Loading Events

This event is over. See upcoming events

Sun 28 May 2023

11:20 AM - 7:00 PM (UTC+5.5)

Online Symposium on Acharya Abhinavagupta

Symposium on

Acharya Abhinavagupta:

Ancient Paradigm for Multi Disciplinary Humanities

Abhinavagupta, the 10th-century Indian philosopher, mystic, and aesthetician, was a key figure in the development of what is now known as Kashmir Shaivism, a school of thought that emphasizes the unity of consciousness and the world. His writings on philosophy, aesthetics, and music have had a profound influence on Indian culture.

His magnum opus is the Tantraloka, a comprehensive treatise on Kashmir Shaivism. He also wrote extensively on aesthetics and music. He believed that art and music are powerful tools for spiritual realization. In his writings on aesthetics, he developed a theory of rasa, or aesthetic experience and argued that rasa is a state of consciousness that is beyond pleasure and pain. It is a state of pure bliss that is experienced when the individual’s consciousness merges with the object of their aesthetic experience. A towering figure in Indian thought, his ideas continue to be studied and debated today.

INDICA is delighted to organise an online symposium to commemorate the birth anniversary of this great polymath. We are grateful to eminent scholars from around the world who have agreed to grace this occasion and share their scholarship with all of us.

This online event is open to all. We welcome participants from across the world to register and join us in this celebration.


S.No Name Topic of Presentation  Time Slot (IST)
1 Dimple Kaul
Servant Leader, INDICA Courses
Overview of the Symposium 11:20
2 Dr. Nagaraj Paturi,
Senior Director & Chief Curator, INDICA
Welcome Address
The Idea of “Abhinavagupta: Ancient Indian Paradigm for Multidisciplinary Humanities
3 Prof. Navjivan Rastogi
Scholar, Author
Situating Abhinavagupta in Mainstream Indian Philosophy 12:00
4 Professor (Dr.) Ramakant Angiras
former Professor of Kalidas Chair & Head, Department of Sanskrit, Punjab University, Chandigarh
आचार्य अभिनव गुप्त के सम्पूर्णता- प्रत्यय की प्रासंगिकता
Relevance of Acharya Abhinav Gupta’s Philosophy of Sampurnata Pratyaya
5 Prof. Sthaneshwar Timalsina
Scholar, Author
Introduction to the Philosophy of Abhinavagupta 13:30
6 Prof. Penna Madhusudan
D. Litt. (Hon), Vice Chancellor, Professor and Dean, Dept of Indian Philosophy, Kavikulaguru Kalidas Sanskrit University, Ramtek, Maharashtra.
Yoga as Understood by Abhinvagupta 14:15
7 Shri Swastik Bannerjee
University Research Fellow, Department Of Philosophy University of Calcutta
Nature of Self as Consciousness in Trika, with Reference to Abhinavagupta 15:00
8 Shri George Barselaar
Scholar, Author
Swami Lakshmanjoo’s Contribution to Abhinavagupta’s Teachings on Trika Darshana 15:45
9 Dr. Chaman Lal Raina
Fellow, Center of Spirituality, Florida International University
Abhinavgupta with a Vision of Aesthetics 16:30
10 Shri Giriratna Mishra
Scholar, Author
Shakta Core of Shaivacharya Mahamahesvara Abhinavagupta 17:15
11 Dr. Sunthar Visuvalingam
Scholar, Author
Abhinavagupta on Rasa-dhvani: Emotion as Meaning 18:00
12 Dr. Mark Dyczkowski
Senior Shaiva Scholar
Abhinavagupta’s Revival and Profound Exegesis of Trika “Saivism” 18:45
13 Dimple Kaul,
Servant Leader, INDICA Courses
Vote of Thanks  19:30

Dimple Kaul

Servant Leader, INDICA Courses

Dimple, the Servant Leader at Indica Courses, is a learner, writer, poet, marketer, transformation coach and Life Enthusiast! Her education spans the humanities (MA, Liberal Arts), technology (B.E., Electronics and Communication) and business management (MMS, Marketing). She is currently pursuing Ph.D. in Development Studies. Dimple has led projects in austere environments, working with several multinational corporations. She has also been guiding several nonprofit organizations through strategic initiatives, serving as a pro-bono volunteer consultant, communications executive and transformation coach. With two decades of professional experience across Media, Telecom and Technology, she now serves the field of Indigenous Knowledge Systems through INDICA Courses – the pioneering EdTech start-up founded by INDICA.


