Framing the Mahabharata by Saikat K Bose

Framing the Mahabharata by Saikat K Bose

Author:Saikat K Bose
Language: eng
Format: epub
Publisher: Book Network Int'l Limited trading as NBN International (NBNi)
Published: 2018-02-23T16:00:00+00:00

1 Yardi, The Mahabharata, p. 3.

2 ṚV, X: 16.1—‘Do not burn entirely, Agni, or engulf him in your flames. Do not consume his skin, or his flesh’. Also see W.D. O’Flaherty, The Rig Veda: An Anthology 108 Hymns Translated from the Sanskrit, Harmondsworth, Penguin Classics, 1981, p. 49.

3 The story of the house being burnt one rainy night when a few destitute people had taken shelter in it, their charred remains assuring the Kuru that the Pandu had really got burnt, are part of the later additions.

4 Mbh, VII: 19.16; 161.5; 157.30. This is another case of blind redaction.

5 There are other issues with the lists. With the original meaning of Tāmara in the northern list lost, redactors substituted it with Tomara, a historical people from medieval times. A closer etymological fit would however have been Ḍāmara, the Kashmiri feudal elite. Similarly, in the Critical Edition, Professor Franklin Edgerton replaced Aṭavī with Antakhi, which to him implied Antioch, though he does acknowledge that it was no more than a personal speculation.

6 Mbh, II: 19.19.

7 Raychaudhuri, Political History, p, 13; also Mbh, Ādiparva, 95.42

8 Raychaudhuri, Political History, p. 13. Mbh, I: 94.54–55. Raychaudhuri points out that the name of four sons of the Vedic Parīkṣit, only three appear in this list, Śrutasena being absent; even Janamejaya is missed out in the Java text.

9 Asko Parpola, ‘Pandaiη and Sītā: On the Historical Background of the Sanskrit Epics’, Journal of the American Oriental Society, vol. 122, no. 2, Indic and Iranian Studies in Honor of Stanley Insler on His Sixty-Fifth Birthday, April–June 2002, pp. 361–373.

10 U.S. Moorti, The Megalithic Culture of South India: Socio-Economic Perspectives, Varanasi, 1994, pp. 4–5. Moorti has identified more than 600 in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu alone.

11 Parpola, ‘Pandaiη’, p. 362.

12 IA, XIII, pp. 331, 349.

13 Mbh, IV: 5.27–29, and J.L. Brockington, The Sanskrit Epics, Brill, 1998, p. 227. Also see Karlene Jones–Bley, ‘Sintashta Burials and their Western European Counterparts’, in Davis–Kimball et all (eds.), Kurgans, Ritual Sites and Settlements, pp. 126–134. It must also be remembered that while exposure is the norm among Tibetans, under special circumstances other methods were adopted, like earth or water burial.

14 See ṚV, X: 16.1 for what appears to be partial cremation. Also, ṚV, X: 18.11. ‘open up, earth; do not crush him. Be easy for him to enter and to burrow in. Earth, wrap him up as a mother wraps a son in the edge of her skirt’, see O’Flaherty, The Rig Veda: An Anthology, p. 53. Differences in funerary customs are noted elsewhere. In ŚB, xii.8.1.5, Kuru–Pañcāla built small square mounds about a yard high, with internal chambers, while ‘easterners and others’ made round graves called Asurya or daemonic. Such barrow graves, some of which have been found at places like Laurya on the Nepalese border, have a great affinity with the Buddhist stūpa and Kurgan grave mounds.

15 Mbh, II: 23–29. and early northern Buddhist texts (cf. Weber 1853: 403).

16 Hopkins, ‘Ruling Caste’, p. 354.

17 Even Yudhiṣṭhira cites precedence to Drupada for the decision, Mbh, I: 195.


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