Author: Geoffrey Samuel
Publisher: Motilal Banarsidass
ISBN/UPC (if available): 812082752X
Tantric Revisionings is a collection of articles relating to Tibetan Budhdism and Indian Religion. Five of these appear here for the first time. The remainder have been published previously, though many of the publications are not easily accessible. The articles presented here are linked by a common approach to religion as something that can be understood in at least two ways. In the first perspective, religion is a central expression of human creativity, linked to the core of what we are as human beings.
In the second, it is a vital aspect of how we live together in society. Geoffrey Samuel adopts the historically and textually informed anthropological approach, seeking to locate and understand religion in its social and cultural context. The question of the relation between popular (folk, domestic, villages, shamanic) religion and elite (literary, textual, monastic) religion forms a recurring theme through these studies.
The Buddhist and Hindu traditions in their many manifestations are part of humanity’s common heritage. Articles in this book try to move towards a fuller and more inclusive understanding of these traditions and their social context.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
GEOFFREY SAMUEL is Associate Professor of Sociology and Anthropology at the University of Newcastle, NSW. His publications include Mind, Body and Culture and Civilized Shamans. He is also translator of Giuseppe Tucci's Religions of Tibet.
PREFACE AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
I. STARTING POINTS:
2. Tibet as a stateless society and some Islamic parallels.
3. The dissenting tradition of Indian Tantra and its partial hegemonisation in Tibet.
4. Tibetan Tantra as a form of Shamanism: some reflections on the Vajrayana and its Shamanic origins.
5. Buddhism and the state in eighth century Tibet.
6. Shamanism, Bon and Tibetan religion.
7. The Indus Valley civilisation and early Tibet.
8. Ge-sar of gLing: the origins and meanings of the East Tibetan Epic.
III. RELIGION IN CONTEMPORARY ASIA:
9. Tibet and the Southeast Asian highlands: rethinking the intellectual context of Tibetan studies.
10. The Vajrayana in the context of Himalayan Folk religion.
11. The effectiveness of Goddesses, or, how ritual works.
12. Women, Goddesses and auspiciousness in South Asia.
IV. BUDDHISM AND OTHER WESTERN RELIGIONS:
13. Tibetan Buddhism as a world religion: global networking and its consequences.
14. The Westernisation of Tibetan Buddhism.
15. The attractions of Tantra: two historical moments.