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Misc (Upanishads), The Thirteen Principal Upanishads [1921]

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Misc (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). http://oll.libertyfund.org/titles/2058

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These are commentaries on the Hindu sacred texts known as the Vedas.

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Table of Contents:

Edition: current; Page: [i]
THE THIRTEEN PRINCIPAL UPANISHADS translated from the sanskrit
Edition: current; Page: [ii]

PRINTED IN ENGLAND

AT THE OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

BY FREDERICK HALL

Edition: current; Page: [iii]
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, M.A., Ph.D. professor of the history of religions in union theological seminary, new york
HUMPHREY MILFORD OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS
LONDON EDINBURGH GLASGOW NEW YORK TORONTO MELBOURNE CAPE TOWN BOMBAY
1921
Edition: current; Page: [iv] Edition: current; Page: [v]

to my cousin

JANE PORTER WILLIAMS

IN LOVE AND GRATITUDE

Edition: current; Page: [vi]
  • The One who, himself without color, by the manifold application of his power
  • Distributes many colors in his hidden purpose,
  • And into whom, its end and its beginning, the whole world dissolves—He is God!
  • May He endow us with clear intellect!
  • Śvetāśvatara Upanishad, 4. 1 (p. 402).
Edition: current; Page: [vii]

PREFACE

In the long history of man’s endeavor to grasp the fundamental truths of being, the metaphysical treatises known as the Upanishads1 hold an honored place. They represent the earnest efforts of the profound thinkers of early India to solve the problems of the origin, the nature, and the destiny of man and of the universe, or—more technically—the meaning and value of ‘knowing’ and ‘being.’ Though they contain some fanciful ideas, naive speculations, and inadequate conclusions, yet they are replete with sublime conceptions and with intuitions of universal truth.2

Here are found intimations of the inadequacy of mere nature-worship and of the falsity of an empty ceremonialism. Here are expressed the momentous discoveries that the various gods of polytheistic belief are but numerous special manifestations of the One Power of the universe, and that the supreme object of worship is this variously revealed, partially elusive, all-comprehending unitary Reality. Still more momentous are the discernments that man is of more significance than all the forces of Nature; that man himself is the interpretation as well as the interpreter of Nature, because he is akin to the reality at the heart of the universe; indeed, that the One God, the great intelligent Person who is immanent in the universe, is to be found most directly in the heart of man. Here in the Upanishads are set forth, in concrete example as well as in dogmatic instruction, two opposing theories of life: an ignorant, narrow, selfish way of life which seeks temporary, unsatisfying, unreal ends; and a way of life which seeks to relate itself to the Supreme Reality of the universe, so as to escape from the needless misery of ordinary existence into undying bliss.

These important texts, the earliest of which can hardly Edition: current; Page: [viii] have taken form later than the seventh century bc,1 are surely finding, and will continue to find, more than a limited circle of readers. The student of the history of philosophy who desires to know the answers reached in India for the ever insistent problems of man and the universe and the ideals of the highest existence; the special student of India who strives to understand the essence as well as the externals of its culture; the religious teacher and worker in East and West who seeks to apprehend the aspirations and spiritual ideals of the Hindu soul; the educated English-speaking Hindu who feels a special affection for, and interest in, the sacred writings of his native land; and the deep thinker who searches in arcane doctrine for a clue to the solution of life’s mysteries—all of these will turn constantly to the Upanishads as an authoritative compendium of Indian metaphysical speculation. To meet the need of these varying types of readers for a faithful rendering of the original text—an English version that will enable them to know exactly what the revered Upanishads say—has been my constant aim in the preparation of this work.

It is hardly necessary to dwell here on the difficulties and perplexities that confront anyone engaged on such a task; texts such as these are among the hardest to present adequately in another language, and a completely satisfying translation is wellnigh unattainable. I trust that I have succeeded at least in being literal without becoming cryptic, and in attaining clearness without exegetical accretions. Further remarks on the plan and arrangement of the translation will be found on subsequent pages (pp. xii-xiv), which those making use of this book are requested to consult.

In publishing this new version I would first pay due respect to Professor F. Max Müller, that eminent figure of the past generation of Sanskrit scholars, who, in volumes I and XV of the Sacred Books of the East (1879, 1884), published an English translation of twelve of the thirteen Upanishads here presented. For comment on that translation the reader is Edition: current; Page: [ix] referred to the Bibliography, p. 462 below. In the present status of Sanskrit scholarship, as well as of comparative religion and comparative philosophy, it is no unappreciative aspersion to assert that the same work can be done better now than it was done nearly forty years ago. Indeed, Max Müller himself predicted such improvement.1

Among previous translators my indebtedness is greatest to the late Professor Paul Deussen, of the University of Kiel. No Western scholar of his time has made a more thorough study of the Upanishads, both in themselves and in their relation to the wide field of Sanskrit literature. As a philosophical interpreter as well as an exact translator of the Upanishads, Deussen has no equal. I most gladly and gratefully acknowledge the help derived from constant reference to his German translation, Sechzig Upanishad’s des Veda,2 as well as the stimulus of personal association with him, many years ago, at his home in Kiel.

It is a pleasure to express here the debt of gratitude that I owe to Professor E. Washburn Hopkins, of Yale University. Under his supervision the introductory essay and part of the translation originally took form, and he has since been good enough to revise the entire work in manuscript. His instruction and encouragement have been of the greatest assistance in the preparation of this volume, and many a passage has been clarified as a result of his helpful comments and constructive suggestions.

This volume has also had the benefit of the scholarship and technical skill of my friend George C. O. Haas, A.M., Ph.D., for some years an editor of the Journal of the American Oriental Society and at present holding an administrative post under the United States Government. He not only revised the entire manuscript before it went to press, solving problems of typographical detail and securing consistency throughout Edition: current; Page: [x] the different parts of the entire work, but also undertook the laborious task of seeing the book through the press. For this generous assistance extending over a long series of years I feel deeply and sincerely grateful.

For assistance in connection with the compilation of the Bibliography thanks are due to James Southgate, Esq., who, as a member of the Department of Oriental Books and Manuscripts of the British Museum, revised and amplified the collection of titles which I had myself gathered during the progress of the work.

A word must be said also in appreciation of the unfailing courtesy and helpfulness of the Oxford University Press, whose patience during the long course of putting the work through the press, even amid the trials and difficulties of recent years, deserves hearty recognition.

In conclusion I would add a reverent salutation to India, my native land, mother of more religions than have originated or flourished in any other country of the world. In the early years of childhood and later in the first period of adult service, it was the chief vernacular of the Bombay Presidency which furnished a medium, along with the English language, for intercourse with the wistful people of India, among whom are still many of my dearest friends. It has been a satisfaction that some part of the preparation of this book, begun in the West, could be carried on in the land that gave these Upanishads to the world. Many of the MS. pages have been worked over in conjunction with native scholars in Calcutta and Bombay, and I wish to acknowledge especially the patient counsels of Mahâmahopâdhyâya Hara Prasâd Shâstri and some of his group of pandits.

May this translation, with its introductory survey of the philosophy of the Upanishads, prove a means of bringing about a wider knowledge of the contents of these venerated texts and a discriminating appreciation of their teachings!

Robert Ernest Hume.
Union Theological Seminary,
New York.
Edition: current; Page: [xi]

CONTENTS

  • Preface . . . . . . . . page vii
  • Remarks concerning the Translation: its Method and Arrangement . . . xii
  • List of Abbreviations . . . . . xv
  • An Outline of the Philosophy of the Upanishads . . . . . . . 1
  • Bṛihad-Āraṇyaka Upanishad . . . . 73
  • Chāndogya Upanishad . . . . . 177
  • Taittirīya Upanishad . . . . . 275
  • Aitareya Upanishad . . . . . 294
  • Kaushītaki Upanishad . . . . . 302
  • Kena Upanishad . . . . . . 335
  • Kaṭha Upanishad . . . . . . 341
  • Īśā Upanishad . . . . . . . 362
  • Muṇḍaka Upanishad . . . . . . 366
  • Praśna Upanishad . . . . . . 378
  • Māṇḍūkya Upanishad . . . . . 391
  • Śvetāśvatara Upanishad . . . . . 394
  • Maitri Upanishad . . . . . . 412
  • A Bibliography of the Upanishads, Selected, Classified, and Annotated . 459
  • Sanskrit Index . . . . . . . 509
  • General Index . . . . . . . 514
Edition: current; Page: [xii]

REMARKS CONCERNING THE TRANSLATION ITS METHOD AND ARRANGEMENT

Principles observed in the translation

It has been the aim of the translator to prepare a rendering that represents, as faithfully as possible, the form and meaning of the Sanskrit text. A literal equivalent, even though lacking in fluency or grace of expression, has been preferred throughout to a fine phrase that less exactly reproduces the original. The version has been made in accordance with philological principles, with constant and comprehensive comparison of recurrent words and phrases, and due attention has been paid to the native commentaries as well as to the work of previous scholars in East and West.

The text on which it is based

The text of the Upanishads here translated may be said to be in fairly good condition, and the readings of the printed editions could in the main be followed. Occasional adoption of variants or conjectural emendations is mentioned and explained in the footnotes (as on pp. 207, 226, 455). In the Bṛihad-Āraṇyaka Upanishad the text of the Kāṇva recension has been used as the basis; some of the variations of the Mādhyaṁdina recension are noted at the foot of the page. In the Kaushītaki Upanishad the principal divergencies between the Bibliotheca Indica edition and that in the Ānandāśrama Series are set forth in the notes.

Order of the Upanishads in this volume

The traditional sequence of the ten principal Upanishads is that given in the following useful versus memorialis:

  • īśā-kena-katha-praśna-muṇḍa-māṇḍūkya-tittiri
  • aitareyaṁ ca chāndogyaṁ bṛhadāraṇyakaṁ tathā.1

In the present volume, which adds the Maitri Upanishad to the usual group of twelve, they are arranged in the probable order of their original composition. Though the determination of this order is Edition: current; Page: [xiii] difficult and at best conjectural, yet a careful study of the style and contents of these texts points to a relative sequence nearly like that first formulated by Deussen.1 The only departure in this volume from Deussen’s order consists in placing the Śvetāśvatara in the later group with the Maitri, rather than in the earlier group before the Muṇḍaka.2

Treatment of metrical portions

Metrical portions of the text are indicated by the use of type of a smaller size and by an arrangement that suggests verse form to the eye. The meter of each stanza is shown by the width of the margin: a margin of moderate width denotes the 11-syllable triṣtubh, whereas a wider margin denotes the familiar śloka, or 8-syllable anuṣtubh. The number of lines accords with the number of verses in the original, and wherever possible the translation follows the text line for line. It has frequently been possible to attain in English the same number of syllables as in the Sanskrit, though no attempt has been made to produce a consistently metrical translation to the detriment of the sense.

Additions in square brackets

Matter in square brackets is matter not actually expressed in the words of the Sanskrit text. It comprises—

  • (a) the English equivalent of a word or words omitted or to be understood in the Sanskrit (as at Ait. 4. 6, p. 300; Kaṭha 4. 3, p. 354);
  • (b) words added to complete or improve the English grammatical structure (as at Chānd. 5. 3. 3, p. 230);
  • (c) explanations added by the translator to make clear the import of the passage (as at Praśna 5. 3-5, p. 388; Maitri 6. 14, p. 433).

Additions in parentheses

Matter in parentheses is always identical in meaning with the preceding word or words. It comprises—

  • (a) translations or equivalents of proper names or other designations, as: ‘the Golden Germ (Hiraṇyagarbha)’;
  • (b) Sanskrit words in italics, immediately after their English translation as: ‘peace (śānti).’
Edition: current; Page: [xiv]

Use of italics

Sanskrit words have been quoted freely in italics enclosed in parentheses—

  • (a) to aid the special student in his search for the exact shade of meaning by giving the original of which the word or phrase immediately preceding is a translation;
  • (b) to render evident to the eye the play on words or the etymological explanation that frequently occurs in the exposition or argumentation of the Upanishads (cf. Chānd. 1. 2. 10-12, p. 179).

Nouns and adjectives are usually given in their uninflected stemform; occasionally, however, an inflected form is used for the sake of clearness (as at Chānd. 8. 3. 3, p. 265).

Transliteration of Sanskrit words

The transliteration of Sanskrit words in italics follows the current usage of Western Oriental scholars (except that anusvāra is represented by instead of by the customary ). In roman type, as part of the English translation, however, proper names (as of divinities, persons, texts, and ceremonies) are given in a slightly less technical transliteration, with some concession to popular usage; the vowel is represented by ‘ṛi’ (except in ‘Rig,’ ‘Rig-Veda’), and the sibilant by ‘sh.’

Headings in heavy-faced type

The headings in heavy-faced type have been inserted by the translator to summarize the contents of the ensuing sections and to interpret, as far as possible in a few words, the development of thought in the text.

Edition: current; Page: [xv]

LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS

A the recension of Kaush. published in the Ānandāśrama Sanskrit Series.
Ait. Aitareya Upanishad.
Ait. Br. Aitareya Brāhmaṇa.
AJP. American Journal of Philology.
Āśv. Āśvalāyana (Gṛihya Sūtra).
AV. Atharva-Veda.
AVTr. Atharva-Veda Translation, by Whitney and Lanman, in the Harvard Oriental Series, vols. 7 and 8, Cambridge, Mass., 1905.
B the recension of Kaush. published in the Bibliotheca Indica.
BhG. Bhagavad-Gītā.
BR. Bohtlingk and Roth’s great Sanskrit Dictionary, 7 vols., St. Petersburg, 1855-1875.
Bṛih. Bṛihad-Āraṇyaka Upanishad.
BWb. Bohtlingk’s shorter Sanskrit Dictionary, 7 parts, St. Petersburg, 1879-1889.
Chānd. Chāndogya Upanishad.
com. commentator, commentators.
ed. edited, edition.
JAOS. Journal of the American Oriental Society.
K Kāṇva recension of Bṛih.
Kaush. Kaushītaki Upanishad.
l.c. (loco citato), at the place cited.
M Mādhyaṁdina recension of Bṛih.
MBh. Mahābhārata.
Mahānār. Mahānārāyaṇa Upanishad.
Māṇḍ. Māṇḍūkya Upanishad.
MS. Maitrāyaṇi Saṁhitā.
Muṇḍ. Muṇḍaka Upanishad.
MW. Monier-Williams’s Sanskrit Dictionary, 2d edition, Oxford, 1899.
Pār. Pāraskara (Gṛihya Sūtra).
RV. Rig-Veda.
Śat. Br. Śatapatha Brāhmaṇa.
SBE. Sacred Books of the East.
SV. Sāma-Veda.
s.v. (sub verbo), under the word.
Śvet. Śvetāśvatara Upanishad.
TA. Taittirīya Āraṇyaka.
Tait. Taittirīya Upanishad.
tr. translated, translation.
TS. Taittirīya Saṁhitā.
VS. Vājasaneyi Saṁhitā.

ERRATA

Page 48, line 2 for Madhyaṁdina read Mādhyaṁdina
Page 48, line 3 for Kaṇva read Kāṇva
Page 143, line 26 for this home read this world
Page 172, line 6 for Tvashtṛi read Tvashṭṛi
Page 175, line 26 for yajur read yajus
Page 320, line 26 and note 4 for Tvashtṛi read Tvashṭṛi
Edition: current; Page: [1]

AN OUTLINE OF THE PHILOSOPHY OF THE UPANISHADS

CHAPTER I: THE PLACE OF THE UPANISHADS IN THE HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY

Almost contemporaneous with that remarkable period of active philosophic and religious thought the world over, about the sixth century bc, when Pythagoras, Confucius, Buddha, and Zoroaster were thinking out new philosophies and inaugurating great religions, there was taking place, in the land of India, a quiet movement which has exercised a continuous influence upon the entire subsequent philosophic thought of that country and which has also been making itself felt in the West.

The Aryan invaders of Hindustan, after having conquered the territory and gained an undisputed foothold, betook themselves to the consideration of those mighty problems which thrust themselves upon every serious, thoughtful person—the problems of the meaning of life and the world and the great unseen powers. They cast about on this side and on that for explanation. Thus we find, for example, in the Śvetāśvatara Upanishad (1. 1):—

  • ‘What is the cause? Brahma? Whence are we born?
  • Whereby do we live? And on what are we established?
  • Overruled by whom, in pains and pleasures,
  • Do we live our various conditions, O ye theologians?’

In childlike manner, like the early Greek cosmologists, they accepted now one thing and now another as the primary material out of which the whole world is made. Yet, again like the early Greek philosophers and also with the subtlety and directness of childlike insight, they discerned the underlying unity of all being. Out of this penetrating intuition those early Indian thinkers elaborated a system of pantheism which has proved most fascinating to their descendants. If there is Edition: current; Page: [2] any one intellectual tenet which, explicitly or implicitly, is held by the people of India, furnishing a fundamental presupposition of all their thinking, it is this doctrine of pantheism.

The beginnings of this all-pervading form of theorizing are recorded in the Upanishads. In these ancient documents are found the earliest serious attempts at construing the world of experience as a rational whole. Furthermore, they have continued to be the generally accepted authoritative statements with which every subsequent orthodox philosophic formulation has had to show itself in accord, or at least not in discord. Even the materialistic Cārvākas, who denied the Vedas, a future life, and almost every sacred doctrine of the orthodox Brahmans, avowed respect for these Upanishads. That interesting later epitome of the Vedānta, the Vedānta-sāra,1 shows how these Cārvākas and the adherents of the Buddhistic theory and also of the ritualistic Pūrva-mīmāṁsā and of the logical Nyāya appealed to the Upanishads in support of their varying theories. Even the dualistic Sāṅkhya philosophers claimed to find scripture authority in the Upanishads.2 For the orthodox Vedānta, of course, the Upanishads, with Bādarāyana’s Vedānta-Sūtras and Śaṅkara’s Commentary on them, have been the very text-books.

Not only have they been thus of historical importance in the past development of philosophy in India, but they are of present-day influence. ‘To every Indian Brahman today the Upanishads are what the New Testament is to the Christian.’3 Max Muller calls attention to the fact that there are more new editions published of the Upanishads and Śaṅkara in India than of Descartes and Spinoza in Europe.4 Especially now, in the admitted inadequacy of the existing degraded form of popular Hinduism, the educated Hindus are turning to their old Scriptures and are finding there much which they confidently Edition: current; Page: [3] stake against the claims of superiority of any foreign religion or philosophy. It is noteworthy that the significant movement indicated by the reforming and theistic Samājas of modern times was inaugurated by one who was the first to prepare an English translation of the Upanishads. Rammohun Roy expected to restore Hinduism to its pristine purity and superiority through a resuscitation of Upanishadic philosophy with an infusion of certain eclectic elements.

They are also being taken up and exploited by a certain class who have found a rich reward and an attractive field of operation in the mysticism and credulity of India. Having hopes for ‘the Upanishads as a world-scripture, that is to say, a scripture appealing to the lovers of religion and truth in all races and at all times, without distinction,’ theosophists have been endeavoring to make them available for their converts.1

Not only have the Upanishads thus furnished the regnant philosophy for India from their date up to the present time and proved fascinating to mystics outside of India, but their philosophy presents many interesting parallels and contrasts to the elaborate philosophizings of Western lands. And Western professional students of philosophy, as well as literary historians, have felt and expressed the importance of the Upanishads. In the case of Arthur Schopenhauer, the chief of modern pantheists of the West, his philosophy is unmistakably transfused with the doctrines expounded in the Upanishads, a fact that might be surmised from his oft-quoted eulogy: ‘It [i. e. Anquetil du Perron’s Latin translation of a Persian rendering of the Upanishads] is the most rewarding and the most elevating reading which (with the exception of the original text) there can possibly be in the world. It has been the solace of my life and will be of my death.’2

Professor Deussen, the Professor of Philosophy in the University of Kiel (Germany), has always regarded his thorough study of the Vedānta philosophy as a reward in Edition: current; Page: [4] itself, apart from the satisfaction of contributing so largely to our understanding of its teachings. For in the Upanishads he has found Parmenides, Plato, and Kant in a nutshell, and on leaving India in 1893, in an address before the Bombay Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society,1 he gave it as his parting advice that ‘the Vedānta, in its unfalsified form is the strongest support of pure morality, is the greatest consolation in the sufferings of life and death. Indians, keep to it!’

Professor Royce of Harvard University deemed the philosophy of the Upanishads sufficiently important to expound it in his Gifford Lectures,2 before the University of Aberdeen, and to introduce some original translations especially made by his colleague Professor Lanman.

So, in East and West, the Upanishads have made and will make their influence felt. A broad survey of the facts will hardly sustain the final opinion expressed by Regnaud: ‘Arbitrary or legendary doctrines, that is to say, those which have sprung from individual or popular imagination, such as the Upanishads, resemble a gallery of portraits whose originals have long since been dead. They have no more than a historical and comparative value, the principal interest of which is for supplying important elements for the study of the human mind.’3

Historical and comparative value the Upanishads undoubtedly have, but they are also of great present-day importance. No one can thoroughly understand the workings and conclusions of the mind of an educated Hindu of today who does not know something of the fountain from which his ancestors for centuries past have drunk, and from which he too has been deriving his intellectual life. The imagery under which his philosophy is conceived, the phraseology in which it is couched, and the analogies by which it is supported are largely the same in the discussions of today as are found in the Upanishads and in Śaṅkara’s commentaries on them and on the Sūtras. Furthermore, although some elements are evidently of local interest Edition: current; Page: [5] and of past value, it is evident that the pantheism of the Upanishads has exerted and will continue to exert an influence on the pantheism of the West, for it contains certain elements which penetrate deeply into the truths which every philosopher must reach in a thoroughly grounded explanation of experience.

The intelligent and sympathetic discrimination of these elements will constitute a philosophic work of the first importance. As a preliminary step to that end, the mass of unorganized material contained in the Upanishads has been culled and the salient ideas here arranged in the following outline.

CHAPTER II: THE UPANISHADS AND THEIR PLACE IN INDIAN PHILOSOPHY

The Upanishads are religious and philosophical treatises, forming part of the early Indian Vedas.1 The preceding portions are the Mantras, or Hymns to the Vedic gods, and the Brāhmaṇas, or directories on and explanations of the sacrificial ritual. Accordingly these three divisions of the Śruti, or ‘Revelation,’ may be roughly characterized as the utterances successively of poet, priest, and philosopher. The distinction, of course, is not strictly exclusive; for the Upanishads, being integral parts of the Brāhmaṇas,2 are continuations of the sacrificial rules and discussions, but they pass over into philosophical considerations. Much that is in the Upanishads, particularly in the Bṛihad-Āraṇyaka and in the Chāndogya, might more properly be included in the Brāhmaṇa portion, and some that is in the Brāhmaṇas is Upanishadic in character. The two groups are closely interwoven.

Edition: current; Page: [6]

This fact, along with the general lack of data in Sanskrit literature for chronological orientation, makes it impossible to fix any definite dates for the Upanishads. The Śatapatha Brāhmaṇa, of which the Bṛihad-Āraṇyaka Upanishad forms the conclusion, is believed to contain material that comes down to 300 bc The Upanishads themselves contain several references to writings which undoubtedly are much later than the beginnings of the Upanishads. The best that can be done is to base conjectures upon the general aspect of the contents compared with what may be supposed to precede and to succeed. The usual date that is thus assigned to the Upanishads is about 600 or 500 bc, just prior to the Buddhist revival.

Yet evidences of Buddhist influences are not wanting in them. In Bṛih. 3. 2. 13 it is stated that after death the different parts of a person return to the different parts of Nature from whence they came, that even his soul (ātman) goes into space and that only his karma, or effect of work, remains over. This is out and out the Buddhist doctrine. Connections in the point of dialect may also be shown. Sarvāvat is ‘a word which as yet has not been discovered in the whole range of Sanskrit literature, except in Śatapatha Brāhmaṇa 14. 7. 1. 10 [= Bṛih. 4. 3. 9] and in Northern Buddhist writings.’1 Its Pāli equivalent is sabbāvā. In Bṛih. 4. 3. 2-6 r is changed to l, i. e. paly-ayate for pary-ayate—a change which is regularly made in the Pāli dialect in which the books of Southern Buddhism are written. It may be that this is not a direct influence of the Pāli upon the Sanskrit, but at least it is the same tendency which exhibits itself in Pāli, and here the two languages are close enough together to warrant the assumption of contact and mutual influence. Somewhat surer evidence, however, is the use of the second person plural ending tha for ta. Müller pointed out in connection with the word ācaratha (Muṇḍ. 1. 2. 1) that this irregularity looks suspiciously Buddhistic. There are however, four other similar instances. The word samvatsyatha (Praśna 1. 2) might be explained as a future indicative (not an imperative), serving as a mild future imperative. But pṛcchatha (Praśna 1. 2), āpadyatha (Praśna 2. 3), and jānatha and vimuñcatha (Muṇḍ. 2. 2. 5) are evidently meant Edition: current; Page: [7] as imperatives, and as such are formed with the Pāli instead of with the regular Sanskrit ending. It has long been suspected that the later Śiva sects, which recognized the Atharva-Veda as their chief scripture, were closely connected with the Buddhistic sects. Perhaps in this way the Buddhistic influence1 was transmitted to the Praśna and Muṇḍaka Upanishads of the Atharva-Veda.

This shows that the Upanishads are not unaffected by outside influences. Even irrespective of these, their inner structure reveals that they are heterogeneous in their material and compound in their composition. The Bṛihad-Āraṇyaka, for instance, is composed of three divisions, each of which is concluded, as if it were a complete whole, by a vaṁśa, or genealogy of the doctrine (that is, a list of teachers through whom the doctrine there taught had originally been received from Brahma and handed down to the time of writing). The first section, entitled ‘The Honey Section,’ contains a dialogue between Yājñavalkya and Maitreyī which is almost verbally repeated in the second section, called ‘The Yājñavalkya Section.’ It seems quite evident that these two pieces could not have been parts of one continuous writing, but that they were parts of two separate works which were mechanically united and then connected with the third section, whose title, ‘Supplementary Section,’ is in accord with the heterogeneous nature of its contents.

Both the Bṛihad-Āraṇyaka and the Chāndogya are very composite in character. Disconnected explanations of the sacrificial ritual, legends, dialogues, etymologizings (which now appear absurd, but which originally were regarded as important explanations),2 sayings, philosophical disquisitions, and so forth are, in the main, merely mechanically juxtaposed. In the shorter and later Upanishads there is not room for such a collection; but in them, more and more, quotations from the earlier Upanishads and from the Vedas are inserted. Many of these can be recognized as such. There are also certain passages, especially in the Kaṭha and Śvetāśvatara, which, Edition: current; Page: [8] though not referable, are evidently quotations, since they are not grammatically construable in the sentence, but contain a thought which seems to be commented upon in the words immediately following.

Not only are the Upanishads thus heterogeneous in point of structure, but they also contain passages which set forth the dualistic Sāṅkhya philosophy, which has been the chief antagonist of the monistic Vedānta. Of the earlier Upanishads the Chāndogya, in 6. 4, explains all existing objects as a composition of three elements, a reduction which has an analogue in the Sānkhya with its three qualities. In Kaṭha 4. 7, the prakṛti or ‘Nature’ of the Sāṅkhya is described. In Kaṭha 3. 10-13, and similarly in 6. 7-8, there is a gradation of psychical principles in the order of their emanation from the Unmanifest (avyakta) which agrees closely with the Sāṅkhya order; but a difference is added when that Unmanifest instead of being left as the ultimate, is subordinated to the Person of the world-ground. Somewhat similar are the genealogies of Muṇḍ. 1. 1. 8; 2. 1. 3; and Praśna 6. 4. In Praśna 4. 8 is a combined Sāṅkhya and Vedānta list, the major part of which, up to citta, ‘thought and what can be thought,’ is Sāṅkhyan. The term buddhi, ‘intellect,’ is an important Sāṅkhyan word. It is noticeable that it does not occur until the Kaṭha, where other Sāṅkhyan similarities are first prominent and where this word is found four times.

In the Śvetāśvatara the Sāṅkhya is mentioned by name in the last chapter, and the statement is made that it reasons in search of the same object as is there being expounded. The references in this Upanishad to the Sāṅkhya are unmistakable. The enumerations of 1. 4-5 are distinctly non-Vedāntic and quite Sāṅkhyan. The passage at 6. 1, where svabhāva, ‘the nature of things,’ evidently means prakṛti, the ‘Nature’ of the Sāṅkhya, denounces that theory as the utterance of deluded men. Similarly 1. 3 contradicts the Sāṅkhyan doctrine in placing the guṇas, or ‘qualities,’ in God and in attributing to him ‘self-power.’ But more numerous are the instances where the Vedānta theory is interpreted in Sāṅkhyan terms, as in 4. 10, where the prakṛti of the Sāṅkhya is identified with the māyā of the Vedānta. The passage 4. 5, where the explanation Edition: current; Page: [9] of experience is sensually analogized, is thoroughly Sāṅkhyan. The relation of the Vedānta to the Sāṅkhya has not yet been satisfactorily made out. Perhaps, as Professor Cowell maintained,1 ‘the Śvetāśvatara Upanishad is the most direct attempt to reconcile the Sāṅkhya and the Vedānta.’ The Maitri is even more evidently pervaded by Sāṅkhyan influences, especially the explicit references to the guṇas, or ‘qualities,’ with the enumeration of their effects (3. 5) and the explanation of their origin (5. 2).

Even with due allowance made for a supposititious period when the terms of philosophy may have existed without distinction of systems, such as are known afterwards as Vedānta and Sāṅkhya, it is nevertheless improbable that so complete a Sāṅkhyan vocabulary as meets us in the Śvetāśvatara and the Maitri Upanishads could belong to such a period. They seem rather to belong to a period when systems were not only recognized as such, but as antagonistic.

These remarks have made it clear that the Upanishads are no homogeneous products, cogently presenting a philosophic theory, but that they are compilations from different sources recording the ‘guesses at truth’ of the early Indians. A single, well articulated system cannot be deduced from them; but underlying all their expatiations, contradictions, and unordered matter there is a general basis of a developing pantheism which will now be placed in exposition.

CHAPTER III: FIRST ATTEMPTS AT THE CONCEPTION OF A UNITARY WORLD-GROUND

Among the early Indians, as among the early Greeks, an explanation of the beginnings of the world, its original substance, and its construction, formed the first and most interesting subject of philosophical speculation. In the Vedas such speculation had gone on to some extent and had produced the Edition: current; Page: [10] famous Creation Hymn, RV. 10. 129, as well as others (such as RV. 10. 121; 10. 81; 10. 72; 10. 90) in which the origin of the world was conjectured under architectural, generative, and sacrificial analogies. In the Brāhmaṇas speculation continued further along the same lines. When the period of the Upanishads arrived, the same theme had not grown old—and when will it? The quotation from Śvet. 1. 1 already cited (page 1) shows how this theme was still discussed and indicates the alternatives that were offered late in the period. But among the early Upanishads these first crude cosmogonic theories had not yet been displaced.

Prominent among these is one which was advanced among the early Greeks by Thales and which was also a widely prevailing Semitic idea, namely, that the original stuff of the world was Water. Thus in Bṛih. 5. 5 we find it stated that ‘in the beginning this world was just Water.’ ‘It is just Water solidified that is this earth, that is the atmosphere, that is the sky, that is gods and men, that is animals and birds, grass and trees, beasts, together with worms, flies, and ants; all these are just Water solidified’ (Chānd. 7. 10. 1). Gārgī in Bṛih. 3. 6. 1 opens a discussion with the philosopher Yājñavalkya by asking for an explanation of the popular theory that ‘all this world is woven, warp and woof, on water.’

In the later Kaṭha a more philosophic theory of the worldground was added on to this older theory that water was the primal entity: ‘[Ātman], who was born of old from the waters’ (4. 6). Somewhat similar combinations of the earlier and later theories are made in Ait. 1. 1. 3, where Ātman, after creating the waters, ‘from the waters drew forth and shaped a person,’ from whose members the different parts of the world and of man emanated; and in Kaush. 1. 7, where Brahma declares ‘the waters, verily, indeed, are my world.’

In a little more philosophic fashion Space also was posited as the ultimate ground of the world. At Chānd. 1. 8-9 three men are represented as having a discussion over the origin (or ‘what it goes to,’ gati) of the Sāman, ‘Chant,’ of the sacrificial ritual. One of the group traced it back to sound, to breath, to food, to water, to yonder world. When pressed as to what ‘yonder world goes back to,’ he replied: ‘One should not lead Edition: current; Page: [11] beyond the heavenly world. We establish the Sāman upon the heavenly world, for the Sāman is praised as heaven.’ The second member of the group taunted the first that his Sāman had no foundation, and when challenged himself to declare the origin of that world, replied ‘this world’; but he was immediately brought to the limit of his knowledge as regards the origin of this world. ‘One should not lead beyond the world-support. We establish the Sāman upon the world as a support, for the Sāman is praised as a support.’ Then the third member put in his taunt: ‘Your Sāman comes to an end,’ said he. It is noticeable that he, who was the only one of the three not a Brahman, or professional philosopher, was able to explain: ‘Verily, all things here arise out of space. They disappear back into space, for space alone is greater than these; space is the final goal.’

With still greater abstraction the origin of the world is traced back, as in the early Greek speculations and as in RV. 10. 72. 2-3 and AV. 17. 1. 19, to Non-being (a-sad).

  • ‘In the beginning, verily, this [world] was non-existent.
  • Therefrom, verily, Being was produced.’
  • (Tait. 2. 7.)

In Chānd. 3. 19 the same theory is combined with another theory, which is found among the Greeks and which was popular among the Indians, continuing even after the time of Manu, namely, that of the cosmic egg. ‘In the beginning this world was merely non-being (a-sad). It was existent. It developed. It turned into an egg. It lay for the period of a year. It was split asunder. One of the two eggshell-parts became silver, one gold. That which was of silver is this earth. That which was of gold is the sky. What was the outer membrane is the mountains. What was the inner membrane is cloud and mist. What were the veins are the rivers. What was the fluid within is the ocean.’

This theory of the Rig-Veda, of the Atharva-Veda, of the Taittirīya, and of the early part of the Chāndogya is expressly referred to and combated at Chānd. 6. 2. ‘In the beginning, my dear, this world was just Being, one only, without a second. To be sure, some people say: “In the beginning this world was just Non-being, one only, without a second; from that Edition: current; Page: [12] Non-being Being was produced.” But verily, my dear, whence could this be? How from Non-being could Being be produced? On the contrary, my dear, in the beginning this world was Being, one only, without a second. It bethought itself: “Would that I were many! Let me procreate myself!” It emitted heat.’ Similarly the heat procreated water, and the water food. Out of these three elements, after they had been infused by the original existent with name and form (i. e. a principle of individuation), all physical objects and also the organic and psychical nature of man were composed.

Still more abstract than the space-theory, but connected with it, is the cosmological speculation offered by Yājñavalkya to Gārgī, who confronted him with two supposedly unanswerable questions. ‘That which is above the sky, that which is beneath the earth, that which is between these two, sky and earth, that which people call the past and the present and the future—across what is that woven, warp and woof?’ ‘Across space,’ was Yājñavalkya’s reply. ‘Across what then, pray, is space woven?’ ‘That, O Gārgī, Brahmans call the Imperishable,’ answers Yājñavalkya, but he does not attempt to describe this, since it is beyond all earthly distinctions. However, with a directness and a grand simplicity that call to mind the Hebrew account of the creation by the mandatory word of the Divine Being, there follows an account of the governances of the world by that world-ground. ‘Verily, O Gārgī, at the command of that Imperishable the sun and moon stand apart. Verily, O Gārgī, at the command of that Imperishable the earth and the sky stand apart. Verily, O Gārgī, at the command of that Imperishable the moments, the hours, the days, the nights, the fortnights, the months, the seasons, and the years stand apart. Verily, O Gārgī, at the command of that Imperishable some rivers flow from the snowy mountains to the east, others to the west, in whatever direction each flows’ (Bṛih. 3. 8. 3-9).

These searchings for the origin and explanation of the world of phenomena, first in a phenomenal entity like water and space, and then in a super-phenomenal entity like non-being, being, or the Imperishable, had even in the Rig- and Atharva-Vedas Edition: current; Page: [13] reached the conception of a necessarily unitary basis of the world and even the beginnings of monism. Thus:—

  • ‘Brahmaṇaspati like a smith
  • Did forge together all things here.’
  • (RV. 10. 72. 2.)

Viśvakarman (literally, the ‘All-maker’), the one God, established all things (RV. 10. 81). From the sacrificial dismemberment of Purusha, the World-Person, all things were formed (RV. 10. 90). Again, in RV. 10. 121. 1:—

  • ‘In the beginning arose Hiraṇyagarbha,
  • The earth’s begetter, who created heaven.’

So also in RV. 10. 129. 1, 2, the Creation Hymn:—

  • ‘There was then neither being nor non-being. . . .
  • Without breath breathed by its own power That One.’

So also RV. 1. 164. 6:—

  • ‘I, unknowing, ignorant, here
  • Ask the wise sages for the sake of knowledge:
  • What was That One, in the form of the unborn,
  • Who established these six worlds?’

A glimpse into monism is seen in RV. 1. 164. 46:—

‘Him who is the One existent, sages name variously.’

Various, indeed, were the conjectures regarding the world-ground. Four—Brahmaṇaspati, Viśvakarman, Purusha, and Hiraṇyagarbha—besides the indefinite That One, have just been cited from the Rig-Veda. Another, Prajāpati (literally ‘Lord of creatures’) began to rise towards the end of the Vedic period, increased in prominence through the Brahmanic, and continued on into the Upanishadic. But the conception which is the ground-work of the Vedānta, which overthrew or absorbed into itself all other conceptions of the world-ground, was that of Brahma. Emerging in the Brāhmaṇas, it obtained in the Upanishads a fundamental position which it never lost. Indeed, the philosophy of the Upanishads is sometimes called Brahma-ism from its central concept.

Edition: current; Page: [14]

CHAPTER IV: THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE CONCEPTION OF BRAHMA

As the early cosmologies started with one thing and another, but always one particular thing, posited as the primal entity, so in Bṛih. 1. 4. 10-11 and again in Maitri 6. 17 we find the statement: ‘Verily, in the beginning this world was Brahma.’ And as in the old cosmologies, especially in the Rig-Veda and in the Brāhmaṇas, so also in the Upanishads procreation was adopted as the specific analogy for world-production. Thus: ‘He desired: “Would that I were many! Let me procreate myself!” He performed austerity. Having performed austerity, he created this whole world, whatever there is here’ (Tait. 2. 6). It should be noticed that consciousness, which was absent in the water- and space-cosmologies, is here posited for the production of the world; also that the creation of the world, as in the Purusha Hymn, RV. 10. 90, and all through the Brāhmaṇas, is an act of religious significance accompanied by ceremonial rites.

This last fact is not unnatural when the situation is considered. Every undertaking of importance had to be preceded by sacrifices and austerities in order to render it auspicious. The greater the importance of the affair, such as beginning a war or going on a journey, the greater was the need of abundant sacrifice. And if sacrifice was so essential and efficacious for human affairs, would it not be equally necessary and efficacious for so enormous an undertaking as the creation of the world?

These considerations probably had the greater weight in view of the meaning and historical importance of the word brahma, which now and henceforth was to be employed as the designation of the world-ground.

In the Rig-Veda brahma seems to have meant first ‘hymn,’ ‘prayer,’ ‘sacred knowledge,’ ‘magic formula.’ In this very sense it is used in the Upanishads, e. g. Tait. 3. 10. 4, as well as in compounds such as brahmavat, ‘possessed of magic formulas,’ and brahma-varcasa, ‘superiority in sacred knowledge.’ It also signified the power that was inherent in the hymns, Edition: current; Page: [15] prayers, sacred formulas, and sacred knowledge. This latter meaning it was that induced the application of the word to the world-ground—a power that created and pervaded and upheld the totality of the universe.

Yet how difficult it was to preserve the penetrating philosophical insight which discerned that efficiency, that power, that brahma underlying the world—an insight which dared to take the word from its religious connection and to infuse into it a philosophical connotation—will be shown in the recorded attempts to grasp that stupendous idea, all of which fell back, because of figurative thinking, into the old cosmologies which this very Brahma-theory itself was intended to transcend.

The unknown character of this newly discovered Being and the idea that only by its will do even the gods perform their functions, is indicated in a legend contained in the Kena Upanishad. Brahma appeared to the gods, but they did not understand who it was. They deputed Agni, the god of fire, to ascertain its identity. He, vaunting of his power to burn, was challenged to burn a straw, but was baffled. Upon his unsuccessful return to the gods, Vāyu, the god of wind, was sent on the same mission. He, boasting of his power to blow anything away, was likewise challenged to blow a straw away and was likewise baffled. To Indra, the next delegate, a beautiful woman, allegorized by the commentator as Wisdom, explained that the incognito was Brahma, through whose power the gods were exalted and enjoyed greatness.

In Bṛih. 3. 9. 1-9 Yājñavalkya was pressed and further pressed by Śākalya to state the real number of the gods. Unwillingly he reduced, in seven steps, the popular number of 3306 gods to one, and that one was Brahma, the only God.

But apart from legend and apart from religion it was difficult for the ordinary person to understand who or what this Brahma was.

Gārgī, one of the two women in the Upanishads who philosophize, takes up the old water-cosmology and asks Yājñavalkya, the most prominent philosopher of the Upanishads (Bṛih. 3. 6): ‘On what, pray, is the water woven, warp and woof?’ He replies, ‘The atmosphere-worlds.’ On being Edition: current; Page: [16] asked again, ‘On what then, pray, are the atmosphere-worlds woven, warp and woof?’ he says, ‘The Gandharva-world [or world of spirits].’ The regressus has been entered, and Yājñavalkya plays somewhat the part of Locke’s ‘poor Indian [i. e. American Indian] philosopher’ with his tortoise, and elephant, and so forth, as the world’s last standing-ground. Here he takes Gārgī back to the worlds of the sun upon which the Gandharva-worlds are woven, and then in turn to the worlds of the moon, the worlds of the stars, the worlds of the gods, the worlds of Indra, the worlds of Prajāpati, the worlds of Brahma. ‘On what then, pray, are the worlds of Brahma woven, warp and woof?’ ‘Gārgī, do not question too much, lest your head fall off. In truth you are questioning too much about a divinity about which further questions cannot be asked. Gārgī, do not over-question.’ Thereupon Gārgī ceased to question.

It is a remnant of the old space-cosmology joined with the Brahma-theory when in Bṛih. 5. 1 it is stated that ‘Brahma is ether—the ether primeval, the ether that blows.’ A little more is added when it is said that ‘Brahma is life. Brahma is joy. Brahma is the void’ (Chānd. 4. 10. 5). The abundance and variousness of being in that world-ground which must also be the ground of the physical and of the mental life of persons is approached in Tait. 3, where the instruction is successively given that Brahma is food, breath, mind, understanding, and bliss, since out of each of those, as from the world-ground, things are born, by those they live, unto those they enter on departing hence.

There are four other passages where attempts are expressly made to define Brahma.

In Bṛih. 2. 1 the renowned Brahman Gārgya Bālāki came to Ajātaśatru, king of Benares, and volunteered to tell him of Brahma. The wealthy king, in emulation of the lavish Janaka, offered a thousand cows for such an exposition. Gārgya explained that he venerated the person in the sun as Brahma. ‘Talk not to me about such a Brahma,’ Ajātaśatru protested. He venerated as Brahma the Supreme Head and King of all beings. Then Gārgya said that he also venerated the person in the moon as Brahma. Ajātaśatru again protested against Edition: current; Page: [17] the inadequacy of such a conception of Brahma. He venerated It as the great white-robed king Soma (i.e. the person vivifying the moon). Again Gārgya gave another definition of Brahma, namely, as the person in the lightning; and again Ajātaśatru condemned his statement as inadequate by declaring that he venerated as Brahma the Brilliant One, the principle of brilliancy, not only in the lightning but in all brilliant things. So the two converse back and forth, Gārgya successfully giving new definitions and Ajātaśatru declaring their inadequacy with a broader conception which included and went beyond Gārgya’s, and at the same time deducing a practical benefit to any who held such a conception. Gārgya’s conception of Brahma as the person in space was supplemented by the conception of Brahma as the Full, the non-active; the person in the wind, by Indra, the terrible, and the unconquered army; the person in the fire, by the Vanquisher; the person in water, by the Counterpart (of all phenomenal objects); the person in the mirror, by the Shining One; the sound which follows after one, by Life; the person in the quarters of heaven, by the Inseparable Companion; the person consisting of shadow, by Death; the person in the body, by the Embodied One—in all, twelve1 conceptions of Brahma, which exhaust Gārgya Bālāki’s speculation on the subject. He, the challenger, the professional philosopher, then requests instruction from his vanquisher, who, it may be noticed again, was not a Brahman, but a Kshatriya (i.e. a man belonging to the second caste). Ajātaśatru called attention to the anomaly of a Brahman’s coming to a Kshatriya for instruction, but consented to make him know clearly this comparatively new and not fully comprehended conception of Brahma. ‘He, verily, O Bālāki, who is the maker of all these persons [whom you have mentioned in succession], of whom, Edition: current; Page: [18] verily, this is the work—he, verily, should be known’ (Kaụsh. 4.19). With the illustration at hand of a man awaking from sleep, Ajātaśatru shows that finally Brahma is to be conceived of as that into which one goes to sleep and from which one wakes again. The conclusion is: ‘As a spider might come out with his thread, as small sparks come forth from the fire, even so from this Soul come forth all vital energies, all worlds, all gods, all beings. The mystic meaning (upaniṣad) thereof is “the Real of the real” ’ (Bṛih. 2. 1. 20).

