A few indological inquiries

adi at uclink2.berkeley.edu adi at uclink2.berkeley.edu
Tue May 2 15:30:13 UTC 1995

 > 1. In Orissa, the main structure of a temple, as well as its inner
>> sanctuary, is usually called "deul". This does not appear to be a sanskrit
>> word, although it could plausibly be derived from the root dIv/dev.
>> What is the accepted etymology of this term?
>Interestingly, "deuL" is also the Marathi
>word for temple.  I would guess that it is
>indeed from Sanskrit.

Deval, as it is used in Hindi, is probably from Skt. devalaya, house of the
god(s). The word occurs extensively in modern and premodern NIA languages.
Cf. the famous line from Kabir, "na main deval, na main masjid, na kaabe
kailas mein, moko kahan tu dhundh re bande?" ("I am not to be found in the
temple, nor the mosque, nor in the Kaaba, nor at Kailasa; where do you look
for me, O man?") The punch-line, of course, is that God is to be found in
one's own heart.

Aditya Behl
Department of South and Southeast Asian Studies,
1203, Dwinelle Hall,
University of California at Berkeley,
Berkeley, California 94720.

Electronic Mail: adi at uclink2.berkeley.edu
Telephone: 1 (510) 642-1610 (O), 843-1264 (R) 
Facsimile: 1 (510) 642-3582


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