'yogini' in South Asia: Interdisciplinary Approaches
By: Istvan Keul (editor)Hardback
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In different stages in the history of South Asian religions, the term yogini has been used in various contexts to designate various things: a female adept of yoga, a female tantric practitioner, a sorceress, a woman dedicated to a deity, or a certain category of female deities. This book brings together recent interdisciplinary perspectives on the medieval South Asian cults of the Yoginis, such as textual-philological, historical, art historical, indological, anthropological, ritual and terminological. The book discusses the medieval yogini cult, as illustrated in early Saiva tantric texts, and their representations in South Asian temple iconography. It looks at the roles and hypostases of yoginis in contemporary religious traditions, as well as the transformations of yogini-related ritual practices. In addition, this book systematizes the multiple meanings, and proposes definitions of the concept and models for integrating the semantic fields of 'yogini.' Highlighting the importance of research from complementary disciplines for the exploration of complex themes in South Asian studies, this book is of interest to scholars of South Asian Studies and Religious Studies.
Istvan Keul is Professor in the Study of Religions at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway. His main field of interest is South Asian religion, and he has previously published on the Hindu deity Hanuman.
1. Introduction: Tracing Yoginis: Religious Polysemy in Cultural Contexts Istvan Keul Part 1: 'Yogini': Definitions and categories 2. What is a Yogini? Towards a Polythetic Definition Shaman Hatley 3. The Category of the Yogini as a Gendered Practitioner Sondra L. Hausner Part 2: History, cosmography, hagiography 4. The Abode of the Pancamudras: A Yogini temple in Early Medieval Varanasi Peter Bisschop 5. The Presence of Yoginis in Madhya Pradesh: An Epigraphic Study Nilima Chitgopekar 6. Cosmographic Buildings of India: The Circles of the Yoginis Heinrich von Stietencron 7. Relationships and Visions: The Yogini as Deity and Human Female in Tantric Buddhism Louise Child Part 3: Art history 8. Yoginis in Stone: Auspicious and Inauspicious Power Padma Kaimal 9. The Goddess Hinghalaja of the Yogini Shrine at Khajuraho Devangana Desai 10. The Yoginis of the Bayon Peter D. Sharrock Part 4: Ethnography 11. Yoginis in Bengali Religious Traditions: Tribal, Tantric and Bhakti Influences June McDaniel 12. Alternative Yoginis with Alternative Powers: Singing the Blues in the Causatti Yogini Devi Mandir of Varanasi Fabrizio Ferrari 13. Invoking the Erotic Mother: The Outcaste Priestess and the Heroic Men Priyadarshini Vijasri Part 5: Possession, sexuality, dance 14. Yogini Possession in Early Saiva Tantras Judit Torzsok 15. Can Encounters with Yoginis in the Jayadrathayamala Be Described as Possession? Olga Serbaeva Saraogi 16. The Yogini and the Tantric Sex Rite, or How to Keep a Secret Loriliai Biernacki 17. Performing Hirapur: Dancing the Sakti Rupa Yogini Alessandra Lopez y Royo
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