Sources of the moth and lamp imagery
jpo at UTS.CC.UTEXAS.EDU
Thu Jun 16 18:38:14 UTC 2011
I am not sure whether this is one of the more ancient places (depends on when you date the text), but the image is found in the Arthaśāstra 7.15.14.
On Jun 16, 2011, at 1:30 PM, George Thompson wrote:
> There is also that nice, well-known simile at BhG 11.29:
> "Like the moths [patangaah] that rush frantically to the burning
> flame, and to their destruction, so these worlds rush in a frenzy into
> your mouths, to their destruction."
> George Thompson
> On Thu, Jun 16, 2011 at 5:39 AM, Klaus Karttunen
> <klaus.karttunen at helsinki.fi> wrote:
>> Dear Greg,
>> as patanga this is found in the Ramayana 3, 27, 13, Mbh. 2, 39, 19 & 3, 2,
>> 65 & 5, 52, 12, etc., as salabha in Ramayana 3, 13, 36, Mbh 2, 16, 10 & 17,
>> 15, etc., in Asvaghosa, Bhasa, etc, in Pali Udana p. 72 (PTS ed.). See my
>> “Śalabha, pataṅga, etc. Locusts, Crickets, and Moths in Sanskrit
>> Literature”, The Second International Conference of Indian Studies,
>> Proceedings. Cracow Indological Studies 4–5. 2003, 303–316.
>> Klaus Karttunen
>> Professor of South Asian and Indoeuropean Studies
>> Asian and African Studies, Department of World Cultures
>> PL 59 (Unioninkatu 38 B)
>> 00014 University of Helsinki, FINLAND
>> Tel +358-(0)9-191 22674
>> Fax +358-(0)9-191 22094
>> Klaus.Karttunen at helsinki.fi
>> On Jun 16, 2011, at 11:38 AM, Gregory Bailey wrote:
>> Dear List,
>> Can anyone enlighten me as to the earliest reference to the image of the
>> deluded moth being attracted by the lamp and then burnt in its flame.
>> Bhartṛhari (VŚ 3, 82) gives an instance of it.
>> Any help would be appreciated as another colleague has requested information
>> about this as the image is used in nationalist posters of the thirties.
>> Greg Bailey
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