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Re: Attha.m hi naatho sara.na.m avoca

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  • Ong Yong Peng
    Dear Ven. Dhammanando and friends, thanks. I have a few questions: 1. Should mahesii (chief queen) be mahesi (great sage)? 2. As given on pg 114 of the book,
    Message 1 of 7 , May 1, 2005
      Dear Ven. Dhammanando and friends,

      thanks. I have a few questions:

      1. Should mahesii (chief queen) be mahesi (great sage)?

      2. As given on pg 114 of the book, lokahito is a Tappurisa:
      lokahito = lokassa+hito, beneficial to the world

      3. The subject of the first pair is hence:
      naatho lokahito mahesi: the Great Sage, the Protector,
      one who benefits the world.

      Therefore, the sentence would be:
      "Attha.m hi naatho sara.na.m avoca."
      "The meaning (is) truly the refuge," spoke the Protector.

      What do you think?


      metta,
      Yong Peng.

      --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Dhammanando Bhikkhu wrote:

      > "Attha.m hi naatho sara.na.m avoca."
      > meaning / indeed / lord / guide / spoke
      > "Meaning indeed (is) guide", spoke the Lord.

      The passage comes from the Ka`nkhaavitara.nii, Buddhaghosa's
      atthakathaa to the two Paatimokkhas. Its meaning will be
      clearer when the whole verse is given:

      attha.m hi naatho sara.na.m avoca
      na bya~njana.m lokahito mahesii

      "The meaning, not the letter, is truly the
      protector, the refuge, and the welfare of the
      world," said the Great Sage.


      tasmaa akatvaa ratimakkharesu
      atthe niveseyya mati.m mutiimaa ti

      Therefore, not delighting in the letters, the
      prudent man should apply his mind to the
      meaning.

      The first two lines might also be rendered:

      "The meaning, not the letter, is truly the
      refuge and welfare of the world," said the
      the Lord, the Great Sage.
    • Dhammanando Bhikkhu
      Dear Yong, ... Mahesii meaning the chief consort of a king and mahesii as an epithet of the Buddha are two different and unrelated words. The former is formed:
      Message 2 of 7 , May 2, 2005
        Dear Yong,

        > 1. Should mahesii (chief queen) be mahesi (great sage)?

        Mahesii meaning the chief consort of a king and mahesii as
        an epithet of the Buddha are two different and unrelated
        words. The former is formed:

        mahiiyatii ti "mahesii" -- "She is to be honoured, thus she is
        a mahesii"

        while the latter is formed: mahaa + isi = mahesii

        > 2. As given on pg 114 of the book, lokahito is a Tappurisa:
        > lokahito = lokassa+hito, beneficial to the world
        >

        > 3. The subject of the first pair is hence:
        > naatho lokahito mahesi: the Great Sage, the Protector,
        > one who benefits the world.

        Possibly, but I'm not sure. I am used to seeing lokahito in
        the dative form lokahitaaya, "for the benefit of the world".
        I don't know if it can also mean a person who benefits the
        world.

        > Therefore, the sentence would be:
        > "Attha.m hi naatho sara.na.m avoca."
        > "The meaning (is) truly the refuge," spoke the Protector.

        Yes, I think this is right. Concerning the first two lines
        as a whole, another possibility occurred to me. We could
        divide them into two sentences, and take avoca as a
        predicate that applies to the main subject of both of them.
        An ellipsis like this is not uncommon in Pali verse:

        attha.m hi naatho sara.na.m avoca
        na bya~njana.m lokahito mahesii

        "The meaning is truly the refuge," said the Lord;
        "It is not the letter that is the benefit for the world,"
        [said] the Great Sage.

        Best wishes,

        Dhammanando
      • Ong Yong Peng
        Dear Ven. Dhammanando, Gunnar and friends, thanks again. I shall reflect the changes in the solutions. I have a further question. bya~njana is a neuter noun,
        Message 3 of 7 , May 3, 2005
          Dear Ven. Dhammanando, Gunnar and friends,

          thanks again. I shall reflect the changes in the solutions.

