Friday, June 24, 2016

841. Nyayavali --- Maxims and Proverbs…….!

A maxim is a way of conveying the universal truth. Every language has proverbs which are related with when the situation arises. Nyayavali is the compilation of Sanskrit maxims and proverbs that are used to sum up an event, situation or circumstance. Many of them are taken from stories with animals, birds and humans as characters. There are some which are collected and posted in this blog.

1. Simhavalokana nyaya. (Maxim of the lion's glance).

A lion takes a few steps and stops to look back and glance, every wise person always looks back at the past in order to mould a better future.

2. Andha pangu nyaya. (Maxim of the blind and the lame).

A lame man sits on the shoulders of a blind man and guides the blind. Here it is a show the interdependence amongst men and the good that might result from cooperation and union.

3. Amurttamurtti nyaya. (Maxim of the Form of the Formless).

God is omnipresent and so some worship Him in a Bimba form also though they believe He is formless. In order to satisfy the cravings of his heart for an image he place a form in the alter but few ignorant men say that he is worshipping an external material object. In this maxim is used to correct a remark on a profound subject which one doesn't understand but display it due to utter ignorance.

4. Andha cataka nyaya. (Maxim of the blind man catching a sparrow).

Here this maxim mentions of coincidence of a blind person catching a sparrow, when an unexpected happens it is attributed to divine agency.

5. Adagdha dahana nyaya. (Maxim of burning the already burnt).

Fire fails to burn a thoroughly burnt object. This maxim is used when a person attempts to do an impossible or a fruitless task.

6. Aranya rodana nyaya. (Maxim of crying in the wilderness).

There is no one to hear the cries in the forest. This is to indicate that nothing is going to help a man who seeks support from a quarter from where nothing is likely to aid. Many feel this is the case that happens in government office if not bribed the officer.

7. Andha parampara nyaya. (Maxim of the blind leading the blind).

Where will a blind lead another blind to? This is mostly use in spiritual circle when the self-styled Guru misleads his followers by misquoting the scriptures.

8. Apanthanam tu gacchantam iti nyaya. (Maxim of a following a wrong person).

This is in justification to the maxim above when a person is not lead one in a proper way it is better to un-follow him. 

9. Arddha jarata nyaya. (Maxim of the two extremes in a single substance).

Here the two extremes are considered and pointed to the impossibility of two opposite attributes to be present in the same individual at the same time as a person cannot be good and evil at the same point.

10. Sailusa nyaya. (Maxim of an actress on the stage).

This is to denote that an actress even though appears on the stage in various costumes none of them are with her real form, this maxim is used to denote that this is all a make believe world.

11. Rajjusarpa nyaya. (Maxim of the cord and the serpent).

Widely used maxim by Advaitins; mistaking a cord at night to be serpent by delusion. This denotes the false impression under which we are seen to experience sometimes.

12. Samudravrstim nyaya. (Maxim of the sea and rain).

When there is supply of a thing to one who is in the least need of it. Like what is the use of rain when it falls on the sea???

13. Arrdha tyajati pandita iti nyaya. (Maxim of saving one half).

This maxim says a wise person who is likely to lose all will sacrifice one half in order to save the other half. In case of a difficult delivery mother is saved by sacrificing the baby in the womb.

14. Anda kukkutta nyaya. (Maxim of the hen and the eggs).

This is the story of Goose and Golden Egg. An individual will become a loser on account of his avariciousness.

15. Iksuvikara nyaya. (Maxim of transformation of sugarcane).

Gradual progress is mentioned in this maxim. Sugarcane is first crushed and the juice extracted, then juice is boiled to make jaggery.

16. Andha darpana nyaya. (Maxim of the blind man and his mirror).

What is the use of a mirror to the blind person; this is to indicate that it is worthless for a person to possess things which can be of no use to him.

17. Iksurasa nyaya. (Maxim of extracting juice from sugarcane).

Here the efforts is indicated as the first step to get the benefit, one has to struggle hard initially is what this maxim points to.

18. Mandukatolana nyaya. (Maxim of weighing a frog).

It is very difficult to make a frog remain steady on the pan of a weighting scale and it is equally difficult to keep a fickle minded person to remain steadfast any pursuit.

19. Ghatapradapa nyaya. (Maxim of a lamp in a jar).

Knowledge kept for oneself is like placing a lamp in the jar. When the lamp is kept in the jar only the inside of the jar is bright when the room is dark.

20. Ustrakantakabhaksana nyaya. (Maxim of a camel eating a thorny plant).

This maxim talk of sense gratification a camel likes to eat leaves from thorny plants unmindful of the injuries it may have to endure. Our sense also does not worry of the consequences as it is intoxicated with the pleasure from it.

21. Svapnavyaghra nyaya. (Maxim seeing a tiger in a dream).

What will a tiger in the dream do when after the person is awake, this maxim is used to indicate the unsubstantial and worthless nature of an imaginary dread just as the fear of the tiger dreamt in sleep is quite worthless?

22. Ya kurute sa bhunkte iti nyaya. (Maxim of the doer and the enjoyer).

This maxim denotes that he who does labour enjoys the fruit derived from it.

23. Naunavika nyaya. (Maxim of the boat and the boatman).

Boat cannot be steered without the help of the boatman, like wise no act, great or small, can be performed without the guidance of the head.

24. Latavrksa nyaya. (Maxim of trees and creepers).

A creeper takes the help of the tree to climb up and reach for the Sun’s rays, likewise less fortunate take the help of fortunate.

25. Parvatopatyaka nyaya. (Maxim of a valley).

It is easy to get down from the hill to go to valley though scaling was difficult. Getting down from values is easy to build values is hard.

26. Vrahibaja nyaya. (Maxim of the rice grain and paddy).

One paddy has every chance of its propagation; just as from one single paddy the granaries can be filled. One good thought can grow and develop to be many.

These are only a few selected maxims compiled here. There are many many many more one can visit this web site and read more of them:

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