[Advaita-l] madhyamAM / madhyagAM???

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Thu Mar 24 05:38:19 CDT 2011

Thank you Sriram ji for the valuable inputs.

The original verse:

सदाशिव-*समारम्भां* शंकराचार्य-*मध्यमाम्* ।
अस्मदाचार्य-*पर्यन्तां* वन्दे गुरु-परंपराम् ॥

contains the last word 'guru-paramparA' which is in stree linga.  The
dvitIyaa vibhakti for this is ..paramparAm.  All the other words in the
verse namely: samaarambhAm, madhyamAm and paryantAm are adjectives to that
word paramparAm.

We have several usages of the word 'madhya/ma' :

For first person, second person and third person in grammar, the sanskrit
equivalent is:  uttama puruSha, madhyama puruSha and prathama puruSha.  In
no way does the madhyama word here mean anything inferior to the other two

There is a famous verse:

मूलतो ब्रह्मरूपाय मध्यतो विष्णुरूपिणे
अग्रतः शिवरूपाय वृक्षराजाय ते नमः

The middle portion of the tree is in no way inferior to the other two
portions.  It only refers to the position, place.

As Sri Sarma ji conveyed, the word to denote 'medium' is 'माध्यमः’ and not
मध्यमा.  The latter word, in stree linga, has nothing to do with 'medium' as
used in 'English medium, Kannada medium, medium of instruction' etc.

Your showing the 'madhyaga' to mean 'amidst' is quite reasonable.  For
instance, we have this usage:

दशरथस्य चत्वारि पुत्राः आसन् । तेषु *मध्ये* राम एव रावणवधं कृतवान् ।

Dasharatha had four sons.  *Among them*, Rama alone killed Ravana.  Here,
'madhya' does not even mean 'middle' as a position.

'mAdhyamika' Bauddhas are said to be so referred to because they adopted the
'middle path', eschewing the extremes.


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