          I have a further question. bya~njana is a neuter noun, if lokahita
          applies to bya~njana, it should have been bya~njana.m lokahita.m, am
          I correct?


          metta,
          Yong Peng.

          --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Dhammanando Bhikkhu wrote:

          > Therefore, the sentence would be:
          > "Attha.m hi naatho sara.na.m avoca."
          > "The meaning (is) truly the refuge," spoke the Protector.

          Yes, I think this is right. Concerning the first two lines as a
          whole, another possibility occurred to me. We could divide them into
          two sentences, and take avoca as a predicate that applies to the main
          subject of both of them. An ellipsis like this is not uncommon in
          Pali verse:

          attha.m hi naatho sara.na.m avoca
          na bya~njana.m lokahito mahesii

          "The meaning is truly the refuge," said the Lord; "It is not the
          letter that is the benefit for the world," [said] the Great Sage.
        • Dhammanando Bhikkhu
          Dear Yong, ... No. If bya~njana and lokahita are both taken to be nouns as in my suggested translation, there would be no call for them to agree in gender.
          Message 4 of 7 , May 11, 2005
            Dear Yong,

            > I have a further question. bya~njana is a neuter noun, if
            > lokahita applies to bya~njana, it should have been
            > bya~njana.m lokahita.m, am I correct?

            No. If bya~njana and lokahita are both taken to be nouns as
            in my suggested translation, there would be no call for them
            to agree in gender.

            Best wishes,

            Dhammanando
          • Ong Yong Peng
            Dear Ven. Dhammanando and friends, ... It seems like you are qualifying bya~njana.m with lokahito, but now I see you are not. It is just a way of putting it in
            Message 5 of 7 , May 12, 2005
              Dear Ven. Dhammanando and friends,

              Bhante: thanks again. I was referring to your sentence:

              > "The meaning is truly the refuge," said the Lord;
              > "It is not the letter that is the benefit for the world,"
              > [said] the Great Sage.

              It seems like you are qualifying bya~njana.m with lokahito, but now I
              see you are not. It is just a way of putting it in English. Thanks.


              metta,
              Yong Peng.

              --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Dhammanando Bhikkhu wrote:

              > I have a further question. bya~njana is a neuter noun,
              > if lokahita applies to bya~njana, it should have been
              > bya~njana.m lokahita.m, am I correct?

              No. If bya~njana and lokahita are both taken to be nouns as in my
              suggested translation, there would be no call for them to agree in
              gender.
            • Jim Anderson
              Dear Ven. Dhammanando and Yong Peng, ... I think Yong Peng is correct. I take it that lokahito refers to a person and is the agent of avoca . Here s the
              Message 6 of 7 , May 13, 2005
                Dear Ven. Dhammanando and Yong Peng,

                YP:
                > > I have a further question. bya~njana is a neuter noun,
                > > if lokahita applies to bya~njana, it should have been
                > > bya~njana.m lokahita.m, am I correct?

                Ven. Dhammanando:
                > No. If bya~njana and lokahita are both taken to be nouns as in my
                > suggested translation, there would be no call for them to agree in
                > gender.

                I think Yong Peng is correct. I take it that 'lokahito' refers to a
                person and is the agent of 'avoca'. Here's the verse again:

                attha.m hi naatho sara.na.m avoca
                na bya~njana.m lokahito mahesii

                My reading is as follows: 'attha.m', 'sara.na.m', and 'vya~njana.m'
                are all in the accusative singular and are objects of the
                verb 'avoca' whereas 'naatho, 'lokahito', and 'mahesii' are all in
                the nominative singular and are agents of the verb 'avoca'. A
                translation should go like this:

                For the Protector, the World's Benefactor, the Great Seer,
                Has said the meaning is the refuge, not the phrasing.

                Best wishes,
                Jim
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