[INDOLOGY] The pre-natal/pre-incarnatory curse in Indian literature

James Hegarty hegartyjm at googlemail.com
Tue May 30 15:07:51 UTC 2017

Dear List,

I would like to pick the list’s formidable collective Indological brain.

I am interested in examples of curses that precede birth or incarnation in Indian literature.

Examples that spring to mind are Dharma being cursed to a human birth as Vidura or one of the Vasus, as Bhīṣma in the Mahābhārata.

Can anyone think of others?  I am not fussy about tradition or period, I just want to compare a few examples.

I have one other topic to raise. It is teachings given at night. 

I am interested in whether there are any family resemblances between teachings offered at night (in the most general of terms). Can anyone think of sources in which teachings are offered at night (as Vidura teaches Dhṛtarāṣṭra in the Udyogaparvan of the Mahābhārata, for example)?

Thanks in anticipation to the wise and learned list!


James Hegarty
Cardiff University

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