[INDOLOGY] Patanjali in the Puranas?

Dominik Wujastyk wujastyk at gmail.com
Mon May 22 05:43:52 UTC 2017

Further to the idea about the mythical "three patanjalis", please, *please*
everyone note that *there is no medical Patanjali.  **There does not exist
a major author of a medical treatise in Sanskrit who is called Patanjali*.

If you wish to pursue the details, the name has been investigated in detail
by Meulenbeld in his *History of Indian Medical Literature* (especially IA:
141-44, 196).  As a person's name in medical literature, "Patanjali" lives
a ghostly life as a name cited by others, as a legendary authority, as a
person after whom recipes are named, etc. etc.   Most of these occurrences
are from the second millennium of our era, and after the first "three
Patanjalis" assertion by Bhoja Deva.  But even with these "Patanjali"
whispers, it remains the fact that there does not exist an identifiable
medical treatise by an author called Patanjali.

I'm sorry to shout.  But it baffles me to see the continuing repetition of
the idea that there was a medical Patanjali when there simply wasn't one.
Never has been.  Fake News!


Professor Dominik Wujastyk <http://ualberta.academia.edu/DominikWujastyk>

Singhmar Chair in Classical Indian Society and Polity

Department of History and Classics <http://historyandclassics.ualberta.ca/>
University of Alberta, Canada

South Asia at the U of A:


On 15 May 2017 at 23:00, Ashok Aklujkar via INDOLOGY <
indology at list.indology.info> wrote:

> Not taking the subject specification above rigidly, I would like to make
> three points:
> (a) Even in studying stories one should try to ascertain if they pertain
> to Vyākaraṇa Patañjali, Yoga Patañjali or ̄ Āyurveda Patañjali.
> (b) The tradition of the identity of these three Patañjalis may be older
> than it is usually taken to be.
> (c) In three interlinked articles published in the book mentioned below, I
> have made a case for taking the Vyākaraṇa Patañjali as a person belonging
> to Kashmir. I have also pointed out that the epithet Gonardīya (<—
> Gonandīya) definitely applies to this Patañjali and that the epithet
> Goṇikā-putra may also contain historical information about him. Much
> history can be gleaned if the stories are cautiously handled.
>         Aklujkar, Ashok. 2008. (a) “Pata~jali’s Mahābhāṣya as a key to
> happy Kashmir.” (b) “Gonardīya, Goṇikā-putra, Patañjali and Gonandīya.” (c)
> “Patañjali: a Kashmirian.” Pp. 41-87, 88-172 and 173-205, respectively in
> Linguistic Traditions of Kashmir,  (eds) Kaul, Mrinal; Aklujkar, Ashok. New
> Delhi: D.K. Printworld.
> a.a.
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