Tantric Psychology Personality Types and Siddha Medical Science
Dr.K.Loganathan, University Sains Malaysia, Malaysia.
1.0 Tolkappiyam and The Beginnings of Tantrism
By Tantric Psychology we mean here the system of psychology that concentrates on the notion of Kundalini and the six AthAra cakras to explain the psychological phenomena. While it is prevalent throughout India and has been developed by the siddhas both in the North and South of India, its ancient origins with a hermeneutic orientation can be traced to Tolkappiyam, and the Sangkam cult of Murukan that developed the notions of ARu patai vItu and corresponding to that the six faced polycephalic archetype of Kandan. In Tolkappiyam the whole of human existence is divided into seven different ecological types with each in turn divided into aham and puRam i.e. the domestic and public. Of these the central five i.e. kuRinci, mullai, marutham, neythal and possibly pAlai are said to be archetypes dominated while the remaining two viz. kaikkiLai and perunthiNai are not so. The archetype dominated or induced forms of behaviour are said to be anpin ain thiNai, i.e. forms of behaviour where there is love and mutual understanding. The behaviours devoid of archetype regulation are either one sided or abnormal, forms of behaviour that are to be avoided as unsavoury.
The concept of thiNai as above gives birth to the notion of Mandala or patai vItu - regions of universe each with its own splendour and the Temple being a model of such regions of the cosmic world. True understanding develops only when a person travels to these cosmic regions and comprehends everthing there. Such a comprehension, according to Thirumuru-kARRuppatai, constitutes the real wealth and the hermeneutic journey taken towards this end is the genuine pilgrimage, the essence of religious life.
Now if there are such universes of understanding and that immense effort is needed to undertake this journey i.e. gain access to a particular universe, understand it fully and then without losing all the illuminations that have been gained, push further and access more of the hidden unvierses, clearly we can postulate psychological conditions for such accesses and inhabitations. There are psychical reflexes of such mandalas - structures that condition the access and existence in such cosmic realms. By the time of Thirumular ( ~ 6th or 7th cent A.D.) we have already the notion of AthAra cakras, also six in number, mUlAthAram, swatistAnam, maNipUrakam, anAkatham, visukti, and Akjna. Though Thirumular explains these structures or psychical ecologies in terms of mantric complexes and yantras, we do not find a clear linkage between the psychological processes that define human personalities, and cognitive access that a person has made towards the cakras and through that the universe of his hermeneutic understanding. However we see such a line of development in the later siddhas who were also medical doctors, the most notable among them being Pattinattar, Sivavakiyar, Agatiyar, Tatcinamurti, Subramaniyam, Pokar, Korakkar, Teraiyar and so forth.
The present study resuscitates this ancient tradition, a necesscity forced upon the author who started investigations into the structure of human behaviour through the use of ACCESS TECHNIQUES or TESTS such as New BAUM TEST and so forth. Without going into the details, it can be stated very briefly that ACCESS TESTS are a species of tests that like dreams, or metaphors help the investigator in exploring the unconscious of a person and thereby ascertain the factors that are there shaping his psychology without he being fully conscious of them.
2.0 The Cakras and The Psychotropisms
The most important of these factors happens to be deepseated and almost indestructible pulls of a kind that we term here psychotropisms - irresistable movements of the psyches that define their desires, interests, motivations, thirsts, wants, wishes and so forth. The cognitional realms - the objects of perception or structure of understanding is circumspectively defined by the forms and strength of these psychotropisms. The existential reflexes of these can be identified with what the psychologists call instincts but it must be mentioned here that psychotropisms are somewhat deeper and can be identified as the very spring boards of all human endeavours, efforts whether they result in social or individual actions or not. These deep seated cravings of a sort, are there in each individual the exact form of which determines his/her personality.
The above cakras are infact a certain configuration of these psychotropisms which are infact ordained by archetypes of various kind. Corresponding to these cakras we can now delineate the manifestational forms of these tropisms and through that determine what regions of the objective world have become accessible to an individual. This in turn helps us to understand what kind of a person he is and the types of human personalities that we come across the world.
What we have said above constitutes the essence of Tantric Psychology as is available in the literature of Tamil Siddhas, mentioned above. We can also see that this way of looking at human personalities is thoroughly HERMENEUTICAL, and we may say Depth Hermeneutic Semiotic to contrast it with the exegetical, literary, philosophic and such other forms of hermeneutics. A person's personality is determined by what realms of the objective world he understands, and this in turn is determined circumspectively by the actual forms of the various psychotropisms that infect him and which are subject only to the regulation of Archetypes. It must be mentioned here these archetypes in turn are regulated by the Highest Deity - the Paraparan - by the manipulations of two fundamental tatvas, the Bindhu and Natham. The Absolutely Transcendental Paraparan or Parasivan is the Mother Archetype when in conjunction with Bindhu; the Father Archetype when in conjunction with Natham. The Absolutely Transcendental Deity presents itself in a bewildering variety of male and female deities with each establishing a form of psychotropism that constitutes the personality essence of a person. The identification of these archetypes that are actively present in a person becomes the dominant objective of the Access Tests and techniques.
3.0 The Psychotropisms and Moral Sense
The fundamental pulls that are inflicted on the psyches by the primordial archetypes and such other elements of the Underworld of the human mind can be classified into four distinct types: serpernotropism(or numenotropism), charmenotropism, lumenotropism and giggotropism. These archetypically regulated movements of psyches, when realized as actions allow them to gain something that the Siddhas termed sitties, altogether eight in number. We shall go, however, somewhat deeper and look at them in terms of these primordial instinct-type movements and what are directly obtained thereby. What are obtained by the above tropisms are serpens, charmens, lumens and giggums respectively. We are rendering the Tantric Kundalini or Serpent Power as serpens; which splits into charmen that underlies the impulses towards fascination and lumens that brings about deeper understanding through illumination - i.e. lighting up realms of the universe still in the Darkness. The word `gig' is derived from Sumerian or Archaic Tamil, gig-ga meaning black, bitter and so forth, which is related to the Ta. Kai that also has similar meanings. The giggums are the pills of a dark poisonous stuff, the ANavam in Saiva Siddhanta or what we shall call giggosum, a stuff almost like the Black Hole of modern physics, a stuff that dissolves everything into nonentity and hence the primordial cause of death, and death-like processes. The effects of the flow of these serpens and so forth can be described as engracing, if serpens are gained, disgracing if giggums gained; enchanting if charmens gained, enlumening if lumens gained.
Overall the machinations of the unconscious processes or its dialectics are to make the psyches gravitate towards the engracing through the enchanting and enlumening and avoid the death bringing disgracing processes. It is at this level that the moral sense of all human beings can be given a depth psychological explanation of a deeply satisfying kind. All processes that are of the disgracing type, that lead to gaining the death inducing giggums are morally evil, the pAvam while all the others, particularly the engracing type are the morally right - the puNNiyam. This moral sense is infact an intuitive understanding of a person of his own unconscious. When he is trapped with the disgracing type of psychic activities, he is given to understand that such processes and actions issuing therefrom are morally evil, which he may or may not acknowledge. Similarly for the morally right.
