ध्वन्यालोक: Dhvanyaaloka – Summary of Lectures by Dr. H.V. Nagaraja Rao (2015)

ध्वन्यालोक: – KSOU MA 2nd year

Introduction — Here is the summary from the lectures by Dr. H.V.Nagaraja Rao on Dhvanyaaloka  by Ananda Vardhana. This is conducted as part of the contact programme in the year 2015 for the MA Final Year students. This material is prepared by me based on the recordings.

<Start of First session>

स्वेच्छाकेसरिणः स्वच्छस्वच्छायायासितेन्दवः |

त्रायन्तां वो मधुरिपोः प्रपन्नार्तिच्छिदो नखाः ||

This is the first shloka of Dhvanyaaloka .

Dhvanyaaloka  ध्वन्यालोकः

This is the light of Dhvani. The ग्रन्तकार is explaining what Dhvani is. This book also has another name called सहृदयालोकः | समानं हृदयं यस्य सः सहृदयः | Only a person having the same interests will be able to appreciate and enjoy the poetry. Abhinava Gupta wrote the commentary called Lochana for this Dhvanyaaloka  written by Anandavardhana. येषां काव्यानुशीलनाभ्यासवशाद्विशदीभूते मनोमुकुरे वर्णनीयतन्मयीभवनयोग्यता ते स्वहृदयसंवादभाजः सहृदयाः | Abhinava Gupta gives this definition for the term सहृदयाः. Different types of poetry are to be studied. Then the mind will start reflecting clearly like a mirror. In such a state, the purport of the Kaavya will be understood. The similarity in heart will be achieved then. Such a person is called a सहृदयः. This book shows light to such Sahrudayas and it is also called Sahrudayaaloka.

Write an essay on the Life and works of Anandavardhana

आनन्दवर्धनः कस्य नासीत् आनन्दवर्धनः | Whose Ananda did Anandavardhana fail to increase? In our country, the centre of all Shaastric studies has been Kashmir. 8th century to 11th century, all the great thoughts, be it in Nyaya, or Alamkaara or Naatya, originated from Kashmir. Anandavardhana also is from Kashmir. Only in Kashmir the title of “राजानक” is awarded. Anandavardhana had that title. आनक is the drum. The poet who makes the fame of the king be known everywhere gets awarded with this title. Anandavardhana lived in the second half of 9th century. Kalhana’s Rajatarangini is a metrical legendary and historical chronicle of the north-western Indian subcontinent, particularly about the kings of Kashmir. It was written in Sanskrit by Kashmiri Brahman Kalhana in the 12th century CE. While describing the king’s rule, he also mentions the poets that adorned their courts and the works produced by them. A king named King Avantivarma is mentioned in this Raajatarangini to have been ruled in the later half of 9th century. He wrote – मुक्ताकणः शिवस्वामी कविरानन्दवर्धनः । प्रथां रत्नाकराश्चागात् साम्राज्येऽवन्तिवर्मणः ॥ In King Avantivarma’s court, these poets were present – Muktaakana, Shivasvaami, Kavi Aanandavardhana and Ratnaakara.

Anandavardhana was an expert in Sanskrit and Prakruti languages. While citing examples in Dhavanyaaloka, he would quote from his own works. “यथा मम विषमभानलीलायाम्” – For example, he would state “As mentioned in my work – Vishama Bhaana Leela” and cite the example. Vishama Bhaana Leela has been written in Prakruta. His other works are अर्जुनचरितम् – a mahaakavya, तत्त्वालोक – a dharshanika granta – a philosophical treatise, Vishama Bhaana Leela,  धर्मोत्तार्त्विवृति – Dharmottartvivrti – a Buddhist doctrine and a poem called देविशतकम् | Among the works of Anandavardhana, only Dhvanyaaloka  and Devishatakam are available now. 100 shlokas on Devi was written by him as ordained by Devi who came in his dreams. This work comprises of beautiful shabdaalamkaara with the word Saraswati. देव्या स्वप्नोद्गमादिष्ट-देवीशतक-संज्ञया देशितो अनुपमामादात् अथ नोणसुतो नुतिम्  There he refers to himself as नोणसुतः  – so his father’s name is Nona.

Abhinava Gupta has written the commentary for this work by name Lochana. He also wrote the commentary called Abhinava Bharati for the Bharata’s Naatya Shaastra. Dhvanyaaloka  is the light of Dhvani. Since the light will be useful only when there are eyes, he has named his commentary appropriately as Lochana or eyes. किं लोचनं विनालोको भाति चन्द्रिकयापि हि । i.e., लोचनं विना आलोकः भाति किम्?

Even before Abhinava Gupta’s Lochana, there was another commentary by someone in Anandavardhana’s lineage itself and this work was called Chandrikaa or splendor. Hence Abhinava Gupta includes चन्द्रिकया अपि हि – even by using Chandrikaa |

The words of common people just convey one meaning. But the words of great poets continue to resonate in our hearts and give numerous meanings as one reflects on it. He does not say it explicitly. Yet these meanings appear in the minds of the readers. This is called Dhvani. The true pleasure is experienced when the reader realizes something that is not explicitly stated. For that, the readers need to be eligible – be knowledgeable to understand the hidden message. John Keats says “Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard are sweeter”. The readers should develop that sense of understanding the untold meaning.

Prior to Anandavardhana, the focus was only on the superfluous decorations of Kaavya like the Alamkaara. Then the focus changed to Guna. For the object without the soul, whatever is the decoration done, it will like the decoration done for the dead body.  अलम् means पूर्णम्. That which is done to make a thing complete is the Alamkaara – अलं करोति इति अलंकारः | It makes sense only to beautify something that has a life. Vaamana was the first one to think about the soul of poetry. He wrote Kaavyaalamkaara Sutras. He stated “रितिरात्मा काव्यस्य”. There were further debates on the soul of poetry. Anandavardhana proposed Dhvani as the soul of poetry.

[Side note: In those days, only when the verses taught earlier were memorized, the next set of verses will be taught. There is pushtakastha vidya and mastakastha vidya. In mastakastha vidya, the knowledge stays in the head rather than in the book].

काव्यस्यात्मा ध्वनिरिति बुधैर्यः समाम्नातपूर्व-
स्तस्याभावं जगदुरपरे भाक्तमाहुस्तमन्ये |
केचिद्वाचाम् स्थितमविषये तत्त्वमूचुस्तदीयम्
तेन ब्रूमः सहृदयमनःप्रीतये तत्स्वरूपम् || १ ||

काव्यस्य आत्मा ध्वनि: इति बुधै: य: समाम्नातपूर्व:
तस्य अभावं जगदु: अपरे भाक्तम् आहु: तम् अन्ये |
केचित् वाचाम् स्थितम् अविषये तत्त्वमूचु: तदीयम्
तेन ब्रूमः सहृदयमनःप्रीतये तत्स्वरूपम् || १ ||

Dhvani (ध्वनि:) was declared (समाम्नातम्) to be the soul of poetry (काव्यस्यात्मा) by learned persons (बुधै:) of yore (पूर्वै: ). All the same, some would refute its existence (तस्य अभावं जगदु: अपरे); some would consider it as something that could be logically implied (भाक्तम् आहु: तम् अन्ये); some others speak of its presence as being beyond the provision of expression (केचित् वाचाम् स्थितम् अविषये). Hence, we hereby intend explaining (तेन ब्रूमः ) what its nature (तत्  स्वरूपम्) is so as to cause delight to the hearts of sympathetic critics (सहृदय+मनः+प्रीतये).

That meaning which is indirectly suggested is Dhvani and that is the soul of poetry. This is not something that I am telling on my own. This was declared by the earlier poets itself. He clarifies the need for his work, if it is something that is already stated by earlier poets. There are people who do not accept its existence – तस्य अभावं जगदु: अपरे | They say that they have analyzed the poems and found word, meanings, alamkaaras or figures of speech, gunas, reeti, etc. (This is similar to saying that on dissecting the body, there have been internal organs that have been identified but not the soul).

There are others that say this Dhvani should be some form of Bhakti – भक्तेः परिणामं भाक्तम् | Here Bhakti is लक्षणा वृत्तिः | The primary power of the word to convey a meaning is called अभिधा. The primary meaning is शक्तिः. In some cases, we indicate a meaning which is different from the primary meaning. For example, when we say that a person is Mercury, it indicates certain quality of Mercury like being very brisk and active. In this case, the primary meaning is not taken. This secondary meaning is called लक्षणार्थः. The famous example is गङ्गायां घोषः | It means – आभीरपल्ली – the hamlet of cowherds. A person is selling milk and milk products. A housewife enquires “भद्रा! क्व ते घोषः ?” The milkman says “अम्ब! गङ्गायां घोषः”. Since the housewife wants to know if the person’s village is having good water resource which would result in a fertile land causing the cows to give good quality milk, the milkman gives an apt reply that his village is in the Ganges. Though he mentions only Ganga, it is understood as “गङ्गातीरे”. The power of the word to indicate a secondary meaning which is different from the primary meaning is called लक्षणा. Another term for it is भक्ति. The followers of the Bhakti theory are Bhaaktas. They say that Dhvani is not something other than Bhakti.

There is a third group which says that the poets would write some great poetry without realizing the beautifying factor. Later, they themselves will realize the significance of the words that they use. The poetry should be enjoyed. We should not analyze how the pleasure is explained.

[Side note: U.R. Anantamoorthy wrote the story called Samskaara which was made into a kannada movie. There is a shudra boy who is called putta. Actually, this putta is the modified version of पुत्र. The author mentioned in his commentary that he did not consciously use that term in this sense. Someone had pointed out it later to him].

इक्षु-क्षीर-घुडादीनां मादुर्यस्य अन्तरं महत् तथापि नतदाख्यातुं सरस्वत्यापि शक्यते | There is a huge difference in the tastes of sugarcane, milk and jaggery. But even Saraswati will not be able to describe it in words.

