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Religions 2017, 8(10), 217; doi:10.3390/rel8100217

Reinscribing the Goddess into the Culturally Relative Minutiae of Tantric Texts and Practices: A Perennialist Response to Tantric Visual Culture

Department of Religion and Philosophy, Berry College, Rome, Georgia 30149, USA
Received: 27 July 2017 / Revised: 30 September 2017 / Accepted: 1 October 2017 / Published: 3 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Society for Tantric Studies Proceedings (2016))
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Abstract

A celebration and critical evaluation of Sthaneshwar Timalsina’s brilliant book, Tantric Visual Culture: A Cognitive Approach. In this groundbreaking work, Timalsina utilizes the lens of cognitive studies to shed interpretive light on the Tantric visualization practices that he knows both as a scholar and lifetime practitioner. Timalsina argues that mastery of Tantric practice requires immersion in the culturally relative metonymic and holographic logic framed by the Tantric ritual texts. The conclusion that arises from his analysis is that Tantric “truths” are bound to the linguistic and cultural systems that frame them. In response, I herewith offer a perennialist critique and argument for a more nuanced consideration of the transcendent “truth” or “being” that is the stated aim of Tantric practice. View Full-Text
Keywords: metonymy; Tantra; cognitive science; cultural relativism; perennialism; hologram; sādhanā; visualization practice; J. Z. Smith; Mircea Eliade metonymy; Tantra; cognitive science; cultural relativism; perennialism; hologram; sādhanā; visualization practice; J. Z. Smith; Mircea Eliade
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Lidke, J.S. Reinscribing the Goddess into the Culturally Relative Minutiae of Tantric Texts and Practices: A Perennialist Response to Tantric Visual Culture. Religions 2017, 8, 217.

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