The moral sense provides an intuitive understanding for the psyche that informs it whether it is progressing in the RIGHT direction or not, where the rightness is constituted by involvement with the engracing processes, being subjected to the pull of serpenotropism and through that gaining serpens - the pills of redeeming power that provide the psychical energy to sustain the journey, continue to exist and struggle by beating off Death.
4.0 The Existential Worlds
While the objective world is infinitely large, comprehended in terms of a variety of mandalas, the realms of the objective reality that in fact constitutes the GROUND of psychical Existence is the AthArathalam - The Existential-World, that portion of the universe that is the psyche's Hermeneutic domain - what it can understand and be at home with. The most central concept in Tantric Psychology is this notion of Existential Worlds, and the personality types of the human beings are related to these. These Worlds - altogether six in number with a hierarchical organization of a complex kind - defines what a person is , the being-states he can succeed in realizing as his own, as what he himself is.
All these existential worlds are constituted by the above psychotropisms, and the physical and psychical processes that are set into motion by these deepseated pulls. At this point it is necessary to explain the SIVA TATVAS - the transcendent realities that in fact constitute these existence founding existentiales. The serpenotropism is the magnetic pull exerted by Parasivan or Numinosum which contains within itself the promordial hermophrodictic MOTHER-FATHER archetype, the ANDROGYNE of Saivism. The function of this pull is to lead the psyches towards Nirvana - the dislodging from within itself the processes towards these tropisms and which is stimultaneously MUKTI - Being-absolutley-one-with Parasivan Himself. This gravitation towards MUKTI constitutes the overall meaning of existence - the End-in-Sight of these cosmic journeys through these existential worlds, that which constitutes the teleological meaning of an individual's history.
Now opposing this effort of Numinosum to pull all psyches unto Himself, is the pull of ANavam - the dark principle or Giggosum that manifests itself as giggotropism and which is instrumental for making Death and deathlike destructive proceses a reality in the world. The dialectics of these two opposing gravitations constitutes the life-and-death struggle of existence, which mythologies of various kinds disclose as the endless wars between Devas and Asuras; the satanic powers and the angelic elements of the heavens.
But the pull towards Mukti is sustained through hermeneutical processes - proceses that illuminate the psyches the existentiales of existence and the bliss that acrues in gravitating towards Mukti and the ignorance that envelops one if one fails to respond to this pull.
For providing these hermeneutic processes as intermediate to the end state of being that is mukti, we have the phenomenal reality - the existential worlds - as constituted by Bindhu and Natham. The Numinosum transforms itself into the MOTHER archetype through fusing with Pure Bindhu and into FATHER archetype through fusing with Pure Natham. The six existential worlds that constitute the cosmic journeys of the psyches come into being constituted by a bewildering variety of Bindhu and Natham related archetypes that are disclosed as the male and female imago in the Jungian sense. The function of these archetypes which are infact mantra-complexes is to redeem the psyches from falling into Death and sustain them in the journey towards Mukti by making life pleasant and at the same time illuminating.
The pull of the Bindhu constitutes the charmenotropism which we can identify with the Freudian pleasure seeking principle. The psychical movements in this direction - the enchanting processes - are the processes that in fact charm and enchant the psyches and through that prevent them from slipping into the disgracing processes that bring about self-destruction.
This is the positive aspect of the enchanting processes - the Bindu, the Moon principle of the alchemists that casts a spell, to speak in magical terms, and binds the individuals to existence thereby preventing the slip into death bringing processes. But understanding as such, a reflective grasp and thereby becoming conscious of it is also prevented by it. This constitutes the negative aspect of the enchanting processes - they throw the psyches into irrationality, frenzy, magic, superstition and blind fanaticism.
It is here that lumenotropision manifests itself ushering in the enlumening processes - reflecting, thinking, analysing, reasoning and all such processes that we understand as those that constitute the essence of human rationality. The human rationality is the manifestation of the enlumening processes that on the whole allow the individual gain LUMENS, the citsakti of Saiva Siddhanta, that transforms the mythical, magical and so forth into elements if conceptual consciousness, which in turn are articulable with scientific precision.
Thus the psyche moves in an axial form - from the enchanting to the enlumening and through that away from dis-gracing and more towards en-gracing. It is in this axial movement that the different existential worlds are inhabited, abandoned and moved on. And it is in this ascendance that the different human personalities are in fact forged.
5.0 Serpens and Sexuality
At this point, we must mention why the Tantric psychologists placed an extraordinary importance to the sexual life which sometimes degenerated into extremely bizarre and wanton practices, losing the genuine spirit with which sexuality was understood by the true Tantrists. We have noted that what allows psychic activity as such be it enchanting or enlumening are the serpens - pills of Kundalini that are transformed into charmens and lumens by other related processes. Now the primordial act that gains these serpens is the sexual act - the coitus within the framework of divinely instituted LOVE, is that act whereby both the male and female partners gain serpens and which are put to different uses by them. At the low level of development where the psychical attachment to physical body exists, the bodily sexual coitus becomes the primary means of gaining serpens.
However as the individual develops, the sexual union itself is internalized. Within the psychical realm itself coitus between the psyches and male and female archetypes takes place thereby releasing serpens, the psychical energy pills for the various psychical activities. When a person in thus able to self-generate the serpens, he becomes essentially a-sexual and hence ascetic. The ordinary love too becomes Divine Love such as that of Manikavasagar, Nammalvar, Sri Andal, Karaikkal Peyar, St. Theresa and so many others. The ectasies these persons experienced and their articulations of these in divinely exotic poetry has some resemblace to the human world. But it is also clear that the bliss they speak of is not the bliss of the human coitus but rather something deeper and more satisfying. Such a transformation of ordinary sexual bliss into a higher level divine bliss, constitutes according Thiruvunthiyar, a canonical text of Ssiva Siddhanta, an essential line of development in religious life. The ciRRinpam, the ordinary sexual bliss, becomes pErinbam - the divine bliss of immense satisfaction.
6.0 The Dialectics of Existence
The psychotropisms as outlined above and their active presence through the transformation of Kundalini, the primordial ingredient of Power, constitutes the existentiales as such. But these are not sufficient to explain the dialectics of the immense drama that is existence, Being-in-the-World as such, to use again an Heideggerian phrase, and the dynamics of liberating oneself from the grips of one existential world and entering another somewhat higher and more inclusive. The Siddha and Saiva literatures have developed three distinct notions to explain these dialectics and dynamics.
