In the last 32 years, Professor Sanderson has given us 1,700 pages of traditionally published articles, plus more than 500 pages of online publications, all meticulously researched, and all covering Śaiva, Vaishnava, and Buddhist Tantra in South and Southeast Asia. A complete list follows, most recent first. Most items are downloadable as PDFs.
(available for download)
Śākta Procedures for Weather Control and other Supernatural Effects through Power over Nāgas: Gāruḍika Passages in the Jayadrathayāmala, Publication Date: Feb 11, 2015
Yoga in Śaivism: The Yoga Section of the Mṛgendratantra. An Annotated Translation of the Text with the Commentary of Bhaṭṭa Nārāyaṇakaṇṭha (Unpublished draft, 1999)
Śāradāmāhātmya: an anonymous text promoting pilgrimage to the temple of the goddess Śāradā in Kashmir, attributed to the Bhṛṅgīśasaṃhitā, edited from a manuscript in the Stein collection of the Bodleian Library, Oxford
An Inscription on the Pedestal of a Kashmirian Buddha Image
The Buddhist Śaṅkaranandana and His Supposed Conversion to or from Śaivism: Notes (2005) on Helmut Krasser’s ‘On the Dates and Works of Śaṅkaranandana’ (2002)
The Role of Textual Criticism in the Scientific Study of India’s Past. The first of three addresses concluding the Colloquium Les Sources et le Temps organized by the Centre d’Indologie of the EFEO, Pondicherry, 11–13 January, 1997.
An Outline of Brahmanism (ca. 900 C.E.). Lectures delivered in All Souls College in 1993.
(available for download)
The Niśvāsatattvasaṃhitā. The Earliest Surviving Śaiva Tantra. Volume 1. A Critical Edition & Annotated Translation of the Mūlasūtra, Uttarasūtra & Nayasūtra. Ed. Dominic Goodall in collaboration with Alexis Sanderson & Harunaga Isaacson with contributions of Nirajan Kafle, Diwakar Acarya & others (Collection Indologie 128, Early Tantra Series 1, Institut français d'Indologie / École française d’Extrême-Orient / Asien-Afrika-Institut, Universität Hamburg), 2015.
Śaiva Texts. Brill's Encyclopedia of Hinduism, vol. 6, pp. 10–42, 2014
This is the text of The Śaiva Literature (Sanderson 2014) with the extensive annotation and bibliographical information removed and a few minor consequent revisions.
The Śaiva Literature. Journal of Indological Studies (Kyoto), Nos. 24 & 25 (2012–2013), 2014, pp. 1–113.
This study is an analytic survey of the surviving religious literature of the Śaivas of India, predominantly prescriptive and predominantly in Sanskrit but also in regional languages, from the early centuries of the common era onwards, including the Śākta developments, with the primary aim of providing scholars with a chronologically ordered map of the main divisions of this literature, their interlocking religious contexts, and the regions in which the texts were composed where evidence is available. The survey takes in not only published works but also many texts at present accessible only in manuscripts, whose study during the last four decades by myself and others in tandem with the study of inscriptions and other non-prescriptive records is radically altering our understanding of the development, character, reach, and weight of the traditions that produced these texts. The survey is comprehensive to the extent that it covers all the major branches of the religion of which I have become aware during this period; but in the case of some of these branches, especially those that developed or continued to develop from the twelfth century down to the recent past, it has been feasible to mention only the major among the works that have reached us and, among minor and ancillary texts, such as anonymous ritual handbooks and devotional hymns, only some examples.
"The Impact of Inscriptions on the Interpretation of Early Śaiva Literature." Indo-Iranian Journal 56 (2013), pp. 211–244
"Śambhukṛpāmanoharastava of Rājānaka Ratnakaṇṭha", ed. Alexis Sanderson in Jürgen Hanneder, Stanislav Jager, and Alexis Sanderson, Ratnakaṇṭhas Stotras: Sūryastutirahasya, Ratnaśataka und Śambhukṛpāmanoharastava (Indologica Marpurgensia 5. München: Kirchheim Verlag, 2013), pp. 133–141.
"Ritual for Oneself and Ritual for Others." In: Ritual Dynamics and the Science of Ritual vol. II: Body, Performance, Agency, and Experience, edited by Angelos Chaniotis et. al. Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag, 2010.
"Kashmir". In: Brill's Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Volume One: Regions, Pilgrimage, Deities, edited by Knut A. Jacobsen. Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2009. Handbuch der Orientalistik. Zweite Abteilung, Indien, vol. 22, pp. 99–126. Note: this version has nearly forty 'sticky notes' which correct the errors in the text as published, errors introduced in the editorial process. The original version of the article as written is here: The Hinduism of Kashmir.
