Project

Resisting Normativity: Overcoming Suffering and Building Traditions in the Gelongma Palmo-AvalokiteĊ›vara Buddhist Legacy

Program

ACLS Project Development Grants

Department

Religious Studies

Abstract

The Gelongma Palmo Buddhist biographies and rituals based on the experiences of a medieval Indian Buddhist leper-nun have provided a model for female empowerment, an inspiration for the sick across cultural boundaries in Asia, and a new interpretation of the AvalokiteĊ›vara cult in Tibetan Buddhism. This book project offers an interdisciplinary history of the popular Buddhist legacy, as well as an exploration of the use of tantric texts in resisting socio-cultural normativity in religious and medical traditions. The grant will be used to further work on the book project, which will make this neglected legacy available to a wider audience.