Monday, December 22, 2008

SAUNDARANANDA 3.8; Party Time for Birds & Bees; The Mara Reflex Releases Its Grip

avagamya taM ca kRta-kaaryam
amRta-manaso divaukasaH
harSHam atulam agaman muditaa
vimukhii tu Maara-pariSHat pracukSHube

Sensing the completion of his task,

Beings in the sky minded towards the undying

Buzzed and fluttered about with unbridled joy,

While Mara and his crew departed, downcast and trembling.

The beings described in line two I have preferred to see not as imagined deities in heaven but as real beings like bees, birds and butterflies which naturally belong to the sky, and which are naturally minded towards Nature -- Nature being one face, at least, of the deathless.

In that case, these four lines describe: perfection in the gaining of an end (1); and natural beings (2) expressing their joy in action (3); as the whole world is released from the grip of the fearful one and the retinue of primitives that cluster around him (4).

avagamya: having understood, learned, known, supposed
taM = accusative of saH: he
ca: and
kRta: done, fulfilled, completed
kaarya: task

amRta-manas: minded towards the deathless, intent on the undying
divaukasaH = genitive of divaokas: ‘the sky-dwelling’ -- birds, bees, butterflies, and other beings buzzing about in the great blue beyond.

harSHa: bristling, erection (especially of the hair in a thrill of rapture or delight); exultation, joy, pleasure, happiness; erection of the sexual organs, sexual excitement
atula: unequalled, boundless
agaman: went, attained
muditaa: rejoiced

vimukha: departing disappointed, averse to
tu: but
Maara-pariSHat: Mara's followers, retinue
(from para + SHii: to lie around?)
pracukSHube: trembled, were agitated

EH Johnston:
The dwellers in Heaven, whose minds were set on immortality, learning that He had fulfilled His task, rejoiced with an exceeding great joy, but the court of Mara was downcast and trembled.

Linda Covill:
When they recognized that he had accomplished his task, the deities in heaven, whose minds were set on deathlessness, felt boundless joy and delight, but Mara's followers were hostile and agitated.

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