Dr. Nagaraj Paturi

Senior Director & Chief Curator, INDICA

Trained in Sanskrit and Advaita Vedanta by his hyper-polyglot, polymath and spiritually accomplished sakala-shaastra-paarangata father, late Sri Paturi Sitaramanjaneyulu garu, Dr Nagaraj Paturi is seriously committed to the transmission of Vedic sciences to the present generation. In his PhD thesis (1998, University of Hyderabad), he developed an Indic Model of Myth Criticism of Literature and in his MPhil (1987, University of Hyderabad), he foregrounded Vakyapadiya as the theoretical foundation of the Ashtadhyayi. In addition to over 50 publications and about 60 conference/seminar/workshop papers, Dr Paturi has designed several courses pertaining to the contemporary applications of Vedic Sciences and has been successfully teaching them and getting them taught. Formerly Senior Professor of Cultural Studies FLAME School of Communication (& FLAME School of Liberal Education) and a Visiting Professor, University of Chicago (USA), Dr Paturi is currently Senior Director and Chief Curator at INDICA, a Distinguished Professor, Curriculum Designer, Executive Committee Member, Board of Studies, MIT School of Vedic Sciences (Pune, Maharashtra), Member, Board of Studies at Kavikulaguru Kalidasa Sanskrit University (Ramtek, Maharashtra) and Rashtram School of Public Leadership (Sonipat, Haryana). He is also the Editor-in-Chief of International Journals of Studies in Public Leadership and is a member of the Advisory Council of Veda Vijnana Shodha Samsthanam (Bengaluru, Karnataka). He has provided consultancy to numerous culture research, theatre, and dance innovation projects. He has authored scores of creative writing works for Classical Dance, Modern Theater, and magazines and has delivered several series of talks and other programs on Radio and Television channels.


Prof. Navjivan Rastogi

Scholar, Author

Navjivan Rastogi, a scholar known for his intellectual integrity, depth and commitment, hails in the illustrious lineage of K C Pandey, who during early twentieth-century ‘discovered’ Abhinavagupta as a great Kashmir Śaiva philosopher and master aesthetic thinker to the world academy. Some twentyfour years back he retired from Lucknow University as Professor and Chair of Sanskrit, and Honorary Director Abhinavaupta Institute of Aesthetics & Śaiva Philosophy. With the publication of his Krama Tantricism Volume-I, in 1979 Rastogi’s academic prowess came to be widely noticed. His other publications for which he is known are: Introduction to the Tantrāloka – A Study in Structure and Abhinavagupta kā Tantrāgamīya Darśana (“tantrāgamic philosophy of Abhinavagupta”). His Kāśmīra Śivādvyavāda meṁ Pramāṇa-cintana, published a decade back, may be reckoned as first systematic attempt toward unraveling the epistemological theorizing in Śaiva non-dualism of Kashmir. He has also edited Tantrāloka with Viveka of Jayaratha in eight volumes (jointly with R. C. Dwivedi) as well as Abhinavā : Perspectives on Abhinavagupta, Studies in Memory of K.C. Pandey (jointly with Meera Rastogi). Kālīkrama and Abhinavagupta :The Epistemological Ethos of a Tantric Tradition and Word-Index of the Tantraloka are his two latest publications. At the moment he is focused on re-editing Iśvarapratyabhijñāsutra-Vimarśinī-Vyākhyā, an hitherto unpublished commentary on Abhinavagupta’s Iśvarapratyabhijñā-Vimarśinī.

He was honoured with prestigious Sharda Samman and was twice facilitated by his Alma Mater, once in 2006 and then in the centenary year 2020, for his contribution to the University’s lived knowledge tradition of light and learning. At the moment he has been nominated by the Indian Council For Philosophical Research as its National Fellow for the year 2020-21 working on Pratyabhijñā Pramāṇa-darśana (meta-epistemology of Pratyabhijñā school).


Professor (Dr.) Ramakant Angiras

former Professor of Kalidas Chair & Head, Department of Sanskrit, Punjab University, Chandigarh

Dr. Ramakant Angiras is a distinguished scholar in the field of Sanskrit, with a vast experience and expertise in oriental and medieval knowledge systems, philosophy, and literature. He is presently serving as the President of Darshan Yoga Santhaan in Dalhousie, Himachal Pradesh.

