The person who finds whether the Buddha was left or right handed wins a prize! I’m left handed, so…
A bit off-topic, but does anyone know why most people are right-handed?
My following comment has nothing to do with EBT, just an addition of personal experience …
When I walk with my wife it is a big difference whether she walks on my right or my left side. I instinctively(?) prefer she walks on the right side, perhaps “naturally” my right hand is the more “differentating”/finemotoric instrument (as opposite to the “holding”/roughmotoric) left hand. It has also strongly different emotional content with it.
Analoguously, when I started my encounters with spiritual groups and we sat in a circle with the teacher/teacheress in line I liked it most to have a position where I could have him/her to my right hand/ear/eye, say three positions away, to also hear the voice best. I didn’t think about this then, but of course noticed my surprising preference…
I’m a bit trained to receive/give massage in the Osho-derived style and observe a strong emotional difference between the working with the left or the right hand (and get a more complete understanding of the person to whom I give the massage if I can manage both parts of my emotional/rational engaging with right and left hands together).
As far as I know the brain is physically shaped to have different functions on the left and on the right side (which is researched for instance with stroke-patients and different comeout when the stroke damaged the left or the right part of the brain, for instance when aphasia emerged and so on).
So for me it was always somehow natural when I read/understood the bhikkhus went clockwise around their master and I did not think deeper about this - because it agrees much with my approach to spiritually giving respect/attention. But well, perhaps this is opposite to what a left-hander would encounter; I just didn’t hear so far about this fine sensual aspects from an left-hander who is also sufficiently aware of his/her sensuality. Perhaps someone around here? I’m curious!
It seems to be an active research area.
Parma et al. (2017) write that
The vast majority of humans are right-handed, but how and when this bias emerges during human ontogenesis is still unclear.
In their article, they managed to predict the handedness of fetuses younger than 18 gestational weeks (= weeks since the last menstruation of the mother) with high accuracy.
Disclaimer: I’m not familiar with handedness research at all. I just did a quick search with Google out of curiosity.
I know it’s a scientific faux pas to say this, but perhaps people tend to be attached to their handedness when they get reborn?
Nobody has mentioned the Latin: sinister (manus) = left(-handed)?
Apparently a lot of it is genetic. I’m right-handed but left-footed, which is known as “cross-dominant”. I always knew I was special.
Doesn’t manus just mean “hand”? Sinister is the word for “left-handed”, presumably because left-handedness is unusual and considered a bit “suspect”?
This is my friend’s opinion.
About Pradaksina / Padakkhina:
Brahma religion, pre veda and post veda (also zoroaster), Aditya / surya / sun are highly respected for things that are free from all deception and falsehood, blameless, perfect, in that religion, the sun or group of sun is the object of puja.
the Buddha’s greeting to Bimbisara: The straight direction there is a province, Raja (ujuṃ janapado rāja) looks at the Himalayas (Himavantassa passato); with wealth and strength (Dhanaviriyena sampanno), related to Kosala (Kosalesu niketino). The sun of his ancestor’s name (icdiccā nāma gottena), Sakya his tribal name (Sākiyā nāma jātiyā) [SnP 3.1]
Therefore, the Buddha was also called Adiccabandhu (Sun relative / relative) [SnP 3.6, 5.18; SN 8.1, 11; AN 8.29, etc.]
The meaning of Dakkhiṇa = right, South; Vāma = left.
To reach the south, the body faces the sun and then turns to the right. This means that the first wind direction known to man is eastward.
So the reason for the initial pa-dakkhina is due respect to the sun and incidentally also the gautama siddhata ancestor is adicca / sun.
It is done by circling the object / heading right / south, facing the sun then right / South. This is done by those who understand the meaning of a noble, for example by: Raja Pasenadi, Kosala (Dhammapada Chapter 13.6).
Approximately that means and the reason is to the right.
I always thought that the wearing of the robes to keep the right hand free and other forms of respect similar to this was to do with the carrying of weapons. With your right side free and exposed it shows you are not carrying any weapons.
As a lefty robe wearer I’ve had to learn to eat and serve my food right handed because trying to keep my robe on while using my left hand actively is near impossible
What are the rules on how to wear a robe?
Is there a different way to wear a robe that would free both hands?
It’s just that moving around the left arm causes it to slide off. Doesn’t matter if it’s worn ‘Sri Lankan style’ or ‘Thai style (rolled)’
In Tibet, Buddhists always go clockwise for rounding pagodas, sacred mountains, Buddhist statues and prayer wheels. The anticlockwise is for Bonism.
Have you considered making up a new style that free both hands? Or switching sides to free the left hand? I mean, you’d stand out but whatever.