This is the most important passage, for it is the first in the Upanishads where the conception of Brahma is subjected to a regressive analysis leading to a conclusion which obtains throughout the remainder of the Upanishads, except as it is further supplemented. In it the following points are to be noticed. The old cosmologies, according to which the world-ground was to be discovered in some particular phenomenal object or substance, are still clung to in so far as Brahma, the newly postulated world-ground, is to be found in one and another individual object, such as the sun, the moon, lightning, space, fire, water, and so forth; they are transcended, however, in so far as those objects are not regarded as themselves of the stuff out of which the world was fashioned, but are looked upon only as a habitation of the world-ground, which is also a person, locally lodged. Such a conception of the first disputant is corrected by the second’s pointing out that the world-ground cannot be the substrate of only certain particular phenomena; that the several principles must be referred back to a single one, ‘who is the maker of these persons, of whom this [universe] is the work’ (Kaush. 4. 19), and (more important still) that if one would come close to the apprehension of this world-ground, it is chiefly to be known as the upholder of his own psychical existence through the period of sleep; that it is a Soul (Ātman) and that this Soul is the source of all existing things, vital energies, worlds, gods, all beings, which are actual, to be sure, but actual only because It is their Real.

A very great advance in the conception of the world-ground is here made, and a doctrine is reached of which most of the later dialogues are further explications. There are two other dialogues however, which by a similar succession of definitions Edition: current; Page: [19] and corrections arrive at the same fundamental conception of Brahma.

In Bṛih. 4. 1-2 Janaka, at Yājñavalkya’s request, states the various philosophical theories that have been propounded to him. Six different conceptions of Brahma, taught by different teachers, are thus elicited. First, that Brahma is speech. This was self-evident, replied Yājñavalkya, but it was saying no more than that one had a mother, or a father, or a teacher; without explaining the seat and support of speech, such a Brahma was one-legged. Yājñavalkya then supplied the deficiency by explaining that its seat was speech, its support space, and it should be reverenced as intelligence, for by speech all things were known. Similarly, the theory that Brahma was breath was approved as true, but condemned as inadequate, and supplemented by the explanation that breath was its seat, space its support, and it should be reverenced as dear, since the breath of life is dear. So Brahma is sight, the eye its seat, space its support; and it should be reverenced as truthfulness, since the eyes see truly. Brahma is hearing, the ear its seat, space its support; and it should be reverenced as the endless, for the quarters of heaven from which one hears are endless. Brahma is mind, its seat is mind, its support is space; and it should be reverenced as the blissful, for with the mind one experiences bliss. Brahma is the heart, its seat is the heart, its support is space; and it should be reverenced as the steadfast, for the heart is a steadfast support. The conclusion is not clearly connected with the dialogue; at 4. 2. 4 there seems to be a break in the text. But it ends with the description of the Ātman (Soul, or Spirit), which is without describable limits.

Here it is to be noticed that Brahma is postulated as manifest in a person’s psychical activities; that It has its seat in the sense-organs and in the mental organs; that It has various qualities, such as the quality of intelligence, truthfulness, endlessness, blissfulness, steadfastness; and that It turns out to be a Self, without any limiting qualities. All these statements are of importance, both as indicating the development of the conception of Brahma and as contrasted with later modifications.

The only other dialogue where an extended attempt is made Edition: current; Page: [20] to arrive at a conception of Brahma, exhibits in philosophy the henotheistic religious tendency of the Indian mind, which elevates the god or the concept immediately concerned to the highest position and accepts it as supreme and complete, only to turn to another and repeat the process. In Chānd. 7. 1 Nārada, in search of saving knowledge, comes to Sanatkumāra with the request ‘Teach me, Sir! (adhīhi bhagavo). [It is probable that this should be ‘Sir, declare Brahma!’ (adhīhi bhagavo brahma), the same request that Bhṛigu Vāruṇi put to his father in a similar progressive definition of Brahma (Tait. 3. 1, referred to on page 16).] The latter, being bidden to declare his learning, enumerates seventeen books and sciences, but is informed that they all teach such knowledge as is only a name—not however worthless, since a name is part of Brahma and should be revered as Brahma. Indeed, he who does so venerate names as Brahma has free sway so far as a name covers the nature of Brahma, which, however, is only to a slight extent. But there is more than a name, viz. speech. That, too, is a manifestation of Brahma, because it makes everything manifest—all the sciences, all objects, all distinctions. But there is more than speech, viz. the mental organ, or mind (manas), for that embraces both speech and name. The self is mind. The world is mind. Brahma is mind. But there is something more than mind or ideation. There is will (saṁkalpa, the constructive faculty). It is through will that everything comes into existence. Again, though will defines a phase of Brahma, there is something greater, viz. thought. Verily, when one thinks, then he wills and performs all the previously named processes. So there is given a successive advance over each previous conception of Brahma, and usually some reason for the dependence of the preceding upon the succeeding. After thought follows meditation, understanding, strength, food, water, heat, space, memory, hope, and breath, or life; everything is breath. Further, by a circuitous route, the author leads to the immortal, unrestricted, undifferenced, self-supported plenum which is below, above, before, behind, to the right, to the left, which is the whole world itself. The next thought seems to be that since it is a spirit for whom there is a below and above, a before and behind, a right and Edition: current; Page: [21] a left, a spirit for whom a whole world exists, therefore all these are themselves spirit, or the Spirit (Ātman). So Spirit alone is below, above, before, behind, to the right, to the left. This whole world is Spirit. Out of Spirit arise hope, memory, space, heat, water, appearance and disappearance, food, strength, understanding, meditation, thought, will, mind, speech, name, sacred verses, religious work—which previously were defined as parts of Brahma. Indeed, this whole world arises out of Spirit (Ātman).

One more reference will show the manner of progress in the development of the conception of Brahma which has now been reached, namely that It is the one great reality, present both in objective phenomena and in the self’s activities (Chānd. 3. 18. 1-2). ‘One should reverence the mind as Brahma. Thus with reference to the self (ātman). Now with reference to the divinities [who operate the different departments of nature]. One should reverence space as Brahma. . . . That Brahma has four quarters. One quarter is speech. One quarter is breath. One quarter is the eye. One quarter is the ear. Thus with reference to the self. Now with reference to the divinities. One quarter is Agni (Fire). One quarter is Vāyu (Wind). One quarter is Aditya (the Sun). One quarter is the quarters of heaven. This is the twofold instruction with reference to the self and with reference to the divinities.’

Two stages are analyzable in the progress thus far: (1) the necessity for a universal, instead of a particular, world-ground led to a theory which postulated a world-ground that embraced all phenomena as parts of it, and so which gradually identified everything with the world-ground; (2) it was felt that this world-ground was in some sense a Soul, co-related with the finite ego. These two tendencies will now be further traced.

According to the earlier theory of Brahma, in which It was the primal entity which procreated the world, the world was somehow apart from Brahma. Thus, ‘having created it, into it he entered’ (Tait. 2. 6). Or, as Chānd. 6. 3 speaks of the originally Existent, after it had procreated heat, water, and food: ‘That divinity thought to itself: “Come! Let me enter these three divinities [i.e. heat, water, and food] with this living Soul, and separate out name and form.” ’

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With the development of the concept of Brahma away from its earliest form (i.e. from the influence of the early cosmogonies), the thought of pervading-all, mentioned in the previous paragraph, and the general enlargement and universalizing of the concept, led to the thought of being-all. So the world was identified with Brahma, in a different sense from what is implied in ‘Verily, in the beginning this world was Brahma’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 10). The world, according to this developed conception, is not the emanation of the original Being that was called Brahma, nor is it strictly the past construct of an artificer Brahma (Kaush. 4. 19). Nor yet is it to be regarded as pervaded by Brahma as by something not itself, as in: ‘He entered in here, even to the fingernail-tips, as a razor would be hidden in a razor-case, or fire in a fire-holder [i.e. the fire-wood]’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 7). But here and now ‘verily, this whole world is Brahma’ (Chānd. 3.14). The section of the Chāndogya just quoted is the first clear statement of the pantheism which had been latent in the previous conception of Brahma and of the relation of the world to It. Later that pantheism is made explicit and remains so through the rest of the Upanishads, where the thought recurs that Brahma actually is everything.1 Thus:—

    • ‘The swan [i.e. the sun] in the clear, the Vasu in the atmosphere,
    • The priest by the altar, the guest in the house,
    • In man, in broad space, in the right (ṛta), in the sky,
    • Born in water, born in cattle, born in the right, born in rock, is the Right, the Great.’
    • (Kaṭha 5. 2.)
    • ‘Brahma, indeed, is this immortal. Brahma before,
    • Brahma behind, to right and to left.
    • Stretched forth below and above,
    • Brahma, indeed, is this whole world, this widest extent.’
    • (Muṇḍ. 2. 2. 11.)

‘For truly, everything here is Brahma’ (Māṇḍ. 2).

Thus far, in the exposition of the development of the pantheistic conception of the world, the merging of all objective Edition: current; Page: [23] phenomena into a unitary world-ground has been the process emphasized; for this seems to have been its first stage. Objective phenomena are the ones which first arrest the attention and demand explanation. But, as the Śvetāśvatara, at its beginning (1. 2), in recounting the various speculative theories, states explicitly, there is another important factor, namely ‘the existence of the soul (ātman),’ which cannot be lumped in with material objects, but presents another and more difficult fact for the philosopher who would find a unitary ground that shall include the diverse objective and subjective.

This leads over to what was stated on page 21 as the second stage in the development of the conception of Brahma as the world-ground, namely, that It is in some sense a Soul co-related with the finite ego.

CHAPTER V: THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE CONCEPTION OF THE ATMAN AND ITS UNION WITH BRAHMA

In the dialogue in Bṛih. 2. 1 (and its longer recension, Kaush. 4), where a progressive attempt was made to conceive of Brahma, it was admitted that Brahma was to be found not only in the not-self, but also in the self; that It was not only the essence of cosmical phenomena, but also of the organic and mental functions of the human person.

This probably was an outgrowth of the primitive anthropomorphic notion that the world-ground is an enormous human person, graphically portrayed in the ‘Hymn of the Cosmic Person,’ RV. 10. 90. The sun came out of his eye, the moon from his mind, Indra and Agni (fire) from his mouth, Vāyu (the wind) from his breath, the air from his navel, the sky from his head, the earth from his feet, and so forth.

In the Atharva-Veda (10. 7. 32-34) the earth is the base of the highest Brahma, the air his belly, the sky his head, the sun and moon his eyes, fire his mouth, the wind his breaths.

In the cosmology in Bṛih. 1. 2 fire is the semen of the Edition: current; Page: [24] demiurge Death, the east is his head, the south-east and north-east his arms, the west his hinder part, the south-west and the north-west his thighs, the south and north his sides, the sky his back, the atmosphere his belly, the earth his chest.

According to Aitareya 1, there proceeded from the mouth of the world-person fire, from his nostrils the wind, from his eyes the sun, from his ears the quarters of heaven, from his skin plants and trees, from his heart the moon, from his navel death, from his male generative organ water. But here the important thought is added that not only are the bodily parts of this cosmic person to be observed in the external world, but they are also correlated with the functions of the individual person. So, in the sequel of the Aitareya account, fire became speech and entered in the mouth of the individual; wind became breath and entered in his nose; the sun, sight in his eyes; the quarters of heaven, hearing in his ears; plants and trees, hairs in his skin; the moon, mind in the heart; Death, semen in the generative organ.

This is perhaps the first detailed mention of a correspondence between the microcosm and the macrocosm. Glimpses of it there have been before, as in Chānd. 3. 18. 2, where Brahma, selfwise, is fourfold: speech, breath, eye, ear; and with regard to nature, is implicitly corresponding, also fourfold: fire, wind, sun, quarters. A correspondence between four parts of the bodily self and of the world is as old as the Cremation Hymn of the Rig-Veda (10. 16. 3), where the deceased is addressed: ‘Let thine eye go to the sun, thy breath to wind,’ a notion of dissolution at death which recurs in Īśā 17, ‘My breath to the immortal wind,’ and more fully in Bṛih. 3. 2. 13: ‘The voice of a dead man goes into fire, his breath into wind, his eye into the sun, his mind into the moon, his hearing into the quarters of heaven, his body into the earth, his soul (ātman) into space, the hairs of his head into plants, the hairs of his body into trees, and his blood and semen into water.’

After the correspondence between the parts of the bodily self and the cosmic phenomena was firmly in mind, the next step with the development of abstract thought was probably to conceive of the world as really a Soul (Ātman), a universal Edition: current; Page: [25] Soul of which the individual self or soul is a miniature. This was a great step in advance. A sign of the dawning of the philosophical self-consciousness and of a deeper insight into the nature and meaning of the self is given in Bṛih. 1. 4. 7: ‘One’s self (ātman), for therein all these become one. That same thing, namely, this self, is the trace of this All; for by it one knows this All. Just as, verily, one might find by a footprint.’ This thought recurs in Śvet. 2. 15:—

  • ‘When with the nature of the self, as with a lamp,
  • A practiser of Yoga beholds here the nature of Brahma.’

Still crude and figurative, it is nevertheless of deep philosophical significance, yielding a concept which is of equal importance to that of Brahma. Its development may in the same way be traced now, remembering that this Ātman theory was not in all probability a development subsequent to that of Brahma, which has already been traced, though its beginnings certainly were posterior to the beginnings of the Brahma theory. The two, it would seem, progressed simultaneously and influenced each other until their final union. For the sake of clearness in exposition, however, they are here analyzed and followed separately.

In the second movement, Ātman being postulated as the world-ground, attempts were made to conceive of him as was the case with Brahma. Thus there was an early theory of procreation, Bṛih. 1. 4. 1-5, but much coarser than the similar theory with Brahma. Although by a recognized mistake he was stricken by fear at first and overcame it, Ātman was possessed by a feeling of loneliness in his primeval solitariness and wished: ‘Would that I had a wife, then I would procreate’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 17). By an act of self-bifurcation which, etymologically interpreted, explains the existence and complementary nature of husband and wife, he produced a female principle by union with which, the pair continually converting themselves into different species, all the different kinds of animals were born. Then, by the usual method of attrition and blowing, he made fire. This crude myth, near the beginning of the earliest Upanishad, is based on the primitive idea that the same empirical methods which man uses for productive Edition: current; Page: [26] purposes, especially the one which is the most mysterious and which accounts for his own production, may be held accountable analogously for the production of the world. It is in the old Brahmanic style and is somewhat misplaced in an Upanishad. The idea does not recur again.

A more serious attempt to conceive of Ātman is the dialogue in Chānd. 5. 11-18, which again resembles similar attempts with Brahma. Five learned householders came together and discussed: ‘Who is our Ātman? What is Brahma?’ (a collocation which shows that the two theories of the world-ground were being connected; in this passage they are not, however, identified, as they are to be later). These five decided to resort to another who had the reputation of understanding that universal Ātman, but even he dared not expound him and answer all questions concerning him. The six then repair to the famed Aśvapati for instruction. He, in genuine Socratic manner, first elicits from each of them his present conception of the universal Ātman. One says that he venerates the sky as the universal Ātman. Aśvapati commends the conception and gives assurance that he is shining like the sky, but a great deal more. The sky would be only his head. The others in turn contribute their conceptions, all of which are accepted as true, but as only partially true, and in essence false. The universal Ātman is indeed the sun, and like it all-formed; but the sun is only his eye. He is indeed the wind, and like it moving in various paths; but the wind is only his breath. The universal Ātman is indeed space, and like it expanded; but space is only his body. He is indeed water, and like it abundant; but water is only his bladder. The universal Ātman is indeed the earth, and like it a support; but the earth is only his feet. The six Brahmans, as they learned from Aśvapati, in spite of having thus grasped partial truth, had made a most serious error in conceiving of Ātman as something apart from themselves. This universal Ātman, or Soul, is best referred to as in oneself.

Important steps in the development of the Ātman doctrine are here taken. In the figurative manner of speculation, from which Indian philosophy as well as all philosophy proceeded, Ātman, like Brahma, is first conceived under the form of particular Edition: current; Page: [27] objects of nature. The truth there contained is appreciated and, better than in the Brahma-dialogues, commended by being immediately universalized. All the great nature-gods, mentioned as henotheistically venerated for the philosophical world-ground, are indeed the Ātman, but only parts of him. They may, by an accommodation to the learner’s standpoint of sense-thought, be regarded as his bodily parts. But by transcending this lower plane of attention directed to objectively observed facts, Aśvapati directed them, in their search for ultimate reality, to an inclusive cosmic Self, which must be conceived of after the analogy of a human self and with which the human self must be identified.

A new line of thought is here entered upon, namely introspection, which always follows after extrospection, but which marks the beginnings of a deeper philosophic thought. What it finally led on to will be described after an exposition of certain developments and conjunctions of the concept of Ātman.

The world-ground being Ātman, an objective Soul, which was known by the analogy of the soul, but which externally included the soul, certain closer relations were drawn between the not-self and the self, of both of which that Ātman was the ground. On pages 23-24 citations were made illustrating the notion of correspondences between parts of the world as a cosmic corporeal person and of the individual’s bodily self. That notion occurs also in the first chapter of the Chāndogya. ‘This [breath in the mouth] and that [sun] are alike. This is warm. That is warm. People designate this as sound (svara), that as sound (svara) [an approximation to svar, light] and as the reflecting (pratyasvara)’ (Chānd. 1. 3. 2). ‘The form of this one is the same as that [Person seen in the sun]’ (Chānd. 1. 7. 5). But now with the doctrine of a universal Ātman immanent both in the subjective and in the objective, it is no longer similarities, but parts of a unity or identities. ‘Both he who is here in a person and he who is yonder in the sun—he is one’ (Tait. 2. 8; 3. 10. 4). ‘He who is in the fire, and he who is here in the heart, and he who is yonder in the sun—he is one’ (Maitri 6. 17; 7. 7). ‘He who is yonder, yonder Person (puruṣa)—I myself am he!’ (Bṛih. 5. 15; Īśā 16). ‘Verily, what the space outside of a person is—that is the same as what Edition: current; Page: [28] the space within a person is. Verily, what the space within a person is—that is the same as what the space here within the heart is. That is the Full, the Non-moving’ (Chānd. 3. 12. 7-9).

Longer descriptions of Ātman as the basis of the unity implied in the usual correlations of the not-self and the self, are the two following: Ātman is the person in the earth and the person in the body; in the waters and in the semen; in fire and in speech; in wind and in breath; in the sun and in the eye; in the quarters and in the ear and in the echo; in the moon and in the mind; in lightning and in heat; in thunder and in sound; in space and in the space of the heart; in law and in virtuousness; in truth and in truthfulness; in humanity and in a human; in the Self and in the self. All these are just Ātman (Bṛih. 2. 5). Bṛih. 3. 9. 10-17 similarly presents this idea of the one Person immanent in and including the self and the not-self: the person in the earth and in fire is also the person in the body; the person in the sun is also the person in appearances and in the eye; the person in space is also the person in the ear and in hearing; the person in darkness and in the shadow is also the person in the heart; the person in the waters is also the person in semen and in the heart. And finally he is Ātman, the Self, the Soul.

So, as Yājñavalkya explained to Ushastas: ‘He who breathes in with your breathing in is the Soul (Ātman) of yours which is in all things. He who breathes out with your breathing out is the Soul of yours which is in all things. He who breathes about with your breathing about is the Soul of yours which is in all things. He who breathes up with your breathing up is the Soul of yours which is in all things’ (Bṛih. 3. 4. 1). The inner essence, then, of the objective and the subjective is one Being, and that, too, of the nature of a Self, by reason of the reality of the directly known self which necessarily constitutes a part of that ground of all being.

But by a different course of speculation and (as was natural with the earlier) one which had regard more especially to the objective, the conception of a single world-ground and then of the actual being of the world itself had been that of Brahma. An objective entity though this Brahma was, the unity of being which it was intended to signify could not disregard the Edition: current; Page: [29] existence and activities of the self, which surely were as real as the sun, moon, waters, space, and so forth that had been the prominent facts to be grounded in the unitary being of the world of Brahma. An approachment to Brahma as underlying the self also was being made, as was shown in the exposition of the development of the conception of Brahma. But, differently from the realistic procedure with Brahma, a more personal and self-like ground was necessary for effecting the union of the psychologically viewed subjective and objective. For this purpose the old conception of a cosmic Person was more serviceable; and it was developed away from its first materialistic and corporeal connections to that of a more spiritual Ātman, who is immanent in self and not-self and who constitutes the unity expressed in their correlation.

Yet finally these two world-grounds, Brahma and Ātman, are not different and separate. Their essential oneness, as aspects of the same great Being, was at first only hinted at, but was later explicitly stated. The suspicion that these two theories, which were becoming current and which people desired to understand more fully, were both of the same Being, was manifested by the form in which learners who came to recognized philosophers for instruction put their questions. Thus, Ushastas came to Yājñavalkya and said: ‘Explain to me him who is the Brahma, present and not beyond our ken, him who is the Soul (Ātman) in all things’ (Bṛih. 3. 4. 1). Likewise the five householders who came to Aśvapati were first discussing among themselves ‘Who is our Ātman (Soul)? What is Brahma?’ (Chānd. 5. 11. 1).

Then we find it directly stated: ‘Verily, that great unborn Soul, undecaying, undying, immortal, fearless, is Brahma’ (Bṛih. 4. 4. 25). ‘He [i. e. Ātman] is Brahma’ (Ait. 5. 3). ‘Him [i. e. Brahma] alone know as the one Soul (Ātman). Other words dismiss’ (Muṇḍ. 2. 2. 5). ‘The Soul (Ātman), which pervades all things . . . , this is Brahma’ (Śvet. 1. 16). Before the identification of Brahma and Ātman was formally made, the two terms were hovering near each other as designations of the ultimate world-ground, as in Bṛih. 2. 5. 1, where to emphasize a point the phrases are used in succession: ‘This Soul (Ātman), this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.’ After Edition: current; Page: [30] the identification was made the two became interchangeable terms, as in Chānd. 8. 14. 1: ‘. . . Brahma, that is the immortal, that is the Soul (Ātman),’ and Muṇḍ. 2.2.9: ‘Brahma, that which knowers of the Soul (Ātman) do know’ (through the whole of this section, where the Imperishable is being described, the terms Brahma and Ātman are used indifferently). So the two great conceptions—Brahma, reached first realistically, the unitary cosmic ground, with outreachings towards a cosmo-anthropic ground; and Ātman, the inner being of the self and the not-self, the great world-spirit—were joined, the former taking over to itself the latter conception and the two being henceforth to a considerable degree synonymous. Here the quest for the real,1 for the unity of the diversified world, for the key to the universe, reached a goal. That which Śvetaketu did not know, though he had been away from home studying twelve years and had studied all the Vedas and thought himself learned, even that ‘whereby what has not been heard of becomes heard of, what has not been thought of becomes thought of, what has not been understood becomes understood’ (Chānd. 6. 1. 1-3); that for instruction in which Śaunaka, the great householder, came to Aṅgiras (Muṇḍ. 1. 1. 3); that which Nārada knew not, though he knew eighteen books and sciences, and for lack of the knowledge of which he was sorrowing (Chānd. 7. 1. 1-2); that for complete instruction in which Indra remained with Prajāpati as a pupil for one hundred and one years—that supreme object is just this Brahma, this Ātman, who is in the world, who is the great Self, the ground of oneself. He is the highest object of knowledge, whom one should desire to know.

  • ‘By knowing Him only, a wise
  • Brahman should get for himself intelligence.’
  • (Bṛih. 4. 4. 21.)

He is the key to all knowledge. ‘Verily, with the seeing of, with the hearkening to, with the thinking of, and with the understanding Edition: current; Page: [31] standing of the Soul, this world-all is known’ (Bṛih. 2. 4. 5). ‘Verily, he who knows that thread and the so-called Inner Controller knows Brahma, he knows the worlds, he knows the gods, he knows the Vedas, he knows created things, he knows the Soul, he knows everything’ (Bṛih. 3. 7. 1). ‘This is the knowledge the Brahmans know. Thereby I know what is to be known’ (Bṛih. 5. 1. 1). ‘As, when a drum is being beaten, one would not be able to grasp the external sounds, but by grasping the drum or the beater of the drum the sound is grasped; as, when a conch-shell is being blown, one would not be able to grasp the external sounds, but by grasping the conch-shell or the blower of the conch-shell the sound is grasped; as, when a lute is being played, one would not be able to grasp the external sounds, but by grasping the lute or the player of the lute the sound is grasped’—so by comprehending Ātman or Brahma everything is comprehended (Bṛih. 2. 4. 7-9).

So the unity which has been searched for from the beginning of Indian speculation was reached. ‘As all the spokes are held together in the hub and felly of a wheel, just so in this Soul all things, all gods, all worlds, all breathing things, all selves are held together’ (Bṛih. 2. 5. 15). Pantheism now is the ruling conception of the world, for the world is identical with Ātman. ‘Ātman alone is the whole world’ (Chānd. 7. 25. 2). ‘This Brahmanhood, this Kshatrahood, these worlds, these gods, these beings, everything here is what this Soul is’ (Bṛih. 2. 4. 6; 4. 5. 7). ‘Who is this one?’ is asked in Ait. 5. 1, and the reply is: ‘He is Brahma; he is Indra; he is Prajāpati; [he is] all the gods here; and these five gross elements, namely earth, wind, space, water, light; these things and those which are mingled of the fine, as it were; origins of one sort or another: those born from an egg, and those born from a womb, and those born from sweat, and those born from a sprout; horses, cows, persons, elephants; whatever breathing thing there is here—whether moving or flying, and what is stationary.’ As the later metrical Śvetāśvatara expresses the thought:—

  • ‘That God faces all the quarters of heaven.
  • Aforetime was he born, and he it is within the womb.
  • He has been born forth. He will be born.’
  • (Śvet. 2. 16.)
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And again, with more indefiniteness, concerning the pantheistic ‘That’:—

  • ‘That surely is Agni (fire). That is Āditya (the sun).
  • That is Vāyu (the wind), and That is the moon.
  • That surely is the pure. That is Brahma.
  • That is the waters. That is Prajāpati (Lord of Creation).
  • Thou art woman. Thou art man.
  • Thou art the youth and the maiden too.
  • Thou as an old man totterest with a staff.
  • Being born, thou becomest facing in every direction.
  • Thou art the dark-blue bird and the green [parrot] with red eyes.
  • Thou hast the lightning as thy child. Thou art the seasons and the seas.
  • Having no beginning, thou dost abide with all-pervadingness,
  • Wherefrom all beings are born.’
  • (Śvet. 4. 2-4.)

And most important of all, as Uddālaka nine times repeated to Śvetaketu (Chānd. 6. 8-16): ‘That art thou.’

CHAPTER VI: THE REALISTIC CONCEPTION OF THE ULTIMATE UNITY, AND THE DOCTRINE OF ILLUSION

What, now, is the nature of that single all-encompassing pantheistic Being that has been discovered? It must possess as many qualities as there are in the whole of the real world which it constitutes. This attribution of all possible qualities to the Being of the world is made in the famous Śāṇḍilya section of the Chāndogya (3. 14). ‘Verily, this whole world is Brahma. . . . He who consists of mind, whose body is life, whose form is light, whose conception is truth, whose soul (ātman) is space, containing all works, containing all desires, containing all odors, containing all tastes, encompassing this whole world, the unspeaking, the unconcerned, . . . smaller than a grain of rice, or a barley-corn, or a mustard-seed, or a grain of millet, or the kernel of a grain of millet, . . . [yet] greater than the earth, greater than the atmosphere, greater than the sky, Edition: current; Page: [33] greater than these worlds.’ It must also be capable of all contraries:—

    • ‘Unmoving, the One is swifter than the mind.
    • The sense-powers reached not It, speeding on before.
    • Past others running, This goes standing.
    • In It Mātariśvan places action.
    • It moves. It moves not.
    • It is far, and It is near.
    • It is within all this,
    • And It is outside of all this.’
    • (Īśā 4-5.)
    • ‘Sitting, he proceeds afar.
    • Lying, he goes everywhere.’
    • (Kaṭha 2. 21.)

The diverse identification and constitution of this pantheistic Being are further expressed in the verses:—

    • ‘As fire (Agni), he warms. He is the sun (Sūrya).
    • He is the bountiful rain (Parjanya). He is the wind (Vāyu).
    • He is the earth, matter, God,
    • Being and Non-being, and what is immortal.’
    • (Praśna 2. 5.)
    • ‘What that is, know as Being and Non-being.’
    • (Muṇḍ. 2. 2. 1.)

This necessity of postulating in the substrate itself of the world the whole store of materials and qualities which exist in the world, led to the summary contained in Bṛih. 4. 4. 5, where Brahma is described as ‘made of knowledge, of mind, of breath, of seeing, of hearing, of earth, of water, of wind, of space, of energy and of non-energy, of desire and of non-desire, of anger and of non-anger, of virtuousness and of non-virtuousness. It is made of everything. This is what is meant by the saying “made of this, made of that.” ’

But such a realistic conception of Brahma as a conglomerate was subversive of the very idea of unity which the concept of Brahma fundamentally signified. All those diverse material objects, psychical functions, and mental states as such could not be regarded as the materials composing the structure of a unitary world-ground. Yet there is diversity and manifoldness in the being of the world which cannot be regarded as existing apart from the world-ground. How account for them?

In one of the old cosmologies (Tait. 2. 6), where Brahma Edition: current; Page: [34] wished that he were many, performed austerities, procreated himself, and ejected this whole world from himself, it is stated that he entered into it with a double nature. ‘He became both the actual and the yon, both the defined and the undefined, both the based and the non-based, both the conscious and the unconscious, both the real and the false.’ Here is perhaps the first emergence of the thought which is the solution to the question put above. It is the distinction made between the so-called phenomenal and noumental, between the sensuously perceived and that which cannot be thus brought into consciousness, but can only be thought. This notion that there is much of reality which is not within the sphere of the senses, or within the world of what is called common-sense experiences, expresses itself here and there in the early part of the Upanishads, as in Chānd. 3. 12. 6.—

  • ‘All beings are one fourth of him;
  • Three fourths, the immortal in the sky.’

Also in Bṛih. 1. 4. 7: ‘Him they see not, for [as seen] he is incomplete.’ And later also, more like the modern conceptions of immanence and transcendence, as in Bṛih. 3. 7. 3: ‘He who, dwelling in the earth, yet is other than the earth, . . . whose body the earth is, who controls the earth from within,’ and similarly of twenty other objects.

  • ‘As the one wind has entered the world
  • And becomes corresponding in form to every form,
  • So the one Inner Soul of all things
  • Is corresponding in form to every form, and yet is outside.’
  • (Katha 5. 10.)

But it is by the distinction between the noumental and the phenomenal that the apparent conflict between the One and the many is solved. In a noteworthy passage, Bṛih. 1. 6. 3, it is declared that ‘Life (prāṇa, ‘breath’) [a designation of the Ātman], verily, is the Immortal. Name and form [the usual phrase signifying individuality] are the actual. By them this Life is veiled.’ Similarly in Bṛih. 2. 1. 20: ‘The mystic meaning (upaniṣad) thereof is the “Real of the real.” Breathing creatures, verily, are the real. He is their Real.’ Bṛih. 2. 3. 1 makes the distinction explicit by affirming that ‘there are, Edition: current; Page: [35] assuredly, two forms of Brahma.’ It is the same thought, for the section closes with the words of Bṛih. 2. 1. 20, just cited; but the effort to express the great truth finds itself halting and falling back directly upon the early sensuous conceptions which it endeavored to rise above.

These two forms of Brahma are the formed and the unformed, the mortal and the immortal, the stationary and the moving, the actual and the yon. As regards the Vedic naturegods, the unformed, immortal, moving, yonder Brahma is the wind and the atmosphere. The essence of that is the person in the sun-disk. The formed, the mortal, the stationary, the actual Brahma is what is different from the wind and the atmosphere. Its essence is the sun which gives forth heat. As regards the self, the unformed, immortal, moving, yonder Brahma is the breath and the space in the heart. Its essence is the person in the right eye. The formed, mortal, stationary, and actual Brahma is what is different from the breath and the intercardiac space. Its essence is the eye (this being typical of the senses by which the phenomenal is perceived). The glorious, brilliant nature of the higher Brahma is then represented by similes of the bright and shining—a saffron-colored robe, white wool, the purple beetle, a flame of fire, a white lotus flower, a sudden flash of lightning. But immediately there follows the warning that the noumental Brahma cannot be represented to the senses, indeed cannot be defined by any positive characteristics. ‘Neti, neti: Not thus! Not so!’ (Bṛih. 2. 3. 6: 3. 9. 26). Nevertheless it is the reality of the individual phenomenal actualities. Though starting with and making use of sense data and accepting a strange pair of differentia, namely the stationary and the moving, for the actual and the yon, or for the phenomenal and the noumental Brahmas, this section nevertheless advances toward the final idealistic conception of reality, to which the pantheism of the Upanishads led.

The two Brahmas are described again in Maitri 6. 15. ‘There are, assuredly, two forms of Brahma: Time and the Timeless. That which is prior to the sun is the Timeless (a-kāla) without parts (a-kala). But that which begins with the sun is Time, which has parts.’

The thought begins to appear that if all is One, the manifold Edition: current; Page: [36] differences that seem so real in experience are not constitutive of the inner being of that One; they must be only an appearance, a phenomenon. So again the two Brahmas are described in Maitri 6. 22: ‘Verily there are two Brahmas to be meditated upon: sound and non-sound. Now non-sound is revealed only by sound. . . . Of it there is this sevenfold comparison: like rivers, a bell, a brazen vessel, a wheel, the croaking of frogs, rain, as when one speaks in a sheltered place. Passing beyond this variously characterized [sound-Brahma], men disappear in the supreme, the non-sound, the unmanifest Brahma.’

These two Brahmas, the one manifold with sense qualities, and the other a superphenomenal unity, were accepted as both real, though in different ways. They were ‘both the higher and the lower’ of Muṇḍ. 2. 2. 8 and Praśna 5. 2; the two forms of Śvet. 1. 13. They formed the subject-matter of the ‘two knowledges to be known—as indeed the knowers of Brahma are wont to say: a higher and a lower.’ The lower knowledge is of various sciences, but ‘the higher is that whereby that Imperishable is apprehended’ (Muṇḍ. 1. 1. 4-5). Their importance in a complete knowledge of Brahma is affirmed by Kaṭha 6. 13, for

  • ‘He can indeed be comprehended by the thought “He is”
  • And by [admitting] the real nature of both [his comprehensibility and his incomprehensibility].’

But this dualizing of the world-ground, this postulating of two Brahmas when the fundamental and repeated axiom of the whole Upanishadic speculation was that ‘there is only one Brahma, without a second,’ induced by way of correction the further development of the previous conception of phenomenality.1 Reality is One. Diversity and manifoldness are only an appearance.

  • ‘There is on earth no diversity.
  • He gets death after death,
  • Who perceives here seeming diversity.
  • As a unity only is It to be looked upon—
  • This indemonstrable, enduring Being.’
  • (Bṛih. 4. 4. 19-20.)
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  • ‘The seer sees not death,
  • Nor sickness, nor any distress.
  • The seer sees only the All,
  • Obtains the All entirely.’
  • (Chānd. 7. 26. 2.)

That is the real Brahma, the undifferenced unity. The lower Brahma of sense-manifoldness, in which everything appears as a self-subsistent entity, is merely an appearance due to a person’s ignorance that all is essentially one; that is, it is an illusion. So Maitri 6. 3 says plainly of the two Brahmas: ‘There are, assuredly, two forms of Brahma: the formed and the formless. Now, that which is the formed is unreal; that which is the formless is real.’

The distinction between the phenomenal and the superphenomenal was, as has been described, made quite early in the Upanishadic thought. First, the phenomenal, though admittedly a part of the reality of the world, is only a fragment of its totality. ‘Him they see not, for [as seen] he is incomplete. . . .Whoever worships one or another of these [individual manifestations]—he knows not; for he is incomplete with one or another of these’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 7). It is mere ignorance (avidyā) on one’s own part, then, that allows him to rest in the things of sense as the ultimate being of the world; but this ignorance, or non-knowledge, is remediable under instruction concerning the underlying unity.

But soon the conception arose that the error is attributable not so much to oneself, as to that Other which hides its unitary nature. ‘There is nothing by which he is not covered, nothing by which he is not hid’ (Bṛih. 2. 5. 18). Poetically expressed, ‘Life, verily, is the Immortal. Name and form are the real. By them that Life is veiled’ (Bṛih. 1. 6. 3). He who is essentially one,

  • ‘The Inner Soul (antarātman) of all things . . . ,
  • Who makes his one form manifold’
  • (Kaṭha 5. 12),

is performing a piece of supernatural magic in appearing as many.

  • ‘He became corresponding in form to every form.
  • This is to be looked upon as a form of him.
  • Indra by his magic powers (māyā) goes about in many forms;
  • Yoked are his ten-hundred steeds.’
  • (Bṛih. 2. 5. 19.)
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This is the first occurrence in the Upanishads of the word māyā—in the plural, be it noticed, and as a quotation from Rig-Veda 6. 47. 18, where it occurs many times in the meaning of ‘supernatural powers’ or ‘artifices.’ It is this thought which is developed into the theory of cosmic illusion and which is expressed in Śvet. 4. 9-10, the favorite proof-text in the Upanishads of the later Māyā doctrine.

  • ‘This whole world the illusion-maker projects out of this [Brahma].
  • And in it by illusion the other is confined.
  • Now, one should know that Nature is illusion,
  • And that the Mighty Lord is the illusion-maker.’

Such was the beginning of that which became a prominent doctrine of the later Vedānta, the doctrine of Māyā or the inevitable illusoriness of all human cognition. In its early development it did not base itself in any way upon what was a chief source of the early Greek scepticism, namely illusions of sense. The sole reference to them in the Upanishads, Kaṭha 5. 11—

  • ‘As the sun, the eye of the whole world,
  • Is not sullied by the external faults of the eyes’—

is not used as an argument for illusion, though Śaṅkara in his Commentary in loco explains it by the stock simile of the later Vedānta in which the piece of rope lying by the wayside appears in the twilight as a snake to the belated traveler.1 On the contrary, sight is to the philosophers of the Upanishads the symbol of truth. ‘Sight is truthfulness, for when they say to a man who sees with his eyes “Have you seen?” and he says “I have seen,” that is the truth’ (Bṛih. 4. 1. 4; similarly also in Bṛih. 5. 14. 4).

The doctrine of illusion, then, was the speculative outcome of the conflict between the phenomenal and the super-phenomenal, between the lower and the higher Brahma. It was the logical Edition: current; Page: [39] conclusion of the abstract presupposition as to the nature and possibilities of the pure unity which these thinkers conceived of as the essence of reality and to which they pressed on as the great goal of all their speculations. The manifold world of sense furnished no such unity and therefore had to be abandoned as illusory and unreal, in favor of that undifferenced unity to which they were driven as the basis underlying the illusory and which, just because it is beyond all sense-qualities, distinctions, or limitations of any kind, is the real Brahma.

  • ‘As a unity only is It to be looked upon—
  • This indemonstrable, enduring Being.’
  • (Bṛih. 4. 4. 20.)

The attempts to describe this pure unity of being are numerous. ‘This Brahma is without an earlier and without a later, without an inside and without an outside’ (Bṛih. 2. 5. 19). ‘For him east and the other directions exist not, nor across, nor below, nor above. . . . [He is] unlimited’ (Maitri 6. 17). ‘It is not coarse, not fine, not short, not long, not glowing, not adhesive, without shadow and without darkness, without air and without space, without stickiness [intangible], odorless, tasteless, without eye, without ear, without voice, without mind, without energy, without breath, without mouth, [without personal or family name, unageing, undying, without fear, immortal, stainless, not uncovered, not covered], without measure, without inside and without outside. It consumes nothing soever. No one soever consumes it’ (Bṛih. 3. 8. 8).

  • ‘What is soundless, touchless, formless, imperishable,
  • Likewise tasteless, constant, odorless,
  • Without beginning, without end, higher than the great.’
  • (Kaṭha 3. 15.)

‘That which is invisible, ungraspable, without family, without caste—without sight or hearing is It, without hand or foot, eternal’ (Muṇḍ. 1. 1. 6). He is apart from all moral, causal, or temporal relations. One must put Him aside as possessed of qualities and take Him as the subtile only (Kaṭha 2. 13-14). The ultimate is void of any mark (a-liṅga) whatever (Kaṭha 6. 8; Śvet. 6. 9); without qualities (nir-guṇa) (Śvet. 6. 11). About this higher Brahma ‘there is the teaching “Not thus! Not Edition: current; Page: [40] so!” (neti, neti), for there is nothing higher than this [negative definition]’ (Bṛih. 2. 3. 6; 3. 9. 26; 4. 2. 4). ‘Indefinable,’ ‘inconceivable,’ mere negative statements are all that can be asserted of this pure being, which ex hypothesi is incapable of the qualification, determination, and diversity implied in descriptive attribution. This is exactly the conclusion which Spinoza reached with his in many respects similar pantheism—the famous dictum ‘Omnis determinatio negatio est.’1

How now is this kind of real Brahma to be known? The practical method, stated in Kaṭha 2. 8-9 and frequently elsewhere, that if one were taught by a competent guru, or teacher, he might find Brahma, is of course superseded. The progress of speculation had taken Brahma to that far-off, transcendent realm where it is a question whether it may be reached or known at all. Certainly—

  • ‘Not above, not across,
  • Not in the middle has one grasped Him.
  • There is no likeness of Him
  • Whose name is Great Glory.
  • His form is not to be beheld.
  • No one soever sees Him with the eye.
  • They who know Him with heart and mind
  • As abiding in the heart, become immortal.’
  • (Śvet. 4. 19-20.)

But no! that higher Brahma is not accessible to knowledge by sense or by thought or by instruction:—

  • ‘There the eye goes not;
  • Speech goes not, nor the mind.
  • We know not, we understand not
  • How one would teach it.’ (Kena 3.)
  • ‘Wherefrom words turn back,
  • Together with the mind, not having attained.’
  • (Tait. 2. 4, 9.)

No more than its bare existence can be postulated.

  • ‘Not by speech, not by mind,
  • Not by sight can He be apprehended.
  • How can He be comprehended
  • Otherwise than by one’s saying “He is!”?
  • (Kaṭha 6. 12.)

But even here the real point is dodged.

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‘He who rules the ignorance and the knowledge is another.’

(Śvet. 5. 1.)
  • ‘[Brahma is] higher than understanding.’ (Muṇd. 2. 2. 1.)
  • ‘Other indeed is It than the known,
  • And moreover above the unknown.’ (Kena 3.)
  • ‘Into blind darkness enter they
  • That worship ignorance;
  • Into darkness greater than that, as it were,
  • That delight in knowledge.
  • Other indeed, they say, than knowledge!
  • Other, they say, than non-knowledge!
  • —Thus have we heard from the wise
  • Who to us have explained It.’
  • (Īśā 9-10.)

Utterly inconceivable is this supreme Brahma. The very attempt to conceive of it indicates that one does not know the essential fact about it. There follows the paradox:

  • ‘It is conceived of by him by whom It is not conceived of.
  • He by whom It is conceived of, knows It not.
  • It is not understood by those who [say they] understand It.
  • It is understood by those who [say they] understand It not.’
  • (Kena 11.)

Such is the outcome of a long circuitous journey to reach that ultimate unity of reality which was dimly foreseen long before in the Rig-Veda and which had been the goal of all the succeeding speculations. What is it—we pause and ask—that has now been reached? On the one hand an illusory world and on the other hand an unknowable reality. Honestly and earnestly had the thinkers of the Upanishads sought to find the true nature of this world of experience and of a beyond which constantly lured them on, but it had proved to be an ignis fatuus. Yet they did not give up in the despair of agnosticism or in the disappointment of failure. The glimpses which they had had of that final unity had frequently suggested that the self must be accounted for in the unity of being. They had found an underlying basis for the subjective and objective in the great Ātman, the world-soul, like unto the self-known soul and inclusive of that, but in itself external to it. And they had found that the great Ātman was identical with the great Brahma, the power or efficacy that actuates Edition: current; Page: [42] the world. But in the explanation of the phenomenal and the noumental that Brahma had fallen apart and vanished, one part into the illusory and the other into the unknowable.

CHAPTER VII: IDEALISM AND THE CONCEPTION OF PURE UNITY

The former glimpses of that nearest of known facts, the self, showed the thinkers of the Upanishads that the path they had been following, the path of realism, had logically led them to an unsatisfying conclusion. The unity for which they had been searching as if it were something outside of and apart from the self, could never be reached. For there still remains the stubborn dualism of self and not-self, however deeply the two might be set into a pantheistic unity which should embrace them both in an external grasp. Epistemological idealism must henceforth be the path traveled in order to reach the goal of an absolute unity.

This was a wonderful discovery, intuitions of which had flashed out here and there, but which was forced upon them for adoption by the limit which they had reached along the line of epistemological realism. The final unity could not and would not, then, be found outside of self, but in it. In truth, the self is the unity that they had been looking for all along, ‘for therein all these [things] become one’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 7), and only in it, i. e. in one’s own consciousness, do things exist. ‘As far, verily, as this world-space extends, so far extends the space within the heart. Within it, indeed, are contained both heaven and earth, both fire and wind, both sun and moon, lightning and stars, both what one possesses here and what one does not possess; everything here is contained within it’ (Chānd. 8. 1. 3).

Realistic pantheism has been changed into epistemological idealism. All existence is for, and in, the self. ‘This whole world is Brahma. . . . This Soul of mine within the heart . . .’ (Chānd. 3. 14. 1, 3). ‘He is the world-protector. He is Edition: current; Page: [43] the world-sovereign. He is the lord of all. He is my self’ (Kaush. 3. 8). ‘I am Brahma!’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 10). Thus that world-ground, that unity of being which was being searched for realistically outside of the self, and which, as it was being approached, seemed to recede back into the illusory and into the unknowable, is none other than the self, which had eluded cognition for the reason that, as the subject of consciousness, it could not become an object. ‘He is the unseen Seer, the unheard Hearer, the unthought Thinker, the ununderstood Understander’ (Bṛih. 3. 7. 23). ‘You could not see the seer of seeing. You could not hear the hearer of hearing. You could not think the thinker of thinking. You could not understand the understander of understanding’ (Bṛih. 3. 4. 2). ‘Wherewith would one understand him with whom one understands this All? Lo, wherewith would one understand the understander?’ (Bṛih. 2. 4. 14).

