Drum Example

Dominik Wujastyk ucgadkw at UCL.AC.UK
Fri Oct 24 14:43:40 UTC 2008

oh, how interesting!  This thing about beating smeared drums for health 
occurs in the Susrutasamhita too, in a section of the Kalpasthana on 
curing poisoning that may affect a population as a whole.  The caustic 
paste is smeared on drums, banners and doorways in the town.

I mention this briefly in Roots of Ayurveda, 3rd ed., pp.78--9.

Dr Dominik Wujastyk
Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow
University College London

On Fri, 24 Oct 2008, Stephen Hodge wrote:

> Dear all,
> I have come across a rather odd example, used in at least three texts to my 
> knowledge (Mahābherikāhara-sūtra, Śuraṃgama-samādhi-sūtra and 
> Mahā-parinirvāṇa-sūtra). With slight variances, the basic outline of the 
> example is that there exists an extremely potent drug which is smeared on 
> the tops of drums. Then, when these drums are beaten, arrows and so forth 
> spontaneously extract themselves from wounds suffered in battles, even at a 
> considerable distance. My query is i) has anybody come across this same 
> example elsewhere in Buddhist materials, and ii) is it known in the wider 
> Indian literature ? It seems such an implausible feat, I would like to know 
> if there is any detailed story concerning this anywhere.
> Best wishes,
> Stephen Hodge

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