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Devi Mahatmya (The Crystallization of The Goddess Tradition)

Devi Mahatmya (The Crystallization of The Goddess Tradition)
25.50
Item Code: NAB315
Author: THOMAS B. COBURN
Publisher: Motilal Banarsidass Publishers Pvt. Ltd.
Edition: 2002
ISBN: 8120805577
Pages: 375
Cover: Hardcover
Other Details: 8.8" X 5.8"

About the Book:

    The Devi-Mahatmya is well-known to both devotees and scholars of the Indian Great Goddess. Composed some 1500 years ago, it is the first comprehensive account of the Goddess in Sanskrit, and it has maintained its centrality in the Goddess (Sakta) tradition to the present day. Like so much in that tradition, however, the text has until now resisted careful study from an historical perspective. It is this study that the present volume accomplishes

    The central task here is to explore how an anonymous Sanskrit text articulates a view of ultimate reality as feminine then there is virtually no precedent in the Sanskrit tradition for such a view. To accomplish this task, an appropriate method of scriptural analysis is developed. This involves an examination of Hindu understanding of the Puranas in general, and in general, and of the Devi-Mahatmya in particular along with consideration of several recent scholarly discussions, in India and elsewhere. Subsequently, a comprehensive inquiry into the Goddess's epithets in this text is undertaken, followed by examination of the earlier history of the myths that the Devi-Mahatmya associates with her. The study culminates in translations of the text's hymns, which are annotated so as to indicate the synthesis that is here being accomplished. The resulting illumination of Sanskritized form of Goddess worship is what Daniel H. H. Ingalls calls in his Foreword "a notable scholarly achievement."

About the Author:

THOMAS B. COBURN is the Charles A. Dana Professor of Religious Studies has many academic works to his credit. In addition to Devi Mahatmaya, he is the author of Encountering the Goddess: A Translation of the Devi Mahatmya and A Study of its Interpretation, as well as numerous articles on Indian and comparative topics.

Cover Photograph:

The Cover photograph is of an eighth century Pallava sculpture, Durga as the slayer of the buffalo demon (Mahisa), and is reproduced with courtesy of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Denman W. Ross Collection. It shows the Goddess standing on the severed head of her antagonist and displaying the weapons with which she was armed by the host of male deities (Devi-Mahatmya, chapter two). Her lower right arm, now missing, was probable raised in the abhaya (Fear-not) gesture, while her other right arms hold sword, arrow and discus. Her left arms carry shield, conch, and bow, and over her shoulders are visible two quivers and trident.

Contents

Foreword - Daniel H. H. Ingalls

Acknowledgements

Abbreviations

PROLEGOMENON

  1. Introduction
  2. "Sanskritization"
  3. The Puranas: Their Nature and Study
  4. The Devi-Mahatmya: A Purana, a Portion of a Purana, or "Purana"?
  5. The Dynamics of Composition and the Structure of this Study

PART I: THE EPITHETS

    candika
    candika
    ambika
    narayani
    kali
    bhagavati
    durga
    vaisnavi
    mahamaya bhavati
    nitya
    aindri
    parama
    camunda
    sivaduti
    Isvari
    siva
    sthita
    kaumari
    mahesvari
    brahmani
    sakti
    gauri
    laksmi
    varada
    buddhi
    lajja
    paramesvari

    svadha-svaha
    sri
    sraddha
    kalyani
    isa
    parvati
    prakrti
    katyayani
    mahavidya-vidya
    varahi
    bhadrakali
    yoganidra-nidra
    visnumaya
    sanatani
    mahadevi
    visvesvari
    muktihetu

      bhadra-aparajita-alaksmi-maharatri
    amba
    medha-pusti-santi-ksanti-tusti
    krsna-tamasi
    dhatri-jagaddhatri
    narasimhi
    mahamari
PART II: THE MYTHS
  1. Madhu and Kaitabha
  2. Mahisa
  3. Sumbha and Nisumbha
  4. A Preliminary Integration: The Vamana Purana Account

PART III: THE HYMNS

  1. From the Rg Veda
    A. The Vag Ambhrni Sukta
    B. The Ratri Sukta
  2. From the Rg Veda Khila
    C. The Sri Sukta
    D. The Ratri Khila
  3. From the Mahabharata
    E. The Durga Stava
    F. The Durga Stotra
  4. From the Harivamsa
    G. Visnu's praise of Nidra
    H. Pradyumna's Hymn
    I. Aniruddha's Hymn
  5. From the Devi-Mahatmya
    J. Brahma-stuti
    K. Sakradi-stuti
    L. The "Ya Devi" Hymn
    M. Narayani-stuti
CONCLUSION

APPENDICES

    Appendix A: The Seven Little Mothers
    Appendix B: Correlation of Epithets and Myths according to Episode
BIBLIOGRAPHY

INDEX

Of Related Interest :

Conception and Evolution of The Mother Goddess in India

Shakti - Power and Femininity in Indian Art

Durga - Narrative Art of an 'Independent' Warrior Goddess

Mother Goddess as Kali - The Feminine Force in Indian Art

The Srimad Devi Bhagavatam

A Collection of Devi Sculptures

Paintings of the Devi

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