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Bindu (Skt., ‘drop’ or ‘particle’). A complex term of varied though related meanings in Hinduism and especially in Tantrism.

1. In a general sense it is the expression of the highest consciousness (samvid) as Śakti which is subtle, eternal, and pervades the whole universe, yet is also the centre of creation.

2. More specifically in Śāivism and Śaktism, bindu is a technical term for the material cause of pure creation (see KASHMIR ŚAIVISM). It is contrasted with māyā, the material cause of impure creation, though both must be regarded as two aspects of one reality which interpenetrate each other.

3. Bindu is equated with the anusvāra, the nasalized vowel in Sanskrit (ṃ) represented in devanāgarī as a dot with the letter. It has great symbolic significance in mantra as the absolute contracted to a point, the pure potential out of which the universe emanates and to which it returns.

4. Cosmic evolution (the macrocosm) is located within the body (the microcosm) in Tantrism. Thus bindu is located between the eyebrows as a drop which is the object of meditation. It is sometimes identified with Kuṇḍalinī, within which laya yoga is called bindu sādhana.

5. In its grossest sense, bindu is a synonym for semen, cosmic potential reduced to an individual level.

6. Bindu is depicted as the point in the centre of the Śrī yantra.

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