The world, which by the simile of birds supported on a tree as their roost had been realistically explained (in Praśna 4. 7) as supported on that which, with unforeseen insight, was called Ātman, a Self, because I, a self, am also a part of It — that world is none other than my self.

  • ‘He who has found and has awakened to the Soul (Self) . . .
  • The world is his; indeed, he is the world itself.’
  • (Bṛih. 4. 4. 13.)

‘One should reverence the thought “I am the world-all!” (Chānd. 2. 21. 4). ‘I alone am this whole world’ (Chānd 7. 25. 1). ‘When he imagines . . . “I am this world-all,” that is his highest world. This, verily, is that form of his which is beyond desires, free from evil, without fear’ (Bṛih. 4. 3. 20-21).

Rather, instead of being identified with my consciousness, this world of sense is the product of my constructive imagination, as is evident in sleep, when one ‘himself tears it apart, himself builds it up, and dreams by his own brightness, by his own light. . . . There are no chariots there, no spans, no roads. But he projects from himself chariots, spans, roads. There are no blisses there, no pleasures, no delights. But he projects from himself blisses, pleasures, delights. There are no tanks there, no lotus-pools, no streams. But he projects from Edition: current; Page: [44] himself tanks, lotus-pools, streams. For he is a creator. . . .

  • In the state of sleep going aloft and alow,
  • A god, he makes many forms for himself.’
  • (Bṛih. 4. 3. 9, 10, 13.)

Such a theory is distinctly idealistic metaphysics.1

Here, then, is the source of that manifold diversity which has seemed to contradict the pure unity of being. It all is the thought-product of the larger real Self, apart from whom neither it nor I have any existence whatever. ‘He who knows “Let me smell this,” “Let me utter this,” “Let me hear this,” “Let me think this,” is the Self’ (Chānd. 8. 12. 4-5).

The ego does not perform those activities. ‘Assuredly, the Soul (Ātman) of one’s soul is called the Immortal Leader. As perceiver, thinker, goer, evacuator, begetter, doer, speaker, taster, smeller, seer, hearer—and he touches—the All-pervader has entered the body’ (Maitri 6. 7). The real illusion is not strictly the trick of the other, the great magician, but my own persistence in the vain belief that I and the world exist apart from, or are in any sense other than, the pure, undifferenced unity of the Self—or, according to the theory of realistic pantheism, the one world-all Brahma.2

In either case knowledge of the truth banishes the illusion and restores the identity which was only temporarily sundered by ignorance. ‘Whoever thus knows “I am Brahma!” becomes this All; even the gods have not power to prevent his becoming thus, for he becomes their self’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 10). Knowledge of the real nature of Brahma in general effects an assimilation of the knower of it. ‘Verily, Brahma is fearless. He who knows this becomes the fearless Brahma’ (Bṛih. 4. 4. 25). ‘He, verily, who knows that supreme Brahma, becomes very Brahma’ (Muṇḍ. 3. 2. 9). ‘He who recognizes that shadowless, bodiless, bloodless, pure Imperishable, arrives at the Imperishable itself. He, knowing all, becomes the All’ (Praśna 4. 10). ‘Brahma-knowers become merged in Brahma’ (Śvet. 1. 7).

In the Ātman-theory the great desideratum is union with Edition: current; Page: [45] Ātman, the inner, real, unitary Self—who in truth am I, if I but knew it and could realize it. That is ‘the Self which is free from evil, ageless, deathless, sorrowless, hungerless, thirstless, whose desire is the Real, whose conception is the Real’ (Chānd. 8. 7. 1; Maitri 7. 7). In the Brahma-theory also it is complete unqualified unity that is the ideal. ‘An ocean, a seer alone without duality, becomes he whose world is Brahma. This is a man’s highest path. . . . This is his highest bliss’ (Bṛih. 4. 3. 32). For ‘verily, a Plenum is the same as Pleasure. There is no Pleasure in the small. Only a Plenum is Pleasure.’ (Chānd. 7. 23. 1). This path, however, from the troubled consciousness with its limitations, sorrows and pains, to that state of unalloyed beatitude and unbounded bliss—

  • ‘A sharpened edge of a razor, hard to traverse,
  • A difficult path is this—poets declare!’
  • (Kaṭha 3. 14.)

‘Verily, there are just two conditions of this person: the condition of being in this world and the condition of being in the other world. There is an intermediate third condition, namely, that of being in sleep’ (Bṛih. 4. 3. 9). Going to it, as a fish goes over to the other side of a river and back, one may have an actual experience of that reality of bliss in contrast with which the waking life is but a bad dream (Bṛih. 4. 3. 18).

It is noteworthy how the dominant realistic pantheism of the Upanishads is frequently overriden by the idealistic tendency which rejects the world of the waking consciousness as the real world and which adopts the state of dreamless sleep or of vacuous meditation as grasping the absolute unity and reality. So Prajāpati described the real Self, after futile attempts to satisfy Indra with the lower conceptions such as the person who is seen in the eye and the reflected image in a vessel of water, as follows: ‘He who moves about happy in dream—he is the Self’ (Chānd. 8. 10. 1). But Indra perceived the failure on Prajāpati’s part to instruct him about a Self which is free from evil and from sorrow, for even in dreams one has most unpleasant experiences, such as being struck and cut to pieces.1

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Admitting the inadequacy of the state of dreaming sleep as furnishing a cognition of the supreme blissful Self, Prajāpati gives it as his final instruction that ‘When one is sound asleep, composed, serene, and knows no dream—that is the Self’ (Chānd. 8. 11. 1). But Indra found no satisfaction in such a Self, for in that condition a man does not really know himself so that he can say ‘This is I,’ nor does he know other things. The objection is not fairly met by Prajāpati’s reply that pleasure and pain are due to the self’s connection with the body; that the highest condition is when in sleep the serene one, rising out from this body, no longer thinks of the appendage of the body, but goes around laughing, sporting, taking delight with women or chariots or relatives. For the explanation is a relapse into the state of dreaming sleep, which, however pleasant it may be at times, had nevertheless been condemned by Prajāpati himself as faulty, because it is a conscious condition and therefore liable to all the vicissitudes of waking consciousness.

In contrast with the unsatisfactory conclusion of this dialogue, Yājñavalkya, in Bṛih. 2. 4. 14 and 4. 5. 15, gave to Maitreyī—who, like Indra, had been perplexed by the similar instruction that the highest stage of the one Self is unconscious—a more philosophical explanation of why it can not be conscious. ‘Where there is a duality, as it were, there one sees another; there one smells another; there one tastes another; there one speaks to another. . . . But where everything has become just one’s own self, then whereby and whom would one see? then whereby and whom would one smell? then whereby and to whom would one speak? then whereby and whom would one hear? then whereby and of whom would one think? then whereby and whom would one touch? then whereby and whom would one understand?’1 ‘Knowledge is only of a second.’ Consciousness means consciousness of an object; but in that consciousness where all things become one (Kaush. 3. 4), in that unbounded ocean-like pure unity of the Edition: current; Page: [47] real Self (Bṛih. 4. 3. 32), the duality and limitation of the subject-object relation is obliterated. In it, therefore, consciousness is an impossibility.

The conception of this pure unity of being and of the blissful union with self was not clearly defined and consistently held. Maitri 6. 7 suggests the reason. ‘Now, where knowledge is of a dual nature [i.e. subjective-objective], there, indeed, one hears, sees, smells, tastes, and also touches; the soul knows everything. Where knowledge is not of a dual nature, being devoid of action, cause, or effect, unspeakable, incomparable, indescribable—what is that? It is impossible to say!’ It is strictly inconceivable:—

  • ‘Wherefrom words turn back,
  • Together with the mind, not having attained—
  • The bliss of Brahma.’
  • (Tait. 2. 4.)

It may only be affirmed as approximately conceived:—

  • ‘ “This is it”—thus they recognize
  • The highest, indescribable happiness.’
  • (Kaṭha 5. 14.)

There was consequently vacillation and indefiniteness in the statements regarding it. Prajāpati, when pressed to justify it as unconsciousness, fell back upon the notion of pleasant dreams. The Taittirīya Upanishad, where by arithmetical computation that perfect bliss is declared equal to octillion blisses of the most favored man on earth, states in closing that the aspirant, having reached the ‘self which consists of bliss,’ goes up and down these worlds, eating what he will and assuming what forms he will, and sits singing the song of universal unity which begins with ‘Oh, wonderful! Oh, wonderful! Oh, wonderful!’ (Tait. 3. 10. 5).

The limitation of the not-self certainly would be absent in that plenary bliss. ‘Where one sees nothing else, hears nothing else, understands nothing else—that is a Plenum. But where one sees something else—that is the small.’ ‘Verily, a Plenum is the same as Pleasure. There is no Pleasure in the small. Only a Plenum is Pleasure’ (Chānd. 7. 23-24). One passage, Bṛih. 4. 3. 23-30 (the only one of its kind in the Upanishads), attempts, contrary to the prevailing conception of the condition of union with the Self, to make Edition: current; Page: [48] qualified provision for sense-activity by a sort of paradox, which is more intelligible in the Madhyaṁdina than in the Kaṇva recension. ‘Verily, while he does not there see, he is verily seeing, though he does not see what is [usually] to be seen; for there is no cessation of the seeing of a seer, because of his imperishability. It is not, however, a second thing, other than himself and separate, that he may see.’ Similarly he continues to smell, taste, speak, hear, think, touch, and know, though not a second thing other than himself and separate.

A sensual conception of that bliss is pictured in Bṛih. 4. 3. 21, according to which the condition of union with the Self is conscious, but void of content either subjectively or objectively referrent, a mere state of bliss. ‘As a man, when in the embrace of a beloved wife, knows nothing within or without, so this person when in the embrace of the intelligent Soul knows nothing within or without.’ In Māṇḍ. 5 that bliss is found in deep sleep as such.

The true conception of the bliss of union with the Self, then, would seem to be that it is strictly an unconscious condition; but with the attempt to conceive of that condition, which indeed was asserted to be inconceivable, recourse is had to sensual experiences and to balmy sleep.

Strictly it is the state of dreamless sleep which is taken as typifying the attainment of the real. ‘Therefore they say of him “he sleeps,” for he has gone to his own’ (Chānd. 6. 8. 1). This is true both in the Brahma theory and in the Ātman theory. ‘So, just as those who do not know the spot might go over a hid treasure of gold again and again, but not find it, even so all creatures here go to that Brahma-world [in deep sleep] day by day, but do not find it’ (Chānd. 8. 3. 2)—a doctrine alluded to in Praśna 4. 4. ‘Now, that serene one [the soul in sleep] who, rising up out of this body, reaches the highest light and appears with his own form—He is the Soul! That is the immortal, the fearless. That is Brahma. The name, verily, of that Brahma is the Real. . . . Day by day, verily, he who knows this goes to the heavenly world’ (Chānd. 8. 3. 4-5).

The pleasant dreams of sleep, rather than the hampered waking consciousness, were, according to some of the passages Edition: current; Page: [49] which have been quoted, tentatively accepted as characteristic of the unlimited Self; but, because of the fact of unpleasant dreams, they were rejected in favor of the bliss of dreamless sleep, where even the duality of subject and object that is foreign to the essential nature of the unitary Self is melted away.

But even that condition of profound sleep from which one wakes refreshed—back, however, into diversity and into the limitation of the waking consciousness—seems too near the unreality of the illusory egohood which is conscious of falsely apparent objects and subjects. In the Māṇḍukya, therefore, there is put, above the waking consciousness and the dreaming sleep and the dreamless sleep, a fourth stage. ‘Not inwardly cognitive, not outwardly cognitive, not bothwise cognitive, not a cognitive mass, not cognitive, not non-cognitive unseen, with which there can be no dealing, ungraspable, having no distinctive mark, non-thinkable, that cannot be designated, the essence of the assurance of which is the state of being one with the Self’ (Māṇḍ. 7). Another later Upanishad, the Maitri, adopts the same fourfold condition of all existence and denominates the fourth and highest condition turīya (7. 11).

Not only in sleep and in a supposititious condition beyond profound slumber does one reach that unity with the Self. He does it also in death, the consummation of unification, for then the diversity and illusoriness of sense-knowledge and separateness are overcome. ‘When this self comes to weakness and to confusedness of mind, as it were, then the breaths gather around him. He takes to himself those particles of energy and descends into the heart. When the person in the eye turns away, back [to the sun], then one becomes non-knowing of forms. “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not see.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not smell.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not taste.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not speak.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not hear.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not think.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not touch.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not know.” . . . He becomes one with intelligence’ (Bṛih. 4. 4. 1-2). Similarly in Chānd. 6. Edition: current; Page: [50] 8. 6 and 6. 15 death is only the process of absorption into the Real, into the Self. Of a dying person it is said: ‘His voice goes into his mind; his mind into his breath; his breath into heat; the heat into the highest divinity. That which is the finest essence—the whole world has that as its soul. That is Reality. That is Ātman. That art thou, Śvetaketu.’ And, it might be added, only ignorance and persistence in the thought of a separate self keep one from actually being It. Death is truly the loosing of the cords of the heart which bind one to an illusory life and to the thought of a separate self-existence.

  • ‘Gone are the fifteen parts according to their station,
  • Even all the sense-organs in their corresponding divinities!
  • One’s work and the soul that consists of understanding—
  • All become unified in the supreme Imperishable.’
  • (Muṇḍ. 3. 2. 7.)

It is evident that this pure unity of the self, the really Existent, union with which is effected in sleep and in death, is unconscious, because it is void of all limitations or distinctions whatsoever, being ‘the Person all-pervading and without any mark whatever’ (Kaṭha 6. 8).

And therein even the possible distinction that ‘this is I’ (loss of which represented a condition which seemed so abhorrent to Indra and which Prajāpati did not succeed in justifying) is impossible, just because the duality and limitations of the subject-object relation are impossible in that plenary unity. Thus, from the empirical point of view which regards the waking consciousness as the real, a man does in this way ‘go straight to destruction’; but to the philosopher, who understands the falsity of ordinary standards and the illusoriness of the ego to which men fondly cling, the loss of finite individuality in the real Self that is unlimited is the supreme achievement. This doctrine is set forth in parables from nature in the ‘That-art-thou’ section of the Chāndogya. ‘As the bees, my dear, prepare honey by collecting the essences of different trees and reducing the essence to a unity, as they are not able to discriminate “I am the essence of this tree,” “I am the essence of that tree”—even so, indeed, my dear, all creatures here, though they reach Being, know not “We Edition: current; Page: [51] have reached Being.” . . . These rivers, my dear, flow, the eastern toward the east, the western toward the west. They go just from the ocean to the ocean. They become the ocean itself. As there they know not “I am this one,” “I am that one”—even so, indeed, my dear, all creatures here, though they have come forth from Being, know not “We have come forth from Being” ’ (Chānd. 6. 9-10). It is the very consciousness of ‘this’ and of ‘I’ which is the limitation that separates one from the unlimited. And individuality and self-consciousness must be lost ere one reach that infinite Real. ‘As these flowing rivers that tend toward the ocean, on reaching the ocean, disappear, their name and form [or individuality] are destroyed, and it is called simply “the ocean”—even so of this spectator these sixteen parts that tend toward the Person, on reaching the Person, disappear, their name and form are destroyed, and it is called simply “the Person” ’ (Praśna 6. 5).

Thus the ultimate unity of reality which has been the search throughout the Upanishads is finally reached. On the epistemological basis of the common-sense realism which views all things as really existing just as they are seen to exist, and in continuation of the cosmologies of the Rig-Veda, the Upanishads started by positing various primeval entities, out of which by various processes the manifold world was produced. Then Brahma, a power such as that inherent in the ritual and sacrifice whereby rain and the forces of nature were controlled, was postulated as the one world-producer and controller. This conception of Brahma gradually developed into a monism. Simultaneously speculation regarding the nature of the unity in which the self and objects are joined developed the conception of Ātman, a great Self, after the analogy of the individual self. The Ātman-theory and the Brahma-theory became merged together in an absolute pantheism. An apparent conflict between the many and the One led to the distinction between phenomenon and noumenon. Those two under further speculation turned out to be respectively an illusory world and an unknowable reality. The theory of epistemological idealism which had been intuited previously on occasions and which had been led up to by the failure of Edition: current; Page: [52] realism, was then developed. The manifold world was seen to be the construction of the imagination, and the supreme unity was found in one’s own Self from which the ego is falsely sundered by the life of waking consciousness. That pure unity with the Real which is actually effected in sleep and in death is a blissful state of consciousness in which individuality and all distinctions are overcome.

Thus far chiefly the metaphysical doctrines of the Upanishads have been treated. There remain important ethical and practical corollaries to the main propositions here laid down, and these will be considered in the following chapters.

CHAPTER VIII: THE OUTCOME ON RELIGION AND ON THE DOCTRINE OF KARMA

In the Vedic period punctilious performance of the ritual was the one means of satisfying the gods and of obtaining salvation. In the Brahmanic period a change took place similar to that in the Greek religion. That very efficacy of the sacrifice for the appeasement of the gods whereby men had been kept in subjection, turned out to be an instrument in their hands for controlling the gods, who now became the dependents and received their sustenance from such sacrifice as men might give. In the Upanishads a still further change occurred. The development of a monistic philosophy removed altogether the necessity of believing in the various Vedic or Brahmanic gods to superintend and operate the different departments of nature or to be coerced into man’s service. The beginning of this subordination to the one world-all and of the later displacement of the gods as philosophic conceptions (although in popular religion the gods have continued to hold sway) is evidenced in the latter part of the Kena Upanishad. The first half of this Upanishad, by reason of its advanced position on the unknowability of Brahma, must belong to a late period in the Upanishadic philosophy, while the last part of it, which represents Brahma as a new and unknown Being, must belong Edition: current; Page: [53] to the period of the first speculations about that conception. There Agni (Fire) and Vāyu (Wind) discover that their power is not independent, but is subject to the will of the world-ruler Brahma. However, by their knowledge of Brahma they attained a pre-eminence over the other gods; and ‘he, verily, who knows it thus, striking off evil becomes established in the most excellent, endless, heavenly world—yea, he becomes established’ (Kena 34).

That last paragraph of the Kena states the radically new standard of religion and of ethics. No longer is worship or sacrifice or good conduct the requisite of religion in this life, or of salvation in the next. Knowledge secures the latter and disapproves of the former. The whole religious doctrine of different gods and of the necessity of sacrificing to the gods is seen to be a stupendous fraud by the man who has acquired metaphysical knowledge of the pantheistic unity of self and of the world in Brahma or Ātman. ‘This that people say, “Worship this god! Worship that god!”—one god after another—this is his creation indeed! And he himself is all the gods’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 6). ‘So whoever worships another divinity [than his Self], thinking “He is one and I another,” he knows not. He is like a sacrificial animal for the gods. Verily, indeed, as many animals would be of service to a man, even so each single person is of service to the gods. If even one animal is taken away, it is not pleasant. What, then, if many? Therefore it is not pleasing to those [gods] that men should know this [i. e. that the gods are only a phase of Brahma and that an individual man may himself become Brahma by knowing himself to be such]’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 10). Sacrifice and works of merit towards hypostatized divinities are, in the light of metaphysical knowledge, seen to be futile. On the other hand, the very same knowledge conserves all the efforts of the knower who may care to worship and to do religious acts. ‘Verily, even if one performs a great and holy work, but without knowing this [i. e. that the whole world is Brahma or the Self, and that I am Brahma or the Self], that work of his merely perishes in the end. One should worship the Self alone as his [true] world. The work of him who worships the Self alone as his [true] world does not perish’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 15).

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Thus religious piety is renounced as unnecessary, and knowledge of that fact, or metaphysical knowledge in general, replaces religiosity in worth and alone renders efficacious any religious or meritorious act which any one, for the sake of conformity to popular custom, may choose to perform. ‘If one offers the Agnihotra sacrifice without knowing this [i. e. that the cosmic process itself is a continuous Agnihotra]—that would be just as if he were to remove the live coals and pour the offering on ashes. But if one offers the Agnihotra sacrifice knowing it thus, his offering is made in all worlds, in all beings, in all selves’ (Chānd. 5. 24. 1-2). ‘This that people say, “By offering with milk for a year one escapes the second death”—one should know that this is not so, since on the very day that he makes the offering he who knows escapes the second death’ (Bṛih. 1. 5. 2).

This last quotation leads to a topic which holds an important place in the practical religion of India today, namely, the doctrine of karma (literally ‘action’), the theory that according to one’s good or bad actions in this life one passes at death into the body of a higher or a lower animal. It is noteworthy that in the Rig-Veda there is no trace of metempsychosis.1 This fact is interestingly confirmed in the Upanishads at Chānd. 5. 3, where neither Śvetaketu (who, according to Chānd. 6. 1. 2, had spent twelve years in studying the Vedas) nor his father and instructor, Gautama, had heard of the doctrine; and when they are instructed in it, it is expressly stated that the doctrine had always belonged to the Kshatriyas, the military class, and was then for the first time divulged to one of the Brahman class. In the Rig-Veda the eschatology consisted of a belief in a personal immortality in the paradise of the gods. After ‘a preliminary sign of the doctrine of metempsychosis in the Atharva-Veda,’2 the notion first makes its definite appearance in the Śatapatha Brāhmaṇa. In the Upanishads it had not yet become what it became in later times, a belief which Monier Williams Edition: current; Page: [55] has aptly characterized in the following severe statement: ‘Transmigration, or metempsychosis, is the great bugbear—the terrible nightmare and daymare—of Indian philosophers and metaphysicians. All their efforts are directed to the getting rid of this oppressive scare. The question is not, What is the truth? The one engrossing problem is, How is the man to break this iron chain of repeated existences?’1

How his doctrine of karma and reincarnation came to be so thoroughly accepted in India, is uncertain: whether from the Indigenes whom the invading Aryans found in India (as Gough conjectures2) or whether as the most plausible philosophic explanation of the phenomena of instinctive knowledge (as in Bṛih. 4. 4. 2) and of dreaming and remembrance of things not experienced in this life, as well as of sin (according to Śaṅkara on Bṛih. 4. 3. 9). (In passing be it noted that these are exactly the considerations which led philosophers like Plato, and Christian theologians like Origen and Julius Müller to the belief in an existence prior to the present life.) At any rate, the belief in a person’s renewed existence in another body after death, is present in the Upanishads, but not as a burden of despair. It is only the belief in the retributive reward of character operating with a continued existence in the locality of this world instead of in the locality of heaven or hell. ‘Accordingly, those who are of pleasant conduct here—the prospect is, indeed, that they will enter a pleasant womb, either the womb of a Brahman, or the womb of a Kshatriya, or the womb of a Vaiśya. But those who are of stinking conduct here—the prospect is, indeed, that they will enter a stinking womb, either the womb of a dog, or the womb of a swine, or the womb of an outcast’ (Chānd. 5. 10. 7).

  • ‘According unto his deeds the embodied one successively
  • Assumes forms in various conditions.
  • Coarse and fine, many in number,
  • The embodied one chooses forms according to his own qualities.
  • Edition: current; Page: [56]
  • [Each] subsequent cause of his union with them is seen to be
  • Because of the quality of his acts and of himself.’
  • (Śvet. 5. 11-12.)

The character which is thus determinative of one’s position in the next life is formed not only by action but also by knowledge. ‘Either as a worm, or as a moth, or as a fish, or as a bird, or as a snake, or as a tiger, or as a person, or as some other in this or that condition, he is born again here according to his deeds, according to his knowledge’ (Kaush. 1. 2).

  • ‘Some go into a womb
  • For the embodiment of a corporeal being.
  • Others go into a stationary thing
  • According to their deeds, according to their knowledge.’
  • (Kaṭha 5. 7.)

As in the matter of religion, so as regards this theological tenet, the Upanishads offer the philosophical knowledge which was the result of their own speculations and which was assessed at a very high value as the means of escape. ‘Now, whether they perform the cremation obsequies in the case of such a person [i.e. a person who knows] or not, they [i.e. the dead] pass over into a flame; from a flame, into the day; from the day, into the half-month of the waxing moon; from the half-month of the waxing moon, into the six months during which the sun moves northwards; from the months, into the year; from the year, into the sun; from the sun, into the moon; from the moon, into lightning. There there is a person who is non-human. He leads them on to Brahma. This is the way to the gods, the way to Brahma. They who proceed by it return not to the human condition here!’ (Chānd. 4. 15. 5-6). In Bṛih. 6. 2, where the same transmigration theory is discussed, the conclusion is that ‘those who know this [namely, the stages of transmigration]’ go to the Brahma-worlds. ‘Of these there is no return’ (Bṛih. 6. 2. 15).

There are several other passages which emphasize the efficaciousness over karma and rebirth of that knowledge, the bringing forth of which formed the travails of the Upanishads and the laborious attainment of which induced an exceeding high estimate of its value:—

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    • ‘What is soundless, touchless, formless, imperishable,
    • Likewise tasteless, constant, odorless,
    • Without beginning, without end, higher than the great, stable—
    • By discerning That, one is liberated from the mouth of death.’
    • (Kaṭha 3. 15.)
    • ‘And one’s deeds (karma) cease
    • When He is seen—both the higher and the lower.’
    • (Muṇḍ. 2. 2. 8.)
    • ‘By knowing what is therein, Brahma-knowers
    • Become merged in Brahma, intent thereon, liberated from the womb [i.e. from rebirth].’
    • (Śvet. 1. 7.)
    • ‘By knowing God there is a falling off of all fetters;
    • With distresses destroyed, there is cessation of birth and death.’
    • (Śvet. 1. 11.)

Slightly different from the theory of saṁsāra, which conceives of the round of existence as bounded within the confines of this world, there is another variety in which persons may by the good deeds of religion earn a limited amount of merit, to be enjoyed for a time in heaven, after which the inexorable law of rebirth returns them to the world:—

  • ‘Unsafe boats, however, are these sacrificial forms,
  • The eighteen, in which is expressed the lower work [i.e. the Vedas and the sciences of subsidiary rules].
  • Since doers of deeds do not understand, because of passion,
  • Therefore, when their worlds are exhausted, they sink down wretched.
  • Thinking sacrifice and merit is the chiefest thing,
  • Naught better do they know—deluded!
  • Having had enjoyment on the top of the heaven won by good works,
  • They re-enter this world, or a lower.’
  • (Muṇḍ. 1. 2. 7, 9, 10.)

‘But they who seek the Ātman by austerity, chastity, faith, and knowledge . . . they do not return’ (Praśna 1. 10).

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CHAPTER IX: THE OUTCOME ON PRACTICAL LIFE AND ON MORALS

Knowledge—not ‘much learning,’ but the understanding of metaphysical truths—was the impelling motive of the thinkers of the Upanishads. Because of the theoretical importance of knowledge in that period of speculative activity, and also because of the discrediting of the popular polytheistic religion by philosophical reasoning, there took place in India during the times of the Upanishads a movement similar to that which produced the Sophists in Greece, namely, an unsettling of the accepted ethics and a substitution of knowledge for religion and morality. Knowledge was the one object of supreme value, the irresistible means of obtaining one’s ends. This idea of the worth and efficacy of knowledge is expressed again and again throughout the Upanishads not only in connection with philosophical speculation, but also in the practical affairs of life. ‘That Udgātṛi priest who knows this—whatever desire he desires, either for himself or for the sacrificer, that he obtains by singing. This, indeed, is world-conquering’ (Bṛih. 1. 3. 28). ‘This whole world, whatever there is, is fivefold. He obtains this whole world who knows this’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 17). ‘He [Indra] is without a rival. . . . He who knows this has no rival’ (Bṛih. 1. 5. 12). ‘Whoever strives with one who knows this, dries up and finally dies’ (Bṛih. 1. 5. 21). ‘He who knows this [the etymology of Atri (eater)] becomes the eater of everything; everything becomes his food’ (Bṛih. 2. 2. 4). ‘He who knows that wonderful being as the first-born—namely, that Brahma is the Real—conquers these worlds. Would he be conquered who knows thus that great spirit as the first-born—namely, that Brahma is the Real?’ (Bṛih. 5. 4). ‘As a lump of clay would fall to pieces in striking against a solid stone, so falls to pieces he who wishes evil to one who knows this, and he, too, who injures him. Such a one is a solid stone’ (Chānd. 1. 2. 8).

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  • ‘He who knows Brahma as the real, as knowledge, as the infinite . . . ,
  • He obtains all desires.’
  • (Tait. 2. 1.)

‘He who knows that food which is established on food, becomes established. He becomes an eater of food, possessing food. He becomes great in offspring, in cattle, in the splendor of sacred knowledge, great in fame’ (Tait. 3. 7). ‘Whatever conquest is Brahma’s, whatever attainment—that conquest he conquers, that attainment he attains who knows this’ (Kaush. 1. 7). ‘Verily, indeed, if upon one who knows this both mountains should roll themselves forth—both the southern and the northern—desiring to lay him low, indeed they would not lay him low. But those who hate him and those whom he himself hates—these all die around him’ (Kaush. 2. 13). ‘He, verily, who knows that supreme Brahma . . . in his family no one ignorant of Brahma arises’ (Muṇḍ. 3. 2. 9). So frequent are the statements describing the invulnerability and omnipotence of him who is possessed of this magic talisman, that ya evaṁ veda, ‘he who knows this,’ becomes the most frequently recurring phrase in all the Upanishads.

Beside this practical value of knowledge and the speculative value, previously described, for attainment of the ideal unity with the Real,1 knowledge also had a marked ethical value. Edition: current; Page: [60] The possessor of knowledge is freed even now from all his evil deeds as well as from the later metempsychosical results of doing any deeds at all. ‘Verily, indeed, even if they lay very much [wood] on a fire, it burns it all. Even so one who knows this, although he commits very much evil, consumes it all and becomes clean and pure, ageless and immortal’ (Bṛih. 5. 14. 8). ‘Brahma is lightning (vidyut), they say, because of unloosing (vidāna). Lightning unlooses him from evil who knows this, that Brahma is lightning’ (Bṛih. 5. 7).

  • ‘The plunderer of gold, the liquor-drinker,
  • The invader of a teacher’s bed, the Brahman-killer—
  • These four sink downward in the scale,
  • And, fifth, he who consorts with them.

But he who knows these five fires [i.e. the five-fire doctrine, pañcāgnividyā] thus, is not stained with evil, even though consorting with those people. He becomes pure, clean, possessor of a pure world, who knows this—yea, he who knows this’ (Chānd. 5. 10. 9-10). ‘As a rush-reed laid on a fire would be burned up, even so are burned up all the evils of him who offers Agnihotra sacrifice knowing it thus’ (Chānd. 5. 24. 3). ‘He who understands me [Indra is the speaker, representing Ātman]—by no deed whatsoever of his is his world injured, not by stealing, not by killing an embryo, not by the murder of his mother, not by the murder of his father; if he has done any evil, the dark color departs not from his face’ (Kaush. 3. 1). This ethical theory has been compared with the Socratic doctrine of the identity of knowledge and virtue. There is a wide difference, however, between the Upanishadic theory and the theory of the Greek sages that the man who has knowledge should thereby become virtuous in character, or that the result of teaching should be a virtuous life. Here the possession of some metaphysical knowledge actually cancels all past sins and even permits the knower unblushingly to continue in ‘what seems to be much evil,’ with perfect impunity, although such acts are heinous crimes and are disastrous in their effect for others who lack that kind of knowledge.

But this unbridled licentiousness of the earlier Upanishads could not long continue. It probably went to excess, for in Edition: current; Page: [61] the middle of the period it is sternly denounced. Good conduct was declared to be an equal requisite with knowledge.

    • ‘He who has not understanding,
    • Who is unmindful and ever impure,
    • Reaches not the goal,
    • But goes on to transmigration.
    • He, however, who has understanding,
    • Who is mindful and ever pure,
    • Reaches the goal
    • From which he is born no more.’
    • (Kaṭha 3. 7-8.)
    • ‘Not he who has not ceased from bad conduct . . .
    • Can obtain Him by intelligence.’
    • (Kaṭha 2. 24.)

The earlier conception that the knower was able to continue in evil unharmed was true only so far as it expressed the idea that knowledge exempts from evil.

  • ‘One should be familiar with it. By knowing it,
  • One is not stained by evil action.’
  • (Bṛih. 4. 4. 23.)

‘As water adheres not to the leaf of a lotus-flower, so evil action adheres not to him who knows this [that the Self is Brahma]’ (Chānd. 4. 14. 3). This thought recurs at Maitri 3. 2, and, with another simile, at Praśna 5. 5: ‘As a snake is freed from its skin, even so, verily, is he [who knows this] freed from sin.’ Still another simile is used to drive home this same thought:—

  • ‘As to a mountain that’s enflamed
  • Deer and birds do not resort—
  • So, with the Brahma-knowers, faults
  • Do never any shelter find.’
  • (Maitri 6. 18.)1

The consistent pantheistic conception, however, of the relation of knowledge and moral evil is that knowledge exempts from both good and evil, and elevates the knower altogether from the region of moral distinctions to the higher one where they are not operative. ‘Such a one, verily, the thought does not torment: “Why have I not done the good? Why have I done the evil?” He who knows this, saves himself from Edition: current; Page: [62] these [thoughts]. For truly, from both of these he saves himself—he who knows this!’ (Tait. 2. 9). ‘Him [who knows this] these two do not overcome—neither the thought “Hence I did wrong,” nor the thought “Hence I did right.” Verily he overcomes them both. What he has done and what he has not done do not affect him’ (Bṛih. 4. 4. 22).

  • ‘When a seer sees the brilliant
  • Maker, Potentate, Person, the Brahma-source,
  • Then, being a knower, shaking off good and evil,
  • Stainless, he attains supreme identity [with Him].’
  • (Muṇḍ. 3. 1. 3.)

For this emancipation, an emancipation from the unreal and an entrance into the real, the reason is that to the knower good and evil are conceptions of partial knowledge which can no longer hold in the light of full knowledge. They are only verbal distinctions. ‘Verily, if there were no speech, neither right nor wrong would be known, neither true nor false, neither good nor bad, neither pleasant nor unpleasant. Speech, indeed, makes all this known’ (Chānd. 7. 2. 1).

The world of reality, the Brahma-world to which the true knower is admitted, is devoid of all distinctions, pleasant and unpleasant, which are empirically real, but transcendentally unreal. Accordingly that world is free also from the ethical distinction of good and evil. ‘Over that bridge there cross neither day, nor night, nor old age, nor death, nor sorrow, nor well-doing, nor evil-doing. All evils turn back therefrom, for that Brahma-world is freed from evil’ (Chānd. 8. 4. 1-2). ‘He goes to the world that is without heat, without cold. Therein he dwells eternal years’ (Bṛih. 5. 10).

  • ‘When there is no darkness, then there is no day or night,
  • Nor being, nor non-being, only the Kindly One alone.’
  • (Śvet. 4. 18.)

‘He, . . . a knower of Brahma, unto Brahma goes on. . . . He comes to the river Vijarā (‘Ageless’). This he crosses with his mind alone. There he shakes off his good deeds and his evil deeds. His dear relatives succeed to the good deeds; those not dear, to the evil deeds. Then, just as one driving a chariot looks down upon the two chariot-wheels [which in their Edition: current; Page: [63] revolutions do not touch him], thus he looks down upon day and night; thus upon good deeds and evil deeds, and upon all the pairs of opposites. This one, devoid of good deeds, devoid of evil deeds, a knower of Brahma, unto very Brahma goes on’ (Kaush. 1. 4).

The same ethical position is held in the Ātman-theory. The world-ground, the great Ātman, in itself is—

    • ‘Apart from the right and apart from the unright,
    • Apart from both what has been done and what has not been done here,
    • Apart from what has been and what is to be.’
    • (Kaṭha 2. 14.)
    • ‘As the sun, the eye of the whole world,
    • Is not sullied by the external faults of the eyes,
    • So the one Inner Soul of all things
    • Is not sullied by the evil in the world, being external to it.’
    • (Kaṭha 5. 11.)
    • ‘The bright, the bodiless, the scatheless,
    • The sinewless, the pure, unpierced by evil.’
    • (Īśā 8.)

This idea that the Ātman-world is ‘free from evil or sin, free from impurity, blameless, spotless,’ which is expressed in numerous epithets and detached phrases, also receives an etymological justification. ‘In the beginning this world was Soul (Ātman) alone in the form of a Person (puruṣa). . . . Since before (pūrva) all this world he burned up (√uṣ) all evils, therefore he is a person (pur-uṣ-a)’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 1).1

The Ātman thus being void of all ethical distinctions, the Ātman-knower who by his knowledge becomes Ātman likewise transcends them in his union with Him. ‘As a man when in the embrace of a beloved wife knows nothing within or without, so this person when in the embrace of the intelligent Soul knows nothing within or without. Verily, that is his [true] form. . . . There a father becomes not a father; a mother, not a mother; the worlds, not the worlds; the gods, not the gods; the Vedas, not the Vedas; a thief, not a thief. Edition: current; Page: [64] . . . He is not followed by good, he is not followed by evil, for then he has passed beyond all sorrows of the heart’ (Bṛih. 4. 3. 21-22).1

The ethical theory thus far presented, which was based on the epistemological realism of the Upanishads, did not, like the theory of reality, suffer any change by the transition to idealism, but rather was confirmed by it. The illusion of an external world and of an external Soul that needs to be reached by effort of will served only to prove illusory all activity whatever, even the good and evil deeds making up such activity. Sleep is the nearest approach to real existence, an individual in sleep only ‘appearing to think, appearing to move about’ (Bṛih. 4. 3. 7). ‘In this state of sleep, having traveled around and seen good and bad, he hastens again, according to the entrance and place of origin, back to the state of waking. Whatever he sees there [i.e. in dreaming sleep], he is not followed by it, for this person is without attachments’ (Bṛih. 4. 3. 16). He there actually reaches the Real and therefore is not affected by the ethical distinctions which are alien to its nature.2 ‘Now, when one is thus sound asleep, composed, serene, he knows no dream . . . ; so no evil touches him, for then he has reached the Bright Power’ (Chānd. 8. 6. 3).

So the final goal of metaphysical speculation and the practical attainment of supreme and imperishable value was the Soul, the larger Soul which was the ground of the individual soul and of all existence. ‘That self is dearer than a son, is dearer than wealth, is dearer than all else, since this self is nearer’ (Bṛih. 1. 4. 8). ‘He should be searched out, Him one should desire to understand’ (Chānd. 8. 7. 1). Edition: current; Page: [65] However beautiful such a doctrine was in theory, it might very easily be misunderstood and misapplied in practice, as indeed it was by Virocana, who is said to have lived as a pupil with Prajāpati for thirty-two years. After receiving instruction about ‘the Self which is free from evil, ageless, deathless, sorrowless, hungerless, thirstless, whose desire is the Real, whose conception is the Real,’ he went forth and declared the following doctrine: ‘Oneself is to be made happy here on earth. Oneself is to be waited upon. He who makes merely himself happy here on earth, who waits upon himself, obtains both worlds, this world and the yonder.’ Such utter selfishness is forthwith condemned by the author, who comments: ‘Therefore even now here on earth they say of one who is not a giver, who is not a believer, who is not a sacrificer, “Oh! devilish!” for such is the doctrine of the devils.’ And Prajāpati also regretfully declared: ‘Whosoever shall have such a mystic doctrine—be they gods or be they devils—shall perish’ (Chānd. 8. 7-8).

The same mistaken ethical theory might be gathered from Yājñavalkya’s advice to Maitreyī, Bṛih. 2. 4 and 4. 5, if Ātman were translated by ‘self’ or ‘ego.’ ‘Not for love of the wife is a wife dear, but for love of the Soul a wife is dear.’ Similarly not for love of sons, wealth, the Brahman class, the Kshatriya class, the worlds, the gods, things, any thing, are they dear, but for love of the Soul they are dear.

This is not the modern psychological doctrine that we do not desire anything in itself, but only the pleasantness or self-advantage which the possession of that thing yields to us; nor is Yājñavalkya advocating the utilitarian doctrine that all love and apparent altruism are and should be self-love and selfishness. The central idea is rather that all those objects are not separate entities, in themselves of value to us; but that they all are phases of the world-self and that in the common, every-day experience of having affection for others we find illustrated the great doctrine of the individual self finding his selfhood grounded in, and reaching out towards, that larger Self which embraces all individuals and all things.

With this liberal interpretation, Yājñavalkya’s advice to Maitreyī, so far as it contains ethical theory, represents the high-water mark in the Upanishads. The practical ethics are Edition: current; Page: [66] certainly not as high. The general teaching is that already presented, namely, that moral distinctions do not obtain for the man who has metaphysical knowledge. This is the influence effected on the Bhagavad-Gītā, the popular book of religious meditation, in which (at 2. 19) Kṛishna, the divine incarnation, quells the scruples of Arjuna over the murdering of his enemies by this Upanishadic assurance:—

  • ‘If the slayer think to slay,
  • If the slain think himself slain,
  • Both these understand not.
  • This one slays not, nor is slain.’
  • (Kaṭha 2. 19.)

CHAPTER X: THE ARTIFICIAL METHOD OF UNITY IN RENUNCIATION AND IN YOGA

As the absolute unity of the Ātman was the final goal of speculative thought, so absolute unity with the Ātman was regarded as the supreme actual attainment. Though this is theoretically accomplishable by mere metaphysical knowledge, it is as a matter of fact accomplished only after death or during sleep. Therefore for the period while one is still alive and not sleeping some other method than knowledge must be provided.

That was found to be what in Muṇḍ. 3. 2. 1 was joined with knowledge as the means of escaping transmigration:—

  • ‘They who, being without desire, worship the Person
  • And are wise, pass beyond the seed [of rebirth] here.’

After knowledge has informed a person that he is Brahma or Ātman, he should strictly have no more desires, for ‘he who has found and has awakened to the Soul . . . the world is his’ (Bṛih. 4. 4. 13).

  • ‘If a person knew the Soul
  • With the thought “I am He!”
  • With what desire, for love of what
  • Would he cling unto the body?’
  • (Bṛih. 4. 4. 12.)

‘Verily, because they knew this, the ancients desired not Edition: current; Page: [67] offspring, saying: “What shall we do with offspring, we whose is this Soul, this home?” They, verily, rising above the desire for sons and the desire for wealth and the desire for worlds, lived the life of a mendicant’ (Bṛih. 4. 4. 22; cf. 3. 5. 1).

In actual experience, however, desires do still continue and harass one. But by harboring desires and resorting to activity to satisfy them, one is only admitting and emphasizing to the mind a lack or limitation, and thereby preventing assimilation to and union with the desireless, blissful plenum of the Soul. The entertaining of any desires whatsoever, and the resulting activity, are conditions which from the point of view of knowledge are sheer ignorance; these react in dulling the understanding (cf. Muṇḍ. 1. 2. 9), blind one to the limitation of existence in the world and to the series of rebirths, and maintain the person’s false separation from the real Brahma or Ātman:—

  • ‘He who in fancy forms desires,
  • Because of his desires is born [again] here and there.’
  • (Muṇḍ. 3. 2. 2.)

The psychology and praxis of this doctrine are set forth in a notable passage, Bṛih. 4. 4. 5-7. ‘A person is made of desires only. As is his desire, such is his resolve; as is his resolve, such the action he performs; what action (karma) he performs, that he procures for himself. On this point there is this verse:—

  • Where one’s mind is attached—the inner self
  • Goes thereto with action, being attached to it alone.
  • Obtaining the end of his action,
  • Whatever he does in this world,
  • He comes again from that world
  • To this world of action.

So the man who desires. Now the man who does not desire. He who is without desire, who is freed from desire, whose desire is satisfied, whose desire is the Soul—his breaths do not depart. Being very Brahma, he goes to Brahma. On this point there is this verse:—

  • When are liberated all
  • The desires that lodge in one’s heart,
  • Edition: current; Page: [68]
  • Then a mortal becomes immortal!
  • Therein he reaches Brahma!’1

But if the metaphysical knowledge of the essential oneness of the individual soul (ātman) and the universal Soul (Ātman) did not procure the blissful union with that Soul, neither does this theory of the avoidance of limiting desires; for they inevitably rise up in the ordinary life of activity. The final solution of the practical problem which the Upanishads offer, namely Yoga, is the outcome of that conception of strict unity which started the speculations of the Upanishads and which urged them on from cosmology to monism, from monism to pantheism, and from an external to an internal unity. That unity—under which it is the aim of every philosophy which has ever existed rationally to bring experience—the early Indian thinkers found in Brahma, and then in the objective Soul (Ātman), and then in one’s own soul, wherein the manifoldness of thought itself and the limitation of the distinctions of object and subject and all sorrows of the heart are merged into an undifferentiated unitary blissful plenum. ‘To the unity of the One goes he who knows this [i. e. that all is one]. The precept for effecting this [unity] is this: restraint of the breath, withdrawal of the senses [from objects], meditation, concentration, contemplation, absorption’ (Maitri 6. 17, 18). This is Yoga (from the root yuj, meaning to ‘join,’ ‘yoke,’ ‘harness’), a harnessing of the senses and mind from the falsely manifold objects and thoughts, and at the same time a union with the unitary blissful Self.

  • ‘When cease the five
  • [Sense-]knowledges, together with the mind,
  • And the intellect stirs not—
  • That, they say, is the highest course.’
  • (Kaṭha 6. 10; Maitri 6. 30.)

The practical application, the ethics, and the offers of this Edition: current; Page: [69] theory of the union with the Self are set forth in Maitri 6. 20. According to that—

  • ‘By tranquillity of thought
  • Deeds, good and evil, one destroys!
  • With soul serene, stayed on the Soul,
  • Delight eternal one enjoys!’

The final exhortation of the Upanishads is well expressed in the following words connected with the Brahma-theory:—

  • ‘Taking as a bow the great weapon of the Upanishad,
  • One should put upon it an arrow sharpened by meditation.
  • Stretching it with a thought directed to the essence of That,
  • Penetrate that Imperishable as the mark, my friend.
  • The mystic syllable Om1 is the bow. The arrow is the soul.
  • Brahma is said to be the mark.
  • By the undistracted man is It to be penetrated.
  • One should come to be in It, as the arrow [in the mark].’
  • (Muṇḍ. 2. 2. 3-4.)

