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TheTantricBody

TheSecretTraditionofHinduReligion
Gavin Flood

(Excerpt)

INNER WORSHIP

Thepurificationoftheelementsinthebody,thebhtauddhiordehauddhi,isanimportantpartofthe

tantricpractitionerssequenceofdailyrites.Indeed,ifanypracticeischaracteristicoftantrictraditionsit

isthebhtauddhi.Itsignifiesthedestructionoftheimpure,materialbodythroughtheabsorptionof

the elements within it, which is followed by the creation of a divine body through the imposition of

mantras(nysa),mentalorinternalworship(antara/mnasayga),andexternalworship(bhyayga).

Oneoftheinterestingissuesinthestudyofthebhtauddhi,andoftantricritualingeneral,istherelation

betweenitsrepresentationinthetexts,actualritualperformance,andtheologyordoctrine.Assuminga

distinction between ritual performance and its textual representation, the present paper will firstly

examine with reference to the bhtauddhi, the claim that tantric traditions share a common ritual

substrate.Thisclaimofritualinvarianceinthefaceoftheologicaldivergencehasbeenmadebyanumber

ofscholars,mostnotablybyAlexisSanderson,2AndrPadoux3andHlneBrunner,4andthepresent

studysupportsthisgeneralclaimthroughexaminingthebhtauddhiintheJayakhysahit,butalso

with reference to the anaiva.gurudeva.paddhati. Secondly, I shall examine the language of ritual

descriptionintheseaccountsofthebhtauddhi,showinghowapragmaticanalysisthrowslightonthe

relationofthePacartrareadertothetextandhasimplicationsforthenatureofselfidentityimplicit

withinthem.Thatis,thelanguageofthetextsallowsfortheidentificationofthereaderwiththesubject
matterwhileatthesametimemaintaininganimpersonalvoiceconcordantwiththepresentationofthese

textsasrevelation.Thiskindofmechanismensuresculturalreplicationthroughthegenerations

TEXTUAL SOURCES OF THE BHTA-UDDHI

TheoriginsofthebhtauddhipracticeareuncleaOneofitsearliestandmostelaboraterepresentations

isintheJayakhysahit(JS),aPacartratextquotedbytheKmriauthorUtpalcrya(c.925975

c.e.)

and so predating him.5 The purification of the elements is also found in Buddhist Vajrayana ritual,

although the AnuttaraYoga Tantras are themselves derived from aiva prototype 6 The roots of the

bhtauddhi may, however, be much oldeThere are arguably two sources here. Firstly there are

offerings made into the sacrificial fire in vedic ritual, along with early cosmological speculation of

SkhyanandprotoskhyanmetaphysicForexample,theBhadrayakaupaniaddescribesmaking

offeringsofgheeintothesacredfiretotheearth,atmosphereandsky,7althoughmakingofferingstothe

sequenceofelementsdoesnotoccuThegeneralideaoftheidentificationofthebodywiththecosmos

is,ofcourse,ancientwithtextualantecedentsintheVeda.8Secondlyitsoriginsmayarguablybefoundin

earlyBuddhistmeditationtraditionswiththektsna/kasiayatanaexercisesandthecultivationofthe

meditativesign(nimitta)thatleadsintomeditativeabsorption(jhana).Indeed,itispossiblyherethat

wefindtheoriginsofthevisualizationmethodsthatweretobecomesoimportantinthetantrictraditions,

bothHinduandBuddhist.Thekasin.ayatanaaretenamongfortyobjectsofmeditation(kammahana

)describedinBuddhaghosasViuddhiMagga,9althoughtheyalsooccurinthePalicanonitself.10The

kasin.as comprise thefiveelements andfivecolours,11focussing uponwhich leadsintothelevelsof

meditation(jhana).Forexample,theearthkasin.aisaclaydisc,anobjectofconcentrationthatbecomes
internalised.Inthiswaythekasin.aisakintotheinternallyarisingsign(nimitta),likeanafterimage,which

leadsintojhana.12Tracesofthesepracticescanperhapsbefoundinthebhtauddhi,particularlyin

thevisualizationofthevajra,possiblyadiscoflightthatoccursinthesequenceofpurifyingtheearth

element.InaHinducontext,thebhtauddhisearliestoccurrencesareintheJSandtheaivaKamik

agama . 13 There is a passage in the Netratantra, a aiva text, which mentions the five elements in

connectionwiththepotsrequiredforconsecration(abhieka)oftheacaryaandsadhaka,although

noritualdetailsaregiven.14InaivaSiddhantaastandardsourceforthebhtauddhiistheSoma

ambhupaddhati (SSP), itself based on the Kamik agama and the Acintyavivasar akhya which,

BrunnerLachaux observes, in places Somasambhu follows line by line. 15 The ana

iva.gurudeva.paddhati (ISP) follows the Somaambhupaddhati (11th cent.) as does the Aghora

ivcryapaddhati (12th cent.). The term bhtauddhi also occurs in other Saiddhantika treatises,

includingatextcalledtheBhtauddhi.16Laterthebhtauddhiisfoundinyurvedicpracticeswithin

theregimeofcleansingthebodysimpurities.17Todemonstrateacommonstructureinthebhtauddhi

rite,uponwhichareestablisheddivergentsectariantheologies,IshalltakeexamplesfromtheJSandISP.

