Monday, June 09, 2008

#088, Ambarisha- Bring the sacrificial animal or a man in lieu thereof

1-61-8, Sanskrit verse
Praayaha cittam mahat hi
eetat naram vaa purusharshabha
aanayasva pas`um siighram
yaavat karma pravarttatee.

Aanayasva = Bring.
Naram va = Or a man

CONTEXTAmbarisha, the great grand father of Rama started a sacrifice. Indra, the God of Heavens stole the sacrificial animal. The Priests advise the king to get a human being as a sacrificial animal.

"O Great among men! You have to make amendments for your omission (of not properly guarding the sacrificial animal) Either you bring the sacrificial animal or a man in lieu thereof."

*According to Mahabhagavata, Ambarisha was a great devotee of Lord Vishnu.
*In Ramayana, Ambarisha ends upto a human-sacrificer.
*Not barbaric?
*What type of priest/sage was Vasisht`ha who presided over the sacrifice?

In this sacrifice, the man Shunashepa did not lose his life, because sage Visvamitra saved him by teaching two hymns to please the Gods. Here Visvamitra acted as a gentleman and savior.

*But in Bhagavata, the sacrificial man, same Shunashepa lost his life. There sage Visvamitra worked as hoota (person who drops sacrificial flesh in the pyre). Click. Harischandra was the King who sacrificed him.
This Harischandra was a lier. But he was depicted as a great adherent of truth in Markand`eya Purana.


vitahavya said...

are you being economical with truth? naram (man) va (or) purusharshabha. the qualifier :or: points to one other choice of animal - purusharshabha which is uncastrated ox. why didn't you mention this?

Anonymous said...

you should read 'ramayaNa vishavRuksham' a telugu book by Muppalla Ranganayakamma.
you'll get more ideas on how to tear away valmiki ramayana

ybr said...

To Shri vItahavya: Thank u. I might have missed. Or we can take another meaning: purusharshabha = bull among men. Uncastrated bulls used to be slaughtered in hundreds of numbers inancient sacrifices. Hence, an uncastrated bull may not have a substitute value, because it has routine value. Horses have special values because they were scarce and praised possessions, and asking somebody to bring a human as sacrificial animal should immediately ring alarm bells in our mind. That idea should never have occurred in athvaryu's (administrator's) mind who was supposed to be a purified person. Imagine hundreds of bulls being made headless with large swords, quite bizarre. Hence, when vasishTha calls for man or bull, the very idea must immediately repel us.

Shri anonymous: I have read all the volumes of ramAyaNa vishavriksham Telugu edition. It has lengthy analyses and discussions. Ms. ranganAyakamma has not given original vAlmiki verses as proof. I feel that readers must study all the original verses of vAlmiki Sanskiita rAmAyana, instead of relying on second hand analyses made by me or Ms. ranganAyakamma. I invite my readers to question me intensely and not to believe me blindly. Ms. RanganAyakamma's approach is Marxist. My approach is comparison of theory and practice. Example: If vAlmiki says that rAma is a king and that he can consume n.v. at his will and pleasure, I shall not question. But if vAlmiki says that rAma promised to live like a muni surviving on fruits and tubers, and he announces it to kausalya, guha and others and, the very next day three SRL eat four deer, it becomes questionable. As long as there is no conflict between what is preached and practised, I shall not bother. It is what we call transparency. When the Central Information Commissioner wants political parties in India to furnish information under RTI Act and CPM party wants to hide themselves, then suspicion will start. Gandhiji called this agreement-harmony-consonance among thought-speech-and-action, trikaraNa Suddhi.