CHAPTER XI: CONCLUDING ESTIMATE

Such is the philosophy of the Upanishads in what may very probably have been its order of development. Many tendencies made up the process; and perhaps centuries elapsed between the first and last of the speculations recorded, from the Bṛihad-Āraṇyaka and the Chāndogya to the Maitri. The thinkers were earnest in their search for truth, and they unhesitatingly abandoned conclusions which had been reached, when in the light of further reasonings and new considerations they were proved inadequate. The changes from the first realistic materialism to the final speculative idealism form an interesting chapter in the history of philosophy. Their intuitions of Edition: current; Page: [70] deep truths are subtile with the directness and subtlety of new seekers after truth. In a few passages the Upanishads are sublime in their conception of the Infinite and of God, but more often they are puerile and groveling in trivialities and superstitions. As Hegel, a keen appreciator and thorough student of the history of philosophy, estimated it, ‘If we wish to get the so-called pantheism in its poetic, most elevated, and, if one will, its coarsest form, we must look for it in the Eastern poets; and the largest expositions of it are found among the Indians.’

As it was suggested before, so it must be emphasized again that, although at first the order of exposition here followed was in all probability the historical order in the progress of thought in the early Hindu philosophy, yet there are not the chronological data in the Upanishads upon which an unquestioned order can be maintained throughout. The Bṛihad-Āraṇyaka, Chāndogya, Taittirīya, Aitareya, Kaushītaki and Kena 14-34, from their structure and literary characteristics, as well as from their contents, are quite certainly assigned to the earlier group of the Upanishads. But even in them there is a variety of philosophical doctrines which are not in the same stage of development. The heterogeneity and unordered arrangement and even contradictions of the material make it difficult, indeed impossible, to set forth in systematic exposition a single system of philosophy. The purpose has been, therefore, to discern the different tendencies that are undoubtedly present in the philosophy of the Upanishads and to present them in what seems to be the most probable order of development. For the purposes of exposition there have been followed out and connected with each other certain lines of thought which in the actual development of the philosophy could hardly have been as independent as they are here set forth.

The thought of any people and of any generation is exceedingly complex, consciously or unconsciously containing certain elements from the past, which are being gradually discarded, and also certain presentiments of truth which are only later fully recognized. Yet in it all there is a dominant tendency which may readily be discerned. So in the Upanishadic period there were mythical cosmologies inherited and accepted, whose influence Edition: current; Page: [71] continued long after they had logically been superseded by more philosophical theories. In the main, however, there was an appreciation of idealism. This, having seen in the psychic self the essence of the whole world, and having identified it with Brahma, reacted against the realistic philosophy which had produced the concept of Brahma; and then it carried the Ātman, or the purely psychical, element over into the extreme of philosophical idealism.

Pantheism it may, in general, be called; for, although very different types of philosophy have been shown to be represented in the Upanishads, pantheism is their most prevalent type and the one which has constituted their chief heritage. Still, even as pantheism, it is hardly the pantheism of the West, nor is it the monism that is based upon science. It is like the simple intuition of the early Greek philosopher Xenophanes, who (after a prior course of cosmological theorizings similar to those in the Upanishads) ‘looked up into the expanse of heaven and declared, “The One is God.” ’ (Aristotle’s Metaphysics, 1. 5.) Can such faith in such form, although it has laid hold of the profound truths of ultimate unity and spirituality, be expected to furnish the highly inspiring religion of progress and the elaborately articulated philosophy, correlated with science, which modern India demands?

Before that question can be answered, it will be necessary to find out exactly what the revered Upanishads do actually say. Sanskritists, historians, philosophers, religionists—all who are interested in India’s past and concerned about India’s future may find here something of what each is already seeking in his separate line. In particular, there will be found by the sympathetic reader throughout these thirteen principal Upanishads the records of that eager quest which India has been pursuing through the centuries, which is tersely expressed in the Bṛihad-Āraṇyaka Upanishad in its first division (at 1. 3. 28):—

  • ‘From the unreal lead me to the real.
  • From darkness lead me to light.
  • From death lead me to immortality.’

The Upanishads have indubitably exercised, and in the revival of Sanskrit learning and of the Indian national consciousness Edition: current; Page: [72] will continue to exercise, a considerable influence1 on the religion and philosophy of India. To present their actual contents by a faithful philological translation, and to furnish a clue to their unsystematic expositions by a brief outline of the development of their philosophical concepts, is one of the needs of the time and has been the aim in the preparation of this volume.

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BṚIHAD-ĀRAṆYAKA UPANISHAD

FIRST ADHYĀYA

First Brāhmaṇa1

The world as a sacrificial horse2

1. Om! Verily, the dawn is the head of the sacrificial horse; the sun, his eye; the wind, his breath; universal fire (Agni Vaiśvānara), his open mouth. The year is the body (ātman) of the sacrificial horse; the sky, his back; the atmosphere, his belly; the earth, the under part of his belly; the quarters, his flanks; the intermediate quarters, his ribs; the seasons, his limbs; the months and half-months, his joints; days and nights, his feet; the stars, his bones; the clouds, his flesh. Sand is the food in his stomach; rivers are his entrails. His liver and lungs are the mountains; plants and trees, his hair. The orient is his fore part; the occident, his hind part. When he yawns, then it lightens. When he shakes himself, then it thunders. When he urinates, then it rains. Voice, indeed, is his voice.

2. Verily, the day arose for the horse as the sacrificial vessel which stands before. Its place is the eastern sea.

Verily, the night arose for him as the sacrificial vessel which stands behind. Its place is the western sea. Verily, these two arose on both sides of the horse as the two sacrificial vessels.3

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Becoming a steed, he carried the gods; a stallion, the Gandharvas; a courser, the demons; a horse, men.1 The sea, indeed, is his relative. The sea is his place.

Second Brāhmaṇa2

The creation of the world, leading up to the institution of the horse-sacrifice

1. In the beginning nothing whatsoever was here. This [world] was covered over with death, with hunger—for hunger is death.

Then he made up his mind (manas): ‘Would that I had a self!’3

So he went on (acarat) praising (arcan). From him, while he was praising, water was produced. ‘Verily, while I was praising, I had pleasure (ka)!’ thought he. This, indeed, is the arka-nature of what pertains to brightness (arkya). Verily, there is pleasure for him who knows thus that arka-nature of what pertains to brightness.

2. The water, verily, was brightness.

That which was the froth of the water became solidified. That became the earth.

On it he [i.e. Death] tortured himself (√śram). When he had tortured himself and practised austerity, his heat (tejas) and essence (rasa) turned into fire.

3. He divided himself (ātmānam) threefold: [fire (agni) one third], the sun (āditya) one third, wind (vāyu) one third. He also is Life (prāṇa) divided threefold.

The eastern direction is his head. Yonder one and yonder one4 are the fore quarters. Likewise the western direction is his tail. Yonder one and yonder one5 are the hind quarters. South and north are the flanks. The sky is the back. The atmosphere is the belly. This [earth] is the chest. He stands firm in the waters. He who knows this, stands firm wherever he goes.

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4. He desired: ‘Would that a second self of me were produced!’ He—death, hunger—by mind copulated with speech (vāc). That which was the semen, became the year. Previous to that there was no year. He bore him for a time as long as a year. After that long time he brought him forth. When he was born, Death opened his mouth on him. He cried ‘bhāṇ!’ That, indeed, became speech.

5. He bethought himself: ‘Verily, if I shall intend against him, I shall make the less food for myself.’ With that speech, with that self he brought forth this whole world, whatsoever exists here: the Hymns (ṛc) [i.e. the Rig-Veda], the Formulas (yajus) [i.e. the Yajur-Veda], the Chants (sāman) [i.e. the Sāma-Veda], meters, sacrifices, men, cattle.

Whatever he brought forth, that he began to eat. Verily, he eats (√ad) everything: that is the aditi-nature of Aditi (the Infinite). He who knows thus the aditi-nature of Aditi, becomes an eater of everything here; everything becomes food for him.

6. He desired: ‘Let me sacrifice further with a greater sacrifice (yajña)!’ He tortured himself. He practised austerity. When he had tortured himself and practised austerity, glory and vigor went forth. The glory and vigor, verily, are the vital breaths. So when the vital breaths departed, his body began to swell. His mind, indeed, was in his body (śarīra).

7. He desired: ‘Would that this [body] of mine were fit for sacrifice! Would that by it I had a self (ātmanvin)!’ Thereupon it became a horse (aśva), because it swelled (aśvat). ‘It has become fit for sacrifice (medhya)!’ thought he. Therefore the horse-sacrifice is called Aśva-medha. He, verily, knows the Aśva-medha, who knows it thus.

He kept him [i.e. the horse] in mind without confining him.1 After a year he sacrificed him for himself. [Other] animals he delivered over to the divinities. Therefore men sacrifice the victim which is consecrated to Prajāpati as though offered unto all the gods.

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Verily, that [sun] which gives forth heat is the Aśva-medha. The year is its embodiment (ātman).

This [earthly] fire is the arka.1 The worlds are its embodiments. These are two, the arka sacrificial fire and the Aśvamedha sacrifice. Yet again they are one divinity, even Death. He [who knows this] wards off death again, death obtains him not, death becomes his body (ātman), he becomes one of these deities.

Third Brāhmaṇa

The superiority of breath among the bodily functions

1. The gods (deva) and the devils (asura) were the twofold offspring of Prajāpati. Of these the gods were the younger, the devils the older. They were struggling with each other for these worlds.

The gods said: ‘Come, let us overcome the devils at the sacrifice with the Udgītha.’2

2. They said to Speech: ‘Sing for us the Udgītha.’

‘So be it,’ said Speech, and sang for them. Whatever pleasure there is in speech, that it sang for the gods; whatever good one speaks, that for itself.

They [i.e. the devils] knew: ‘Verily, by this singer they will overcome us.’ They rushed upon it and pierced it with evil. That evil was the improper thing that one speaks. That was the evil.

3. Then they [i.e. the gods] said to the In-breath (prāṇa): ‘Sing for us the Udgītha.’

‘So be it,’ said the In-breath, and sang for them. Whatever pleasure there is in the in-breath, that it sang for the gods; whatever good one breathes in, that for itself.

They [i.e. the devils] knew: ‘Verily, by this singer they will overcome us.’ They rushed upon it and pierced it with evil. That evil was the improper thing that one speaks. That was the evil.

4. Then they [i.e. the gods] said to the Eye: ‘Sing for us the Udgītha.’

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‘So be it,’ said the Eye, and sang for them. Whatever pleasure there is in the eye, that it sang for the gods; whatever good one sees, that for itself.

They [i.e. the devils] knew: ‘Verily, by this singer they will overcome us.’ They rushed upon it and pierced it with evil. That evil was the improper thing that one sees. This, truly, was that evil.

5. Then they [i.e. the gods] said to the Ear: ‘Sing for us the Udgītha.’

‘So be it,’ said the Ear, and sang for them. Whatever pleasure there is in the ear, that it sang for the gods; whatever good one hears, that for itself.

They [i.e. the devils] knew: ‘Verily, by this singer they will overcome us.’ They rushed upon it and pierced it with evil. That evil was the improper thing that one hears. This, truly, was that evil.

6. Then they [i.e. the gods] said to the Mind: ‘Sing for us the Udgītha.’

‘So be it,’ said the Mind, and sang for them. Whatever pleasure there is in the mind, that it sang for the gods; whatever good one imagines, that for itself.

They [i.e. the devils] knew: ‘Verily, by this singer they will overcome us.’ They rushed upon him and pierced him with evil. That evil was the improper thing that one imagines. This, truly, was that evil.

And thus they let out upon these divinities with evil, they pierced them with evil.

7. Then they [i.e. the gods] said to this Breath in the mouth: ‘Sing for us the Udgītha.’

‘So be it,’ said this Breath, and sang for them.

They [i.e. the devils] knew: ‘Verily, by this singer they will overcome us.’ They rushed upon him and desired to pierce him with evil. As a clod of earth would be scattered by striking on a stone, even so they were scattered in all directions and perished. Therefore the gods increased, the demons became inferior. He increases with himself, a hateful enemy becomes inferior for him who knows this.

8. Then they said, ‘What, pray, has become of him who stuck to us thus?’ ‘This one here (ayam) is within the mouth Edition: current; Page: [78] (asya)!’ He is called Ayāsya Āṅgirasa, for he is the essence (rasa) of the limbs (aṅga).

9. Verily, that divinity is Dūr by name, for death is far (dūram) from it. From him who knows this, death is far.

10. Verily, that divinity having struck off the evil of these divinities, even death, made this go to where is the end of the quarters of heaven. There it set down their evils. Therefore one should not go to [foreign] people, one should not go to the end [of the earth], lest he fall in with evil, with death.

11. Verily, that divinity by striking off the evil, the death, of those divinities carried them beyond death.

12. Verily, it carried Speech over as the first. When that was freed from death, it became fire. This fire, when it has crossed beyond death, shines forth.

13. Likewise it carried Smell across. When that was freed from death, it became wind. This wind, when it has crossed beyond death, purifies.

14. Likewise it carried the Eye across. When that was freed from death, it became the sun. That sun, when it has crossed beyond death, glows.

15. Likewise it carried the Ear across. When that was freed from death, it became the quarters of heaven. These quarters of heaven have crossed beyond death.

16. Likewise it carried the Mind across. When that was freed from death, it became the moon. That moon, when it has crossed beyond death, shines.

Thus, verily, that divinity carries beyond death him who knows this.

17. Then it [i.e. breath] sang out food for itself, for whatever food is eaten is eaten by it. Hereon one is established.

18. Those gods said: ‘Of such extent, verily, is this universe as food. You have sung it into your own possession. Give us an after-share in this food.’

‘As such, verily, do ye enter into me.’

‘So be it.’ They entered into him from all sides. Therefore whatever food one eats by this breath, these are satisfied by it. Thus, verily, his people come to him, he becomes the supporter of his people, their chief, foremost leader, an eater of food, an overlord—he who knows this. And whoever Edition: current; Page: [79] among his people desires to be the equal of him who has this knowledge suffices not for his dependents. But whoever follows after him and whoever, following after him, desires to support his dependents, he truly suffices for his dependents.

19. He is Ayāsya Āṅgirasa, for he is the essence (rasa) of the limbs (aṅga). Verily, breath is the essence of the limbs, for verily breath is the essence of the limbs. Therefore from whatever limb the breath departs, that indeed dries up, for it is verily the essence of the limbs.

20. And also it is Bṛihaspati. The Bṛihatī1 is speech. He is her lord (pati), and is therefore Bṛihaspati.

21. And it is also Brahmaṇaspati. Prayer (brahman),2 verily, is speech. He is her lord (pati), and is therefore Brahmaṇaspati.

A glorification of the Chant as breath

22. And it is also the Sāma-Veda. The Chant (sāman), verily, is speech. It is (she) and ama (he). That is the origin of the word sāman.

Or because it is equal (sama) to a gnat, equal to a fly, equal to an elephant, equal to these three worlds, equal to this universe, therefore, indeed, it is the Sāma-Veda. He obtains intimate union with the Sāman, he wins its world who knows thus that Sāman.

23. And it is also the Udgītha. The breath verily is up (ut), for by breath this whole world is upheld (ut-tabdha). Song (gītha), verily, is speech; ut and gītha—that is Udgītha.

24. As also Brahmadatta Caikitāneya, while partaking of King [Soma], said: ‘Let this king cause this man’s3 head to fall off, if Ayāsya Āṅgirasa sang the Udgītha with any other means than that, for,’ said he, ‘only with speech and with breath did he sing the Udgītha.’

25. He who knows the property of that Sāman has that property. Its property, truly, is tone. Therefore let him who is about to perform the duties of an Ṛitvij priest desire a good Edition: current; Page: [80] tone in his voice. Being possessed of such a voice, let him perform the duties of the Ṛitvij priest. Therefore people desire to see at the sacrifice one who has a good tone, as being one who has a possession. He has a possession who knows thus the property of the Sāman.

26. He who knows the gold of that Sāman comes to have gold. The tone (svara), verily, is its gold. He comes to have gold who knows thus that gold of the Sāman.

27. He who knows the support of that Sāman is indeed supported. Voice, verily, is its support, for when supported on voice the breath sings. But some say it is supported on food.

Prayers to accompany an intelligent performance of the Chant

28. Now next, the praying of the purificatory formulas (pavamāna).—

The Prastotṛi priest (Praiser), verily, begins to praise with the Chant (sāman). When he begins to praise, then let [the sacrificer] mutter the following:—

  • ‘From the unreal (asat) lead me to the real (sat)!
  • From darkness lead me to light!
  • From death lead me to immortality!’

When he says ‘From the unreal lead me to the real,’ the unreal, verily, is death, the real is immortality. ‘From death lead me to immortality. Make me immortal’—that is what he says.

‘From darkness lead me to light’—the darkness, verily, is death, the light is immortality. ‘From death lead me to immortality. Make me immortal’—that is what he says.

‘From death lead me to immortality’—there is nothing there that seems obscure.

Now whatever other verses there are of a hymn of praise (stotra), in them one may win food for himself by singing. And, therefore, in them he should choose a boon, whatever desire he may desire. That Udgātṛi priest who knows this—whatever desire he desires, either for himself or for the sacrificer, that he obtains by singing. This, indeed, is world-conquering. There is no prospect of his being without a world who knows thus this Sāman.

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Fourth Brāhmaṇa

The creation of the manifold world from the unitary Soul

1. In the beginning this world was Soul (Ātman) alone in the form of a Person. Looking around, he saw nothing else than himself. He said first: ‘I am.’ Thence arose the name ‘I.’ Therefore even today, when one is addressed, he says first just ‘It is I’ and then speaks whatever name he has. Since before (pūrva) all this world he burned up (√uṣ) all evils, therefore he is a person (pur-uṣ-a). He who knows this, verily, burns up him who desires to be ahead of him.

2. He was afraid. Therefore one who is alone is afraid. This one then thought to himself: ‘Since there is nothing else than myself, of what am I afraid?’ Thereupon, verily, his fear departed, for of what should he have been afraid? Assuredly it is from a second that fear arises.

3. Verily, he had no delight. Therefore one alone has no delight. He desired a second. He was, indeed, as large as a woman and a man closely embraced. He caused that self to fall (√pat) into two pieces. Therefrom arose a husband (pati) and a wife (patnī). Therefore this [is true]: ‘Oneself (sva)1 is like a half-fragment,’ as Yājñavalkya used to say. Therefore this space is filled by a wife. He copulated with her. Therefrom human beings were produced.

4. And she then bethought herself: ‘How now does he copulate with me after he has produced me just from himself? Come, let me hide myself.’ She became a cow. He became a bull. With her he did indeed copulate. Then cattle were born. She became a mare, he a stallion. She became a female ass, he a male ass; with her he copulated, of a truth. Thence were born solid-hoofed animals. She became a she-goat, he a he-goat; she a ewe, he a ram. With her he did verily copulate. Therefrom were born goats and sheep. Thus, indeed, he created all, whatever pairs there are, even down to the ants.

5. He knew: ‘I, indeed, am this creation, for I emitted it all from myself.’ Thence arose creation. Verily, he who has this knowledge comes to be in that creation of his.

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6. Then he rubbed thus.1 From his mouth as the fire-hole (yoni) and from his hands he created fire (agni). Both these [i.e. the hands and the mouth] are hairless on the inside, for the fire-hole (yoni) is hairless on the inside.

This that people say, ‘Worship this god! Worship that god!’—one god after another—this is his creation indeed! And he himself is all the gods.

Now, whatever is moist, that he created from semen, and that is Soma. This whole world, verily, is just food and the eater of food.

That was Brahma’s super-creation: namely, that he created the gods, his superiors; likewise, that, being mortal, he created the immortals. Therefore was it a super-creation. Verily, he who knows this comes to be in that super-creation of his.

7. Verily, at that time the world was undifferentiated. It became differentiated just by name and form, as the saying is: ‘He has such a name, such a form.’ Even today this world is differentiated just by name and form, as the saying is: ‘He has such a name, such a form.’

He entered in here, even to the fingernail-tips, as a razor would be hidden in a razor-case, or fire in a fire-holder.2 Him they see not, for [as seen] he is incomplete. When breathing, he becomes breath (prāṇa) by name; when speaking, voice; when seeing, the eye; when hearing, the ear; when thinking, the mind: these are merely the names of his acts. Whoever worships one or another of these—he knows not; for he is Edition: current; Page: [83] incomplete with one or another of these. One should worship with the thought that he is just one’s self (ātman), for therein all these become one. That same thing, namely, this self, is the trace (padanīya) of this All, for by it one knows this All. Just as, verily, one might find by a footprint (pada), thus—.1 He finds fame and praise who knows this.

8. That self is dearer than a son, is dearer than wealth, is dearer than all else, since this self is nearer.

If of one who speaks of anything else than the self as dear, one should say, ‘He will lose what he holds dear,’ he would indeed be likely to do so. One should reverence the self alone as dear. He who reverences the self alone as dear—what he holds dear, verily, is not perishable.

9. Here people say: ‘Since men think that by the knowledge of Brahma they become the All, what, pray, was it that Brahma knew whereby he became the All?’

10. Verily, in the beginning this world was Brahma.

It knew only itself (ātmānam): ‘I am Brahma!’ Therefore it became the All. Whoever of the gods became awakened to this, he indeed became it; likewise in the case of seers (ṛṣi), likewise in the case of men. Seeing this, indeed, the seer Vāmadeva began:—

I was Manu and the Sun (Sūrya)!2

This is so now also. Whoever thus knows ‘I am Brahma!’ Edition: current; Page: [84] becomes this All; even the gods have not power to prevent his becoming thus, for he becomes their self (ātman).

So whoever worships another divinity [than his Self], thinking ‘He is one and I another,’ he knows not. He is like a sacrificial animal for the gods. Verily, indeed, as many animals would be of service to a man, even so each single person is of service to the gods. If even one animal is taken away, it is not pleasant. What, then, if many? Therefore it is not pleasing to those [gods] that men should know this.

11. Verily, in the beginning this world was Brahma, one only. Being one, he was not developed. He created still further1 a superior form, the Kshatrahood, even those who are Kshatras (rulers)2 among the gods: Indra, Varuṇa, Soma, Rudra, Parjanya, Yama, Mṛityu, Īśāna. Therefore there is nothing higher than Kshatra. Therefore at the Rājasūya ceremony3 the Brahman sits below the Kshatriya. Upon Kshatrahood alone does he confer this honor. This same thing, namely Brahmanhood (brahma), is the source of Kshatrahood. Therefore, even if the king attains supremacy, he rests finally upon Brahmanhood as his own source. So whoever injures him [i.e. a Brahman] attacks his own source. He fares worse in proportion as he injures one who is better.

12. He was not yet developed. He created the Viś (the commonalty), those kinds of gods that are mentioned in numbers: the Vasus, the Rudras, the Ādityas, the Viśvadevas, the Maruts.

13. He was not yet developed. He created the Śūdra caste (varṇa), Pūshan.4 Verily, this [earth] is Pūshan, for the nourishes (√puṣ) everything that is.

14. He was not yet developed. He created still further a better form, Law (dharma). This is the power (kṣatra) of the Kshatriya class (kṣatra), viz. Law. Therefore there is nothing higher than Law. So a weak man controls a strong man by Law, just as if by a king. Verily, that which is Law is truth. Therefore they say of a man who speaks the truth, ‘He speaks Edition: current; Page: [85] the Law,’ or of a man who speaks the Law, ‘He speaks the truth.’ Verily, both these are the same thing.

15. So that Brahma [appeared as] Kshatra, Viś, and Śūdra. So among the gods Brahma appeared by means of Agni, among men as a Brahman, as a Kshatriya by means of the [divine] Kshatriya, as a Vaiśya by means of the [divine] Vaiśya, as a Śūdra by means of the [divine] Śūdra. Therefore people desire a place among the gods in Agni, among men in a Brahman, for by these two forms [pre-eminently] Brahma appeared.

Now whoever departs from this world [i.e. the world of the Ātman] without having recognized it as his own, to him it is of no service, because it is unknown, as the unrecited Vedas or any other undone deed [do not help a man].

Verily, even if one performs a great and holy work, but without knowing this, that work of his merely perishes in the end. One should worship the Self alone as his [true] world. The work of him who worships the Self alone as his world does not perish, for out of that very Self he creates whatsoever he desires.1

16. Now this Self, verily, is a world of all created things. In so far as a man makes offerings and sacrifices, he becomes the world of the gods. In so far as he learns [the Vedas], he becomes the world of the seers (ṛṣi). In so far as he offers libations to the fathers and desires offspring, he becomes the world of the fathers. In so far as he gives lodging and food to men, he becomes the world of men. In so far as he finds grass and water for animals, he becomes the world of animals. In so far as beasts and birds, even to the ants, find a living in his houses, he becomes their world. Verily, as one would desire security for his own world, so all creatures wish security for him who has this knowledge. This fact, verily, is known when it is thought out.

17. In the beginning this world was just the Self (Ātman), one only. He wished: ‘Would that I had a wife; then I would procreate. Would that I had wealth; then I would offer sacrifice.’ So great, indeed, is desire. Not even if one desired, would he get more than that. Therefore even today when one is lonely one wishes: ‘Would that I had a wife, then Edition: current; Page: [86] I would procreate. Would that I had wealth, then I would offer sacrifice.’ So far as he does not obtain any one of these, he thinks that he is, assuredly, incomplete. Now his completeness is as follows: his mind truly is his self (ātman); his voice is his wife; his breath is his offspring; his eye is his worldly wealth, for with his eye he finds; his ear is his heavenly [wealth], for with his ear he hears it; his body (ātman), indeed, is his work, for with his body he performs work.

The sacrifice is fivefold. The sacrificial animal is fivefold. A person is fivefold. This whole world, whatever there is, is fivefold. He obtains this whole world who knows this.

Fifth Brāhmaṇa

The threefold production of the world by Prajāpati as food for himself

  • 1. When the Father produced by intellect
  • And austerity seven kinds of food,
  • One of his [foods] was common to all,
  • Of two he let the gods partake,
  • Three he made for himself,
  • One he bestowed upon the animals
  • On this [food] everything depends,
  • Both what breathes and what does not.
  • How is it that these do not perish
  • When they are being eaten all the time
  • He who knows this imperishableness—
  • He eats food with his mouth (pratīka),
  • He goes to the gods,
  • He lives on strength.

Thus the verses.

2. ‘When the Father produced by intellect and austerity seven kinds of food’—truly by intellect and austerity the Father did produce them.

‘One of his [foods] was common to all.’ That of his which is common to all is the food that is eaten here. He who worships that, is not turned from evil, for it is mixed [i.e. common, not selected].

‘Of two he let the gods partake.’ They are the huta (fire-sacrifice) and the prahuta (offering). For this reason one Edition: current; Page: [87] sacrifices and offers to the gods. People also say that these two are the new-moon and the full-moon sacrifices. Therefore one should not offer sacrifice [merely] to secure a wish.

‘One he bestowed upon the animals’—that is milk, for at first both men and animals live upon milk. Therefore they either make a new-born babe lick butter or put it to the breast. Likewise they call a new-born calf ‘one that does not eat grass.’

‘On this [food] everything depends, both what breathes and what does not’—for upon milk everything depends, both what breathes and what does not. This that people say, ‘By offering with milk for a year one escapes the second death’—one should know that this is not so, since on the very day that he makes the offering he who knows escapes the second death, for he offers all his food to the gods.

‘How is it that these do not perish when they are being eaten all the time?’ Verily, the Person is imperishableness, for he produces this food again and again.

‘He who knows this imperishableness’—verily, a person is imperishableness, for by continuous meditation he produces this food as his work. Should he not do this, all the food would perish.

‘He eats food with his mouth (pratīka).’ The pratīka is the mouth. So he eats food with his mouth.

‘He goes to the gods, he lives on strength’—this is praise.

3. ‘Three he made for himself.’ Mind, speech, breath—these he made for himself.

People say: ‘My mind was elsewhere; I did not see. My mind was elsewhere; I did not hear. It is with the mind, truly, that one sees. It is with the mind that one hears. Desire, imagination, doubt, faith, lack of faith, steadfastness, lack of steadfastness, shame, meditation, fear—all this is truly mind.1 Therefore even if one is touched on his back, he discerns it with the mind.

Whatever sound there is, it is just speech. Verily, it comes to an end [as human speech]; verily, it does not [as the heavenly voice].

The in-breath, the out-breath, the diffused breath, the up-breath, the middle-breath—all this is just breath.

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Verily, the self (ātman) consists of speech, mind, and breath.

4. These same are the three worlds. This [terrestrial] world is Speech. The middle [atmospheric] world is Mind. That [celestial] world is Breath.

5. These same are the three Vedas. The Rig-Veda is Speech. The Yajur-Veda is Mind. The Sāma-Veda is Breath.

6. The same are the gods, Manes, and men. The gods are Speech. The Manes are Mind. Men are Breath.

7. These same are father, mother, and offspring. The father is Mind. The mother is Speech. The offspring is Breath.

8. These same are what is known, what is to be known, and what is unknown.

Whatever is known is a form of Speech, for Speech is known. Speech, having become this, helps him [i. e. man].

9. Whatever is to be known is a form of Mind, for mind is to be known. Mind, having become this, helps him.

10. Whatever is unknown is a form of Breath, for Breath is unknown. Breath, having become this, helps him.

11. Of this Speech the earth is the body. Its light-form is this [terrestrial] fire. As far as Speech extends, so far extends the earth, so far this fire.

12. Likewise of that Mind the sky is the body. Its light-form is yon sun. As far as Mind extends, so far extends the sky, so far yon sun.

These two [the fire and the sun] entered sexual union. Therefrom was born Breath. He is Indra. He is without a rival. Verily, a second person is a rival. He who knows this has no rival.

13. Likewise of that Breath, water is the body. Its light-form is yon moon. As far as Breath extends, so far extends water, so far yon moon.

These are all alike, all infinite. Verily he who worships them as finite wins a finite world. Likewise he who worships them as infinite wins an infinite world.

One’s self identified with the sixteenfold Prajāpati

14. That Prajāpati is the year. He is composed of sixteen parts. His nights, truly, are fifteen parts. His Edition: current; Page: [89] sixteenth part is steadfast. He is increased and diminished by his nights alone. Having, on the new-moon night, entered with that sixteenth part into everything here that has breath, he is born thence on the following morning [as the new moon]. Therefore on that night one should not cut off the breath of any breathing thing, not even of a lizard, in honor of that divinity.

15. Verily, the person here who knows this, is himself that Prajāpati with the sixteen parts who is the year. The fifteen parts are his wealth. The sixteenth part is his self (ātman). In wealth alone [not in self] is one increased and diminished.

That which is the self (ātman) is a hub; wealth, a felly.1 Therefore even if one is overcome by the loss of everything, provided he himself lives, people say merely: ‘He has come off with the loss of a felly!’

The three worlds and how to win them

16. Now, there are of a truth three worlds—the world of men, the world of the fathers, and the world of the gods. This world of men is to be obtained by a son only, by no other means; the world of the fathers, by sacrifice; the world of the gods, by knowledge. The world of the gods is verily the best of worlds. Therefore they praise knowledge.

A father’s transmission to his son

17. Now next, the Transmission.2

When a man thinks he is about to depart, he says to his son: ‘Thou art holy knowledge. Thou art sacrifice. Thou art the world.’ The son replies: ‘I am holy knowledge. I am sacrifice. I am the world.’ Verily, whatever has been learned [from the Vedas], the sum of all this is expressed by the word ‘knowledge’ (brahma). Verily, whatever sacrifices have been made, the sum of them all is expressed by the word ‘sacrifice.’ Whatever worlds there are, they are all comprehended under the word ‘world.’ So great, verily, is this all.

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‘Being thus the all, let him assist me from this world,’ thus [the father considers]. Therefore they call ‘world-procuring’ a son who has been instructed.1 Therefore they instruct him.

When one who has this knowledge departs from this world, he enters into his son with these vital breaths [i.e. faculties: Speech, Mind, and Breath]. Whatever wrong has been done by him, his son frees him from it all. Therefore he is called a son (putra).2 By his son a father stands firm in this world. Then into him [who has made over to his son his mortal breaths] enter those divine immortal breaths.

18. From the earth and from the fire the divine Speech enters him. Verily, that is the divine Speech whereby whatever one says comes to be.

19. Out of the sky and out of the sun the divine Mind enters him. Verily, that is the divine Mind whereby one becomes blissful and sorrows not.

20. Out of the water and out of the moon the divine Breath enters him. Verily, that is the divine Breath which, whether moving or not moving, is not perturbed, nor injured.

He who knows this becomes the Self of all beings. As is that divinity [i.e. Prajāpati], so is he. As all beings favor that divinity, so to him who knows this all beings show favor. Whatever sufferings creatures endure, these remain with them. Only good goes to him. Evil, verily, does not go to the gods.

Breath, the unfailing power in a person: like the unwearying world-breath, wind

21. Now next, a Consideration of the Activities.—

Prajāpati created the active functions (karma). They, when they had been created, strove with one another. ‘I am going Edition: current; Page: [91] to speak,’ the voice began. ‘I am going to see,’ said the eye. ‘I am going to hear,’ said the ear. So spake the other functions, each according to his function. Death, appearing as weariness, laid hold and took possession of them; and, taking possession of them, Death checked them. Therefore the voice becomes weary, the eye becomes weary, the ear becomes weary. But Death did not take possession of him who was the middle breath. They sought to know him. They said: ‘Verily, he is the best of us, since whether moving or not moving, he is not perturbed, nor perishes. Come, let us all become a form of him.’ Of him, indeed, they became a form. Therefore they are named ‘vital breaths’ after him. In whatever family there is a man who has this knowledge, they call that family after him. Whoever strives with one who knows this, dries up and finally dies.—So much with reference to the self.

22. Now with reference to the divinities.—

‘Verily, I am going to blaze,’ began the Fire. ‘I am going to give forth heat,’ said the Sun. ‘I am going to shine,’ said the Moon. So said the other divinities, each according to his divine nature. As Breath holds the central position among the vital breaths [or functions], so Wind among these divinities; for the other divinities have their decline, but not Wind. The Wind is that divinity which never goes to rest.

23. There is this verse on the subject:—

  • From whom the sun rises
  • And in whom it sets—

in truth, from Breath it rises, and in Breath it sets—

  • Him the gods made law (dharma);
  • He only today and tomorrow will be.

Verily, what those [functions] undertook of old, even that they accomplish today. Therefore one should practise but one activity. He should breathe in and breathe out, wishing, ‘May not the evil one, Death, get me.’ And the observance which he practises he should desire to fulfil to the end. Thereby he wins complete union with that divinity [i.e. Breath] and residence in the same world.

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Sixth Brāhmaṇa

The entire actual world a threefold appearance of the unitary immortal Soul

1. Verily, this world is a triad—name, form, and work.

Of these, as regards names, that which is called Speech is their hymn of praise (uktha), for from it arise (ut-thā) all names. It is their Sāman (chant), for it is the same (sama) as all names. It is their prayer (brahman), for it supports (√bhar) all names.

2. Now of forms.—That which is called the Eye is their hymn of praise (uktha), for from it arise (ut-thā) all forms. It is their Sāman (chant), for it is the same (sama) as all forms. It is their prayer (brahman), for it supports (√bhar) all forms.

3. Now of works.—That which is called the Body (ātman) is their hymn of praise (uktha), for from it arise (ut-thā) all actions. It is their Sāman (chant), for it is the same (sama) as all works. It is their prayer (brahman), for it supports (√bhar) all works.

Although it is that triad, this Soul (Ātman) is one. Although it is one, it is that triad. That is the Immortal veiled by the real (satya). Life (prāṇa, ‘breath’) [a designation of the Ātman], verily, is the Immortal. Name and form are the real. By them this Life is veiled.

SECOND ADHYĀYA

First Brāhmaṇa1

Gārgya and Ajātaśatru’s progressive definition of Brahma as the world-source, entered in sleep

1. Dṛiptabālāki was a learned Gārgya. He said to Ajātaśatru, [king] of Benares: ‘I will tell you about Brahma.’ Ajātaśatru said: ‘We will give a thousand [cows] for such a speech. Verily, people will run hither, crying, “A Janaka! a Janaka!” ’2

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2. Gārgya said: ‘The Person who is yonder in the sun—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him as the pre-eminent, the head and king of all beings. He who worships him as such becomes pre-eminent, the head and king of all beings.’

3. Gārgya said: ‘The Person who is yonder in the moon—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him as the great, white-robed king Soma. He who worships him as such, for him soma is pressed out and continually pressed out day by day. His food does not fail.’

4. Gārgya said: ‘The Person who is yonder in lightning—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him, verily, as the Brilliant. He who worships him as such becomes brilliant indeed. His offspring becomes brilliant.’

5. Gārgya said: ‘The Person who is here in space—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him, verily, as the Full, the non-active. He who worships him as such is filled with offspring and cattle. His offspring goes not forth from this earth.’

6. Gārgya said: ‘The Person who is here in wind—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! Verily, I worship him as Indra, the terrible (vaikuṇṭha), and the unconquered army. He who worships him as such becomes indeed triumphant, unconquerable, and a conqueror of adversaries.’

7. Gārgya said: ‘The Person who is here in fire—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him, verily, as the Vanquisher. He who worships him as such becomes a vanquisher indeed. His offspring become vanquishers.’

8. Gārgya said: ‘The Person who is here in water—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him, verily, as the Counterpart [of phenomenal objects]. His Edition: current; Page: [94] counterpart comes to him [in his children], not that which is not his counterpart. His counterpart is born from him.’

9. Gārgya said: ‘The Person who is here in a mirror—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him, verily, as the Shining One. He who worships him as such becomes shining indeed. His offspring shine. He outshines all those with whom he goes.’

10. Gārgya said: ‘The sound here which follows after one as he goes—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him, verily, as Life (asu). To him who worships him as such there comes a full length of life (āyu) in this world. Breath (prāṇa) leaves him not before the time.’

11. Gārgya said: ‘The Person who is here in the quarters of heaven—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him, verily, as the Inseparable Companion. He who worships him as such has a companion. His company is not separated from him.’

12. Gārgya said: ‘The Person here who consists of shadow—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him, verily, as Death. To him who worships him as such there comes a full length of life in this world. Death does not come to him before the time.’

13. Gārgya said: ‘The Person here who is in the body (ātman)—him, indeed, I worship as Brahma!’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘Talk not to me about him! I worship him, verily, as the Embodied One (atmanvin). He who worships him as such becomes embodied indeed. His offspring becomes embodied.’

Gārgya became silent.

14. Ajātaśatru said: ‘Is that all?’

Gārgya said: ‘That is all.’

Ajātaśatru said: ‘With that much [only] it is not known.’

Gārgya said: ‘Let me come to you as a pupil.’

15. Ajātaśatru said: ‘Verily, it is contrary to the course of things that a Brahman should come to a Kshatriya, thinking Edition: current; Page: [95] “He will tell me Brahma.” However, I shall cause you to know him clearly.’

He took him by the hand and rose. The two went up to a man who was asleep. They addressed him with these words: ‘Thou great, white-robed king Soma!’ He did not rise. He [i.e. Ajātaśatru] woke him by rubbing him with his hand. That one arose.

16. Ajātaśatru said: ‘When this man fell asleep thus, where then was the person who consists of intelligence (vijñāna)? Whence did he thus come back?’

And this also Gārgya did not know.

17. Ajātaśatru said: ‘When this man has fallen asleep thus, then the person who consists of intelligence, having by his intelligence taken to himself the intelligence of these senses (prāṇa), rests in that place which is the space within the heart. When that person restrains the senses, that person is said to be asleep. Then the breath is restrained. The voice is restrained. The eye is restrained. The ear is restrained. The mind is restrained.

18. When he goes to sleep, these worlds are his. Then he becomes a great king, as it were. Then he becomes a great Brahman, as it were. He enters the high and the low, as it were. As a great king, taking with him his people, moves around in his own country as he pleases, even so here this one, taking with him his senses, moves around in his own body (śarīra) as he pleases.

19. Now when one falls sound asleep (suṣupta), when one knows nothing whatsoever, having crept out through the seventy-two thousand veins, called hitā, which lead from the heart to the pericardium, one rests in the pericardium. Verily, as a youth or a great king or a great Brahman might rest when he has reached the summit of bliss, so this one now rests.

20. As a spider might come out with his thread, as small sparks come forth from the fire, even so from this Soul come forth all vital energies (prāṇa), all worlds, all gods, all beings. The mystic meaning (upaniṣad) thereof is ‘the Real of the real’ (satyasya satya).1 Breathing creatures, verily, are the real. He is their Real.’

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Second Brāhmaṇa

The embodiment of Breath in a person

1. Verily, he who knows the new-born infant with his housing, his covering, his post, and his rope, keeps off seven hostile relatives.

Verily, this infant is Breath (prāṇa) in the middle. Its housing is this [body]. Its covering is this [head]. Its post is breath (prāṇa). Its rope is food.

2. Seven imperishable beings stand near to serve him. Thus there are these red streaks in the eye. By them Rudra is united with him. Then there is the water in the eye. By it Parjanya is united with him. There is the pupil of the eye. By it the sun is united with him. By the black of the eye, Agni; by the white of the eye, Indra; by the lower eyelash, Earth is united with him; by the upper eyelash, Heaven. He who knows this—his food does not fail.

3. In connection herewith there is this verse:—

  • There is a cup with its mouth below and its bottom up.
  • In it is placed every form of glory.
  • On its rim sit seven seers.
  • Voice as an eighth is united with prayer
  • (brahman).1

‘There is a cup having its mouth below and its bottom up’—this is the head, for that is a cup having its mouth below and its bottom up. ‘In it is placed every form of glory’—breaths, verily, are the ‘every form of glory’ placed in it; thus he says breaths (prāṇa). ‘On its rim sit seven seers’—verily, the breaths are the seers. Thus he says breaths. ‘Voice as an eighth is united with prayer’—for voice as an eighth is united with prayer.

4. These two [sense-organs] here [i.e. the ears] are Gotama and Bharadvāja. This is Gotama and this is Bharadvāja. These two here [i.e. the eyes] are Viśvāmitra and Jamadagni. This is Viśvāmitra. This is Jamadagni. These two here [i.e. the nostrils] are Vasishṭha and Kaśyapa. This is Vasishṭha. This is Kaśyapa. The voice is Atri, for by the voice food is eaten (√ad). Verily, eating (at-ti) is the same as the name Edition: current; Page: [97] Atri. He who knows this becomes the eater of everything; everything becomes his food.

Third Brāhmaṇa

The two forms of Brahma

1. There are, assuredly, two forms of Brahma: the formed (mūrta) and the formless,1 the mortal and the immortal, the stationary and the moving, the actual (sat) and the yon (tya).

2. This is the formed [Brahma]—whatever is different from the wind and the atmosphere. This is mortal; this is stationary; this is actual. The essence of this formed, mortal, stationary, actual [Brahma] is yonder [sun] which gives forth heat, for that is the essence of the actual.

3. Now the formless [Brahma] is the wind and the atmosphere. This is immortal, this is moving, this is the yon. The essence of this unformed, immortal, moving, yonder [Brahma] is the Person in that sun-disk, for he is the essence of the yon.—Thus with reference to the divinities.

4. Now, with reference to the self.—

Just that is the formed [Brahma] which is different from breath (prāṇa) and from the space which is within the self (ātman). This is mortal, this is stationary, this is actual. The essence of this formed, mortal, stationary, actual [Brahma] is the eye, for it is the essence of the actual.

5. Now the formless [Brahma] is the breath and the space which is within the self. This is immortal, this is moving, this is the yon. The essence of this unformed, immortal, moving, yonder [Brahma] is this Person who is in the right eye, for he is the essence of the yonder.

6. The form of this Person is like a saffron-colored robe, like white wool, like the [purple] Indragopa beetle, like a flame of fire, like the [white] lotus-flower, like a sudden flash of lightning. Verily, like a sudden lightning-flash is the glory of him who knows this.

Hence, now, there is the teaching ‘Not thus! not so!’ (neti, neti), for there is nothing higher than this, that he is thus. Now the designation for him is ‘the Real of the real.’ Verily, breathing creatures are the real. He is their Real.

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Fourth Brāhmaṇa

The conversation of Yājñavalkya and Maitreyī concerning the pantheistic Soul

1. ‘Maitreyī!’ said Yājñavalkya. ‘lo, verily, I am about to go forth from this state.1 Behold! let me make a final settlement for you and that Kātyāyanī.’

2. Then said Maitreyī: ‘If now, Sir, this whole earth filled with wealth were mine, would I be immortal thereby?’

‘No,’ said Yājñavalkya. ‘As the life of the rich, even so would your life be. Of immortality, however, there is no hope through wealth.’

3. Then said Maitreyī: ‘What should I do with that through which I may not be immortal? What you know, Sir—that, indeed, tell me!’

4. Then said Yājñavalkya: ‘Ah (bata)! Lo (are), dear (priyā) as you are to us, dear is what you say! Come, sit down. I will explain to you. But while I am expounding, do you seek to ponder thereon.’

5. Then said he: ‘Lo, verily, not for love of the husband is a husband dear, but for love of the Soul (Ātman) a husband is dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the wife is a wife dear, but for love of the Soul a wife is dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the sons are sons dear, but for love of the Soul sons are dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the wealth is wealth dear, but for love of the Soul wealth is dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of Brahmanhood2 (brahma) is Brahmanhood dear, but for love of the Soul Brahmanhood is dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of Kshatrahood2 (kṣatra) is Kshatrahood dear, but for love of the Soul Kshatrahood is dear.

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Lo, verily, not for love of the worlds are the worlds dear, but for love of the Soul the worlds are dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the gods are the gods dear, but for love of the Soul the gods are dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the beings (bhūta) are beings dear, but for love of the Soul beings are dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of all is all dear, but for love of the Soul all is dear.

