SOAS University of London

Department of Religions & Philosophies, School of History, Religions & Philosophies

Professor Peter Bisschop - Vedic elements in the Pāśupatasūtra

Professor Peter Bisschop (University of Leiden)

Date: 8 March 2016Time: 5:00 PM

Finishes: 8 March 2016Time: 6:30 PM

Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: B102

Type of Event: Seminar

Abstract The Pāśupatasūtra is the foundational text of the Pāśupatas, an early ascetic community of Rudra-Śiva worshippers. It represents one of the earliest documents of staunch Śaivism. The most notorious part of the sūtra concerns a passage where the ascetic is told to feign madness in order to attract censure from the public. In this seminar I will present new evidence that the source for this behaviour and its underlying practice can be traced in the Atharvaveda Paippalādasaṃhitā. I will also give a survey of other Vedic elements in the Pāśupatasūtra. From a broader perspective, the paper aims to contribute to a more detailed understanding of the relationship between early Hinduism and Vedism.   Biography
Peter Bisschop has been Professor of Sanskrit and Ancient Cultures of South Asia at Leiden University since 2010. He received his PhD from the University of Groningen in 2004 with a thesis entitled Early Śaivism and the Skandapurāṇa: Sects and Centres (published from Groningen in 2006). Before coming to Leiden, he was Junior Research Fellow at Wolfson College, Oxford (2004-5), and Lecturer in Sanskrit at the University of Edinburgh (2005-2010). His three latest publications are: ‘Pañcārtha Before Kauṇḍinya’, Journal of Indian Philosophy 42.1 (2014) 27–37; ‘Invoking the Powers that Be: The Śivadharma’s Mahāśānti Mantra’, South Asian Studies 30.2 (2014), 133–141; and (with Hans T. Bakker and Yuko Yokochi) The Skandapurāṇa. Volume IIB. Adhyāyas 31-52. The Vāhana and Naraka Cycles (Leiden, 2014).

Organiser: Peter Flügel

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