Born on July 25, 1936, Dr. Angiras holds impressive qualifications, including a Shastri degree, M.A. in Hindi and Sanskrit, and a Ph.D. Throughout his career, he has made significant contributions to academia and Sanskrit education. He served as a Professor of Kalidas Chair in the Department of Sanskrit at Panjab University, Chandigarh, where he taught for 42 years. His dedication to teaching is evident through the guidance and supervision of numerous M.Phil. and 26 Ph.D. students.

Dr. Angiras's expertise has been recognized globally, and he has served as a visiting Professor at Charles University in Czechoslovakia. He also held the position of Fellow Editor at PHISPIC, Indian Council of Philosophical Research (MHRD) in New Delhi, and was a Fellow at the Research Institute of Himalayan Studies in Shimla. Moreover, he was a Fellow of the Senate at Punjab University, Chandigarh.

As a founder member of 'Saaraswatam,' an association of Sanskrit scholars in Chandigarh, Dr. Angiras has actively contributed to the promotion and preservation of Sanskrit language and culture. His knowledge and insights have been shared through lectures delivered at prestigious institutions such as Darshan Yoga Santhan in Jauve, South Italy, Oxford University in England, and Woodstock in the United States.

Dr. Angiras has published four noteworthy books that delve into subjects such as Shankar Vedanta, Tantra, etymology, and philosophical interpretation. His research papers, numbering more than 70, have been featured in esteemed research journals. Additionally, he has participated in and chaired academic sessions at national and international seminars and conferences held at various universities.

His contributions and scholarly achievements have garnered recognition and accolades. Dr. Angiras received the prestigious Veni Prasad Uppadhyaya Memorial Himotkarsh National Award in 1996-97. In 2008, he was honored with a cash award of Rs. One lakh by the Shankaracharya of Shri-matha of Banaras for his outstanding scholarship and contributions to Sanskrit art, literature, and philosophy. In 2015, he was bestowed with the Award of Recognition by the Chandigarh Sahitya Academy.

Dr. Ramakant Angiras possesses a profound understanding of Adavit Vedanta, Kashmir Shaivism, and the Bhakti tradition. His extensive knowledge, scholarly pursuits, and dedication to Sanskrit studies have made him a highly respected figure in the academic community.


Dr. Mark Dyczkowski

Senior Shaiva Scholar

Mark Dyczkowski was born in London in 1951. After finishing his schooling he came to India in 1969 where he began his saadhana and study of Sanskrit and sitar. In 1975 he returned to England and studied for a Doctorate at the University of Oxford. He completed that in 1979 and his thesis was published as the Doctrine of Vibration. In 1976 he went to Kashmir and received initiation from Swami Laksmanjoo. He is also the disciple of Oxford Professor Sanderson, Pt. Chakravarty and Vrajavallabh Dvivedi former head of Yoga Tantra department in Sampurnananda Sanskrit University. He worked on a project for the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts for twenty years up to 2007 to make an edition and extensively annotated translation in fourteen volumes of a section of the Manthaanabhairava Tantra. He is the author of several other books and numerous articles. His latest publication is an extensively annotated translation of Abhinavagupta’s Tantraaloka along with Jayaratha’s commentary. It is in thirteen volumes. Between 2007 and 2018, he planned and supervised the production of over 350 etexts of Tantric books and manuscripts of primary importance for Muktabodha’s online digital library. He has toured the world giving lectures at numerous Universities, guiding practice and playing sitar for decades.


Prof. Penna Madhusudan

D. Litt. (Hon), Vice Chancellor, Professor and Dean, Dept of Indian Philosophy, Kavikulaguru Kalidas Sanskrit University, Ramtek, Maharashtra.

Prof. Madhusudan has been awarded with Sahitya academy award for Mahakavya on Gulabrao maharaj. He has 45 books to his credit and has recently translated the Jnaneshwari of Sant Dnyaneshwar into 9000 Sanskrit verses. Prof. Penna has about 17 awards and honors. He was honoured with honorary D.Litt by National Sanskrit University, Tirupati, AP for his unique contribution in Indian Philosophy. The Tirumala peetham established by Bhagavad Ramanujacharya in the 10th century has conferred Shastraratnakara on him.


