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Light on Abhinavagupta's Contribution to the Advaita Shaiva Spiritual Philosophy of Kashmir

  • By Dr Debabrata Sen Sharma
  • March 2016

Editor: Prabuddha Bharata, the magazine from the Ramakrishna Mission came out with a special issue in January 2016 titled ‘Reflections on Tantra’. Esamskriti is uploading select articles from this masterpiece issue. If you like to download the entire issue (one with brown cover) Click here

Excerpts from article – “Out of the eight schools of Shaiva spiritual philosophy that had their origin and development in different parts of India in different periods of time, the Advaita Shaiva spiritual philosophy of Kashmir is the most prominent one on account of richness in terms of literary output and the depth in its spiritual thought projections. Eight schools of Shaiva spiritual thought arranged in chronological order are: the Pashupata Shaiva school, the Lakulisha Pashupata school, the Nandikeshvara Shaiva school, the Shaiva Siddhanta, the Virashaiva school, the Raseshvara Shaiva school the Advaita Shaiva school of Kashmir, and the Shaiva school founded and propagated by Shrikantha in Kashmir. The first three schools of Shaivism mentioned above originated in the beginning as religious cults in chronological order in the pre-Christian era in the north-western and south-western parts of India. Very limited literature that was created later is available pertaining to them, shedding light on their spiritual thought projections.”

Author is Professor of Indology, at the Ramakrishna Mission Institute of Culture, Kolkata.

To read article in PDF format.

This article was first published in the Prabuddha Bharata, monthly journal of The Ramakrishna Order started by Swami Vivekananda in 1896. This article is courtesy and copyright Prabuddha Bharata (www.advaitaashrama.org). I have been reading the Prabuddha Bharata for years and found it enlightening. You can subscribe online at www.advaitaashrama.org. Cost is Rs 100/ for one year, Rs 280/ for three years, Rs 1,200/ for twenty years and Rs 2,000 for twenty five years.

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