Saturday, February 20, 2010

SAUNDARANANDA 17.39: And Enemy No. 2

dveSh'-aayudhaM krodha-vikiirNa-baaNaM
vyaapaadam antaH-prasavaM sapatnaM
maitrii-pRShatkair dhRti-tuuNa-saMsthaiH
kShamaa-dhanurjyaa-visRtair jaghaana

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That gestating love-rival, malice,

Whose weapon is hatred
and whose errant arrow is anger,

He slayed with the arrows of kindness,
which are contained in a quiver of constancy

And released from the bow-string of patience.

I have followed Johnston in understanding antaH-prasavam to mean pregnant, and have understood sa-patnam in light of its derivation from sa-patnii, which means a rival in love.

I think Ashvaghosha's intention might be to personify an opposition, or rivalry, between the two primary afflictions of (1) blind, end-gaining love and (2) hate -- i.e. between (1) the red passion identified in 17.38 as the great enemy, whose armoury includes fixing, and (2) the malice targeted in today's verse.

In translating verse 16.62 last year I translated vyaapaada as "ill-will" and its antidote maitrii as "love." Hence:

When the mind is agitated by the fault of ill-will,

Love should be practised, through self-acceptance;

For love is calming to a hate-afflicted soul,

As cooling treatment is to the man of bilious nature.

Because the English word "love" covers such a multitude of sins and virtues, however, I think on reflection that it is better to translate maitrii as "kindness" or, as has become conventional, "loving-kindness." Hence:

When the mind is agitated by the fault of malice,

Loving-kindness should be practised, towards oneself;

For kindness is calming to a hate-afflicted soul,

As cooling treatment is to the man of bilious nature.

EH Johnston:
Malevolence, the foe who is pregnant (of evil), whose weapon is hate and who discharges the arrows of wrath, he struck down by the arrows of benevolence which are placed in the quiver of firmness and fitted to the bowstring of patience.

Linda Covill:
He killed his adversary, malice, which drives one from within, which has hatred for its weapon and anger for its scattering arrows, with his own arrows of loving-kindness, kept in a quiver of constancy and dispersed by the bow-string of tolerance.

dveSha: m. hatred
aayudham (acc. sg.): n. weapon, implement
krodha: anger
vikiirNa: mfn. scattered , thrown about , dispersed
baaNam (acc. sg.): m. arrow

vyaapaadam (acc. sg.): m. destruction , ruin , death ; evil intent or design , malice
antaH-prasavam (acc. sg. m.): inside-begetting (= gestation, pregnancy ?)
antaH = antar: ind. within , between , amongst , in the middle or interior; (ibc) interior , internal , intermediate
prasava: 1. m. the pressing out (soma juice); 2. m. setting or being set in motion, impulse; 3. m. begetting , procreation , generation , conception , parturition , delivery , birth , origin ; augmentation, increase
sapatna (acc. sg.): m. (fr. sapatni) a rival , adversary , enemy
sa-patnii: f. a woman who has the same husband with another woman or whose husband has other wives , a fellow-wife or mistress , female rival
patnii: f. mistress, wife

maitrii: f. friendship , friendliness , benevolence , good will
pRShatkaiH (inst. pl.): with arrows
dhRti: firmness , constancy , resolution
tuuNa: m. a quiver
saMsthaiH = inst. pl. saMstha: being in, belonging to (loc. or comp.)

kShamaa: f. patience , forbearance , indulgence
dhanurjyaa: f. a bow-string
visRtaiH = inst. pl. visRta: mfn. come forth , issuing or proceeding from vi- √ sR: to run or flow through ; to spread out in various directions , extend (intr.) ; to be separated , part from (instr.) ; to go forth in various directions , disperse ; to come forth , issue from (abl. or -tas)
√ sR: to run , flow , speed , glide , move , go
jaghaana = 3rd per. perfect han: to strike ; to smite , slay , hit , kill , mar , destroy

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