THE BHTA-SUDDHI IN THE TANTRIC REVELATION

ThePacartraandaivaSiddhntatraditionsmaintaineddistinctrevelations,eachregardingtheother

aseitherheretical,intheformercase,orasalowerlevelofrevelation,inthelattercase.Indefendingthe

revealedstatusofthePacartraSahitaas,largelyagainstitsorthodoxdetractors,Yamunaargues

that although they share the name of tantra, the Pacartra is revelation (ruti ), whereas the aiva

Tantrasarenotandwerepromulgatedbyivatodeceivetheworld.18Similarlyaivatheologians,both

fromthedvaitaaivaSiddhntaandthenonSaiddhntiktraditions,regardedonlycertainaivaTantras

as the highest revelation and relegated the Pacartra texts to a lower level. The Saiddhntik

Rmakanha maintains that the Pacartra only reaches the level of prkti and that the supreme
Pacartradeity,Nryaa,isidentifiedwiththislevel,19asdoesthemonistKemarja.20Yetinspite

oftheprofesseddivergenceoftheaivaandPcartrasystemsandthedesireoftheirprotagoniststo

distancetheirtraditionsfromeachother,thereisahighdegreeofoverlap,notonlyintermsoftheology,

butespeciallyatthelevelofritualrepresentation.Thissimilarityofritualprocessinourtextspointstoa

ritual substrate common to the theologically distinct Pacartra and aiva traditions. Although ritual

contents in terms of mantras and deities vary, the sequence of daily and occasional rites cuts across

sectariandistinctionsandpointstoanalmostindependentlifeofritualrepresentationinthesetexts.Part

ofthistextuallyrepresentedritualsubstratearevarioushierarchicalcosmologiessuchasthesixways

(saadhvan),whichareparallelritualcoursesthroughthecosmosinscribedonthebody.21Theseways

incorporatethecosmologicalcategories(tattva)andtheirdivisionintofiverealms(kala).Intheaiva

system we have 36tattvas, which adds 11 aiva ones to the 25 Skhya ones, while the Pacartra

assumesonlytheSkhyacategories,althoughithascosmologicalfunctionsanalogoustothehigheraiva

ones.Thereisacommonoverallstructurehereofapure,mixedandimpurecreation,althoughforthe

monisticTrikaSaivism,thebroaddistinctionisbetweenthepureandtheimpurecreations.Whilethese

cosmologies are theologically important as can be seen in Bhojadevas linking of higher beings to

differentlevelsofthecosmosintheTattvapraka22theirprimaryimportanceisasritualratherthan

theologicalentities;cosmologyhasaprimarilyritualfunctioninthesetraditions.23Thiscanbeillustrated

particularlywellinthebhtauddhisequencewherethecosmosismappedontothebodyanddissolved,

asthelowerlevelsofthecosmosaredissolvedintothehigherduringthecosmicdissolution(pralaya).

TheterminologyhereisthatofthetattvasofSkhyainwhichthegrosselements(bhta)whichcomprise

the physical world, are dissolved into the subtle elements (tanmtra ) which are their source. The

purificationofthebodythroughdissolvingitsconstituentelementsintotheircause,wouldseemtobea

characteristicallytantricpracticeasitsabsencefromVaikhanasaritualmanualsindicates.24Withinall

tantricoragamicritual,visualizationofritualactionanddeitiesisofcentralimportanceindailyand
occasional rites, and in both the Pacartra and the aiva Siddhnta to perform a visualization is to

performamentalactionwhichhassoteriologicaleffects.Onceinitiated,theaivaorVaiavaadeptinto

thesecultswasexpectedtoperformobligatorydailyworship.ForthePacartrin,accordingtoGupta,

this involved the five obligatory acts adopted from vedic orthopraxy, characterised by Gupta as the

recitationofstotras(brahmayaja),dailyliturgy(devayaja),makingofferingstomalevolentsupernatural

beings(bhutayaja),makingofferingstotheancestors(pityaja)andthefeedingof(Vais.n.ava)guests

(nyaja).25 The Saiddhantika similarly follows the orthoprax injunctions of the Dharmasastra,

performingritesatthejunctures(samdhya)oftheday,particularlythepujaatdawn(asdothe

Pacaratrins).26Thepurposeofthisdailyritual,apartfromitsbeingasignofhisadherencetothe

cultofhisinitiation,wastoenablethedevoteetoeventuallydestroythelimitingfactors(mala)which

constrainhissoul(jva)withinthecycleofreincarnation(samsara),andsotobereadyforliberation

