How to find out the metaphor?

The Fifth Aphorism - Saddressam.

The basic concept of this aphorism was, artists have to find out the nearest form of a specific object from nature or anywhere as a metaphor that will be able to establish the equivalence and represent that from in a more artistic way. In another word, the author reported about the metaphorical similarity of an object which has hidden anywhere of nature in an imperceptible way. The meaning of SADDRESSAM is - Find out the resemblance (direct or indirect) between two separate objects from surrounded nature.

Ajanta Cave Painting.

 From the very far past, Indian and oriental artists consistently have tried to accept any object by their own perception and meditative emotion. We can see a lot of examples of these words if we consider watching deeply old Indian and oriental paintings and cave paintings of Ajanta, Elora, Vaja and more. By following this tradition, it is quite easy to understand why Indian artists rejected the materialism, why did they reject the coarseness. It is the actual starting point of freedom of an artist. They were always happy to express their emotions, feelings and other humanistic values in their creation by simplifying the form and maintaining the continence in the use of color, whereas they denied every restriction of maintaining the actually visible form of an object that encumbers the composition. Because it limited their artistic vision, it bounds the freedom. Here is nothing any liberty to express them. It is the fact that the human mind has an inventive power by nature and it induces to reveal the hidden beauty of an object by the deep observation with an artistic inner vision. Thus, it helps to create an intuition in the inner mind of an artist regarding surrounded nature. It also gives the imaginative force to the artist’s mind and encourages enjoying the flavor of life.

I am just surprised to see this type of innovative concept had been operating in the third century or so. At the far past of the third century, the author not only made the emancipation to the contemporary art world from the restriction of the realistic form but also guided to artists, how they open the windows of their artistic vision.  Author precepted to artists,- “to follow my advice, you have to concentrate your mind on my words and have to realize it. You will never be able to open your windows until you would like to destroy his type of committed environment.

When the author started finding the metaphors of the shapes of the several parts of the human figure, he inspired by our surrounded nature, as we noticed at the first time of composing new scales of music. At that time, ancient sages got the ideas of musical quality from the voices of peacock, elephant, horse, dove and more. I hashed out about it in details on my previous articles regarding the musical paintings.

Lord Buddha begging on the street. His son and wife is giving something to Lord.

Please bear in mind that in the platform of modern art and music, all artists are acquiring those concepts in respectful mind and consider the best. I said in the past, that author mainly inspired by the spiritual trend of that era, therefore, when he started reformation the shape of a human frame, he turned over the throne of God to men. We have noticed the formulation of this concept when we observed old Indian paintings or carvings where artists depicted a portrait of the baron larger than other figures of the composition. It looks some odd, but it was their ambition to draw the attention on that eligible person, and also wanted to represent that person similar to God. An example of JATAK series performed as the former birth of Lord Buddha painted in the Ajanta cave where Lord Buddha is begging on the street and people watching him curiously. On that painting, the figure of Lord Buddha portrayed bigger than other people of the same place and distance. Grammatically it looking odd, but it is right in the expressive mode. I found this painting enclosed at the right side where Rahul (son of Lord) and Yashodhara (wife of Lord) giving something to Lord Buddha at the time of his begging. It's a masterpiece painting of Ajanta representing a highly emotional environment. Rahul had no idea about his father and asked his mom curiously, who is the beggar? But mom did not answer this question rather politely asked her son, give the beggar some rice. Buddha knew it very well that the little boy is his son. But according to the law of Buddhist mendicants, he never introduced himself.  Just think about this heartbreaking situation.  

Granting to the imagination regarding the glamor of the Goddess, the author has brought the example of a streak of lighting, however, to find out the metaphor of her facial expression; he imagined the moonlight. When he was going to narrate about the neck of a man, he found the resemblance in the bull. Waist of a man would be similar to a lion. To describe female lips, the author gave the example of the color of the rising sun. Eyebrow came from the idea of a bow. Eyes described as the eyes of wagtail bird or doe’s eyes.  A metaphor of the female breast has come from a round shaped earthen water jar. The petal of lotus represented the female feet. The idea of the female thigh has come from the plantain tree. A few places, I found the description of the proboscis of the elephant as a metaphor of female thigh, but the plantain tree was most popular. There are numerous unique descriptions regarding human figure on that book, composed by the oldest sages. All of those examples they have taken from nature and animals. At the time of the description of any noble person, the author described their eyes will stretch up to the ear. It was the main identification of a god-like person.

Holy family of Goddess Parvati. Modern Indian painting. Artist - Jamini Roy.

The above painting is an example of application of the said aphorism depicted by the most honorable Indian artist named  Jamini Roy by following the Indian traditional concept.  

Art, poem, and literature are several branches of a tree of artistry. The idea of the metaphor was not only applicable for painting, rather from that era, it was accordingly performed in all the said platforms and it was a trend to discover a new metaphor to prove the talent. This trend has also helped artists to increase their power of exploration. They were not only artists but also a discoverer.

Probably they loved nature and its elements very much and they confessed to nature as their teacher.   

Now we will try to find out the gist of the above discussion. 

1. What is the meaning of SUDDRESSAM?

The meaning of SADDRESSAM is - Find out the resemblance (direct or indirect) in an artistic way between two separate objects from surrounded nature.


2. How to find out the resemblance or metaphor in anywhere of our surrounded nature?

It depends on the artistic intuition that comes from practice.


3. What’s the utility of a metaphor?

It would be the more artistic or poetic way to describe a subject by using the metaphor that helps you to say a lot in a couple of words.



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Last updated on - 07.12.2023