Kavyamimamsa of Rajasekhara (Study)

by Debabrata Barai | 2014 | 105,667 words

This page relates ‘Alamkara theory and position of the Kavyamimamsa’ of the English study on the Kavyamimamsa of Rajasekhara: a poetical encyclopedia from the 9th century dealing with the ancient Indian science of poetics and rhetoric (also know as alankara-shastra). The Kavya-mimamsa is written in eighteen chapters representing an educational framework for the poet (kavi) and instructs him in the science of applied poetics for the sake of making literature and poetry (kavya).

Part 2 - Alaṃkāra theory and position of the Kāvyamīmāṃsā

Alaṃkāra School is coming after the Rasa School and this Alaṃkāra School is propounded by the ālaṃkārika Bhāmaha. However Ācārya Udbhaṭa, Daṇḍin, Rudraṭa also counted under this school. They all are the ālaṃkārikas of under Alaṃkāra School accepted the rasa but they are gives the most prominent place of Alaṃkāras then the rasa and established Alaṃkāras as the soul of the poetry.

Ācārya Bharatamuni though does not give them any definition of Alaṃkāras but he also defines the Upamā, Rūpaka, Dīpaka and Yamaka in his Nāṭyaśāstra Ācārya

Bhāmaha realized that Alaṃkāras as the essential things of poetry and Vakrokti as the sarvālaṃkāra by the saying:

ko'laṅkāro'nayā binā |”

- Kāvyālaṃkāra (of Bhāmaha) of Bhāmaha: II/ 85

Because Bhāmaha thinks that, without any ornament no one can see the more beautiful, so ornament is very must essential for the more beautifying poetry and says:

na kāntamapi nirbhuṣaṃ vibhāti vanitānanam |”

- Kāvyālaṃkāra (of Bhāmaha) of Bhāmaha: I/ 13

In this same way the poetry without alaṃkāra is not charming full by the readers. Ācārya Daṇḍin gives the importance of Atiśayokti and Śleṣa alaṃkāra and he also supported the Bhāmaha’s treatment about alaṃkāras by the recognizing alaṃkāras as the kāvya-dharma. Daṇḍin accepted that alaṃkāras is the beautifying element of poetry. Though Bhāma’s vakrokti and Daṇḍin’s atiśayokti highlighted the same treatment about the poetry but there Daṇḍin’s concepts of atiśayokti is found more important than Bhāmaha’s treatment of vakrokti for the definition of alaṃkāras.

Then Ācārya Vāmana in his Kāvyālaṃkārasūṭra-vṛtti define alaṃkāras as the two ways i.e. traditional alaṃkāras and Soundaryālaṃkāras. In the beginning of his work he wrote:

kāvyaṃgrāhyamalaṅkāra |”

- Kāvyālaṃkārasūṭra-vṛtti of Vāmana: I/1/1

Means:

kāvya (poetry) is accepted for the alaṃkāras.”

And another type is Soundaryālaṃkāras, where Guṇas are the beautifying element of poetry and there alaṃkāras are the most beautifying the guṇas. In this way some ancient rhetoricians not only gives the prominent place of alaṃkāras in kāvya (poetry) but they also established it one and only major portion in kāvya (poetry). Then the Mahimabhaṭṭa in his Vyaktiviveka used the word ‘cārutva’ for the alaṃkāras and says that by the ‘bicchiti’ combination of Śabda (word) and Artha (meaning) is the developed the kāvys (poetry).

Further Ācārya Kuntaka, the author of Vakroktijīvita realized alaṃkāras as ‘Svarūpādhāyaka dharma’ in kāvys (poetry). And Jayadeva, in his Candrāloka criticizes the Mammaṭa’s concepts of kāvys (poetry) in the Kāvyaprakāśa as: ‘alaṃkṛtī punaḥ kvāpi’|[1] and says that sometimes kāvys (poetry) will be consists of Śabda and Ārtha without alaṃkāras.

C.f.

alaṃkaroti yaḥ kāvyaṃ śavdārthāvanalaṃkṛti |
asau na manyate kasmādanuṣṇamanalaṃ kṛtī || ”

- Candraloka of Jaydeva:

Means:

“If Mammaṭa accepted the kāvys (poetry) without alaṃkāras so to whom fire will be present without spark.”

In this way we can notice that the Ācāryas of Alaṃkāra School accepted irrelevant the rasa’s than the alaṃkāras in kāvya (poetry) and rasa is the under of Rasavat Alaṃkāras.

