The current state of research
During the colonial era tantric traditions first came to the notice of scholars in the Western world, and were ignored by scholarship for a relatively long period. In the early twentieth century, the Kashmir Series of Texts and Studies began gradually to unveil to scholars a number of Śaiva tantric works that originated in Kashmir between the eighth and thirteenth centuries. Meanwhile, the scriptures of Indian Buddhist esotericism went largely unstudied for much of the twentieth century, and those that did receive attention were often studied through translations into Chinese and Tibetan.
Interest has grown dramatically in recent years, and a considerable quantity of secondary literature has appeared. However, many misconceptions persist, and much of the research that is done is not grounded in the original texts. Few of the primary authorities for the tantric religions have been reliably edited or translated. Although the large body of works still surviving in Sanskrit manuscripts has begun to attract more attention it remains mostly neglected. The rigorous study of these texts is a matter of basic and urgent necessity.