"The Śaiva Age: The Rise and Dominance of Śaivism during the Early Medieval Period." In: Genesis and Development of Tantrism,edited by Shingo Einoo. Tokyo: Institute of Oriental Culture, University of Tokyo, 2009. Institute of Oriental Culture Special Series, 23, pp. 41-350. A handout that outlines the 2005 lecture upon which this paper is based and sets forth the hypothesis is here.
“Atharvavedins in Tantric Territory: TheĀngirasakalpa Texts of the Oriya Paippalādins and their Connection with the Trika and the Kālīkula, with critical editions of the Parājapavidhi, the Parāmantravidhi, and the *Bhadrakālī-mantravidhiprakarana.” In: The Atharvaveda and its Paippalāda Śākhā: Historical and Philological Papers on a Vedic Tradition, edited by Arlo Griffiths and Annette Schmiedchen. Aachen: Shaker Verlag, 2007. Geisteskultur Indiens: Texte und Studien, 11, Indologica Halensis, pp. 195-311.
“The Śaiva Exegesis of Kashmir.” In:Mélanges tantriques à la mémoire d’Hélène Brunner / Tantric Studies in Memory of Hélène Brunner, edited by Dominic Goodall and André Padoux, Pondicherry: Institut français d'Indologie / École française d’Extrême-Orient, 2007. Collection Indologie 106, pp. 231–442 and (bibliography) pp. 551–582.
“The Date of Sadyojyotis and Brhaspati.” In Cracow Indological Studies 8 (2006), pp. 39–91. (Actual publication date 2007.)
“Swami Lakshman Joo and His Place in the Kashmirian Śaiva Tradition.” In:Samvidullāsah, edited by Bettina Bäumer and Sarla Kumar, New Delhi: D.K. Printworld, 2007, pp. 93–126.
“The Lākulas: New evidence of a system intermediate between Pāñcārthika Pāśupatism and Āgamic Śaivism.” Ramalinga Reddy Memorial Lectures, 1997. In: The Indian Philosophical Annual 24 (2006), pp. 143-217.
“Religion and the State: Śaiva Officiants in the Territory of the Brahmanical Royal Chaplain (with an appendix on the provenance and date of the Netratantra).” In: Indo-Iranian Journal 47 (2004), pp. 229-300. (Actual publication date: 2005.)
“A Commentary on the Opening Verses of the Tantrasāra of Abhinavagupta.” InSāmarasya: Studies in Indian Arts, Philosophy, and Interreligious Dialogue in Honour of Bettina Bäumer, ed. Sadananda Das and Ernst Fürlinger. New Delhi: D.K. Printworld (2005), pp.89-148.
“The Śaiva Religion Among the Khmers, Part I.” In: Bulletin de l'Ecole française d'Extrême-Orient, 90-91 (2003-2004), pp. 349-463.
“Remarks on the Text of the Kubjikāmatatantra.” In: Indo-Iranian Journal 45, (2002), pp. 1-24.
“History through Textual Criticism in the study of Śaivism, the Pañcarātra and the Buddhist Yoginītantras.” In: Les Sources et le temps. Sources and Time: A Colloquium, Pondicherry, 11-13 January 1997, edited by François Grimal. Publications du département d'Indologie 91. Pondicherry: Institut Français de Pondichéry/École Française d'Extrême-Orient (2001), pp. 1-47.
“Meaning in Tantric Ritual.” In Essais sur le Rituel III: Colloque du Centenaire de la Section des Sciences religieuses de l'École Pratique des Hautes Études, edited by A.-M. Blondeau and K. Schipper. Bibliothèque de l'École des Hautes Études, Sciences Religieuses, Volume CII. Louvain-Paris: Peeters (1995), pp. 15-95.
“Vajrayāna: Origin and Function.” In:Buddhism into the Year 2000. International Conference Proceedings, Bangkok and Los Angeles: Dhammakāya Foundation (1995), pp. 89-102.
“The Sarvāstivāda and its Critics: Anātmavāda and the Theory of Karma.” In:Buddhism into the Year 2000. International Conference Proceedings, Bangkok and Los Angeles: Dhammakāya Foundation (1995), pp. 33-48.
Conférences de M. Alexis Sanderson, Directeur d’études associé. In: Annuaire, Résumés des conférences et travaux, École pratique des Hautes Études, Ve Section—Sciences Religieuses, XCIX (1990–91), pp. 141–144. (Actual publication date: 1993.) A previously unpublished eight-page English summary of the lectures, which constitutes a good introduction to basic issues in the study of Śaivism.