(moka)byreceivingthegraceoftheLord(ivaorVis.n.u)athisdeath.InthissensethePacartraand

aivaSiddhantaareverydifferentfromthemonistictraditionsofnonSaiddhantikaSaivism,as

Sanderson has demonstrated. 27 The JS describes four classes of disciple, the samayaja, putraka,

sadhaka,andacarya,28eachhavingundergoneaparticularablution(abhiekah.)aspartofhis

initiation(dka).29OnlytheinitiatedPacaratrinisauthorisedtoperformthedailyliturgicalrites,

the broad parameters of which common to all tantric traditions are ablutions (snanam ), the

purification of the body (dehauddhi or bhtauddhi), the divinization of the body through the

impositionofmantrasuponit(nyasa),innerormentalworship(antara/manasayaga)performed

purelyintheimagination,andexternalworship(bahyayaga)withofferingsofflowers,incenseandso

ontothedeity.30Chapter10oftheJSisdevotedtobhtauddhiandthespiritualascentofthesoul

(jva)readyforthecreationofthedivinizedbody.Throughsymbolicallydestroyingthephysicalorgross

body,theadeptcancreateapure,divinizedbody(divyadeha)withwhichtoofferworshiptothedeities

ofhissystem.He(theinitiateinourtextsismale)doesthisfirstlyonlyinimaginationandsecondlyinthe
physicalworld,forasinalltantricsystemsonlyagodcanworshipagod.Thetextualrepresentation

ofthebhtauddhiissetwithinasequenceinwhichthephysicalorelementalbody(bhautikaarra)is

purifiedandthesoulascendsfromtheheartthroughthebody,andanalogouslythroughthecosmos,to

theLordNarayan.alocatedatthecrownofthehead.Thetextpresentsuswithadetailedaccountof

thisprocess,whichcanbesummarizedasfollowGoingtoapure,unfrequented,butcharmingplace,the

adeptoffersobeisancetoHari,payshomagetothelineageofteachers(gurusantati),andhavingreceived

thementalcommand(manasaja)fromtheLordandlineageofteachers,heisreadytoperform

mentalaction(manasm.nirvahet...kriyam).31Thepractitionerpurifieshishandswiththeweapon

(astra)mantra,andtheplacethroughvisualisingViulikeathousandsuns,vomitingflamesfromhis

mouth,andtheearthbakedbythefireofmantra.32Inthisprocessweseetheconstructionofaritual

bodyinoppositiontothegeneticorbiologicalbodywhich,initsnonritualstate,isimpure(malina),

subject to decay (kayin), not autonomous (asvatantra), and made from blood and semen

(retoraktodbhava).33 The nonpurified body is the opposite of the Lords body possessed of the six

qualities.34Thepurificationofthebodyentailstheconstructionoftheritualbody;aprocesswhichhad

begunwith bathingandwhichcontinueswiththeselectionof theplaceandtheplacing ofabladeof

sacredgrass,flowerorleafinthetuftofhairwithmantra.35Thesymbolicdestructionofthebodytakes

placethroughdissolvingtheelementsofthecosmoswithinit.Asinthefinaldissolutionofthecosmos

wheneachelementorcategoryretractsintoitssource,soindailyritualthisprocessisrecapitulatedwithin

the adepts body. The actual process occurs through linking together sequences of syllables to form

mantrasassociatedwiththeelements,suchastheOMSLAMPR.THIVYAIHUMPHAT.corresponding

totheearthelement,whicharemodifiedforeachelement,replacingthebjasSLAMwithVAM.,

HYAMandKSMAMasnecessary.36Eachoftheelementsisvisualizedinacertainway,associated

withparticularsymbols,andaspervadingaparticularpartofthebodyinahierarchicalsequence.Each

elementisinturnsymbolicallydestroyedintheimaginationthroughbeingabsorbedintoitsmantraand
intotheenergies(saktayah.)ofthepowers(vibhavah.)orsubtleelements(tanmatrah.)whichgave

risetoit.Forexample,theJSdescribesthepurificationoftheearthelementasfollows:turyaram

ptabha m bhumi m cintayed vajralacitam / abdadyaih. pacabhir yukta m

nagadrumasamakulam // puraprakarasusariddvparn. avaparikr.tam / sa mviant smared

bahyatpuraken.asvavigrahe//proccarayamcatanmantramvirantamathacintayet/janvoh.

