[INDOLOGY] Best wishes for a Peaceful Christmas and New Year...

Christian Ferstl christian.ferstl at univie.ac.at
Mon Jan 2 12:58:37 UTC 2023

Dear Prof. Houben,
dear Bihani Sarkar,

perhaps another verse from the Raghuvaṁśa is of interest in this context 
in addition to the two verses already mentioned (13.50, 14.79). 
Raghuvaṁśa 11.23 describes the ascetic grove of Viśvāmitra and his 
pupils which is guarded by the adolescent Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa: the trees 
there are fancied to have their buds put forth like hands folded in 
reverence (baddhapallavapuṭāñjali) and the deer is not afraid but on the 
contrary raising their eyes (darśanonmukha, watching the sage, as 
Mallinātha expounds).

May I use this opportunity to ask about the plans and status of the 
edition of the further volumes of the Raghupañcikā of Vallabhadeva by 
Dominic Goodall et al.?

Christian Ferstl

Am 01.01.2023 11:23, schrieb Bihani Sarkar via INDOLOGY:
> Dear Professor Houben,
> There is a reference to this in the text of the _Kumārasambhava_, as
> read and commented on by Aruṇagirinātha and
> Nārāyaṇapaṇḍita, in the section on Pārvatī's tapas. In Sarga
> 5, Pārvatī's asceticism to win Śiva is described, and its
> transformative, purifying power is said to have affected the
> surrounding environment, causing even animals usually at war to become
> gentle towards each other:
> _virodhisattvojjhitapūrvamatsaraṃ__ _
> _drumair abhīṣṭaprasavārcitātithi |__ _
> _navoṭajābhyantarasambhṛtānalaṃ__ _
> _tapovanaṃ tatra babhūva pāvanam ||_ 5.17
> 'There [on Mount Gaurīśikhara], her [very] ascetic grove, in which,
> inside a newly built leaf hut, she had built the sacred fire, became
> purifying: even beasts there mutually at war were free of their
> ancient hostility (_virodhisattvojjhitapūrvamatsaraṃ_), and its
> trees worshipped guests with choice buds.'
> As the two commentators note, these--i.e. peaceful animals, and trees
> being hospitable to guests (just like the ascetic)--are the special,
> magical characteristics of the hermitage groves of great ascetics.
> Nārāyaṇa provides the following citation to a source I am not yet
> able to identify, thus:
> _'tapovanocitāni viśeṣaṇāny āha--
> virodhisattvojjhitapūrvamatsaram ityādinā | 'spṛśati kalabhaḥ
> saiṃhīṃ daṃṣṭrāṃ mṛṇāladhiyā muhur' iti
> āditapovanavṛttānto' tra draṣṭavyaḥ |_
> [Kālidāsa] describes the qualities appropriate to hermitage groves
> with the compound 'even beasts there mutually at war were free of
> their ancient hostility'. "A baby elephant keeps touching a lion's
> fang thinking it to be a lotus stem"-- such a description of a
> hermitage grove is apparent in this case.'
> I am not sure which _tapovanavṛttānta_ the quote about the baby
> elephant placing his trunk inside the lion's mouth with utmost ease is
> from. But evidently in such tales of hermitage groves, which the
> commentator was aware of, there is an idea that the dharma of such
> places is non-violence and generosity between man and beast, not to be
> witnessed in the real world. And that this dharma is a transposition
> of the ascetic's own quality onto the surrounding environment.
> It would be interesting to read the _Raghuvaṃśa_ verses you mention
> below in a parenthesis in relation to this.
> Thank you
> Bihani Sarkar MA (English, First Class Hons.), MPhil DPhil (Sanskrit),
> (Oxon.)
> Lecturer in Comparative Non-Western Thought,
> Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion,
> Lancaster University.
> On Sat, Dec 31, 2022 at 8:44 PM Jan E.M. Houben via INDOLOGY
> <indology at list.indology.info> wrote:
>> Dear All,
>> Thank you all who have reacted with precious references to passages
>> relevant to what is perhaps a kind of "radiance of peace" concept,
>> expressed briefly in Yoga-sūtra 2.35,
>> अहिंसाप्रतिष्ठायां,
>> तत्सन्निधौ वैरत्यागः ।
>> It seems that only the extensive passages in the Rāmāyaṇa