Shri Swastik Bannerjee

University Research Fellow, Department Of Philosophy University of Calcutta

Swastik Banerjee is currently pursuing a Doctoral degree in Philosophy at the esteemed Department of Philosophy, University of Calcutta. His academic journey has been supported by notable fellowships, including the University Research Fellowship from the University of Calcutta, the Ishwar Ashram Trust Fellowship, and the Kashmir Saiva Institute Fellowship. During his Master's degree in Philosophy at the University of Madras, Swastik Banerjee attained the top position in his program. This period provided him with a unique opportunity to study Vedanta under the esteemed guidance of scholars including Mahamahopadhyay Mani Dravid Shastri, Swami Paramananda Bharati, Prof. John Grimes, Prof. Godabarisha Mishra, and others. Swastik Banerjee has also received invaluable guidance and training in the Trika tradition from notable scholars and practitioners such as the late Prof. Debabrata Sen Sharma, Prof. Navjivan Rastogi, Pundit Pran Nath Kaul, Lawrence Small, Giriratna Mishra, and many more. His research focuses on Trika philosophy, popularly known as Kashmir Shaivism, exploring the non-dual nature of reality and the path to self-realization. His dedication extends beyond academic pursuits. He is a devoted practitioner of the Kaula Tantric path, having received Purnadeeksha in Sri Vidya and holding the Krama Deeksha from Kali Kula. Guided by experts, he continues to delve into the esoteric and occult systems of both Eastern and Western traditions. He has presented his research at various state, national, and international conferences, including esteemed platforms like IIAS Shimla, Jadavpur University, ICPR, Benaras Hindu University, and so on. Additionally, he has shared his insights through public lectures on philosophy and spirituality. Demonstrating his creativity, He has written scripts for dance productions, including the notable work "Cidānandavilāsa: recognition of the divinity within," which received a production grant from the Ministry of Culture, Government of India. Despite having received an offer to pursue a D.Phil in Theology at the prestigious University of Oxford, fate led had other plans for him. Being in Bengal, coupled with his immersive travels and interactions with esteemed gurus and mahatmas, has provided him valuable insights into the realms of esoteric knowledge and spirituality. These experiences continue to shape his profound understanding in these domains which he seeks to develop further.


Shri George Barselaar

Scholar, Author

George Robert Barselaar was born in 1951 in the south of Holland. He later grew up in Sydney, Australia, where he pursued his studies in Civil Engineering. At the age of 18 in 1969, George developed a strong interest in Yoga, leading him to delve into the practice of Transcendental Meditation (TM). In 1974, he completed the Teacher Training Program in Transcendental Meditation under the guidance of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the founder of TM.

George's spiritual journey continued as he embarked on studying Vedic Science and Sanskrit at Newcastle University in 1975. In 1980, he traveled to India and had the opportunity to learn the Science of Ayurveda from renowned Ayurvedic experts such as Dr. Brihaspati Triguna and Dr. Bhagavan Das Kashyap. During his time in India, George also had the privilege of meeting notable saints and spiritual figures, including Shri Anandamoyi Maa, Devraha Baba, the Shankarācarya of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham - Sri Chandrashekarendra Saraswati Swamigal, and an unidentified yogi/saint from Gangotri.

In 1982, George's interest shifted towards Kashmiri Shaiva Philosophy after studying Vasugupta's rendition of the Shiva Sutras. He traveled to Kashmir to study under the guidance of Swami Lakshmanjoo, the last living master of Kashmir's oral tradition. George considered himself fortunate to be accepted as a student by Swamiji, and he continued his studies and maintained a close association until Swami Lakshmanjoo's passing in 1991.

During his time with Swami Lakshmanjoo, George actively participated in transcribing and preserving the master's teachings. He was given permission by Swamiji in 1988 to transcribe all of his previously recorded lectures, a task that took nearly 20 years to complete. In the years following Swamiji's passing, George returned to Kashmir annually to deepen his understanding of Kashmir Shaivism, including the recitation of Sanskrit hymns and the various mantras associated with Shaiva rituals.

George's dedication to the study of Ayurveda also led him to complete a Diploma course in Marma Therapy in 2014 under the guidance of Dr. Sunil Joshi, founder of the Mrityunjaya Mission and presently the vice-Chancellor of the Uttarakhand Ayurvedic University.

Currently residing in Northern California, George, along with his partner Claudia Dose, devotes their time to the Universal Shaiva Fellowship and Lakshmanjoo Academy. Their work involves publishing and disseminating Swami Lakshmanjoo's teachings, with the goal of translating his Kashmiri and Hindi teachings into English to make them accessible to English-speaking students interested in Kashmir Shaivism.

