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Homa Variations – The Study of Ritual Change across the Longue Durée - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Homa Variations: The Study of Ritual Change across the Longue Durée

Richard K. Payne and Michael Witzel


The practice of making votive offerings into fire dates from the earliest periods of human history and is found in many different religious cultures. Throughout the tantric world, this kind of ritual offering practice is known as the homa. With roots in Vedic and Zoroastrian rituals, the tantric homa was formed in early medieval India. Since that time, it has been transmitted to Central and East Asia by tantric Buddhist practitioners. Today, Hindu forms are also being practiced outside of India as well. Despite this historical and cultural range, the homa retains an identifiable unity of symbo ... More

Keywords: homa, ritual, tantric, ritual change, longue durée

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780199351572
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199351572.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Richard K. Payne, editor
Dean and Yehan Numata Professor of Japanese Buddhist Studies, Institute of Buddhist Studies

Michael Witzel, editor
Wales Professor of Sanskrit, Harvard University

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