Skt vocabulary for: Hail

Stephen Hodge s.hodge at PADMACHOLING.FREESERVE.CO.UK
Thu Jan 20 10:49:03 EST 2000


Hello, Roland !

>> that "hail" is the correct meaning here since Sthiramati's
>> commentary (both Tib & Ch) explains that this phenomenon causes
>> wounds or injuries -- lightning would, I imagine, normally result
in
.> death.

>To this plausible interpretation I would like to add this footnote:
>being struck by a"sani in the sense of ``thunderbolt", especially
>as a literary image, does not necessarily cause death
>immediately.

Thanks for your input and useful observations regarding the
lightning/hail mystery.   I am sure what you say is valid for kavya
type literature but in the context of the other examples given in the
KP for the effects of negative attitudes and behaviour, I feel that
non-lethal "lightning" does not fit so well.

I imagine the meaning "hail" is an extension by association of the
original meaning "lightning, thunderbolt".   Here in the UK we often
have thunder and lightning with hail.   Other solid lumps of matter
falling from the sky are also linked to lightning -- Tibetans thought
that meteoric iron and tektites were linked to thunderbolts, and I
have a vague recollection that there was a popular link between
diamonds and thunder-bolts (both = vajra).

Best wishes,
Stephen



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