From the Sidha literature we have the magically tinged notion of Sittu viLaiyAttu - a magical play of the divine powers that a man can appropriate and employ for his own purposes. Such an understanding is the foundation of sorcery and witchcraft, primitive art forms that still lure many people throughout the world. However the more developed puranikas have coined the notion of `ThiruviLaiyAdal' - Sacred Games that we shall term Deep Games to understand the bewildering drama that is human life. This notion arose out of an intense study of mythologies and the noting of the presence of mythical elements, the play of archetypes in the natural including the human, a mode of understanding the events of life that goes back to the thiNai concept of Tolkappiyar. The dialectics of the existential worlds are constituted by Deep Games and this is said to be so on the basis of what we have called Transductive Perception, the vinjAnak kAtci, the kind of perception that discloses the unconscious in the phenomenal, in the ordinarily observable. The dialectics of existence is not irrational and simultaneously they are not the law-like mechanical processes studied by the physical sciences. They have their own logic and is the logic of Games, Deep Games and hence rule-bound. Existence is a play in which the players are played by these Deep Games without the players being informed that they are being played. The uninformedness of this fact is that which throws them into the state of being unconscious. As they migrate from the lower level existential worlds to the higher the density and scope of this unconsciousness is destroyed, this destruction constituting the essence of illumination, gaining in consciousness.
This concept of Deep Games is not sufficient to explain the Global dialectics of inhabiting a particular existential world, staying in it and experiencing an immense variety of things, liberating oneself from it and at that point entering another. What we have here is what we have called episodization process elsewhere, (K.Loganathan Mutharayam, 1992) as a process that Meykandar (13th cent) captured as antham-Ati, terminating-initiating in his celebrated SivajnAna BOtham. These concepts are related to the notion of panca-kritiyam, five fold episodization processes (seeK.Loganathan Mutharayan. 1987), that have been used by the leading Saiva Siddhanta philosophers - Thirumular, Meykandar, Sithambara Munivar and so forth - to explain the dialectics of the global processes at various levels. For example Sithambara Munivar attempts to explain the dialectics of the various psychical states of being - being alert, being asleep, being adreaming, being dreamless and so forth, what are termed the avaittai, in terms of these panca-krittiyams i.e instituting, (tORRam), sustaining (nilaiththal), annihilating (aziththal), presenting (aruLal) and hiding (maRaiththal), activities directly related to Parasivan Himself, who however remains absolutely Transcendental to all these.
To understand and make sense of the dialectics of Existential Worlds and thus the dramatic changes in the personality of a person, we have to use these concepts rather than that of Deep Games. The individuals are instituted in a particular existential world; inhabitation in it and being a person of a particular sort is sustained for a period of time, and then liberated from it by annihilation, then initiated or instituted into another possibly higher and more inclusive existential world. At the same time there is aruLal - enpresenting, because new existential worlds are made available to the psyche. There is hiding too, for the many other higher level worlds are not yet made avaiable and hence there is no release yet from being unconscious. The absense of the removal of unconscious in the psychic structure constitutes this hiding, or not disclosing, throwing the psyches into the Temporal Mode of Being.
7.0 Being and Time
The question of the meaning of Being and how it is related to the notion of Time has been a matter of intense philosophical investigations from ancient times. Aristotle, Kant, Hegel, Bergson, Heidegger are some of the Western philosophers noted for such investigations. In the Tantric tradition we are studying, it begins with Tolkappiyar's distinction between KuRippu kAlam and Terinilai kAlam, both derived from syntactic considerations of language structure. According to Tolkappiyar both these two forms of time consciousness underly the verbal structure of verb phrases and among these two the Kurippu kAlam is more fundamental. The terinilai kAlam here becomes the cuttu kAlam of Meykandar that accompanies cuttuNarvu, the spatio-temporally constituted objective consciousness. We may note here that the kurippu kAlam - the consciousness of time that arises from expectant or intentional states of being is similar to the notion of Temporality of Heidegger and the psychological time of Henri Bergson.
Temporality, a competence to cognise in terms of time concepts of various sorts, is something that can be transcended and the credit of pointing out this possibility belongs to Thirumular who articulates it in many places in his massive Thirumantiram. This possibility allows Meykandar to distinguish between two distinct forms of understanding - the temporical asat aRivu and the absolutely transcendental and atemporical sat aRivu. The Being that is the meaning of existence as whole is the being-state constituted by this atemporical sat, a notion we cannot grasp clearly unless we also grasp the essence of the global dialectics of the existential-worlds and the presence of panca-kritiyams there constituting its dyanmics, metaphorically captured by the notion of the eternal Dance of Siva, in the assembly of Tillai to the melodies created by Uma, his consort.
For the individuals suffering this global dialectics, there is a sense of direction constituted by a towards-which that is unfolded vaguely at first but more conspicuosly later by the structural dynamics of this global dialectics. That towards-which one is being urged on is understood as an End-in-Sight, an absolute state of Being beyond all that are currently being experienced, all experiences by their non-absolute transitory character pointing out the presence of this End, the terminus-absolutus, the meaning of everything, of all existential struggles. Thus re-emerges the ancient notion of Nirvana, absolving oneself of all phenomenal involvement, but now in the form of Mukti, Being- one-with-Siva, the GROUND of the global dialectics that urges on all the individuals towards higher and higher and more inclusive existential worlds and finally transcending even all these. The Being that is the meaning of existence as a whole, Being-Absolutely-one-with-Brahman, in a union of non-separateness, where the sense of individuality does not arise ever without however ceasing to be an individual. There is the individual without however any individuality. This has been termed SivOham pAvanai to distinguish it from similar Vedantic concepts where at the point of Mukti the individuals are said to vaporise and dissolve as Brahman. The possibility of Sivahood is the possibility that lies deep, deep down in the unconscious and the conscious appropriation of it in Mukti destroys only the unconscious and not the self-actualising entity.
This has immense relevance for the personality types that we are concerned in this essay. Each one of the existential-worlds afforded by this global dislectics, provides a range of experiences and states of consciousness. But every such state of consciousness has also as part of the psychical structure, unconsciousness as such. This unconsciousness, it should be noted is neither the Freudian unconscious that is derived from psychical activities of suppression and repression nor the Collective Unconscious of C.G.Jung that is derived from noting the presence of archetypes in human consciousness. The unconscious of Tantric psychologist is related to one of the fundamental existentiales - that constituted by giggotropism the primordial cause of which is ANavam - that which is as absolute as the Numinosum and which tends to do the opposite to what the Numinosum does ie. annihilation of everything that is in existence. It shows it presence in the phenomenon of death, and death-like processes as well as in the presence of Evil in man, his Fallenness from grace.
All existential-worlds are not free from the reigning influence of this giggosum, and Mukti being the only state where finally giggotropism is vanquished completely.
