Indian Philosophy Brainless?

Sandra Smets smets at ORI.UCL.AC.BE
Thu Sep 23 08:39:37 UTC 2004

I would like to draw your attention on another usage of the word masti.ska 
in ayurvedic literature: it also designates the "brain tissue" (translation 
of Meulenbeld, A History of Indian Medical Literature, IA, p. 46), which is 
quantified in several texts with other fluids. See CaSa s/aa. 7.15 
(masti.skasyaardhaañjali.h), Kaa/sSa s/aa. 4.34 (s/ukrasyaardhaañjalir dehe 
masti.skasya tathaiva ca) , BhelaSa s/aa. 7.6 (eko majjña.h 
masti.skasyaañjali.h s/uklasya ceti), AS s/aa. 5.63 (ardhaañjali.h 
s/ukrasya taavad eva masti.skam ojas/ ca). In the same context, the 
Yaajñavalkyasm.rti (III.106) uses the word mastaka (ardham tu mastake), 
which designates the "container" of the brain, i. e. the skull (cfr also 
the Mitaak.sara ad loc.: mastake punar ardhaañjali.h majjaa).

Yours sincerely,

Sandra SMETS

Institut orientaliste - Centre d'Etudes de l'Inde et de l'Asie du Sud-Est
Place Blaise Pascal, 1
B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve

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