Atharvaveda German translations

Al Collins nasadasin at GMAIL.COM
Thu Apr 12 22:05:47 UTC 2012

I'm doing some research on the influence of India on the ideas of C.G.
Jung. In his Red Book (Liber Novus) just published (2009) there is an error
of attribution. Plate 45 is cited by Jung (calligraphy at the bottom of the
page) to refer to "Atharva-veda 4.1.4." The translator mistakenly quotes,
from the Bloomfield SBE selection of AV hymns, text from hymn *4.4.1* (a
magical hymn for sexual potency).  The hymn actually listed by Jung (4.1)
is not found in the SBE edition, and concerns Skambha, the prop between
heaven and earth, which seems to fit the painting of a man holding up a
cosmic mandala.  The Whitney AV translation in English was available before
1917 when Jung did the painting, but is quite obscure about this hymn.
Griffith also translated the entire AV, but I do not have this.  My
question is about German translations of the AV text before 1917 that
include a semi-accurate translation of 4.1.4. I make it out to read
something like, "He (Skambha), established in Order, propped apart the
great heaven and earth to be dwelling places (kSema). The Great one as he
was born propped apart the heavenly seat (sadman) and the earthly space."
The painting, as I read it at any rate centers on a (cosmic) egg from which
a serpent is rising to heaven along the axis of a vertical post that is
balanced on the head of a man (Skambha?). It fits the AV 4.1.4 text pretty
well.  So the question is whether there are German translations (or
Griffith's) that say much the same and so could be sources for Jung's
painting. A friend is looking at Jung's library to see what he had. We know
he possessed the 50 volumes of the SBE, but that cannot be the source.
 (Apologize if Jung is too far afield from Indology proper.)

Al Collins

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