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Lo, verily, it is the Soul (Ātman) that should be seen, that should be hearkened to, that should be thought on, that should be pondered on, O Maitreyī. Lo, verily, with the seeing of, with the hearkening to, with the thinking of, and with the understanding of the Soul, this world-all is known.

6. Brahmanhood has deserted1 him who knows Brahmanhood in aught else than the Soul.

Kshatrahood has deserted1 him who knows Kshatrahood in aught else than the Soul.

The worlds have deserted him who knows the worlds in aught else than the Soul.

The gods have deserted him who knows the gods in aught else than the Soul.

Beings have deserted him who knows beings in aught else than the Soul.

Everything has deserted him who knows everything in aught else than the Soul.

This Brahmanhood, this Kshatrahood, these worlds, these gods, these beings, everything here is what this Soul is.

7. It is—as, when a drum is being beaten, one would not be able to grasp the external sounds, but by grasping the drum or the beater of the drum the sound is grasped.

8. It is—as, when a conch-shell is being blown, one would not be able to grasp the external sounds, but by grasping the conch-shell or the blower of the conch-shell the sound is grasped.

9. It is—as, when a lute is being played, one would not be able to grasp the external sounds, but by grasping the lute or the player of the lute the sound is grasped.

10. It is—as, from a fire laid with damp fuel, clouds of smoke separately issue forth, so, lo, verily, from this great Being (bhūta) has been breathed forth that which is Rig-Veda, Yajur-Veda, Sāma-Veda, [Hymns] of the Atharvans and Aṅgirases,2 Legend (itihāsa), Ancient Lore (purāṇa), Sciences (vidyā), Mystic Doctrines (upaniṣad), Verses (śloka), Aphorisms (sūtra), Edition: current; Page: [101] Explanations (anuvyākhyāna), and Commentaries (vyākhyāna). From it, indeed, are all these breathed forth.1

11. It is—as of all waters the uniting-point is the sea, so of all touches the uniting-point is the skin, so of all tastes the uniting-point is the tongue, so of all smells the uniting-point is the nostrils, so of all forms the uniting-point is the eye, so of all sounds the uniting-point is the ear, so of all intentions (saṁkalpa) the uniting-point is the mind (manas), so of all knowledges the uniting-point is the heart, so of all acts (karma) the uniting-point is the hands, so of all pleasures (ānanda) the uniting-point is the generative organ, so of all evacuations the uniting-point is the anus, so of all journeys the uniting-point is the feet, so of all the Vedas the uniting-point is speech.

12. It is—as a lump of salt cast in water would dissolve right into the water; there would not be [any]2 of it to seize forth, as it were (iva), but wherever one may take, it is salty indeed—so, lo, verily, this great Being (bhūta). infinite, limitless, is just a mass of knowledge (vijñāna-ghana).

Arising out of these elements (bhūta), into them also one vanishes away. After death there is no consciousness (na pretya saṁjñā ’sti). Thus, lo, say I.’ Thus spake Yājñavalkya.

13. Then spake Maitreyī: ‘Herein, indeed, you have bewildered me, Sir—in saying (iti): “After death there is no consciousness”!’

Then spake Yājñavalkya: ‘Lo, verily, I speak not bewilderment (moha). Sufficient, lo, verily, is this for understanding.

14. For where there is a duality (dvaita), as it were (iva), there one sees another; there one smells another; there one hears another; there one speaks to another; there one thinks of another; there one understands another. Where, verily, everything has become just one’s own self, then whereby and whom would one smell? then whereby and whom would one see? then whereby and whom would one hear? then whereby and to whom would one speak? then whereby and on whom would one think? then whereby and Edition: current; Page: [102] whom would one understand? Whereby would one understand him by whom one understands this All? Lo, whereby would one understand the understander?’

Fifth Brāhmaṇa

The co-relativity of all things cosmic and personal, and the absoluteness of the immanent Soul

1. This earth is honey for all creatures, and all creatures are honey for this earth. This shining, immortal Person who is in this earth, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who is in the body—he, indeed, is just this Soul (Ātman), this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

2. These waters are honey for all things, and all things are honey for these waters. This shining, immortal Person who is in these waters, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who is made of semen—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

3. This fire is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this fire. This shining, immortal Person who is in this fire, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who is made of speech—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

4. This wind is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this wind. This shining, immortal Person who is in this wind, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who is breath—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

5. This sun is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this sun. This shining, immortal Person who is in this sun, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who is in the eye—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

6. These quarters of heaven are honey for all things, and all things are honey for these quarters of heaven. This shining, immortal Person who is in these quarters of heaven, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who is in the ear and in the echo—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

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7. This moon is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this moon. This shining, immortal Person who is in this moon, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person consisting of mind—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

8. This lightning is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this lightning. This shining, immortal Person who is in this lightning, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who exists as heat—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

9. This thunder is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this thunder. This shining, immortal Person who is in thunder, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who is in sound and in tone—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

10. This space is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this space. This shining, immortal Person who is in this space, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who is in the space in the heart—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

11. This Law (dharma) is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this Law. This shining, immortal Person who is in this Law, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who exists as virtuousness—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

12. This Truth is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this Truth. This shining, immortal Person who is in this Truth, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who exists as truthfulness—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

13. This mankind (mānuṣa) is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this mankind. This shining, immortal Person who is in this mankind, and, with reference to oneself, this shining, immortal Person who exists as a human being—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

14. This Soul (Ātman) is honey for all things, and all things are honey for this Soul. This shining, immortal Person who is in this Soul, and, with reference to oneself, this shining. Edition: current; Page: [104] immortal Person who exists as Soul—he is just this Soul, this Immortal, this Brahma, this All.

15. Verily, this Soul is the overlord of all things, the king of all things. As all the spokes are held together in the hub and felly of a wheel, just so in this Soul all things, all gods, all worlds, all breathing things, all selves are held together.

The honey-doctrine taught in the Vedas

16. This, verily, is the honey which Dadhyañc Ātharvaṇa declared unto the two Aśvins. Seeing this, the seer spake:—

  • ‘That mighty deed of yours, O ye two heroes, [which ye did] for gain,
  • I make known, as thunder [makes known the coming] rain,
  • Even the honey which Dadhyañc Ātharvaṇa to you
  • Did declare by the head of a horse.’1

17. This, verily, is the honey which Dadhyañc Ātharvaṇa declared unto the two Aśvins. Seeing this, the seer spake:—

  • ‘Upon Dadhyañc Ātharvaṇa ye Aśvins
  • Did substitute a horse’s head.
  • He, keeping true, declared to you the honey
  • Of Tvashtṛi, which is your secret, O ye mighty ones.’2

18. This, verily, is the honey which Dadhyañc Ātharvaṇa declared unto the two Aśvins. Seeing this, the seer spake:—

  • ‘Citadels with two feet he did make.
  • Citadels with four feet he did make.
  • Into the citadels he, having become a bird—
  • Into the citadels (puras) the Person (puruṣa) entered.’

This, verily, is the person (puruṣa) dwelling in all cities (puriśaya). There is nothing by which he is not covered, nothing by which he is not hid.

19. This, verily, is the honey which Dadhyañc Ātharvaṇa declared unto the two Aśvins. Seeing this, the seer spake:—

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  • ‘He became corresponding in form to every form.
  • This is to be looked upon as a form of him.
  • Indra by his magic powers (māyā) goes about in many forms;
  • Yoked are his ten-hundred steeds.’1

He [i.e. the Soul, Ātman], verily, is the steeds. He, verily, is tens and thousands, many and endless. This Brahma is without an earlier and without a later, without an inside and without an outside. This Soul is Brahma, the all-perceiving.—Such is the instruction.

Sixth Brāhmaṇa

The teachers of this doctrine

1. Now the Line of Tradition (vaṁśa). —

  • Pautimāshya [received this teaching] from Gaupavana,
  • Gaupavana from Pautimāshya,
  • Pautimāshya from Gaupavana,
  • Gaupavana from Kauśika,
  • Kauśika from Kauṇḍinya,
  • Kauṇḍinya from Śāṇḍilya,
  • Śāṇḍilya from Kauśika and Gautama,
  • Gautama [2] from Āgniveśya,
  • Āgniveśya from Śāṇḍilya and Ānabhimlāta,
  • Ānabhimlāta from Ānabhimlāta,
  • Ānabhimlāta from Ānabhimlāta,
  • Ānabhimlāta from Gautama,
  • Gautama from Saitava and Prācīnayogya,
  • Saitava and Prācīnayogya from Pārāśarya,
  • Pārāśarya from Bhāradvāja,
  • Bhāradvāja from Bhāradvāja and Gautama,
  • Gautama from Bhāradvāja,
  • Bhāradvāja from Pārāśarya,
  • Pārāśarya from Vaijavāpāyana,
  • Vaijavāpāyana from Kauśikāyani,
  • Kauśikāyani [3] from Ghṛitakauśika,
  • Ghṛitakauśika from Pārāśaryāyaṇa,
  • Pārāśaryāyaṇa from Pārāśarya,
  • Pārāśarya from Jātūkarṇya,
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  • Jātūkarṇya from Āsurāyaṇa and Yāska,
  • Āsurāyaṇa from Traivani,
  • Traivani from Aupajandhani,
  • Aupajandhani from Āsuri,
  • Āsuri from Bhāradvāja,
  • Bhāradvāja from Ātreya,
  • Ātreya from Māṇṭi,
  • Māṇṭi from Gautama
  • Gautama from Gautama,
  • Gautama from Vātsya,
  • Vātsya from Śāṇḍilya,
  • Śāṇḍilya from Kaiśorya Kāpya,
  • Kaiśorya Kāpya from Kumārahārita,
  • Kumārahārita from Gālava,
  • Gālava from Vidarbhīkauṇḍinya,
  • Vidarbhīkauṇḍinya from Vatsanapād Bābhrava,
  • Vatsanapād Bābhrava from Panthāḥ Saubhara,
  • Panthāḥ Saubhara from Ayāsya Āṅgirasa,
  • Ayāsya Āṅgirasa from Ābhūti Tvāshṭra,
  • Ābhūti Tvāshṭra from Viśvarūpa Tvāshṭra,
  • Viśvarūpa Tvāshṭra from the two Aśvins,
  • the two Aśvins from Dadhyañc Ātharvaṇa,
  • Dadhyañc Ātharvaṇa from Atharvan Daiva,
  • Atharvan Daiva from Mṛityu Prādhvaṁsana,
  • Mṛityu Prādhvaṁsana from Pradhvaṁsana,
  • Pradhvaṁsana from Eka Ṛishi,
  • Eka Ṛishi from Vipracitti,
  • Vipracitti from Vyashṭi,
  • Vyashṭi from Sanāru,
  • Sanāru from Sanātana,
  • Sanātana from Sanaga,
  • Sanaga from Parameshṭin,
  • Parameshṭin from Brahma.

Brahma is the Self-existent (svayam-bhū). Adoration to Brahma!

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THIRD ADHYĀYA

First Brāhmaṇa

Concerning sacrificial worship and its rewards

1. Janaka, [king] of Videha, sacrificed with a sacrifice at which many presents were distributed. Brahmans of the Kurupañcālas were gathered together there. In this Janaka of Videha there arose a desire to know which of these Brahmans was the most learned in scripture. He enclosed a thousand cows. To the horns of each ten pādas [of gold] were bound.

2. He said to them: ‘Venerable Brahmans, let him of you who is the best Brahman drive away these cows.’

Those Brahmans durst not.

Then Yājñavalkya said to his pupil: ‘Sāmaśravas, my dear, drive them away.’

He drove them away.

The Brahmans were angry. ‘How can he declare himself to be the best Brahman among us?’

Now there was Aśvala, the Hotṛi-priest of Janaka, [king] of Videha. He asked him: ‘Yājñavalkya, are you now the best Brahman among us?’

He replied, ‘We give honor to the best Brahman. But we are really desirous of having those cows.’

Thereupon Aśvala, the Hotṛi-priest, began to question him.

3. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘since everything here is overtaken by death, since everything is overcome by death, whereby is a sacrificer liberated beyond the reach of death?’

‘By the Hotṛi-priest, by fire, by speech. Verily, speech is the Hotṛi of sacrifice. That which is this speech is this fire, is the Hotṛi. This is release (mukti), this is complete release.’

4. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘since everything here is overtaken by day and night, since everything is overcome by day and night, whereby is a sacrificer liberated beyond day and night?

‘By the Adhvaryu-priest, by the eye, by the sun. Verily, the eye is the Adhvaryu of sacrifice. That which is this eye is yonder sun, is the Adhvaryu. This is release, this is complete release.’

5. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘since everything here is overtaken Edition: current; Page: [108] by the waxing and waning moon, by what means does a sacrificer obtain release from the waxing and waning moon?’

‘By the Udgātṛi-priest, by the wind, by breath. Verily breath is the Udgātṛi of the sacrifice. That which is this breath is wind, is the Udgātṛi. This is release, this is complete release.’

6. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘since this atmosphere does not afford a [foot]hold, as it were, by what means of ascent does a sacrificer ascend to the heavenly world?’

‘By the Brahman-priest, by the mind, by the moon. Verily, the mind is the Brahman of the sacrifice. That which is this mind is yonder moon, is the Brahman. This is release, this is complete release.’—Thus [concerning] liberation.

Now the acquirements.—

7. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘how many Ṛig verses will the Hotṛi make use of today in this sacrifice?’

‘Three.’

‘Which are those three?’

‘The introductory verse, the accompanying verse, and the benediction as the third.’

‘What does one win by these?’

‘Whatever there is here that has breath.’

8. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘how many oblations will the Adhvaryu pour out today in this sacrifice?’

‘Three.’

‘Which are those three?’

‘Those which when offered flame up, those which when offered flow over, those which when offered sink down.’

‘What does one win by these?’

‘By those which when offered flame up, one wins the world of the gods, for the world of the gods gleams, as it were. By those which when offered flow over (ati-nedante), one wins the world of the fathers, for the world of the fathers is over (ati), as it were. By those which when offered sink down (adhiśerate), one wins the world of men, for the world of men is below (adhas), as it were.’

9. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘with how many divinities does the Brahman protect the sacrifice on the right today?’

‘With one.’

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‘Which is that one?’

‘The mind. Verily, endless is the mind. Endless are the All-gods. An endless world he wins thereby.’

10. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘how many hymns of praise will the Udgātṛi chant today in this sacrifice?’

‘Three.’

‘Which are those three?’

‘The introductory hymn, the accompanying hymn, and the benediction hymn as the third.’

‘Which are those three with reference to the self?’

‘The introductory hymn is the in-breath (prāṇa). The accompanying hymn is the out-breath (apāna). The benediction hymn is the diffused breath (vyāna).’

‘What does one win by these?’

‘One wins the earth-world by the introductory hymn, the atmosphere-world by the accompanying hymn, the sky-world by the benediction hymn.’

Thereupon the Hotṛi-priest Aśvala held his peace.

Second Brāhmaṇa

The fettered soul, and its fate at death

1. Then Jāratkārava Ārtabhāga questioned him. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘how many apprehenders are there? How many over-apprehenders?’

‘Eight apprehenders. Eight over-apprehenders.’

‘Those eight apprehenders and eight over-apprehenders—which are they?’

2. ‘Breath (prāṇa), verily, is an apprehender. It is seized by the out-breath (apāna) as an over-apprehender, for by the out-breath one smells an odor.

3. Speech, verily, is an apprehender. It is seized by name as an over-apprehender, for by speech one speaks names.

4. The tongue, verily, is an apprehender. It is seized by taste as an over-apprehender, for by the tongue one knows tastes.

5. The eye, verily, is an apprehender. It is seized by appearance as an over-apprehender, for by the eye one sees appearances.

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6. The ear, verily, is an apprehender. It is seized by sound as an over-apprehender, for by the ear one hears sounds.

7. The mind, verily, is an apprehender. It is seized by desire as an over-apprehender, for by the mind one desires desires.

8. The hands, verily, are an apprehender. It is seized by action as an over-apprehender, for by the hands one performs action.

9. The skin, verily, is an apprehender. It is seized by touch as an over-apprehender, for by the skin one is made to know touches.’

10. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘since everything here is food for death, who, pray, is that divinity for whom death is food?’

‘Death, verily, is a fire. It is the food of water (āpas). He overcomes (apa-jayati) a second death [who knows this].’1

11. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘when a man dies, do the breaths go out of him, or no?’

‘No,’ said Yājñavalkya. ‘They are gathered together right there. He swells up. He is inflated. The dead man lies inflated.’

12. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘when a man dies, what does not leave him?’

‘The name. Endless, verily, is the name. Endless are the All-gods. An endless world he wins thereby.’

13. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘when the voice of a dead man goes into fire, his breath into wind, his eye into the sun, his mind into the moon, his hearing into the quarters of heaven, his body into the earth, his soul (ātman) into space, the hairs of his head into plants, the hairs of his body into trees, and his blood and semen are placed in water, what then becomes of this person (puruṣa)?’

‘Ārtabhāga, my dear, take my hand. We two only will know of this. This is not for us two [to speak of] in public.’

The two went away and deliberated. What they said was karma (action). What they praised was karma. Verily, one becomes good by good action, bad by bad action.

Thereupon Jāratkārava Ārtabhāga held his peace.

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Third Brāhmaṇa

Where the offerers of the horse-sacrifice go

1. Then Bhujyu Lāhyāyani questioned him. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘we were traveling around as wanderers among the Madras. As such we came to the house of Patañcala Kāpya. He had a daughter who was possessed by a Gandharva. We asked him: “Who are you?” He said: “I am Sudhanvan, a descendant of Aṅgiras.” When we were asking him about the ends of the earth, we said to him: “What has become of the Pārikshitas? What has become of the Pārikshitas?”—I now ask you, Yājñavalkya. What has become of the Pārikshitas?’

2. He said: ‘That one doubtless said, “They have, in truth, gone whither the offerers of the horse-sacrifice go.” ’

‘Where, pray, do the offerers of the horse-sacrifice go?’

‘This inhabited world, of a truth, is as broad as thirty-two days [i.e. days’ journeys] of the sun-god’s chariot. The earth, which is twice as wide, surrounds it on all sides. The ocean, which is twice as wide, surrounds the earth on all sides. Then there is an interspace as broad as the edge of a razor or the wing of a mosquito. Indra, taking the form of a bird, delivered them [i.e. the Pārikshitas] to Wind. Wind, placing them in himself, led them where the offerers of the horse-sacrifice were. Somewhat thus he [i.e. Sudhanvan] praised Wind. Therefore Wind alone is individuality (vyaṣṭi). Wind is totality (samaṣṭi). He who knows this overcomes a second death.’

Thereupon Bhujyu Lāhyāyani held his peace.

Fourth Brāhmaṇa

The theoretical unknowability of the immanent Brahma

1. Then Ushasta Cākrāyaṇa questioned him. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘explain to me him who is the Brahma present and not beyond our ken, him who is the Soul in all things.’

‘He is your soul (ātman), which is in all things.’

‘Which one, O Yājñavalkya, is in all things?’

‘He who breathes in with your breathing in (prāṇa) is the Edition: current; Page: [112] Soul of yours, which is in all things. He who breathes out with your breathing out (apāna) is the Soul of yours, which is in all things. He who breathes about with your breathing about (vyāna) is the Soul of yours, which is in all things. He who breathes up with your breathing up (udāna) is the Soul of yours, which is in all things. He is your soul, which is in all things.’

2. Ushasta Cākrāyaṇa said: ‘This has been explained to me just as one might say, “This is a cow. This is a horse.” Explain to me him who is just the Brahma present and not beyond our ken, him who is the Soul in all things.’

‘He is your soul, which is in all things.’

‘Which one, O Yājñavalkya, is in all things?’

‘You could not see the seer of seeing. You could not hear the hearer of hearing. You could not think the thinker of thinking. You could not understand the understander of understanding. He is your soul, which is in all things. Aught else than Him [or, than this] is wretched.’

Thereupon Ushasta Cākrāyaṇa held his peace.

Fifth Brāhmaṇa

The practical way of knowing Brahma—by asceticism

1. Now Kahola Kaushītakeya questioned him. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘explain to me him who is just the Brahma present and not beyond our ken, him who is the Soul in all things.’

  • ‘He is your soul, which is in all things.’
  • ‘Which one, O Yājñavalkya, is in all things?’

‘He who passes beyond hunger and thirst, beyond sorrow and delusion, beyond old age and death—Brahmans who know such a Soul overcome desire for sons, desire for wealth, desire for worlds, and live the life of mendicants. For desire for sons is desire for wealth, and desire for wealth is desire for worlds, for both these are merely desires. Therefore let a Brahman become disgusted with learning and desire to live as a child. When he has become disgusted both with the state of childhood and with learning, then he becomes an ascetic (muni). When he has become disgusted both with the non-ascetic state and with the ascetic state, then he becomes a Brahman.’

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‘By what means would he become a Brahman?’

‘By that means by which he does become such a one. Aught else than this Soul (Ātman) is wretched.’

Thereupon Kahola Kaushītakeya held his peace.

Sixth Brāhmaṇa

The regressus to Brahma, the ultimate world-ground

Then Gārgī Vācaknavī questioned him. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said she, ‘since all this world is woven, warp and woof, on water, on what, pray, is the water woven, warp and woof?’

‘On wind, O Gārgī.’

‘On what then, pray, is the wind woven, warp and woof?’

‘On the atmosphere-worlds, O Gārgī.’

‘On what then, pray, are the atmosphere-worlds woven, warp and woof?’

‘On the worlds of the Gandharvas, O Gārgī.’

‘On what then, pray, are the worlds of the Gandharvas woven, warp and woof?’

‘On the worlds of the sun, O Gārgī.’

‘On what then, pray, are the worlds of the sun woven, warp and woof?’

‘On the worlds of the moon, O Gārgī.’

‘On what then, pray, are the worlds of the moon woven, warp and woof?’

‘On the worlds of the stars, O Gārgī.’

‘On what then, pray, are the worlds of the stars woven, warp and woof?’

‘On the worlds of the gods, O Gārgī.’

‘On what then, pray, are the worlds of the gods woven, warp and woof?’

‘On the worlds of Indra, O Gārgī.’

‘On what then, pray, are the worlds of Indra woven, warp and woof?’

‘On the worlds of Prajāpati, O Gārgī.’

‘On what then, pray, are the worlds of Prajāpati woven, warp and woof?’

‘On the worlds of Brahma, O Gārgī.’

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‘On what then, pray, are the worlds of Brahma woven, warp and woof?’

Yājñavalkya said: ‘Gārgī, do not question too much, lest your head fall off. In truth you are questioning too much about a divinity about which further questions cannot be asked. Gārgī, do not over-question.’

Thereupon Gārgī Vācaknavī held her peace.

Seventh Brāhmaṇa

Wind, the string holding the world together; the immortal pantheistic Soul, the Inner Controller

1. Then Uddālaka Āruṇi questioned him. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said he, ‘we were dwelling among the Madras in the house of Patañcala Kāpya, studying the sacrifice. He had a wife possessed by a spirit (gandharva). We asked him: “Who are you?” He said: “I am Kabandha Ātharvaṇa.” He said to Patañcala Kāpya and to us students of the sacrifice: “Do you know, O Kāpya, that thread by which this world and the other world and all things are tied together?” Patañcala Kāpya said: “I do not know it, Sir.” He said to Patañcala Kāpya and to us students of the sacrifice: “Pray do you know, O Kāpya, that Inner Controller who from within controls this world and the other world and all things?” Patañcala Kāpya said: “I do not know him, Sir.” He said to Patañcala Kāpya and to us students of the sacrifice: “Verily, Kāpya, he who knows that thread and the so-called Inner Controller knows Brahma, he knows the worlds, he knows the gods, he knows the Vedas, he knows created things, he knows the Soul, he knows everything.” Thus he [i.e. the spirit] explained it to them. And I know it. If you, O Yājñavalkya, drive away the Brahma-cows without knowing that thread and the Inner Controller, your head will fall off.’

‘Verily, I know that thread and the Inner Controller, O Gautama.’

‘Any one might say “I know, I know.” Do you tell what you know.’

2. He [i.e. Yājñavalkya] said: ‘Wind, verily, O Gautama, Edition: current; Page: [115] is that thread. By wind, verily, O Gautama, as by a thread, this world and the other world and all things are tied together. Therefore, verily, O Gautama, they say of a deceased person, “His limbs become unstrung,” for by wind, O Gautama, as by a thread, they are strung together.’

‘Quite so, O Yājñavalkya. Declare the Inner Controller.’

3. ‘He who, dwelling in the earth, yet is other than the earth, whom the earth does not know, whose body the earth is, who controls the earth from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

4. He who, dwelling in the waters, yet is other than the waters, whom the waters do not know, whose body the waters are, who controls the waters from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

5. He who, dwelling in the fire, yet is other than the fire, whom the fire does not know, whose body the fire is, who controls the fire from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

6. He who, dwelling in the atmosphere, yet is other than the atmosphere, whom the atmosphere does not know, whose body the atmosphere is, who controls the atmosphere from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

7. He who, dwelling in the wind, yet is other than the wind, whom the wind does not know, whose body the wind is, who controls the wind from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

8. He who, dwelling in the sky, yet is other than the sky, whom the sky does not know, whose body the sky is, who controls the sky from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

9. He who, dwelling in the sun, yet is other than the sun, whom the sun does not know, whose body the sun is, who controls the sun from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

10. He who, dwelling in the quarters of heaven, yet is other than the quarters of heaven, whom the quarters of heaven do not know, whose body the quarters of heaven are, who controls the quarters of heaven from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

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11. He who, dwelling in the moon and stars, yet is other than the moon and stars, whom the moon and stars do not know, whose body the moon and stars are, who controls the moon and stars from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

12. He who, dwelling in space, yet is other than space, whom space does not know, whose body space is, who controls space from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

13. He who, dwelling in the darkness, yet is other than the darkness, whom the darkness does not know, whose body the darkness is, who controls the darkness from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

14. He who, dwelling in the light, yet is other than the light, whom the light does not know, whose body the light is, who controls the light from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

—Thus far with reference to the divinities. Now with reference to material existence (adhi-bhūta).—

15. He who, dwelling in all things, yet is other than all things, whom all things do not know, whose body all things are, who controls all things from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

—Thus far with reference to material existence. Now with reference to the self.—

16. He who, dwelling in breath, yet is other than breath, whom the breath does not know, whose body the breath is, who controls the breath from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

17. He who, dwelling in speech, yet is other than speech, whom the speech does not know, whose body the speech is, who controls the speech from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

18. He who, dwelling in the eye, yet is other than the eye, whom the eye does not know, whose body the eye is, who controls the eye from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

19. He who, dwelling in the ear, yet is other than the ear, whom the ear does not know, whose body the ear is, who Edition: current; Page: [117] controls the ear from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

20. He who, dwelling in the mind, yet is other than the mind, whom the mind does not know, whose body the mind is, who controls the mind from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

21. He who, dwelling in the skin, yet is other than the skin, whom the skin does not know, whose body the skin is, who controls the skin from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

22. He who, dwelling in the understanding, yet is other than the understanding, whom the understanding does not know, whose body the understanding is, who controls the understanding from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

23. He who, dwelling in the semen, yet is other than the semen, whom the semen does not know, whose body the semen is, who controls the semen from within—He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.

He is the unseen Seer, the unheard Hearer, the unthought Thinker, the ununderstood Understander. Other than He there is no seer. Other than He there is no hearer. Other than He there is no thinker. Other than He there is no understander. He is your Soul, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.’

Thereupon Uddālaka Āruṇi held his peace.

Eighth Brāhmaṇa

The ultimate warp of the world—the unqualified Imperishable

1. Then [Gārgī] Vācaknavī said: ‘Venerable Brahmans, lo, I will ask him [i.e. Yājñavalkya] two questions. If he will answer me these, not one of you will surpass him in discussions about Brahma.’

‘Ask, Gārgī.’

2. She said: ‘As a noble youth of the Kāśīs or of the Videhas might rise up against you, having strung his unstrung bow and taken two foe-piercing arrows in his hand, even so, O Yājñavalkya, have I risen up against you with two questions. Answer me these.’

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Yājñavalkya said: ‘Ask, Gārgī.’

3. She said: ‘That, O Yājñavalkya, which is above the sky, that which is beneath the earth, that which is between these two, sky and earth, that which people call the past and the present and the future—across what is that woven, warp and woof?’

4. He said: ‘That, O Gārgī, which is above the sky, that which is beneath the earth, that which is between these two, sky and earth, that which people call the past and the present and the future—across space is that woven, warp and woof.’

5. She said: ‘Adoration to you, Yājñavalkya, in that you have solved this question for me. Prepare yourself for the other.’

‘Ask, Gārgī.’

6. She said: ‘That, O Yājñavalkya, which is above the sky, that which is beneath the earth, that which is between these two, sky and earth, that which people call the past and the present and the future—across what is that woven, warp and woof?’

7. He said: ‘That, O Gārgī, which is above the sky, that which is beneath the earth, that which is between these two, sky and earth, that which people call the past and the present and the future—across space alone is that woven, warp and woof.’

‘Across what then, pray, is space woven, warp and woof?’

8. He said: ‘That, O Gārgī, Brahmans call the Imperishable (akṣara). It is not coarse, not fine, not short, not long, not glowing [like fire], not adhesive [like water], without shadow and without darkness, without air and without space, without stickiness, (intangible),1 odorless, tasteless, without eye, without ear, without voice, without wind, without energy, without breath, without mouth, (without personal or family name, unaging, undying, without fear, immortal, stainless, not uncovered, not covered),1 without measure, without inside and without outside.

  • It consumes nothing soever.
  • No one soever consumes it.

9. Verily, O Gārgī, at the command of that Imperishable the sun and the moon stand apart. Verily, O Gārgī, at the command of that Imperishable the earth and the sky stand Edition: current; Page: [119] apart. Verily, O Gārgī, at the command of that Imperishable the moments, the hours, the days, the nights, the fortnights, the months, the seasons, and the years stand apart. Verily, O Gārgī, at the command of that Imperishable some rivers flow from the snowy mountains to the east, others to the west, in whatever direction each flows. Verily, O Gārgī, at the command of that Imperishable men praise those who give, the gods are desirous of a sacrificer, and the fathers [are desirous] of the Manes-sacrifice.

10. Verily, O Gārgī, if one performs sacrifices and worship and undergoes austerity in this world for many thousands of years, but without knowing that Imperishable, limited indeed is that [work] of his. Verily, O Gārgī, he who departs from this world without knowing that Imperishable is pitiable. But, O Gārgī, he who departs from this world knowing that Imperishable is a Brahman.

11. Verily, O Gārgī, that Imperishable is the unseen Seer, the unheard Hearer, the unthought Thinker, the ununderstood Understander. Other than It there is naught that sees. Other than It there is naught that hears. Other than It there is naught that thinks. Other than It there is naught that understands. Across this Imperishable, O Gārgī, is space woven, warp and woof.’

12. She said: ‘Venerable Brahmans, you may think it a great thing if you escape from this man with [merely] making a bow. Not one of you will surpass him in discussions about Brahma.’

Thereupon [Gārgī] Vācaknavī held her peace.

Ninth Brāhmaṇa

Regressus of the numerous gods to the unitary Brahma

1. Then Vidagdha Śākalya questioned him. ‘How many gods are there, Yājñavalkya?’

He answered in accord with the following Nivid (invocationary formula): ‘As many as are mentioned in the Nivid of the Hymn to All the Gods, namely, three hundred and three, and three thousand and three [=3,306].’

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‘Yes,’ said he, ‘but just how many gods are there, Yājñavalkya?’

‘Thirty-three.’

‘Yes,’ said he, ‘but just how many gods are there, Yājñavalkya?’

‘Six.’

‘Yes,’ said he, ‘but just how many gods are there, Yājñavalkya?’

‘Three.’

‘Yes,’ said he, ‘but just how many gods are there, Yājñavalkya?’

‘Two.’

‘Yes,’ said he, ‘but just how many gods are there, Yājñavalkya?’

‘One and a half.’

‘Yes,’ said he, ‘but just how many gods are there, Yājñavalkya?’

‘One.’

‘Yes,’ said he, ‘which are those three hundred and three, and those three thousand and three?’

2. He [i.e. Yājñavalkya] said: ‘Those are only their powers (mahiman). There are just thirty-three gods.’

‘Which are those thirty-three?’

‘Eight Vasus, eleven Rudras, twelve Ādityas. Those are thirty-one. Indra and Prajāpati make thirty-three.’

3. ‘Which are the Vasus?’

‘Fire, earth, wind, atmosphere, sun, sky, moon, and stars. These are Vasus, for upon them this excellent (vasu) world is set, (for they give a dwelling (vāsayante) to the world).1 Therefore they are called Vasus.’

4. ‘Which are the Rudras?’

‘These ten breaths in a person, and the self as the eleventh. When they go out from this mortal body, they make us lament. So, because they make us lament (√rud), therefore they are Rudras.’

5. ‘Which are the Ādityas?’

‘Verily, the twelve months of the year. These are Ādityas, for they go carrying along this whole world. Since they go Edition: current; Page: [121] (yanti) carrying along (ā-dā) this whole world, therefore they are called Ādityas.’

6. ‘Which is Indra? Which is Prajāpati?’

‘The thunder, verily, is Indra. The sacrifice is Prajāpati.’

‘Which is the thunder?’

‘The thunderbolt.’

‘Which is the sacrifice?’

‘The sacrificial animals.’

7. ‘Which are the six [gods]?’

‘Fire, earth, wind, atmosphere, sun, and sky. These are the six, for the whole world is these six.’

8. ‘Which are the three gods?’

‘They, verily, are the three worlds, for in them all these gods exist.’

‘Which are the two gods?’

‘Food and breath.’

‘Which is the one and a half?’

‘This one here who purifies [i. e. the wind].’

9. Then they say: ‘Since he who purifies is just like one, how then is he one and a half?’

‘Because in him this whole world did prosper (adhyārdhnot). Therefore he is one and a half (adhyardha).’

‘Which is the one god?’

‘Breath,’ said he. ‘They call him Brahma, the Yon (tya).’

Eight different Persons and their corresponding divinities

10. [Śākalya said:] ‘Verily, he who knows that Person whose abode is the earth, whose world is fire, whose light is mind, who is the last source of every soul—he, verily, would be a knower, O Yājñavalkya.’

[Yājñavalkya said:] ‘Verily, I know that Person, the last source of every soul, of whom you speak. This very person who is in the body is He. Tell me, Śākalya, who is his god?’

‘The Immortal,’ said he.

11. [Śākalya said:] ‘Verily, he who knows that Person whose abode is desire, whose world is the heart, whose light is mind, who is the last source of every soul—he, verily, would be a knower, O Yājñavalkya.’

[Yājñavalkya said:] ‘Verily, I know that Person, the last Edition: current; Page: [122] source of every soul, of whom you speak. This very person who is made of desire is He. Tell me, Śākalya, who is his god?’

‘Women,’ said he.

12. [Śākalya said:] ‘Verily, he who knows that Person whose abode is forms (rūpa), whose world is the eye, whose light is mind, who is the last source of every soul he, verily, would be a knower, O Yājñavalkya.’

‘Verily, I know that Person, the last source of every soul, of whom you speak. That very person who is in the sun is He. Tell me, Śākalya, who is his god?’

‘Truth,’ said he.

13. [Śākalya said:] ‘Verily, he who knows that Person whose abode is space (ākāśa), whose world is the ear, whose light is mind, who is the last source of every soul—he, verily, would be a knower, O Yājñavalkya.’

‘Verily, I know that Person, the last source of every soul, of whom you speak. This very person who is in hearing and who is in echo is He. Tell me, Śākalya, who is his god?’

‘The quarters of heaven,’ said he.

14. [Śākalya said:] ‘Verily, he who knows that Person whose abode is darkness (tamas), whose world is the heart, whose light is mind, who is the last source of every soul—he, verily, would be a knower, O Yājñavalkya.’

‘Verily, I know that Person, the last source of every soul, of whom you speak. This very person who is made of shadow is He. Tell me, Śākalya, who is his god?’

‘Death,’ said he.

15. [Śākalya said:] ‘Verily, he who knows that Person whose abode is forms (rūpa), whose world is the eye, whose light is mind, who is the last source of every soul—he, verily, would be a knower, O Yājñavalkya.’

‘Verily, I know that Person, the last source of every soul, of whom you speak. This very person who is in the mirror is He. Tell me, Śākalya, who is his god?’

‘Life (asu),’ said he.

16. [Śākalya said:] ‘Verily, he who knows that Person whose abode is water, whose world is the heart, whose light is mind, who is the last source of every soul—he, verily, would be a knower, O Yājñavalkya.’

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‘Verily, I know that Person, the last source of every soul, of whom you speak. This very person who is in the waters is He. Tell me, Śākalya, who is his god?’

‘Varuṇa,’ said he.

17. [Śākalya said:] ‘Verily, he who knows that Person whose abode is semen, whose world is the heart, whose light is mind, who is the last source of every soul—he, verily, would be a knower, O Yājñavalkya.’

‘Verily, I know that Person, the last source of every soul, of whom you speak. This very person who is made of a son is He. Tell me, Śākalya, who is his god?’

‘Prajāpati,’ said he.

18. ‘Śākalya,’ said Yājñavalkya, ‘have those Brahmans made you their coal-destroyer?’1

Five directions in space, their regent gods, and their bases

19. ‘Yājñavalkya,’ said Śākalya, ‘by knowing what Brahma is it that you have talked down the Brahmans of the Kurupañcālas?’

‘I know the quarters of heaven together with their gods and their bases.’

‘Since you know the quarters of heaven together with their gods and their bases, [20] what divinity have you in this eastern quarter?’

‘The sun.’

‘That sun—on what is it based?’

‘On the eye.’

‘And on what is the eye based?’

‘On appearance, for with the eye one sees appearances.’

‘And on what are appearances based?’

‘On the heart,’ he said, ‘for with the heart one knows appearances, for on the heart alone appearances are based.’

‘Quite so, Yājñavalkya.’

21. [Śākalya said:] ‘What divinity have you in this southern (dakṣiṇa) quarter?’

‘Yama.’

‘That Yama—on what is he based?’

‘On sacrifice.’

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‘And on what is sacrifice based?’

‘On gifts to the priests (dakṣiṇā).’

‘And on what are the gifts to the priests based?’

‘On faith, for when one has faith, then one gives gifts to the priests. Verily, on faith the gifts to the priests are based.’

‘On what is faith based?’

‘On the heart,’ he said, ‘for with the heart one knows faith. Verily, on the heart alone faith is based.’

‘Quite so, Yājñavalkya.’

22. [Śākalya said:] ‘What divinity have you in this western quarter?’

‘Varuṇa.’

‘That Varuṇa—on what is he based?’

‘On water.’

‘And on what is water based?’

‘On semen.’

‘And on what is semen based?’

‘On the heart. Therefore they say of a son who is just like his father, “He has slipped out from his heart, as it were. He is built out of his heart.” For on the heart alone semen is based.’

‘Quite so, Yājñavalkya.’

23. [Śākalya said:] ‘What divinity have you in this northern quarter?’

‘Soma.’

‘That Soma—on what is he based?’

‘On the Dīkshā [initiatory] rite.’

‘And on what is the Dīkshā rite based?’

‘On truth. Therefore they say to one who is initiated, “Speak the truth!” For on truth alone the Dīkshā rite is based.’

‘And on what is truth based?’

‘On the heart,’ he said, ‘for with the heart one knows truth. Verily, on the heart alone truth is based.’

‘Quite so, Yājñavalkya.’

24. [Śākalya said:] ‘What divinity have you in this fixed quarter [i. e. the zenith]?’

‘The god Agni.’

‘That Agni—on what is he based?’

‘On speech.’

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‘And on what is speech based?’

‘On the heart.’

‘And on what is the heart based?’

25. ‘You idiot,’ said Yājñavalkya, ‘that you will think that it could be anywhere else than in ourselves! for if it were anywhere else than in ourselves, the dogs might eat it or the birds might tear it to pieces.’

The Soul, the Person taught in the Upanishads

26. ‘On what are you and your soul (ātman) based?’

‘On the in-breath (prāṇa).’

‘And on what is the in-breath based?’

‘On the out-breath (apāna).’

‘And on what is the out-breath based?’

‘On the diffused breath (vyāna).’

‘And on what is the diffused breath based?’

‘On the up-breath (udāna).’

‘And on what is the up-breath based?’

‘On the middle [or equalizing] breath (samāna).’

‘That Soul (Ātman) is not this, it is not that (neti, neti). It is unseizable, for it is not seized. It is indestructible, for it is not destroyed. It is unattached, for it does not attach itself. It is unbound. It does not tremble. It is not injured.

These1 are the eight abodes, the eight worlds, the eight gods, the eight persons. He who plucks apart and puts together these persons and passes beyond them—that is the Person taught in the Upanishads about whom I ask you.

  • If him to me ye will not tell,
  • Your head indeed will then fall off.’
  • But him Śākalya did not know,
  • And so indeed his head fell off.

Indeed, robbers carried off his bones, thinking they were something else.

Man, a tree growing from Brahma

27. Then he [i.e. Yājñavalkya] said: ‘Venerable Brahmans, let him of you that desires question me. Or do ye all question Edition: current; Page: [126] me. Or I will question him of you that desires [to be questioned]; or I will question all of you.’

Those Brahmans, however, durst not.

28. Then he [i.e. Yājñavalkya] questioned them with these verses:—

    • As a tree of the forest,
    • Just so, surely, is man.
    • His hairs are leaves,
    • His skin the outer bark.
    • From his skin blood,
    • Sap from the bark flows forth.
    • From him when pierced there comes forth
    • A stream, as from the tree when struck.
    • His pieces of flesh are under-layers of wood.
    • The fibre is muscle-like, strong.
    • The bones are the wood within.
    • The marrow is made resembling pith.
    • A tree, when it is felled, grows up
    • From the root, more new again;
    • A mortal, when cut down by death—
    • From what root does he grow up?1
    • Say not ‘from semen,’
    • For that is produced from the living,
    • As the tree, forsooth, springing from seed,
    • Clearly arises without having died.
    • If with its roots they should pull up
    • The tree, it would not come into being again.
    • A mortal, when cut down by death—
    • From what root does he grow up?
    • When born, indeed, he is not born [again].
    • Who would again beget him?
    • Brahma is knowledge, is bliss,
    • The final goal of the giver of offerings,
    • Of him, too, who stands still and knows It.
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FOURTH ADHYĀYA

First Brāhmaṇa

King Janaka instructed by Yājñavalkya: six partial definitions of Brahma

1. Janaka, [king] of Videha, was seated. Yājñavalkya came up. To him he said: ‘Yājñavalkya, for what purpose have you come? Because you desire cattle or subtle disputations?’

‘Indeed, for both, your Majesty,’ he said.

2. ‘Let us hear what anybody may have told you,’ [continued Yājñavalkya].

‘Jitvan Śailini told me: “Brahma, verily, is speech (vāc),” ’ [said Janaka].

‘As a man might say that he had a mother, that he had a father, that he had a teacher,1 so did that Śailina say, “Brahma, verily, is speech.” For he might have thought (iti), “What can one have who can not speak?” But did he tell you Its seat and support?’

‘He did not tell me.’

‘Forsooth, your Majesty, that is a one-legged [Brahma].’

‘Verily, Yājñavalkya, do you here tell us.’

‘Its seat is just speech; Its support, space (akāśa). One should worship It as intelligence (prajñā).’

‘What is Its quality of intelligence, Yājñavalkya?’

‘Just speech, your Majesty,’ said he. ‘Verily, by speech, your Majesty, a friend is recognized. By speech alone, your Majesty, the Rig-Veda, the Yajur-Veda, the Sāma-Veda, the [Hymns] of the Atharvans and Aṅgirases,2 Legends (itihāsa), Ancient Lore (purāṇa), Sciences (vidyā), Mystic Doctrines (upaniṣad), Verses (śloka), Aphorisms (sūtra), Explanations (anuvyākhyāna), Commentaries (vyākhyāna), what is offered in sacrifice and as oblation, food and drink, this world and the other, and all beings are known. The highest Brahma, your Majesty, is in truth speech. Speech does not desert him Edition: current; Page: [128] who, knowing this, worships it as such. All things run unto him. He, having become a god, goes even to the gods.’

‘I will give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an elephant,’ said Janaka, [king] of Videha.

Yājñavalkya replied: ‘My father thought that without having instructed one should not accept.’

3. ‘Let us hear what anybody may have told you,’ [continued Yājñavalkya].

‘Udaṅka Śaulbāyana told me: “Brahma, verily, is the breath of life (prāṇa).” ’

‘As a man might say that he had a mother, that he had a father, that he had a teacher, so did that Śaulbāyana say, “Brahma is the breath of life.” For he might have thought, “What can one have who is without the breath of life?” But did he tell you Its seat and support?’

‘He did not tell me.’

‘Forsooth, your Majesty, that is a one-legged [Brahma].’

‘Verily, Yājñavalkya, do you here tell us.’

‘Its seat is just the breath of life; Its support, space. One should worship It as the dear (priya).’

‘What is Its dearness, Yājñavalkya?’

‘The breath of life itself, your Majesty,’ said he. ‘Verily, out of love for the breath of life, your Majesty, one has sacrifice offered for him for whom one should not offer sacrifice, one accepts from him from whom one should not accept. Out of love of just the breath of life, your Majesty, there arises fear of being killed wherever one goes. The highest Brahma, your Majesty, is in truth the breath of life. The breath of life leaves not him who, knowing this, worships it as such. All things run unto him. He, having become a god, goes even to the gods.’

‘I will give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an elephant,’ said Janaka, [king] of Videha.

Yājñavalkya replied: ‘My father thought that without having instructed one should not accept.’

4. ‘Let us hear what anybody may have told you,’ [continued Yājñavalkya].

