Sesa and Kurma carrying the Earth

Horacio Francisco Arganis Juarez h.arganisjuarez at YAHOO.COM.MX
Tue Dec 18 14:07:25 EST 2012

Dear Professor: Let me recomend to you: 

  Mysteries of the Sacred UniverseThe Cosmology of the Bhāgavata PurānaRichard L. Thompson

 With my best wishes.
Dr. Horacio Francisco Arganis Juárez

Lic. M.A. Ph. D. Catedrático Investigador de la Universidad

Internacional Euroamericana.

Departamento de Filosofía y Religión Comparada.

--- El mar 18-dic-12, Balogh Dániel <danbalogh at GMAIL.COM> escribió:

De: Balogh Dániel <danbalogh at GMAIL.COM>
Asunto: [INDOLOGY] Sesa and Kurma carrying the Earth
Fecha: martes, 18 de diciembre de 2012, 9:39


    Dear All,

    though I've been reading you for a while, this is my first letter to
    the list so maybe I'd better introduce myself.

    I'm Dániel (Daniel) Balogh from Hungary, I did my MA in Indology in
    Budapest, graduating in 2002. I've worked for the Clay Sanskrit
    Library and done some freelancing as well as a lot of non-scholarly
    work. Then two years ago I went back to university, still in
    Budapest, to work on a PhD under Csaba Dezső. My research topic is
    Mudrārākṣasa, focussing on intertextual issues and the reception of
    the play in pre-modern India.


    Now to the question on which I'd be interested in some opinions.
    There is a verse in the Mudrārākṣasa (2.19 in Hillebrandt's edition)
    that mentions
    Śeṣa bearing the earth (the context is that worthy people never give
    up, no matter how hard their task is):
    śeṣasya bharavyathā na vapuṣi kṣmāṃ na kṣipaty eṣa yat...

    There is an almost identical verse in (some MSS of)






s (number 232 in Kosambi's edition), which reads
    kūrmasya instead of śeṣasya



    I've been wondering if there are any early textual references to
    Kūrma carrying the earth. Also, what if anything could have been the
    motivation for an author or copyist to change kūrma to śeṣa or vice
    versa, and which direction of change would have been more likely?
    (Note that apparently śeṣa is not attested in any Bhartṛhari MSS,
    nor is kūrma found in any MSS of the Mudrārākṣasa, so the two
    traditions seem both pretty strong.)


    Thank you for any suggestions,





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