[INDOLOGY] Metrical inconsistencies and tradition

Dominik Haas dominik.haas at univie.ac.at
Tue Mar 31 03:42:18 EDT 2020


Yes, this would be exactly what I meant. In addition to having 8 
syllables per /pāda/, Gāyatrīs are generally (but not always) iambic. 
But I can't really see that there's anything wrong with the metre of 
this Gaṇeśa-Gāyatrī (maybe it's called /nicṛd/ because the original 
Gāyatrī verse ended up with 7 syllables in the first /pāda/, and the 
author thought this was standard?).

Mieko Kajihara's very detailed paper is excellent and I can only 
recommend it! You can also expect more information about the mantra and 
especially its defication in my dissertation. It's still 
work-in-progress, but you can find drafts, presentations and papers on 
https://univie.academia.edu/DominikHaas. The project plan is also 
archived here, if you dislike academia.edu (which I perfectly 
understand, considering the amount of trash emails they now send on a 
daily basis): https://doi.org/10.25365/phaidra.103. Sorry for the 
self-promotion!

Best,

Dominik


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Am 31.03.2020 um 00:13 schrieb Harry Spier:
> It was just pointed out to me off-list that the gāyatrī to gaṇeśa  in 
> the gaṇeśātharvaśīrsam, , the meter is called nicṛdgāyatrī = broken  
> gāyatrī, but I don't see why the meter is called "broken gāyatrī .  
> Its three lines of 8 syllables each.  Or are there other rules for 
> gāyatrī meter other than number of syllables.
>
> saiṣā gaṇeśavidyā | gaṇaka ṛṣiḥ | nicṛdgāyatrī chandaḥ | gaṇapatir 
> devatā | oṁ gaṁ ||
>
> ekadantāya vidmahe vakratuṇḍāya dhīmahi | tan no dantī pracodayāt ||
>
> Thanks,
>
> Harry Spier
>
>
> On Mon, Mar 30, 2020 at 11:51 AM Dominik Haas 
> <dominik.haas at univie.ac.at <mailto:dominik.haas at univie.ac.at>> wrote:
>
>     Dear Harry,
>
>     thanks a lot for the reference, didn't know this one! Even the
>     wrong accent is noted there already.
>
>     Well yes, mantras like these were called Gāyatrīs. The matter is a
>     bit complicated though. As far as I have come to understand it,
>     they were called thus because they imitate the famous Gāyatrī
>     verse (Ṛgveda III 62.10) or are modified versions of it. But this
>     verse acquired the name “Gāyatrī” rather late (considering its own
>     age), for the first time perhaps in the Taittirīya-Āraṇyaka and
>     then also in later additions the Dharmasūtras (in the Mahābharata,
>     too, the verse is called Gāyatrī several times, especially in the
>     later strata).
>
>     So the point is that the modified Gāyatrīs were perhaps never
>     actually thought to be in the /gāyatrī/ metre (not even by its
>     creators, whenever they lived), but were only called Gāyatrī
>     because they resemble the verse. I normally use /gāyatrī /for the
>     metre and Gāyatrī for the verse (I did not do so in my previous
>     email though). So the modified Gāyatrīs are probably not examples
>     for metrical license, i.e., they are not /gāyatrī/ verses, even
>     though they are called Gāyatrīs.
>
>     But it could very well be that some commentator explained them to
>     be in the /gāyatrī/ metre, but a /gāyatrī/ metre with extra
>     syllables etc.
>
>     Best regards,
>
>     Dominik
>
>
>     __________________
>     *Dominik A. Haas, BA MA*
>     PhD Candidate, University of Vienna
>     dominik.haas at univie.ac.at <mailto:dominik.haas at univie.ac.at>
>     ORCID 0000-0002-8505-6112 <https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8505-6112>
>     <https://univie.academia.edu/DominikHaas>
>     follow my work on
>     univie.academia.edu/DominikHaas
>     <https://www.academia.edu/keypass/ZW5ZRXhKRStPR21EbjZXN2sycGJ3UTJBa3RXRmdzMS8xcUNsZ05BNFM1ST0tLVNHeXJFaks5aVNNTEpRb21BYkVKOFE9PQ==--e24213c0e3c20341d456d6e3cac8b41f86179746/t/QmyD-NHD76Sz-yeiD0/followings/follow?followee_id=8049457&s=following_you_bundled_email>
>
>
>>
>>
>>     On Mon, Mar 30, 2020 at 8:45 AM Dominik Haas via INDOLOGY
>>     <indology at list.indology.info
>>     <mailto:indology at list.indology.info>> wrote:
>>
>>
>>         Perhaps a short note on the modified “Gāyatrīs” in the
>>         Maitrāyaṇī-Saṃhitā: the creators of these verses simply
>>         inserted a certain deity without too much regard for metre.
>>         The non-adjusted accentuation perhaps also shows that the
>>         “Gāyatrīs” in this text are more pieced together than
>>         composed anew (/pracodáyāt/ is still accented, even though
>>         it's now the verb of a main clause – or is there another
>>         explanation?).
>>
>>     Thank you for this Dominik.
>>
>>     The author in the following link, for the reasons you've
>>     mentioned and because the gayatris are mostly to later deities,
>>     argues that this section of the  Maitrāyaṇī-Saṃhitā:   is
>>     interpolated:
>>     https://books.google.ca/books?id=X0JUwf2BXVAC&pg=PA57&lpg=PA57&dq=maitrayani+samhita+x.9.1&source=bl&ots=zfBpMv9w-q&sig=ACfU3U2LME_WHFLc9K4mr4lvOD8UVoCkEg&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiIuojYs8LoAhUImuAKHYHQDPEQ6AEwAHoECAkQAQ#v=onepage&q=maitrayani%20samhita%20x.9.1&f=false
>>     You also asked:
>>      I wonder whether and where they are actually called Gāyatrīs?
>>
>>     If you do a search of the Muktabodha searchable e-text  digital
>>     library   for <gAyatrI> you'll see that throughout the tantric
>>     literature these types of mantras are called gāyatrī or
>>     gāyatrīmatra or  the deity name compounded with  gāyatrī  such
>>     as: nṛsiṃhagāyatrī  etc. If I recall correctly they are called 
>>     gāyatrī much more often than gāyatrīmantra.
>>
>>     Harry Spier
>>
>>
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