padatalamyavattayavyaptamkramen.atu//kumbhakenadvijares.t.hamantramurtausvake

tatoh./anaih.sanairlayamyatamgandhaaktaucamantrarat.//gandhaaktimcatampa

cadrecakenabahih.ks.ipet/(Thepractitioner)shouldvisualizeaquadrangular,yellowearth,marked

withthesignofthunder,connectedwiththefive,soundetc.[i.e.sabda,sparsa,rupa,rasaandgandha]

andfilledwithtreesandmountains,adornedwithoceans,islands,goodriversandwalledtownHeshould

visualize(thatearth)enteringhisownbodyfromtheoutsidewithaninhaledbreath,andutteringthe

mantraheshouldimagineitastranquilized,pervadingindueorderfromthekneestothesolesofthefeet

bymeansoftheretainedbreath,ObestoftwicebornoneThen,(heshouldvisualizetheearth)gradually

dissolvedinitsmantraform,andthismantrakingdissolvedintheenergyofsmell.Afterthatheshould

emittheenergyofsmellwiththeexhaledbreath.37Thisprocessofinhalingthevisualizedelementthat

pervadesaparticularareaofthebody,dissolvingitintoitsmantra,thenintoitssubtlecause,andexhaling

it,isfollowedwiththeotherelementHavingexhaledtheenergyofsmellintothesubstratumofwater,

thewaterelementisthenimaginedashavingtheformofahalfmoon,markedbyalotus,andcontaining

allaquaticmediatheoceans,rivers,thesixflavors(rasaad.ka)andaquaticbeingInhalingtheimage,

itpervadestheadeptsbodyfromthethighstothekneesandisdissolvedintoitsmantra,thenintothe

energyoftaste(rasaakti)whichheemitswiththeexhaledbreath.38Thesameprocessoccurswiththe

remainingelementThetriangleoffirecontainingallfieryandbrightthings,includingbeingsathigher

levelsofthecosmoswithselfluminousbodies(svaprakasaarra),isinhaled,pervadesthebodyfrom

thenaveltowherethewaterelementhadbegun,isdissolvedintoitsmantra,intotheenergyofform
(rupasakti),andexhaledasbefore.39Similarlytheairelementisinhaled,pervadesfromthroattonavel

andisexhaledastheenergyoftouch(sparaakti).40Thismergesintospace(akasa)which,inthe

sameway,isinhaled,pervadestotheapertureoftheabsolute(brahmarandhra),dissolvesintoitsmantra,

thenintotheenergyofsound(sabdasakti),andisemittedthroughtheapertureatthecrownofthe

head(brahmarandhra).41AllthisisaccomplishedbythepowerofthemantrasoftheelementHavingleft

the body through the brahmarandhra, individualized consciousness (caitanya jvabhuta ) has

transcendedthecageoftheelements(bhutapajara)byrisingthroughtheupanis.adicstagesofspace,

thestars,lightening,thesunandmoon.42Inthiswaythesoul(jva)ascendsinimaginationupthecentral

channel(suumn.a)fromtheheart,throughthelevelsofthecosmos(pada),totheLordatthecrownof

thehead.Heisenvisagedinhissupremebody(paravigraha)asamassofradiance(tejopuja)standing

withinacircleoflight;43astandardidentificationofNarayan.awiththesun.Thejoythatarisesisthe

supremeenergyofVis.n.u(paravais.n.avakti)44andresultsinastateofhigherconsciousness

(samadhi ) that is the ineffable freedom from ideation (sankalpanirmukta avacya ).45 Although

enjoyingthisstateofbliss,theprocessofpurificationisnotyetcomplete.Havingtranscendedthesubtle

elements along with the gross body, the sadhaka should burn it with the fire arising from his feet,

generatedbythepowerofhismantra.Allthatremainsisapileofasheswhicharethenwashedawayto

the quarters in his imagination by the flood of milky water arising from his meditation.46 With the

universeofhisimaginationnowfilledwiththeoceanofmilk,alotusemergesoutofitcontainingNar

ayan.a,whoseessenceishismantra,thetruthofthesixpaths.47Thesadhakasbody,identifiedwith

Narayan.a,ispurified,freedfromoldageanddeathandhastheappearanceofpurecrystalandthe

effulgenceofathousandsunsandmoons.48Havingcreatedapurifiedbodyinthisway,hissoulenters

theinnerlotusofthissubtlebody(puryat.akakajantara)throughtheapertureoftheabsolutefrom

whichithadearliervacateditsresidence.Withacalmawareness(prasannadh)theadeptisreadyto

performworshipofthedeity(yajeddevam),49thatis,readytoperformthementalsacrifice(manasay
aga)andexternalsacrifice(bahyayaga)describedinthefollowingchapterInthetextsoftheaiva

Siddh anta we find a similar process occur ring. The SSP and ISG (which quotes the former), are

separatedfromtheJSbyatleastacoupleofcenturiesandtheiroriginsareindifferentpartsofthesub

continent:theJSisprobablyfromtheKashmirregion,50Somasambhuwastheabbotofamat.hain

SouthIndia,himselfinalineageofcompilersofritualmanuals,51andtheISGisprobablyfromKerala.52