“The Doctrine of the Mālinīvijayottaratantra.” In Ritual and Speculation in Early Tantrism. Studies in Honour of André Padoux, ed. T. Goudriaan. Albany: State University of New York Press (1992), pp. 281-312.
“The Visualization of the Deities of the Trika.” In L'Image Divine: Culte et Méditation dans l'Hindouisme, edited by A. Padoux. Paris: Éditions du Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (1990), pp. 31-88.
“Śaivism and the Tantric Traditions.” In The World's Religions, edited by S. Sutherland, L. Houlden, P. Clarke and F. Hardy. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul (1988), pp. 660-704. Reprinted in The World's Religions: The Religions of Asia, edited by F. Hardy. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul (1990), pp. 128-72.
“Śaivism in Kashmir.” In: The Encyclopedia of Religion, edited by Mircea Eliade. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company, volume 13 (1987), pp. 16–17.
“Trika Śaivism.” In: The Encyclopedia of Religion, edited by Mircea Eliade. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company, volume 13 (1987), pp. 15–16.
“Krama Śaivism.” In: The Encyclopedia of Religion, edited by Mircea Eliade. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company, volume 13 (1987), pp. 14–15.
“Abhinavagupta.” In: The Encyclopedia of Religion, edited by Mircea Eliade. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company, volume 1 (1987), pp.8–9.
“Mandala and Āgamic Identity in the Trika of Kashmir.” In Mantras et Diagrammes Rituelles dans l'Hindouisme, ed. Andre Padoux. Équipe no. 249 'L'hindouisme: textes, doctrines, pratiques.' Paris: Éditions du Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (1986), pp. 169-214.
“Purity and Power among the Brāhmans of Kashmir.” In The Category of the Person: Anthropology, Philosophy, History, eds. M. Carrithers, S. Collins and S. Lukes. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (1985), pp. 190-216.
Review of: Paul Eduardo Muller-Ortega, The Triadic Heart of Śiva: Kaula Tantricism in the Non-dual Shaivism of Kashmir, Albany: State University of New York Press, 1989. In: Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies 53 (1990), pp. 354–357.
Review of: N.R. Bhatt, Matangapārameśvarāgama (Kriyāpāda, Yogapāda et Caryāpāda), avec le commentaire de Bhatta Rāmakantha: Édition critique, Publications de l’Institut Français d’Indologie 65, Pondicherry, 1982; Idem: Rauravottarāgama: Édition critique, introduction et notes, Publications de l’Institut Français d’Indologie 66, Pondicherry, 1983. In: Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies 48 (1985), pp. 564–568.
Review of: Michel Hulin, Mrgendrāgama: sections de la doctrine et du yoga, avec la vrtti de Bhattanārāyana-kantha et la dīpikā d’Aghoraśivācārya. Traduction, introduction et notes, Publications de l’Institut Français d’Indologie 63, Pondicherry, 1980. In: Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies 46 (1983), pp. 161–162.
Review of: Lilian Silburn, Śivasūtra et Vimarśinī de K.semarāja. (Études sur le Śivaïsme du Cachemire, École Spanda.) Traduction et introduction, Publications de l’Institut de Civilisation Indienne 47, Paris, 1980. In: Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies 46 (1983), pp. 160–161.
Handouts from lectures
This section features handouts from Prof. Sanderson's lectures, which constitute very useful summaries of data, outlines of arguments, and citations from key primary sources.
The Jaina Appropriation and Adaptation of Śaiva Ritual: The Case of Pādliptasūri’s Nirvāṇakalikā. 15th Annual Jaina Lecture, SOAS, 19 March, 2015.
This lecture presents further evidence that the Jaina Pratiṣṭhāpaddhati Nirvāṇakalikā was redacted from the unpublished Saiddhāntika Śaiva Siddhāntasārapaddhati of Mahārājādhirāja Bhojadeva through a process of superficial substitution, e.g. jinājñayā for śivājñayā, the substitution of its own pantheon of worship and Mantras, deletion (by, for example, dropping the doctrinally intractable parts of its initiation ritual, e.g. adhvaśuddhiḥ, and the sections that cover sādhakābhiṣekaḥ and pavitrārohaṇam), and addition, an appendix setting out the iconography of its pantheon. This handout extends the evidence given in that of my 2011 lecture in Hamburg by presenting in parallel columns sections of he texts’ coverage of the rituals of image installation (bhūparīkṣā, pādapratiṣṭhā, and dvārapratiṣṭhā) and temple-animation (hṛtpratiṣṭhā).
