Re: [INDOLOGY] Purāṇas, "resembling the belly of a mirror"
H.J.H.Tieken at hum.leidenuniv.nl
Wed Jan 31 20:21:41 UTC 2018
Dear Toke, maybe the following passage from the Nāṭyaśātra (2, 72cd-73ab) is of interest to you. It deals with the surface of the raṅgaśīrṣa:
kūrmapr̥ṣṭhaṃ na kartavyaṃ matsyapr̥ṣṭhaṃ tathaiva ca
**śuddhādarśatalākāraṃ** raṅgaśīrṣaṃ praśasyate.
With kind regards, Herman
2515 BP Den Haag
00 31 (0)70 2208127
Van: INDOLOGY [indology-bounces at list.indology.info] namens Toke Lindegaard Knudsen via INDOLOGY [indology at list.indology.info]
Verzonden: woensdag 31 januari 2018 14:15
Onderwerp: [INDOLOGY] Purāṇas, "resembling the belly of a mirror"
I’m looking at some purāṇic passages where the expression “resembling the belly of a mirror” occurs.
Liṅgapurāṇa 2.28.47-48 (all references in this email are drawn from GRETIL) has:
śrūyatāṃ paramaṃ guhyaṃ vedikoparimaṇḍalam /
aṣṭamāṅgulasaṃyuktaṃ maṅgalākuraśobhitam //
phalapuṣpasamākīrṇaṃ dhūpadīpasamanvitam /
vedimadhye prakartavyaṃ darpaṇodarasannibham //
The verses speak of a diagram, maṇḍala, to be drawn in the center of the altar, vedi. The expression darpaṇodarasannibham, “resembling the belly of a mirror,” is used with reference to the maṇḍala.
Liṅgapurāṇa 1.8.83 has:
atyantanirmale samyak supralipte vicitrite /
darpaṇodarasaṃkāśe kṛṣṇāgarusudhūpite //
The context is the location where a practitioner should engage in yoga. The expression darpaṇodarasaṃkāśe, “resembling the belly of a mirror,” is used to describe a characteristic the place should have.
The Śivapurāṇa 7.2,29.11-13 has:
na tu prayogo bhidyeta vakṣyamāṇasya karmaṇaḥ /
parīkṣya bhūmiṃ vidhivadgaṃdhavarṇarasādibhiḥ //
manobhilaṣite tatra vitānavitatāṃbare /
supralipte mahīpṛṣṭhe darpaṇodarasaṃnibhe //
prācīmutpādayetpūrvaṃ śāstradṛṣṭena vartmanā /
ekahastaṃ dvihastaṃ vā maṇḍalaṃ parikalpayet //
The context here is the ground on which the diagram, maṇḍala, is placed. The expression darpaṇodarasaṃnibhe, “resembling the belly of a mirror,” is used to describe the ground.
I’m interested in the image of a belly of a mirror used in the passages. The most obvious interpretation is that the image conveys something smooth, polished, and clean, as we would want a mirror to be; imperfections and dirt would distort the image we see in the mirror. I doubt that ‘reflective’ is meant, though ‘shining’ is a possibility.
My question is if the image could be used to indicate shape in some way? I doubt ‘concave’ or ‘convex’ shape is meant, but perhaps ‘round’ or ‘flat’?
With all best wishes,
Toke Lindegaard Knudsen, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow
Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies
University of Copenhagen
<toke.knudsen at hum.ku.dk>
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