The third group says that the pleasure experienced is अनिर्वचनीयः – that which cannot be verbally explained – केचित् वाचाम् स्थितम् अविषये.

So far the enjoyment of the Sahrudayas, I am explaining it in this work. तेन ब्रूमः सहृदयमनःप्रीतये तत्स्वरूपम् |

Dhvanyaaloka  has both Karikaas and Vrittis. Some are of the opinion that Anandavardhana himself wrote both. Some consider them to be written by different authors. P.V. Kane has written a book on “The History of Sanskrit Poetics”. In this he mentions that the authors are different. Dr. K. Krishnamoorthy, a scholar from Karnataka, is of the opinion that both were written by Anandavardhana only.

[Side Note: P.V. Kane got Bharata Ratna award during the period of Rajendra Prasad. He is the only Sanskrit Pandit to get this award. His Magnum Opus work is “The History of Dharma Shaastra”].

Kashmir was a centre of all intellectual debate. When a person proposes a theory, there will be so many critical works on the new theory. There will be a counter argument. Kavi Bilhana was an 11th-century Kashmiri poet. He went around the country and finally settled down in Karnataka. In the place called Kalyaan, the Chaulka kings were ruling.  There was a King named Vikramaaditya or Vikramanka. Bilhana became the court-poet. In praise of the King who patronized him, he wrote a mahakaavya called “Vikramaankadeva Charita”.  In that poem he mentions about Kashmir – “sahodara-kumkuma-kesaraanaam भवन्ति मन्ये कविता विलासाः na shaaradaa-desham-apaasya theshaam drushto yadanyatra maaprarohah” He says that the Kumkuma-kesari and Kavyas are siblings. Both of them are born only in Kashmir and not anywhere else. Thus Kashmir was at the peak of its glory. When Anandavardana proposed his Dhvani theory, there was counter-thesis from Poet Manoratha. Quoting this counter-thesis in Dhvanyaaloka , Anandavardhana provides his response to it.

यस्मिन्नस्ति न वस्तु किंचन मनःप्रह्लादि सालंकृति
व्युत्पन्नै रचितं च नैव वचनैर्वक्रोक्तिशून्यं च यत्
काव्यं तद्ध्वनिना समन्वितमिति प्रीत्या प्रशंसञ्जडो
नो विद्मोऽभिदधाति किं सुमतिना पृष्टः स्वरूपं ध्वनेः ||
Poetry in which there can be least delight to the mind (मनःप्रह्लादि) and no embellishment (सालंकृति), which does not present any welcoming words and artistic turn in expressions (यस्मिन्नस्ति न वस्तु किंचन), is so much praised with all vehemence by the stupid (प्रीत्या प्रशंस: जड: नो विद्म:+अभिदधाति), as being with suggestion (Dhvani) (काव्यं तत्+ध्वनिना समन्वितम्+इति). But one fails to imagine what answer the theorist would furnish if asked to present the nature of Dhvani (स्वरूपं ध्वनेः) itself!”

Manoratha’s argument was this “There is no vastu. There is no alamkara. There is no mastery demonstrated in the choice of words. Vakroti or crooked speech is also absent (Kuntaka wrote Vakroti-jeevitam). But you say that there is still Dhvani. It is like closing the eyes and dancing”. He demanded that the nature of Dhvani be explicitly described.

प्रतिपत्तिः is understanding. अप्रतिपत्तिः is the no understanding. विप्रतिपत्तिः is the misunderstanding. सुप्रतिपत्तिः is the right understanding. Anandavardhana says that he is writing this Dhavanyaaloka to clarify the misunderstanding about Dhvani.

There are three sub-groups among the first group which says that Dhvani does not exist. One group says there have been earlier literary critics like Bharata, Bhaama, Dhandi who have already analyzed poetry and have provided Alamkaara, Guna, Vritti, etc. as the beautifying aspects of poetry. We cannot see anything other than these aspects in poetry. So Dhvani does not exist.

The second abhaavavadi group says if something other than the existing beautifying aspects of poetry exists, it has to be only a दोषः or a fault. So it cannot be taken as the soul of poetry.

The third abhaavavadi group mentioned that there is no limit to the decorations that can be done. In the same way, the Alamkaara is unlimited. Bharata has stated 4 alamkaaraas – उपमा रूपकं चैव दीपकं यमकं तथा. Later writers like Bhaamah increased it to 36. And then in Kavya Prakaasha, there are 60. In chandraloka, there are 100. In Kuvalayaananda, there are around 120. Even after this, there were new alamkaaras there were identified like – bhaavandi, bhaavodaya, bhaavashaanti, rasavat, preyasvat, ojasvi, etc. In the jewelry shop, there are no limits on the design. The third abhaavavadi group said that you might have introduced a new alamkara. There is nothing great about it that it be called as the soul of poetry.

For the first school, Anandavardhana says that great poets like Valmiki and Vyasaa have also used this. Anandavardhana states that he is not saying something new. So this suggestion definitely exists.

वाल्मीकिव्यासमुख्याश्च ये प्रख्याताः कवीश्वराः |

तदभिप्रायबाह्योऽयं नास्माभिर्दर्शितो नयः .. इति || ३.१९ end||

वाल्मीकि+व्यास+मुख्या: च ये प्रख्याताः कवि+ईश्वराः |

तत् अभिप्राय+बाह्य: अयं न अस्माभि: दर्शित: नयः इति ||

The principles laid down are in-keeping with the features followed by celebrated poets such as Vaalmiki, Vyaasa and the like.

In that case, that it is not something new, then he was asked to explain what is Dhvani. It is that which flashes.

प्रतीयमानं पुनरन्यदेव वस्त्वस्ति वाणीषु महाकवीनाम् | </***>

यत्तत्प्रसिद्धावयवातिरिक्तं विभाति लावण्यमिवांगनासु || ४||  </*>

But the suggestive aspect is distinct from this (explicit – denotative – conventional) (प्रतीयमानं पुन: अन्यत् एव). It shows itself brilliantly in the words of celebrated poets (महाकवीनाम् वाणीषु वस्तु अस्ति) and reigns supreme over and above (अतिरिक्तं विभाति) the striking external elements (प्रसिद्ध+अवयव), even as charm among ladies (लावण्यम् इव अङ्गनासु). (4)

In the words of the mahakavis, there will be a meaning which is referred to as the Prateeyamaana – that which flashes. That is called Dhvani. When the overall beauty or soundarya of a woman is noticed, it is not pin-pointable to any specific feature.

सरस्वती स्वादु तदर्थवस्तु निःष्यन्दमाना महतां कवीनाम् |

अलोकसामान्यमभिव्यनक्ति परिस्फुरन्तम् प्रतिभाविशेषम् || ६||

सरस्वती स्वादु तत्+अर्थ+वस्तु निःष्यन्दमाना महतां कवीनाम् |
अलोक+सामान्यम्+अभिव्यनक्ति परिस्फुरन्तम् प्रतिभा+विशेषम् || ६ ||

The speech of the celebrated poets revealing a theme infused with suggestion would certainly bring forth the striking and inspiring extra-ordinary genius in them and the same is uncommon yet brilliant (6).

[Side Note: Dr. H.V. Nagaraja Rao sir memorized these verses in 1964].

वस्तुतत्त्वम् = इति वृत्तम् theme; निःष्यन्दमाना = dripping; महतां कवीनाम् = great poet’s; सरस्वती = भरति, वाक्, speech; अलोक-सामान्यम् =  not ordinary, extra-ordinary; प्रतिभा+विशेषम्  = the specialty of creativity; परिस्फुरन्तम् = flashing or vibrating; अभिव्यनक्ति = expresses;

This ability to create great poems is not obtained by putting in efforts or by learning the techniques. By their nature, they have got this capacity. It is an inborn gift. It is अलोक-सामान्यम् – something not very commonly found in this world.

[Side note: There was a boy who used to write poems. His father did not want him to write poems and scolded him. The boy responded in this way “Father, Father, Mercy take! I shall verses never make!!” J ]

There are four Udhyotas or chapters in Dhvanyaaloka . There is a lot of information in it. The greatness of Anandavardhana can be understood only when his words are fully read. No other literary critic has gone into the subtle aspects or nuances of poetry to the extent that Anandavardhana had analyzed it.

Some of the important questions from exam perspective are:

* Dhvani abhaava vaada

* dhavani lakshana

* Rasavadalamkaara

* Gunaah Sangatana

* The prominent rasa of Mahaabhaarata and Raamaayana

* Essay on life and works of Anandavardhana

<End of first session>

<Start of second session>

Show the 3 types of Dhvani are present in the first verse

स्वेच्छाकेसरिणः स्वच्छस्वच्छायायासितेन्दवः |

त्रायन्तां वो मधुरिपोः प्रपन्नार्तिच्छिदो नखाः ||

Vastu Dhvani, Alamkara Dhvani, Rasaadi Dhvani – 3 types of Dhvani in Dhvanyaaloka .

Vastu Dhvani – Some other thing comes to our mind when we read about the thing that is mentioned.

Alamkara Dhvani- Alamkara or figure of speech should be suggested or expressed without being told explicitly.  It should not be openly said or denoted. Examples of Alamkara are Upama, Ropaka, Athisayokti

Rasaadi Dhvani – Rasa or Bhava, etc. should be suggested by what is said by the poet.

Abhinava Gupta shows that Anandavardhana has got all 3 Dhvanis in his mangala shloka itself.

स्वेच्छाकेसरिणः = By his own wish, he was born as a kesari or lion.

नखाः स्वच्छस्वच्छायायासितेन्दवः

नखाः  = His nails are curved like the crescent moon.

स्वच्छ-स्वच्छाया आयासित इन्दवः= By their pure splendor, the nails cause the crescent moons to feel exhausted (defeated).