Consideringtheregional,temporalandculticdiversityofthesetexts,itisthereforeverystrikingthatsuch

invarianceoccursatthelevelofritualrepresentation.Thereisofcourse,aclearlineofdevelopmentfrom

theSSPtotheISG,asIsanaivaquotestheSSPandcloselyfollowsthetextinritualsequencessuch

asthedehauddhi,butthereisnosuchclearlineofhistoricaldevelopmentfromtheJSintotheaiva

material.Itwouldthereforeseemlikely,fromanexaminationofthepurificationofthebodysequences

in texts of diverse lineages, that we are looking at a common ritual substrate articulated within the

spectrumoftantrictraditionTheISGsequenceusesthetermdehauddhiandfollowstheaccountgiven

intheSSP:thetermsusedareoftenidenticalanditseemsprobablethatIsanaivaisfollowingSoma

sambhustext.AsintheJS,selfpurification(atmasodhanam)occursthroughthepurificationofthe

elements(bhtauddhi).Afterbathing,theadept(putraka)shouldgototheplaceofworship(yagalaya

),meditateuponthesyllableHUMbreakingtheknotsattheheart,throat,palate,betweentheeyes,

andonthehead,andvisualizeivaatthecrownoftheheadinthedvadasanta.53Theadeptshould

meditateuponthecuttingofthedarkandfilthyknots,whicharepiercedwiththeexhalingofthebreath

toallowenergytoflowintheesotericchannels(nad.).54Heshouldimaginehissoul(jva),identified

withthemantraHAMSA,inthepurelotusoftheheart.Bytheforceoftheair(vayu)inthecentral

channelheshouldleadthesouluptoivalocatedinthedvadasantaatthecrownofthehead,seated

inthecentreofalotus.55Theadeptthenmeditatesuponhisownbodyasaninvertedtreewhoseroots

areinhishead,pervadedbythethirtysixtattvas,dissolvedinimagination,eachintoitscause.56Then

beginsthedescriptionofthebhtauddhiandwearebackonterritoryfamiliarfromtheJAlthoughnew
elementshavebeenintroducedintheaivaSiddhantascheme,namelytheideaofpurifyingthebody

throughbreakingitsknots(granthiprabheda),theterminologyofthesubtlechannels(nad),andthe

useofthirtysixlevelsofthecosmos(tattva),thereisneverthelessasignificantdegreeofoverlapwith

theJAsregardsthefirststageintheprocessofpurifyingtheearthelement,thetextreads:

bhuman.d.alamyaccaturaraptamvajrankitamgandhagun.amsasadyam/ghran.endriyam

tatkalayanivr.ttyayuktamcadaivenacaturmukhena//hlambjatah.purakakumbhakabhyam

vyaptamtadapadatalamirastah./odhyamtaduddmatakapacakatsyadvayaupravis.t.a

mparibhavayecca//

Theimageoftheearth(bhuman.d.ala)isayellowsquare,markedwiththesignofthunderbolt(vajra),

whosequalityissmellandassociatedwiththeSadyamantra.Itisconnectedtothesenseorganofsmell,

the nivr.ttikala, and by the fourfaced one (Brahma). With the filling and holding breaths, the seed

syllableHLAMpervades(thebody)fromthesolesofthefeettothehead.Heshould(repeattheseed)

fivetimesforthepurposeofpurification,andheshould(then)meditateuponitasenteredintotheair

[i.eheexhalestheearthelementintotheairelement].57

AsintheJStheearthdiagram(pr.thivman.d.ala)isagoldensquaremarkedbyavajraandassociated

withthesenseofsmell,butunliketheJSitisassociatedwiththetattvas,withnivr.tti,oneofthefive

regions(kala),andpervadestheentirebody,ratherthanfromfeettokneeButthispatternisnotwholly

consistentintheaivaSiddhantaandtheVamadevapaddhatifollowstheJSmodelwiththeearth

pervadingfromfeettoknees.58Theotherelementsfollowthesamegeneralpattern,usingthesame

symbols(thecrescentmoonforwater,aredtriangleforfiremarkedwithsvastikas,airasahexagonal

formmarkedbysixdrops(bindu),andspaceassymbolizedbyaroundcrystal).AswiththeJS,theadept

burnsthebodyinimaginationandthenfloodsitwiththewaterarisingfromhismeditationinorderto

createapure,divinebodyforworship.ThetextfollowsthesamepatternastheSSPonwhichitheavily
relieAgeneralpicturethereforeemergesofthebhtauddhiasasharedritualsubstratethatbecomes

identifiedwithparticularaivacosmologieOntheonehandtheactualvisualizationrepresentedinthe

texts has become minimalized, from the JSs elaborate visions of each element to the ISGs formal

representation.Ontheother,moreelaboratecosmologicaloverlayshaveoccurred.Indeed,thesystem

ofthebhtauddhihasbecomeidentifiedwithanindependentsystemofthefiveknotsalongthecentral

channel of a subtle anatomy, and the five elements have become associated with the five faces of

Sadaiva.59Wecanthereforeseeherestrongcontinuityofritualrepresentation,althoughwithlater

structuralelaboration.ButIwishnowtoexaminethiselementofstructuralinvariancethroughacloser

analysisofthekindoflanguageusedinthesetextParticularly,Iwishtoarguethattheuseoflanguage

allows for imagination and the identification of the brahmanical reader of the text with the ritual

processesprescribed.Thisidentificationisalsothemeanswherebyatextisreconstitutedthroughthe

generationsandthewayinwhichitsmeaningisconstructedthroughtheinteractionoftheboththetexts

structuresandcontent,andthereader.

