Tuesday, September 8, 2009

SAUNDARANANDA 14.7: Thermodynamics Revisited

atyaakraanto hi kaay'-aagnir
guruN" aannena shaamyati
avacchanna iv' aalpo 'gniH
sahasaa mahat" endhasaa

= = = = - = = =
- - = = - = - -
- = = - - = = =
- - = - - = - =

For the fire of the body is damped down

When it is burdened by a heavy load of food,

Like a small blaze suddenly covered

With a big heap of firewood.

Fuel can create an activation energy barrier to the burning of fuel.

That may be why old teachers much wiser than I am were sometimes heard to say, "Less is more."

If jiblet, kartikeya or any other pandit is passing, I would be grateful for clarification of the grammar of the final word of the verse, which seems to be an instrumental of a stem related to the root indh, to kindle.

EH Johnston:
For the fire of the body, if loaded with heavy food, dies down like a small fire covered all at once with a great load of fuel.

Linda Covill:
for when it is weighed down with heavy food, the fire of the body dies down like a small fire all at once covered with a lot of fuel.

ati: As a prefix to verbs and their derivatives , expresses beyond , over ; is often prefixed to nouns and adjectives , and rarely to verbs , in the sense excessive , extraordinary
aakraantaH (nom.): on which anything lies heavily , pressed by (instr. or in comp.) ; overcome , overrun , attacked , in the possession of (instr. or in comp.)
hi: for
kaaya; body
aagniH (nom.): fire ; the fire of the stomach , digestive faculty , gastric fluid

guruNa =inst. of guru: heavy, heavy in the stomach, difficult to digest
aannena (inst.): by food
shaamyati = 3rd pers. sg. of sham: to become tired , finish , stop; to cease , be allayed or extinguished

avacchanna: mfn. covered over , overspread , covered with (instr.)
iva: like
aalpaH (nom.): small
agniH (nom.): fire

sahasaa (instr. of sahas): forcibly , vehemently , suddenly , quickly , precipitately , immediately
mahataa (instr. of mahat): great
indh: to kindle , light , set on fire
indha [Apte dictionary]: m. fuel
indhana: n. kindling , lighting ; fuel ; wood , grass &c used for this purpose
indhasaa = instr. of ?[stem untraced]?


jiblet said...

Hi Mike,

It does seem that 'indhasaa' must be the instrumental singular of 'indhas' - clearly from the root 'indh' - with which 'mahataa' agrees (hence, with sandhi = 'mahatendhasaa'). But the only sign of 'indhas' in MW, is under "'indha': mfn...lighting, kindling", as the name of a Rshi (with a reference to Panini which is beyond me). 'Mahataa' indicates that 'indhas' must be a masculine or neuter stem; the feminine would demand 'mahatyaa', and Peter Scharf's Sanskrit Library's Nominal Paradigm Generator does accept 'indhas', generating 'indhasaa' as a masc. or neut. instrumental.

That's all I can offer. I guess it's pretty much what you concluded.

Mike Cross said...

Thanks, jiblet. Very much appreciated.