Friday, October 14, 2011

Trika - 01 - Introduction

Trika or Kashmiri Shaivism is a system of monism based on the Shivasutra attributed to Vasugupta. The name is derived from Trikashasana or Trikashastra.

Trika believes that pure consciousness is the spiritual substance of the Universe. It is a system of pure monism which postulates a single reality with two aspects, one Transcendental and the other Immanent. The former is unmanifest while the latter pervades the universes of the manifest universe.

As per Trika, consciousness eternally alternates between two phases, governed by the law of karma:
a. transcendental or period of potentiality (pralaya) during which all manifestations are dormant
b. immanent or active phase (srishti) which is a phase of manifestation

A cycle of Pralaya and Srishti, known as Kalpa is supposed to last 4.32 billion years.

As far as the nature of manifestation is concerned, Trika postulates that there is only reality  but that it has two aspects, hence the manifestation is real. Trika uses thirty-six categories to explain the process of cosmic evolution.

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