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 Post subject: Simile... as Gaeilge
PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb 2019 6:39 pm 
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Joined: Sat 13 Jun 2015 12:54 pm
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A chairde

I am perhaps in deep water here, but never-the-less, am trying to translate a line of Buddhist text (strictly for my personal practice):

Form is emptiness. Emptiness is also form.

I've come up with a few possibilities but need help because I am probably way off the mark. There seem to be multiple words for emptiness and form!

Is fíor é folús. Is folús é fíor chomh maith.

Bíonn an fíor folús.
Bíonn an folús fíor chomh maith.

Some of the words for emptiness:
folús, folúntus, foilmhe

Words for form:
foirm, deilbh, fíor (I settled on fíor because I liked the link between truth and form).


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 Post subject: Re: Simile... as Gaeilge
PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb 2019 7:27 pm 
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Caoimhín Albain nua wrote:
A chairde

I am perhaps in deep water here, but never-the-less, am trying to translate a line of Buddhist text (strictly for my personal practice):

Form is emptiness. Emptiness is also form.

I've come up with a few possibilities but need help because I am probably way off the mark. There seem to be multiple words for emptiness and form!

Is fíor é folús. Is folús é fíor chomh maith.

Bíonn an fíor folús.
Bíonn an folús fíor chomh maith.

Some of the words for emptiness:
folús, folúntus, foilmhe

Words for form:
foirm, deilbh, fíor (I settled on fíor because I liked the link between truth and form).


I don't know if fíor is a very natural fit for usage here, maybe someone more fluent can correct me on that.

Here's my own attempt:

Is folús é an riocht, is riocht é an folús chomh maith.


Edit: had to fix a typo. ríocht => riocht


Last edited by Ade on Mon 25 Feb 2019 9:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Simile... as Gaeilge
PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb 2019 9:00 pm 
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I'd, too, think riocht or cruth the better choice for "form" here.
Fíor is rather figure (and probably a Latin loan word)


BTW: fíor is feminine, so: ... í an fhíor if you choose it nevertheless. ;)


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 Post subject: Re: Simile... as Gaeilge
PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb 2019 11:48 pm 
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Location: Santa Cruz Mountains, California, USA
The editor in me feels compelled to point out that those are metaphors, not similes. ;)

Redwolf


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 Post subject: Re: Simile... as Gaeilge
PostPosted: Mon 25 Feb 2019 12:19 am 
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Redwolf... haha, yes, you are right. I got sidetracked by the use of "chomh maith" because most of my on-line research brough up a bunch of similes starting with "chomh". Thanks for being on the ball!

I've been trying to clarify my understanding of the Buddhist concept of "form" which is, typically Buddhist, quite a loaded word. Here are the Gaeilge options with their definitions... so confusing (and don't get me started on emptiness! There are 3 words all meaning void, vacuum, emptiness - folús, folúntas, foilmhe):

cruth, m. (gs. ~a, pl. ~anna).
1. Shape, appearance.
2. State, condition.
3. Manner, mode.

riocht, m. (gs. reachta, pl. ~aí; dpl. reachtaibh used in certain phrases).

1. Form, shape, guise.
2. State, condition, plight. Sa riocht sin, in that condition.
3. Capacity, capability.

fíor, f. (gs. ~ach, pl. ~acha).

1. Figure. Outward form; likeness, image. Art:Sculp: Fíor duine, human figure. Fíor nádúrtha, natural form. I bhfíor Dé, in God’s image.
2. Appearance, sign. Fíor na Croise, the sign of the Cross.
3. Configuration, outline.
4. Emblem, symbol.
5. Prefiguration, portent.
6. Fíor gheoiméadrach, geometric figure.


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 Post subject: Re: Simile... as Gaeilge
PostPosted: Mon 25 Feb 2019 2:44 pm 
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Redwolf wrote:
The editor in me feels compelled to point out that those are metaphors, not similes. ;)

Redwolf


:good:

In Buddhism, form, emptiness, and non-duality are aspects of existence:

Form is the quality of solidity, permanence, separateness, continuity, and definition.
Emptiness is the quality of insubstantiality, impermanence, indistinctness, discontinuity, and ambiguity.
Non-duality is the recognition that existence and experience are permeated by the qualities of form and emptiness. These qualities are in constant erratic flux. Our searches either for security (form) or excitement (emptiness) are based on attempts to control that flux.

I think "riocht" is good for form since according to the definition given above it includes "capacity" and "capability", the idea of "potential", the idea of one thing becoming its opposite with the feeling that they ultimately become the same thing. Form is/will be formless and vice versa.

As for the use of the word "emptiness", it's doesn't mean "nothing":

Speaking of emptiness Shunryu Suzuki said, “I do not mean voidness. There is something, but that something is something which is always prepared for taking some particular form.” Another time, speaking of the feeling tone of emptiness, he said, “Emptiness is like being at your mother’s bosom and she will take care of you.”
Could it be the "opposite" of "riocht" which could be translated using the adjective "éagruthach"?

"Is (rud) éagruthach é riocht. Is riocht é an rud éagruthach." ?


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 Post subject: Re: Simile... as Gaeilge
PostPosted: Mon 25 Feb 2019 3:12 pm 
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tiomluasocein wrote:
"Is (rud) éagruthach é riocht. Is riocht é an rud éagruthach." ?


Is maith liom é! Is there any reason why the noun éagruth could not be used instead of using the "rud éagruthach"?

The whole exercise of me translating this, besides being fun and interesting, is very "englightening" although I do not claim to be enlightened. Seriously, you really do have to understand what is being translated. So, go raith mile maith agaibh!


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 Post subject: Re: Simile... as Gaeilge
PostPosted: Mon 25 Feb 2019 7:06 pm 
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Caoimhín Albain nua wrote:
tiomluasocein wrote:
"Is (rud) éagruthach é riocht. Is riocht é an rud éagruthach." ?


Is maith liom é! Is there any reason why the noun éagruth could not be used instead of using the "rud éagruthach"?

The whole exercise of me translating this, besides being fun and interesting, is very "enlightening" although I do not claim to be enlightened. Seriously, you really do have to understand what is being translated. So, go raith mile maith agaibh!


I guess "éagruth" could be used. I wasn't sure if it could be used as it has other connotations such as "deformity".

Reading further into this whole thing, I found a great explanation of the "Heart Sutra" here:

https://jayarava.blogspot.com/2015/07/f ... ntary.html

where the author says the following (note he mentions simile becoming metaphor - hats off to Redwolf): :D

"A fairly standard Buddhist simile—experience is like an illusion—becomes a metaphor—experience is illusion—and then is given a seemingly deliberate, perhaps ideologically motivated, twist that makes it abstruse—experience is emptiness."

He goes on to suggest an alternative to "Form is . . ." as follows:

"If we are looking for a key line in the Heart Sutra, I suggest that it is, in fact, sarvadharmāḥ śūnyatālakṣanāḥ 'all mental events are characterised by lack of self-existence'. This is the underlying reason that 'form' is like an illusion."

Not everyone seems to agree where the sutra originally comes from although the majority say India. If the Buddha said it, or something similar, he would have used Pali. But most people believe the oldest written existing version is in Sanskrit.

"All mental events are characterised by lack of self-existence".
(Easpa den féin atá mar chomhartha sóirt ag eachtraí mheabhracha ar fad.) ??

Like Japanese does with its own orthography from Chinese, I'm tempted to transliterate the Sanskrit using Irish orthography:

Searbha d'arm a siúinéir atá loch seana.


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