How Public was Śaivism? Keynote Lecture of an International Symposium Tantric Communities in Context: Sacred Secrets and Public Rituals, Vienna Feb 5 2015
Progress since ‘Śaivism and the Tantric Traditions’ (Sanderson 1988). Keynote Address at the end of the Symposium Śaivism and the Tantric Traditions, University of Toronto, March 26–28, 2015.
This lecture reviews the principal respects in which I have modified, revised, and extended in the light of my further research during the past 27 years the picture of Śaivism that I presented in the study of 1988 that provided the title of this Symposium.
Pleasure and the Emotions in Tantric Śaiva Soteriology, 18 June 2013, University of Hamburg. 21-page handout.
Abhinavagupta on the Subjective Nature of Brahmanical Values: Śākta Fundamentalism Against the Absorption of Śaivism into ‘Hinduism’. 15 Jan 2013, University of Tokyo. 11-page handout.
'Rolling up One's Sleeves in the Archives: How a Non-Hierarchical Aproach to the Contents of Sanskrit Manuscript Collections Transforms Our Understanding of Indian Religion', 28 June 2012, CSMC, Hamburg
Śaivism and Brahmanism lecture series, February to March 2012, All Souls College, Oxford. 125 pages of handouts.
The Rise of the Goddess in Early Medieval India: Keynote address, Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies, Conference on Śākta traditions, 10 September 2011, Oxford.
Handout of ‘The Appropriation of Śaiva Sources and Models in the Production of Jain Ritual Paddhatis from the 10th to the 15th Century’, lecture, Abteilung für Kultur und Geschichte Indiens und Tibets, Asien-Afrika-Institut, University of Hamburg, 4 July 2011
The History of Hinduism in Kashmir: Lecture at the University of Hamburg, April 2010. 13-page handout.
The Influence of Śaivism on Pāla Buddhism: Lecture at the University of Toronto at Mississauga, February 2010. Nine-page handout.
Tantric Saivism and Caste: Lecture at the University of Vienna, June 2009. 12-page handout.
How Buddhist is the Herukābhidhānatantra?: Lecture at the University of Vienna, June 2009. Ten-page handout.
The Niśvāsatattvasamhitā and its Place in the History of Śaiva Literature: Lecture at the Second International Workshop on Early Tantra, January 2007. Eight-page handout.
Śaivism and Brāhmanism in the Early Medieval Period
Expanded version of a text delivered as the 14th Gonda Lecture on 24 November 2006. To be published by the Gonda Foundation.
Initiating the Monarch: Lecture at Jinbunken, Kyoto, September 2006. Seven-page handout.
The Proceedings of the International Conference on Esoteric Buddhist Studies, Kōyasan, September, 2006. Handout from the lecture here.
Did post-Atimargic Śaivism transform the Śaiva temple cult?:Negative evidence from 7th-century Cambodia and the earliest Pratisthatantras. Lecture at the University of Pennsylvania, February 2005. Six-page handout.
Initiating the Monarch: The Adaptation of a Śaiva Practice for the propagation of Esoteric Buddhism in India, Inner Asia, and the Far East. Lecture at the University of Tokyo, December 2004. Five-page handout.
The Yoga of Dying lecture series. October 12 – November 9, 2004, All Souls College, Oxford. 50 pages of handouts.
An Introduction to Śaivism: Lecture at the University of Kyoto, December 2004. Ten-page handout.
Was the ritual system of the Pāncarātrikas reconfigured along Śaiva lines? Evidence of the influence of middle-period Saiddhāntika Saivism on the earliest surviving Pāncarātrika Samhitās. Lecture at the Vienna Symposium, December 2003. 13-page handout.
The Earliest Surviving Śaiva Guides to Ritual: the unpublished paddhatis of Brahmaśambhu and Bhojadeva and the propagation of a standardized Saiddhāntika System. Lecture at the Round Table on South Asian Rituals, Heidelberg, November 2003.
Recordings of lectures
Progress since ‘Śaivism and the Tantric Traditions’ (Toronto)
How Public was Śaivism? (Vienna)
Pleasure and the Emotions in Tantric Śaiva Soteriology (Hamburg)
The Influence of Śaivism on Pāla Buddhism (Chicago)
"The understanding of Śaivism can only aspire to objectivity if it includes a sincere effort to see how things are in the subjective perception of its practitioners. One has to be able to enter into the spirit of their world, to be with them intimately, to see what they are saying and why they are saying it, to go beneath the surface of their texts. There has to be empathy." - from an interview with A.G.J.S. Sanderson (see quotes page)