Course Memo

This seminar systematically explores the history, fundamental principles, theologies, and practices that are known as Nondual Trika Saivism, sometimes referred to as "Kashmir Saivism." Trika Saivism is a nondual tantric path of embodied liberation that synthesizes many Indic theologies, lending to a sophisticated and inclusive ontology of nondifference between self and the world. The Trika's revolutionary pan-Indian movement extended well beyond the borders of Kashmir, though it flourished in Northern India during the medieval period (10th to 11th centuries CE). The word "Trika" means "triple" or "triad" and refers to the its tutelary triad of female deities, Para, Parapara, and Apara, who represent manifest and unmanifest levels of consciousness. Supreme consciousness, Para Sakti, is forever coeval and united with Siva. In addition to weekly reading of primary and secondary source materials, students are expected to write reading reflections and a final paper. Each weekly seminar will be comprised of both lecture and student-led discussions.