त्रायन्तां व: = Let him protect you all.

प्रपन्नार्तिच्छिदो = प्रपन्न + आर्ति + छिद: = Those who surrender to god are Prapannas. आर्ति  = suffering;  छिद: = tears off

Vastu Dhvani –  The luster of the nails are many-folds brighter than the shine of the moon. That it is brighter is not stated directly. But saying that the moon felt shy, the brightness of the nails has been suggested. This luster is being suggested. So it is Vastu Dhvani. स्वेच्छाकेसरिणः  It is suggested that he is extraordinary when compared to other lions as he took the form on his own desire while the other lion are on account of their Karma.

Alamkara Dhvani – By the shine of the nails, even the moon has been defeated. This is Vyatireka alamkara where the upameya (say the face) is considered to be superior to the upamaana (say the lotus). यत्र उपमानम् उपमेयात् अतिशयत्वं प्राप्नोति तत्र व्यतिरेकालंकारः भवति | “व्यतिरेको विषयस्ते उपमानो उपमेययोः” is the definition of vyatireka in Kuvalayaananda. The nails are the upameyaas. The crescent moon is the upamaana. But here the poet has suggested that the nails / upameyaas are better than the moon/ upamaana.

Rasaadi Dhvani – The devotion of the poet towards Lord Narasimha is suggested when he says that he can protect you all. So the Bhakti bhaavaa is suggested. Rasaadi means Rasa, Bhaava, etc. According to this system, there are only 9 rasas namely – Shringaara, Haasya, Karuna, Raudra, Veera, Bhayaanaka, Bheebatsa, Adbhuta, and Shanta.

Show that Dhvani is the most important thing in poetry.

In ordinary talk, there are only two functions of the word. They are abhidaa and lakshnaa. Abhidaa is when the term indicates only its primary meaning. सिंहो मानवक: That boy is a lion. Here the term lion indicates ferociousness, aggressiveness, and other such qualities in the boy. In the poems, there is a third type. It is Vyanjana. The व्यञ्जन-व्यापार is the third function of the poet’s word. It is much more pleasant than the first two types. Dhvani is a type of poetry where the words are not only giving their primary meaning. They are also suggesting some other more beautiful meaning.

यत्रार्थः शब्दो वा तमर्थमुपसर्जनीकृतस्वार्थौ |

व्यङ्क्तः काव्यविशेषः स ध्वनिरिति सूरिभिः कथितः || १३ ||

यत्र+अर्थः शब्द:+वा तम्+अर्थम्+उपसर्जनी+कृतस्वार्थौ |

व्यङ्क्तः काव्य+विशेषः स: ध्वनि:+इति सूरिभिः कथितः || १३ ||

That kind of poetry in which the conventional meaning or the conventional word renders its meaning subordinate and suggests the intended or implied meaning, is termed “Dhvani” or “suggestive poetry” by the learned people.

Some time the meaning subdues itself and gives a more beautiful meaning. In other cases, the word does this. It can be shabda shakti mula dhvani or artha shakti mula dhvani.

Mammatta wrote a book called Kavya Prakaashaa. According to him, poetry is of three types. Uttama, madhyama and Adhama. Only when the dhvani is there, the kavya is considered as a uttama kavya. उत्तमकाव्यं ध्वनिः इति कथ्यते |  मद्यम काव्यं गुणिभूतव्यङ्ग्य | madyama kaavyam guni bhoota vyangyaa | mukhya = pradhaanaa, Guna = not primary, gauna = secondary. Poetry is called Dhvani when there is a suggested meaning and that suggested meaning is the principal meaning. In those poems, where there is vyangyaa but it has become secondary and is not the primary, are considered as the middle level of poetry. Where there is no suggested meaning, the poem is a Chitra kaavya. It is an adhama kaavya. It might have good shabda almkaaras. Eg. from Kaavya  Prakaasha, “भिद्या-दुद्यदुदार-दर्दुरदरी-दीर्घा-दरिद्र-द्रुम | द्रोहोद्रेकमहोर्मिमेदुरमदा मन्दाकिनी मन्दताम् ॥” It is an Adhama Kaavya. The shabdas are good. But the meaning is not so interesting.

Thus Dhvani is the most entertaining among poetry. When a great poet writes, he would focus on the meaning and he would not create stunts with words that can attract only the lay men.

वेद्यते स तु काव्यार्थतत्त्वज्ञैरेव केवलम् ||७ || 1.7 ||

स: तु काव्यार्थतत्त्वज्ञै: एव केवलम् वेद्यते |

This Dhvani or vyangyaarthaa will not be understandable by everyone. Only काव्यार्थतत्त्वज्ञः or the connoisseurs or experts in poetry can understand the suggested meaning. Ordinary people cannot understand.

Eg. In Kumaarasambhava, when Parvathi’s tapas is described –

स्थिताक्षणं पक्ष्मसु ताडिताधरा: पयोधरोत्सेधनिपातचूर्णिता:।

वलीषु तस्या: स्खलिता: प्रपेदिरे चिरेण नाभिं प्रथमोदबिन्दव:।।

“The first drop of rain water प्रथमोदबिन्दव: falling on her at the advent of the rainy season. On the lashes of the eyes, that water droplet stood for only one moment – स्थिता: क्षणं पक्ष्मसु. It hit her on the lips ताडिताधरा: They fell on her breasts and split into tiny droplets – पयोधरोत्सेधनिपातचूर्णिता: | They jumped on the folds of her stomach and hesitated तस्या: वलीषु स्खलिता: प्रपेदिरे | After sometime चिरेण, they flowed down and entered her navel बिन्दव: नाभिं प्रथमोद | In the poetry of high standards, the suggested meaning should be present and it will be more attractive and beautiful. Kalidasa is suggesting the secret of Yoga. When doing penance, the eye should neither be completely open nor should it completely closed. नासाग्रन्यस्तनयन: संवृतास्यः सुनिश्चलः ध्यायीत मनसा देवं पुरोविष्टभ्य चागृत <TODO – to be verified>   [ Similar Quote from the internet — समग्रीवशिराः सम्यक् संवृतास्यः सुनिश्चलः ॥ प्राङ्मुखोदङ्मुखो वाऽपि नासाग्रन्यस्तलोचनः ।  ] That ‘the eyes should be pointed at the nose’ is described in the Yoga shastra. If she had closed her eyes, the rain drop would not have stayed there. If she had kept her eyes fully open, then they would stay there and not fall down. The drop fell down after a second suggests that her eyes were half-open. The mouth should not be open during dhyaanaa, done in the yogic posture. So the drop fell on her lower lip. Her lips were so soft that it just did not flow. The fall of the drop hurt her lips. While standing in tapas, one should not be stooping or bending. The person should stand firm and erect. Since she stood straight without bending, it fell on her breasts.

This demonstrates that only knowledgeable people would be able to appreciate this inner meaning.

Sanghatana संघटना

Sanghatana is the arrangement of words in poetry. There is a lot of discussion in the 3rd chapter of Dhvanyaaloka  on Sanghatana. Anandavardhana discusses whether Gunas and Sanghatanas are one and the same or are they different. There are 3 types of Sanghatana.

असमासा समासेन मध्यमेन च भूषिता |

तथा दीर्घसमासेति त्रिधा सङ्घटनोदिता || 3.5 ||

The first type is Asamaasa – without any samaasa giving each pada separately like those of Kalidasa – (अस्ति उत्तरस्यां) अस्त्युतरस्यां दिशि देवतात्मा हिमालयो नाम नगाधिराज:। The second type is Madhyama – where there are smaller samaasaas or compound words. The third type is Deergasamaasa – eg. Kadambari first sentences – आसीत् अशेष-नरपति-शिर-स्समभ्यच्चित्त-शासन:  where there are very long samaasas like the style of Baanaa.  Vedanta Desika in his Yadavaaabhyudaya writes with long samaasas. लोलपतच्चरणलीलाहतिश्चरितहालाहलेनिजपनी नृत्यन्तमप्रतिग कृत्यन्तमप्रतिमा मत्यन्तचारोकुशम् |

Bharata has stated 10 gunas – Slesha, prasada, samata, madhurya, sukumarata, arthavyaki, udaratva, ojas, kanti and samadhi – these ten are the gunas. Anandavardha and Mammataa said that 3 would suffice – Maadhurya, Prasaada and Ojas. Prasaada is the understandability i.e. the meaning of the verse should be understood in one reading. Shruthi maatrena shabdaanaam yena arthappratyayo bhavet sa prasaado guno gneyah | The meaning should be able to be understood as soon as the listener hears the verse. Ojas is samaasa bhuyatvam – the presence of samaasas. Maadhuryaa is avoidance of the jaaring sounds like “ट ठ ड ढ ” or “भ” – “apasaaraya ganasaaram…” – these letters are avoided when a lover talks to his beloved.

Anandavardhanaa says in the 3rd chapter of Dhvanyaaloka that Guna and Sanghatana are different.

