Malaya location in 5th cent.

N. Ganesan naga_ganesan at HOTMAIL.COM
Tue Feb 16 21:24:15 UTC 1999

 In the received vesrion of the text which is based
on manuscript no older than 12 century however we can see the
place as "the top of the Lanka mountain on the SHORE of the
southern sea"

In the second mentioning in the text that survived even in the
chinese manuscripts and which is probably the begining of the
sutra in its early form, there in this text from the 420 A.D. in
manuscripts from 7th or 8th cent. is Buddha requested to preach in
the kingdom of Lanka on the mountain of Mala (MaLaShan)
(received version from the 12th cent. manuscript has MalayaShan)
IN THE OCEAN. I wonder if this word "Mala" can suggest any
meaning in Sanskrit language especially in the passage bellow.

  Dear Petr,

  Greetings from N. Ganesan.

  Malai in Tamil means mountain. In Sanskrit, malaya is
  a Dravidian loan word.

  We have numerous texts locating Malaya mountain in
  Pandya country, both in Sanskrit and Tamil. It is
  the Mt. Potikai/Potiyil I am talking about.

  I think Mahabharata, vAnaparvan section on Malaya mountain
  has exactly the description you are telling.
  The Mahabharata passage describes the abode of Agastya,
  the muni/saint of Malaya mountain. This MBh. description also
  describes the Lake on Malaya mountain. Check out the
   MBh. vanaparvan passage in the English translation by
   J. van Buitenan, UChicagop.

  The same kind of description of Malaya mountain is provided
  by Xuan Zang and also Chih Sheng. With a Lake on the Malaya/Potalaka

  I am looking at US Airforce map, a very detailed one.
  The Mt. Potikai is about 6500 feet high. It is closer
  to Quilon (Kollam) on the seashore of the Kerala (West) coast.
  It is not far from Thiruvananthapuram either.
  There is a huge lake from which the river taNporunai/tAmraparNI
  flows. There are many lakes in Malaya mountain range,
  Some miles north, there is a town, Periya kuLam, (Big Lake);
  Some miles south there is a big lake in Kanyakumari district.
  All in Malaya mountains of South India.

   There are many clues to GaNDavyUha; it talks of successive
   kalyANamitra sites of South India. Few are in Tamilnadu.
   For example, kollip pAvai narrated in Classical Sangam
   texts finds a place in GaNDavyUha. The Lotus sutra also
   few very South specific themes.

   May be LankAvatAra sUtra is also a South Indian text
   talking of Mt. Malaya/Potiyil/Potikai.

   Two centuries later, Bodhidharma, Dinnaga, DharmakIrti
   etal., from Kanchipuram spread Buddhism to the East.

   N. Ganesan

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