Andrea Acri


Andrea Acri


Este artículo presenta un panorama histórico de las redes de sitios y agentes que fueron instrumentales en la creación y circulación de las diferentes variedades de budismo esotérico (o tántrico) entre los siglos VII y XIII hasta su casi desaparición. El autor aborda el estudio del budismo esotérico desde una perspectiva geográfica amplia, hace hincapié en las interacciones marítimas que se produjeron a través de las llamadas «Rutas Marítimas de la Seda» en el curso de varios siglos y avanza en una narrativa histórica complementaria que toma las conexiones marítimas. Basado en evidencias textuales, materiales y arqueológicas diseminadas en toda el Asia marítima, muestra cómo migraron los maestros budistas tántricos de la «primera ola» a distintos puntos del Asia, donde evolucionaba y se consolidaba el nuevo paradigma tántrico gracias al patrocinio de dinastías como las de los Śailendras, Yarlung y Tang. Durante la expansión de la «segunda ola», los cultos tántricos que giraban en torno a aspectos sumamente esotéricos y militares de las deidades (como Heruka y Hevajra) tuvieron como seguidores al Kublai Kan en la China, a Kṛtanagara en Java oriental y a Jayavarman VII en Camboya, entre otros, hasta su posterior desaparición. El trabajo sostiene que aparte de las contingencias sociopolíticas, tales cambios de paradigma pueden haber ocurrido como resultado de «reformas» religiosas que promovieron un giro hacia las variedades no esotéricas -es decir, variantes mágicomísticas- de las tradiciones budistas (como sucedió, por ejemplo, en Sri Lanka y, en una fecha posterior, en Myanmar y Camboya con respecto a la prevalencia del budismo Therāvada sobre el Mahāyāna y Vajrayāna o incluso diferentes religiones como sucedió, por ejemplo, en Java Central). Finalmente el artículo sienta las bases para continuar los estudios académicos para identificar las redes de practicantes no institucionalizados que contribuyeron a la difusión de las formas del tantrismo en el Asia marítima. 


This article presents a historical overview covering the networks of places and agents that were instrumental to the rise and spread of the different varieties of Esoteric (or: Tantric) Buddhism between the 7th and 13th centuries until near vanishing point. The author approaches the study of Esoteric Buddhism from a broad geographical perspective, emphasizing the maritime interactions that took place through the so-called “Maritime Silk Routes” over the course of several centuries, and provides with a supporting historical narrative based on maritime linking. On the basis of textual, material, and archaeological evidence disseminated throughout all Maritime Asia, the author shows how Tantric Buddhist masters of the « first wave » migrated to different Asian locations, where the new Tantric paradigm was developed and consolidated thanks to the sponsorship of dynasties such as the Śailendras, the Yarlungs, and the Tangs. During the « second wave » of expansion, Tantric cults revolving around highly esoteric and martial aspects of deities (such as Heruka and Hevajra) were followed by Kublai Khan in China, Kṛtanagara in East Java, and Jayavarman the VII in Cambodia, among others, until they eventually disappeared. This work argues that beyond socio-political contingencies, paradigm changes may have occurred as a result of religious “reforms” which promoted a shift towards non-esoteric varieties —that is, mystical-magical variants— of Buddhist traditions (as happened, for example, in Sri Lanka and, at a later date, in Myanmar and Cambodia as regards the prevalence of Theravāda Buddhism over Mahāyāna and Vajrayāna, or even different religions as happened, for example, in Central Java). Finally, the article sets a starting point to pursue further research to identify networks of non-institutionalized practitioners who contributed to the spread of forms of Tantrism across Maritime Asia.

Palabras clave

tantra; tantrismo; budismo; esotérico; tántrico; estudios tántricos; paradigma; ruta de la seda; Asia Marítima; tantrism; Buddhism; tantric studies; tantric paradigm; Southeast Asian Studies; Silk Road Studies; Tibetan Buddhism; Indian Ocean World

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