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Articles: Tantric Hieroglyphics by Dr S.Srikanta Sastri

Published in Quarterly Journal of the Mythic Society, QJMS, Vol LI, No.1, April 1960

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Dr S.Srikanta Sastri

Sri Yantra

Tantric Mandala

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TANTRIC HIEROGLYPHICS

Historical Review

The Original Home of the Tantras

 

The Proto-Indic religion of India as revealed by archaeological discoveries in the Indus Valley has been shown to have been of the Atharvan phase of the Vedic Religion. The Atharva Veda being an integral part of vedic culture forms the basis of all the tantras, especially of those connected with the worship of the Mother Goddess. The Sammohana tantra asserts that without the worship of Kali or Tara there can be no practical application of Atharvan charms and spells.

"Vina Kalim vina Tararm na’ tharvana vidhih kvacit”

 

The sarne Mother Goddess was known as Kalika in Kerala, Tripura in Kashmir, and Tara in Gauda. She is Kalottara in Kaulottara yana.

 

The foreign elements in the tantras of the heterodox sects indicate a very late date for some of them. The Kubjika tantra of Kulalikamnaya, the Maha Cinakrama Tara Sadhana, the cult of Nila Tara Sarasvati or Ugra Tara, the Lamacara, etc. Show Tibetan and Chinese influences. Most of these beiong to Urdhvamnaya.

 

Dr. Bagchi derives the names of the yoginis from the name of certain sects iike the Lha-ka of Wesrern Tibet (Lakini), the Dags of Dagistan (Dakini), the Sakas (Sakini), and the Rankini worshippers of Santal Parganas (Rakini). He holds that the orthodox tantrik school of eighteen agamas prevailed it Madhyas desa and in the outer regions the Vamamarga was current.

 

The three schools of tantra marga are Kadi, Hadi and Kahadi. Kahadi or Sakti sangama belongs to Urdhvamnaya, of which parampara the Kularnava is the foremost authority. The printed text of the Kularnava is evidently only a fragment and reveals no foreign influence.

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