George's efforts, in accordance with Swamiji's wishes, have resulted in the publication of various texts, both in English and other languages, including "Kashmir Shaivism, The Secret Supreme," "Self Realization in Kashmir Shaivism, the Oral Teachings of Swami Lakshmanjoo," "Vasugupta's Shiva Sutras Vimarshini," and "The Vijnana Bhairava Tantra," among others.

Through his ongoing dedication to preserving and sharing Swami Lakshmanjoo's teachings, George aims to ensure that the wisdom of Kashmir Shaivism is accessible to sincere students worldwide.


Dr. Chaman Lal Raina

Fellow, Center of Spirituality, Florida International University

Dr. Chaman Lal Raina, born in 1940 in Srinagar, Kashmir, is a respected scholar and Fellow at the Center of Spirituality at Florida International University. He has made significant contributions in the field of Sanskrit studies and religious studies.

With a strong educational background, Dr. Raina is a Sanskrit graduate with Honors in Urdu, Masters degrees in English and Hindi, and conducted research on "Kashmir Shaiva Darshan Aur Lalleshwari" for his Research Methodology Course at the University of Kashmir. He later completed his Ph.D. on the philosophy of Sri Aurobindo and Iqbal from Kashmir University.

Prior to his position at FIU in the USA, Dr. Raina taught Research Methodology Courses at the Iqbal Institute, University of Kashmir, and contributed to the academic community as a faculty member at the Department of Religious Studies. His post-doctoral research focuses on the exploration and facets of Shakti Tattva, and his works have been published by prestigious institutions including the University of Kashmir, University of Rajasthan, Shree Somnath Sanskrit University in Gujarat, and Florida International University.

Dr. Raina has made significant contributions to the field through his annotations and translations. Notably, he has published an annotated and translated version of "Facets of Shri Chandi Nava Durga" and "Shri Lalita Sahasranama" in English. His annotations extend to the Jwala Sahasranama and Shri Sharika Sahasranama Nirupanam for the Bhagwan Gopinath Research Center in Delhi.

He has authored several books, including "Shri Rajni Sahasranama Nirupanam" and "Kashmir Shakta Darshanam" published by Somnath Sanskrit University and "Bhavani Sahasranam Nirupapanam Quintessence of Shakti Tattva and Sri Aurobindo" (published by Rajasthan University). Dr. Raina's research primarily focuses on Ka-Adi Vidya, Shakti Rahasya, and the quest and reflections of Shakti Tattva.

In addition to his scholarly pursuits, Dr. Raina expresses his artistic side through artwork based on Beeja Mantras and Agamic Shlokas. He is currently working on a publication centered on the Dasha Maha Vidya, which will be available in English in the near future.


Shri Giriratna Mishra

Scholar, Author

Giriratna Mishra is Gṛhastha Sādhaka who was born in Varanasi to Smt. Padma Mishra and Sri Raghavendra Mishra. He is B Tech in Electronics and Communications Engineering and started his career in IT&C sector which he gave up and currently he practices under the guidance of his able masters the famous Siddhas of World Avadhūta Bhagvāna Rama Jī and Śrī Svāmī Jī Mahārāja of Datia. 

He has also written books in the field of Tantra and those which are published are: श्रीबगलातत्त्वप्रकाशिका – २०२२; श्री Yoga Mañjūṣā – 2021 (English Translation); हठरत्नावली – 2020; Śrī Tantrāloka vol. – 2, 3 & 4 - 2020; Śābara Mantra Kośa (Encyclopaedia of Śābara Mantra) Vol. – 1&2 By: Dr Anupama & Giriratna Mishra – 2019; Śrī Tantrāloka vol. – 1 – 2018; Śrī Bagalātattva Prakāśikā - 2017; Śrī Mātr̥kācakra Viveka – 2016; Śrī Bhūtaḍāmara Tantra – 2015 and Śrī Kālī Tantra and Śrī Rudra Caṇḍī: – 2015 and Śrī Uḍḍīśa Tantra - 2015

Books Under Print: Srī Brahmāṇḍa Mahāpurāṇa – 2023 and Śrī Lalitopākhyānam – 2023 and श्रीमहालक्ष्मीपूजापद्धतिः – 2023.

