Re: [INDOLOGY] Matty Weingast's Therīgāthā

Lubin, Tim LubinT at
Mon Jan 25 18:19:23 UTC 2021

Dear all,

Outside of Pali contexts, it is normally treated as a dvandva, and indeed kṣema is understood as safe-guarding or securing (parirakṣaṇam, paripālanam).  Standard commentarial glosses are of the type:
alabdhalābho yogaḥ, labdhaparirakṣaṇaṃ kṣemaḥ (Madhusūdana on BhG 2.45)
yogakṣemau = alabdhalābha-labdhaparipālane  (Anargharāghavapañcikā 2.40)
yogo.alabdhalābhaḥ … kṣemaṃ labdhaparirakṣaṇaṃ (Īśvarapratyabhijñāvivṛtivimarśinī, p. 240)

Kauṭilya 6.2.1 provides a definition:
KAŚ06.2.01/ śamavyāyāmau yogakṣemayor yoniḥ //
KAŚ06.2.02/ karmārambhāṇāṃ yogārādhano vyāyāmaḥ //
KAŚ06.2.03/ karmaphalopabhogānāṃ kṣemārādhanaḥ śamaḥ //
KAŚ06.2.04/ śamavyāyāmayor yoniḥ ṣāḍguṇyam //
KAŚ06.2.05/ kṣayaḥ sthānaṃ vṛddhir ity udayās tasya //

1. Rest and exertion form the basis of enterprise and security.*
2. Exertion consists of the enterprise that one furnishes to activities that are being undertaken.
3. Rest consists of the security that one furnishes to the enjoyment of the fruits of one’s activities.
4. The basis of rest and exertion is the sixfold strategy (> 7.1.2).
5. Its outcomes are decline, stability, and prosperity.  (tr. Olivelle 2013)

Olivelle’s note thereon:
“Rest . . . security : The translation of the compound yogakṣema poses several problems. As a single concept, it often refers to security or security measures. Thus, at MDh 9.219, yogakṣema is one of the items that cannot be divided during the partitioning of an inheritance, and there it clearly refers to security measures, such as fences for fields and houses. In the Vedic usage, yoga referred to the trek, when the people were on the move in search of wealth, while kṣema referred to a time of encampment and rest in a defensive position. I think this dual meaning of the compound is prominent in the AŚ. In this passage, rest (śama) is connected to kṣema, and exertion (vyāyāma) to yoga. I have regularly translated the compound as a dual, unless the context dictates otherwise (e.g., 1.13.7, 8; 3.11.3).”

And 1.4.3 suggests that the compound provides the basis (the first half) of daṇḍanīti:
ānvīkṣikītrayīvārttānāṃ yogakṣemasādhano daṇḍaḥ, tasya nītir daṇḍanītiḥ, alabdhalābhārthā labdhaparirakṣaṇī rakṣitavivardhanī vṛddhasya tīrthe pratipādanī ca //

3. What provides enterprise and security (6.2.1 n.) to critical inquiry, the Triple [i.e., Veda], and economics is punishment (daṇḍa); its administration (nīti) is government (daṇḍa-nīti). Government seeks to acquire what has not been acquired, to safeguard what has been acquired, to augment what has been safeguarded, and to bestow what has been augmented on worthy recipients

It is thus the king’s duty is to provide an environment in which those complementary goals can be pursued:
Hence yogakṣemaśabdena yogakṣemakāriṇo rājamantripurohitādaya ucyante iti kecit… (Mit. ad YājñDh 2.119)

But the deity may also be appealed to for success:

YājñavalkyaDh 1.100ab (99ab in Olivelle’s edition):
upeyād īśvaraṃ caiva yogakṣemārthasiddhaye |
“He may, furthermore, approach the lord for success in the aims of acquiring and safeguarding.”

Mitākṣarā thereon: alabdhalābho yogaḥ, labdhaparipālanaṃ kṣema, tadartham upeyād upāsīta |

Nārāyaṇa on the Nīlarudra Up. 1.3, speaking of Rudra’s activities:
anena kṣemakāritvam uktam | alabdhalābho yogas … so ’pi te tavāpūrvalābhakaro ’py etv āgacchatu yogakṣemakaro ’bhiṣekajale saṃnihito bhavatv ity arthah.


Timothy Lubin
Jessie Ball duPont Professor of Religion and Adjunct Professor of Law
204 Tucker Hall
Washington and Lee University
Lexington, Virginia 24450
American Council of Learned Societies fellow, 2020–21
National Endowment for the Humanities fellow, 2020–21<><><><>

From: INDOLOGY <indology-bounces at> on behalf of INDOLOGY <indology at>
Reply-To: Rolf Heinrich Koch <rolfheiner.koch at>
Date: Monday, January 25, 2021 at 8:49 AM
To: INDOLOGY <indology at>
Subject: Re: [INDOLOGY] Matty Weingast's Therīgāthā

Dear Matthew,

For several excerpts from the Pali Kanon which are compared with Sanskrit sources (on yogakkhema/yogakṣema) see also:
Shozen Kumoi, The Concept of Yoga in the Nikāyas. Studies in Honour of Heinz Bechert on the Occasion of His 65th Birthday, Indica et Tibetica, vol. 30, p. 407-420.


Am 25.01.2021 um 12:50 schrieb Matthew Kapstein via INDOLOGY:
Yes, thank you, Patricia, - it has been widely.

To the list more generally -

There is one question it raises for me, not about Weingast's fantasies, but about K. R. Norman's
translation cited herein. In the first verse quoted, he renders yogakkhema (= Skt. yogakṣema) as "rest-from-exertion". Charles Hallisey, in his recent translation of the same work<>
gives "safety," which seems more plausible to me in light of the Sanskrit usage.

I would be grateful for any insights you might have into Norman's treatment of the term and, more generally, into the semantic range of the curious expression yogakṣema. Tibetan lexicographers, by the way, treated it as having the meanings "accomplished" (grub-pa = siddha) and "comfort/ease/happiness" (bde-ba = sukha).

best to all,

Matthew Kapstein
Directeur d'études, émérite
Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Paris

Numata Visiting Professor of Buddhist Studies,
The University of Chicago
From: INDOLOGY <indology-bounces at><mailto:indology-bounces at> on behalf of Valerie J Roebuck via INDOLOGY <indology at><mailto:indology at>
Sent: Monday, January 25, 2021 5:20 AM
To: Patricia Sauthoff <sauthoff at><mailto:sauthoff at>
Cc: Indology List <indology at><mailto:indology at>; +++RISA ACADEMIC DISCUSSION LIST+++ <RISA-L at><mailto:RISA-L at>
Subject: Re: [INDOLOGY] Matty Weingast's Therīgāthā

Thank you very much for this.

Valerie J Roebuck
Manchester, UK
Sent from my iPad

On 24 Jan 2021, at 00:31, Patricia Sauthoff via INDOLOGY <indology at><mailto:indology at> wrote:
Dear all,

I thought you might find this article on the myriad issues with a recent publication of the Therīgāthā of interest.<>

Dr. Patricia Sauthoff, PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow<>
Department of History, Classics, and Religious Studies
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Canada
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