From Possession to Freedom: The Journey of Nili–Nilakeci
  • ISBN : 9789385932281
  • year : 2018
  • language : English
  • binding : Hardbound
$ 40.00
(Free Shipping Charges)
The Tamil text Nilakeci, published between the first and fifth centuries, deals with Jaina philosophy through the use of an unusual literary technique: retrieving a pey, or possessing spirit (usually a woman), from the folk tradition and casting it in a new image. Thus a demon becomes a philosopher, for example—and if that is possible, then anyone can transform themselves into someone new, a redeemed self, by following the Jaina tenets. This is a profoundly subversive idea within the tradition, as is the use in Nilakeci of a female persona to debate with the most prominent teachers, all but one of them male, from the various schools of thought prevalent at the time. This book places Nilakeci within a historical context while nonetheless maintaining its status as a singular, radical work, using translations of selected excerpts to make a powerful case.