GRAMMAR,METAPHORANDINDEXICALITY

Theverbsusedforritualmeditationorvisualizationarefromtherootssm,dhya,bhucaus.,andcint.

The term smr., to remember, is particularly interesting, having a wider semantic field than simply

recallingsomethingpast.Althoughthiswouldneedtobedifferentstudytosustaintheclaim,itwould

seem that, along with these other terms, it here refers to the construction of a mental image in the

imagination.60Theseverbsaregenerallyusedinthethirdpersonoptative,apartfromgerundives,which

isallpervasiveinthesetextsandisnothingunusual.LetustakeanexampleofeachfromtheJTheyare

as follows: (1) In the destruction of the earth element we read, (The practitioner) should visualize a

quadrangular,yellowearth,markedwiththesignofthunder(turyaramptabhambhumim

cintayedvajralacitam);61(2)atthecompletionofthedissolutionofthewaterelement,withthe

inhaledbreathheshouldbringtomind,Otwicebornone,thebodyasitsownsacreddiagram,completely
filledwiththat(waterelement)(...sarramman.d.alamsvakam/tenakhilamtusamvyapta

mkumbhakenasmareddvija);62(3)inthedissolutionoftheairelementheshouldmeditateupon(the

airelement)pervadingfromthethroattotheplaceofthenavel(akan.t.hannabhidesantam

tenavyaptamtubhavayet);63and(4)inthedestructionofthespaceelementheshouldvisualize

it(thespaceelement)transformedinitsownmantra(dhyayetparin.atam...svamantre).64Again,an

exampleoftheverbsusedintheISGsimplyreinforcethisusage:(5)heshouldlead(thesoul)toiva

locatedinthedvadasanta(tamdvadasantasthaivamnayet);65and(6)heshouldmeditate

bydegreesthepiercingoftheknots(granthiprabhedamkramaovidadhyat).66Intheseexamplesthe

mainverbisinthethirdpersonsingularoptative,amoodwhich,accordingtoPan.ini,isusedinfive

sensestodenoteacommand(vidhi),asummons(nimantran.a),aninvitation(amantran.a),arespectful

command(adht.a),adeliberation(samprasna),orarequest(prarthana).67Allofthesesenses

have the implication of conditions; that the performance of certain actions will lead to certain future

effectIndeed,theoptativeimpliesactionanditseffectsinfuturetime,asitcannotrefertothepastnor

totheactualisedpresent.Asusedhere,theoptativecorrespondstoPan.inisanalysisinthatthePacar

atrinsreligiousdiscipline(vrata)isacommandfromthelord(vidhi,asinyoumustgotothevillage

gramambhavangacchet),andisalsoaninvitation(amantran.a,asindosithereihabhavan

asta)orrequestfromanauthoritativesource(prarthana,Iwouldliketostudygrammarvyakaran

.amadhyya).Theanalysisoftheoptativemoodwithindifferentschoolstendedtofocusuponthe

relationship between the person or text uttering the injunction, the receiver, and the action to be

performed.AccordingtoonecommentatoronPan.ini,Nagesabhat.t.a,thefirstfourdefinitions

(vidhietc.)canbeincludedwithinafifth,namelypravartanaorinstigation,anactivityonthepartofone

personwhichleadstoanothersperforminganaction.Thereisasequenceofimplicationintheuseofthe

optative.Namely,thattheinstigationisutteredbyanauthoritativeperson(apta);thatthereisnothing

inhibitingtheinstigation;andthattheinstigateeinfersthattheactionheisbeingaskedtoperformis
somethinghedesiresandisachievable.68Nagesadefinesthequalifiedpersonasbeingonewhois

free from confusion, anger and so on, and who does not perform actions that lead to undesired

resultAccordingtoNagesaavidhiisconnectedwithcertainpropertiesofanaction,thepropertyof

beingameanstosomethingdesired(is.t.asadhyatva),itsfeasibility(kr.tisadhyatva),andtheabsence

of inhibitory factors (pratibandhakabh ava ).69 The use of the optative in our texts is therefore

consonant with this understanding. There is therefore an imperative to perform mental action as

prescribedinthesetexts,inthesensethatifacertaincourseofactionisundertaken,thencertainresults

willfollow,afactthatcanbeinferredfromtheimperativecomingfromanauthoritativesource.Indeed,

thetermssmaret(e.g.at10.34a),cintayet(e.g.at10.28a),dhyayet(e.g.at10.54a)andbhavayet(e.g.