The reigning pull of giggosum, instals this unconscious as a fabric of the psychic structure and which hermeneutically discloses itself as IGNORANCE, absence of illumination, understanding. There comes to prevail an OPACITY in consciousness - there are things which resist the understanding of an individual by being opaque. This opaqueness is that which pushes the individuals towards various kinds of hermeneutic efforts or as Tolkappiyar would put it nUl uththi - hermeneutic efforts towards gaining illumination or understanding. The end of all these hermeneutic tasks is the dislodgement of this opacity through absolving from within itself the pulls of the Giggosum and gravitating towards and falling fully in the glow of Numinosum, the Parasivan.
A psyche such as this, hermeneutically speaking, does not have within itself any opacity and hence it becomes absolutely translucent, is in total consciousness or understanding of everything. This is the state of MUKTI, hermeneutically viewed, the being towards which the global dialectics governing the existential-worlds urge on every individual.
What is psychologically relevant here is that such an absolutely translucent individual is personalityless - he cannot be typed into this or that kind of person. He transends such psychological understanding.
With this we have identified the upper and lower bounds for personality studies. The totally ignorant, the individual completely dominated by the giggosum is totally opaque and hence has no personality to speak of, everything remaining a pure possibility. The completely translucent at the other end of it is also personalityless, not because the possibilities remain unmanifest but because everything has been manifested but now transcended. He escapes the conceptual network of personality types by going beyond it and becoming one with the Absolute itself.
Thus our psychological typifications of personalities is possible only for individuals in the intermediate levels, where they are subjected to the varying presence of the existence consituting existentiales that we have identified as the four different types of deep tropisms, the ground the different existential worlds.
8.0 The Existential Worlds and Personalities
A person acquires a personality, a character, an identity of his own when he enters a particular existential world and becomes a reflector of some elements there and simultaneously an indicator of the remaining higher existential worlds as lurking deep within his psyche as constituting his unconscious. We cannot explain the immensely complex fabrications of human personalities without an adequate understanding of these existential worlds and how they are constituted by the deep seated psychotropisms.
We shall now give a brief description of these worlds that we shall call simply W1, W2, W3, W4, W5 and W6. It should be noted that these worlds are genuine or authentic worlds where the processes, like the anpin ainthiNai of Tolkappiyar, are regulated by the divine archetypes. There are in addition to these, many preworlds that are inhabited by animals and animal-like beastly individuals. There are also many False Worlds that lead many individuals astray, leading them into false knowledge, empty satisfactions and vicarious pleasures. The movement of understanding as conditioned by these genuine existential worlds is the WAY, the TAO as the Chinese philosophers would put it, or sanmArkkam as Thirumular would describe it. The sanmArkkam is nondogmatic; it is a way where hermeneutically founded growth of understanding is emphasized, where the highly dense opacity in understanding, the IGNORANCE or darkness in it is gradually dislodged and translucency or consciousness is installed. It is a movement of understanding through various kinds of practices and not a fanatical attachment to dogmas and doctrines, scriptures and creeds. The hermeneutical orientation demands OPENNESS and hence absolving itself of any dogmas, doctrines and so forth.
We have the different types of personalities, paththar or the devout; aRivar, the scientific; siththar the mystical; sivayOgi, the ascetic; sivajnAni - the gnostic and mouny the Deeply Silent. These are major types, with each having several sub-types, the number of sub-types decreasing as one progresses the ladder. The sub-types are generated by the unconscious pulls of the higher worlds that are present there as worlds as yet to be accessed. Except for the Mouny, the highest of all, the others have unconscious worlds and hence complexities of various kinds.
We shall take as an example the siththar, that for lack of appropriate term in English we have translated as the mystic. A more appropriate translation would perhaps be Depth Psychologist, or a genuine psychiatrist who is also a medical practisioner. For the siddhas of the Tamil country were in fact medical practioners who however practiced a medical system that was founded upon a species of Depth Psychology of the type we are describing in this paper. They were in addition to being scientifically oriented medical practioners, were also mystics in the sense that they were capable of what we have called Transductive Perception, a dinstinct capacity to SEE the normally unconscious, a form of vision that was called vinjAnak kAtci by the Saiva Siddhanta philosophers which is beyond the sense-perception (Ta-vAyir kAtci) and ordinary cognition (Ta. mAnatak kAtci). The capacity for Transductive Perception is what distinguishes the siddhas from the rest; they hit upon Truths hidden behind the phenomenal through developing the capacity for this kind of Depth Psychological perception that is akin to dreaming experience but considerably more advanced. They are capable of dream-like experiences while being awake, which in primitive circles emerges as trance or trance-like frenzies. The scientific transmutation of this primitive capacity and using that as a means for discovering the HIDDEN TRUTHS that remains covered up in the natural phenomena, constitutes their methodology. Such a methodology belongs to Hermeneutics as such, a methodology where understanding is developed through accessing hidden realities. A siddha is a person who is capable of a Depth Psychological Hermeneutics or Transductive Hermeneutics, a competency that is not available to ordinary individuals who however have a meagre manifestation of it in the capacity to dream and come to know something through that.
The capacity for Tranductive Perception is the very ancient notion of aRituyil kAtci - a notion associated with the archetype of NarAyana, and articulated way back even in the Sangkam classics. It is the world of manipUrakam, ruled by NarAyana and his consort Ilakumi, a transformation of the transcendental Ammaiappar, suitable to this World of transductive perception.
The psychotropisms of this world are conditioned by these ordaining archetypes and hence the ten fold avatars of Vishnu. The different personalities that are assumed by the siddhas are conditioned by the avatars of Vishnu: Krishna, Parthasarathy, Rama, Kalki, Vamana and so forth. For example one possessed by Parthasarathy, would be inclined to be a councellor, who through illuminating discourses would help many perplexed individuals, like Arjuna in Bagavat Gita, to attain clarity and thereby resume a life of active service. A siddha possesed by Kalki would be inclined to predict the future through SEEING ahead of what may acrue to an individual if he persists through the present course of action, through straining his capacity for Transductive Perception in this direction. Similarly for the others. We shall not elaborate the details here as we have already done it elsewhere (see, thiru NeRith thelivu, by K.Loganathan, 1997, to be published in this Home Page later).
What is important here is that while the world of ManipUrakam i.e. W3, is an experiential reality, that which conditions their Existence, the anAkatam so forth remain unconscious, the yet to be accessed. Simultaneously at this point, W1 i.e. mUlAthAram, and W2, swathistAnam, the worlds ordained by Vinayaka and Brahma with appropriate consorts are instituted as already accessed, already inhabited and transcended. The phenomena as conditioned by these archetypes remain in the understanding of the siddhas as elements of consciousness, what they have understood and retained as what they already know, i.e. as knowledge. They understand fully well the essences of W1 and W2 and hence their contents are transparent to them. Their understanding is not OPAQUE with regard to these worlds, but on the contrary translucent. In other words the experiential contents of W1 and W2 are not alien to them, the alienness having been destroyed through experiential acquintance, familiarization conscientization and so forth.
