Front Page Titles (by Subject) THIRD PRAPĀṬHAKA - The Thirteen Principal Upanishads
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THIRD PRAPĀṬHAKA - Misc (Upanishads), The Thirteen Principal Upanishads 
The Thirteen Principal Upanishads, translated from the Sanskrit with an outline of the philosophy of the Upanishads and an annotated bibliography, by Robert Ernest Hume (Oxford University Press, 1921).
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The great Soul, and the individual, suffering, transmigrating soul
1. Then they said: “Sir, if thus you describe the greatness of this Soul (Ātman), there is still another, different one. Who is he, called soul (ātman), who, being overcome by the bright or the dark fruits of action (karman), enters a good or an evil womb, so that his course is downward or upward and he wanders around, overcome by the pairs of opposites (dvandva)?”
The soul that is subject to elements and qualities, confused and self-conceited, suffers and transmigrates
2. [Then he said:] “There is indeed another, different soul, called ‘the elemental soul’ (bhūtātman)—he who, being overcome by the bright or the dark fruits of action, enters a good or an evil womb, so that his course is downward or upward and he wanders around, overcome by the pairs of opposites.
The further explanation of this is:—
The five subtile substances (tan-mātra)1 are spoken of by the word ‘element’ (bhūta). Likewise, the five gross elements (mahā-bhūta) are spoken of by the word ‘element.’ Now, the combination of these is said to be ‘the body’ (śarīra). Now, he, assuredly, indeed, who is said to be in ‘the body’ is said to be ‘the elemental soul.’ Now, its immortal soul (ātman) is like ‘the drop of water on the lotus leaf.’2
This [elemental soul], verily, is overcome by Nature’s (prakṛti) qualities (guṇa).
Now, because of being overcome, he goes on to confusedness; because of confusedness, he sees not the blessed Lord (prabhu), the causer of action, who stands within oneself (ātma-stha). Borne along and defiled by the stream of Qualities (guṇa), unsteady, wavering, bewildered, full of desire, distracted, this one goes on to the state of self-conceit (abhimānatva). In thinking ‘This is I’ and ‘That is mine,’ he binds himself with his self, as does a bird with a snare.
Consequently (anu) ‘being overcome by the fruits of his action, he enters a good or an evil womb, so that his course is downward or upward and he wanders around, overcome by the pairs of opposites.’ ”
“Which one is this?”
Then he said to them:—
The inner Person remains unaffected in the elemental soul’s transformations
3. “Now, it has elsewhere been said3 : ‘Verily, he who is the doer is the elemental soul. The causer of action through the organs is the inner Person. Now, verily, as a lump of iron, overcome by fire and beaten by workmen, passes over into a different form—so, assuredly, indeed, the elemental soul, overcome by the inner Person and beaten by Qualities, passes over into a different form. The mode of that different form, verily, has a fourfold covering,1 is fourteenfold,2 is transformed in eighty-four3 different ways, is a host of beings. These varieties, verily, are driven by the Person, like “the wheel by the potter.” Now, as, when a lump of iron is being hammered, the fire [in it] is not overcome, so that Person is not overcome. This elemental soul (bhūtātman) is overcome (abhibhūta) because of its attachment [to Qualities].’
The body a loathsome conglomerate
4. Now, it has elsewhere been said: ‘This body arises from sexual intercourse. It passes to development in hell[-darkness] (niraya).4 Then it comes forth through the urinary opening. It is built up with bones; smeared over with flesh; covered with skin; filled full with feces, urine, bile, phlegm, marrow, fat, grease, and also with many diseases, like a treasure-house with wealth.’
The overcoming and transforming effects of the dark and of the passionate qualities
5. Now, it has elsewhere been said: ‘The characteristics of the Dark Quality (tamas) are delusion, fear, despondency, sleepiness, weariness, heedlessness, old age, sorrow, hunger, thirst, wretchedness, anger, atheism (nāstikya), ignorance, jealousy, cruelty, stupidity, shamelessness, religious neglect, pride, unequableness.
The characteristics of the Passionate Quality (rajas), on the other hand, are inner thirst, affection, emotion, covetousness, maliciousness, lust, hatred, secretiveness, envy, insatiability, unsteadfastness, fickleness, distractedness, ambitiousness, acquisitiveness, favoritism towards friends, dependence upon surroundings, hatred in regard to unpleasant objects of sense, overfondness in regard to pleasant objects, sourness of utterance, gluttonousness. With these this elemental soul (bhūtātman) is filled full; with these it is “overcome” (abhibhūta). Therefore it undergoes different forms—yea, it undergoes different forms!’ ”
[1 ]This is probably the earliest occurrence of the word in Sanskrit literature. For an exposition of the doctrine, consult Garbe’s Die Samkhya-Philosophie, pp. 236-239.
[2 ]That is, it is unaffected; for the simile see Chānd. 4. 14. 3.
[3 ]So again in Mānava Dharma Śāstra 12. 12.
[1 ]Referring either, as in 6. 28 and again in 6. 38, to the doctrine of the four sheaths (kośa), namely food, breath, mind, and knowledge (the same characteristics of four different selves are mentioned in Tait. 2. 1-4), or, according to the Scholiast, to the four forms of animal life, characterized as born alive, born from an egg, born from moisture, born from a germ (Ait. 5. 3).
[2 ]Referring to the fourteen classes of beings, Sānkhya-Kārikā 53, or to the fourteen worlds of the Vedāntasāra 129—so Deussen interprets.
[3 ]Meaning probably merely ‘very many.’
[4 ]That is, in the womb.