Monday, July 26, 2010

SAUNDARANANDA 2.47: Essences of Dharma, Moving

dharm'-aatmaanash carantas te
dharma-jijNaasayaa jagat
dadRshus taM visheSheNa
dharm'-aatmaanaM nar'-aadhipaM

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

Those essences of dharma, moving,

With the desire to know dharma, over the earth,

Saw that leader of men

Whose essence was particularly given over to dharma.

"Change" FM Alexander said "is the ultimate reality."

FM Alexander also said: "You all fix."

I certainly do. And having been awakened at least partially by Alexander work to this fixing tendency, I know that FM Alexander really knew, in this area of changing and fixing, what he was talking about.

In this and the previous verse the word dharma appears five times, and words from the root car, to move, appear three times.

Starting from the prejudice that there are no lame verses in Saundarananda, and reflecting on what Ashvaghosha is really saying here on the basis of my own mainly stupidly unconscious, sometimes semi-conscious and very rarely conscious life, I think there is something in the juxtaposition of five dharmas and three movings. So I will change yesterday's verse accordingly, so as to retain the words "moved" and "movements," and I have translated the first line of today's verse so as to retain the sense that carantaH, "moving," is not only a description of the action of some supernatural beings in an ancient legend but also an expression of the essence of dharma here and now, in this ultimate reality, which is change....

... they whose essence is moving,
with the desire to know moving,
are moving...

Does it make sense? To FM Alexander I think it might have made sense.

EH Johnston:
As they whose very natures were informed with righteousness wandered over the world to enquire about its righteousness, they saw that king whose nature was righteous in such a high degree.

Linda Covill:
Moving over the earth with a wish to know its dharma, the dharma-beings saw this king whose nature was particularly given to dharma.

dharm'-aatmaanaH (nom. pl. m.): they whose essence was dharma
dharma: m. dharma, the law, etc.
aatmaan: m. breath, soul; essence , nature , character , peculiarity (often ifc. e.g. karmaatman , one whose character is action , endowed with principles of action , active , acting)
carantaH = nom. pl. m. pres. participle car: to move one's self , go , walk , move , stir , roam about , wander
te (nom. pl. m.): they

dharma-jijNaasayaa (inst. sg. f.): with the desire of knowing/investigating dharma
dharma: m. dharma, the law, etc.
jijNaasaa: n. desire of knowing , investigation
jagat (acc. sg.): n. that which moves or is alive ; n. the world , esp. this world , earth

dadRshur = 3rd pers. pl. perfect dRsh: to see, behold, notice
tam (acc. sg. m.): him
visheSheNa (ind.): exceedingly , especially , particularly

dharm'-aatmaanam (acc. sg. m.): he whose essence was dharma
dharma: m. dharma, the law, etc.
aatmaan: m. breath, soul; essence , nature , character , peculiarity
nar'-aadhipam (acc. sg. m.): king
nara: m. man, hero
adhipa: m. a ruler , commander , regent , king.

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