N.J. Allen Article & Tapas

Ven. Tantra troyoga at YAHOO.COM
Sun Mar 12 06:59:38 UTC 2000

Many thanks to N.J. Allen for attaching the text to
his very interesting article �THE INDO-EUROPEAN
PREHISTORY OF YOGA," International Journal of Hindu
Studies, 2, 1 (April, 1998):1-20.

Of particular interest is his �Indo-European cultural
comparativistic� approach to the subject of "tapas".
He compares the heroic ordeals of Odysseus with
ascetics from pre-historic Indian sources. Hence when
�he sleeps in his pile of leaves, the Greek hero is
likened to a firebrand (dalon) carefully kept alight
under a heap of ashes (5.487).�
The author then points to a series of Svetaambara Jain
scriptural stories where a king that becomes an
ascetic similarly �undertakes intense austerities and
is likened to �fire confined within a heap of ashes.�

For my own, I would agree with the author that if
accepted, �the rapprochement has bearing on the
history of the notion of tapas (literally �heat�),� n.

Best regards,

Troy Harris

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