The ‘near enemy’ series returns with another thought-provoking post!
Chapter Three of Abhinavagupta’s masterpiece, The Essence of Tantra, presents extremely subtle and potentially mindblowing pointers towards the true nature of reality.
The first of 12 posts translation Tantrāloka chapter 29, which details not only the kula-yāga or sexual ritual, but its preliminary meditations, the nonsexual variant forms of the practice, and the important topics of how to perform a Kaula initiation and the ways in which the Guru can pierce the cakras of the disciple and activate his or her energy-body.
Chapter Two of Abhinavagupta’s Tantrasaara teaches the (rare) possibility of spontaneous realization of the Truth without the need for any spiritual practice or method. This chapter contains one of Abhinava’s most powerful and direct pointing-out instructions! He puts the realization of ultimate Truth into the first person for you to savor.
In this section of the text, Abhinava discusses the nature of Awareness as the ground of all being. He breaks down sentience & insentience, gradations of awareness, individuated awareness vs. overarching Awareness, what full realization entails, and refutes objective materialism, all in the course of just five Sanskrit verses!
Tantrik philosophy in a nutshell! ~ Chapter One of Abhinavagupta’s “The Essence of the Tantras" in a fresh, readable translation.
Continuing my series of posts translating Abhinavagupta’s Tantrāloka, this section gives us a stunningly different way of reading the Bhagavad Gītā, and a different way of understanding religion itself.
My first post translating ‘The Essence of the Tantras’ by Abhinavagupta, which I’ve been working on for sixteen years.
This is a partial and provisional translation of 22 verses of the text, which has 52 verses in total. Complete translation and commentary forthcoming.
The latest in the ‘Near Enemies’ series, this post explores what ‘being in the present moment’ really means, and how it’s misunderstood, presenting three specific modes of being present that together encapsulate the whole spiritual path.
My translation of Light on Tantra chapter one continues after a two-year hiatus! This section is about magical ritual, among other things . . .
Many who believe that Tantra is mainly about sex found justification for their belief in the publication of a book called Kiss of the Yogini: "Tantric Sex" in its South Asian Contexts. This short post, drawn from my PhD dissertation, seeks to show how deeply problematic that book is, and offers a three-point definition of what distinguishes Tantra from other forms of Asian spirituality.
This post introduces an unpublished text of the Mahārtha lineage, 'The Blossoming of your Awareness' aka 'A Bouquet of methods to manifest your Awakening', by the siddha master Vīranātha.
Why is 'speaking your truth' a Near Enemy on the spiritual path? How can it cause more harm than good? And how can we actually know what is 'true'?
How can wanting to grow and become a better person be a problem on the spiritual path? This post discusses the disguised self-hatred implicit in the self-improvement project, and provides you with food for thought that could be a game-changer for you.
Perhaps the most insidious of all the 'near enemies', this post explains why 'You create your own reality' can be such a damaging concept ~ and shares the liberating truth that lies beneath it, according to nondual Tantrik philosophy.
How can trying to love yourself actually lead you into more suffering? And what kind of self-love is liberating?
Is there such a thing as negative energy? If so, what is it and how to we deal with it? If not, why does it seem like there is? ~ This post contains crucial Tantrik teachings on the nitty-gritty of the spiritual life.
Why is "listen to your heart" a Near Enemy to the truth? Read this timely and nuanced piece to find out.
Continuing the Near Enemies to the Truth series, this post explains why 'everything happens for the best' is a near enemy, what the deeper teaching behind it is, and why it matters.
Kicking off the Near Enemies to the Truth series, this post explains why 'everything happens for a reason' is a near enemy, what the deeper teaching behind it is, and why it matters.
Bonus: explanation of the role of facts, truth, and inquiry in the spiritual life.
This article explains the antecedents of Shaiva Tantrik philosophy, and its relation to other schools of thought.
"The joy of awareness is discovered through the expansion of the Center." Discover what this powerful and intriguing sūtra means in this new post on one of The Recognition Sūtras.
This extraordinary sutra teaches the goal of Tantrik Yoga—and of every nondual path—here called jīvanmukti or 'embodied liberation', and offers a beautiful definition of that goal: "jīvanmukti is defined as the natural freedom that arises for one who has recognized her own essence-nature when the entire mass of bondage melts away yet she continues to care for the prāṇas of the body."
This post features one of the most powerful teachings in The Recognition Sutras—on how to access the innate power of Awareness.
Awareness, like a fire, ‘devours’ all things; that is to say, it is that inner space in which all experienced things converge, and in which all experiences are dissolved and ultimately resolved. Since all beings exhibit that capacity at least partially, we know that all beings are forms of that same divine Consciousness which has the capacity to 'devour' all things.
Chapter Thirteen of the Recognition Sutras is the pivot point of the text; what came before describes the process by which transindividual Awareness (aka Divine Consciousness) contracts into the form of a deluded and suffering human being, while what comes after describes the process by which such a being realizes his or her nature as that unbounded Consciousness.
This second reading of Sūtra Eight explores how the nature of awareness can be realized by careful reflection on the process of cognition—specifically, how thoughts, feelings, and perceptions arise and dissolve within awareness. Such profound self-reflection leads one beyond philosophy to a direct contemplation of the nature of fundamental Awareness itself. This contemplative process, if properly directed, results in awakening to your true nature.
Chapter Twelve of The Recognition Sutras reveals how the state of bondage that most people live in is nothing other than the state of being deluded by and about the powers and potencies of one's very own consciousness. Learn how this delusion manifests as inhibition, and how the key to freedom lies in unraveling the misunderstandings you have about yourself.
A wake-up call: what can we really know is true?
- 'Tantric sex'
- Bhagavad Gītā
- divine nature
- divine will
- essence nature
- Guru Pūrnimā
- History of tantra
- Light on Tantra
- Near enemies to the truth
- Oṃ namaḥ shivāya
- Spiritual philosophy
- tantra illuminated
- the recognition sutras
- tibetan buddhism
- ultimate truth
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Parte 1 de una entrevista con Christopher (Hareesh) Wallis.
El ‘Yoga de Deidades’ es uno de los aspectos menos comprendidos del Yoga Tántriko. El término se refiere a la práctica Tántrika por excelencia, que es la de invocar aspectos de la Única Consciencia divina e identificarse con ellos.
¿Cuál es la naturaleza de dios? Este pasaje está conformado por los primeros 10 versos de una discusión de 34 versos en torno a la Naturaleza de Dios.
La cultura popular occidental tiende a establecer dos centros primarios de nuestro ser además del cuerpo: la mente (punto focal de los pensamientos) y corazón (punto focal de los sentimientos). Esto se contrapone por completo al modelo indio, donde ‘mente’ y ‘corazón’ se traducen con la misma palabra en sánscrito (chitta)
todo lo que existe es un campo de energía, infinito y autoconsciente, que aquí llamamos Luz de la Consciencia. Todo lo que se manifiesta no es más que la Luz manifestándose en esa forma
Hoy en día, “Tantra” es una palabra que se ha puesto de moda en el mundo occidental moderno. ¿A qué nos referimos cuando decimos el término “Tantra clásico”?
En esta publicación continúo con la traducción del primer capítulo de “Luz sobre los Tantras”: Sobre el Conocimiento y la Ignorancia, las Ataduras y la Liberación (versos 22-51).