Religion Through Cultural Boundaries
Aleksandra Wenta (Florence)
Early Tantric Magic: An Example of Śaiva (Hindu)-Buddhist Intertextuality in Pre- modern India
This presentation deals with the emergence of early tantric Buddhism in India and its transmission to Tibet through the lenses of the widespread and little-investigated phenomenon of tantric magic across Buddhist and Śaiva (Hindu) sectarian boundaries. In particular, I will focus on the magical technologies employed by tantric texts and reconstruct the mechanics they deemed efficacious to bring about magical results. In large part, the magical technology of early tantric magic relies on the manipulation of a wide range of material objects or substances—grains, minerals, chemicals, plants, sweets, dolls, animals, items retrieved from the cremation ground, etc. My aim in the following presentation is to examine the available evidence for the recourse to different magical technologies in the early tantric milieu, and classify them on the basis of the various material objects they use. My analysis will also provide examples of Śaiva-Buddhist intertextuality in the light of thematic and linguistic parallels found in the magical recipes.
Traces of “Buddhist Iranian” in early Chinese Buddhist translations