[INDOLOGY] Explanation of "chāyāpuruṣa"

Nivedita Rout nivi71r at yahoo.co.in
Mon Oct 14 04:53:36 UTC 2013

Chaayaapuru.sa is a yogic concept, meditation and practice. "siva is visualised as "chaayaapuru.sa" by "saiva yogins to become master of living beings, to become "Siva himself, to become knower of past, present and future (Svarodaya tantra, 353-56). This Svarodaya tantra also describes the results, those depend upon the colors of chaayaapuru.sa that the "saiva yogin visualises in his meditation i.e. if one sees "Siva as dark in colour he should know his age is of mere 6 months, if it is yellow then disease comes. For detail see (Svarodaya, 357-61). Many verses of this Svarodayatantra is found in the Brahmayaamala tantra and it seems this tantra was a part of Brahamayaamalatantra as described by Narapati (12th century?) in his text "Jayacarayaa" on astrology.

The Ni"svaasottarasuutra also refers about chaayaapuru.sa as "siva and meditation upon him so it informs us about 4 types of dhyaanas such as tattvadhyaana, chaayaadhyaana, gho.sadhyaana & lak.syadhyaana. see 5.27.

The Kubjikaa tantra also referes to it in its kaalaprakara.na. 23.16-43. 

The 28th chapter of "Siva Puraa.na gives a complete description of this yogic mystic meditation and its results.

The earliest reference of chaayapuru.sa is in the Kau.satiki Upani.sad, 2.1.11-16.


On , Mrinal Kaul <mrinalkaul81 at gmail.com> wrote:
Dear Indologists,

I have been trying to find out the meaning of chāyāpuruṣa in the context of Tāntric texts. Monier Williams simply says 'Puruṣa in the form of a shadow' and Apte does not have it. How do I understand the expressions like chāyāpuruṣopadeśavidbhiḥ (Tantrāloka-viveka-3.5ab) or chāyāpuruṣopadeśapariśīlanena (Īśvarapratyabhijñā-vivṛti-vimarśinī, Vol.1, p. 159) or chāyāpuruṣaparīkṣāyāmityarthāt (Svacchandatantra-udyota 7.267)? Who are considered to be the learned people in the teachings of chāyāpuruṣa (chāyāpuruṣa-vid) ? I should be grateful if someone can guide me to the right sources or throw some light on chāyāpuruṣa. You can also write to me off-list.

Best wishes.

Mrinal Kaul

निराशीर्निर्ममो भूत्वा युध्यस्व विगतज्वरः।।
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