‘Barku Vārshṇa told me: “Brahma, verily, is sight.” ’

‘As a man might say that he had a mother, that he had Edition: current; Page: [129] a father, that he had a teacher, so did that Vārshṇa say, “Brahma is sight (cakṣu).” For he might have thought, “What can one have who can not see?” But did he tell you Its seat and support?’

‘He did not tell me.’

‘Forsooth, your Majesty, that is a one-legged [Brahma].’

‘Verily, Yājñavalkya, do you here tell us.’

‘Its seat is just sight; Its support, space. One should worship It as the true (satya).’

‘What is Its truthfulness, Yājñavalkya?’

‘Sight alone, your Majesty,’ said he. ‘Verily, your Majesty, when they say to a man who sees with his eyes, “Have you seen?” and he says, “I have seen,” that is the truth. Verily, your Majesty, the highest Brahma is sight. Sight leaves not him who, knowing this, worships it as such. All things run unto him. He, becoming a god, goes to the gods.’

‘I will give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an elephant,’ said Janaka, [king] of Videha.

Yājñavalkya replied: ‘My father thought that without having instructed one should not accept.’

5. ‘Let us hear what anybody may have told you,’ [continued Yājñavalkya].

‘Gardabhīvipīta Bhāradvāja told me: “Brahma, verily, is hearing.” ’

‘As a man might say that he had a mother, that he had a father, that he had a teacher, so did that Bhāradvāja say, “Brahma is hearing.” For he might have thought, “What can one have who can not hear?” But did he tell you Its seat and support?’

‘He did not tell me.’

‘Forsooth, your Majesty, that is a one-legged [Brahma].’

‘Verily, Yājñavalkya, do you here tell us.’

‘Its seat is just hearing; Its support, space. One should worship It as the endless (ananta).’

‘What is Its endlessness, Yājñavalkya?’

‘Just the quarters of heaven, your Majesty,’ said he. ‘Therefore, verily, your Majesty, to whatever quarter one goes, he does not come to the end of it, for the quarters of heaven are endless. Verily, your Majesty, the quarters of heaven are Edition: current; Page: [130] hearing. Verily, your Majesty, the highest Brahma is hearing. Hearing does not desert him who, knowing this, worships it as such. All things run unto him. He, becoming a god, goes to the gods.’

‘I will give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an elephant,’ said Janaka, [king] of Videha.

Yājñavalkya replied: ‘My father thought that without having instructed one should not accept.’

6. ‘Let us hear what anybody may have told you,’ [continued Yājñavalkya].

‘Satyakāma Jābāla told me: “Brahma, verily, is mind.” ’

‘As a man might say that he had a mother, that he had a father, that he had a teacher, so did that Jābāla say, “Brahma is mind.” For he might have thought, “What can one have who is without a mind?” But did he tell you Its seat and support?’

‘He did not tell me.’

‘Forsooth, your Majesty, that is a one-legged [Brahma].’

‘Verily, Yājñavalkya, do you here tell us.’

‘Its seat is just the mind; Its support, space. One should worship It as the blissful (ānanda).’

‘What is Its blissfulness, Yājñavalkya?’

‘Just the mind, your Majesty,’ said he. ‘Verily, your Majesty, by the mind one betakes himself to a woman. A son like himself is born of her. He is bliss. Verily, your Majesty, the highest Brahma is mind. Mind does not desert him who, knowing this, worships it as such. All things run unto him. He, becoming a god, goes to the gods.’

‘I will give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an elephant,’ said Janaka, [king] of Videha.

Yājñavalkya replied: ‘My father thought that without having instructed one should not accept.’

7. ‘Let us hear what anybody may have told you,’ [continued Yājñavalkya].

‘Vidagdha Śākalya told me: “Brahma, verily, is the heart.” ’

‘As a man might say that he had a mother, that he had a father, that he had a teacher, so did that Śākalya say, “Brahma is the heart.” For he might have thought, “What Edition: current; Page: [131] can one have who is without a heart?” But did he not tell you Its seat and support?’

‘He did not tell me.’

‘Forsooth, your Majesty, that is a one-legged [Brahma].’

‘Verily, Yājñavalkya, do you here tell us.’

‘Its seat is just the heart; Its support, space. One should worship It as the steadfast (sthiti).’

‘What is Its steadfastness, Yājñavalkya?’

‘Just the heart, your Majesty,’ said he. ‘Verily, your Majesty, the heart is the seat of all things. Verily, your Majesty, the heart is the support (pratiṣṭhā) of all things, for on the heart alone, your Majesty, all things are established (pratiṣṭhita). Verily, your Majesty, the highest Brahma is the heart. The heart does not leave him, who, knowing this, worship it as such. All things run unto him. He, becoming a god, goes to the gods.’

‘I will give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an elephant,’ said Janaka, [king] of Videha.

Yājñavalkya replied: ‘My father thought that without having instructed one should not accept.’

Second Brāhmaṇa

Concerning the soul, its bodily and universal relations

1. Janaka, [king] of Videha, descending from his cushion and approaching, said: ‘Adoration to you, Yājñavalkya. Do you instruct me.’

He [i.e. Yājñavalkya] said: ‘Verily, as a king about to go on a great journey would prepare a chariot or a ship, even so you have a soul (ātman) prepared with these mystic doctrines (upaniṣad). So, being at the head of a troop, and wealthy, learned in the Vedas, and instructed in mystic doctrines, whither, when released hence, will you go?’

‘That I know not, noble Sir—whither I shall go.’

‘Then truly I will tell you that—whither you will go.’

‘Tell me, noble Sir.’

2. ‘Indha (i.e. the Kindler) by name is this person here in the right eye. Him, verily, who is that Indha people call “Indra” Edition: current; Page: [132] cryptically, for the gods are fond of the cryptic, as it were, and dislike the evident.1

3. Now that which has the form of a person in the left eye is his wife, Virāj. Their meeting-place [literally, their common praise, or concord] is the space in the heart. Their food is the red lump in the heart. Their covering is the net-like work in the heart. The path that they go is that vein which goes upward from the heart. Like a hair divided a thousandfold, so are the veins called hitā, which are established within the heart. Through these flows that which flows on [i.e. the food]. Therefore that [soul which is composed of Indha and Virāj] is, as it were, an eater of finer food than is this bodily self.2

4. The eastern breaths are his eastern quarter. The southern breaths are his southern quarter. The western breaths are his western quarter. The northern breaths are his northern quarter. The upper breaths are his upper quarter [i.e. the zenith]. The lower breaths are his lower quarter [i.e. the nadir]. All the breaths are all his quarters.

But the Soul (Ātman) is not this, it is not that (neti, neti). It is unseizable, for it cannot be seized. It is indestructible, for it cannot be destroyed. It is unattached, for it does not attach itself. It is unbound. It does not tremble. It is not injured.

Verily, Janaka, you have reached fearlessness.’—Thus spake Yājñavalkya.

Janaka, [king] of Videha, said: ‘May fearlessness come unto you, noble Sir, you who make us to know fearlessness. Adoration to you! Here are the Videhas, here am I [as your servants].’

Third Brāhmaṇa

The light of man is the soul

1. Yājñavalkya came to Janaka, [king] of Videha. He thought to himself: ‘I will not talk.’3

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But [once]1 when Janaka, [king] of Videha, and Yājñavalkya were discussing together at an Agnihotra, Yājñavalkya granted the former a boon. He chose asking whatever question he wished. He granted it to him. So [now] the king, [speaking] first, asked him:

2. ‘Yājñavalkya, what light does a person here have?’

‘He has the light of the sun, O king,’ he said, ‘for with the sun, indeed, as his light one sits, moves around, does his work, and returns.’

‘Quite so, Yājñavalkya.

3. But when the sun has set, Yājñavalkya, what light does a person here have?’

‘The moon, indeed, is his light,’ said he, ‘for with the moon, indeed, as his light one sits, moves around, does his work, and returns.’

‘Quite so, Yājñavalkya.

4. But when the sun has set, and the moon has set, what light does a person here have?’

‘Fire, indeed, is his light,’ said he, ‘for with fire, indeed, as his light one sits, moves around, does his work, and returns.’

‘Quite so, Yājñavalkya.

5. But when the sun has set, Yājñavalkya, and the moon has set, and the fire has gone out, what light does a person here have?’

‘Speech, indeed, is his light,’ said he, ‘for with speech, indeed, as his light one sits, moves around, does his work, and returns. Therefore, verily, O king, where one does not discern even his own hands, when a voice is raised, then one goes straight towards it.’

‘Quite so, Yājñavalkya.

6. But when the sun has set, Yājñavalkya, and the moon has set, and the fire has gone out, and speech is hushed, what light does a person here have?’

‘The soul (ātman), indeed, is his light,’ said he, ‘for with the soul, indeed, as his light one sits, moves around, does his work, and returns.’

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The various conditions of the soul

7. ‘Which (katama) is the soul?’

‘The person here who among the senses is made of knowledge, who is the light in the heart. He, remaining the same, goes along both worlds, appearing to think, appearing to move about, for upon becoming asleep he transcends this world and the forms of death.

8. Verily, this person, by being born and obtaining a body, is joined with evils. When he departs, on dying, he leaves evils behind.

9. Verily, there are just two conditions of this person: the condition of being in this world and the condition of being in the other world. There is an intermediate third condition, namely, that of being in sleep. By standing in this intermediate condition one sees both those conditions, namely being in this world and being in the other world. Now whatever the approach is to the condition of being in the other world, by making that approach one sees the evils [of this world] and the joys [of yonder world].

The state of dreaming

When one goes to sleep, he takes along the material (mātrā) of this all-containing world, himself tears it apart, himself builds it up, and dreams by his own brightness, by his own light. Then this person becomes self-illuminated.

10. There are no chariots there, no spans, no roads. But he projects from himself chariots, spans, roads. There are no blisses there, no pleasures, no delights. But he projects from himself blisses, pleasures, delights. There are no tanks there, no lotus-pools, no streams. But he projects from himself tanks, lotus-pools, streams. For he is a creator.

11. On this point there are the following verses:—

  • Striking down in sleep what is bodily,
  • Sleepless he looks down upon the sleeping [senses].
  • Having taken to himself light, there returns to his place
  • The golden person, the one spirit (haṁsa).
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12. Guarding his low nest with the breath,

The Immortal goes forth out of the nest.

He goes where’er he pleases—the immortal,

The golden person, the one spirit (haṁsa).

13. In the state of sleep going aloft and alow,

A god, he makes many forms for himself—

Now, as it were, enjoying pleasure with women,

Now, as it were, laughing, and even beholding fearful sights.

  • 14. People see his pleasure-ground;
  • Him no one sees at all.

“Therefore one should not wake him suddenly,” they say. Hard is the curing for a man to whom He does not return.

Now some people say: “That is just his waking state, for whatever things he sees when awake, those too he sees when asleep.” [This is not so, for] there [i.e. in sleep] the person is self-illuminated.’

[Janaka said:] ‘I will give you, noble Sir, a thousand [cows]. Declare what is higher than this, for my release [from transmigration].’

15. ‘Having had enjoyment in this state of deep sleep, having traveled around and seen good and bad, he hastens again, according to the entrance and place of origin, back to sleep. Whatever he sees there [i.e. in the state of deep sleep], he is not followed by it, for this person is without attachments.’

[Janaka said:] ‘Quite so, Yājñavalkya. I will give you, noble Sir, a thousand [cows]. Declare what is higher than this, for my release.’

16. ‘Having had enjoyment in this state of sleep, having traveled around and seen good and bad, he hastens again, according to the entrance and place of origin, back to the state of waking. Whatever he sees there [i.e. in dreaming sleep], he is not followed by it, for this person is without attachments.’

[Janaka said:] ‘Quite so, Yājñavalkya. I will give you, noble Sir, a thousand [cows]. Declare what is higher than this, for my release.’

17. ‘Having had enjoyment in this state of waking, having traveled around and seen good and evil, he hastens again, Edition: current; Page: [136] according to the entrance and place of origin, back to dreaming sleep.1

18. As a great fish goes along both banks of a river, both the hither and the further, just so this person goes along both these conditions, the condition of sleeping and the condition of waking.

The soul in deep, dreamless sleep

19. As a falcon, or an eagle, having flown around here in space, becomes weary, folds its wings, and is borne down to its nest, just so this person hastens to that state where, asleep, he desires no desires and sees no dream.

20. Verily, a person has those arteries called hitā; as a hair subdivided a thousandfold, so minute are they, full of white, blue, yellow, green, and red. Now when people seem to be killing him, when they seem to be overpowering him, when an elephant seems to be tearing him to pieces,2 when he seems to be falling into a hole—in these circumstances he is imagining through ignorance the very fear which he sees when awake. When he imagines that he is a god, as it were, that he is a king, as it were, or “I am this world-all,” that is his highest world.

21. This, verily, is that form of his which is beyond desires, free from evil, without fear. As a man, when in the embrace of a beloved wife, knows nothing within or without, so this person, when in the embrace of the intelligent Soul, knows nothing within or without. Verily, that is his [true] form in which his desire is satisfied, in which the Soul is his desire, in which he is without desire and without sorrow.

22. There a father becomes not a father; a mother, not a mother; the worlds, not the worlds; the gods, not the gods; the Vedas, not the Vedas; a thief, not a thief. There the destroyer of an embryo becomes not the destroyer of an embryo3; a Cāṇḍāla [the son of a Śūdra father and a Brahman mother] is not a Cāṇḍāla; a Paulkasa [the son of a Śūdra father and a Kshatriya mother] is not a Paulkasa; a mendicant Edition: current; Page: [137] is not a mendicant; an ascetic is not an ascetic. He is not followed by good, he is not followed by evil, for then he has passed beyond all sorrows of the heart.

23. Verily, while he does not there see [with the eyes], he is verily seeing, though he does not see (what is [usually] to be seen)1; for there is no cessation of the seeing of a seer, because of his imperishability [as a seer]. It is not, however, a second thing, other than himself and separate, that he may see.

24. Verily, while he does not there smell, he is verily smelling, though he does not smell (what is [usually] to be smelled)1; for there is no cessation of the smelling of a smeller, because of his imperishability [as a smeller]. It is not, however, a second thing, other than himself and separate, that he may smell.

25. Verily, while he does not there taste, he is verily tasting, though he does not taste (what is [usually] to be tasted)1; for there is no cessation of the tasting of a taster, because of his imperishability [as a taster]. It is not, however, a second thing, other than himself and separate, that he may taste.

26. Verily, while he does not there speak, he is verily speaking, though he does not speak (what is [usually] to be spoken)1; for there is no cessation of the speaking of a speaker, because of his imperishability [as a speaker]. It is not, however, a second thing, other than himself and separate, to which he may speak.

27. Verily, while he does not there hear, he is verily hearing, though he does not hear (what is [usually] to be heard)1; for there is no cessation of the hearing of a hearer, because of his imperishability [as a hearer]. It is not, however, a second thing, other than himself and separate, which he may hear.

28. Verily, while he does not there think, he is verily thinking, though he does not think (what is [usually] to be thought)1; for there is no cessation of the thinking of a thinker, because of his imperishability [as a thinker]. It is not, however, a second thing, other than himself and separate, of which he may think.

29. Verily, while he does not there touch, he is verily touching, though he does not touch (what is [usually] to be touched)1; for there is no cessation of the touching of a toucher, because of his imperishability [as a toucher]. It is not, however, a second thing, other than himself and separate, which he may touch.

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30. Verily, while he does not there know, he is verily knowing, though he does not know (what is [usually] to be known)1; for there is no cessation of the knowing of a knower, because of his imperishability [as a knower]. It is not, however, a second thing, other than himself and separate, which he may know.

31. Verily where there seems to be another, there the one might see the other; the one might smell the other; the one might taste the other; the one might speak to the other; the one might hear the other; the one might think of the other; the one might touch the other; the one might know the other.2

32. An ocean, a seer alone without duality, becomes he whose world is Brahma, O King!’—thus Yājñavalkya instructed him. ‘This is a man’s highest path. This is his highest achievement. This is his highest world. This is his highest bliss. On a part of just this bliss other creatures have their living.

33. If one is fortunate among men and wealthy, lord over others, best provided with all human enjoyments—that is the highest bliss of men. Now a hundredfold the bliss of men is one bliss of those who have won the fathers’ world. Now a hundredfold the bliss of those who have won the fathers’ world is one bliss in the Gandharva-world. A hundredfold the bliss in the Gandharva-world is one bliss of the gods who gain their divinity by meritorious works. A hundredfold the bliss of the gods by works is one bliss of the gods by birth and of him who is learned in the Vedas, who is without crookedness, and who is free from desire. A hundredfold the bliss of the gods by birth is one bliss in the Prajāpati-world and of him who is learned in the Vedas, who is without crookedness, and who is free from desire. A hundredfold the bliss in the Prajāpati-world is one bliss in the Brahma-world and of him who is learned in the Vedas, who is without crookedness, and who is free from desire. This truly is the highest world. This is the Brahma-world, O king.’—Thus spake Yājñavalkya.

[Janaka said:] ‘I will give you, noble Sir, a thousand [cows]. Speak further than this, for my release.’

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Then Yājñavalkya feared, thinking: ‘This intelligent king has driven me out of every corner.’1

34. [He said:] ‘Having had enjoyment in this state of sleep, having traveled around and seen good and bad, he hastens again, according to the entrance and place of origin, back to the state of waking.2

The soul at death

35. As a heavily loaded cart goes creaking, just so this bodily self, mounted by the intelligent Self, goes groaning when one is breathing one’s last.

36. When he comes to weakness—whether he come to weakness through old age or through disease—this person frees himself from these limbs just as a mango, or a fig, or a berry releases itself from its bond; and he hastens again, according to the entrance and place of origin, back to life.

37. As noblemen, policemen, chariot-drivers, village-heads wait with food, drink, and lodgings for a king who is coming, and cry: “Here he comes! Here he comes!” so indeed do all things wait for him who has this knowledge and cry: “Here is Brahma coming! Here is Brahma coming!”

38. As noblemen, policemen, chariot-drivers, village-heads gather around a king who is about to depart, just so do all the breaths gather around the soul at the end, when one is breathing one’s last.

Fourth Brāhmaṇa

1. When this self comes to weakness and to confusedness of mind, as it were, then the breaths gather around him. He takes to himself those particles of energy and descends into the heart. When the person in the eye turns away, back [to the sun], then one becomes non-knowing of forms.

2. “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not see.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not smell.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not taste.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not speak.” “He is becoming one,” Edition: current; Page: [140] they say; “he does not hear.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not think.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not touch.” “He is becoming one,” they say; “he does not know.” The point of his heart becomes lighted up. By that light the self departs, either by the eye, or by the head, or by other bodily parts. After him, as he goes out, the life (prāṇa) goes out. After the life, as it goes out, all the breaths (prāṇa) go out. He becomes one with intelligence. What has intelligence departs with him. His knowledge and his works and his former intelligence [i.e. instinct] lay hold of him.

The soul of the unreleased after death

3. Now as a caterpillar, when it has come to the end of a blade of grass, in taking the next step draws itself together towards it, just so this soul in taking the next step strikes down this body, dispels its ignorance and draws itself together [for making the transition].

4. As a goldsmith, taking a piece of gold, reduces it to another newer and more beautiful form, just so this soul, striking down this body and dispelling its ignorance, makes for itself another newer and more beautiful form like that either of the fathers, or of the Gandharvas, or of the gods, or of Prajāpati, or of Brahma, or of other beings.

5. Verily, this soul is Brahma, made of knowledge, of mind, of breath, of seeing, of hearing, of earth, of water, of wind, of space, of energy and of non-energy, of desire and of non-desire, of anger and of non-anger, of virtuousness and of non-virtuousness. It is made of everything. This is what is meant by the saying “made of this, made of that.”

According as one acts, according as one conducts himself, so does he become. The doer of good becomes good. The doer of evil becomes evil. One becomes virtuous by virtuous action, bad by bad action.

But people say: “A person is made [not of acts, but] of desires only.” [In reply to this I say:] As is his desire, such is his resolve; as is his resolve, such the action he performs; what action (karma) he performs, that he procures for himself.1

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6. On this point there is this verse:—

Where one’s mind is attached—the inner self

Goes thereto with action, being attached to it alone.

  • Obtaining the end of his action,
  • Whatever he does in this world,
  • He comes again from that world
  • To this world of action.1

—So the man who desires.

The soul of the released

Now the man who does not desire.—He who is without desire, who is freed from desire, whose desire is satisfied, whose desire is the Soul—his breaths do not depart. Being very Brahma, he goes to Brahma.

7. On this point there is this verse:—

  • When are liberated all
  • The desires that lodge in one’s heart,
  • Then a mortal becomes immortal!
  • Therein he reaches Brahma!2

As the slough of a snake lies on an ant-hill, dead, cast off, even so lies this body. But this incorporeal, immortal Life (prāṇa) is Brahma indeed, is light indeed.’

‘I will give you, noble Sir, a thousand [cows],’ said Janaka, [king] of Videha.

8. [Yājñavalkya continued:] ‘On this point there are these verses:—

    • The ancient narrow path that stretches far away
    • Has been touched by me, has been found by me.
    • By it the wise, the knowers of Brahma, go up
    • Hence to the heavenly world, released.
    • 9. On it, they say, is white and blue
    • And yellow and green and red.
    • That was the path by Brahma found;
    • By it goes the knower of Brahma, the doer of right (puṇya-kṛt), and every shining one.
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    • 10. Into blind darkness enter they
    • That worship ignorance;
    • Into darkness greater than that, as it were, they
    • That delight in knowledge.1
    • 11. Joyless are those worlds called,2
    • Covered with blind darkness.
    • To them after death go those
    • People that have not knowledge, that are not awakened.3
    • 12. If a person knew the Soul (Ātman),
    • With the thought “I am he!”
    • With what desire, for love of what
    • Would he cling unto the body?

13. He who has found and has awakened to the Soul

That has entered this conglomerate abode—

He is the maker of everything, for he is the creator of all;

The world is his: indeed, he is the world itself.

14. Verily, while we are here we may know this.

If you have known it not, great is the destruction.

Those who know this become immortal,

But others go only to sorrow.

    • 15. If one perceives Him
    • As the Soul, as God (deva), clearly,
    • As the Lord of what has been and of what is to be—
    • One does not shrink away from Him.4
    • 16. That before which the year
    • Revolves with its days—
    • That the gods revere as the light of lights,
    • As life immortal.
    • 17. On whom the five peoples
    • And space are established—
    • Him alone I, the knowing, I, the immortal,
    • Believe to be the Soul, the immortal Brahma.

18. They who know the breathing of the breath,

The seeing of the eye, the hearing of the ear,

(The food of food),5 the thinking of the mind—

They have recognized the ancient, primeval Brahma.

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    • 19. By the mind alone is It to be perceived.
    • There is on earth no diversity.
    • He gets death after death,
    • Who perceives here seeming diversity.
    • 20. As a unity only is It to be looked upon—
    • This indemonstrable, enduring Being,
    • Spotless, beyond space,
    • The unborn Soul, great, enduring.
    • 21. By knowing Him only, a wise
    • Brahman should get for himself intelligence;
    • He should not meditate upon many words,
    • For that is a weariness of speech.

22. Verily, he is the great, unborn Soul, who is this [person] consisting of knowledge among the senses. In the space within the heart lies the ruler of all, the lord of all, the king of all. He does not become greater by good action nor inferior by bad action. He is the lord of all, the overlord of beings, the protector of beings. He is the separating dam for keeping these worlds apart.

Such a one the Brahmans desire to know by repetition of the Vedas, by sacrifices, by offerings, by penance, by fasting. On knowing him, in truth, one becomes an ascetic (muni). Desiring him only as their home, mendicants wander forth.

Verily, because they know this, the ancients desired not offspring, saying: “What shall we do with offspring, we whose is this Soul, this home?” They, verily, rising above the desire for sons and the desire for wealth and the desire for worlds, lived the life of a mendicant. For the desire for sons is the desire for wealth, and the desire for wealth is the desire for worlds; for both these are desires.

That Soul (Ātman) is not this, it is not that (neti, neti). It is unseizable, for it cannot be seized. It is indestructible, for it cannot be destroyed. It is unattached, for it does not attach itself. It is unbound. It does not tremble. It is not injured.

Him [who knows this] these two do not overcome—neither the thought “Hence I did wrong,” nor the thought “Hence I did right.” Verily, he overcomes them both. What he has done and what he has not done do not affect him.

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23. This very [doctrine] has been declared in the verse:—

  • This eternal greatness of a Brahman
  • Is not increased by deeds (karma), nor diminished.
  • One should be familiar with it. By knowing it,
  • One is not stained by evil action.

Therefore, having this knowledge, having become calm, subdued, quiet, patiently enduring, and collected, one sees the Soul just in the soul. One sees everything as the Soul. Evil does not overcome him; he overcomes all evil. Evil does not burn him; he burns all evil. Free from evil, free from impurity, free from doubt, he becomes a Brahman.

This is the Brahma-world, O king,’ said Yājñavalkya.

[Janaka said:] ‘I will give you, noble Sir, the Videhas and myself also to be your slave.’

24. [Yājñavalkya continued:] ‘This is that great, unborn Soul, who eats the food [which people eat], the giver of good. He finds good who knows this.

25. Verily, that great, unborn Soul, undecaying, undying, immortal, fearless, is Brahma. Verily, Brahma is fearless. He who knows this becomes the fearless Brahma.’

Fifth Brāhmaṇa1

The conversation of Yājñavalkya and Maitreyī concerning the pantheistic Soul

1. Now then, Yājñavalkya had two wives, Maitreyī and Kātyāyanī. Of the two, Maitreyī was a discourser on sacred knowledge2 (brahma-vādinī); Kātyāyanī had just (eva) a woman’s knowledge in that matter (tarhi).

Now then, Yājñavalkya was about to commence another mode of life.3

2. ‘Maitreyī!’ said Yājñavalkya, ‘lo, verily, I am about to wander forth4 from this state. Behold! Let me make a final settlement for you and that Kātyāyanī.’

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3. Then spake Maitreyī: ‘If now, Sir, this whole earth filled with wealth were mine, would I now thereby be immortal?’

‘No, no!’ said Yājñavalkya. ‘As the life of the rich, even so would your life be. Of immortality, however, there is no hope through wealth.’

4. Then spake Maitreyī: ‘What should I do with that through which I may not be immortal? What you know, Sir—that, indeed, explain to me.’

5. Then spake Yājñavalkya: ‘Though, verily, you, my lady, were dear to us, you have increased your dearness. Behold, then, lady, I will explain it to you. But, while I am expounding, do you seek to ponder thereon.’

6. Then spake he: ‘Lo, verily, not for love of the husband is a husband dear, but for love of the Soul (Ātman) a husband is dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the wife is a wife dear, but for love of the Soul a wife is dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the sons are sons dear, but for love of the Soul sons are dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the wealth is wealth dear, but for love of the Soul wealth is dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the cattle are cattle dear, but for love of the Soul cattle are dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of Brahmanhood is Brahmanhood dear, but for love of the Soul Brahmanhood is dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of Kshatrahood is Kshatrahood dear, but for love of the Soul Kshatrahood is dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the worlds are the worlds dear, but for love of the Soul the worlds are dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the gods are the gods dear, but for love of the Soul the gods are dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the Vedas are the Vedas dear, but for love of the Soul the Vedas are dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of the beings (bhūta) are beings dear, but for love of the Soul beings are dear.

Lo, verily, not for love of all is all dear, but for love of the Soul all is dear.

Lo, verily, it is the Soul (Ātman) that should be seen, that should be hearkened to, that should be thought on, that should be pondered on, O Maitreyī.

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Lo, verily, in the Soul’s being seen, hearkened to, thought on, understood, this world-all is known.

7. Brahmanhood deserts him who knows Brahmanhood in aught else than the Soul. Kshatrahood deserts him who knows Kshatrahood in aught else than the Soul. The worlds desert him who knows the worlds in aught else than the Soul. The gods desert him who knows the gods in aught else than the Soul. The Vedas desert him who knows the Vedas in aught else than the Soul. Beings desert him who knows beings in aught else than the Soul. Everything deserts him who knows everything in aught else than the Soul. This Brahmanhood, this Kshatrahood, these worlds, these gods, these Vedas, all these beings, everything here is what this Soul is.

8. It is—as, when a drum is being beaten, one would not be able to grasp the external sounds, but by grasping the drum or the beater of the drum the sound is grasped.

9. It is—as, when a conch-shell is being blown, one would not be able to grasp the external sounds, but by grasping the conch-shell or the blower of the conch-shell the sound is grasped.

10. It is—as, when a lute is being played, one would not be able to grasp the external sounds, but by grasping the lute or the player of the lute the sound is grasped.

11. It is—as, from a fire laid with damp fuel, clouds of smoke separately issue forth, so, lo, verily, from this great Being (bhūta) has been breathed forth that which is Rig-Veda, Yajur-Veda, Sāma-Veda, [Hymns] of the Atharvans and Aṅgirases,1 Legend (itihāsa), Ancient Lore (purāṇa), Sciences (vidyā), Mystic Doctrines (upaniṣad), Verses (śloka), Aphorisms (sūtra), Explanations (anuvyākhyāna), Commentaries (vyākhyāna), sacrifice, oblation, food, drink, this world and the other, and all beings. From it, indeed, have all these been breathed forth.

12. It is—as the uniting-place of all waters is the sea, likewise the uniting-place of all touches is the skin; likewise the uniting-place of all tastes is the tongue; likewise the uniting-place of all odors is the nose; likewise the uniting-place of all forms is the eye; likewise the uniting place of all sounds is the ear; likewise the uniting-place of all intentions is the mind; Edition: current; Page: [147] likewise the uniting-place of all knowledges is the heart; likewise the uniting-place of all actions is the hands; likewise the uniting-place of all pleasures is the generative organ; likewise the uniting-place of all evacuations is the anus; likewise the uniting-place of all journeys is the feet; likewise the uniting-place of all Vedas is speech.

13. It is—as is a mass of salt, without inside, without outside, entirely a mass of taste, even so, verily, is this Soul, without inside, without outside, entirely a mass of knowledge.

Arising out of these elements, into them also one vanishes away. After death there is no consciousness (saṁjñā). Thus, lo, say I.’ Thus spake Yājñavalkya.

14. Then said Maitreyī: ‘Herein, indeed, you have caused me, Sir, to arrive at the extreme of bewilderment. Verily, I understand It [i.e. this Ātman] not.’

Then said he: ‘Lo, verily, I speak not bewilderment. Imperishable, lo, verily, is this Soul, and of indestructible quality.

15. For where there is a duality, as it were, there one sees another; there one smells another; there one tastes another; there one speaks to another; there one hears another; there one thinks of another; there one touches another; there one understands another. But where everything has become just one’s own self, then whereby and whom would one see? then whereby and whom would one smell? then whereby and whom would one taste? then whereby and to whom would one speak? then whereby and whom would one hear? then whereby and of whom would one think? then whereby and whom would one touch? then whereby and whom would one understand? whereby would one understand him by means of whom one understands this All?

That Soul (Ātman) is not this, it is not that (neti, neti). It is unseizable, for it can not be seized; indestructible, for it can not be destroyed; unattached, for it does not attach itself; is unbound, does not tremble, is not injured.

Lo, whereby would one understand the understander?

Thus you have the instruction told to you, Maitreyī. Such, lo, indeed, is immortality.’

After speaking thus, Yājñavalkya departed.

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Sixth Brāhmaṇa

The teachers of this doctrine.

1. Now the Line of Tradition (vaṁśa).—

  • (We [received this teaching] from Pautimāshya),1
  • Pautimāshya from Gaupavana,
  • Gaupavana from Pautimāshya,
  • Pautimāshya from Gaupavana,
  • Gaupavana from Kauśika,
  • Kauśika from Kauṇḍinya,
  • Kauṇḍinya from Śāṇḍilya,
  • Śāṇḍilya from Kauśika and Gautama,
  • Gautama [2] from Āgniveśya,
  • Āgniveśya from Gārgya,
  • Gārgya from Gārgya,
  • Gārgya from Gautama,
  • Gautama from Saitava,
  • Saitava from Pārāśaryāyaṇa,
  • Pārāśaryāyaṇa from Gārgyāyaṇa,
  • Gārgyāyaṇa from Uddālakāyana,
  • Uddālakāyana from Jābālāyana,
  • Jābālāyana from Mādhyaṁdināyana,
  • Mādhyaṁdināyana from Saukarāyaṇa,
  • Saukarāyaṇa from Kāshāyaṇa,
  • Kāshāyaṇa from Sāyakāyana,
  • Sāyakāyana from Kauśikāyani,
  • Kauśikāyani [3] from Ghṛitakauśika,
  • Ghṛitakauśika from Pārāśaryāyaṇa,
  • Pārāśaryāyaṇa from Pārāśarya,
  • Pārāśarya from Jātūkarṇya,
  • Jātūkarṇya from Āsurāyaṇa and Yāska,
  • Āsurāyaṇa from Traivani,
  • Traivani from Aupajandhani,
  • Aupajandhani from Āsuri,
  • Āsuri from Bhāradvāja,
  • Bhāradvāja from Ātreya,
  • Ātreya from Māṇṭi,
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  • Māṇṭi from Gautama,
  • Gautama from Gautama,
  • Gautama from Vātsya,
  • Vātsya from Śāṇḍilya,
  • Śāṇḍilya from Kaiśorya Kāpya,
  • Kaiśorya Kāpya from Kumārahārita,
  • Kumārahārita from Gālava,
  • Gālava from Vidarbhīkauṇḍinya,
  • Vidarbhīkauṇḍinya from Vatsanapāt Bābhrava,
  • Vatsanapāt Bābhrava from Pathin Saubhara,
  • Pathin Saubhara from Ayāsya Āṅgirasa,
  • Ayāsya Āṅgirasa from Ābhūti Tvāshṭra,
  • Ābhūti Tvāshṭra from Viśvarūpa Tvāshṭra,
  • Viśvarūpa Tvāshṭra from the two Aśvins,
  • the two Aśvins from Dadhyañc Ātharvaṇa,
  • Dadhyañc Ātharvaṇa from Atharvan Daiva,
  • Atharvan Daiva from Mṛityu Prādhvaṁsana,
  • Mṛityu Prādhvaṁsana from Pradhvaṁsana,
  • Pradhvaṁsana from Eka Ṛishi,
  • Eka Ṛishi from Vipracitti,
  • Vipracitti from Vyashṭi,
  • Vyashṭi from Sanāru,
  • Sanāru from Sanātana,
  • Sanātana from Sanaga,
  • Sanaga from Parameshṭhin,
  • Parameshṭhin from Brahma.

Brahma is the Self-existent (svayam-bhū). Adoration to Brahma!

FIFTH ADHYĀYA

First Brāhmaṇa

The inexhaustible Brahma

Om!

  • The yon is fulness; fulness, this.
  • From fulness, fulness doth proceed.
  • Withdrawing fulness’s fulness off,
  • E’en fulness then itself remains.1
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Om!

‘Brahma is the ether (kha)—the ether primeval, the ether that blows.’ Thus, verily, was the son of Kauravyāyanī wont to say.

This is the knowledge (veda) the Brahmans know. Thereby I know (veda) what is to be known.

Second Brāhmaṇa

The three cardinal virtues

1. The threefold offspring of Prajāpati—gods, men, and devils (asura)—dwelt with their father Prajāpati as students of sacred knowledge (brahmacarya).

Having lived the life of a student of sacred knowledge, the gods said: ‘Speak to us, Sir.’ To them then he spoke this syllable, ‘Da.’ ‘Did you understand?’ ‘We did understand,’ said they. ‘You said to us, “Restrain yourselves (damyata).” ’ ‘Yes (Om)!’ said he. ‘You did understand.’

2. So then the men said to him: ‘Speak to us, Sir.’ To them then he spoke this syllable, ‘Da.’ ‘Did you understand?’ ‘We did understand,’ said they. ‘You said to us, “Give (datta).” ’ ‘Yes (Om)!’ said he. ‘You did understand.’

3. So then the devils said to him: ‘Speak to us, Sir.’ To them then he spoke this syllable, ‘Da.’ ‘Did you understand?’ ‘We did understand,’ said they. ‘You said to us, “Be compassionate (dayadhvam).” ’ ‘Yes (Om)!’ said he. ‘You did understand.’

This same thing does the divine voice here, thunder, repeat: Da! Da! Da! that is, restrain yourselves, give, be compassionate. One should practise this same triad: self-restraint, giving, compassion.

Third Brāhmaṇa

Brahma as the heart

The heart (hṛdayam) is the same as Prajāpati (Lord of Creation). It is Brahma. It is all.

It is trisyllabic—hṛ-da-yam.

hr is one syllable. Both his own people and others bring (√hr) offerings unto him who knows this.

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da is one syllable. Both his own people and others give (√dā) unto him who knows this.

yam is one syllable. To the heavenly world goes (eti [pl. yanti]) he who knows this.

Fourth Brāhmaṇa

Brahma as the Real

This, verily, is That. This, indeed, was That, even the Real. He who knows that wonderful being (yakṣa) as the first-born—namely, that Brahma is the Real—conquers these worlds. Would he be conquered who knows thus that great spirit as the first-born—namely, that Brahma is the Real? [No!] for indeed, Brahma is the Real.

Fifth Brāhmaṇa

The Real, etymologically and cosmologically explained

1. In the beginning this world was just Water. That Water emitted the Real—Brahma [being] the Real—; Brahma, Prajāpati; Prajāpati, the gods. Those gods reverenced the Real (satyam). That is trisyllabic: sa-ti-yam—sa is one syllable, ti is one syllable, yam is one syllable. The first and last syllables are truth (satyam).1 In the middle is falsehood (anṛtam).2 This falsehood is embraced on both sides by truth; it partakes of the nature of truth itself. Falsehood does not injure him who knows this.

2. Yonder sun is the same as that Real. The Person who is there in that orb and the Person who is here in the right eye—these two depend the one upon the other. Through his rays that one depends upon this one; through his vital breaths this one upon that. When one is about to decease, he sees that orb quite clear [i.e. free from rays]; those rays come to him no more.

3. The head of the person who is there in that orb is Bhūr—there is one head, this is one syllable. Bhuvar is the arms—there are two arms, these are two syllables. Svar is the feet—there Edition: current; Page: [152] are two feet, these are two syllables (su-ar). The mystic name (upaniṣad) thereof is ‘Day’ (ahan). He slays (√han) evil, he leaves it behind (√hā) who knows this.

4. The head of the person who is here in the right eye is Bhūr—there is one head, this is one syllable. Bhuvar is the arms—there are two arms, these are two syllables. Svar is the feet—there are two feet, these are two syllables (su-ar). The mystic name (upaniṣad) thereof is ‘I’ (aham). He slays (√han) evil, he leaves it behind (√hā) who knows this.

Sixth Brāhmaṇa

The individual person, pantheistically explained

This person (puruṣa) here in the heart is made of mind, is of the nature of light, is like a little grain of rice, is a grain of barley. This very one is ruler of everything, is lord of everything, governs this whole universe, whatsoever there is.

Seventh Brāhmaṇa

Brahma as lightning, etymologically explained

Brahma is lightning (vidyut), they say, because of unloosing (vidāna). Lightning unlooses (vidyati) him from evil who knows this, that Brahma is lightning—for Brahma is indeed lightning.

Eighth Brāhmaṇa

The symbolism of speech as a cow

One should reverence Speech as a milch-cow. She has four udders: the Svāhā (Invocation), the Vashaṭ (Presentation), the Hanta (Salutation), the Svadhā (Benediction).1 The gods subsist upon her two udders, the Svāhā and the Vashaṭ; men, upon the Hanta; the fathers upon the Svadhā. The breath is her bull; the mind, her calf.

Ninth Brāhmaṇa2

The universal fire and the digestive fire

This is the universal fire which is here within a person, by means of which the food that is eaten is cooked. It is the Edition: current; Page: [153] noise thereof that one hears on covering the ears thus.1 When one is about to depart, one hears not this sound.

Tenth Brāhmaṇa

The course to Brahma after death

Verily, when a person (puruṣa) departs from this world he goes to the wind. It opens out there for him like the hole of a chariot-wheel. Through it he mounts higher.

He goes to the sun. It opens out there for him like the hole of a drum. Through it he mounts higher.

He goes to the moon. It opens out for him there like the hole of a kettle-drum. Through it he mounts higher.

He goes to the world that is without heat, without cold.2 Therein he dwells eternal years.

Eleventh Brāhmaṇa

The supreme austerities

Verily, that is the supreme austerity which a sick man suffers. The supreme world, assuredly, he wins who knows this.

Verily, that is the supreme austerity when they carry a dead man into the wilderness. The supreme world, assuredly, he wins who knows this.

Verily, that is the supreme austerity when they lay a dead man on the fire. The supreme world, assuredly, he wins who knows this.

Twelfth Brāhmaṇa

Brahma as food, life, and renunciation

‘Brahma is food’—thus some say. This is not so. Verily, food becomes putrid without life (prāṇa).

‘Brahma is life’—thus some say. This is not so. Verily, life dries up without food. Rather, only by entering into a unity do these deities reach the highest state.

Now it was in this connection that Prātṛida said to his father: Edition: current; Page: [154] ‘What good, pray, could I do to one who knows this? What evil could I do to him?’1

He then said, with [a wave of] his hand: ‘No, Prātṛida. Who reaches the highest state [merely] by entering into a unity with these two?’

And he also spoke to him thus: ‘vi’—verily, vi is food, for all beings here enter (√viś) into food; and ‘ram’—verily, ram is life, for all beings here delight (√ram) in life. Verily, indeed, all beings enter into him, all beings delight in him who knows this.2

Thirteenth Brāhmaṇa

Life represented in the officiating priest and in the ruler

1. The Uktha3: Verily, the Uktha is life (prāṇa), for it is life that causes everything here to rise up (ut-thā). From him there rises up an Uktha-knowing son, he wins co-union and co-status with the Uktha, who knows this.

2. The Yajus4: Verily, the Yajus is life (prāṇa), for in life are all beings here united (√yuj). United, indeed, are all beings for his supremacy, he wins co-union and co-status with the Yajus, who knows this.

3. The Sāman5: Verily, the Sāman is life (prāṇa), for in life are all beings here combined (samyañci). Combined, indeed, are all beings here serving him for his supremacy, he wins co-union and co-status with the Sāman, who knows this.

4. The Kshatra: Verily, rule is life (prāṇa), for verily, rule is life. Life protects (√tra) one from hurting (kṣaṇitos). He attains a rule that needs no protection (a-tra), he wins co-union and co-status with the Kshatra,6 who knows this.

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Fourteenth Brāhmaṇa

The mystical significance of the sacred Gāyatrī prayer

1. bhū-mir (earth), an-ta-ri-kṣa (interspace), dy-aur (sky)—eight syllables. Of eight syllables, verily, is one line of the Gāyatrī. And that [series], indeed, is that [line] of it. As much as there is in the three worlds, so much indeed does he win who knows thus that line of it.

2. ṛ-cas (verses),1 ya-jūṁ-ṣi (sacrificial formulas),2 sā-mā-ni (chants)3—eight syllables. Of eight syllables, verily, is one line of the Gāyatrī. And that [series], indeed, is that [line] of it. As much as is this threefold knowledge, so much indeed does he win who knows thus that line of it.

3. prā-ṇa (in-breath), ap-ā-na (out-breath), vy-ā-na (diffused breath)—eight syllables. Of eight syllables, verily, is one line of the Gāyatrī. And that [series], indeed, is that [line] of it. As much breathing as there is here, so much indeed does he win who knows thus that line of it.

That is its fourth, the sightly, foot, namely the one above-the-darksome who glows yonder.4 This fourth is the same as the Turīya. It is called the ‘sightly (darśatam) foot,’ because it has come into sight (dadṛśe), as it were. And he is called ‘above-the-darksome’ (paro-rajas), because he glows yonder far above everything darksome. Thus he glows with luster and glory who knows thus that foot of it.

4. This Gāyatrī is based upon that fourth, sightly foot, the one above-the-darksome. That is based upon truth (satya). Verily, truth is sight, for verily, truth is sight. Therefore if now two should come disputing, saying ‘I have seen!’ ‘I have heard!’ we should trust the one who would say ‘I have seen.’

Verily, that truth is based on strength (bala). Verily, strength is life (prāṇa). It is based on life. Therefore they say, ‘Strength is more powerful than truth.’

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Thus is that Gāyatrī based with regard to the Self (adhyātmam). It protects the house-servants. Verily, the house-servants are the vital breaths (prāṇa). So it protects the vital breaths. Because it protects (√trā) the house-servants (gaya), therefore it is called Gāyatrī. That Sāvitrī stanza1 which one repeats is just this. For whomever one repeats it, it protects his vital breaths.

5. Some recite this Sāvitrī stanza as Anushṭubh meter,2 saying: ‘The speech is Anushṭubh meter. We recite the speech accordingly.’ One should not so do. One should recite the Sāvitrī stanza as Gāyatrī meter.3 Verily, even if one who knows thus receives very much, that is not at all in comparison with one single line of the Gāyatrī.

6. If one should receive these three worlds full, he would receive that first line of it [i.e. the Gāyatrī]. If one should receive as much as is this threefold knowledge, he would receive that second line of it. If one should receive as much as there is breathing here, he would receive that third line of it. But that fourth (turīya), sightly foot, the one above-the-darksome, who glows yonder, is not obtainable by any one whatsoever. Whence, pray, would one receive so much!

7. The veneration of it: ‘O Gāyatrī, you are one-footed, two-footed, three-footed, four-footed. You are without a foot, because you do not go afoot. Adoration to your fourth, sightly foot, the one above-the-darksome!—Let not so-and-so obtain such-and-such!’—namely, the one whom one hates. Or, ‘So-and-so—let not his wish prosper!’—Indeed, that wish is not prospered for him in regard to whom one venerates thus. Or, ‘Let me obtain such-and-such!’

8. On this point, verily, Janaka, [king] of Videha, spoke as follows to Buḍila Āśvatarāśvi: ‘Ho! Now if you spoke of yourself thus as a knower of the Gāyatrī, how then have you come to be an elephant and are carrying?’

