[INDOLOGY] Churning king Vena

Dipak Bhattacharya dipak.d2004 at gmail.com
Thu Mar 20 04:16:37 EDT 2014


20.3.14

Dear Colleague,

The story goes back to Atharvaveda (Ś)VIII.10 and AVP 16.133. That deals
with the milking of Virāṭ by various beings including Pṛthī Vainya with
various vessels and youngs. Enlarged versions of the Pṛthi-Vainya part of
the myth appear in the Mahābhārata (Droṇa-P.) and many Purāṇas (Vāyu,
Matsya etc), the Bhāgavata being the latest among them. A paper with some
treatment of the milking of the earth was published in the *Journal of the
Bihar Research Society* LI, Jan-Dec 1965, 8ff. I do not know of any study
on the particular points raised but general studies on the myth or aspects
of the myth exist. The said paper refers to a paper by N.K.V.Pantulu,
*Quarterly
Journal of the Mythic Society* XXIX, 289ff . As far as I remember
U.N.Ghoshal said something on the ‘social contract’ theory claimed to have
been implied in the part of the Puranic version dealing with Vena’s
oppression. But it is the political implications of the colorful story that
drew scholars’ attention in the twenties and thirties and even much later.
Some of the papers are in Indian languages.

Will this help?

Best

DB




On Thu, Mar 20, 2014 at 10:57 AM, Artur Karp <karp at uw.edu.pl> wrote:

> Dear List,
>
> Bhagavata Purana has the brahmans churning at first the dead king Vena's
> thigh and then his arms - in order to create a new king.
>
> BhP_04.14.043/1 viniścityaivam ṛṣayo vipannasya mahīpateḥ
> BhP_04.14.043/2 *mamanthur ūruṃ* tarasā tatrāsīd bāhuko naraḥ
>
> BhP_04.15.001/1 atha tasya punar viprair aputrasya mahīpateḥ
> BhP_04.15.001/2 *bāhubhyāṃ mathyamānābhyāṃ* mithunaṃ samapadyata
>
> Would someone comment on the procedure involved and the meaning of that -
> certainly - strange ritual?
>
> Has someone worked on the king Vena's story? Any book? Paper?
>
>
> Regards,
>
> Artur Karp
>
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>
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