at10.46a)arethesamegrammaticalformastermsdenotingphysicalactions,suchasimposingorinfusing

thebodywithmantra(nyaset,e.g.at10.66b).Inthissense,itwouldseemthattheuseoftheoptativein

theTantrasisakintoitsuseintheVedas,asintheinjunctiononedesirousofheavenshouldperformthe

jyotit.omasacrifice(jyotit.omenasvargakamoyajet).70Thereisnogrammaticaldistinctionwithin

thesetextsbetweenactionsperformedinthemindandactionsperformedwiththebody.Indeedthe

grammar points in quite the opposite direction to a mind/body dualism, namely that mental action is

directlyakintophysicalaction,andthatasphysicalactionhaseffectintheritualrealm,sotoodoesmental

action. This is because the hierarchical cosmology assumed in these ritual operations is a magical

cosmology that enables actions (including mental action) to have effects at spatially and temporally

distinctlocationOnemightspeculatefurtherthattheuseoftheoptativewithitsimplicationofpossible

futureaction,isrelatedtotheimaginationorthemetaphoricalspaceinwhicheventsandabstractions

are projected; a projection which is permitted by the very structure of languages with at least three

tenses.71While,asLakoffandJohnsonhaveshown,alloflanguageispervadedbymetaphor,72theuse

oftheoptativeisparticularlysuggestiveofthepossibilityofmetaphorandofthekindsofmappingand

overcoding onto the body that we find in our textThe terms ks.ipet and nyaset imply that the adept
shouldprojectthemantraorimageintothemetaphoricalspaceofhiscreativeimagination.Thisisindeed

amentalactionthathaseffectinthatmetaphoricalspace,andwillhaveconsequencesforthepractitioner

in terms of liberation at death. Lastly, if we read these texts through a dialogical lens, the use of the

optativetellsussomethingoftherelationshipbetweenthereaderandthetext,andtellsussomething

aboutthenatureoftheselfassumed.Instructuralism,semioticsisconceivedasanaddressertransmitting

a message to an addressee who receives it, almost in a passive fashion, and decodes it. This requires

contactbetweenthetwo,acodeinwhichthemessageisformulated,andacontextthatgivessense

tothemessage.73InthecaseoftheJStheaddresser,theredactorofthetext,sendsthemessageofthe

text(theritualrepresentation)toanaddresser,thePacaratrinwhoreceivesit.If,however,welook

at ritual representation through the lens of dialogism, we are presented with a different picture. The

dialogists reject the emphasis on language as a purely abstract system, seeing it rather as constantly

changingandadaptingtoconcrete,historicalsituationsandnot,touseVoloshinovsphrase,asastable

andalwaysselfequivalentsignal.74Onthisviewthemeaningofwordsisgovernedbythecontextsof

theiroccurrence,soutterancecanbeaccountedforonlyasasocialphenomenon.Languageisaprocess

generatedintheinteractionofspeakerswithinsocialcontextTurningtoourtexts,whereasastructuralist

readingoftheJSandISPpresentstheBrahmanicaladdresseeinpurelypassivetermsasthedecoderofa

messagefromthetext(andfromthepast),adialogicalreadingwouldseebothaddresserandaddressee

as constructing the texts meaning. That is, there is a dialogical relationship between sender and

receiver and meaning is constructed between the two rather than passively received and an original

meaningdecoded.Thisgeneralrelationshipbetweenthereaderandtheaddressercanbemoreclosely

analyzedandtextuallyinstantiatedintermsofwhatmightbecalledarelationshipbetweenextratextual

indexicality and intratextual anaphora. The dialogical relationship is between the implicit (Brahman)

reader,anotionalI,andthecharactersofthetextwhoyetcanfunctionindexicallyasILetmeexplain

thiInPragmatics,deixisorindexicals,suchasfirstandsecondpersonpronounsandlocativeandtemporal
adverbssuchashereandthere,arecontrastedwithanaphorictermswhichrefertoapreviousitemin

adiscourse(suchashe,she,itandthey).Thus,indexicalityalwaysrefersoutsideofitselftoacontext

(aswouldbeindicatedbyyouorthere)whereasanaphoradoesnotreferoutsideoftheutterance;the

termhe,forexamplewouldrefertoapreviouslynamedperson.Thequalitiesofindexicalityareboth

generalisedandreferential,inexorablylinkedtothecontextofutterance.Whenweshifttoanaphoric

terms,tothethirdpersonforexample,discourseceasestohavetheindexicalqualitiesofdeixiclanguage.

Anaphora is always discourseinternal in that terms such as he or her are substitutes for some

previouslynamedpersonorentity.AshasbeendiscussedbyUrbaninanimportantpaper,acomplication

arises when apparently indexical terms are used anaphorically in direct discourse.75 I becomes

anaphoric,forexample,whenplacedinasentencesuchasShesaidImgoingtotheriver,wherethe

Idoesnotrefertoanythingoutsideofthenarrativeitself.TheIisanemptysigninthesensethatitis

not referential with respect to a specific reality. This is important in the context of the ritual

representations in tantric textFor example, in the JS the following from early in the bhtauddhi

sequenceistypicalofthestyleofritualprescription:hastauddhimtatah.kuryadyathatacchn.u

narada/Hearthis,ONarada,howoneshouldthenperformthepurificationofthehand76Inthis

dialoguebetweentheLord(Bhagavan)andthesageNarada,Naradaisaddressedinthesecondperson.