‘Because, great king, I did not know its mouth,’ said he.

Its mouth is fire. Verily, indeed, even if they lay very much Edition: current; Page: [157] on a fire, it burns it all. Even so one who knows this, although he commits very much evil, consumes it all and becomes clean and pure, ageless and immortal.

Fifteenth Brāhmaṇa1

A dying person’s prayer

  • With a golden vessel
  • The Real’s face is covered o’er.
  • That do thou, O Pūshan, uncover
  • For one whose law is the Real (satya-dharma) to see.

O Nourisher (Pūṣan), the sole Seer, O Controller (Yama), O Sun, offspring of Prajāpati, spread forth thy rays! Gather thy brilliance! What is thy fairest form—that of thee I see. He who is yonder, yonder Person (puruṣa)—I myself am he!

[My] breath (vāyu) to the immortal wind (anilam amṛtam)! This body then ends in ashes! Om!

  • O Purpose (kratu), remember! The deed (kṛta) remember!
  • O Purpose, remember! The deed remember!

General prayer of petition and adoration

  • O Agni, by a goodly path to prosperity (rai) lead us,
  • Thou god who knowest all the ways!
  • Keep far from us crooked-going sin (enas)!
  • Most ample expression of adoration to thee would we render.2

SIXTH ADHYĀYA

First Brāhmaṇa

The characteristic excellence of six bodily functions, and the value of the knowledge thereof3

1. Om! Verily, he who knows the chiefest and best, becomes the chiefest and best of his own [people].

Breath (prāṇa), verily, is chiefest and best. He who knows this becomes the chiefest and best of his own [people] and even of those of whom he wishes so to become.

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2. Verily, he who knows the most excellent becomes the most excellent of his own [people].

Speech, verily, is the most excellent. He who knows this becomes the most excellent of his own [people] and even of those of whom he wishes so to become.

3. Verily, he who knows the firm basis (prati-ṣṭhā) has a firm basis (verb prati-ṣṭhā) on even ground, has a firm basis on rough ground.

The Eye, verily, is a firm basis, for with the eye both on even ground and on rough ground one has a firm basis. He has a firm basis on even ground, he has a firm basis on rough ground, who knows this.

4. Verily, he who knows attainment—for him, indeed, is attained what wish he wishes.

The Ear, verily, is attainment, for in the ear all these Vedas are attained. The wish that he wishes is attained for him who knows this.

5. Verily, he who knows the abode becomes the abode of his own [people], an abode of folk.

The Mind, verily, is an abode. He becomes an abode of his own [people], an abode of folk, who knows this.

6. Verily, he who knows procreation (prajāti) procreates himself with progeny and cattle.

Semen, verily, is procreation. He procreates himself with progeny and cattle, who knows this.

The contest of the bodily functions for superiority, and the supremacy of breath1

7. These vital Breaths (prāṇa), disputing among themselves on self-superiority, went to Brahma. Then they said: ‘Which of us is the most excellent?’

Then he said: ‘The one of you after whose going off this body is thought to be worse off, he is the most excellent of you.’

8. Speech went off. Having remained away a year, it came back and said: ‘How have you been able to live without me?’

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They said: ‘As the dumb, not speaking with speech, but breathing with breath, seeing with the eye, hearing with the ear, knowing with the mind, procreating with semen. Thus have we lived.’ Speech entered in.

9. The Eye went off. Having remained away a year, it came back and said: ‘How have you been able to live without me?’

They said: ‘As the blind, not seeing with the eye, but breathing with breath, speaking with speech, hearing with the ear, knowing with the mind, procreating with semen. Thus have we lived.’ The eye entered in.

10. The Ear went off. Having remained away a year, it came back and said: ‘How have you been able to live without me?’

They said: ‘As the deaf, not hearing with the ear, but breathing with breath, speaking with speech, seeing with the eye, knowing with the mind, procreating with semen. Thus have we lived.’ The ear entered in.

11. The Mind went off. Having remained away a year, it came back and said: ‘How have you been able to live without me?’

They said: ‘As the stupid, not knowing with the mind, but breathing with breath, speaking with speech, seeing with the eye, hearing with the ear, procreating with semen. Thus have we lived.’ The mind entered in.

12. The Semen went off. Having remained away a year, it came back and said: ‘How have you been able to live without me?’

They said: ‘As the emasculated, not procreating with semen, but breathing with breath, speaking with speech, seeing with the eye, hearing with the ear, knowing with the mind. Thus have we lived.’ The semen entered in.

13. Then Breath was about to go off. As a large fine horse of the Indus-land might pull up the pegs of his foot-tethers together, thus indeed did it pull up those vital breaths together. They said: ‘Sir, go not off! Verily, we shall not be able to live without you!’

‘If such I am, make me an offering.’

‘So be it.’

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14. Speech said: ‘Verily, wherein I am the most excellent, therein are you the most excellent.’

‘Verily, wherein I am a firm basis, therein are you a firm basis,’ said the eye.

‘Verily, wherein I am attainment, therein are you attainment,’ said the ear.

‘Verily, wherein I am an abode, therein are you an abode,’ said the mind.

‘Verily, wherein I am procreation, therein are you procreation,’ said the semen.

‘If such I am, what is my food? what is my dwelling?’

‘Whatever there is here, even to dogs, worms, crawling and flying insects—that is your food. Water is your dwelling.’

Verily, what is not food is not eaten; what is not food is not taken by him who thus knows that [i.e. water] as the food (anna) of breath (ana). Those who know this, who are versed in sacred learning (śrotriya), when they are about to eat, take a sip; after they have eaten, they take a sip. So, indeed, they think they make that breath (ana) not naked (anagna).

Second Brāhmaṇa

The course of the soul in its incarnations1

1. Verily, Śvetaketu Āruṇeya went up to an assembly of Pañcālas. He went up to Pravāhaṇa Jaibali while the latter was having himself waited upon. He, looking up, said unto him, ‘Young man!’

‘Sir!’ he replied.

‘Have you been instructed by your father?’

‘Yes,’ said he.

2. ‘Know you how people here, on deceasing, separate in different directions?’

‘No,’ said he.

‘Know you how they come back again to this world?’

‘No,’ said he.

‘Know you why yonder world is not filled up with the many who continually thus go hence?’

‘No,’ said he.

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‘Know you in which oblation that is offered the water becomes the voice of a person, rises up, and speaks?’

‘No,’ said he.

‘Know you the access of the path leading to the gods, or of the one leading to the fathers? by doing what, people go to the path of the gods or of the fathers? for we have heard the word of the seer:—

  • Two paths, I’ve heard—the one that leads to fathers,
  • And one that leads to gods—belong to mortals.
  • By these two, every moving thing here travels,
  • That is between the Father and the Mother.’1

‘Not a single one of them do I know,’ said he.

3. Then he addressed him with an invitation to remain. Not respecting the invitation to remain, the boy ran off. He went to his father. He said to him: ‘Verily, aforetime you have spoken of me, Sir, as having been instructed!’

‘How now, wise one?’

‘Five questions a fellow of the princely class (rājanyabandhu) has asked me. Not a single one of them do I know.’

‘What are they?’

‘These’—and he repeated the topics.

4. He said: ‘You should know me, my dear, as such, that whatsoever I myself know, I have told all to you. But, come! Let us go there and take up studentship.’

‘Go yourself, Sir.’

So Gautama2 went forth to where [the place] of Pravāhaṇa Jaibali was.

He brought him a seat, and had water brought; so he made him a respectful welcome. Then he said to him: ‘A boon we offer to the honorable Gautama!’

5. Then he said: ‘The boon acceptable to me is this:—Pray tell me the word which you spoke in the presence of the young man.’

6. Then he said: ‘Verily, Gautama, that is among divine boons. Mention [one] of human boons.’

7. Then he said: ‘It is well known that I have a full share of gold, of cows and horses, of female slaves, of rugs, of apparel. Edition: current; Page: [162] Be not ungenerous toward me, Sir, in regard to that which is the abundant, the infinite, the unlimited.’

‘Then, verily, O Gautama, you should seek in the usual manner.’

‘I come to you, Sir, as a pupil!’—with [this] word, verily, indeed, men aforetime came as pupils.—So with the acknowledgment of coming as a pupil he remained.

8. Then he said: ‘As truly as this knowledge has never heretofore dwelt with any Brahman (brāhmaṇa) whatsoever, so truly may not you and your grandfathers injure us. But I will tell it to you, for who is able to refuse you when you speak thus!’ He continued (iti):

9. ‘Yonder world, verily, is a sacrificial fire, O Gautama. The sun, in truth, is its fuel; the light-rays, the smoke; the day, the flame; the quarters of heaven, the coals; the intermediate quarters, the sparks. In this fire the gods offer faith (śraddhā). From this oblation King Soma arises.

10. A rain-cloud, verily, is a sacrificial fire, O Gautama. The year, in truth, is its fuel; the thunder-clouds, the smoke; the lightning, the flame; the thunder-bolts, the coals; the hail-stones, the sparks. In this fire the gods offer King Soma. From this oblation rain arises.

11. This world, verily, is a sacrificial fire, O Gautama. The earth, in truth, is its fuel; fire, the smoke; night, the flame; the moon, the coals; the stars, the sparks. In this fire the gods offer rain. From this oblation food arises.

12. Man (puruṣa), verily, is a sacrificial fire, O Gautama. The open mouth, verily, is its fuel; breath (prāṇa), the smoke; speech, the flame; the eye, the coals; the ear, the sparks. In this fire the gods offer food. From this oblation semen arises.

13. Woman, verily, is a sacrificial fire, O Gautama. The sexual organ, in truth, is its fuel; the hairs, the smoke; the vulva, the flame; when one inserts, the coals; the feelings of pleasure, the sparks. In this oblation the gods offer semen. From this oblation a person (puruṣa) arises.

He lives as long as he lives. Then when he dies, [14] then they carry him to the fire.1 His fire, in truth, becomes the fire; fuel, the fuel; smoke, the smoke; flame, the flame; Edition: current; Page: [163] coals, the coals; sparks, the sparks. In this fire the gods offer a person (puruṣa). From this oblation the man arises, having the color of light.

15. Those who know this, and those too who in the forest truly worship (upāsate) faith (śraddhā), pass into the flame [of the cremation-fire]; from the flame, into the day; from the day, into the half month of the waxing moon; from the half month of the waxing moon, into the six months during which the sun moves northward; from these months, into the world of the gods (deva-loka); from the world of the gods, into the sun; from the sun, into the lightning-fire. A Person (puruṣa) consisting of mind (mānasa) goes to those regions of lightning and conducts them to the Brahma-worlds. In those Brahma-worlds they dwell for long extents. Of these there is no return.

16. But they who by sacrificial offering, charity, and austerity conquer the worlds, pass into the smoke [of the cremation-fire]; from the smoke, into the night; from the night, into the half month of the waning moon; from the half month of the waning moon, into the six months during which the sun moves southward; from those months, into the world of the fathers; from the world of the fathers, into the moon. Reaching the moon, they become food. There the gods—as they say to King Soma, “Increase! Decrease!”—even so feed upon them there. When that passes away for them, then they pass forth into this space; from space, into air; from air, into rain; from rain, into the earth. On reaching the earth they become food. Again they are offered in the fire of man. Thence they are born in the fire of woman. Rising up into the world, they cycle round again thus.

But those who know not these two ways, become crawling and flying insects and whatever there is here that bites.’

Third Brāhmaṇa

Incantation and ceremony for the attainment of a great wish1

1. Whoever may wish, ‘I would attain something great!’—in the northern course of the sun, on an auspicious day of the Edition: current; Page: [164] half month of the waxing moon, having performed the Upasad ceremony for twelve days, having collected in a dish of the wood of the sacred fig-tree (udambara), or in a cup, all sorts of herbs including fruits, having swept around,1 having smeared around, having built up a fire, having strewn it around,2 having prepared the melted butter according to rule, having compounded the mixed potion under a male star, he makes an oblation, saying:—

  • ‘However many gods in thee, All-knower,3
  • Adversely slay desires of a person,
  • To them participation I here offer!
  • Let them, pleased, please me with all desires!
  • Hail!
  • Whoever lays herself adverse,
  • And says, “I the deposer am!”
  • To thee, O such appeasing one,
  • With stream of ghee I sacrifice.
  • Hail!’

2. ‘To the chiefest, hail! To the best, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion. A Hail to breath (prāṇa)!

‘To the most excellent, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion. A Hail to speech!

‘To the firm basis, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion. A Hail to the eye!

‘To attainment, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion. A Hail to the ear!

‘To the abode, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion. A Hail to the mind!

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‘To procreation, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion. A Hail to the semen!

Thus he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

3. ‘To Agni (fire), hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘To Soma, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘O Earth (bhūr), hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘O Atmosphere (bhuvas), hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘O Sky (svar), hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘O Earth, Atmosphere and Sky, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘To the Brahmanhood, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘To the Kshatrahood, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘To the past, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘To the future, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘To everything, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘To the All, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

‘To Prajāpati, hail!’—he makes an oblation in the fire and pours off the remainder in the mixed potion.

4. Then he touches it, saying: ‘Thou art the moving. Thou art the glowing. Thou art the full. Thou art the steadfast. Thou art the sole resort. Thou art the sound hiṅ that is made. Thou art the making of the sound hiṅ.1 Thou art the Loud Chant (udgītha). Thou art the chanting. Thou art that which is proclaimed. Thou art that which is proclaimed Edition: current; Page: [166] in the antiphone. Thou art the flaming in the moist. Thou art the pervading. Thou art surpassing. Thou art food. Thou art light. Thou art destruction. Thou art the despoiler.’

5. Then he raises it, saying: ‘Thou thinkest. Think of thy greatness!1 He is, indeed, king and ruler and overlord. Let the king and ruler make me overlord.’

6. Then he takes a sip, saying:—

  • ‘On this desired [glory] of Savitṛi2
  • ’Tis sweetness, winds for pious man—
  • ’Tis sweetness, too, the streams pour forth.
  • Sweet-filled for us let be the herbs!3
  • To Earth (bhūr), hail!
  • [On this desired] glory of the god let us meditate.4
  • Sweet be the night and morning glows!
  • Sweet be the atmosphere of earth!
  • And sweet th’ Heaven-father (dyaus pitā) be to us!5
  • To Atmosphere (bhuvas), hail!
  • And may he himself inspire our thoughts!6
  • The tree be full of sweet for us!
  • And let the sun be full of sweet!
  • Sweet-filled the cows become for us!7
  • To the Sky (svar), hail!’

He repeats all the Sāvitrī Hymn and all the ‘Sweet-verses,’ and says: ‘May I indeed become this world-all! O Earth (bhūr) and Atmosphere (bhuvas) and Sky (svar)! Hail!’

Finally, having taken a sip, having washed his hands, he lies down behind the fire, head eastward. In the morning he worships the sun, and says: ‘Of the quarters of heaven thou art the one lotus-flower!8 May I of men become the one lotus-flower!’8

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Then he goes back the same way that he came, and, seated behind the fire, mutters the Line of Tradition (vaṁśa).1

7. This, indeed, did Uddālaka Āruṇi tell to his pupil Vājasaneya Yājñavalkya, and say: ‘Even if one should pour this on a dry stump, branches would be produced and leaves would spring forth.’

8. This, indeed, did Vājasaneya Yājñavalkya tell to his pupil Madhuka Paiṅgya, and say: ‘Even if one should pour this on a dry stump, branches would be produced and leaves would spring forth.’

9. This, indeed, did Madhuka Paiṅgya tell to his pupil Cūla Bhāgavitti, and say: ‘Even if one should pour this on a dry stump, branches would be produced and leaves would spring forth.’

10. This, indeed, did Cūla Bhāgavitti tell to his pupil Jānaki Āyasthūṇa, and say: ‘Even if one should pour this on a dry stump, branches would be produced and leaves would spring forth.’

11. This, indeed, did Jānaki Āyasthūṇa tell to his pupil Satyakāma Jābāla, and say: ‘Even if one should pour this on a dry stump, branches would be produced and leaves would spring forth.’

12. This, indeed, did Satyakāma Jābāla tell to his pupils, and say: ‘Even if one should pour this on a dry stump, branches would be produced and leaves would spring forth.’

One should not tell this to one who is not a son or to one who is not a pupil.2

13. Fourfold is the wood of the sacred fig-tree [in the ceremony]: the spoon (sruva) is of the wood of the sacred fig-tree; the cup is of the wood of the sacred fig-tree; the fuel is of the wood of the sacred fig-tree; the two mixing-sticks are of the wood of the sacred fig-tree. There are ten cultivated grains [used]: rice and barley, sesamum and beans, millet and panic, and wheat, and lentils, and pulse, and vetches. These, when they have been ground, one sprinkles with curdled milk, honey, and ghee; and one makes an oblation of melted butter.

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Fourth Brāhmaṇa

Incantations and ceremonies for procreation

1. Verily, of created things here earth is the essence; of earth, water; of water, plants; of plants, flowers; of flowers, fruits; of fruits, man (puruṣa); of man, semen.

2. Prajāpati (‘Lord of creatures’) bethought himself: ‘Come, let me provide him a firm basis!’ So he created woman. When he had created her, he revered her below.—Therefore one should revere woman below.—He stretched out for himself that stone which projects. With that he impregnated her.

3. Her lap is a sacrificial altar; her hairs, the sacrificial grass; her skin, the soma-press. The two lips of the vulva are the fire in the middle. Verily, indeed, as great as is the world of him who sacrifices with the Vājapeya (‘Strengthlibation’) sacrifice, so great is the world of him who practises sexual intercourse, knowing this; he turns the good deeds of women to himself. But he who practises sexual intercourse without knowing this—women turn his good deeds unto themselves.

4. This, verily, indeed, it was that Uddālaka Āruṇi knew when he said:—

This, verily, indeed, it was that Nāka Maudgalya knew when he said:—

This, verily, indeed, it was that Kumārahārita knew when he said: ‘Many mortal men, Brahmans by descent, go forth from this world, impotent and devoid of merit, namely those who practise sexual intercourse without knowing this.’

[If] even this much1 semen is spilled, whether of one asleep or of one awake, [5] then he should touch it, or [without touching] repeat:—

  • ‘What semen has of mine to earth been spilt now,
  • Whate’er to herb has flowed, whate’er to water—
  • This very semen I reclaim!
  • Again to me let vigor come!
  • Again, my strength; again, my glow!
  • Again the altars and the fire
  • Be found in their accustomed place!’
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Having spoken thus, he should take it with ring-finger and thumb, and rub it on between his breasts or his eye-brows.

6. Now, if one should see himself in water, he should recite over it the formula: ‘In me be vigor, power, beauty, wealth, merit!’

This, verily, indeed, is loveliness among women: when [a woman] has removed the [soiled] clothes of her impurity. Therefore when she has removed the [soiled] clothes of her impurity and is beautiful, one should approach and invite her.

7. If she should not grant him his desire, he should bribe her. If she still does not grant him his desire, he should hit her with a stick or with his hand, and overcome her, saying: ‘With power, with glory I take away your glory!’ Thus she becomes inglorious.

8. If she should yield to him, he says: ‘With power, with glory I give you glory!’ Thus they two become glorious.

9. The woman whom one may desire with the thought, ‘May she enjoy love with me!’—after coming together with her, joining mouth with mouth, and stroking her lap, he should mutter:—

  • ‘Thou that from every limb art come,
  • That from the heart art generate,
  • Thou art the essence of the limbs!
  • Distract this woman here in me,
  • As if by poisoned arrow pierced!’

10. Now, the woman whom one may desire with the thought, ‘May she not conceive offspring!’—after coming together with her and joining mouth with mouth, he should first inhale, then exhale, and say: ‘With power, with semen, I reclaim the semen from you!’ Thus she comes to be without seed.

11. Now, the woman whom one may desire with the thought, ‘May she conceive!’—after coming together with her and joining mouth with mouth, he should first exhale, then inhale, and say: ‘With power, with semen, I deposit semen in you!’ Thus she becomes pregnant.

12. Now, if one’s wife have a paramour, and he hate him, let him put fire in an unannealed vessel, spread out a row of reed arrows in inverse order, and therein sacrifice in inverse Edition: current; Page: [170] order those reed arrows, their heads smeared with ghee, saying:—

‘You have made a libation in my fire! I take away your in-breath and out-breath (prāṇāpānau)—you, so-and-so!

You have made a libation in my fire! I take away your sons and cattle1—you, so-and-so!

You have made a libation in my fire! I take away your sacrifices and meritorious deeds1—you, so-and-so!

You have made a libation in my fire! I take away your hope and expectation1—you, so-and-so!’

Verily, he whom a Brahman who knows this curses—he departs from this world impotent and devoid of merit. Therefore one should not desire sport with the spouse of a person learned in sacred lore (śrotriya) who knows this, for indeed he who knows this becomes superior.2

13. Now, when the monthly sickness comes upon any one’s wife, for three days she should not drink from a metal cup, nor put on fresh clothes. Neither a low-caste man nor a low-caste woman should touch her. At the end of the three nights she should bathe and should have rice threshed.

14. In case one wishes, ‘That a white son be born to me! that he may be able to repeat a Veda! that he may attain the full length of life!’—they two should have rice cooked with milk and should eat it prepared with ghee. They two are likely to beget [him].

15. Now, in case one wishes, ‘That a tawny son with reddish-brown eyes be born to me! that he may be able to recite two Vedas! that he may attain the full length of life!’—they two should have rice cooked with sour milk and should eat it prepared with ghee. They two are likely to beget [him].

16. Now, in case one wishes, ‘That a swarthy son with red eyes be born to me! that he may be able to repeat three Vedas! that he may attain the full length of life!’—they two should have rice boiled with water and should eat it prepared with ghee. They two are likely to beget [him].

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17. Now, in case one wishes, ‘That a learned (paṇḍita) daughter be born to me! that she may attain the full length of life!’—they two should have rice boiled with sesame and should eat it prepared with ghee. They two are likely to beget [her].

18. Now, in case one wishes, ‘That a son, learned, famed, a frequenter of council-assemblies, a speaker of discourse desired to be heard, be born to me! that he be able to repeat all the Vedas! that he attain the full length of life!’—they two should have rice boiled with meat and should eat it prepared with ghee. They two are likely to beget [him], with meat, either veal or beef.

19. Now, toward morning, having prepared melted butter in the manner of the Sthālīpāka,1 he takes of the Sthālīpāka and makes a libation, saying: ‘To Agni, hail! To Anumati,2 hail! To the god Savitṛi (‘Enlivener,’ the Sun), whose is true procreation3 (satya-prasava), hail!’ Having made the libation, he takes and eats. Having eaten, he offers to the other [i.e. to her]. Having washed his hands, he fills a vessel with water and therewith sprinkles her thrice, saying:—

  • ‘Arise from hence, Viśvavasu!4
  • Some other choicer maiden seek!
  • This wife together with her lord—’5

20. Then he comes to her and says:—

  • ‘This man (ama) am I; that woman (), thou!
  • That woman, thou; this man am I!
  • I am the Sāman; thou, the Rig!
  • I am the heaven; thou, the earth!
  • Come, let us two together clasp!
  • Together let us semen mix,
  • A male, a son for to procure!’
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21. Then he spreads apart her thighs, saying: ‘Spread yourselves apart, heaven and earth!’ Coming together with her and joining mouth with mouth, he strokes her three times as the hair lies, saying:—

    • ‘Let Vishṇu make the womb prepared!
    • Let Tvashtṛi shape the various forms!
    • Prajāpati—let him pour in!
    • Let Dhātṛi place the germ for thee!
    • O Sinīvālī, give the germ;
    • O give the germ, thou broad-tressed dame!
    • Let the Twin Gods implace thy germ—
    • The Aśvins, crowned with lotus-wreaths!
    • 22. With twain attrition-sticks of gold
    • The Aśvin Twins twirl forth a flame;
    • ’Tis such a germ we beg for thee,
    • In the tenth month to be brought forth.1
    • As earth contains the germ of Fire (agni),
    • As heaven is pregnant with the Storm (indra),
    • As of the points the Wind (vāyu) is germ,
    • E’en so a germ I place in thee,
    • So-and-so!’

23. When she is about to bring forth, he sprinkles her with water, saying:—

    • ‘Like as the wind doth agitate
    • A lotus-pond on every side,
    • So also let thy fetus stir.
    • Let it come with its chorion.
    • This fold of Indra’s has been made
    • With barricade, enclosed around.
    • O Indra, cause him to come forth—
    • The after-birth along with babe!’2

24. When [the son] is born, he [i.e. the father] builds up a fire, places him on his lap, mingles ghee and coagulated milk in a metal dish, and makes an oblation, ladling out of the mingled ghee and coagulated milk, and saying:—

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  • ‘In this son may I be increased,
  • And have a thousand in mine house!
  • May nothing rob his retinue
  • Of offspring or of animals!
  • Hail!

The vital powers (prāṇa) which are in me, my mind, I offer in you.

  • Hail!
  • What in this rite I overdid,
  • Or what I have here scanty made—
  • Let Agni, wise, the Prosperer,
  • Make fit and good our sacrifice!
  • Hail!’

25. Then he draws down to the child’s right ear and says ‘Speech! Speech!’ three times. Then he mingles coagulated milk, honey, and ghee and feeds [his son] out of a gold [spoon] which is not placed within [the mouth],1 saying: ‘I place in you Bhūr! I place in you Bhuvas! I place in you Svar! Bhūr, Bhuvas, Svar—everything2 I place in you!’

26. Then he gives him a name, saying ‘You are Veda.’3 So this becomes his secret name.4

27. Then he presents him to the mother and offers the breast, saying:—

  • ‘Thy breast which is unfailing and refreshing,
  • Wealth-bearer, treasure-finder, rich bestower,
  • With which thou nourishest all things esteeméd—
  • Give it here, O Sarasvatī, to suck from.’5

28. Then he addresses the child’s mother:—

  • ‘You are Iḷā,6 of the lineage of Mitra and Varuṇa!
  • O heroine! She has borne a hero!7
  • Continue to be such a woman abounding in heroes—
  • She who has made us abound in a hero!’
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Of such a son, verily, they say: ‘Ah, you have gone beyond your father! Ah, you have gone beyond your grandfather!’

Ah, he reaches the highest pinnacle of splendor, glory, and sacred knowledge who is born as the son of a Brahman who knows this!

Fifth Brāhmaṇa

The tradition of teachers in the Vājasaneyi school

1. Now the Line of Tradition (vaṁśa).—

  • The son of Pautimāshī [received this teaching] from the son of Kātyāyanī,
  • the son of Kātyāyanī from the son of Gautamī,
  • the son of Gautamī from the son of Bhāradvājī,
  • the son of Bhāradvājī from the son of Pārāśarī,
  • the son of Pārāśarī from the son of Aupasvastī,
  • the son of Aupasvastī from the son of Pārāśarī,
  • the son of Pārāśarī from the son of Kātyāyanī,
  • the son of Kātyāyanī from the son of Kauśikī,
  • the son of Kauśikī from the son of Ālambī and the son of Vaiyāghrapadī,
  • the son of Vaiyāghrapadī from the son of Kāṇvī and the son of Kāpī,
  • the son of Kāpī [2] from the son of Ātreyī,
  • the son of Ātreyī from the son of Gautamī,
  • the son of Gautamī from the son of Bhāradvājī,
  • the son of Bhāradvājī from the son of Pārāśarī,
  • the son of Pārāśarī from the son of Vātsī,
  • the son of Vātsī from the son of Pārāśarī,
  • the son of Pārāśarī from the son of Vārkāruṇī,
  • the son of Vārkāruṇī from the son of Vārkāruṇī,
  • the son of Vārkāruṇī from the son of Ārtabhāgī,
  • the son of Ārtabhāgī from the son of Śauṅgī,
  • the son of Śauṅgī from the son of Sāṅkṛitī,
  • the son of Sāṅkṛitī from the son of Ālambāyanī,
  • the son of Ālambāyanī from the son of Ālambī,
  • the son of Ālambī from the son of Jāyantī,
  • the son of Jāyantī from the son of Māṇḍūkāyanī,
  • the son of Māṇḍūkāyanī from the son of Māṇḍūkī,
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  • the son of Māṇḍūkī from the son of Śāṇḍilī,
  • the son of Śāṇḍilī from the son of Rāthītarī,
  • the son of Rāthītarī from the son of Bhālukī,
  • the son of Bhālukī from the two sons of Krauñcikī,
  • the two sons of Krauñcikī from the son of Vaidṛibhatī,
  • the son of Vaidṛibhatī from the son of Kārśakeyī,
  • the son of Kārśakeyī from the son of Prācīnayogī,
  • the son of Prācīnayogī from the son of Sāñjīvī,
  • the son of Sāñjīvī from the son of Prāśnī, the Āsurivāsin,
  • the son of Prāśnī from Āsurāyaṇa,
  • Āsurāyaṇa from Āsuri,
  • Āsuri [3] from Yājñavalkya,
  • Yājñavalkya from Uddālaka,
  • Uddālaka from Aruṇa,
  • Aruṇa from Upaveśi,
  • Upaveśi from Kuśri,
  • Kuśri from Vājaśravas,
  • Vājaśravas from Jihvāvant Vādhyoga,
  • Jihvāvant Vādhyoga from Asita Vārshagaṇa,
  • Asita Vārshagaṇa from Harita Kaśyapa,
  • Harita Kaśyapa from Śilpa Kaśyapa,
  • Śilpa Kaśyapa from Kaśyapa Naidhruvi,
  • Kaśyapa Naidhruvi from Vāc (Speech),
  • Vāc from Ambhiṇī,
  • Ambhiṇī from Āditya (the Sun).

These white1 sacrificial formulas (yajur) which come from Āditya are declared by Yājñavalkya of the Vājasaneyi school.

The line of tradition from Brahma

4. Up to the son of Sāñjīvī it is the same.2

  • The son of Sāñjīvī from Māṇḍūkāyani,
  • Māṇḍūkāyani from Māṇḍavya,
  • Māṇḍavya from Kautsa,
  • Kautsa from Māhitthi,
  • Māhitthi from Vāmakakshāyaṇa,
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  • Vāmakakshāyaṇa from Śāṇḍilya,
  • Śāṇḍilya from Vātsya,
  • Vātsya from Kuśri,
  • Kuśri from Yajñavacas Rājastambāyana,
  • Yajñavacas Rājastambāyana from Tura Kāvasheya,
  • Tura Kāvasheya from Prajāpati,
  • Prajāpati from Brahma.

Brahma is the Self-existent (svayam-bhū). Adoration to Brahma!

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CHĀNDOGYA UPANISHAD

FIRST PRAPĀṬHAKA
A Glorification of the Chanting of the Sāma-Veda1

First Khaṇḍa

The Udgītha identified with the sacred syllable ‘Om’

1. Om! One should reverence the Udgītha (Loud Chant) as this syllable, for one sings the loud chant (ud + √gī) [beginning] with ‘Om.2

The further explanation thereof [is as follows]:—

2. The essence of things here is the earth.

The essence of the earth is water.

The essence of water is plants.

The essence of plants is a person (puruṣa).

The essence of a person is speech.

The essence of speech is the Rig (‘hymn’).

The essence of the Rig3 is the Sāman (‘chant’).

The essence of the Sāman4 is the Udgītha (‘loud singing’).

3. This is the quintessence of the essences, the highest, the supreme, the eighth—namely the Udgītha.

4. ‘Which one is the Rig? Which one is the Sāman? Which one is the Udgītha?’—Thus has there been a discussion.

5. The Rig is speech. The Sāman is breath (prāṇa). The Udgītha is this syllable ‘Om.

Verily, this is a pair—namely speech and breath, and also the Rig and the Sāman.

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6. This pair is joined together in this syllable ‘Om.

Verily, when a pair come together, verily, the two procure each the other’s desire.

7. A procurer of desires, verily, indeed, becomes he who, knowing this thus, reverences the Udgītha as this syllable.

8. Verily, this syllable is assent; for whenever one assents to anything he says simply ‘Om.1 This, indeed, is fulfilment—that is, assent is.

A fulfiller of desires, verily, indeed, becomes he who, knowing this thus, reverences the Udgītha as this syllable.

9. This threefold knowledge2 proceeds with it: saying ‘Om,’ one3 calls forth; saying ‘Om,’ one4 recites; saying ‘Om,’ one5 sings aloud, to the honor of that syllable, with its greatness, with its essence.

10. He who knows this thus and he who knows not, both perform with it. Diverse, however, are knowledge and ignorance. What, indeed, one performs with knowledge, with faith (śraddhā), with mystic doctrine (upaniṣad)—that, indeed, becomes the more effective.

—Such is the further explanation of this syllable.

Second Khaṇḍa

The Udgītha identified with breath

1. Verily, when the gods (Devas) and the devils (Asuras), both descendants of Prajāpati, contended with each other, the gods took unto themselves the Udgītha, thinking: ‘With this we shall overcome them!’6

2. Then they reverenced the Udgītha as the breath in the nose. The devils afflicted that with evil. Therefore with it Edition: current; Page: [179] one smells both the sweet-smelling and the ill-smelling, for it is afflicted with evil.

3. Then they reverenced the Udgītha as speech. The devils afflicted that with evil. Therefore with it one speaks both the true and the false, for it is afflicted with evil.

4. Then they reverenced the Udgītha as the eye. The devils afflicted that with evil. Therefore with it one sees both the sightly and the unsightly, for it is afflicted with evil.

5. Then they reverenced the Udgītha as the ear. The devils afflicted that with evil. Therefore with it one hears both what should be listened to and what should not be listened to, for it is afflicted with evil.

6. Then they reverenced the Udgītha as the mind. The devils afflicted that with evil. Therefore with it one imagines both what should be imagined and what should not be imagined, for it is afflicted with evil.

7. Then they reverenced the Udgītha as that which is the breath in the mouth. When the devils struck that, they fell to pieces, as one would fall to pieces in striking against a solid stone.

8. As a lump of clay would fall to pieces in striking against a solid stone, so falls to pieces he who wishes evil to one who knows this, and he, too, who injures him. Such a one is a solid stone.

9. With this [breath] one discerns neither the sweet-smelling nor the ill-smelling, for it is free from evil. Whatever one eats with this, whatever one drinks with this, he protects the other vital breaths. And, not finding this [breath in the mouth], one finally deceases; one finally leaves his mouth open.

10. Aṅgiras reverenced this as the Udgītha. People think that it is indeed Aṅgiras, because it is the essence (rasa) of the limbs (aṅga)—for that reason.

11. Bṛihaspati reverenced this as the Udgītha. People think that it is indeed Bṛihaspati, because speech is great (bṛhatī) and it is the lord (pati) thereof—for that reason.

12. Ayāsya reverenced this as the Udgītha. People think that it is indeed Ayāsya, because it goes (ayate) from the mouth (āsya)—for that reason.

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13. Baka Dālbhya knew it. He became Udgātṛi priest of the people of Naimisha. He used to sing to them their desires.

14. An effective singer of desires, verily, indeed, becomes he who, knowing this thus, reverences the syllable as the Udgītha.

—Thus with reference to the self.

Third Khaṇḍa

Various identifications of the Udgītha and of its syllables

1. Now with reference to the divinities.—

Him who glows yonder [i.e. the sun] one should reverence as an Udgītha. Verily, on rising (ud-yan), he sings aloud (ud-gāyati) for creatures. On rising, he dispels darkness and fear. He, verily, who knows this becomes a dispeller of fear and darkness.

2. This [breath in the mouth] and that [sun] are alike. This is warm. That is warm. People designate this as sound (svara), that as sound (svara)1 and as the reflecting (pratyāsvara). Therefore, verily, one should reverence this and that as an Udgītha.

3. But one should also reverence the diffused breath (vyāna) as an Udgītha. When one breathes in—that is the in-breath (prāṇa). When one breathes out—that is the out-breath (apāna). The junction of the in-breath and the out-breath is the diffused breath. Speech is the diffused breath. Therefore one utters speech without in-breathing, without out-breathing.

4. The Ṛic is speech. Therefore one utters the Ṛic without in-breathing, without out-breathing. The Sāman is the Ṛic. Therefore one sings the Sāman without in-breathing, without out-breathing. The Udgītha is the Sāman. Therefore one chants the Udgītha without in-breathing, without out-breathing.

5. Whatever other actions than these there are that require strength, like the kindling of fire by friction, the running of a race, the bending of a stiff bow—one performs them without in-breathing, without out-breathing. For this reason one should reverence the diffused breath as an Udgītha.

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6. But one should also reverence the syllables of the Udgītha—ud, gī, tha. ud is breath, for through breath one arises (ut-tiṣṭhati); is speech, for people designate speeches as words (giras); tha is food, for upon food this whole world is established (sthita).

7. ud is heaven; is atmosphere; tha is the earth.

ud is the sun; is wind; tha is fire.

ud is Sāma-Veda; is Yajur-Veda; tha is Rig-Veda.

Speech yields milk—that is, the milk of speech itself—for him, he becomes rich in food, an eater of food, who knows and reverences these syllables of the Udgītha thus: ud, gī, tha.

8. Now then, the fulfilment of wishes.—

One should reverence the following as places of refuge.

One should take refuge in the Sāman with which he may be about to sing a Stotra.1

9. One should take refuge in the Ṛic in which it was contained, in the Ṛishi who was the poet, in the divinity unto whom he may be about to sing a Stotra.

10. One should take refuge in the meter with which he may be about to sing a Stotra. One should take refuge in the hymn-form with which he may be about to sing a Stotra for himself.

11. One should take refuge in the quarter of heaven toward which he may be about to sing a Stotra.

12. Finally, one should go unto himself and sing a Stotra, meditating carefully upon his desire. Truly the prospect is that the desire will be fulfilled for him, desiring which he may sing a Stotra—yea, desiring which he may sing a Stotra!

Fourth Khaṇḍa

‘Om,’ superior to the three Vedas, the immortal refuge

1. Om! One should reverence the Udgītha as this syllable, for one sings the loud chant [beginning] with ‘Om.

The further explanation thereof [is as follows].—

2. Verily, the gods, when they were afraid of death, took Edition: current; Page: [182] refuge in the threefold knowledge [i.e. the three Vedas]. They covered (acchādayan) themselves with meters. Because they covered themselves with these, therefore the meters are called chandas.

3. Death saw them there, in the Ṛic, in the Sāman, in the Yajus, just as one might see a fish in water. When they found this out, they arose out of the Ṛic, out of the Sāman, out of the Yajus, and took refuge in sound.

4. Verily, when one finishes an Ṛic, he sounds out ‘Om’; similarly a Sāman; similarly a Yajus. This sound is that syllable.1 It is immortal, fearless. By taking refuge in it the gods became immortal, fearless.

5. He who pronounces the syllable, knowing it thus, takes refuge in that syllable, in the immortal, fearless sound. Since the gods became immortal by taking refuge in it, therefore he becomes immortal.

Fifth Khaṇḍa

The Udgītha identified with the sun and with breath

1. Now then, the Udgītha is Om; Om is the Udgītha. And so, verily, the Udgītha is yonder sun, and it is Om, for it is continually sounding ‘Om.

2. ‘I sang praise unto it alone; therefore you are my only [son],’ spake Kaushītaki unto his son. ‘Reflect upon its [various] rays. Verily, you will have many [sons].’

—Thus with reference to the divinities.

3. Now with reference to the self.—

One should reverence the Udgītha as that which is the breath in the mouth, for it is continually sounding ‘Om.

4. ‘I sang praise unto it alone; therefore you are my only [son],’ spake Kaushītaki unto his son. ‘Sing praise unto the breaths as a multitude. Verily, you will have many [sons].’

5. Now then, the Udgītha is Om; Om is the Udgītha. With this thought, verily, from the seat of a Hotṛi priest one puts in order again the Udgītha which has been falsely chanted—yea, puts it in order again.

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Sixth Khaṇḍa

The cosmic and personal interrelations of the Udgītha

1. The Ṛic is this [earth]; the Sāman is fire. This Sāman rests upon that Ṛic. Therefore the Sāman is sung as resting upon the Ṛic.1 is this [earth]; ama is fire. That makes sāma.

2. The Ṛic is the atmosphere; the Sāman is the wind. This Sāman rests upon that Ṛic. Therefore the Sāman is sung as resting upon the Ṛic. is the atmosphere; ama is the wind. That makes sāma.

3. The Ṛic is heaven; the Sāman is the sun. This Sāman rests upon that Ṛic. Therefore the Sāman is sung as resting upon the Ṛic. is heaven; ama is the sun. That makes sāma.

4. The Ṛic is the lunar mansions; the Sāman is the moon. This Sāman rests upon that Ṛic. Therefore the Sāman is sung as resting upon the Ṛic. is the lunar mansions; ama is the moon. That makes sāma.

5. Now, the Ṛic is the white shining of the sun; the Sāman is the dark, the ultra-black. This Sāman rests upon that Ṛic. Therefore the Sāman is sung as resting upon the Ṛic.

6. Now, is the white shining of the sun; ama is the dark, the ultra-black. That makes sāma.

Now, that golden Person who is seen within the sun has a golden beard and golden hair. He is exceedingly brilliant, all, even to the finger-nail tips.

7. His eyes are even as a Kapyāsa lotus-flower. His name is High (ud). He is raised high above all evils. Verily, he who knows this rises high above all evils.

8. His songs (geṣṇau) are the Ṛic and the Sāman. Therefore [they are called] the Udgītha. Therefore also the Udgātṛi priest [is so called], for he is the singer (gātṛ) of this [High (ud)]. He is lord of the worlds which are beyond yonder sun, and also of the gods’ desires.

—Thus with reference to the divinities.

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Seventh Khaṇḍa

1. Now with reference to the self.—

The Ṛic is speech; the Sāman is breath. This Sāman rests upon that Ṛic. Therefore the Sāman is sung as resting upon the Ṛic. is speech; ama is breath. That makes sāma.

2. The Ṛic is the eye; the Sāman is the soul (ātman). This Sāman rests upon that Ṛic. Therefore the Sāman is sung as resting upon the Ṛic. is the eye; ama is the soul. That makes sāma.

3. The Ṛic is the ear; the Sāman is the mind. This Sāman rests upon that Ṛic. Therefore the Sāman is sung as resting upon the Ṛic. is the ear; ama is the mind. That makes sāma.

4. Now, the Ṛic is the bright shining of the eye; the Sāman is the dark, the ultra-black. This Sāman rests upon that Ṛic. Therefore the Sāman is sung as resting upon the Ṛic. is the bright shining of the eye; ama is the dark, the ultra-black. That makes sāma.

5. Now, this person who is seen within the eye is the hymn (ṛc), is the chant (sāman), is the recitation (uktha), is the sacrificial formula (yajus), is the prayer (brahman).

The form of this one is the same as the form of that [Person seen in the sun]. The songs of the former are the songs of this. The name of the one is the name of the other.

6. He is lord of the worlds which are under this one, and also of men’s desires. So those who sing on the lute sing of him. Therefore they are winners of wealth.

7. Now, he who sings the Sāman, knowing it thus, sings of both; through the former he wins the worlds which are beyond the former, and also the gods’ desires.

8. Through the latter he wins the worlds which are under the latter, and also men’s desires. Therefore an Udgātṛi priest who knows this may say: [9] ‘What desire may I win for you by singing?’ For truly he is lord of the winning of desires by singing, who, knowing this, sings the Sāman—yea, sings the Sāman!

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Eighth Khaṇḍa

The Udgītha identified with the ultimate, i. e. space

1. There were three men proficient in the Udgītha: Śilaka Śālāvatya, Caikitāyana Dālbhya, and Pravāhaṇa Jaivali. These said: ‘We are proficient in the Udgītha. Come! Let us have a discussion on the Udgītha!’

2. ‘So be it,’ said they, and sat down together. Then Pravāhaṇa Jaivali said: ‘Do you two, Sirs, speak first. While there are two Brahmans speaking, I will listen to their word.’1

3. Then Śilaka Śālāvatya said to Caikitāyana Dālbhya: ‘Come! Let me question you.’

‘Question!’ said he.

4. ‘To what does the Sāman go back?’

‘To sound,’ said he.

‘To what does sound go back?’

‘To breath,’ said he.

‘To what does breath go back?’

‘To food,’ said he.

‘To what does food go back?’

‘To water,’ said he.

5. ‘To what does water go back?’

‘To yonder world,’ said he.

‘To what does yonder world go back?’

‘One should not lead beyond the heavenly world,’ said he. ‘We establish the Sāman upon the heavenly world, for the Sāman is praised as heaven.’

6. Then Śilaka Śālāvatya said to Caikitāyana Dālbhya: ‘Verily, indeed, your Sāman, O Dālbhya, is unsupported. If some one now were to say “Your head will fall off,” your head would fall off.’

7. ‘Come! Let me learn this from you, Sir.’

‘Learn,’ said he.

‘To what does yonder world go back?’

‘To this world,’ said he.

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‘To what does this world go back?’

‘One should not lead beyond the world-support,’ said he. ‘We establish the Sāman upon the world as a support, for the Sāman is praised as a support.’

8. Then Pravāhaṇa Jaivali said to him: ‘Verily, indeed, your Sāman, O Śālāvatya, comes to an end. If some one now were to say “Your head will fall off,” your head would fall off.’

‘Come! Let me learn this from you, Sir.’

‘Learn,’ said he.

Ninth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘To what does this world go back?’

‘To space,’ said he. ‘Verily, all things here arise out of space. They disappear back into space, for space alone is greater than these; space is the final goal.

2. This is the most excellent Udgītha. This is endless. The most excellent is his, the most excellent worlds does he win, who, knowing it thus, reverences the most excellent Udgītha.

3. When Atidhanvan Śaunaka told this Udgītha to Udaraśāṇḍilya, he also said: “As far as they shall know this Udgītha among your offspring, so far will they have the most excellent life in this world, [4] and likewise a world in yonder world.” He who knows and reverences it thus has the most excellent life in this world, and likewise a world in yonder world—yea, a world in yonder world.’

Tenth Khaṇḍa

The divinities connected with the three parts of the Chant

1. Among the Kurus, when they were struck by hailstorms, there lived in the village of a rich man a very poor man, Ushasti Cākrāyaṇa, with his wife Āṭikī.

