The Indian Tantras, which are numerous, constitute the scripture (Sastra) of the Kaliyuga, and as such are a voluminous source of present and practical orthodox "Hinduism". The Tantra Sastra is, in fact, whatever be its historial origin, a development of the Karmakanda (using that term in the general sense of ritual section of the scripture), promulgated to meet the needs of that age. Siva says: "For the benefit of men of the Kali age, men bereft of energy and dependent for existence on the food they eat, the Kaula doctrine, O auspicious one! is given" (Ch. IX, verse 12). To the Tantras we must therefore look if we would understand aright both ritual, yoga, and sadhana of all kinds as they exist to-day, as also the general principles of which these practices are but the objective expression.
Yet of all the forms of Indian Sastra, the Tantra is that which is least known and understood, a
circumstance in part due to the difficulties of its subject-matter and to the fact that the key to much of its terminology and method rests with the initiate. The present translation is, in fact,
the first published in Europe of any Indian Tantra. A desire to attempt to do it greater justice
has in part prompted its selection as the first for publication. The subject covered include the
liberation of beings, the worship of Brahman, Sakti, mantras and purification, rites, hymn and amulet, castes and asramas, the ten sacraments, rites and initiation, expiatory acts, the
eternal dharma, installation of the devata, consecration and avadhutas.