a God and therefore He can be female. In the above picture Shiva is depicted in the middle with His wife Parvati on the left and Thier son Ganesh on the right.

Since Shiva is the God of Destruction, many people ask me as to the nature of such God. In my opinion Shiva is a merciful God. He is considered the God of Destruction because when the world is supposed to be filled with evil and in utter chaos, He is come down to the earth and destroy it. In a way this could be considered the Hindu version of Judgement Day.