Talk:Sabhya

From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

sabhya (‘fit for a sabhā’)

Derived from the word sabhā (assembly), it means one who is fit to be present at a congregation of elders and wise persons; hence a good and wise person.

If sabhā is taken to mean—in a more technical sense—a gambling hall, then a sabhya is the officer in charge of it (= sabhāpati).

However, sabhya is also the name of the last of the five, duly established, Vedic fires. It has to be kindled to the east of āhavanīya fire, either by attrition or from the embers of the āhavanīya fire. The hearth should be square, each side being twelve aṅgulas in length.

The origin of this sabhya fire is rather shrouded in mystery. If sabhā means a gambling hall (Rgveda 10.34.6), sabhya is the general fire lit up to keep the place warm in winter. The same argument holds good if sabhā means a big hall used as a rest-house, built by a rich person.

Opinions differ as regards its establishment for Vedic rituals. Some feel it is optional while others (vide Apastamba Śrautasutras 5.17.1) make it compulsory.


References

  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore

OLD CONTENT

sabhya (‘fit for a sabhā’) Derived from the word sabhā (assem¬bly), it means one who is fit to be present at a congregation of elders and wise persons; hence a good and wise person. If sabhā is taken to mean—in a more technical sense—a gambling hall, then a sabhya is the officer in charge of it (= sabhāpati). However, sabhya is also the name of the last of the five, duly established, Vedic fires. It has to be kindled to the east of āhavanīya fire, either by attrition or from the embers of the āhavanīya fire. The hearth should be square, each side being twelve aṅgulas in length. The origin of this sabhya fire is rather shrouded in mystery. If sabhā means a gambling hall (Rgveda 10.34.6), sabhya is the general fire lit up to keep the place warm in winter. The same argument holds good if sabhā means a big hall used as a rest-house, built by a rich person. Opinions differ as regards its estab¬lishment for Vedic rituals. Some feel it is optional while others (vide Apastamba Śrautasutras 5.17.1) make it compulsory.