2019 Annual Meeting, Nov 23-26

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2019 Regional Meetings

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Deadline: October 1, 2019

The Ubiquitous Siva: Somananda's Sivadrsti and His Tantric Interlocutors

Nemec, John










John Nemec offers a fascinating analysis of the beginnings of the nondual tantric philosophy of the phamed Pratyabhijna or “Recognition” School of Kashmir, the tradition most closely associated with Kashmiri Shaivism. Following his extended introduction he also provides, for the very first time, a critical edition and annotated translation of a large portion of the first Pratyabhijna text ever composed: the Sivadrsti or Somananda. Nemec introduces the text by arguing that the author presents a unique form of nondualism, a strict pantheism that declares all beings and entities found in the universe to be fully identical with the active and willful god Siva. This theological and philosophical view stands in contrast to the panentheism of both his disciple and commentator, Utpaladeva, and the very few other Saiva tantric commentaries that were extant in the author’s day. Nemec also argues that the text was written for the author’s fellow tantric initiates, not for a wider audience.

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