C.f

rasavaddarśitaspaṣṭa śṛṅgārādirasaṃ yathā |”

- Kāvyālaṃkāra (of Bhāmaha) of Bhāmaha: III/ 6

And, “

madhuraṃ rasavadvāci vastunyapi rasasthiti || ”

- Kāvyādarśa of Daṇḍin: III/51

So before the Rājaśekhara’s time we can see that the Alaṃkāra School was fully developed and he was fully aware about absolute of Alaṃkāra theory.

In the Kāvyamīmāṃsā, Yāyāvarīya Rājaśekhara says that:

śikṣā, kalpo, vyākaraṇaṃ, niruktaṃ , chandovicitiḥ, jyaṃ, ṣaḍaṅgāni” ityācāryāḥ| ‘upakārakatvādalaṅkāraḥ saptamaṅgam’ iti yāyāvarīyaḥ |

- Kāvyamīmāṃsā of Rājaśekhara: Ch-II, Pp- 3

Meaning is,

“Ancient Ācāryas posits that Śikṣā (science of proper articulation and pronounciation or Phonetics), Kalpa (Rituls), Vyākaraṇa (Grammer), Nirukta (Explanation Difficult Vedic words), Chanda (The Science of Prosody or Metrics) and Jyotiṣa (Astronomy), are the six auxiliaries to the study of Vedas.”

But Yāyāvarīya Rājaśekhara added with them another one ‘Alaṃkāraśāstra’ as the seventh Vedāṅga (discipline auxiliary to the Vedas).

Then he also says: comprehension of the Vedas remains incomplete without an auxiliary knowledge of rhetorical figures.

ṛte ca tatsarupapariñjānādvedārthānavagateḥ |”

- Kāvyamīmāṃsā of Rājaśekhara: Ch-II, Pp- 6

In this way, Rājaśekhara gives the importance of Alaṃkāraśāstra not only in kāvya (poetry) but Śāstra’s (science of Scripture) also. However Bhāmaha, Daṇḍin, Udbhaṭa and Rudraṭa most of the rhetoricians’ gives the importance of Alaṃkāraśāstras but their perplexes limited under the kāvya (poetry).

Hence, Rājaśekhara gives the essentiality of alaṃkāras in whole of the literature and defines the kāvya (poetry) consists as combined with guṇas and alaṃkāras by saying:

‘guṇavadalaṅkṛtañca vākyameva kāvyam’ |

- Kāvyamīmāṃsā of Rājaśekhara: Ch-VI, Pp-24

In other respects, Rājaśekhara gives the importance of alaṃkāras and says: the alaṃkāras (figures of speech) anuprāśa (alliteration) and upamā (simile) etc. are the ornament of the kāvya (poetry).

C.f.

anuprāsopamādayaśca tvāmalaṅku rvanti |”

- Kāvyamīmāṃsā of Rājaśekhara: Ch-III, Pp- 6

In the first chapter Kavirahasya of Kāvyamīmāṃsā of Rājaśekhara, indicated the some alaṃkāras and their profounder’ names:

ānuprāsikaṃ pracetāyanaḥ, yamo yamakāni, citraṃ citraṅgadaḥ,
śavdaśle ṣaṃ śeṣaḥ, vāstavaṃ pulastaḥ, aupamyamaupakāyanaḥ,
parāśaraḥ, arthaśle ṣamutathyaḥ, ubhayālaṅkārikaṃ ku veraḥ
|”

- Kāvyamīmāṃsā of Rājaśekhara: Ch-I, Pp- 1

In this way various ālaṃkārikas from Bharata to Rājaśekhara only the Yāyāvarīya Rājaśekhara who dealt with alaṃkāras with their propounded names. There it may be seems that Rājaśekhara very much influenced by Rudraṭa because there he (Rājaśekhara) borrowed the name Vāstava or Svabhāvokti Alaṃkāra, Upamālaṃkāra, Atiśayolaṃkāra and artha-śleṣa as it is. There is an only difference is that Rudraṭa uses the vakrokti as the alaṃkāras but there Rājaśekhara does not agree with him and posit it as pātha-dharma.

In the description of eighteen adhikaraṇas (section) of Rājaśekhara’s Kāvyamīmāṃsā, there are only one adhikaraṇas (section) for each Rīti, Guṇa, Rasa, Doṣa and Rūpaka, but there are dedicated nine chapters for Śabdālaṃkāra and Arthālaṃkāras. It also seems the majesty of Alaṃkāra concepts on Rājaśekhara.

Footnotes and references:

[1]:

Kāvyaprakāśa of Mammaṭa: I/ 3

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