The elements of W3, their existential world, remain their concern, care and desire. Their interests are strained in the direction of understanding what is afforded by transductive perception, the realms of Deep Games, the elements that is the stuff of puranas, dreams and similar sorts of phenomena. Such disclosures are what interests them, where they discharge the psychic energies. The psychotropisms are conditioned by the new horizon that is opened up by the onset of tranductive perceptual capacities.
As they move upwards in this world, the contents of W4 and higher thrust themselves as elements of their Unconscious, sometimes attended to and sometimes not. Such intrusions from the underground may remain enigmatic, incomprehensible, vain, unreal, unnecessary and so forth just as the world of dreams may be so for individuals in W2 given over to intellectual pursuits of a strictly rational kind.
We can draw a chart to have a comprehensive view of all the different types of normal personalities that we can come across in the world. The bulk of individuals will belong to W1, with a small number among them ascending to W2 and a further small number accessing W3 and so forth. The higher we go, lesser the number of individuals, with those entering W5 and W6 being very rare indeed.
We see in this veiw of personalities, not only a universally applicable theory of a sort but also personality itself as something fluid. A person can change from being one sort of person to another; personality, in constrast to some Western psychologists is NOT a permanent trait but rather something that can change and change usually for better. A person assumes a personality when he enters an existential world, and this personality changes as he accesses existentially either higher realms of the same world or more dramatically accesses another higher world. It must be noted here that this process is not miraculous or irrational but rather something that is conditioned by the hermeneutical history of the individual. Unless he understands the world he exists, destroys the alienation, incomprehensibility and so forth through developing consciousness of them, gains them as elements of his conscious prehension he cannot succeed in accessing the higher existential worlds and hence effect meaningful changes in personality.
9.0 Normality and Abnormality
We have noted that Tantric psychology was developed right from the ancient days what in modern parlance would be termed as psychiatry or psychotherapy. As such it is inevitable that considerable attention has would have been paid to abnormal behaviour, how they originate and how to cure them. Many siddha treatises deal with this though, none of the texts that we have examined, give a description that is thorough and satisfactory by modern standards of scholarship. However we have already sketched the central core of the theory of personality as is available in numerous texts and on the basis of this we can develop a notion of abnormal behaviour and through that the essential function of psychotherapy as such.
The absolutely normal, from the point of view of the theory of personality we have sketched would be those who gravitate towards modes of existence as conditioned by these existential worlds. As it was observed, these existential states are governed by divine archetypes and hence felt by us as normal, the rightful and so forth. Such individuals even in W1 are aware, though in a dim manner the presence of archetypes and their subserviency to them. This understanding emerges as sensitivity to moral values of pAvam and puNNiyam, the morally right and evil and hence an inner regulator of behaviour in general. Each individual may interprete the morally right and wrong in different ways, conditioned by many historical, cultural and individually related circumstantial factors. But despite these differences, what is common to all of them is an openness and sensitivity to moral debates, ethical evaluations of the actions of self and others. It is this sensitivity above all others that makes them a social being, capable of communicating and interacting meaningfully with others.
These existential worlds have a sense of direction of their own. As we exist in them and move ahead in that direction, the personaltiy changes in the direction of the mouny, the speechless, or the Deeply Silent. Such a state of Being is what we have termed Mukti, being-one-with-the-Absolute, the state of Being above which nothing else is even conceivable and hence Being as such, that towards which the whole of existence is moving irresistably.
Now at this point it becomes necessary to distinguish between two different types of normalities - the authentic and inauthentic. The authentic are what we have described above. The inauthentic are people who deviate from the above and exist as individuals without any communicative breakdowns in their social intercourse. In fact in the real world, the authentically normal are few, the bulk of people being authentically abnormal.
In addition to the above authentic existential worlds that are founded upon the notion of Mukti, or Nirvana, there are false existential worlds, which are not founded upon a genuine notion of Mukti. Such false existential worlds are the worlds that are the products, as Kannudaya Vallalar (14th cent) would put it, of taRpOtham, imaginative constructions arising through self-conceit. Grandiose schemes are built, fantastic worlds are created, imagination is let loose to exult in the impossible and so forth. The intellect believes in itself, in its own capacity to ascertain and conquer ignorance. It creates worlds of its own, shuts itself inside it refusing others through setting its own rules of right and wrong, good and bad, truth and falsity. These are the castles in the air, which Siva as Rudra destroys even if they are made of strong metals. Such individuals are not phenomenological-hermeneutical in their quest, which requires a submissive humility and a recognition that in the unconscious lurks the powerful archetypes who play us in the drama of life as the play plays the players in the game theater.
Now as distinct from these inauthentic normal personalities, we have the abnormal who have, we can affirm, no existential worlds even of the inauthentic kind. Their existence suffers a breakdown because they dropout from being in the above types of existential worlds. The mentally abnormal, in Tantric psychology, is a psychically worldless individual, a dropout from the existential worlds of both kinds. They lack a world to exist and it is this fact that makes them break down. They are like individuals who have no grounds to stand on or ones the ground on which they stand is continuously unstable, that cracks down each time the foot is placed. The neurosis, melancholy, autism, maniac depression, schizophrenia and so forth are not personalities at all but rather the destruction of personalities of whatever kind.
Now how can such a state of being come to be? The psychoanalytic tradition of Freud and many others trace them to the presence of subconscious elements, elements that were once conscious but now pushed to the underground world of the subconscious through suppression and repression. On this view the cure would consist in removing this state of being of the individual, help the individual to regain the suppressed and depressed as elements of his own conciousness, through facing them as usch. Such a view of the origins of the abnormality leads to an over emphasize of the events of the childhood. Every adult abnormality is somewhat traced to some events in childhood, particularly early childhood where the unconscious manifests itself without the control of the Ego or Super Ego.
However in Tantric Psychology we have somewhat a different explanation of the origins of abnormality. The abnormal individual is a worldless individual, an individual who has lost his psychical world of Existence even of the inauthentic kind. If that is so, the pertinent question to ask now is: what makes a person lose his existential world?
The events in the existential worlds, including the inauthentic are shaped by the psychotropisms, as already pointed out. Among these that which is pertinent here is the giggotropism, an irresistable pull exerted on the psyches by the Giggosum that stands opposed to the divine Numinosum.
A psyche that gravitates in this direction gains giggums, dark pills of pains and guilt, a gain that is disclosed to the psyche that what it is doing is an evil, something morally objectionable. A person who persists in such activities despite the warnings that emerge as the call of conscience, gains more and more of these giggums, moves closer and closer to the Giggosum and simultaneously further and further away from Numinosum. In this movement there comes a point where through the excess of giggums gained, the existential world itself is alienated, destroyed. And in this way the person is made incapable of any rational action whatsoever. The person in thrown out as unfit to exist as an active member of society.
