July 13, 2021
July 04, 2021
If we do a search in the BuddhaNexus, we would find a couple of occurrences of the grammatical expression yin byed kyi mtha’ can, that occurs in some śabdaśāstras and pramāṇaśāstras. It is also used by Rong-zom-pa. This must refer to a kind of Sanskrit suffix. It occurs in the context of taddhitapratyaya (de la phan pa’i rkyen) “secondary suffix” and kṛtpratyaya (byed pa’i rkyen) “primary suffix.” Some sources mention yin byed kyi rkyen. We may, for now, take rkyen and mtha’ to be synonymous. This can be deduced from the use of the expressions kṛtpratyaya and kṛdanta. For the want of a better suggestion, I am considering if yin byed kyi mtha’/rkyen is a Tibetan rendering of bhāvapratyaya, which has been translated elsewhere as dngos po’i rkyen. In Rong-zom-pa’s case, the term yin byed kyi mtha’ can should not be understood as the suffix itself but as referring to a word with this suffix. If this holds, the term yin byed kyi mtha’ can may be translated as “a [word] that possesses being-making/causing suffix.” This bhāvapratyaya is said to be an “abstraction/nominalizing suffix” (i.e. tva or tā).
May 24, 2021
May 17, 2021
May 06, 2021
First I reproduce verbatim from Merriam-Webster’s: “William Shakespeare often used hendiadys. For example, his character Macbeth, speaking of the passage of life, says ‘It is a tale / Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, / Signifying nothing.’ For Shakespeare, the construction ‘sound and fury’ was more effective than ‘furious sound.’ The word hendiadys is a modification of the Greek phrase hen dia dyoin. Given that hen dia dyoin literally means ‘one through two,’ it’s a perfect parent for a word that describes the expression of a single concept using two words, as in the phrase ‘rough and tough.’ As you can imagine, hendiadys is a common element in everyday speech and writing.”
Michael Hahn, “Striving for Perfection: On the Various Ways of Translating Sanskrit into Tibetan.” Pacific World 3 (9), 2007, pp. 123–149. On p. 139, Hahn speaks of this figure of speech called “hendiadys.”
I wish to add some of my own examples in Tibetan: sangs rgyas, byang chub, zhe sdang, ’dod chags, skam chags, etc. There would be many more.
March 24, 2021
Not all unavailable works maybe non-existent.
1. What is known as the bKa’ chems ka khol ma is also called the bKa’ chems me tog phreng ba (Ka khol ma, p. 315). It is also called the rGyal po’i bka’ chems (Ka khol ma, p. 319). This is extant. The textual history seems very complicated.
2. The Dar dkar gsal ba’i me long is said to be composed by queens. It is mentioned in the Ka khol ma (p. 315). It is also mentioned by Nyang ral (p. 244). He seems to have seen the work. Noticed and discussed by van der Kuijp (Genre). See also Martin 2020: pp. 43–44, 635–636, 639, etc. The Dar dkar gsal ba’i me long is not known to exist.
3. Zla ba ’dod ’jo. Said to be composed by ministers. Not known to exist. It is mentioned in the Ka khol ma (p. 315). It is also mentioned by Nyang ral (p. 244): Zla ba’i ’dod ’jo. He seems to have seen the work. Noticed and discussed by van der Kuijp (Genre). See also Martin 2020: pp. 43–44, 635–636, 639, etc.
4. U rgyan gling pa’s rGyal po’i bka’ thang, Blon po’i bka’ thang, bTsun mo’i bka’ thang, etc. may have been inspired/influenced by or somehow related to the rGyal po’i bka’ chems, Blon po’i bka’ chems, bTsun mo’i bka’ chems, etc.
5. Tshe tan zhabs drung (Thon mi’i zhal lung, pp. 4, 9, 11) alludes to a certain Dam chos glegs bam sgrub tshul by Bod mkhas pa. But evidently he did not have access to it for he is citing from a work (i.e. Yi ge’i bshad pa) by mDo mkhar ba Tshe ring dbang rgyal. TBRC does not seem to have it. It must be an interesting work and is yet to be discovered?
6. Addendum: Yes, see Martin 2020: pp. 43–44, 635–636, 639, etc.
February 13, 2021
June 13, 2020
In the Mūlasarvāstivāda narrative sources, there is a story of Suśroṇī, a queen who takes a musician and then a robber as her lover (Panglung 1981: 193–194). Panglung usually provides the Tibetan renderings of the Sanskrit names. But not for Suśroṇī. The BHSD, SWTF, TSD, and so on, do not seem to record this name. Rockhill 1884 (p. 82), whoever, records “Sho shum” as a Tibetan rendering of “Suśroṇī” and also points out that it is not a literal rendering. Literally it should mean something like “having beautiful hips” (MW). And indeed one can see in other contexts (Tshig mdzod chen mo) that the rendering sked legs ma in the sense of a “beautiful woman” (bud med mdzes ma) and “goddess” (lha’i bu mo), which is probably a literal rendering of suśroṇī. But the meaning of sho shum is not clear. Possibly sho shum is a mimetic word, comparable to ’khyug ’khyug and ldem ldem, which describes the movement and hence meaning something like “having graceful movements/gait.” The meaning of the expression ’dar shum shum (Tshig mdzod chen mo) as “a certain way of moving [one’s] body” (gzugs po g.yo tshul zhig) may support such a speculation. If this speculation holds, we shall have to consider sho shum and shum shum simply as phonetic variants and suppose that the Tibetan translators interpreted that “one who has beautiful hips” is also “one who has graceful movements/gait.” One should also perhaps consider the words shom ra (byued) and shom can (Jäschke 1881: s.v. shom pa).