Saturday, September 12, 2009

SAUNDARANANDA 14.11: Eating to Feed the Will to Freedom...

cikits"-aarthaM yathaa dhatte
vraNasy' aalepanaM vraNii
kShud-vighaat'-aarthaM aahaaras
tadvat sevyo mumukShunaa

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Just as, for the purpose of healing,

One who is wounded puts ointment on a wound,

So, for the purpose of staving off hunger,

Food is eaten by one who wills freedom.

"Willing freedom" (or the alternative "willing release") as a translation of mumukShu reflects my practice and understanding of THINKING as I have experienced the experience of experienced Alexander teachers endeavouring to teach it.

In Alexander work we make effort to free ourselves from the tyranny of faulty sensory appreciation by means of THINKING.

It is not so much that we are desirous of emancipation, and still less that we are hopeful of liberation. We will it. We THINK it.

"Neck free, head forward and up, back to lengthen and widen, legs and arms releasing out and lengthening." These words can mean nothing. Or they can express a genuine will to freedom. They can be the will to freedom expressing itself.

On this video clip on THINKING Marjory Barlow says how THINKING can be used to bring about a very indirect control over the body. Marjory describes FM Alexander's discovery of how he was able by THINKING to free himself from wrong habits as "Probably one of the biggest discoveries ever made by a human being." This is quite a statement from a lady who was not given to wild statements.

EH Johnston:
As a wounded man applies a salve to his wound to heal it, so food is to be taken to destroy hunger by the man desirous of emancipation.

Linda Covill:
A man hopeful of liberation should take food in order to remove hunger, just as a man with an ulcer puts ointment on it to heal it.

cikitsaa: f. medical attendance , practice or science of medicine
artham: for the purpose of
yathaa: just as
dhatte = 3rd pers. sg. of dhaa: to put

vraNasya = gen. of vraNa: m. a wound , sore , ulcer , abscess , tumour , cancer , boil , scar
aalepanam (acc.): n. smearing , plastering , anointing ; liniment ; ointment
vraNii (nom. sg. m): one who has a wound, sore, ulcer etc.

kShud = in compounds for kShudh: f. hunger
vighaata: m. a stroke , blow ; breaking off or in pieces ; driving back , warding off ; destruction , ruin ; removal , prohibition , prevention , interruption
artham: for the purpose of
aahaaraH (nom.): m. taking food, food

tadvat (correlative of yathaa): so, in that manner
sevyaH = nom m. of sevya: to be resorted to; to be practised
mumukShunaa = inst. of mumukShu (from √muc: to release): mfn. desirous of freeing, eager to be free (from mundane existence)

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