While the notion of moral conflict is a common-element in both Freudian psychology and Tantrism, the breakdown in behaviour is not traced in Tantirism to suppression and repression but rather to the individual moving more and more into the grips of Giggosum, with utter disregard to the warnings that issue forth through the call of conscience. What results in mental breakdown is not some isolated morally objectionable acts in early childhood but rather the inability to overcome such immoral tendencies that already exist and persisting further and further in such activities. The giggotropic movements that manifest themselves in early childhood have not been recognised as such, understood as such and appropriate measures taken to wean away the psyche from such pulls. Continuous movements in that direction unchecked by hermeneutic efforts ultimately lead to the destruction of existential worlds and through that the person incapacitated to act rationally.
10.0 Mental and Physical Health and Siddha Medical System
A careful study of the genuine siddha medical treatises such as those of Teraiyar, Pokar, Korakkar, Agathiyar and so forth reveals that Siddha Medical System is a rigorous scientific discipline having as its theoretical foundation the system of Tantric Psychology that we have described above. The meaning of mental and physical health and the concept of true medicine are based upon the above system of psychology, particularly the notions of normality and abnormality described above.
The availability of existential worlds, the continuous presence of them in the psychical existence of the individuals constitute normality. The abnormal are people who have lost them and hence worldless, so to speak. From this understanding of normality issues forth the different therapeutic techniques most of which resemble the kind of ritual practices we see in all religious cults throughout the world. Such techniques, very elaborately described in terms of cariyai, kiriyai, yokam and njanam with many subcategories, the elaborate descriptions of which are available in many Saiva Agamas, and books in Tamil such as Tattuva Prakasam and so forth are termed pUjAvithi or diksa in the Siddha literature. Since it is falling a victim to the destructive pulls of Giggosum that's the real cause of the mental disorder, the breakdown in communicative behaviour, pulling them back into normality would consist in restoring an existential world for them to be, to live, to exist even of the false kind. This requires pulling them back towards Numinosum, making the serpenotropism a strong impulse in their psychical life. The rituals as the language of archetypes, activities in which they are present in some form or other, then becomes enormously important in this restoration process.
As these are practised repetitively, the archetypes are made to be present in the unconscious. When their presence is sufficiently strong, a world comes to be as their psychical ground and the individuals become normal again.
If this is mental health, the notion of physical health, physical wellbeing is explained rather differently. This has been the central question in siddha medical system from very ancient times, the roots of which can be traced to the Sumerian period of archaic Tamil where numerous incantations have been rediscovered. From very primitive exorcistic practices, siddha medical system has evolved into a scientific discipline of an impressive kind, distinctive even by modern standards. It also holds the possibility of evolving further as the true medical system of the future in view of the predominantly physicalistic orientation of the Western Medical System the effectiveness of which is now becoming increasingly more questionable.
While mental health is restored through re-establishing a psychical world, even of the false kind, for the individual to exist, the physical health is ensured, however only if the person is restored to existence in the authentic existential worlds of W1, W2 and so forth i.e. worlds which are governed by the divine archetypes. Existence in the world of archetypes - thinking, feeling, acting and so forth, in such worlds - maintains physical health. Further progress in this world, ascending from the lower to the higher recovers youthfulness and vitality so that not only a person can live for long, but also live like a valiant youth, full of vitality and energy. For in these worlds is available the exhilir of life - the ambroisia of eternal youthfulness, the amuthu of longevity - the stuff that has been the search of the alchemists throughout the world and which became the starting point for the chemical, biological and other sciences. However the credit of unearthing the secrets and articulating the genuine meaning of amuthu, belongs to the Tamil Siddhas, who very daringly explored the world of the unconscious undaunted by dogmas, philosophic and religious prejudices that have hampered the rest of the world in unfolding the true meaning of ambroisia. Even in the siddha tradition, wanton and mistaken claims are abundant. But after weeding out these poor imitators and studying carefully the authentic treatises, the truth emerges with an impressive clarity that even the most critical rational mind would appreciate. Among a few such texts, 'ParipUraNam' of one Agathiyar stands out as outstanding. From the study of this text and a few others, it becomes clear that the ambroisia of eternal youthfulness is nothing else but the SERPENS, the energy pills of Kundalini, that is made available only to those individuals who exist in these archetype governed existential worlds of mUlAthAram and so forth, and which becomes available to them only when they move in the direction of Numinosum, the eternal and absolutely transcendental Sivasakti, the primordial hermophrodictic Father-Mother Complex in eternal embrace.
In the lower existential worlds, individuals get it through love dominated sexual embrace, sexual coitus which is not lust motivated but that which results as a natural event in the course of genuine psychical union between a male and female. Both partners earn the flow of Kundalini, each however putting it to different uses consistent with their own biological and psychological make up. As they ascend in these existential worlds and thereby free themselves from their attachments to the body, such 'sexual' unions are internalised and emerge as divine ecstasies. As they ascend further and further, the union becomes with the Numinosum itself. The small but extremely instructive 'TukaLaru POtak KattaLai' (14th cent) and many other such texts expound in scientific terms the processes involved in this 'union' - described in terms of various stages of ascendance with each being associated with liberating oneself from the tatvas, said to be ninety six in number.
Without going into the details here, it can be mentioned that for the Tantric Psychologists, the criteria of truth is not anything logical or even irrefutablity such as that of Karl Popper, but rather something that ensures mental and physical health. And furthermore when a person lives truely, maintains existence in authenticity, he happens also to maintain youthfulness, eternal vitality. The TRUTH is that which ensures victory over Death.
We have to link up now this notion, with that of personality types we have noted. It is clear that only those who exist in these existential worlds have an authentic personality, a personality that OUGHT to be desired by all individuals. Individuals with such personalities are mentally and physically healthy and in that sense are normal. And furthermore as they ascent higher and acquire the higher personalities, they also become more youthful, enjoy immense mental and physical vitality - the higher they ascend the more youthful and virile they become. For example a Sivayogi called also Desikar in Tamil, is not just another personility but someone who is genuinely illustrious - radiating a impressive brilliance in their countenance itself. The term 'Desikar' is derived from Sk. Tejus, meaning brilliance.
He has a faultness bodily frame, excellent health and youthful intellectual capacities. He is provided an endless flow of Kundalini, the Serpent Power, that ensures that his bodily frame is kept strong and healthy through fighting away the endless assaults of Giggosum.
Though the search after the 'cAvAmaruntu' - the medicine that ensures escape from death - is an ancient one, different cultures have given different interpretations to it. In the Tamil tradition too it has been interpreted in terms of true existential philosophy such as that of ThirukkuRaL or in terms of various forms of Kundalini Yoga as in Thirumanthiram or in terms of Sivatthiyanam as in Saiva Agamas, but it is only in the Siddha medical treatises that it has been given either a medical interpretation or psychiatric interpretation or sometimes a combination of both. In the period from the 13th cent A.D. to about the 17th cent. A.D. where a galaxy of great siddhas rose in the Tamil country, it gets a very interesting interpretation to the point of becoming a distinct science, a science that is the presupposition of not only medicine, psychiatry but also religious and philosophic quests. It was called amutha kalaiknjnAnam or simply kalaiknjAnam and we have one Agathiyar even writing a massive book with that title.
