shubhataam ashubeShu kalpayan
avicakShaNa kiM na pashyasi
prakRtiM ca prabhavaM ca yoShitaaM
- - = - - = - = - =
- - = = - - = - = - -
- - = - - = - = - =
- - = = - - = - = - =
You are inventing beauty
In nails, teeth, skin, and hair long and short,
which are not beautiful.
Dullard! Do you not see
What women originally are made of
and what they originally are?
The striver's use here of the causative kalpayat from the root √klRp appears to be connected with the Buddha's use in Canto 13 of parikalpa, also from the root √klRp.
In five pivotal verses in Canto 13 I have translated parikalpa using the first definition of the word that the dictionary gives, which is fixing. Hence:
And yet the power of the senses, though operative, need not become glued to an object, / So long as in the mind, with regard to that object, no fixing goes on. // Where fuel and air co-exist, just as there a fire burns, / With an object and through fixing, so a fire of affliction arises. //For by the unreal means of fixing, one is bound to an object; / Seeing that very same object as it really is, one is set free. // On seeing one and the same form, this man is enamoured, that man disgusted; / Somebody else remains indifferent; while yet another feels thereto a human warmth. // Thus, an object is not the cause of bondage or of liberation; / It is due to specifically to fixing that sticking occurs or does not.// [13.49 - 13.54]
The dictionary also defines parikalpa (as a technical Buddhist term) as illusion, i.e. imagining, inventing. Hence:
And yet the power of the senses, though operative, need not become glued to an object, / So long as in the mind, with regard to that object, no imagining goes on. // Where fuel and air co-exist, just as there a fire burns, / With an object and through imagining, so a fire of affliction arises. // For by the unreal means of imagining, one is bound to an object; / Seeing that very same object as it really is, one is set free. // On seeing one and the same form, this man is enamoured, that man disgusted; / Somebody else remains indifferent; while yet another feels thereto a human warmth. // Thus, an object is not the cause of bondage or of liberation; / It is due to specifically to imagining that sticking occurs or does not.// [13.49 - 13.54]
Either of these versions makes sense. But which one is better?
Regular watchers of Harry Hill's TV Burp will at this point be inwardly shouting "FIGHT!"
In order to decide which version is better, one needs to sit back and reflect on the story of Saundara-nanda as a whole. By taking Nanda to see the most delectable nymphs in heaven, is it that the Buddha causes Nanda to stop imagining women to be beautiful and instead to see women as inherently ugly? Or is it rather that the Buddha causes Nanda to give up an idea about heaven?
Again, when a man gives up an idea, is the giving up a function of the imaginative aspect of his being, his top two inches? Or is the giving up a function of his whole being?
And before a person gives up an idea, how does a person get stuck? How does a person become bound to an object?
Is getting stuck a function of the whole being? Or is getting stuck a function of the imaginative part of the brain, the top-two inches?
Speaking for myself, when I get stuck I don't do it by half measures. I get well and truly stuck with my whole being.
So on the basis of that oft-repeated experience, which may be rooted in immature fear reflexes, I think that even if the striver seems to be singing from the same hymn sheet as the Buddha, he truly isn't.
In the striver's teaching, the original stuff of a woman is something ugly. In the Buddha's teaching, the original stuff of a woman is the Buddha-nature.
Nah. It wouldn't be any kind of contest.
The purity you see in nails, teeth, skin and hair which are impure is nothing but imagination on your part. Do you not see, you simpleton, the real nature and origin of woman?
You are imagining a pure beauty in impure nails, teeth, skin and long hair. You blind fool, can't you see the natural state of women and what they come from?
shubhataam (acc. sg. f.): beauty, purity
shubha: mfn. splendid , bright , beautiful ; auspicious ; agreeable ; pure
- taa: (abstract noun suffix)
ashubeShu (loc. pl. n.): mfn. not beautiful or agreeable , disagreeable ; inauspicious ; impure
kalpayat = nom./acc. sg. m. causative pres. part. klRp: to set in order; to fix ; to frame , form , invent , compose (as a poem &c ) , imagine
nakha-danta-tvaca-kesha-romasu (loc. pl.): in nails, teeth, skin, and hair long and short
kesha: m. the hair of the head
roman: n. the hair on the body of men and animals , (esp.) short hair , bristles , wool , down , nap &c (less properly applicable to the long hair on the head and beard of men , and to that of the mane and tail of animals)
avicakShaNa (voc. sg.): mfn. not discerning , not clever , ignorant
vicakShaNa: mfn. bright; clear-sighted (lit. and fig.) , sagacious , clever , wise , experienced
kiM na: how not?
pashyasi = 2nd pers. sg. pash: to see
prakRtim (acc. sg.): f. " making or placing before or at first " , the original or natural form or condition of anything ; nature , character , constitution , temper , disposition
prabhavam (acc. sg.): m. production , source , origin , cause of existence, birthplace
yoShitaam (gen. pl.): f. woman