agnicayanaにおける動物供犠  [in Japanese] The Animal Sacrifice of the Agnicayana  [in Japanese]

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It is reported that in the animal sacrifice of the Agnicayana, five animals including a man are beheaded. In this paper we deal with the brāhmaņic interpretation of the animal sacrifice, using the following eight texts: Black Yajurveda: Taittirīya Samhitā 5.1.8,; Kāţhaka Samhitā (KS) 19.8-9, 20.8; Maitrāyaņi Samhita (MS) 3.1.10, 3.2.7; Baudhāyana Śrauta Sūtra (BŚS) 10.9-12; Mānava Śrauta Sūtra (MŚS) White Yajurveda: Śatapatha Brāhmaņa (ŚB),,; Kātyāyana Śrauta Sūtra (KŚS) 16.1.5-45. First, we give an outline of this sacrifice by studying the three Śrauta Sūtras, and find that they differ from each other in two important matters, namely, (1) how to obtain a human head and (2) which and how many animals are actually sacrificed. Second, the Samhitās are examined, referring to the above-mentioned outline. The three Samhitās share similarities in the treatment of the two matters. They do not mention (1) and give almost the same instructions for (2). Third, the ŚB is examined in the same way. As regards (2), the ŚB rejects the alternatives which the KŚS suggests. The ŚB does not mention (1) and the purification of the human head, but talks about an order for killing the victims and about the rope with which the victims are tied to the sacrificial post. The KŚS also mentions the rope and explains how to kill a human victim. Fourth, we show the characteristics of the ŚB. It tends to explain the animal sacrifice in the form of the Prajāpati myth, and tells the reason why the heads are kept and the bodies are thrown away into the waters and shows the concept of uniting the trunks (the five layers of the fire altar) with the heads. In the ŚB a sacrificer piles up the fire altar to restore Prajāpati, who created the world through his own dismemberment. The head and trunk concept is surely not irrelevant to this purpose. The fact that the White Yajurveda is interested only in the action of killing suggests that the action was not carried out any more at that time, so that it was a safe topic. On the contrary, the way of obtaining the human head indicated by the Black Yajurveda seems proper and reliable, and so it is safe to say that this method was really accepted. Evidence of this can be derived from the fact that the ŚB does not mention the purification of a human head at all. This means the ŚB has no interest in the matter. Given that at the time of the ŚB real heads were not used, we might ask why the ŚB rejects the use of counterfeit heads of gold or clay. It could be that the ŚB focuses attention on the importance and meaning of using a head, and it may have been effective for this to give the impression that real heads were used.


  • Studies in Indian philosophy and Buddhism,Tokyo University

    Studies in Indian philosophy and Buddhism,Tokyo University (8), 18-29, 2001-03



  • NII Article ID (NAID)
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  • Article Type
    departmental bulletin paper
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  • NDL Article ID
  • NDL Source Classification
    ZH2(哲学・宗教--哲学) // ZH7(哲学・宗教--宗教--仏教)
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  • Data Source
    NDL  IR 
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