The books on which he is working are: Further volumes of Śrī Tantrāloka

Writing hagiography on Śrī Manthāna Bhairava in Hindi – Working in collaboration with IGNCA, Min. of Culture, Govt. of India.

Public Discourses: He has given various discourses and lectures and its details are Speaker at Śrī Pītāmbarā Jayantī Vidvat Sabhā in April 2017, organised by Śrī Pītāmbarā Pīṭha, Datiā; Śrī Durgā Saptaśati mass Pravacana: at Shivpuri – Madhya Pradesh in 2015; Spoke on “Tāntrika views of Gosvāmī Tulasīdāsa Jī” on the occasion of Tulasī Jayantī - 2015 at Chinmaya Mission Foundation, New Delhi. Śrī Durgā Saptaśati Pravacana on Uttama Caritra at Ramaṇa Maharṣī Āśrama, New Delhi in 2015. Śrī Durgā Saptaśati Pravacana at Jungapura – New Delhi in 2015. These mass pravacanas comprised of secrets of Śrī Devī Mahātamya as per the Trika Darśana. 

Online Courses: Online lecture on Basic Introduction to Tantra organized by Bharat Adhyayan Kendra, University of Gujrat, Ahmedabad, Gujrat; Conducted fifteen days online Program – Basic Introduction to Tantra for CIS, Indus University, Gujrat

Presented papers: गुरु-तत्त्व और गुरु-पादुका – in International Conference “Shakta Guru Tradition of India” Organized by Sri Peetambara Peeth, Datia and CIS, Indus University, Ahmedabad Gujrat on 16th and 17th Oct’22; काश्मीरीयशैवाद्वैतमत में श्रीक्रमकालीसाधना – Organized by Indic Institute; “Śrī Bagalāmukhītattvanirūpaṇam” in National Seminar “Shakti Worship in India”, organised by Amrita Darshanam and IGNCA at Amrita Vishvavidyapeetham Kollam on 21st – 23rd Sept’2018 and “Subtle Trika in Veda and Śrī Tantrāloka” in International Seminar on “Millennium celebrations of Kāśmīrīya Mahāmaheśvara Ācārya Abhinavagupta”, organised by IGNCA New Delhi on 15th – 17th Dec’2016.

Invited Speaker: Puruṣa and Prakr̥ti in Paramādvaita Mata organized by Krishnamacharya Yoga Institute, Chennai 

Invited Speaker (Online): An Introduction to Śrī Tantraloka organized by Numinous Wishes; मातृका, मालिनी और मन्त्र by Giriratna Mishra and Dr Anand Venkatraman organized by Sangam Talks; शिवदृष्टि on the occasion of  Acharya Somananda Jayanti organized by Ishwar Ashram Trust, Srinagar शिव, शिवा और तन्त्र organized by Sangam Talks Hindi; Beyond Grammar: Esoteric Neuroscience of Sanskrit Alphabet Giriratna Mishra & Dr Anand Venkatraman organized by Centre of Indic Studies, Indus University; Ancient Roots of Śrī Lalitā Sādhanā organized on the occasion of Śrī Lalitā Jayantī organized by Rise of Shiva;  Kaula Jñāna Nirdaśanam organized by Rise of Shiva;  शाक्तगुरु परंपरा on the occasion of Guru Purnima organized by IGNCA; Śrī Bagalāmukhī Tattva Nirūpaṇam organized by Rise of Shiva; काश्मीरीय शैवाद्वयवाद का सार्वभौमिक इतिहास on the occasion of Acharya Abhinavagupta Jayanti organized by Harayana Granth Academy; श्रीक्रमकालीनय on the occasion of Ācārya Abhinavagupta Jayantī organized by Ishwar Ashram Trust on 20th June’21; कामकला विलास – श्रीविद्या साधना on the occasion of Śrī Lalitā Jayantī at Himalayan Heritage Foundation, Srinagar, J&K; त्रिकशाब्दबोधमीमांसाव्याख्यानम् on the occasion of Svāmī Rāma Jayantī on 5thJan’21 at Ishwar Ashram Trust, Srinagar, J&K.  

He is the Recipient of various Awards presented by state and others.


