Max.Nihom at Max.Nihom at
Thu Feb 27 09:52:31 UTC 1997

>I'd like to thank Jacob Baltuch for putting this free-wheeling,
>increasingly weird, "other-bashing" thread into some kind of historical
>perspective.  In fact, Indology has had a *history*, a sometimes
>not-to-be-proud-of history.  I have in my hands right now a [German]
>translation of some Rgveda hymns by Herman Lommel, dedicated to his son who
>died as a soldier in WW II, and quoting RV 10.154.3-4  It is a touching
>dedication by a disconsolate father at the loss of his son.  But the quoted
>passage refers to "the heroes who have sacrificed their bodies" [zUrAso ye
>tanUtyajaH]... for what?  Well, the RV passage goes on at length about Rta,
>and the Fathers, and the great poets and seers of the past....  I don't
>know about this... I have mixed feelings about the implicit metaphor.
>Then again, I also own a book by the Iranist [not quite an Indologist, I
>suppose, but close enough] Franz Altheim. Graceful, "masculine" sword-hilts
>grace the book's cover, its title page, and the series page. It has an
>introductory quotation from Heinrich Himmler recommending the study of the
>past for a better appreciation of the present and the future....
>I am presently preparing myself for participation in an academic discussion
>of the Aryan migration theory and the controversy over the "Indigenous
>Aryan movement" that views the Punjab as "the cradle of civilization."
>That is, an *Aryan* cradle.  Increasingly, I find that I do not like this
>word "Aryan".
>In my opinion, it is probably wisest to use terms like "Indogermanisch" and
>"Aryan" with *extreme caution* and with a deeply historical perspective. It
>is not enough to profess innocent, "purely scholarly" intentions....
>Best wishes


Max Nihom

More information about the INDOLOGY mailing list