India and the Occult: The Influence of South Asian Spirituality on Modern Western Occultism (BOK)
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At the beginning of the twentieth century, Indian Yoga and Tantra become attractive to some major exponents of Western occultism. In a gesture typical of the syncretic tendency in Esotericism, Yoga is by these Westerners often identified as an Eastern form of magic: the two disciplines were considered to share similar theoretical perspective, the difference in their methods notwithstanding. India and the Occult explores the reception of Indian spirituality among Western occultists through several case studies. Unlike existing works focusing on the activities of Theosophical Society, it looks at the 'hard-core' occultism, in particular the British twentieth century currents associated with Aleister Crowley, Dion Fortune, Kenneth Grant, and related individuals and groups. Without denying the specificity of its Western historical manifestation, it suggests that esotericism is a category that may be applied as a conceptual tool in order to interpret aspects of non-Western religious thought and practice.