Sakadwipa (Churning of the Ocean)

Yaroslav Vassilkov yavass at YV1041.SPB.EDU
Sun Jan 30 21:18:46 UTC 2000

Fri, 28 Jan 100 17:39 +0300 MSK Swaminathan Madhuresan wrote to INDOLOGY at LISTSERV.LIV.AC.UK:

> Does the churning of the ocean legend involve more of poetic
> fancy...?

The answer, as it seems to me, is: yes, in a way. Acc. to the interpretation
which looks most plausible (see: S.A.Dange. Legends in the Mahabharata. Delhi,
MBL, 1969, pp. 241-280; R.Parrot. A Discussion of the two Metaphors in
the "Churning of the Ocean" from the Mahabharata. - ABORI 1983 [Poone 1984],
vol. LXIV, pts. 1-4, pp. 17-33), this story is a mythic metaphor based on
the ritual practice of pressing (and mixing with milk) of Soma, as well as
(partly) on the process of butter churning.

As for another question, in the MahAbhArata version of the myth KRSNa
does not appear (but ViSNu, of course, does).

Best regards

Yaroslav Vassilkov (yavass at
Sun, 30 Jan 2000 22:11 +0300 MSK

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