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From darkness, lead us to Light. From death, lead us to Immortality. Om—Peace, Peace, Peace.

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A recurring hymn in the ancient Upanishad scriptures. Brahman Divine Reality is the offering, the ritual, and the one who offers to the sacrificial fire, which is also Brahman. Seeing Brahman in every action, verily one realizes Brahman. In Hinduism, the Absolute God or Brahman , pure Spiritual Reality, is transpersonal, suprapersonal not "impersonal" , and yet manifests on the personal level with a wide array of archetypes for the sake of anyone identified as a person and needing Divine help.

Each has its female Divine power or consort--see below. Vaishnavas make Lord Vishnu absolute in the same way. The three horizontal stripes on his forehead are made of ash, symbolizing the final inert state of all phenomena, and Divine changelessness. His right hand, palm forward, is in the classic abhaya mudra or gesture mudra of fearlessness.

Note: many Shaiva yogis will adopt some of the same elements as shown here, e. Standing atop the "personification of ignorant illusion," Shiva's upper right hand holds the damaru hand-drum, his other right hand displays the abhaya mudra. One of his left hands holds a flame.


The scenario rests upon a lotus pedestal, symbolizing Divine purity even while a world of change, limitation and evil manifests. Indeed, the image suggests Shiva's six activities: shrshti creation, evolution ; sthiti preservation, support ; samhara destruction, mergence ; tirobhava concealment, illusion ; udbhava appearance and anugraha grace, release, liberation, attraction to the Divine. Both Ganesha and Skanda are beloved gods of war who vanquish the "demons" or ego-tendencies.

Krshna holds his famous murali flute, by which he makes such enchanting music as to awaken the soul from worldliness to Godliness. The flute also symbolizes the true devotee, who is so "empty" and "hollowed out" of egotism as to be a perfectly clear instrument for the Divine to manifest goodness and beauty within the world-dream. Veda s. The most important and oldest Veda is the Rg Veda c. Major Upanishads --these number 13 or 16, depending on the schema, in addition to over Minor Upanishad s; all these are now available on the Internet in English translations at www.

This group dates anywhere from the 5th century BCE to 1st century CE, with some passages being obvious additions made by later generations. Note: the four Veda s including the Upanishad sections are considered Shruti , "that which is heard," i. This is surely the most widely read text in the Hindu world, and the subject of many commentaries.

All the above works save for the Veda s are considered smrti , "recollected scripture," derived from sruti "revealed scripture," or sometimes even regarded on the same level as sruti.

Kashmir Saivism

Below the earth-plane are various hells and nether regions; a total of 14 loka s are posited in all. Note: the guna s may characterize one's state of mind or body, the kind of food one eats, the kind of company one keeps, the kind of music one listens to, etc. In the Tantra traditions of Hinduism, after preliminary purification, etc. By early medieval India, however, a movement stemming from Tantra influence had swept through various regions of the subcontinent to honor the Supreme Goddess as Source of all Gods and gods.

Her husband Shiva rests in the background. Bibliographic References The following books, many now available in more recent editions or reprints, are not grouped alphabetically but rather are grouped roughly by topic. Note that this bibliography was first compiled in the early s and updated in the mids; I have made only a dozen or so updates to this list since then. Ainslie T.

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Embree Ed. Press, House, Press, first publ. Dasgupta, History of Indian Philosophy , 5 vols. Karl Potter Ed. Press of Hawaii, Thesis, U. Robert E. John White Ed. Sarvapelli Radhakrishnan Ed. Swami Nikhilananda Ed. George Thibaut Tr. Alladi Mahadeva Sastry Tr.

Krishna Warrier, et al. The Mahabharata the definitive scholarly version is by J. Van Buitenen [Tr. Rajagopalachari, et al.

The Krama Tantricism of Kashmir.Volume-1

The Ramayana the definitive scholarly version is the translation project overseen by Robert Goldman [Tr. Press, onward. See also Hari Prasad Shastri [Tr. Taimni Tr.

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Rammurti S. Mishra Tr. Georg Feuerstein Tr. Swami Satchidananda Tr.

Kashmir Shaivism

Swami Prabhavananda Tr. Cohen Ed. India: Sri Ramanashram, 2nd ed. Asia Books, Swami Venkatesananda Ed.

Swami Sri Ramanananda Saraswathi Tr. India: Sri Ramanashram, 3rd ed. Radhakamal Mukerjee Tr. Swami Nityaswarupananda Tr. Swami Chetanananda Tr.

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Ramamoorthy Tr. Krishnamoorthi Aiyer Ed. India: Sri Ramanashramam, India: Sri Ramanasramam, 3rd ed. Arthur Avalon Ed. Hans-Ulrich Reiker, Tr. Other works ascribed to Sankara, such as the Crest-Jewel of Discrimination [Vivekachudamani] , are most likely not by Sankara. Dharmaraja, Vedanta-paribhasa Swami Madhavananda, Tr. Sadananda, Yogindra, Vedantasara: The essence of Vedanta. Swami Nikhilananda, Tr. Srinivasa Ayyangar, Ed. Mahadevan, Tr. Part One , Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, Volumes , Wai Volume 7, PM47 S.

PM48 Govardhan P. PM49 P. PM50 Esther A. PM51 K. Also Darshana 14, , PM52 T. Thesis, University of Calcutta Torino PM62 R. PM64 S. PM65 K. PM66 G. Devasthali, "Prof.