This KalaiknjAnam is intimately related to the global dialectics that we have described earlier, a dialectics that is constituted by the Pancakritiyams of the Numinosum. The essence of this science consists in raising the Being of the self so that it becomes subjected to these five fold eternal activities and hence to the regulation of existence solely of the Numinosum itself. When religious practices are studied carefully and transmuted into a science, a hermeneutic science in fact, we seem to have this KalaiknjAnam, the science of life of youthfullness and immense vitality.
11.0 Empirical Evidences for Tantric Psychology
The scientific character of the siddha medical treatises is to be noted in terms of access techniques which link up with the ritual and yoga practises so numerous in the Indian cultural scene. There are various kinds of pujas, diksas, nittai's and samathies, most favoured however being vAciyoga, the purposeful control of the breathing proceses through the right and left nostrils. These practices may be related to the activation of the left and right hemispherical functions of the brain which was only vaguely understood and which to this day remains a field yet to be investigated more thoroughly. Among these techniques what is most lacking is a Test that would unearth the structure of the existential world of an individual and provide an objective means for establishing the reality of these worlds.
It is here that our researches using the Access Tests such as New Baum Test, Family Portrait Test and so forth fulfill an immense vacuum in this ancient tradition. These tests provide a means of bringing into the open, the contents of the historical understanding of a person and how it is shaped by the Unconscious factors particularly the archetypical forms. The emergence of archetypes that are quite easily recognisable as such in what we have called New Baum Test (N.B.T.) provides the empirical evidences for the objective reality of these elements that modern scientific temper would demand.
N.B.T. is not to be confused with many species of psychological tests that exist now including the projective type. For N.B.T. is concerned not simply with skills, speeds of mental activity, perceptual acumen, reaction times, response patterns and so forth but rather the persons UNDERSTANDING itself - how he has interpreted and appropriated what has happened to him, how he is doing so currently and how he projects into the future as the possibility for one self to BE and which remains yet to be realized. Understanding is historical as Heidegger, Gadamer, Dilthey and many other hermeneutic philosophers have painfully shown in the recent past and Access Tests have as their goal, accessing the form of such an understanding of an individual. As such, these tests are hermeneutically motivated and hence their distinctiveness and novelty.
The Understanding of a person determines his personality, and only through accessing this understanding that we can SEE the existential worlds that ground his personality. Such an understanding cannot be accessed by the vast range of psychological tests available to-day. They are not to be accessed also by the physiognomy of the individuals (camutrika latcanam), the astrological details of the birth of an individual, the physiological symptoms such as pulse beats, cranial structure, blood pressure, urine composition skin resistance and so forth. What can access the understanding of a person are TEXTS that are produced by the individual be it verbal or nonverbal. A TEXT produced by a person, for exmaple the discourse he shapes in an interaction, provides an access into his undertstanding provided we ANALYSE the texts appropriately. We have to apply a hermeneutical form of analysis of texts so that the modes-of-being of an individual as disclosed by the texts are accessed. These modes of Being of an individual are in fact the understanding he has and which determines his personality. (For details see K.Loganathan (1992).
However discourses that are verbal texts, are unsuitable for gaining access into the Unconscious. For though they exist as psychic promptings of a sort, by the time the individual verbalises them, bulk of them are censored by the activities of the ego. Only rarely do they protrude into verbal expressions in such phenomena as the slip of tongue and so forth that Freud has drawn our attention to. What we need is a test that would bring out the Unconscious without too much ensoring, something akin to the dream experience. It is here that picture drawing tests are useful as they are predominantly nonverbal and hold the possibility of disclosing the Unconscious in symbolic representations the meanings of which are unknown to the individual.
We chose on account of these reasons, the Tree Drawing Test, developed in the twenties in Germany and further developed by Prof. Kimio Yoshikawa and his associates in Japan for this purpose. The tree was chosen for a number of good reasons, one being that it has been an object of worship throughout the world and figures prominently in metaphors, mythologies, folktales and so forth, phenomena in which the Unconscious is accessed to varying degrees. Kitaro Nishida, one of the brilliant Japanese philosophers of the early 20th cent. has made the following observation on the role of trees in human understanding that explains the reason for choosing the Tree as the object to be drawn in this test. Thus he observes.
"A tree exists as an integration of branch, leaf, root and trunk which have their own distinct functions - a tree is not simply an aggregate of such elements. Also if the tree as a total integrated reality does not exist, then such things an branch, leaf and so forth are meaningless. The tree exists as an integrated totality that can also be differentiated into distinct elements without, however, suffering disintegration in the process. Then if a tree appears in the consciousness of an individual, it must be reflective of the manner in which the individual has integrated into a coherent wholeness the whole of objective existence".
There is then clearly a linkage between a tree that has been selected and the form in which it is retained in the mind of an individual and his understanding of existence as a whole.
The old BAUM Test had only one instruction - Draw a tree bearing fruits - to be applied once and if not sufficient then to be repeated many times. The New Baum Test was created by ourselves by modifying these instructions themselves so that a person's historical understanding - how he has understood his own past, understands the present and projects into the future - can be accessed. The instructions stand as follows:
A. Draw a tree bearing fruits
B. Draw a tree bearing fruits as realistic as you can
C. Draw a tree which is your own creation or design
D. Draw a tree that is imaginary, entirely different from the natural trees you see around.
Over the last ten years or so thousands of individuals have been studied and the rules of interpretations of these BAUMS - or drawings of fruit trees - are reasonably well established. The most outstanding discovery is that in quite a number of cases archetypes, yantras, mythological figures are so forth are disclosed particularly in BAUMS C and D.
For example in case 1, where an Indian female about 23 yrs of age is involved, we have in 'D' two different snakes in embrace disguished however as thorny plants. In case 2, also that of a young Indian girl deeply in love with a young man we have in D, the androgynous or haemophrodictic arthanarisvara archetype disguished again within forms of trees.
Case 3 involves a sikh punjabi young man, exercising immense self-control because strong parental objections to his proposal to marry a young woman of a different race and religion. In both C and D we have the unmistakeable yantra forms where the square-like geomentrical shapes - indicative of self-control- are dominant.
Case 4 discloses the presence of another element common in dreams and mythologies - the spear, trisUlam and so forth. In D we have such elements disclosing the aggressiveness arising out of repeated failures to win over a young woman. These BAUMS were drawn by a young man about 28 yrs of age and whose attempts to get married and settle down failed repeatedly. Case 5 involves a young girl, confused about her feelings towards a young man who did not respond to her advances. Her failure to win him over throws her into depression and confusion. Baum D drawn by her is almost like a sun - the inner radiance - a common theme in alchemy and Tantric Psychology. The meaning however is that she gains an illumination, begins to understand things better, more clearly and truly. This allows her also to overcome the melancholy and depression into which she was thrown.
