- Kaula is a tantric practice (see TANTRISM) that seeks unity with the kula, an esoteric term best under-stood to signify SHIVA (but often the menstrual blood of the goddess), sometimes focusing on Shiva as the ultimate and sometimes on SHAKTI. It includes a variety of different acts and has no definitive boundaries. It is known to make use of practices such as the PANCHA MAKARA or Five M’s, which involve practicing sexual rituals, eating beef, and drinking alcohol. It focuses on raising the KUNDALINI serpent at the base of the spine up through the CHAKRAS toward the place above the head where it meets its lover Shiva to create ADVAITA (non-dual) consciousness and bliss.Further reading: J. C. Chatterji, Kashmir Shaivism (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1986); Mark Dyczkowski, The Doctrine of Vibration: An Analy-sis of the Doctrines and Practices of Kashmir Shaivism (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1987).
Encyclopedia of Hinduism. A. Jones and James D. Ryan. 2007.