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Abstract

The article discusses Bhāviveka’s Prajñāpradīpavṛtti and Avalokitavrata’s Prajñāpradīpaṭīkā commentaries on the “not without a cause” (nāpy ahetutaḥ) alternative of Nāgārjuna’s Mūlamadhyamakakārikā 1.1ab, from which it emerges that at least two distinct theories of causality can be attributed to the Lokāyata school. The first one is a physicalist theory that confines all causal relations within the sphere of material elements and is assimilated to accidentalism. The second one is a naturalist theory that attributes causal power to inner nature (svabhāva). The paper discusses the theoretical differences between these two approaches, considers Bhāviveka’s and Avalokitavrata’s counter-arguments and concludes that some of the conjectures that modern scholars have put forward on the relation between svabhāvavāda, accidentalism and Lokāyata should be revised.

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In: Indo-Iranian Journal
Free access
In: Indo-Iranian Journal
In: Indo-Iranian Journal
Free access
In: Indo-Iranian Journal

Abstract

The paper focuses on the 12th chapter of the *Saddharmaparikathā, a Buddhist homileticians’ guidebook containing sample sermons, dealing with the topic of gambling (dyūta). I edit, translate, and discuss the chapter with an introduction that includes a short overview of gambling in Sanskrit literature at large. The anonymous author is dismissive of gambling in all its forms, whether it is practised for material gain, for mere pleasure, and even if studied as an art. In spite of its exiguity, his discussion of the topic is, as far as we are aware, the most comprehensive in classical Buddhist literature.

Open Access
In: Indo-Iranian Journal

Abstract

This is the first notice, edition, and translation of a royal order in Sanskrit, engraved on a set of three copper-plates kept in the permanent collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The inscription is dated to the seventh year of the reign of Nannarāja I, king of the Pāṇḍuvaṃśin lineage active in Dakṣiṇa Kosala in the sixth and seventh centuries CE. The inscription provides important new information about a family of engravers, probably relocated from Śarabhapura to Sirpur, who served both the Śarabhapurīya and Pāṇḍuvaṃśin courts. The plates further suggest that Nannarāja I, as the first Pāṇḍuvaṃśin king of South Kosala, continued the epigraphic traditions of the Śarabhapurīyas, whom he may have served with his father Indrabala in his early career before the conflicts which brought him to power.

In: Indo-Iranian Journal
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In: Indo-Iranian Journal
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Abstract

In this paper I offer a solution to the meaning of the word triṣaptā́ḥ found at the beginning of the Atharvaveda (Śaunaka-Saṁhitā 1.1.1 ~ Paippalāda-Saṁhitā 1.6.1). After a discussion of the many previous attempts to understand the meaning of this term in this particular verse, I propose that triṣaptā́ḥ refers here to ‘three times seven’ breaths, that the speaker of the verse in question is a Brahmacārin, and that the sūkta as a whole is intended to be recited by this figure at his initiation. With these pieces of the puzzle in place, I argue, the remainder of the sūkta, including for instance the role of Vācaspati, is also much better understood.

In: Indo-Iranian Journal

Abstract

The single Chinese scroll comprised of manuscripts P 2893 (Paris) and Ch. 00265 (London) contains the Late Khotanese āyurvedic text conventionally titled Piṇḍaśāstra and so far unidentified in other languages. As a contribution to the interpretation of the text and to the knowledge of Khotanese medical terminology, the article offers two etymologies and reinterprets two ghostwords paying close attention to the contexts where they occur: (1) dūvara- ‘watery abdominal swelling, dropsy’ is a loanword from Gāndhārī *dag̱odara- < Old Indian dakodara- and, like Tibetan dmu rdzing, translates the Sanskrit general term udara- ‘abdominal swelling’; (2) the accusative plural pīrą̄nā and genitive plural pīrą̄nāṃ are from pirānaa- ‘worm grains’, a compound of pära- ‘worm’ and -ānaa- < Iranian *dāna-ka- ‘(single) grain, seed’, referring to the proglottids of tapeworms in excrement; (3) āvaṃjsä is not a hapax meaning ‘compact’ (Bailey) but should be read ā-v-aṃ jsä ‘or with them’; (4) bu’jsai is not a hapax meaning ‘fiery’ (Bailey) but the regular outcome of the Old Khotanese nominative plural buljse from buljsaā- ‘virtue’.

In: Indo-Iranian Journal