(found at the beginning of his Tantrāloka, Tantrasāra, Parātriṃśika-vivaraṇa, and Tantroccaya


Abhinavagupta's Signature Verse

vimala-kalāśrayābhinava-sṛṣṭi-mahā jananī bharita-tanuś ca pañca-mukha-gupta-rucir janakaḥ | tad-ubhaya-yāmala-sphurita-bhāva-visarga-mayaṃ hṛdayam anuttarāmṛta-kulaṃ mama saṃsphuratāt || Meaning 1: The Mother is She who is the ground of all pure action, radiant with ever-new genesis. The Father is He who is filled (with all the śaktis), maintaining his Light through his five faces. May my Heart, one with the diverse creation flowing forth from the fusion of these two, embodying the nectar of the Absolute, shine forth! Meaning 2: My mother Vimalā is she for whom the birth of Abhinava was a festival of joy; my father is renowned as Siṃhagupta, full (of the state of Śiva). May my heart, formed from the emissions of the ecstatic state of their union, embodying the nectar of the Absolute, shine forth (through this work)! Jayaratha's interpretations of Abhinava's signature verse (material in parentheses is Jayaratha's explanations): INTERPRETATION 1 (Trika): May my heart (i.e. the reality of the Self) expand fully (through the blossoming of the state of immersion consequent on discarding identification of the Self with the body, mind, or prāṇa), embodying the highest and immortal (Amā1), consisting of the emission (i.e. Consciousness' urge towards external manifestation, spontaneously) manifested from the union of these two: the Mother (the power of pure freedom), whose nature is pure (because its limiting impurities are banished [vigatā malā -> vimala]) action (i.e. the agency that is simply absolute self-reflective awareness [paravimarśa]), and whose (complete) effulgence is in the primordial creation (i.e. the Pure Universe); and the Father, his nature filled (with complete perfection), continuously attending to his desire (to perform the Five Acts) by the grace of his Five Powers [cit, ānanda, icchā, jñāna, kriyā]. (J adds: "The union of Śiva and Śakti [= the ultimate triad] is the seed of the world's diversity, because its nature is the flow of emission [visargaśakti].")

Amā = the transcendent phase of the moon, beyond time, locus of nādānta; note that Amāvāsya (new moon night) lit. means "where the sun and moon dwell together" and thus evokes the central channel.

INTERPRETATION 2 (Krama): May the Heart shine forth for me (i.e. may I realize my identity with it, i.e. with the radiance of Śrī Kālī Saṅkarṣaṇī, pulsating in intimation of the entire circle of powers beginning with Sṛṣṭikālī)—the Ultimate (since creation, stasis, and resorption are dissolved in it), the Nectar (i.e. the aesthetic rapture of one's own Self), the Kula (i.e. the Nameless)—that is one with the diverse creation (vividhaḥ sargaḥ -> visarga, = sthiti) manifested from the mingling of the two (sṛṣṭi and saṃhāra), that is, the Mother (the Nameless Goddess Consciousness, who gives birth to the universe: Śiva's supreme power that is the source of the cycles of creation etc.) grounded in [/invigorated by] the pure phase (of the moon of consciousness, full of the perfect nectar that nourishes the whole world), the splendor (of her freedom) engaged in the ever-new creation (that is her extroversion); and the Father (the supreme Knower), who protects his beauty (by means of resting in himself by drawing in the various objects of the senses) through the doorways of the five (Flow Goddesses, = the movements of the five sense faculties). INTERPRETATION 3 (Kaula): May my heart (the principle that is the rising of my inner vitality) fully expand (by reaching the summit of the experience and discourse of all). It is formed from the two highest Nectars (the Essences which appear to be semen and menstrual blood to the paśus, but here are contemplated as, e.g., the red and white Divinities), originating in the ejaculation (of both substances, brought about) from the ecstasy of sexual union (due to the coupling in Primal Worship) of (my) two (parents): my mother, represented by the phonemes Vi-ma-la, for whom the birth of Abhinava was a great festival, and my father, famous as Narasimhagupta, his body full (of the immersion into Śiva, as hers is of Śakti). Sanderson's reading: May my heart shine forth, embodying the bliss of the ultimate: > one with the state of absolute potential made manifest in the fusion of these two, the Mother grounded in pure representation, radiant in evernew genesis, and the Father, all-enfolding, who maintains the light (of consciousness) through his five faces. || > formed from the emissions produced through the fusion of these two, my mother Vimalā, whose greatest joy was in my birth, and my father [Nara]simhagupta, (when both were) all-embracing (in their union). ||

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