Dr. Sunthar Visuvalingam

Scholar, Author

Sunthar Visuvalingam, born in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, of Sri Lankan Tamil ancestry, is an independent researcher on Indic traditions based in Chicago since 2001. His PhD thesis on “Abhinavagupta’s Conception of Humor: Its Resonances in Sanskrit Drama, Poetry, Hindu Mythology and Spiritual Praxis” (1984) was strongly recommended for a DLitt degree and earned him a personal commendation from the Vice-Chancellor of Banaras Hindu University. He was instrumental in inviting foreign specialists to participate in the international conference on Abhinavagupta at the BHU Musicology Dept. (1981) and remained actively involved in the subsequent IGNCA national conference there (1982).

He has collaborated throughout in his anthropologist-wife Dr. Elizabeth Chalier-Visuvalingam’s extensive fieldwork on the popular worship of Abhinava’s supreme tantric (Kaula) deity Bhairava in Banaras, Katmandu and elsewhere. Their paradigm of “transgressive sacrality” was the object of a three-panel pilot international conference at the South Asia Annual conference at the University of Wisconsin at Madison (1986). Among their joint-papers proposing an acculturation model of Indian religious history are “A Paradigm of Hindu-Buddhist Acculturation: Pacali Bhairab of Katmandu” (Evam, 2004), “Between Mecca and Banaras: An Acculturation Model of Hindu-Muslim Relations” (Islam and the Modern Age, 1993), “Bhairava in Banaras: Negotiating Sacred Space and Religious Identity” in Visualizing Space in Banaras (2006), and “Violence and the Other in Hinduism and Islam” (2015).

He has been guest-editing the collective volume Abhinavagupta: Reconsiderations (2006), which includes papers from the two BHU conferences and his comprehensive introductory overview “Towards an Integral Appreciation of Abhinavagupta’s Aesthetics of Rasa.” He contributed the chapter on “Hinduism: Aesthetics, Drama, Poetics” to the Oxford Handbook of Religion and the Arts (2014, ch.24). His talk on “Sādhāraṇīkaraṇa (generalization) in a Rasa aesthetics: Abhinavagupta’s centrality to Hindu self-understanding” (BORI, Pune, 2017)” is a rebuttal of Western attempts to debunk Sanskrit aesthetics. His publications—including “Abhinavagupta’s rasa-aesthetics and Bharata’s sacrificial theater: Humor and its semblance in ‘The Little Clay Cart’ (Mṛcchakaṭikā)” (talk at IGNCA, Delhi, Dec 2016) and “Carnival and Transgression in India: Towards a Global Spring?Bakhtin in India (2017), based on his keynote address at this international conference (Gandhinagar, 2013)—are inspired by the 10th C Kashmiri sage’s  constructive vision and way of thinking.

Since 2001 he has been hosting and animating the svAbhinava.org global website for collaborative multilingual publishing that aims to “contemporize Abhinavagupta” (abstract, IIAS, Simla, June 2021) by applying and extending  his insights, making them more accessible to non-specialists, otherwise deterred by the unnecessary jargon of academese.


Prof. Sthaneshwar Timalsina

Scholar, Author

Ācārya Dr. Sthaneshwar Timalsina from Nepal, was traditionally trained, consecrated with sarvādhikāra-sarvasāmrājya dīkṣā and authorized as Śaivācārya within Nepali Sarvāmnāya Order by his dīkṣā gurus: Prem Chetan, from Baglung (Nepal), and Śaṁkara Caitanya Bhāratī, from Kashmir. Khaptad Baba, also from Kashmir, was his Yoga guru. He was taught the Vedas, Nyāya, Mīmāṁsā, Vedānta, Śaiva Siddhānta, Trika, Mahārtha and other śāstras in Nepal and Varanasi, by the aforementioned teachers as well as others such as Tanka Prasad Timalsina, Vidyānath Upādhyāya, Rāmānanda Giri, Maheśānanda Giri, Ramji Malviya, Vraja Vallabha Dvivedi and Hemendra Nath Chakravarty.

He has also received academic and philological training in Mahendra Sanskrit University in Kathmandu and Sampurnananda Sanskrit University in Varanasi, as well as in Martin Luther University in Germany, where he acquired his PhD in Classical Indian Philosophy. He's currently Professor of Religious Studies in San Diego State University, USA.

He has long dedicated himself to the goal of preserving the traditions he inherited in a modern, institutionalized way. First by founding the Tantric department of Nepal Sanskrit University in Kathmandu, then by then by allowing the śāstric traditions to speak as subject in the global scenario through his academic works, and finally through founding Vimarsha Foundation with the goal of preserving classical śāstric and sādhanā training.