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Pasyanti Trika Saivism of Kashmir: Themes and Practices

Bettina Sharada Baumer (Author)

The present volume contains 17 selected articles of Bettina Sharada Bäumer which are the outcome of her study and research in the field of non-dual Trika Śaivism of Kashmir over the last four decades. They provide insights into essential aspects and themes of the philosophy and spirituality of Trika Śaivism, as well as elements of the spiritual practice involved in this tradition. Her approach is based on the fundamental texts as well as on the living traditions.

The first section titled “Stotras – Hymns to the Absolute”, contains four articles which focus on the study and translation of some of the important hymns of the non-dual Śaiva traditions of Kashmir. The  articles include  an introduction to the philosophy of Kashmir Śaivism through the benedictory or mangala verses; a translation and study of the mystical hymn “Sāmbapañcāśikā”, in which Sun-worship is discussed in the light of the Śaiva philosophy of Consciousness; an article on the non-dual nature of praise and finally a translation  and commentary on three important hymns of Abhinavagupta, together with two stotra fragments.

The second section, “Non-Dual Tradition of Śaivism of Kashmir” contains 13 significant articles presenting themes and practices of the tradition. The articles are based on fundamental Tantric texts such as Vijñāna Bhairava Tantra, Svacchanda Tantra and Netra Tantra. The author discusses some of the important concepts of Kashmir Śaivism, such as  vāc,  līlā, time and timelessness, harmony and disharmony, mudrā, the space of breath, śūnya and creative contemplation in the Vijñāna Bhairava Tantra,  the approach of paramādvaita in the mystical hymns of Utpaladeva´s Śivastotrāvalī,  the intensity of emotions and how it is a path to liberation, the concept of sarvaṃ sarvātmakam, i.e. “everything is related to everything else” or “all is in all”. The last article in this section is dedicated to Swami Lakshman Joo, author’s spiritual preceptor.

Paśyantī offers scholars and students, philosophers and seekers a spiritual voyage into the very heart of Indian spirituality. This volume will be useful not only to students and scholars of Indology but also to lay readers.

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About the author

Bettina Sharada Baumer

Bettina Sharada Baumer, Indologist from Austria and Professor of Religious Studies (Visiting Professor at several universities), has lived and worked in Varanasi since 1967. She is the author and editor of a number of books and over 50 research articles. Her main fields of research are non-dualistic Kashmir Saivism, Indian aesthetics, temple architecture and religious traditions of Odisha, and comparative mysticism. She has been Coordinator of the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, Varanasi. She has translated important Sanskrit texts into German and English. Her important publication is Abhinavagupta's Hermeneutics of the Absolute, Anuttaraprakriya (2011). In 2015 she received the Padma Shri award from the Presient of India. She has been extensively giving seminars on texts of Kashmir Saivism in India and Europe over the last 20 years.

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Bibliographic information

Title Pasyanti Trika Saivism of Kashmir: Themes and Practices
Format Hardcover
Date published: 27.06.2023
Edition 1st ed.
Language: English
isbn 9788173056864
length xii+268p.,