mkapstei at UCHICAGO.EDU mkapstei at UCHICAGO.EDU
Mon Dec 12 11:35:13 UTC 2011

John Huntington raises some valuable points. In many
parts of Asia, mountain names more often designate what
we would call massifs than they do peaks. Nevertheless,
in a few cases in Nepal, the physiognomy of a mountain
clearly played a role in its naming: Macchapucchare
and Gauri-Shankar are examples. 

Throughout the Tibetan world, it may be noted, mountains
that are identified as "yul lha" -- patron divinities
of a region -- typically are the main water-source.
This principle operates among Tibetan populations in 
Nepal, at least to some extent, as well: Numbur Himal
is in Tibetan Rdo rje dpal 'bar, the yul lha of the
Solu region (and the source of the Junbesi khola).

John's comments on Annapurna seem consistent with this.

Matthew T. Kapstein
Numata Visiting Professor of Buddhist Studies
The University of Chicago Divinity School
Directeur d'études
Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Paris

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