Personal attacks on the list

Michael Rabe mrabe at ARTIC.EDU
Tue Mar 2 14:43:38 UTC 1999

Yesterday, in a discussion of the IVC _proto-Siva_ seal [a la researches
des Hiltebeitel et Shulman, fns.1,2], a bright graduate student [from
India] asked if there were significance in the seeming commonality in sound
between Mahisha and Mahesh.  Admittedly, the thought had never occured me
[or if it's mentioned by either of those gentlemen, I'd forgotten], but I
told her I'd post the query to this list.  Are these terms mere _faux amis_
or might this coincidence be further evidence in support of the theory that
Durga's victim of choice is a sort of scape-goat substitution for her
husband, in a perennial battle twixt god and goddess for pantheonic

Reactions, anyone?
Michael Rabe
SXU/SAIC, Chicago

1 Hiltebeitel, Alf. "The Indus Valley 'Proto-Siva', Reexamined through
Reflections on the Goddess, the Buffalo, and the Symbolism of   Va-hanas."
Anthropos 73:5-6 (1978):767-97

2. _The Murderous Bride_ section of Shulman, D. D. Tamil Temple Myths:
Sacrifice and Divine Marriage in the      South Indian Saiva Tradition.
Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1980.

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