Saturday, November 7, 2009

SAUNDARANANDA 15.14: To Meet a Real Elephant

nivRttaM yasya dauHshiilyaM
vyaapaadash ca pravartate
hanti paaMsubhir aatmaanaM
sa snaata iva vaaraNaH

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

He in whom wrong-doing is not being done

And ill-will is being allowed to continue

Is hitting himself with dust

Like a bathed elephant.

What kind of non-doing is nivRtta, non-doing?

What kind of allowing is pravRt, to continue being allowed?

What kind of hitting the self is hanti aatmaanam, hitting the self?

And what kind of bathed elephant is this snaata vaaraNa, bathed elephant?

If I hurl onto this comment a load of my own dust, two turbid questions I would like to raise are these:

When a jewel is bright and clear, is turbid water allowed to continue being turbid, or is turbid water forced not to be turbid?

Is the Buddha talking about a fake elephant, or about a real elephant?

EH Johnston:
He who has given up evil ways and yet in whom malevolence is active throws dirt over himself, as an elephant throws dirt over his body after his bath.

Linda Covill:
When malice operates in someone who has renounced bad conduct, he heaps himself with filth, like an elephant throwing dust over himself after a wash.

nivRttam (nom./acc. sg. n.): mfn. turned back , returned to (acc.) ; rebounded from (abl.) ; retreated ; averted from , indifferent to , having renounced or given up (abl. or comp.); ceased to be valid or binding (as a rule) ; omitted , left out ; finished , completed
yasya (gen.): of whom
dauHshiilyam (nom./acc. sg.): n. bad character or disposition, wickedness
dauH = vRddhi form of duH, in comp. for dus: ind. a prefix to nouns and rarely to verbs or adverbs implying evil , bad , difficult , hard
shiil: to act , do , practise , make ; Caus. shiilayati to do , make , practise repeatedly or exceedingly

vyaapaadaH (nom. sg.): m. destruction; evil intent or design , malice
ca: and
pravartate = 3rd pers. sg. pra- √ vRt: to roll or go onwards ; be produced ; occur ; to continue

hanti = 3rd pers. sg. han: to strike, hammer (acc.); smite, mar ; to hurl (a dart) upon (gen.)
paaMsubhiH = inst. pl. paaMsu: m. crumbling soil , dust , sand (mostly pl.) ; dung , manure
aatmaanam = acc. sg. aatman: m. the breath ; the soul , principle of life and sensation; the individual soul , self ; essence , nature ; the person or whole body considered as one and opposed to the separate members of the body ; the body

sa: he
snaata: mfn. bathed , washed
iva: like
vaaraNaH = nom. sg. m. vaaraNa: mfn. warding off , restraining , resisting , opposing; m. an elephant (from its power of resistance)

1 comment:

Mike Cross said...

NB: originally su-snāta, "mfn. well purified by bathing , (esp.) one who has duly performed his ablutions."