January 13, 2014

མཐང་། ཐང་།

Just the other day, I came to think about the term mthang gos (more popularly known as sham thabs), one of the three robes (chos gos rnam gsum) of a person ordained in the Vinayic order. I, personally, did not know before the word mthang except in this context, and started wondering about the meaning of mthang. Now I learn that mthang means “lower part of the body” and hence mthang gos literally would mean “robe for the lower part of the body” and is opposed to bla gos which would mean “robe for the upper part of the body.” The Tshig mdzod chen mo has some more words such as mthang sprad pa “to copulate.” Otherwise, it seems the word mthang rarely occurs. But could it be that words mthang and thang (in the sense of “plain” or “low-lying flat area”) are somehow related?


  1. Thinking to change the subject, what do you think of those words like brdar and bdar and gdar that I'm thinking could have something to do with dar?

  2. A very interesting thought that did not occur to me yet. Let us devote an entry on it.