काव्यस्य+आत्मा ध्वनि:

काव्यस्य+आत्मा ध्वनि:+इति बुधै: य: समाम्नातपूर्व:

तस्य+अभावं जगदु:+अपरे भाक्तम्+आहु:+तम्+अन्ये |

केचित्+वाचाम् स्थितम्+अविषये तत्त्वमूचु:+तदीयम्

तेन ब्रूमःसहृदयमनःप्रीतये तत्स्वरूपम् || 1. ||

प्रतीयमानं पुनरन्यदेव वस्त्वस्ति वाणीषु महाकवीनाम् |

यत्तत्प्रसिद्धावयवातिरिक्तं विभाति लावण्यमिवांगनासु ||1.४ ||

In the words of the mahakavis’, there will be a meaning which is referred to as the Prateeyamaana प्रतीयमानं पुनरन्यदेव वस्त्वस्ति वाणीषु महाकवीनाम् |That is called Dhvani. There are Dhvanyaabhaavavaadis who do not accept the presence of Dhvani. There are others who say that Dhvani is nothing new. It is the Bhakti or the laakshanaa vrutti भाक्तम्+आहु:+तम्+अन्ये | The third group said that it is anirvachaneeya – that which cannot be explained. वाचाम स्थितम्+अविषये तत्त्वमूचु:+तदीयम् | Because there are these many varied opinions, to clarify the correct form of Dhvani, for bringing happiness to the minds of the Sahrudayaas, I am saying this. तेन ब्रूमःसहृदयमनःप्रीतये तत्स्वरूपम्  |

Reeti Siddhanta

Vaamana was the first to highlight the importance of Reeti. रीतिरात्मा काव्यस्य | Reeti is the style of writing prevalent in different countries.  Gowdi, Paanchaali, Vaidharbhi are the 3 styles. Gowda refers to Bengal region. Gowdeshu aksharaadambharah – Forceful long compounds (aadambhara of akshaa) are the characteristics of the Gowdi style. Praasa or Rhyme will be more in this style. Paanchala is the region where Draupadi was born. Paanchaali is neither too complex nor too simple. Kalidaasa’s style is Vaidharbhi. Vaidharbhi was also the style of Vijjikka. Ganga Devi was a queen, born in Karnataka and was the wife of Kamparaaya, a king in the Vijayanagara Empire. She wrote the mahakaavya Madhuraa vijayam. The Delhi sultanas had encroached Mathura / madurai. Kamparaaya fought them. Vaidharbhi refer to the vidharba region which comprises of Nagpur and other areas in Maharashtra. Dhamayanti, the wife of Nala was the princess of Vidharba desha. Krishna’s first wife, Rukmini also belongs to Vidharbha. समग्र-गुण-संपन्ना वैदर्भीरीतिरिष्यते | All the 10 gunas will be present in Vaidharbhi. This is considered as the atyuttamaa reeti.  Anandavardhana says that Dhvani is different from Reeti and Dhvani is the antassattva in all the poems.

Notes from last year’s class by Dr. Guru Raj Rao:

  • Vaidharbhi= द्राक्षा पाक: very simple. Eg. Valmiki Ramayana; like Sita, very kind to everyone
  • Paanchaali = कदली पाक: medium complexity, like Draupadi, being good to good people and bad to bad people
  • Gowdi = नारिकेल पाक: Complex with long compounds (Oojo guna), like the Kshatriya mahila, being very rough and tough. Eg. Shishupaala Vadha, Naishadeeyacharitam. Bhaanabhata – one word 11 lines long.

<End of second session>

<Start of third session>

Rasa auchitya

औचित्यम् = propriety – suitableness – it is the bhava of uchita. उचितम् = proper.

[Side note: A Kashmiri poet, Kshemendra (after Anandavardhana) wrote a work called Auchitya Vichaara Charchaa. He states that Guna, Alamkaaraa, Vrutti, Pravrutti or the suggested meaning vyangyaartha – all these should been within the limits of auchitya. Else it will become a laughing stock].

An interruption of aesthetic relish is called Rasa bhanga. The main reason for this is anauchitya.

अनौचित्यादृते नान्यद्रसभन्गस्य कारणम् |

प्रसिद्धौचित्यबन्धस्तु रसस्योपनिषत्परा || 3.14 ++ ||

अनौचित्यात्+ऋते न+अन्यत्+रसभन्गस्य कारणम् |

प्रसिद्ध+औचित्य+बन्ध:+तु रसस्य+उपनिषद्+परा ||

Except for अनौचित्या there is no other reason for Rasa bhanga. The kaavyaas made using auchitya is the Upanishad or rahasya or the secret of the best rasa.

There is the suitability of the character and the suitability of even Vrutti, Pravrutti and Sannivesha (situation) are to be considered. For example, the king taking out his sword to fight enemy is acceptable but if he takes out his sword in a fight with his wife, it is not appropriate. Even in the Natya Shastra, when Indra flies in the sky, it is acceptable for the audience to accept the divine feats only by gods. But when an ordinary man says that he will fly to the heaven, it is inappropriate. Another example – in a drama, there is a pandit. His speech could indicate his knowledge. But the character of a servant cannot be shown to be talking in that same manner. For each rasa like adbhuda, karuna, vira or bhayaanaka, the poem has to be written appropriately. The dialog and the actions for Karuna and Vira will be different. Adbhuda might have a lengthy dialog expressing surprise. Thus the most important factor among the suitability is Rasa Auchitya.

Angi rasa – is the prominent rasa which should be present from the beginning till the end of the Kavya. Anga rasa is the secondary rasa which could appear in between at some time.

There are two vibhaavaas namely Aalambana Vibhaavaa and Udeepana Vibhaavaa. The object towards which the rasa is targeted is Aalambana Vibhaavaa. Bhima says that he will drink Dhushaasanaa’s blood. So Bhima is the kaarana or Aalambana Vibhaavaa for Dhushsaasanaa’s fear. When Bhima comes, there are others who come with him making loud noises beating their drums. They become the secondary cause and enhance the fear. They are the Udeepana Vibhaavaa. So the Vibaavaa, Anubhaavaa and Sanchaaribhaavaa included by the poet should enhance the main rasa. It should not be against the main rasa.

Difference between Vaachaya and Vyangyaa

Vaachyaa is the denoted meaning. Vyangyaa is the suggested meaning. Vaachyaa is the meaning that anyone who knows the language or one who has the dictionary can understand. Vyangyaa or the suggested meaning is understood only by Sahrudayaas. Vyangyaa should be more charming and beautiful than the Vaachyaa. Understanding of the vaachyaa is very important for the understanding of the Vyangyaa. If a person cannot understand the vaachyaa, then he/she would not be able to understand the Vyangyaa.

यथा पदार्थ+द्वारेण वाक्यार्थः सम्प्रतीयते |

वाच्यार्थ+पूर्विका तद्वत्प्रतिपत्तस्य वस्तुनः || १० ||

Just as the full meaning of a sentence can become grasped through the meaning of individual words, the knowledge of that suggested meaning can be comprehended only through the medium of the expressed meaning. (10)

उदा. अहं बलाहकम् अपश्यम् | If one does not know the meaning of the word बलाहकम् to be cloud, then the meaning of the sentence cannot be understood.

आलोकार्थी यथा दीपशिखायां यत्नवाञ्जनः |

तदुपायतया तद्वदर्थे वाच्ये तदादृतः || ९ ||

आलोक+अर्थी यथा दीप+शिखायां यत्नवान्+जनः |

तत्+उपायतया तद्वदर्थे वाच्ये तदादृतः || ९ ||

In the same manner as a man intent upon seeing an object in darkness, puts forth his efforts towards fetching a lamp owing to its being a means to realise his goal (of seeing the object) one who is very much interested in the suggested meaning would at the outset direct his effort towards (understanding) the conventional meaning. (9)


Though he does not want the flame of the lamp, and he wants the light only, he still brings the deepa shikaa because without the flame, there is not going to be any light. The flame of lamp is just an upaayaa – a means to the required end. Vachyaartha is the upaaya or the means. Vengyaartha is the upeya or desired goal. Vengyaartha could come for Vaachyaartha or Lakshyaartha. Lakshanaa is a vyaapaara or function where a meaning is indicated. There can be only one Vaachyaartha. There could be many intended or suggested meanings. In Mammata’s kavya prakaasha,

गतोस्तमर्क: |  गत:+अस्तम्+अर्क:  = अर्क: अस्तम् गत:  |

The vaachyaartha is that the sun has set. The Vaidhika Brahmana understands that it is time for Sandhya vandana. The thief thinks that he should start his work. The students want to start studying. Based on the nature of the listener, the message conveyed differs.

Explain the arguments of those who do not accept Dhvani and refute their arguments.

There are three different schools of Dhvani-abhaava-vaadees which maintain that there is no Dhvani. The first group says all beautifying factors of poetry have already been stated by earlier writers. It may be Alamkaara, Guna, Reeti or Vritti. All these things have already been stated by the earlier poets. Apart from them, there is nothing required. All the beautifying factions have already been stated.  So there is nothing called Dhvani.

The second group says that if Dhvani is something other than what is already stated, then it must be a dosha or fault. If it is not Alamkaara, Guna, Reeti or Vritti, it cannot be something that beautifies the poetry and it has to be only a defect or blemish.

The third group says that the varieties of descriptions are endless. Therefore there is an increase of the number of alamkaaras in all the texts. First, Bharat stated only 4 alamkaaras – Upamaa, Roopakam, Deepakam, and Yamakam. Later writers like Bhaamah increased it to 36. And then in Kavya Prakaasha, there are 60. In Kuvalayaananda, there are more than 100. Like this, the ways or the manners, in which a poet can describe any object is not limited. And therefore, you might have shown some other way of description. It is like some other type of a new Alamkaara. So it is not a new concept. It has to be just another type of Alamkaara. And many more new alamkaaras could come in future also. They do not demand any special importance.

