Eastern philosophy, especially Hinduism is a myriad cauldron of schools and thoughts and I get confused and confounded - mostly because it requires years of reading and understanding.
Purusha - represented in the male form represents "Pure Consciousness"
Prakriti - represented in the female form represents "The Primary Substance"
When you bring them together, a representation of pure consciousness within the original form is what we are in essence. The passive force (Purusha) and the active force (Prakriti) are intertwined, inseparable and represent the non-duality of the supreme being - both father and mother, both aloof and active, both fearsome and gentle, both destructive and constructive - thereby speaking to the unification of all that is opposite and contrasting to represent a whole.
Ardhanarishvara reconciles and harmonizes the two conflicting ways of life: the spiritual way of the ascetic as represented by Shiva, and the materialistic way of the householder as symbolized by Parvati.
It also represents the presence of both in each being. Every human within them contains Shiva and Parvati in varying degrees. There exists a spectrum between the binaries of males and females, and that spectrum is where we find balance in life.
Collaboration : Indrani Mitra imagined Parvati and Vishesh Chopra crafted Shiva