In case 6 we have the emergence of Lingam, quite undisguished. This particular sample is that of a young woman about to fall in love deeply with a young man. It indicates the beginnings of serious thinking about the issue of marriage and hence looking for and being ready to accept a young man as a life partner. In should be mentioned that Lingams have been drawn, without realizing what they are by Malay and Chinese girls who are Muslims, Christians and Buddhists.
One of the most impressive discovery, germane to Tantric Psychology, is the disclosure of the presence of archetypes, yantras and several mythological elements in the psyches of the individuals and which are drawn mainly in C and D. What were elements that were accessed only in dreams and trance-like experiences that we have termed Transductive Perception, are accessed in N.B.T. quite easily. We do not have to wait for dreams and so forth for them to emerge. They are elements really there in the Unconscious or subconscious determining the exact forms of the psychotropisms and thereby determining their personalities. The N.B.T. has opened up the Unconscious as an active field of scientific investigations where large samples can be collected quite easily and statistical techniques can be applied in analysis.
The presence of yantras, archetypes and so forth and these elements correlating significantly with personality traits can be taken as evidence for the theory of personality Tantric Psychology upholds. It is not a theory in the scientistic sense but rather Theoria in the original greek sense - a deep understanding that emerges as the TRUTH about the phenomena that once we posses, we can understand better the numerous other cases whenever it occurs. The theoria equips the individual with a deep understanding in terms of which he can comprehend the numerous new happenings of a similar kind. It improves his competency to SEE so that he can see what ordinary individuals cannot see. It is this capacity that makes him a GURU and transform others as his SISYAS, a pedagogical structure so intrinsic to the whole of Tantric tradition. The theoria is that deep understanding of TRUTH that elevates an ordinary individual to the stature of a guru.
12.0 The Science of Interpretation
We have made only a scanty reference to the meanings of the different BAUMS drawn by the individuals. Each one of the BAUM can be interpreted in terms of the psychotropisms that are manisfested and the kinds behaviour that issues forth. The field is immensely complicated for the BAUMS are like metaphors where the conscious and unconscious meet, interact with each other producing the bizarre and unusual forms that we meet in this test.
In the course of Hermeneutic Analysis of discourses and Texts which are drawings such as the BAUMS of N.B.T. we have worked out the methodological principles and the logic specific to it. Since there are already several papers on it, we shall mention them here only briefly. (Further details in Mutharayan K.L. 1992).
a) In the science of interpretation of BAUMS we have three distinct types of analysis: Global Structural, Local Structural and Sequential. In the Global analysis we look into the BAUMS as a whole, whether centralized displaced, shrunk, part enlarged and so forth. In Local analysis we look at the details of structure - the presence of fruits, flowers, leaves; the deletion of such elements, the cutting of branches, the exposure of roots, the presence extraneous elements and so forth. In these we also note whether they are yantras, archetypes, mythological elements and so froth. The sequential analysis involves looking at the historical development, interrelationships between the four BAUMS, how they are linked, how one conditions the emergence of another and so forth. Such analysis is not yet getting at the meanings out but rather becoming familiar in an objective and intimate kind of manner with the BAUMS themselves. It has been found that Baum A and B relate to the historical past, C the current and D the projections into the future.
b) It is only when we try to get at the meanings that we actually interprete the BAUMS. We mentioned earlier that the presence of Lingam in BAUMS means, the young women who draws it, is inclined to seek a male life partner, the emergence of pressures within to consider the possibility of getting married and so forth. The lingam is an archetype but its meaning is the observable and confirmable forms of behaviour such as these. In interpreting we translate the symbolic into conceptual and strictly behavioural elements. It is such manouvers that has made us term such a science a Hermeneutic Science since the central element is that of interpreting or translating. It should also be recognised that the end product of this translational movements are statements in conceptual language hence objective and verifiable as true or mistaken and so forth.
c) The interpretation considered here as translating from the symbolic into conceptual, brings along with it the notions of TEXT, as that which is interpreted and METATEXT, as that in which the interpretive understanding is articulated. The metatexts as such are secondary and it is these, that can be true or mistaken and hence the object of real scientific concern. It is the metatexts that may be idiosyncratic, prejudiced, biased, unfounded, fantastical and so forth. It is here that we have to establish principles that would provide universally acceptable criteria for acceptance or rejection.
d) It should also be mentioned that the processes of getting at the meanings of these symbolic elements, what forms of behaviour they actually initiate, is rather different from the processes involved in verifying the truth of the interpretations. The former involves various kinds accessing techniques, a field that has been investigated quite exhaustively in the Tantric tradition we are studying perhaps as nowhere else in the world. The latter however is better developed in the West and something that has to be incorporated into the traditional in order to transform it into a rigorous field of Scientific Investigations. The techniques of accessing which improves the competency to SEE and techniques of verification which helps to avoid mistakes in interpretation must both be brought together to generate the hermeneutic sciences, the sciences that would help us to understand human personalities properly and truly and through that establish the human sciences, particularly psychology, as a rigorous field scientific investigations.
Freud, Sigmund. The Interpretation of Dreams. Avon Books, New York, 1965
Hall, Calvin S. & Lindzey, Gardener. Theories of Personalities (2nd Ed.)
Heidegger, Martin. Being and Time. Basil Black Well, 1962.
Innis, Robert. E. (Ed.). Semiotics. Indiana Univ. Press, Bloomington, 1985.
a) Two Essays on Analytic Psychology. Col. Works, Vol. 7.
b) Psychology and Alchemy. Col. Works, Vol. 12.
Bollingen Foundation, 1968.
Langer, Susanne, K. Philosophy in a New Key. Mentor Books, 1942, 1951.
a)The Psychological System of Sithambara Munivar: A CriticaLl Study.
Journal of Inst. of Asian Studies. Vol. 5, No.1 1987.
b) Tolkappiyam and the Origins of Tantric and Agamic Psychology.
J.I.A.S. Vol. VIII. No. 1, Sept. 1990.
c) The Inner Radiance and the Growth of Tamil Mystic Literature.
J.I.A.S. Vol. XI, No. 2, March, 1994.
d) Hermeneutic Analysis of Discourse.
Int. school of Dravidian Linguistics, Kerala, India, 1992.
e) Arut Kural (In Tamil).
World Saiva Council, U.K. 1993.
f) Tiru Nerit Telivu (in Tamil)
forthcoming, World Saiva Council, U.K.
Neumann, Erich. The Great Mother. Bollingen Foundation, 1963.
Ortony, Andrew (Ed.) Metaphor and Thought. Cambridge Univ. Press, Cambridge, 1979.
Ricoeur, Paul. The Rule of Metaphor. Routledge & Kegan Paul, London, 1978.
Vernon, Philip. E. Personaltiy Assessment. Methuen & Co. Ltd, London, 1964.
Return to Front Page