For the first one, Anandavardhana argues that Dhvani is different from the earlier stated concepts. In Dhvani, the suggested meaning is one which is not explicitly stated, yet it is understood by the Sahrudayaas. In Chitra Meemaamsaa, Appaiya Deekshita quotes an example काञ्चित् काञ्चनगौराङ्गी वीक्ष्य साक्षादिव श्रियम् वरदः संशयापन्नो वक्षःस्थलमवैक्षत |   अन्वयः — साक्षात् श्रियम् इव काञ्चित् काञ्चनगौराङ्गी वीक्ष्य संशयापन्नः वरदः वक्षःस्थलम् अवैक्षत | In Kanchi, there is Varadaraaja Swamy Temple. In the Vasanthostava, Varadaraajaa himself came to play with the devotees. At that time, he notices a woman. She is काञ्चनगौराङ्गी  i.e., she has a golden yellowish body; साक्षात् श्रियम् इव – She resembled Goddess Lakshmi Herself. वरद: संशयम् आपन्न: – Lord Varada was confused and he looked at his heart वक्षःस्थलम् अवैक्षत.  The poet has not stated why he looked at his heart. His heart is the seat of Lakshmi as she is vakshassthala vaasini. Some readers will assume that Varada wants to check if Lakshmi has left that place and has come here in person. Another reader interprets it this way – Since Lakshmi has the arrogance that she is only the most beautiful woman, Varada wants to see her reaction when this lady with golden complexion is in front of him. A third person says that Varada looked at his heart to compare Lakshmi with the lady. Thus the suggested meaning is different and it cannot be classified as any other earlier defined entity. The great poets have included this Dhvani in their poems. The readers enjoy this suggestion which is different from the other alamkaaras.

For the first school, Anandavardhana says that if they do not accept the existence of Dhvani, which gives beauty to the poem, he can only pity them. He points out that great poets like Valmiki and Vyasaa have also used this. Anandavardhana states that he is not saying something new. So this suggestion definitely exists.

वाल्मीकिव्यासमुख्याश्च ये प्रख्याताः कवीश्वराः |

तदभिप्रायबाह्योऽयं नास्माभिर्दर्शितो नयः .. इति || ३.१९ end||

वाल्मीकि+व्यास+मुख्या: च ये प्रख्याताः कवि+ईश्वराः |

तत् अभिप्राय+बाह्य: अयं न अस्माभि: दर्शित: नयः इति ||

The principles laid down are in-keeping with the features followed by celebrated poets such as Vaalmiki, Vyaasa and the like.

For the second school, which consider anything new to be dosha or a fault only, Anandavardhana says that when the readers enjoy the suggestive rasa, it cannot be considered to be a negative aspect. He says that he can only pity such people, who say that Dhvani is a defect, who fail to recognize the Ananda produced by Dhvani.

For the third school, who claim that Dhvani is nothing new but another alamkaara, Anandavardhana explains how Dhvani is different from the other alamkaaras. Dhvani is something that is understood on account of the alamkaara. Alamkaara itself could suggest various meanings. Lakshyaartha could suggest a different meaning. There are shabha shakti mula dhvani and artha shakti mula dhvani and endless varieties like that. Therefore, Dhvani is not just another alamkaara. Dhvani is a separate entity conveying the suggested meaning. There is a third type of meaning called Dhvani or Vyangyaartha.

भक्त्या बिभर्ति नैकत्वम् रूपभेदादयं ध्वनिः  |……
अतिव्याप्तेरथाव्याप्तेर्न चासौ लक्ष्यते तया || 1.14 ||

भक्त्या बिभर्ति न+एकत्वम् रूपभेदात्+अयं ध्वनिः  |….

अतिव्याप्ते:+अथ+अव्याप्ते:+न च+असौ लक्ष्यते तया |

Suggestion and secondary signification are not one and the same because of the innate different between the two. अयं ध्वनिः रूपभेदात् भक्त्या एकत्वं न बिभर्ति | If that is considered identical with suggestion, it commits the fallacies of “too wide” a definition and “too narrow” a definition.

Among the three functions of the word, the second function is called Lakshana Vyaapaara or Bhakti. Believers of Bhakti are Bhaktaas. They are also called as Laakshanikaas. Suggestion and Bhakti are different since their forms are different (roopa bheda).

The three doshaas in definitions are Athivyaapti, avyaapti and asambhavaa. What is a cow? को नाम गौ: ? (गो shabda can be used in both male and female gender). If the definition is given as that which has 2 horns and 4 legs (शृङ्गी चतुष्पात्), it becomes athivyaapi since there are many other animals that this definition will apply. If the definition is given as that which has 4 legs and white coloured skin, it becomes avyaapti since there are cows which are not in white color and the definition does not cover all the cows. If the definition is given as that which has 3 horns, it is asambhavaa as it is not possible.

If laskshanaa is stated to be same as Dhvani, there will be athivyaapti and avyaapti doshaas. There are many examples where the poet is describing a situation and a certain emotion (rasa) that is delineated or understood. In such cases, there is no lakshana and yet we get dhvani directly from the vaachyaartha.

मुख्यार्थबाधे तद्योगे रूढितोऽथ प्रयोजनात् ।
अन्योऽर्थो लक्ष्यते यत्सा लक्षणारोपिता क्रिया ॥ काप्र-९ ॥ मम्मट: – काव्यप्रकाश

For lakshanaa, the primary meaning should be unacceptable. There has to be bhaadaa or obstruction of the primary meaning. सिंहो मानवक: That boy is a lion. Here the term lion indicates ferociousness, aggressiveness, and other such qualities in the boy. Only when there is inconsistency in the meaning, the lakshanaa is taken.

In Meghadoota, the Yaksha is cursed to live away from his wife for 1 year.

यक्षश्‍चक्रे जनकतनयास्‍नानपुण्‍योदकेषु
स्निग्‍धच्‍छायातरुषु वसतिं रामगिर्याश्रमेषु।।

यक्षः+चक्रे जनक-तनया-स्नान-पुण्य-उदकेषु
स्निग्ध-छाया-तरुषु वसतिं रामगिरि-आश्रमेषु।।१।।

He took residence among the hermitages of Ramagiri, where the trees give cool shade, and the waters are purified by the baths of Janaka’s daughter.

He lived in ashramas in Ramagiri. Why is it mentioned in plural here? He builds one ashram. He is engrossed in thoughts about his wife. He forgets that and starts building another one elsewhere. The pathetic state of the Yaksha is being described in this way. In this example, there is no inconsistency in the literal meaning. But there is the Dhvani of Vipralambha Shringaara. So Lakshanaa cannot be equated to Dhvani as Dhvani could occur in the absence of Lakshanaa.

In many instances, Lakshanaa will not be Dhvani. Hence Avyaapti also occurs. There are “dead metaphors” which have been used for a long time and hence they do not carry any ability to convey a special meaning. For example, a woman is praised for her charm and grace or “laavanya”. Laavanya is the bhava of Lavana – saltness. There is no longer any metaphor as people understand laavanya as charm. The term was initially used to mean that she has a special characteristic which makes her look so beautiful just as the salt adds a taste to the food without which it would not be good. In such situations, there is Lakshanaa but there is no Dhvani.

परिम्लानं पीनस्तनजघनसङ्गादुभयत-
स्तनोर्मध्यस्यान्तः परिमिलनमप्राप्य हरितम् |
इदं व्यस्तन्यासं श्लथभुजलताक्षेपवलनैः
कृशाङ्ग्याः सन्तापं वदति बिसिनीपत्रशयनम् || eg for 14 ||

“This bed prepared with lotus leaves (बिसिनी+पत्र+शयनम्) speaks (वदति) of the affliction of the beautiful lady who slept on it. For, its two edges one faded because of her robust bosom and plumpy hips. That portion which was occupied by her slender waist has retained its greenness. The movements of her drooping creeper-like arm have rendered it disorderly.”

Ratnaavali had slept somewhere. Later, Vatsa Raaja is seeing that place. The word vadati means that it “indicates” rather than conveying its literal meaning of “saying”. But since such usage is so common, there is no Dhvani in that. It is just a cliché, i.e., a phrase used to the point of no meaning or importance, ironic because it is intended to make an impact like “I love you” or “I am so grateful to you” or the pleasantries like “I am extremely happy to see you”.

Since there can be Dhvani without Lakshana and also Lakshana without Dhvani, these two cannot be the same.

The difference between Alamkaara and Guna

तमर्थमवलम्बन्ते येऽङ्गिनं ते गुणाः स्मृताः |
अङ्गाश्रितास्त्वलङ्कारा मन्तव्याः कटकादिवत् || 2.7 ||

तम्+अर्थम्+अवलम्बन्ते ये+अङ्गिनं ते गुणाः स्मृताः |
अङ्ग+आश्रिता:+तु+अलङ्कारा: मन्तव्याः कटकादिवत् ||

That which depends upon this main element (here rasa) are considered as “qualities”. The figures of speech are those that are connected with its parts (here the expressed meaning and the expression) in the same way as ornaments like bracelet, etc.

The difference between Alamkaara and Guna is stated here. A person might have decorated himself in a certain way. But his Gunas or qualities are different. The Alamkaaras are decorations of the body and the Gunas always depend on the soul (अङ्गि that which contains the organs). The अङ्गि of kavya is rasa. Prasaad, Ojas, Madhurya and the other gunas are decorations of the soul, the rasa dhvani, which is the अङ्गि. शब्दार्थौ काव्यस्य शरीरम् | The alamkaaras are attached to the body which is the word, shabda and the meaning, vaachya. Yamaka is a shabda alamkara. Upamaa is a arthaalamkaara. ये अङ्गिनं तम् अर्थम् (dhvani) अवलम्बन्ते, ते गुणाः | अङ्ग-आश्रिता: तु अलङ्कारा: | कटकादिवत् = Like the bangle (कटक) and others.

शब्दार्थौ सहितौ काव्यम् |

Everyone agreed that word and meaning together make a poem. Word and meaning cannot exist individually without each other. Pandita Raja Jagannatha in his Rasa Gangaadhara did not agree to this. He said that Kavyaa is only shabda and not Artha.  रमणीयार्थप्रतिपादकः शब्दः काव्यम् |

<End of third session>

<Start of fourth session>

In the fourth chapter of Dhvanyaaloka , Anandavardhana does practical criticism. The general complain about Indian alamkaarikas is that they take samples from different works and point out the figures of speech. But they do not take up one whole literary work and do a literary criticism doing an exhaustive review of its specialty. But that is not true. We find an exhaustive review of Ramayana and Mahabharata in the 4th of chapter of Dhvanyaaloka .