TheLordusestheimperative,hearthis(tacchn.u),whichisanaphoricinthattheimpliedtvam(you)

referstothesagenamedinthevocative.Ontheotherhand,theritualprescriptionisinthethirdperson

singularoptative,heshouldperform(kuryad).Thethirdpersonthereforetakestheplaceofthesecond

persondirectedtoNaradaandindirectlytothereaderofthetext,butitsuseservestoformalizeand

distancethediscoursefromanydirectindexicalreference.Thisyouofdiscourse,anindexicalusedinan

anaphoricway,isreplacedinthetextbytheclearlyanaphoricthirdperson.Theritualistreaderofthe

textisbeingaddressedbytheLordindirectlythroughNarada,whostandsinforthepractitioneIndeed

theMmam.saschoolofphilosophycorroboratesthisgeneralpointwheninclaimingthattheuseof
thethirdpersonoptativeinvedicinjunctionactuallyreferstome,thereaderofthetext,performingthe

ritualinjunction.77Wemightmakeasimilarclaimoftheritualinjunctionhere.Thislinguisticform,the

objectification of the ritual performer, has the effect of controlling the dialogic relations between the

charactersandthereadeInthepassagefromtheJStheanaphoricthirdpersonisindirectlyunderstood

bythetextsreceiverorreadertobereferringtotheindexicalI.Thereaderunderstandsthatthethird

personactuallyreferstotheindexicalI,throughNarada.Theobjectofthesecondpersondiscourseis

alsothegrammaticalsubjectofthethirdpersonoptatives,andmoreoverindirectlyrefersoutsideofthe

texttothereadeInthisway,thetextsmeaningisconstructedthroughtheidentificationoftheindexical

I,thatisthebrahmanicalreaderofthetext,withthethirdpersonunderstoodasthoughindexical.Yet

beingarticulatedin the thirdperson optativealsomaintainsanimpersonalvoiceconcordantwiththe

claimed universality of the revelation. Furthermore the use of the optative allows for the imaginative

identificationoftheindexicalIwiththeimpliedIofthetextitself.Thegrammarofthetextallowsforthe

imaginativeidentificationofthereaderwiththerepresentationoftheritualpractitioneCertainlyoneof

thefunctionsofthesetextsistheculturalreplicationofritualrepresentation.Throughthiskindofanalysis

wecanseehowthetextachievesthereplicationofritualprocesses,andsotheperpetuationoftradition,

throughtheidentificationoftheindexicalIwiththeanaphoricthirdpersonintheoptativemood.The

thirdpersonoptativefunctionsasasubstituteforananaphoricIinthetext:theanaphoricIisdeferred

throughthethirdperson.Thesocialagentthebrahmanicalreaderinourcasewishestoclosethegap

betweentheindexicalIandthedeferredanaphoricIofthetextsthroughimaginationandprojection

intothemetaphoricalspaceallowedbytheuseoftheoptative.Imaginationprovidesawarenessofthe

possibilityoftransformationandthepossibilityofbehavinginawaythatallowsthegoalsofthetradition,

internalizedthroughtheidentificationofthetwoIs,toberealized.Thereplicationofthetextandthe

truthvalueitcontainsforacommunity,suggestsfurthermorethatthetext,asUrbanandSilversteinhave

argued,isatropeofculturewhichisconstantlydecontextualised,orliberatedfromaspecifichistorical
context,andrecontextualisedinanewcontext.Theseprocessestheyhavecalledentextualisationand

co(n)textualisation.78 Texts are the result of continuous cultural processes that create and recreate

themoveragainasmeaningfulobjectsortropes,whichareconstructedashavingdetemporalisedand

despacialisedmeaningBywayofconclusionthen,wecanseethisprocessoccurringinthebhtauddhi

sequences of the JS and ISG. These texts transcend the boundaries of their production and are

reconstitutedthroughthegenerations,especiallythroughtheidentificationofthereaderofthetextwith

theritualistrepresented.Touseamoretechnicalterminology,thisistheprocessoftheidentificationof

theindexicalIwiththeIimpliedbythetext.Thebhtauddhiisaritualrepresentationthatfunctions

asatrope,informingtheindividualpractitionerthroughtheprocessoftheindexicalidentificationwith

the anaphoric pronouns in the discourse. The textual representation of the bhtauddhi is made

meaningfulbyboththecontentofthetextsandbytheconstructionofitsmeaningintheimaginationby

thebrahmanicalreadeOneoftheprimarytasksinthestudyoftantrictraditionsthereforebecomesthe

inquiryintothewaysinwhichthesetextshavebeentransmitted,theirinternalisationbytheindividual

practitioner,andthefunctionofthesetextswithinthepracticesofthetradition.Throughfocussingon

thebhtauddhi,itishopedthatthepresentpaperhasmadesomecontributiontothisunderstanding.