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Title: I before He : the Tirumantiram's path to body-centric spiritual liberation
Authors: Venkat, Pranav
Keywords: Humanities::History::Asia::Southeastern Asia
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: Nanyang Technological University
Source: Venkat, P. (2022). I before He : the Tirumantiram's path to body-centric spiritual liberation. Final Year Project (FYP), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
Abstract: This thesis argues that the Tirumantiram proposes a clear pathway beginning from body-centred practices that focus on realising the divine within the self, before progressing to the more abstract and harder to attain forms of spiritual realisation more commonly associated with Vedāntic texts. The text clearly lays down a path that first emphasises steadying the body and turning the focus of the mind inwards by using bodily practices such as breathing exercises, the recitation of mantras and meditation, before it goes on to elaborate extensively on Kundalini yoga allowing divine energy to travel up from the base of the spine to the head, which can supposedly facilitate self-realisation. For practitioners who have mastered these body-oriented practices, the text traces a pathway to jīvanmukti (spiritual liberation that occurs during life, not after death) in a manner that is closely associated with Vedāntic philosophies of realising the divine. This emphasis on jīvanmukti through bodily practices sets the Tirumantiram apart from the primarily devotional scriptures of the Tamil Saiva canon and offers us an interesting insight into the role of Tantric practices in South Indian religious orders in early Medieval India.
Schools: School of Humanities 
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SoH Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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