रविसङ्क्रान्तसौभाग्यस्तुषारावृतमण्डलः |
निःश्वासान्ध इवादर्शश्चन्द्रमा न प्रकाशते ||2.1 ++ ||

रवि+सङ्क्रान्त+सौभाग्य:+तुषारावृत+मण्डलः |
निःश्वास+अन्ध:+इव+आदर्श:+चन्द्रमा न प्रकाशते ||

All the charm (brightness) to the sun has disappeared now that the orb is enveloped by snow. Like a mirror rendered blind by the heaving, the moon does not glow.

At the advent of morning, the sun is raising and the brightness of moon is fading. The soubhaagyaa of chandra has now been transferred to Sun (रवि+सङ्क्रान्त+सौभाग्य: | )

तुषारावृत+मण्डलः | आदर्श: = दर्पणः = mirror. When we breathe out air on the mirror, the mirror becomes unclear. The person is unable to see clearly. Like that, Chandra has also is not bright now. The literal meaning here is that the mirror has become blind अन्ध: by the breathed out air. There is Dhvani in the shabda “andha” as it means that it is unable to reflect the image clearly. This type of Dhvani is अत्यन्ततिरस्कृतवाच्या. The literal meaning is overridden. Like this, some shloka will be taken and its criticism is not present is the allegation. This is refuted by Anandavardhana. In the 4th chapter, the entire text of Ramayana and Mahabharata are being reviewed.

The prominent rasa of Ramayana is being discussed. In Ramayana, there is Shringaara, Vipralambha Shringaara, Karuna, Vira, kroda, etc. शोकः श्लोकत्वमागतः | So shoka or sorrow is the staayibhaava of this entire epic. The last scene ends with Sita entering the earth. As Karunaa has been present from start to end, it is the prominent (angi) rasa of Ramayana.

[Side note: Example of Krodha

न स संकुचितः पंथा येन वाली हतो गतः |
समये तिष्ठ सुग्रीव मा वालि पथम् अन्वगाः || ४-३०-८१

Oh, great-mighty Lakshmana, you may proceed to Kishkindhaa and let Sugreeva know through you, as to how my fury takes shape, and oh, brave one, he may betold this word also, ‘Oh, Sugreeva, abide by your commitment. The path by which slain Vaali has gone is not tapered off, as such do not tread Vaali’s path.]

Next, Mahaabhaarata is taken up. In most of the Parvaas it is mainly fight and hence Vira is a rasa. There are also Shringaara and Shoka or Karuna. But Anandavardhana says that the prominent rasa of Mahabharata is Shanta rasa. Anukramani is the contents. In the anukramani of Mahabharata, there is no reference to the term Shanta. Then, how can it be taken as the main rasa? Anandavardhana says that the most obvious thing should not be stated explicitly. It should be understood through Dhvani. In the Anukramani, there is one verse. ‘ भगवान्वासुदेवश्च कीर्त्यतेऽत्र सनातनः’   — ‘ भगवान्+वासुदेव:+च कीर्त्यते+अत्र सनातनः’ The meaning of Vaasadeva is not the son of Vasudeva. Sanaatanaa is eternal. Vasudeva’s son was not eternal. वसति इति वासु: | वासु: च असौ देव: च वासुदेवः | The praise of that eternal god is being sung in the entire Mahaabhaarata. That god is the personification of Shanta. Even if the other characters like Arjuna and Bhima are described in the Bhaarata, only this Vaasudeva is the main character. Bharata is a Kavya and it is also a Shashtra. As a Kavya, Krishna is the ultimate. As a Shashtra, Shantha is the ultimate. All the rasas culminate in Shantha.

स्वं स्वं निमित्तमासाद्य शान्ताद्भावः प्रवर्तते । । ६.८२*४ । ।
पुनर्निमित्तापाये च शान्त एवोपलीयते ।

स्वं स्वं निमित्तम्+आसाद्य शान्तात्+भावः प्रवर्तते ।
पुन: निमित्त+अपाये च शान्त एव+उपलीयते । |

Taking their own nimittaas from Shanta, all bhavas occur. Resorting to its respective cause [each] bhaava arises from Shanta. After their cause, the bhaavas cling to Shanta only. So Shantha rasa is the prominent rasa of Bhaarata.

Different types of Dhvani

Vastu Dhvani, Alamkaara Dhvani and Rasa Dhvani are one way of classifying Dhvani, which was explained earlier. Another way of classification is as follows.

अस्ति ध्वनिः | स चासावविवक्षितवाच्यो विवक्षितान्यपरवाच्यश्चेतिद्विविधः सामान्येन |

(१) अविवक्षितवाच्य:
(१.१) अर्थान्तरसङ्क्रमितवाच्या
(१.२) अत्यन्ततिरस्कृतवाच्या

(२) विवक्षितान्यपरवाच्य:
(२.१) संलक्ष्यक्रमव्यङ्ग्य
(२.२) असंलक्ष्यक्रमव्यङ्ग्य


तदा जायन्ते गुणा यदा ते सहृदयैर्गृह्यन्ते |
रविकिरणानुगृहीतानि भवन्ति कमलानि कमलानि ||

तदा जायन्ते गुणा: यदा ते सहृदयै: गृह्यन्ते |
रविकिरण+अनुगृहीतानि भवन्ति कमलानि कमलानि ||

Merits do become merits where refined critics consider them so. Lotuses will be lotus as only when the rays of sun shelter them.

Anandavardhana gives his own verse as an example. A guna is a guna only when the friends recognize it. A lotus will be a lotus only when it is blessed by the sun’s rays. The second time usage of lotus could mean different things like the abode of Lakshmi, sakala soundarya aakara, etc. The second usage is the अर्थान्तरसङ्क्रमितवाच्या.   [Note: KSOU material – Here the second “Lotuses” is suggestive example of expressed meaning totally discarded WHICH IS WRONG].

विवक्षितान्यपरवाच्य: = विवक्षितवाच्य:

See note below


The order does not matter. Shatapatra-patrashata-beda-nyaayaa. The order in which they were cut does not matter when 100 lotuses (Shatapatra) are cut, because of the quickness. In the same way, the overall feeling is understood while going through the work, without having to analyze each aspect for identifying the specific bhaavaa there. On account of the quickness, the order is not noticed. Note that it is not said that the order or क्रम is not present. It is only unnoticed – असंलक्ष्य.

An example from Kuvalayaananda – नागरिक! समधिकोन्नतिरिह महिषः कोऽयमुभयतः पुच्छः। नहि नहि करिकलभोऽयं शुण्डादण्डोऽयमस्य न तु पुच्छम्‌॥ A person sees the elephant for the first time and is surprised that it is having tail on both sides. Another person clarifies that it is an elephant and the one in the front is trunk and not tail. How did this verse become Haasya rasa? It cannot be described. It could be because Man has ego. He thinks that he is better than others. So when another person does not know the elephant, while he knows it, he thinks high of himself.

Rasavadalamkaara swaroopa

रस: अस्मिन् अस्ति इति रसवत् | ( धनं अस्य अस्ति इति धनवान् | धनवान् इव) | The earlier alamkaarikaas mentioned that the alamkaaras that have rasa can be taken to be Rasavadalamkaaraa. Anandhavardhana does not agree with this. He said that where the rasa is prominent, it should be called as Rasadhvani. Rasa should be vyangya or suggested and it should be prominent. Sometimes, the rasa will be the anga or secondary to some other aspect. Usually the king is more important than the servant. But when the king is attending the marriage of the servant, in that situation, the servant gains prominence (भृत्य-विवाह-प्रवृत्त-राजवत्). Like that, in some remote cases, where some alamkaara gains more importance than the rasa, it will be called as rasavadalamkaara. It should be considered as Rasadhvani only when Rasa gains prominence.

प्रधान्येऽन्यत्र वाक्यार्थे यत्राङ्गं तु रसादयः |
काव्ये तस्मिन्नलङ्कारो रसादिरिति मे मतिः ||२.५ ||

प्रधान्ये+अन्यत्र वाक्यार्थे यत्र+अङ्गं तु रसादयः |
काव्ये तस्मिन्+अलङ्कार: रसादि: इति मे मतिः ||२.५ ||

If on the other hand, the chief meaning of the sentence should direct towards something else and if Rasa, etc. are to figure in only as subsidiary to it, that would be the case of Rasavadalankaara.

Where the vaakyaartha is important अन्यत्र वाक्यार्थे प्रधान्ये and rasa, bhava, etc. are only secondary यत्र रसादयः तु अङ्गम्, in those kaavyas तस्मिन् काव्ये, these secondary rasa, bhava, etc. will become Alamkaara रसादि: अलङ्कार:, is my opinion इति मे मतिः.

क्षिप्तो हस्तावलग्नः प्रसभमभिहतोऽप्याददानोऽशुकान्तं
गृह्णन् केशेष्वपास्तश्चरणनिपतितो नेक्षितः सम्भ्रमेण |
आलिङ्गन् योऽवधूतस्त्रिपुरयुवतिभिः साश्रुनेत्रोत्पलाभिः
कामीवार्द्रापराधः स दहतु दुरितं शाम्भवो वः शराग्निः ||

क्षिप्त: हस्तावलग्नः, प्रसभम् अभिहत: अपि आददान: अशुकान्तं
गृह्णन् केशेषु अपास्त: चरण-निपतित: नेक्षितः सम्भ्रमेण |
आलिङ्गन् यः अवधूतस्त्रिपुरयुवतिभिः साश्रुनेत्रोत्पलाभिः
कामी-वार्द्रापराधः स: दहतु दुरितं शाम्भव: वः शराग्निः ||

May that fiery arrow of Shiva burn down all our sins. That arrow who worked out in the form of a lover who has committed a new offence towards his beloved. Though avoided by the wives of Tripura with fear stricken lilly-like eyes, it would cling intently to their hands, though compellingly pushed out, it would still hold on to the tips of garment, though harshly pushed aside by the hair of its feather, it would fall at their feet and yet remain unrecognized due to their agitation, and despite it being pushed back, it would embrace them.