>> Kakawin to which Andrea Acri referred extends the concept explicitly
>> to human society.
>> I am grateful for the references to the Mahābhārata,
>> Śākuntalopākhyāna (famously elaborated also by Kālidāsa), and
>> the Telugu commentary on it.
>> Also the reference to the Caitanya-caritāmṛta in Sanskritic
>> Bengali bring us beyond the scope of Sanskrit literature in the
>> strict sense of the word.
>> The reference to Aśvaghoṣa’s Saundarānanda I find important
>> because it concerns the legendary sage Kapila, known as one of the
>> founders of the Sāṁkhya system of philosophy (as I have argued,
>> Sāṁkhya was originally more a movement, partly in protest to
>> Vedic ritualism, and became a philosophical system afterwards).
>> The scene described in this reference is almost a Sāṁkhya
>> illustration of the concept (later on?) formulated in YS 2.35.
>> One part of a similar formula is perhaps found in the
>> saṁnyāsa-vidhi attributed to a certain Kapila,  अभयं
>> सर्वभूतेभ्यो मत्तस्
>> स्वाहा ।(Baudhāyana-Gṛhya-Śeṣa-Sūtra 4.16.4).
>> The other part remains here apparently unexpressed, namely: the
>> expectation that this declaration will lead to
>> वैरत्यागः and to wild animals etc. to provide,
>> reciprocatively, abhayam to the ascetic (and, near the ascetic, to
>> each other).
>> A very similar or rather parallel concept, expressed in different
>> terms, is found, in my view, in the maitrī and maitrī-bhāvanā of
>> Buddhism, as discussed by Lambert Schmithausen in his _Maitrī and
>> Magic : Aspects of the Buddhist Attitude Toward the Dangerous in
>> Nature_, Vienna, 1997.
>> As we know that nonviolence was and is an important religious duty
>> in JAINISM it would be interesting to know whether in that context,
>> too, a concept of a "radiance of peace" was known or developed...
>> With best wishes to all,
>> On Sun, 25 Dec 2022 at 19:13, Jan E.M. Houben <jemhouben at gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>>> Dear All,
>>> According to Yoga-sūtra 2.35,
>>> अहिंसाप्रतिष्ठायां,
>>> तत्सन्निधौ वैरत्यागः ।
>>> which apparently means that when someone is thoroughly established
>>> in non-violence, (mutual) enmity disappears in his environment.
>>> Commentaries and references given for aphorism and referred to for
>>> instance in James Wood’s translation emphasize that in this
>>> situation *even* wild animals, no more attack their prey. An
>>> example is Kirāṭārjunīya 2.55 (meter viyoginī): Vyāsa is
>>> looked at by Yudhiṣṭhira:
>>> madhurair avaśāni lambhayann   api tiryañci śamaṃ
>>> nirīkṣitaiḥ  /
>>> paritaḥ paṭu bibhrad enasāṃ   dahanaṃ dhāma
>>> vilokanakṣamam  //
>>> “Calming even wild animals by his gentle looks, spreading a
>>> blazing radiance around which burns away guilt, (but which yet)
>>> can be gazed at (the sage, i.e., Vyāsa son of Parāśara, was
>>> seen by the king, Yudhiṣṭhira)” (tr. following Roodbergen
>>> 1984, p. 143; cp. also Raghuvaṁśa 13.50, 14.79.)
>>> Are any more convincing stories or anecdotes known in Sanskrit
>>> literature, in which the peace-creating influence suggested in YS
>>> 2.35 inspires animals or *even* humans to behave in a more
>>> peaceful way ?
>>> With best wishes for a Peaceful Christmas New Year to all:
>>> शान्ते !  ऽस्मिन् लोक
>>> एधस्व   विद्यातः
>>> प्रेमतस्तथा ।
>>> तव भक्तजनानां च
>>> कल्याणमस्तु सर्वदा ॥
>> --
>> Jan E.M. Houben
>> Directeur d'Études, Professor of South Asian History and Philology
>> _Sources et histoire de la tradition sanskrite_
>> École Pratique des Hautes Études (EPHE, Paris Sciences et Lettres)
>> _Sciences historiques et philologiques _
>> Groupe de recherches en études indiennes (EA 2120)
>> _johannes.houben [at] ephe.psl.eu_
>> _https://ephe-sorbonne.academia.edu/JanEMHouben_
>> _https://www.classicalindia.info_ [1]
>> LabEx Hastec OS 2021 -- _L'Inde Classique_ augmentée: construction,
>> transmission
>> et transformations d'un savoir scientifique
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