Thursday, March 18, 2010

SAUNDARANANDA 17.65: The Happiness of the Total Loser

tasy' aajNayaa kaaruNikasya shaastur
hRdi-stham utpaaTya hi raaga-shalyaM
ady' aiva taavat su-mahat sukhaM me
sarva-kShaye kiM bata nirvRtasya

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

For through the instruction
of the compassionate teacher

Who extracted a dart of passion
that was lodged in my heart,

Now such abundant ease is mine --

Oh! how happy I am in the loss of everything!

What does it mean to lose everything?

It might mean to totally give up the idea of doing anything, or of being anything, or of having anything to lose -- a condition of clarity and simplicity in which everything falls away.

Every joint in the human body, beginning with the head/neck joint on top of the spine, is a space. And when every part of the body tends apart from the nearest such space, the overall sense is not a sense of anything, but it might be a sense of space, emptiness -- like nothing.

Ancestors in China spoke of SHIKAN-TAZA, "just sitting."

FM Alexander spoke of letting the neck be free, to let the head go forward and up, to let the spine lengthen and back widen, while sending the knees forwards and away.

Rightly or wrongly, it seemed to me that what Alexander meant was worth investigating. It still seems to me that way... and I haven't got to the bottom of it yet.

When people tried to pin him down on the subject of religious belief, Alexander used to say, "I believe everything. And I believe nothing."

EH Johnston:
For through the instruction of the compassionate Teacher Who extracted the dart of passion from my heart, such supreme ecstasy to-day is mine, not to speak of my reaching the peace of Nirvana in the annihilation of all phenomena.

Linda Covill:
The arrow of lust that was lodged in my heart was pulled out under the direction of the compassionate teacher. Immense bliss is mine right now, and oh! my peace in the annihilation of it all!

tasya = gen. sg. m. sa: he, that [teacher]
aajNayaa = inst. sg. aajNaa: f. order , command ; authority , unlimited power ; permission
kaaruNikasya = gen. sg. kaaruNika: mfn. (fr. karuNa) compassionate
shaastuH = gen. sg. shaastR: m. a chastiser , punisher ; a ruler , commander ; a teacher , instructor

hRdi-stham (acc. sg.): situated in the heart
hRdi: (loc. of hRd) , in comp. in the heart
stha: mfn. (only ifc.) standing , staying , abiding , being situated in
utpaaTya = abs. utpaT: to tear up or out , pluck , pull out , break out ;
to draw out (a sword from its scabbard)
hi: for
raaga: colour, redness; passion
shalyam (acc. sg.): mn. a dart , javelin , lance , spear , iron-headed weapon, pike , arrow , shaft (also the point of an arrow or spear and its socket)

adya: ind. today, now
eva: (emphatic)
taavat (nom. sg.. n.): mfn. so great , so large , so much , so far , so long , so many
su-mahat (nom. sg. n.): mfn. very great , huge , vast , abundant
sukham (nom. sg.): n. ease , easiness , comfort , prosperity , pleasure , happiness
me (gen. sg. aham): mine, of me

sarva-kShaye = loc. sarva-kShaya:
sarva: all; everything
kShaya: m. loss , waste , wane , diminution , destruction; end, termination
kim: how? (particle of interrogation)
bata: ind. an interjection expressing astonishment or regret , generally = ah! oh! alas!
nirvRtasya = gen. sg. nirvRta: mfn. satisfied , happy , tranquil , at ease , at rest ; extinguished , terminated , ceased


Uku said...

Oh! how happy I am in the loss of everything!

Great line! Thanks, Mike!

Take care!


Mike Cross said...

Yes, great words. The challenge is to put meaning into them with neck, head, torso, and limbs.

Thanks for the encouragement.