Tripura Samhaara is when Shiva kills three demons, who travel in space, as though in a space shuttle. Vishnu is the arrow.  Meru mountain is the bow. At a specific point of time, all three of them come in one line. Thus Shiva killed the demons. The fire comes and falls at the hands of the ladies (क्षिप्त: हस्तावलग्नः). Even when they push it (प्रसभम् अभिहत: अपि), it holds onto the edge of their sarees (आददान: अशुकान्तम्). The fire falls on their hair (गृह्णन् केशेषु अपास्त:). When they push it from there, it goes and falls at their feet (चरण-निपतित:). The poet says that the fire is like their lovers (कामी+वार्द्रापराधः). Even though there is karuna rasa in the act of protecting the people, here the prominent rasa is the vira or the prathaapa of Shiva. So this is rasavat alamkaara. In most of the slokas after all the praise, it concludes by seeking the blessings. In such cases, Karuna is not prominent.

हे हेरम्ब किमम्ब रोदिषि कुतः? कर्णौ लुठत्यग्निभूः
किं ते स्कन्द विचेष्टितं मम पुरा संख्या कृता चक्षुषाम्।
नैतत्तेप्युचितं गजास्य चरितं नासां मिमीतेऽम्ब मे
तावेवं सहसा विलोक्य हसितव्यग्रा शिवा पातु वः॥

Hasya rasaa is prominent and Karuna is not prominent though it ends saying let that Parvathi protect us. Hence this is Rasavadalamkaara.

[Side Note: Felicitation Volume in the honor of Prof. S. Ramachandra has an article by him on Rasavadalamkaara.  On the same topic, Sri V. Raghavan also wrote an article in that felicitation volume].

Samvaada – Correspondence – संवादः

Anandavardhana talks about Samvaada in the fourth chapter. Assume Shakespeare writes something. If the same thing is also said by our poets, say Kalidasa or Bhaaravi, we say that there is Samvaada or Correspondence or Similarity of thought. For example, what was found (like value of pi) by our great mathematician like Aryabhaatta and Bhaskaracharya was also found independently by European mathematicians. “Great minds think alike”. But, Krithi chauryaa – plagiarism – is stealing someone’s work.

संवादो ह्यन्यसादृश्यं तत्पुनः प्रतिबिम्बवत् |
आलेख्याकारवत्तुल्यदेहिवच्च शरीरिणाम् || 4. १२ ||

संवादः हि अन्यसादृश्यं तत् पुनः प्रतिबिम्बवत् |
आलेख्या+कारवत् तुल्य+देहिवत् च शरीरिणाम् || 4. १२ ||

Coincidence is nothing but correspondence with the other. It may be in the form of an image reflected in a mirror, like that of a picture, and like that of two individuals resembling one another.

In the first case, it is copying like bhimba pratibhimba or reflection (प्रतिबिम्बवत्). It is a copy. Second is like an artist who tries to draw on his own looking at the original आलेख्याकारवत् | आलेख्या is painting. Third one is resemblance – तुल्य देहिवत्. Similar – तुल्य.

तत्र पूर्वमनन्यात्म तुच्छात्म तदनन्तरम् |
तृतीयं तु प्रसिद्धात्म नान्यसाम्यं त्यजेत्कविः ||४.१३ ||

तत्र पूर्वम्+अनन्यात्म तुच्छ+आत्म तत्+अनन्तरम् |
तृतीयं तु प्रसिद्ध+आत्म न+अन्यसाम्यं त्यजेत्+कविः ||४.१३ ||

Of these, the first one has no individual existence of its own, the possibility of the send is not better than a non-entity. The third one of course has a concrete existence. A poet need not have to bypass similarity in themes.

In the first one (तत्र पूर्वम्), there is no atma (अनन्यात्म). In the second one (तत्+अनन्तरम्), through there is likeness it has empty soul (तुच्छ+आत्म). Looking at the picture, the person will be identified. Yet the soul is not present there. In the third (तृतीयं तु), the other one also has a soul of its own (प्रसिद्ध+आत्म). The kavi should not leave this (कविः अन्यसाम्यं न त्यजेत्).

Rajashekara in Kaavya Meemaamsaa mentions about Saadrushyaa showing some 16 types with examples. There are poets who translate the Sanskrit poet’s verses and include it in their works in the other regional languages.

परस्वादानेच्छाविरतमनसो वस्तु सुकवेः|
सरस्वत्येवैषा घटयति यथेष्टं भगवती  || ४.१७ ||

पर-स्वा-आदान-इच्छा-विरत-मनस: वस्तु सुकवेः |
सरस्वती एव एषा घटयति यथेष्टं भगवती  || ४.१७ ||

The Goddess of speech, Saraswati herself will help the deserving and talented poets in procuring the ideas provided they shun plagiarism.

If someone is keen on producing his own work, without copying, Saraswati herself will help him with a lot of ideas.

अतो ह्यन्यतमेनापि प्रकारेण विभूषिता |
वाणी नवत्वमायाति पूर्वार्थान्वयवत्यपि ||४.२||

अत: हि अन्यतमेन+अपि प्रकारेण विभूषिता |
वाणी नवत्वम्+आयाति पूर्वार्थ+अन्वयवती +अपि ||४.२||

By a mere contact of even a single variety of suggestion out of the many that have been enlisted earlier, the poets’ expression will gain novelty though it might present a hackneyed idea.

पूर्वार्थ+अन्वयवति अपि – Even if it is follows the earlier poet’s thoughts.  It is acceptable if the poet creates it with dhvani. The subject might be the same. But if I enhance it with my own individuality including dhvani (अन्यतमेन प्रकारेण विभूषिता वाणी) , then there is no fault. It becomes a new one नवत्वम्+आयाति.

Example. Someone praises the simha that because of its own tejas, it is invincible. “स्वतेजःक्रीतमहिमा केनान्येनातिशय्यते”. Later another poet writes “ यः प्रथमः प्रथमः …  श्वापदगणेषु सिंहः सिंहः केनाधरीक्रियते” The person who is Numero Uno – number one, i.e., the most important person will be the most important person. In the same way, the lion will be a lion, being the best among the animals. Because of this dhvani अर्थान्तरसङ्क्रमितवाच्या, it is a new idea and it is not considered as a copying.

<End of fourth session>

<Start of fifth session>


Kaavyaadharsha is a work by Dhandi. He is believed to have lived in the 7th century AD. He lived near Kanchipuram in Tamil Nadu. He has other works like Dashakumaara Charita, Avanti Sundari Kathaa to his credit. In Avanti Sundari Kathaa, he has mentioned about his own life – how his ancestors came from North India, one of them named Dhamodaraa was his forefather, and states his own experiences. Kaavyaadharsha was a very popular text on Sanskrit Poetics. It had been translated into various languages more than 1000 years ago. It was translated into Tibetan language. This work is also the source for one of the earliest Kannada work – Kavi Raaja Maarga. Even later writers have also referred to this work. Many verses of Kaavyaadharsha reflect what is said by Bhaama in Kaavyaalamkaara. They appear to be similar to Bhaama’s work, (probably Dhandhi had borrowed from Bhaama) along with Dhandi’s own opinions. There are many Sanskrit commentaries on Kaavyaadharsa like those by Vaali Jangaala, Ratna Sri Jnaana and Taruna Vaachaspati. It continues to be a very popular work across the world.


Naatyashaashtra is a work by Bharata Muni. It consists of 36 chapters. Its commentary is called Abhinava Bharati, which is written by Abhinava Gupta. This Naatyashaashtra describes all aspects of Drama and these performing arts. He describes 10 types of Dramas or Rupakas namely, Nataka, Prakarana, Samavakara, Ihamrga, Dima, Vyayoga, Anka, Prahasana, Bhana and Vithi. During his time, the art of Drama had developed very well.

स ध्वनिरिति सूरिभिः कथितः

यत्रार्थः शब्दो वा तमर्थमुपसर्जनीकृतस्वार्थौ |
व्यङ्क्तः काव्यविशेषः स ध्वनिरिति सूरिभिः कथितः || १३ ||

यत्र+अर्थः शब्द:+वा तम्+अर्थम्+उपसर्जनी+कृतस्वार्थौ |
व्यङ्क्तः काव्य+विशेषः स: ध्वनि:+इति सूरिभिः कथितः || १३ ||

This is the definition of Dhvani. See the details given above.

शूरश्च कृतविद्यश्च यश्च जानाति सेवितुम् – Explain

सुवर्णपुष्पां पृथिवीं चिन्वन्ति पुरुषास्त्रयः |
शूरश्च कृतविद्यश्च यश्च जानाति सेवितुम् ||

सुवर्ण+पुष्पां पृथिवीं चिन्वन्ति पुरुषा: त्रयः |
शूर: च कृतविद्य: च य: च जानाति सेवितुम् ||

There are plenty of golden flowers in this world. Only 3 types of people can gather it – namely warriors (valorous in battle), Scholar (one who has mastered any vidhya) and people who know how to serve.

This is an example of Deepaka alamkaara. Three people have the same common factor of being able to gather the golden flowers. In such verses, there will be Dhvani. But the prominence is not for Dhvani. The prominence is for the one who serves. The common factor applies to the other two types of people also. Deepa iva deepakam. Like the deepa lit in the door step, that lights the house, also lights outside.

