Sunday, January 11, 2009

SAUNDARANANDA 3.28: Going Forth Like Startled Bulls

bahavaH prasanna-manaso 'tha
janana-maraN'-aarti bhiiravaH
Shaakya-tanaya-vRSHabhaaH kRtino
vRSHabhaa iv' aanala-bhayaat pravavrajuH

Many then who were clear in mind --

Alert to the agony of birth and death --

Among mighty Shakya-born men of action

Went forth into the wandering life,
like bulls startled by fire.

Mental clarity (1) in regard to the inevitable pre-determined facts (2) leads to decisive channeling of energy; in other words, inhibition; in other words, directed action (3) on a path of liberation (4).

bahavaH (nominative, plural of bahu): many
prasanna: pure, tranquil, clear
manasaH (genitive of manas): of mind, in mind
atha: then, so

janana: birth
maraNa: death
aarti: painful occurrence, pain, injury, mischief; sickness
bhiiravaH (nominative, plural of bhiiru): fearful, timid, cowardly, afraid of

Shakya: Shakya; name of Gautama's clan
tanaya: offspring; sons (and daughters)
vRSHabhaaH (nominative, plural of vRSHabha): manly ones, mighty ones, bulls
kRtinaH (nominative, plural of kRtin): those who act

vRSHabhaaH: bulls
iva: like
anala: fire
bhayaat (ablative of bhaya): out of fear, because of fear
pravavrajuH (perfect of pra + vraj): went forth, left home and wandered forth as ascetic mendicants

EH Johnston:
Then many pious young Sakya nobles, with minds full of faith and fearful of the afflictions of birth and death like bulls frightened of a forest fire, adopted the wandering life.

Linda Covill:
Then many eminent sons of the Shakyas, pure-minded, virtuous and as wary of birth, death and disease as bulls of a forest fire, went forth as wanderers.

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