kaivalyadhama researchers, after scrutiny of many Hathayoga text, have recognised five representative Hathayoga texts viz.Hathapradipika, Gheranda samhita, Goraksasatakam, siddhasiddhantapaddhati and siva samhita.
Siva Samhita, a text of unknown authorship, presents discussion on various topics. Besides describing Astangayoga with description of ten yamas and ten niyamas, it enumerates, with characteristice, the four types of sisyas and also four types of yoga, talks about mudra and kundalini, so also talks about cakras and effects of meditation upon them. It has also emphasized the importance of Mantra recitation. this is the text which has clearly declared that even a household can attain accomplishment through the practice of yoga
Our esteemed readers are very well aware that a Critical Edition of Siva Samhita (Hindi version) –along with its lucid translation, exhaustive informative introduction and analytical appendices on various topics –was published on the auspicious occasion of 75th anniversary of Kaivalyadhama in 1999 and it is a matter of immense joy and satisfaction in conveying that we have received overwhelming appreciative response from our Hindi knowing readers. Moreover, we were receiving constant requests for the English version of this edition of Siva Samhita from our English knowing readers and we are extremely happy that we could fulfill the demand- though little late- of our readers by presenting before them with improvised version of this text in English.
While translating the Sanskrit verses in English our readers are aware about the fact that we do not find appropriate terminology in English language which can convey the proper connotation of some of the Sanskrit yogic terms. Therefore, it was thought necessary to retain the original Sanskrit terms in the translation e.g. svayambhulinga, bindu, bija, akula etc. and lot of care has been taken to see that the English rendering is close to the Hindi version. It is interesting to note that coincidentally the members of the editorial board of both the Hindi and English Editions happen to be identical. We hope that present English version of Siva Samhita will prove to be pertinent in deciphering the traditional import of the text.
While presenting the subject matter we have given Sanskrit verses followed by their transliteration and translation. Although, we have not provided the Special Notes in the body of the text, however, this has been compensated by the exhaustive informative introduction and appendices in tabular form covering several concepts/practices.
Our thanks are due to the Ministry of H.R.D., Department of Education, Govt. of India, for its regular financial and moral support for the research works being carried out and for over all development of Kaivalyadhama.
This Preface will not be complete if we do not express our sincere gratitudes towards all the members of Kaivalyadhama Pariwar for their direct/indirect contribution towards this work. We would like to mention the name of Shri O.P. Tiwariji, Secretary, Kaivalyadhama S.M.Y.M. Samiti for his contribution and concern for the Department and Institute as a whole.
Shri Subodh Tiwari, Administrator, Kaivalyadhama, also deserves our deep appreciations without whose efforts in arranging funds for its publication the present work would not have seen light of the day.
The present work consists of computer works of various kinds such as Transliteration, Devanagari Script, etc. that require refined skill and attention and Shri P.H. Raut, who prepared the typescript of the present work deserves our thanks for the same.
We are also thankful for the prompt services provided by our Library staff-Mr. B.D. Kute and Mrs. A.S. Sinha.
Mr. Tanpure, Proprietor, Ace Enterprises, Pune, who has long standing experience in printing and long association with Kaivalyadhama, has utilized his expertise unsparingly towards the well-knit timely printing of the present work and hence our thanks are due to him.
Last but not least, we hope that our readers will provide –as they have done in the past –with their feedback, comments, criticisms etc. regarding the present work also so that their opinions and comments can be duly incorporated and also acknowledged by us in the next edition of this text.
On the necessity of Critical Edition of Siva Samhita
Usually the Critical Edition in Literary tradition has dual objectives
1. To present the original text having ascertained its authenticity and completeness on the basis of maximum MSS thereof; and
2. To present the contents of the original text before the readers in systematic and thoughtful manner.
Siva Samhita is not only a Sanskrit text but also is the practical text for yoga sadhana. For this reason the critical edition of Siva Samhita –from the view point of above stated objectives –was over-due since long.
The oldest available published edition of Siva Samhita with English translation has been edited by Raibahadur Sri sacandra Basu and published by Panini Office, Allahabad in 1914-15. Later on Oriental Book Corporation published its other editions. Apart from this there are other 2 editions published from two other places i.e. Mumbai and Barelly in the year 1952 and 1974 respectively are also available –details of which are provided at proper place. These later two publications are with Hindi translation. All these three publications have their own individuality and the publishers of this valuable text have greatly obliged the yoga practitioners and those desirous of knowing yoga. None the less the usefulness or significance of these earlier published editions is not at all diminished by this present publication. However, the ever growing popularity of yoga, the curiosity towards it, these earlier published editions do not fulfill the requirement of researchers. Following can be the grounds for this:
1. No mention of manuscripts on which published editions are based.
2. It can certainly be said that every one of the published Siva Samhita text is based on a single manuscript as there is no mention of any Variant Reading.
3. Sri Raibahadur Srisacandra Basu has given no place to Vajroli Mudra Varnana in his publication.
4. Both of its English and Hindi translations could not render the contents of the original text with clarity and correctness.
keeping in view the reasons mentioned above, a project plan as to the preparation and publication of critical edition of Siva Samhita had been worked out by the Philosophico-Literary Research Department of Kaivalyadhama S.M.Y.M. Samiti, Lonavla. The present critical edition fulfills both the objectives referred above. For its preparation three published books and thirteen MSS have been made use of –the detailed information of which is given at its proper place. The Variant reading that we have found in these MSS and published texts are presented carefully at the end of each chapter. If any researcher gets any MS which has not been incorporated here by us (owing to non –availability of information) and wants to work further can carry on their work with ease with the help of Variant readings.
The uniqueness of the proposed Critical Edition of Siva Samhita in comparison to published Siva Samhita:
1. In the Siva Samhit edited and translated into English by Raibahadur Srisacandra Basu-
a. The parts related with Vajroli, Sahajoli and Amaroli have not been considered worth publishing owing to the consideration that these are performed by lower class Tantrikas and are not in vogue and therefore these have been omitted from the original text.
b. The total number of verses have been reduced to 517 owing to the counting of one verse ranging from five to twelve lines.
c. From the point of view of translation although it is praise worthy as being a pioneering work but with regard to some verses there is want to clarity.
2. The other publications, though belong to two different places their source appears to be one and the same. Or else, the translator or publisher of the year 1974 edition seems to have accepted the Siva Samhita published in the year 1952 as the source of the original text.
3. From the view point of the translation and the language both, the Siva published in 1974, appears to be more proper when compared to the Siva Samhita published in the year 1952 but still it will be considered insufficient/incomplete from view point of making the import of the verses clear.
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