Contribution of Anandavardhana to Alamkaara Shastra

Until the time of Anandavardhana, all the theorists were paying attention to the superficial factors like figures of speech, alliteration, simile, metaphor, etc. It was Anandavardhana who changed the course of Sanskrit Poetics. His period is a milestone. The era before and post Anandavardhana are different. He propounded Dhvani. The true enjoyment of Kavya comes due to the Dhvani. There are Vastu Dhvani, Alamkaara Dhvani and Rasa Dhvani, amongst which Rasa Dhvani give the supreme enjoyment. अलङ्कारत्वसाधनम् (explained below) is a major contribution of Anandavardhana. Also Anandavardhana was the first one to provide criticism of a literary work as a whole. Until then, the critics were paying attention to only particular stanzas, word or sentences. He discussed about Prabhanda Dhvani, the Dhvani or the main sentiment that is present in the whole work.


रसभावादितात्पर्यमाश्रित्य विनिवेशनम् |
अलङ्कृतीनां सर्वासामलङ्कारत्वसाधनम् ||2.6

रस+भावादि+तात्पर्यम्+आश्रित्य विनिवेशनम् |
अलङ्कृतीनां सर्वासाम्+अलङ्कारत्व+साधनम् ||

It is only the use of Alamkaaraas in view of the principal idea of Rasa, Bhaava etc. that really proves as sources of charm.

When the ornaments are kept for display in the shop, it is not serving the purpose of an ornament. Only when someone wears it, it becomes a decorative item. Just the presence of alamkara in a poem does not have any significance unless it becomes a decoration for the Dhvani in the poem.

काव्यस्य आत्मा ध्वनि: with example

In Meghadoota, there is Vipralambha Shringaara (see earlier note).

विवक्षितान्यपरवाच्य: = विवक्षितवाच्य:

Where there is no hindrance to the vaachyaartha and yet another meaning flashes, that is विवक्षितान्यपरवाच्य: = विवक्षितवाच्य dhvani. वक्तुम् इच्छा विवक्षा | Vivaksha is the desire to express. Vivakshita is the message that the poet wants to express.

The two types within it are संलक्ष्यक्रमव्यङ्ग्यand असंलक्ष्यक्रमव्यङ्ग्य. Any shloka that has rasa or bhava is an example for असंलक्ष्यक्रमव्यङ्ग्य. The stotra will sing the praise of the deity and there would be a prayer for protection also. So, any stotra can also become an example of Bhava Dhvani as there will be Bhakti Bhaava in it. For संलक्ष्यक्रमव्यङ्ग्य, verses having the Vastu Dhvani or Alamkaara Dhvani are examples.

काव्ये प्रतिभा

प्रतिभा = जन्मान्तर संस्कार: | Poets are born and not made. Some say that only the poets who have the Prathibha (talent or power of imagination or the creative intuition) can write poems. Some say that even the Prathibha (talent) can be learnt and gained. There are some actors who become great even without going to the film institute. There are some film institute students who fail to become good actors.

नाकवित्वमधर्माय व्याधये दण्डनाय वा ।
कुकवित्वं पुनः साक्षान्मृतिमाहुर्मनीषिणः ।। १.१२ ।।

“Not writing poetry is no crime; it won’t cause illness or lead to punishment; but writing bad poetry is a living death”, says Bhaamah in Kaavyaalamkaara.

न केवलं प्रतिभा अपि तु

शक्तिर्निपुणता लोकशास्त्रकाव्याद्यवेक्षणात् ।
काव्यज्ञशिक्षयाभ्यास इति हेतुस्तदुद्भवे ॥ काप्र-३ ॥

शक्ति: + निपुणता लोक+शास्त्र+काव्यादि+अवेक्षणात् ।
काव्यज्ञ+शिक्षयाभ्यास: इति हेतु:+तत्+उद्भवे ॥ काप्र-३ ॥

According to Mammata, the author of Kaavya Prakaasha, 3 factors become one cause (hetu) of poetry. Shakti and Prathibha are synonyms. One has to gain expertise by studying the grammar in the shashtras. You have to study what is already mentioned in the Kaavyaas of other poets and avoid repeating it. The third point is to practice (अभ्यास:) and get trained (शिक्षया) under the direction of those (काव्यज्ञ:) who know to write poems.

Auchitya औचित्यम्

Refer notes given above. औचित्यम् = propriety – suitableness – it is the bhava of uchita. उचितम् = proper. It is the soul of all beauty. Without propriety, whatever you do, will be wrong. You cannot wear a very beautiful pair of shoes around your neck. If it is not proper, it becomes a matter of ridicule. The auchitya is decided according to the main rasa. The characters have 3 types of prakruti – daivi prakruti, aasuree prakruti or maanavee prakruti. Based on their prakruti, everything else should match like the dress and the mannerism. There is another thing called Sandarba auchitya. What is appropriate in such situation has to be considered. Most importantly the rasa’s auchitya has to be ensured.

अनौचित्यादृते नान्यद्रसभन्गस्य कारणम् |
प्रसिद्धौचित्यबन्धस्तु रसस्योपनिषत्परा || ३. १४++ ||

Refer the meaning given earlier. Mention that A Kashmiri poet, Kshemendra has written a work called Auchitya Vichaara Charchaa.

मुख्यतया प्रकाशमानो व्यङ्ग्योऽर्थो ध्वनेरात्मा

मुख्यतया प्रकाशमानो व्यङ्ग्योऽर्थो ध्वनेरात्मा |
स च वाच्यार्थापेक्षयाकश्चिदलक्ष्यक्रमतया प्रकाशते ,
कश्चिद्क्रमेणेति द्विधा मतः ||after २||

मुख्यतया प्रकाशमान: व्यङ्ग्य: अर्थ: ध्वने: आत्मा |
स: च वाच्यार्थ अपेक्षयाकश्चित् अलक्ष्यक्रमतया प्रकाशते ,
कश्चित् क्रमेण इति द्विधा मतः ||after २||

Sentiment (Rasa), emotion (bhaava), the semblance of sentiment (Rasaabhaasa), semblance of motion (bhaavaabhaasa) or mood and that rise and cessation – all these from undiscerned sequantiality. It is decided that when there is prominent presence of the variety, that would be the very soul of suggestion.

Even when the suggested meaning is present, if it is not enjoining importance and pre-eminence, then it should not be called as Dhvani. There are different meanings given to the term Dhvani. One is the best type of poetry – Atyuttama Kaavya. Dhvani also means the suggested meaning. The word that has the suggested meaning is also called Dhvani. The vyanjanaa vyaapaara which is the function that indicates the suggested meaning is also Dhvani. Dhvani is used in five different senses.

रसादिरर्थो हि सहेव वाच्येनावभासते |

रसादिरर्थो हि सहेव वाच्येनावभासते |
स चाङ्गित्वेनावभासमानोध्वनेरात्मा |

रसादि: अर्थ: हि सह इव वाच्येन+अवभासते | after 2.3

It would seem like the vaachyaartha and the vyangyaartha are coming together. Kaarana has to be present before the Kaarya. Since Vaachyaartha is the Kaarana, it has to be present even before the Kaarya which is the Vyangyaartha. But the gap is so less that it feels as though they are there together. The Rasaadi Dhvanis are inseparable with the Vaachyaartha. They might seem to come together. But there is a clear order in the vastu dhvani and alamkaara dhvani where the vaachyaartha occurs first and then comes the vyangyaartha.

एवंवादिनि देवर्षौ पार्श्वे पितुरधोमुखी |
लीलाकमलपत्राणि गणयामास केवलम् || after 2.22

एवं+वादिनि देवर्षौ पार्श्वे पितु: अधोमुखी |
लीला+कमल+पत्राणि गणयामास केवलम् || after 2.22

This shloka is from Kumaara Sambhava. The Sapta Rishis have come. Narada comes and tells Himaalaya that Shiva is the suitable groom for Parvathi and that he has agreed to marry Parvathi. When Narada was talking in this way (एवं+वादिनि देवर्षौ), Parvathi was standing next to her father with head facing down (पार्श्वे पितु: अधोमुखी). She was holding a lotus for play (leela) लीला+कमल+पत्राणि.  She started seriously counting its petals (गणयामास केवलम्). The bhava of shyness is suggested.

संवादास्तु भवन्त्येव बाहुल्येन सुमेधसाम् |  4.11 |

सुमेधसाम् बाहुल्येन संवादा: तु भवन्ति एव |

Samvaada is Correspondence or Similarity of thought. Refer notes given earlier. The thoughts of two poets might concur. सु+मेधाः = The ability to retain the knowledge is Medhaa i.e., the धारण after ग्रहण. It is the retentive memory.

(Side Note: प्रातिपदिकम् – मेधस् ; Panini sutra – नित्यमसिच् प्रजामेधयोः॥ ५।४।१२२.  There will always be आसीच् प्रत्यय for the words प्रजा and मेधा. Eg for प्रजाः is in Venkatesha Suprabhatam – कौसल्याः सुप्रजाः राम – there the प्रातिपदिकम् is सुप्रजस्). There will be samvaada among great poets and it cannot be avoided. Refer the earlier notes on three types. In the case where both come up with the same thought, one cannot reject the other, though there is similarity. In other cases, it becomes Kruti Chaurya.


दोष means मुख्यार्थ-हानिः – the factor that prevents the main meaning from being understood. A blemish that damages or destroys the desired meaning is kaavya dosha. पददोष,  वाक्यदोष, अर्थदोष, रसदोष, etc., are the types of faults. पददोष’s example would be spelling mistakes. वाक्यदोष where there could be some grammatical mistakes like singular-plural mismatch between कर्तृ and क्रिया. Rasa is most important. रसदोष is the blemish that damages the rasa. It is acceptable even if a गुण or good quality is missing. But it is not acceptable to have a दोष. Not having a दोष itself is an अलंकार.

Definition of Kavya or Poetry given by Mammata in Kavya Prakashaa – तत् अदोषौ शब्दार्थौ सगुणौ अनलंकृती पुनः क्वापि (काव्यप्रकाश 1.4)   –  इति काव्यलक्षणं | The first condition is that there should not be any fault अदोषौ.


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