Shadows, Zombies, and Animated Weapons in Kashmirian Tantra

Guest lecture by David Gordon White, University of California, Santa Barbara.


The Netra Tantra, an early ninth-century text from Kashmir, contains a long chapter on demonology. In it, we find the sole mention in Hindu Tantric scriptures of the 'evil eye'.

The same chapter also contains long accounts of sorcery and counter-sorcery techniques involving zombies and animated weapons.

I will argue that many of these elements of Kashmirian demonology had their origins outside of the Indian subcontinent.