2. He begged of the rich man while he was eating beans. The latter said to him: ‘I have no others than these which are set before me.’

3. ‘Give me some of them,’ said he.

He gave them to him and said: ‘Here is drink.’

‘Verily, that would be for me to drink leavings!’ said he.

4. ‘Are not these [beans] also leavings?’

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‘Verily, I could not live, if I did not eat those,’ said he. ‘The drinking of water is at my will.’

5. When he had eaten, he took what still remained to his wife. She had already begged enough to eat. She took these and put them away.

6. On the morrow he arose and said: ‘Oh, if we could get some food, we might get a little money! The king over there is going to have a sacrifice performed for himself. He might choose me to perform all the priestly offices.’

7. His wife said to him: ‘Here, my lord, are the beans.’ He ate them and went off to that sacrifice, which had already been begun.

8. There he approached the Udgātṛi priests as they were about to sing the Stotra in the place for the singing. Then he said to the Prastotṛi priest: [9] ‘Prastotṛi priest, if you shall sing the Prastāva (Introductory Praise) without knowing the divinity which is connected with the Prastāva, your head will fall off.’

10. Similarly also he said to the Udgātṛi priest: ‘Udgātṛi priest, if you shall chant the Udgītha (Loud Chant) without knowing the divinity which is connected with the Udgītha, your head will fall off.’

11. Similarly also he said to the Pratihartṛi priest: ‘Pratihartṛi priest, if you shall take up the Pratihāra (Response) without knowing the divinity which is connected with the Pratihāra, your head will fall off.’

Then they ceased and quietly seated themselves.

Eleventh Khaṇḍa

1. Then the institutor of the sacrifice said to him: ‘Verily, I would wish to know you, Sir.’

‘I am Ushasti Cākrāyaṇa,’ said he.

2. Then he [i.e. the institutor] said: ‘Verily, I have been searching around for you, Sir, for all these priestly offices. Verily, not finding you, Sir, I have chosen others. [3] But do you, Sir, perform all the priestly offices for me.’

‘So be it,’ said he (iti). ‘But in this matter (tarhi) let these, indeed, being permitted, sing the Stotra; but you should give me as much money as you would give them.’

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‘So be it,’ said the institutor of the sacrifice.

4. Then the Prastotṛi priest approached him and said: ‘You, Sir, said unto me: “Prastotṛi priest, if you shall sing the Prastāva without knowing the divinity which is connected with the Prastāva, your head will fall off.” Which is that divinity?’

5. ‘Breath (prāṇa),’ said he. ‘Verily, indeed, all beings here enter [into life] with breath and depart [from life] with breath. This is the divinity connected with the Prastāva. If you had sung the Prastāva without knowing it, your head would have fallen off, after you had been told so by me.’

6. Then the Udgātṛi priest approached him and said: ‘You, Sir, said unto me: “Udgātṛi priest, if you shall chant the Udgītha without knowing the divinity which is connected with the Udgītha, your head will fall off.” Which is that divinity?’

7. ‘The Sun,’ said he. ‘Verily, indeed, all beings here sing (gāyanti) of the sun when he is up (uccais). This is the divinity connected with the Udgītha. If you had chanted the Udgītha without knowing it, your head would have fallen off, after you had been told so by me.’

8. Then the Pratihartṛi priest approached him and said: ‘You, Sir, said unto me: “Pratihartṛi priest, if you shall take up the Pratihāra without knowing the divinity which is connected with the Pratihāra, your head will fall off.” Which is that divinity?’

9. ‘Food,’ said he. ‘Verily, indeed, all beings here live by taking up to themselves (pratiharamāṇa) food. This is the divinity connected with the Pratihāra. If you had taken up the Pratihāra without knowing it, your head would have fallen off, after you had been told so by me.’

Twelfth Khaṇḍa

A satire on the performances of the priests (?)

1. Now next, the Udgītha of the Dogs.—

So Bāka Dālbhya—or Glāva Maitreya—went forth for Veda-study.

2. Unto him there appeared a white dog. Around this one Edition: current; Page: [189] other dogs gathered and said: ‘Do you, Sir, obtain food for us by singing. Verily, we are hungry.’

3. Then he said to them: ‘In the morning you may assemble unto me here at this spot.’ So Bāka Dālbhya—or Glāva Maitreya—kept watch.

4. Then, even as [priests] here, when they are about to chant with the Bahishpavamāna Stotra, glide hand in hand, so did they glide on. Then they sat down together and performed the preliminary vocalizing (hiṅkāra).

5. They sang: ‘Om! Let us eat. Om! Let us drink. Om! May the god Varuṇa, Prajāpati, and Savitṛi bring food here! O Lord of food, bring food here!—yea, bring it here! Om!’

Thirteenth Khaṇḍa1

The mystical meaning of certain sounds in the Chant

1. Verily, the sound hā-u is the world, [for this interjectional trill occurs in the Rathantara Sāman, which is identified with the earth].

The sound hā-i is wind. [for this interjectional trill occurs in the Vāmadevya Sāman, which has for its subject the origin of wind and water].

The sound atha is the moon, [for on food (anna) everything is established (sthita), and the moon consists of food].

The sound iha is oneself, [for oneself is here (iha)].

The sound ī is Agni, [for all Sāmans sacred to Agni end with the sound ī].

2. The sound ū is the sun, [for people sing of the sun when it is up (ū-rdhvam)].

The sound e is the Invocation, [for people call with ‘Come! (e-hi)’].

The sound au-ho-i is the Viśvadeva gods, [for this interjectional trill occurs in the Sāman to the Viśvadeva gods].

The sound hiṅ is Prajāpati, [for Prajāpati is undefined, and the sound hiṅ also is indistinct].

svara (sound) is breath, [for that is the source of sound].

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is food, [for everything here moves (yati) through the help of food].

vāc is Virāj, [for this interjectional trill occurs in the Sāman to Virāj].

3. The sound hum, the variable thirteenth interjectional trill, is the Undefined.

4. Speech yields milk—that is, the milk of speech itself—for him, he becomes rich in food, an eater of food,1 who knows thus this mystic meaning (upaniṣad) of the Sāmans—yea, who knows the mystic meaning!

SECOND PRAPĀṬHAKA
The significance of the Chant in various forms

First Khaṇḍa

The Chant, good in various significances

1. Om! Assuredly, the reverence of the Sāman entire (samasta) is good (sādhu). Assuredly, anything that is good, people call sāman (abundance); anything that is not good, a-sāman (deficiency).

2. So also people say: ‘He approached him with sāman (kindliness2)’; that is, they say: ‘He approached him with good manner (sādhu).’—‘He approached him with no sāman’; that is, they say: ‘He approached him with no good manner.’

3. So also, further, people say: ‘Oh! we have sāman (goods3)!’ if it is something good (sādhu); that is, they say: ‘Oh! good!’—‘Oh! we have no sāman!’ if it is not good; that is, they say: ‘Oh! no good!’

4. He who, knowing this, reverences the Sāman as good—truly the prospect is that good qualities will come unto him and attend him.

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Second Khaṇḍa

Some analogies to the fivefold Chant

1. In the worlds one should reverence a fivefold Sāman (Chant).

  • The earth is a Hiṅkāra (Preliminary Vocalizing).
  • Fire is a Prastāva (Introductory Praise).
  • The atmosphere is an Udgītha (Loud Chant).
  • The sun is a Pratihāra (Response).
  • The sky is a Nidhana (Conclusion).1

—Thus in their ascending order.

2. Now in their reverse order.—

  • The sky is a Hiṅkāra.
  • The sun is a Prastāva.
  • The atmosphere is an Udgītha.
  • Fire is a Pratihāra.
  • The earth is a Nidhana.

3. The worlds, both in their ascending order and in their reverse order, serve him who, knowing this thus, reverences a fivefold Sāman in the worlds.

Third Khaṇḍa

1. In a rain-storm one should reverence a fivefold Sāman.

  • The preceding wind is a Hiṅkāra.
  • A cloud is formed—that is a Prastāva.
  • It rains—that is an Udgītha.
  • It lightens, it thunders—that is a Pratihāra.

2. It lifts—that is a Nidhana.2

It rains for him, indeed, he causes it to rain, who, knowing this thus, reverences a fivefold Sāman in a rain-storm.

Fourth Khaṇḍa

1. In all waters one should reverence a fivefold Sāman.

  • When a cloud gathers—that is a Hiṅkāra.
  • When it rains—that is a Prastāva.
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  • Those [waters] which flow to the east—they are an Udgītha.
  • Those which flow to the west—they are a Pratihāra.
  • The ocean is a Nidhana.

2. He perishes not in water, he becomes rich in water, who, knowing this thus, reverences a fivefold Sāman in all waters.

Fifth Khaṇḍa

1. In the seasons one should reverence a fivefold Sāman.

  • The spring is a Hiṅkāra.
  • The summer is a Prastāva.
  • The rainy season is an Udgītha.
  • The autumn is a Pratihāra.
  • The winter is a Nidhana.

2. The seasons serve him, he becomes rich in seasons, who, knowing this thus, reverences a fivefold Sāman in the seasons.

Sixth Khaṇḍa

1. In animals one should reverence a fivefold Sāman.

  • Goats are a Hiṅkāra.
  • Sheep are a Prastāva.
  • Cows are an Udgītha.
  • Horses are a Pratihāra.
  • Man is a Nidhana.

2. Animals come into his possession, he becomes rich in animals, who, knowing this thus, reverences a fivefold Sāman in animals.

Seventh Khaṇḍa

1. In the vital breaths (prāṇa) one should reverence the most excellent fivefold Sāman.

  • Breath is a Hiṅkāra.
  • Speech is a Prastāva.
  • The eye is an Udgītha.
  • The ear is a Pratihāra.
  • The mind is a Nidhana.

Verily, these are the most excellent.

2. The most excellent becomes his, he wins the most Edition: current; Page: [193] excellent worlds, who, knowing this thus, reverences the most excellent fivefold Sāman in the vital breaths.

—So much for the fivefold.

Eighth Khaṇḍa

Some analogies to the sevenfold Chant

1. Now for the sevenfold.—

In speech one should reverence a sevenfold Sāman.

Whatsoever of speech is hum—that is a Hiṅkāra (Preliminary Vocalizing).

Whatsoever is pra—that is a Prastāva (Introductory Praise).

Whatsoever is ā—that is an Ādi (Beginning).

2. Whatsoever is ud—that is an Udgītha (Loud Chant).

Whatsoever is prati—that is a Pratihāra (Response).

Whatsoever is upa—that is an Upadrava (Approach to the End).

Whatsoever is ni—that is a Nidhana (Conclusion).1

3. Speech yields milk—that is, the milk of speech itself—for him, he becomes rich in food, an eater of food,2 who, knowing this thus, reverences a sevenfold Sāman in speech.

Ninth Khaṇḍa

1. Now, verily, one should reverence yonder sun as a sevenfold Sāman. It is always the same (sama); therefore it is a Sāman. It is the same with everyone, since people think: ‘It faces me! It faces me!’ Therefore it is a Sāman.

2. One should know that all beings here are connected with it.

When it is before sunrise—that is a Hiṅkāra (Preliminary Vocalizing). Animals are connected with this [part] of it. Therefore they perform preliminary vocalizing. Truly, they are partakers in the Hiṅkāra of that Sāman.

3. Now, when it is just after sunrise—that is a Prastāva (Introductory Praise). Men are connected with this [part] of Edition: current; Page: [194] it. Therefore they are desirous of praise (prastuti), desirous of laudation. Truly, they are partakers in the Prastāva of that Sāman.

4. Now, when it is the cowgathering-time—that is an Ādi (Beginning). The birds are connected with this [part] of it. Therefore they support (ādāya) themselves without support (an-ārambaṇa) in the atmosphere and fly around. Truly, they are partakers in the Ādi of that Sāman.

5. Now, when it is just at mid-day—that is an Udgītha (Loud Chant). The gods are connected with this [part] of it. Therefore they are the best of Prajāpati’s offspring. Truly, they are partakers in the Udgītha of that Sāman.

6. Now, when it is past mid-day and before [the latter part of] the afternoon—that is a Pratihāra (Response). Fetuses are connected with this [part] of it. Therefore they are taken [or, held] up (pratihrta) and do not drop down. Truly, they are partakers in the Pratihāra of that Sāman.

7. Now, when it is past afternoon and before sunset—that is an Upadrava (Approach to the end). Wild beasts are connected with this [part] of it. Therefore when they see a man, they approach (upadravanti) a hiding-place as their hole. Truly, they are partakers in the Upadrava of that Sāman.

8. Now, when it is just after sunset—that is the Nidhana (Conclusion). The fathers are connected with this [part] of it. Therefore people lay aside (ni + √dhā) the fathers. Truly, they are partakers in the Nidhana of that Sāman.

Tenth Khaṇḍa

The mystical significance of the number of syllables in the parts of a sevenfold Chant

1. Now then, one should reverence the Sāman, measured (sammita) in itself, as leading beyond death.

hiṅkāra has three syllables. prastāva has three syllables. That is the same (sama).

2. ādi has two syllables. pratihāra has four syllables. One from there, here—that is the same.

3. udgītha has three syllables. upadrava has four syllables. Edition: current; Page: [195] Three and three—that is the same, one syllable left over. Having three syllables—that is the same.

4. nidhana has three syllables. That is the same, too. These are twenty-two syllables.

5. With the twenty-one one obtains the sun. Verily, the sun is the twenty-first from here.1 With the twenty-two one wins what is beyond the sun. That is heaven (nākam). That is the sorrowless.2

6. He obtains the victory of the sun, indeed, a victory higher than the victory of the sun is his, who, knowing this thus, reverences the sevenfold Sāman, measured in itself, as leading beyond death—yea, who reverences the Sāman!

Eleventh Khaṇḍa

The analogical bases of the ten species of the fivefold Chant

  • 1. The wind is a Hiṅkāra.
  • Speech is a Prastāva.
  • The eye is an Udgītha.
  • The ear is a Pratihāra.
  • The breath is a Nidhana.

This is the Gāyatrī Sāman as woven upon the vital breaths (prāṇa).

2. He who knows thus this Gāyatrī Sāman as woven upon the vital breaths becomes possessor of vital breaths, reaches a full length of life, lives long, becomes great in offspring and in cattle, great in fame. One should be great-minded. That is his rule.

Twelfth Khaṇḍa

  • 1. One rubs the fire-sticks together—that is a Hiṅkāra.
  • Smoke is produced—that is a Prastāva.
  • It blazes—that is an Udgītha.
  • Coals are formed—that is a Pratihāra.
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  • It becomes extinct—that is a Nidhana.
  • It becomes completely extinct—that is a Nidhana.

This is the Rathantara Sāman as woven upon fire.

2. He who knows thus this Rathantara Sāman as woven upon fire becomes an eater of food, eminent in sacred knowledge, reaches a full length of life, lives long, becomes great in offspring and in cattle, great in fame. One should not take a sip and spit toward fire. That is his rule.

Thirteenth Khaṇḍa

  • 1. One summons—that is a Hiṅkāra.
  • He makes request—that is a Prastāva.
  • Together with the woman he lies down—that is an Udgītha.
  • He lies upon the woman—that is a Pratihāra.
  • He comes to the end—that is a Nidhana.
  • He comes to the finish—that is a Nidhana.1

This is the Vāmadevya Sāman as woven upon copulation.

2. He who knows thus this Vāmadevya Sāman as woven upon copulation comes to copulation, procreates himself from every copulation, reaches a full length of life, lives long, becomes great in offspring and in cattle, great in fame. One should never abstain from any woman. That is his rule.

Fourteenth Khaṇḍa

  • 1. The rising sun is a Hiṅkāra.
  • The risen sun is a Prastāva.
  • Mid-day is an Udgītha.
  • Afternoon is a Pratihāra.
  • When it is set—that is a Nidhana.

This is the Bṛihad Sāman as woven upon the sun.

2. He who knows thus this Bṛihad Sāman as woven upon the sun becomes a brilliant eater of food, reaches a full length of life, lives long, becomes great in offspring and in cattle, great in fame. One should not find fault with it when it is hot. That is his rule.

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Fifteenth Khaṇḍa

  • 1. Mists come together—that is a Hiṅkāra.
  • A cloud is formed—that is a Prastāva.
  • It rains—that is an Udgītha.
  • It lightens and thunders—that is a Pratihāra.
  • It holds up—that is a Nidhana.

This is the Vairūpa Sāman as woven upon rain (pārjanya).

2. He who knows thus this Vairūpa Sāman as woven upon rain acquires cattle both of various form (vi-rūpa) and of beautiful form (su-rūpa), reaches a full length of life, lives long, becomes great in children and in cattle, great in fame. One should not find fault with it when it rains. That is his rule.

Sixteenth Khaṇḍa

  • 1. Spring is a Hiṅkāra.
  • Summer is a Prastāva.
  • The rainy season is an Udgītha.
  • Autumn is a Pratihāra.
  • Winter is a Nidhana.

This is the Vairāja Sāman as woven upon the seasons.

2. He who knows thus this Vairāja Sāman as woven upon the seasons shines like a king (virajati) with offspring, cattle, and eminence in sacred knowledge, reaches a full length of life, lives long, becomes great in offspring and cattle, great in fame. One should not find fault with the seasons. That is his rule.

Seventeenth Khaṇḍa

  • 1. The earth is a Hiṅkāra.
  • The atmosphere is a Prastāva.
  • The sky is an Udgītha.
  • The regions of the compass are a Pratihāra.
  • The ocean is a Nidhana.

These are the verses of the Śakvarī Sāman as woven upon the worlds.

2. He who knows thus these verses of the Śakvarī Sāman as woven upon the worlds becomes possessor of a world, Edition: current; Page: [198] reaches a full length of life, lives long, becomes great in offspring and in cattle, great in fame. One should not find fault with the worlds. That is his rule.

Eighteenth Khaṇḍa

  • 1. Goats are a Hiṅkāra.
  • Sheep are a Prastāva.
  • Cows are an Udgītha.
  • Horses are a Pratihāra.
  • Man is a Nidhana.

These are the verses of the Revatī Sāman as woven upon animals.

2. He who knows thus these verses of the Revatī Sāman as woven upon animals becomes possessor of animals, reaches a full length of life, lives long, becomes great in offspring and in cattle, great in fame. One should not find fault with animals. That is his rule.

Nineteenth Khaṇḍa

  • 1. Hair is a Hiṅkāra.
  • Skin is a Prastāva.
  • Flesh is an Udgītha.
  • Bone is a Pratihāra.
  • Marrow is a Nidhana.

This is the Yajñāyajñīya Sāman as woven upon the members of the body.

2. He who knows thus this Yajñāyajñīya Sāman as woven upon the members of the body becomes possessor of the members of his body, does not become defective in any member of the body, reaches a full length of life, lives long, becomes great in offspring and in cattle, great in fame. One should not eat of marrow for a year. That is his rule. Rather, one should not eat of marrow at all.

Twentieth Khaṇḍa

  • 1. Agni (Fire) is a Hiṅkāra.
  • Vāyu (Wind) is a Prastāva.
  • Āditya (Sun) is an Udgītha.
  • The Nakshatras (Stars) are a Pratihāra.
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  • Candrama (Moon) is a Nidhana.

This is the Rājana Sāman as woven upon the divinities.

2. He who knows thus this Rājana Sāman as woven upon the divinities goes to the same world, to equality and to complete union (sāyujya) with those very divinities, reaches a full length of life, lives long, becomes great in offspring and in cattle, great in fame. One should not find fault with the Brahmans.1 That is his rule.

Twenty-first Khaṇḍa

The Sāman itself based on the world-all

  • 1. The triple knowledge2 is a Hiṅkāra.
  • The three worlds3 here are a Prastāva.
  • Agni, Vāyu, and Āditya4 are an Udgītha.
  • Stars, birds, and light-rays are a Pratihāra.
  • Serpents, Gandharvas, and the Fathers are a Nidhana.

This is the Sāman as woven upon the world-all.

2. He who knows thus this Sāman as woven upon the world-all becomes the world-all itself.

3. On this point there is this verse:—

    • Whatever triple things are fivefold—
    • Than these things there is nothing better, higher.
    • 4. Who knows this fact, he knows the world-all;
    • All regions of the compass bring him tribute.

One should reverence the thought ‘I am the world-all!’ That is his rule. That is his rule!

Twenty-second Khaṇḍa

Seven different modes of singing the chant, characteristic of different gods

1. ‘I choose the roaring, animal-like form of the Sāman’—such is the Udgītha belonging to Agni. The indistinct form belongs to Prajāpati; the distinct, to Soma; the soft and smooth, to Vāyu; the smooth and strong, to Indra; the Edition: current; Page: [200] heron-like, to Bṛihaspati; the ill-sounding, to Varuṇa. One may practise all these, but one should avoid that belonging to Varuṇa.

Various desired results of chanting

2. ‘Let me obtain immortality for the gods by singing’—thus should one obtain with his singing. ‘Let me obtain oblation for the fathers by singing, hope for men, grass and water for cattle, a heavenly world for the sacrificer, food for myself (ātman)’—one should sing the Stotra carefully, meditating these things in mind.

The various sounds in the chant under the protection of different gods

3. All vowels are embodiments (ātman) of Indra. All spirants are embodiments of Prajāpati. All [other] consonants are embodiments of Mṛityu (Death).

If one should reproach a person on his vowels, let him say to that one: ‘I have been a suppliant to Indra for protection. He will answer you.’

4. So, if one should reproach him on his spirants, let him say to that one: ‘I have been a suppliant to Prajāpati for protection. He will thrash you.’

So, if one should reproach him on his [other] consonants, let him say to that one: ‘I have been a suppliant to Mṛityu (Death) for protection. He will burn you up.’

5. All the vowels should be pronounced strong and sonant, with the thought: ‘To Indra let me give strength.’ All the spirants should be pronounced well open, without being slurred over, without being elided, with the thought: ‘To Prajāpati let me entrust myself.’ All the [other] consonants should be pronounced slowly, without being merged together, with the thought: ‘From Mṛityu (Death) let me withdraw myself (ātman).’

Twenty-third Khaṇḍa

Different modes of religious life

1. There are three branches of duty. Sacrifice, study of the Vedas, alms-giving—that is the first. (2) Austerity, indeed, Edition: current; Page: [201] is the second. A student of sacred knowledge (brahmacārin) dwelling in the house of a teacher, settling himself permanently in the house of a teacher, is the third.

All these become possessors of meritorious worlds. He who stands firm in Brahma attains immortality.

The syllable ‘Om,’ the acme of the cosmogony

2 (3). Prajāpati brooded upon the worlds. From them, when they had been brooded upon, issued forth the threefold knowledge.1 He brooded upon this. From it, when it had been brooded upon, issued forth these syllables: bhūr, bhuvaḥ, svar.2

3 (4). He brooded upon them. From them, when they had been brooded upon, issued forth the syllable Om. As all leaves are held together by a spike, so all speech is held together by Om. Verily, Om is the world-all. Verily, Om is this world-all.

Twenty-fourth Khaṇḍa

Earth, atmosphere, and sky the reward for performers of the morning, noon, and evening oblations

1. The expounders of sacred knowledge (brahmavādin) say: ‘Since to the Vasus belongs the morning Soma-libation, to the Rudras the mid-day Soma-libation, to the Ādityas and the Viśvadevas the third Soma-libation, [2] where, then (tarhi), is the sacrificer’s world?’

If one knows not, how can he perform [the sacrifice with success]? So let him who knows perform.

3. Before the commencement of the morning litany he sits down behind the Gārhapatya fire, facing the north, and sings forth the Sāman to the Vasus:—

  • 4. ‘Open the door to thy world,
  • And let us see thee,
  • For the obtaining of
  • The sovereignty!’3
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5. So he offers the oblation and says: ‘Adoration to Agni, earth-inhabiting, world-inhabiting! Find a world for me, the sacrificer! Verily, that is the sacrificer’s world! I will go [6] thither, I, the sacrificer, after life. Hail! Thrust back the bar!’ Thus having spoken, he rises. At the same time the Vasus bestow upon him the morning Soma-libation.

7. Before the commencement of the mid-day Soma-libation he sits down behind the Āgnīdhrīya fire, facing the north, and sings forth the Sāman to the Rudras:—

  • 8. ‘Open the door to thy world,
  • And let us see thee,
  • For the obtaining of
  • Wide sovereignty!’

9. So he offers the libation and says: ‘Adoration to Vāyu, atmosphere-inhabiting, world-inhabiting! Find a world for me, the sacrificer! Verily, that is the sacrificer’s world! I will go [10] thither, I, the sacrificer, after life. Hail! Thrust back the bar!’ Thus having spoken, he rises. At the same time the Rudras bestow upon him the mid-day Soma-libation.

11. Before the commencement of the third Soma-libation he sits down behind the Āhavanīya fire, facing the north, and sings forth the Sāman to the Ādityas and the Viśvadevas:—

  • 12. ‘Open the door to thy world,
  • And let us see thee,
  • For the obtaining of
  • Chief sovereignty!’

13. Thus the [Sāman] to the Ādityas. Now the [Sāman] to the Viśvadevas:—

  • ‘Open the door to thy world,
  • And let us see thee,
  • For the obtaining of
  • Full sovereignty!’

14. So he offers the oblation and says: ‘Adoration to the Ādityas and to the Viśvadevas, sky-inhabiting, world-inhabiting! Find a world for me, the sacrificer! [15] Verily, that is the sacrificer’s world! I will go thither, I, the sacrificer, after life. Hail! Thrust back the bar!’ Thus having spoken, he rises. At the same time the Ādityas and the Viśvadevas bestow upon him the third Soma-libation.

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Verily, he knows the fulness of the sacrifice who knows this—yea, who knows this!

THIRD PRAPĀṬHAKA
Brahma as the sun of the world-all

First Khaṇḍa

The sun as the honey extracted from all the Vedas

1. Verily, yonder sun is the honey of the gods. The cross-beam1 for it is the sky. The honeycomb is the atmosphere. The brood are the particles of light.

2. The eastern rays of that sun are its eastern honey-cells. The bees are the Rig verses. The flower is the Rig-Veda. The drops of nectar fluid [arose as follows].

Verily, these Rig verses [3] brooded upon that Rig-Veda; from it, when it had been brooded upon, there was produced as its essence splendor, brightness, power, vigor, and food.

4. If flowed forth. It repaired to the sun. Verily, that is what that red appearance of the sun is.

Second Khaṇḍa

1. So its southern rays are its southern honey-cells. The bees are the Yajus formulas. The flower is the Yajur-Veda. The drops of nectar fluid [arose as follows].

2. Verily, these Yajus formulas brooded upon that Yajur-Veda; from it, when it had been brooded upon, there was produced as its essence splendor, brightness, power, vigor, and food.

3. It flowed forth. It repaired to the sun. Verily, that is what that white appearance of the sun is.

Third Khaṇḍa

1. So its western rays are its western honey-cells. The bees are the Sāman chants. The flower is the Sāma-Veda. The drops of nectar fluid [arose as follows].

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2. Verily, those Sāman chants brooded upon that Sāma-Veda. From it, when it had been brooded upon, there was produced as its essence splendor, brightness, power, vigor, and food.

3. It flowed forth. It repaired to the sun. Verily, that is what that dark appearance of the sun is.

Fourth Khaṇḍa

1. So its northern rays are its northern honey-cells. The bees are the [Hymns] of the Atharvans and Aṅgirases.1 The flower is Legend and Ancient Lore (itiliāsa-purāṇa). The drops of nectar fluid [arose as follows].

2. Verily, those [Hymns] of the Atharvans and Aṅgirases brooded upon that Legend and Ancient Lore. From it, when it had been brooded upon, there was produced as its essence splendor, brightness, power, vigor, and food.

3. It flowed forth. It repaired to the sun. Verily, that is what that exceedingly dark appearance of the sun is.

Fifth Khaṇḍa

1. So its upward rays are its upper honey-cells. The bees are the Hidden Teachings [i.e. the Upanishads]. The flower is Brahma. The drops of nectar fluid [arose as follows].

2. Verily, those Hidden Teachings brooded upon that Brahma; from it, when it had been brooded upon, there was produced as its essence splendor, brightness, power, vigor, and food.

3. It flowed forth. It repaired to the sun. Verily, that is what seems to tremble in the middle of the sun.

4. Verily, these are the essences of the essences, for the Vedas are essences and these are their essences. Verily, these are the nectars of the nectars, for the Vedas are nectars and these are their nectars.

Sixth Khaṇḍa

The knower of the cosmic significance of the sacred scriptures advances to the world-sun, Brahma

1. The Vasus live upon that which is the first nectar [i.e. the Edition: current; Page: [205] Rig-Veda] through Agni as their mouth. Verily, the gods neither eat nor drink. They are satisfied merely with seeing that nectar.

2. These enter that [red] form of the sun and come forth from that form.

3. He who knows thus that nectar becomes one of the Vasus themselves and through Agni as his mouth is satisfied merely with seeing that nectar. He enters that very form and comes forth from that form.

4. As long as the sun shall rise in the east and set in the west, so long will he compass the overlordship and the chief sovereignty (svārājya) of the Vasus.

Seventh Khaṇḍa

1. Now, the Rudras live upon what is the second nectar [i. e. the Yajur-Veda] through Indra as their mouth. Verily, the gods neither eat nor drink. They are satisfied merely with seeing that nectar.

2. These enter that [white] form and come forth from that form.

3. He who knows thus that nectar becomes one of the Rudras themselves and through Indra as his mouth is satisfied merely with seeing that nectar. He enters that very form and comes forth from that form.

4. As long as the sun shall rise in the east and set in the west, twice so long will it rise in the south and set in the north, and just that long will he compass the overlordship and the chief sovereignty of the Rudras.

Eighth Khaṇḍa

1. Now, the Ādityas live upon what is the third nectar [i. e. the Sāma-Veda] through Varuṇa as their mouth. Verily, the gods neither eat nor drink. They are satisfied merely with seeing that nectar.

2. These enter that [dark] form and come forth from that form.

3. He who knows thus that nectar becomes one of the Ādityas themselves and through Varuṇa as his mouth is Edition: current; Page: [206] satisfied merely with seeing that nectar. He enters that very form and comes forth from that form.

4. So long as the sun shall rise in the south and set in the north, twice so long will it rise in the west and set in the east, and just that long will he compass the over-lordship and the chief sovereignty of the Ādityas.

Ninth Khaṇḍa

1. Now, the Maruts live upon what is the fourth nectar [i.e. the Atharva-Veda] through Soma as their mouth. Verily, the gods neither eat nor drink. They are satisfied merely with seeing that nectar.

2. These enter that [exceedingly dark] form and come forth from that form.

3. He who knows thus that nectar becomes one of the Maruts themselves and through Soma as his mouth is satisfied merely with seeing that nectar. He enters that very form and comes forth from that form.

4. As long as the sun shall rise in the west and set in the east, twice so long will it rise in the north and set in the south, and just that long will he compass the the overlordship and the chief sovereignty of the Maruts.

Tenth Khaṇḍa

1. Now, the Sādhyas live upon what is the fifth nectar [i. e. the Upanishads] through Brahma as their mouth. Verily, the gods neither eat nor drink. They are satisfied merely with seeing that nectar.

2. These enter that form [which seems to tremble in the middle of the sun] and come forth from that form.

3. He who knows thus that nectar becomes one of the Sādhyas themselves and through Brahma as his mouth is satisfied merely with seeing that nectar. He enters that very form and comes forth from that form.

4. As long as the sun shall rise in the north and set in the south, twice so long will it rise in the zenith and set in the nadir, and just that long will he compass the overlordship and the chief sovereignty of the Sādhyas.

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Eleventh Khaṇḍa

1. Henceforth, after having risen in the zenith, it will no more rise nor set. It will stand alone in the middle. On this point there is this verse:—

  • 2. In yonder sphere it has not set,1
  • Nor ever has it risen up;
  • And by the truth of this, ye gods,
  • Of Brahma let me not be robbed.

3. Verily, it neither rises nor sets for him, it is evermore day for him, who knows thus this mystic doctrine (upaniṣad) of Brahma.

4. Brahma told this to Prajāpati; Prajāpati, to Manu; Manu, to his descendants. To Uddālaka Āruṇi, as being the eldest son, his father declared this Brahma.

5. Verily, a father may teach this Brahma to his eldest son or to a worthy pupil, [6] [but] to no one else at all. Even if one should offer him this [earth] that is encompassed by water and filled with treasure, [he should say]: ‘This, truly, is more than that! This, truly, is more than that!’

Twelfth Khaṇḍa

The Gāyatrī meter as a symbol of all that is

1. Verily, the Gāyatrī meter is everything here that has come to be, whatsoever there is here. Verily, the Gāyatrī is speech. Verily, speech both sings of (gāyati) and protects (trāyate) everything here that has come to be.

2. Verily, what this Gāyatrī is—that is the same as what this earth is; for on it everything here that has come to be is established. It does not extend beyond it.

3. Verily, what this earth is—that is the same as what the body in man here is; for in it these vital breaths are established. They do not extend beyond it.

4. Verily, what the body in man is—that is the same as what the heart within man here is; for on it these vital breaths are established. They do not extend beyond it.

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5. This is the four-quartered sixfold Gāyatrī. With reference to it a Rig verse states:—

  • 6. His greatness is of such extent,
  • Yet Purusha is greater still.
  • All beings are one fourth of him;
  • Three fourths, the immortal in the sky.1

7. Verily, what is called Brahma—that is the same as what the space outside of a person is. Verily, what the space outside of a person is—[8] that is the same as what the space within a person is. Verily, what the space within a person is—[9] that is the same as what the space here within the heart is. That is the Full, the Non-active.2 Full, non-active prosperity he obtains who knows this.

Thirteenth Khaṇḍa

The five door-keepers of the heavenly world

1. Verily, indeed, this heart here has five openings for the gods.

As for its eastern opening—that is the Piāṇa breath, that is the eye, that is the sun. One should reverence that as glow and as food. He becomes glowing and an eater of food who knows this.

2. Now, as for its southern opening—that is the Vyāna breath, that is the ear, that is the moon. One should reverence that as prosperity and splendor. He becomes prosperous and splendid who knows this.

3. Now, as for its western opening—that is the Apāna breath, that is speech, that is fire. One should reverence that as eminence in sacred knowledge and as food. He becomes eminent in sacred knowledge and an eater of food who knows this.

4. Now, as for its northern opening—that is the Samāna breath, that is mind, that is the rain-god (Parjanya). One should reverence that as fame and beauty. He becomes famous and beauteous who knows this.

5. Now as for its upper opening—that is the Udāna breath, Edition: current; Page: [209] that is wind, that is space. One should reverence that as vigor and greatness. He becomes vigorous and great who knows this.

6. Verily, these same are five Brahma-men, door-keepers of the heavenly world. Who knows these thus as five Brahma-men, as door-keepers of the heavenly world, in his family a hero is born. He reaches the heavenly world who knows these thus as five Brahma-men, door-keepers of the heavenly world.

The ultimate exists within oneself

7. Now, the light which shines higher than this heaven, on the backs of all, on the backs of everything, in the highest worlds, than which there are no higher—verily, that is the same as this light which is here within a person.

There is this seeing of it—[8] when one perceives by touch this heat here in the body. There is this hearing of it—when one closes his ears and hears as it were a sound, as it were a noise, as of a fire blazing. One should reverence that light as something that has been seen and heard. He becomes one beautiful to see, one heard of in renown, who knows this—yea, who knows this!

Fourteenth Khaṇḍa1

The individual soul identical with the infinite Brahma

1. ‘Verily, this whole world is Brahma. Tranquil, let one worship It as that from which he came forth, as that into which he will be dissolved, as that in which he breathes.2

Now, verily, a person consists of purpose (kratu-maya). According to the purpose which a person has in this world, thus does he become on departing hence. So let him form for himself a purpose.

2. He who consists of mind, whose body is life (prāṇa), whose form is light, whose conception is truth, whose soul (ātman) is space, containing all works, containing all desires, containing all odors, containing all tastes, encompassing this Edition: current; Page: [210] whole world, the unspeaking, the unconcerned—[3] this Soul of mine within the heart is smaller than a grain of rice, or a barley-corn, or a mustard-seed, or a grain of millet, or the kernel of a grain of millet; this Soul of mine within the heart is greater than the earth, greater than the atmosphere, greater than the sky, greater than these worlds.

4. Containing all works, containing all desires, containing all odors, containing all tastes, encompassing this whole world, the unspeaking, the unconcerned—this is the Soul of mine within the heart, this is Brahma. Into him I shall enter on departing hence.

If one would believe this, he would have no more doubt.—Thus used Śāṇḍilya to say—yea, Śāṇḍilya!

Fifteenth Khaṇḍa

The universe as a treasure-chest and refuge

  • 1. The chest whose space is atmosphere,
  • With earth for bottom, ne’er decays.
  • Its corners are the poles of heaven.
  • Its upper opening is the sky.
  • This chest is one containing wealth.
  • Within it everything here rests.

2. Its eastern quarter is named Sacrificial Ladle (juhū).1 Its southern quarter is named Over-powering.2 Its western quarter is named Queen (rājñī).3 Its northern quarter is named Wealthy.4 The wind is the child of these quarters of heaven. He who knows this wind thus as the child of the quarters of heaven mourns not for a son.

‘I here know this wind thus as the child of the quarters of heaven. Let me not mourn for a son.’

3. ‘I take refuge in the imperishable chest with this one, with this one, with this one.’5

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‘I take refuge in breath (prāṇa)1 with this one, with this one, with this one.’

‘I take refuge in bhūr with this one, with this one, with this one.’

‘I take refuge in bhuvas with this one, with this one, with this one.’

‘I take refuge in svar with this one, with this one, with this one.’

4. When I said, ‘I take refuge in breath’—breath, verily, is everything here that has come to be, whatsoever there is. So it was in this I took refuge.

5. So when I said, ‘I take refuge in bhūr,’ what I said was: ‘I take refuge in earth; I take refuge in atmosphere; I take refuge in sky.’

6. So when I said, ‘I take refuge in bhuvas,’ what I said was: ‘I take refuge in Agni (Fire); I take refuge in Vāyu (Wind); I take refuge in Āditya (Sun).’

7. So when I said, ‘I take refuge in svar,’ what I said was: ‘I take refuge in the Rig-Veda; I take refuge in the Yajur-Veda; I take refuge in the Sāma-Veda.’ That was what I said.

Sixteenth Khaṇḍa

A person’s entire life symbolically a Soma-sacrifice

1. Verily, a person is a sacrifice. His [first] twenty-four years are the morning Soma-libation, for the Gāyatrī meter has twenty-four syllables and the morning Soma-libation is offered with a Gāyatrī hymn. The Vasus are connected with this part of the sacrifice. Verily, the vital breaths (prāṇa) are the Vasus, for they cause everything here to continue (√vas).

2. If any sickness should overtake him in this period of life, let him say: ‘Ye vital breaths, ye Vasus, let this morning libation of mine continue over to the mid-day libation. Let not me, the sacrifice, be broken off in the midst of the vital breaths, of the Vasus.’ He arises from it; he becomes free from sickness.

3. Now the [next] forty-four years are the mid-day libation, Edition: current; Page: [212] for the Trishṭubh meter has forty-four syllables and the mid-day libation is offered with a Trishṭubh hymn. The Rudras are connected with this part of the sacrifice. Verily, the vital breaths are the Rudras, for [on departing] they cause everything here to lament (√rud).1

4. If any sickness should overtake him in this period of life, let him say: ‘Ye vital breaths, ye Rudras, let this mid-day libation of mine continue over to the third libation. Let not me, the sacrifice, be broken off in the midst of the vital breaths, of the Rudras.’ He arises from it; he becomes free from sickness.

5. Now, the [next] forty-eight years are the third libation, for the Jagatī meter has forty-eight syllables and the third libation is offered with a Jagatī hymn. The Ādityas are connected with this part of the sacrifice. Verily, the vital breaths are the Ādityas, for [on departing] they take everything to themselves (ādadate).

6. If any sickness should overtake him in this period of life, let him say: ‘Ye vital breaths, ye Ādityas, let this third libation of mine continue to a full length of life. Let not me, the sacrifice, be broken off in the midst of the vital breaths, of the Ādityas.’ He arises from it; he becomes free from sickness.

7. Verily, it was this that Mahidāsa Aitareya knew when he used to say: ‘Here, why do you afflict me with this sickness—me, who am not going to die with it?’ He lived a hundred and sixteen years. He lives to a hundred and sixteen years who knows this.2

Seventeenth Khaṇḍa

1. When one hungers and thirsts and does not enjoy himself—that is a Preparatory Consecration Ceremony (dīkṣā).

2. When one eats and drinks and enjoys himself—then he joins in the Upasada ceremonies.3

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3. When one laughs and eats and practises sexual intercourse—then he joins in the Chant and Recitation (stuta-śastra).

4. Austerity, alms-giving, uprightness, harmlessness, truthfulness—these are one’s gifts for the priests.

5. Therefore they say: ‘He will procreate (soṣyati)! He has procreated (asoṣṭa)!’1—that is his rebirth (punar-utpādana). Death is an ablution after the ceremony.

6. When Ghora Āṅgirasa explained this to Kṛishṇa, the son of Devakī, he also explained—for he had become free from desire—‘In the final hour one should take refuge in these three thoughts: “You are the Indestructible; you are the Unshaken; you are the very essence of life (prāṇa).” ’ On this point there are these two Rig verses:—

    • 7. Proceeding from primeval seed,
    • [The early morning light they see,
    • That gleameth higher than the heaven].2
    • From out of darkness all around,
    • We, gazing on the higher light—
    • Yea, gazing on the higher light—
    • To Sūrya, god among the gods,
    • We have attained—the highest light!
    • —yea, the highest light!3

Eighteenth Khaṇḍa

The fourfold Brahma in the individual and in the world

1. One should reverence the mind as Brahma.—Thus with reference to the self.

Now with reference to the divinities.—One should reverence space as Brahma.

—This is the twofold instruction with reference to the self and with reference to the divinities.

2. That Brahma has four quarters.4 One quarter is speech. Edition: current; Page: [214] One quarter is breath. One quarter is the eye. One quarter is the ear.—Thus with reference to the self.

Now with reference to the divinities.—One quarter is Agni (Fire). One quarter is Vāyu (Wind). One quarter is Āditya (the Sun). One quarter is the quarters of heaven.

—This is the twofold instruction with reference to the self and with reference to the divinities.

3. Speech, truly, is a fourth part of Brahma. It shines and glows with Agni as its light. He shines and glows with fame, with splendor, and with eminence in sacred knowledge who knows this.

4. Breath, truly, is a fourth part of Brahma. It shines and glows with Vāyu as its light. He shines and glows with fame, with splendor, and with eminence in sacred knowledge who knows this.

5. The eye, truly, is a fourth part of Brahma. It shines and glows with Āditya as its light. He shines and glows with fame, with splendor, and with eminence in sacred knowledge who knows this.

6. The ear, truly, is a fourth part of Brahma. It shines and glows with the quarters of heaven as its light. He shines and glows with fame, with splendor, and with eminence in sacred knowledge who knows this—yea, who knows this!

Nineteenth Khaṇḍa

The cosmic egg

1. The sun is Brahma—this is the teaching. A further explanation thereof [is as follows].

In the beginning this world was merely non-being. It was existent. It developed. It turned into an egg. It lay for the period of a year. It was split asunder. One of the two eggshell-parts became silver, one gold.

2. That which was of silver is this earth. That which was of gold is the sky. What was the outer membrane is the mountains. What was the inner membrane is cloud and mist. What were the veins are the rivers. What was the fluid within is the ocean.

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3. Now, what was born therefrom is yonder sun. When it was born, shouts and hurrahs, all beings and all desires rose up toward it. Therefore at its rising and at its every return shouts and hurrahs, all beings and all desires rise up toward it.

4. He who, knowing it thus, reverences the sun as Brahma—the prospect is that pleasant shouts will come unto him and delight him—yea, delight him!

FOURTH PRAPĀṬHAKA
Conversational instructions

First Khaṇḍa

The story of Jānaśruti and Raikva: wind and breath as snatchers-unto-themselves

1. Om! Now there was Jānaśruti, the great-grandson [of Janaśruta], a pious dispenser, a liberal giver, a preparer of much food. He had rest-houses built everywhere with the thought, ‘Everywhere people will be eating of my food.’

2. Now then, one time swans flew past in the night, and one swan spoke to another thus: ‘Hey! Ho! Short-sight! Short-sight! The light of Jānaśruti, the great-grandson [of Janaśruta], has spread like the sky. Do not touch it, lest it burn you up!’

3. To it the other one then replied: ‘Come! Who is that man of whom you speak as if he were Raikva, the man with the cart?’

‘Pray, how is it with Raikva, the man with the cart?’

4. ‘As the lower throws of dice all go to the highest throw, to the winner, so whatever good thing creatures do, all goes to him. I say the same thing of whoever knows what he knows.’

5. Now Jānaśruti, the great-grandson [of Janaśruta], overheard this. Then when he rose he said to the attendant1: ‘Lo! you speak [of me] as if I were Raikva, the man with the cart!’

‘Pray, how is it with Raikva, the man with the cart?’

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6. ‘As the lower throws of dice all go to the highest throw, to the winner, so to this man, whatever good thing creatures do, all goes to him. I say the same thing of whoever knows what he knows.’

7. Then the attendant, having sought, came back, saying, ‘I did not find him.’

Then he said to him: ‘Oh! Where one searches for a Brahman, there seek for him.’

8. He approached a man who was scratching the itch underneath a cart, and said to him: ‘Pray, Sir, are you Raikva, the man with the cart?’

‘Oh! I am, indeed,’ he acknowledged.

Then the attendant went back, and said: ‘I have found him.’

Second Khaṇḍa

1. Then Jānaśruti, the great-grandson [of Janaśruta], took six hundred cows and a gold necklace and a chariot drawn by a she-mule, and went back to him.

He said to him: [2] ‘Raikva, here are six hundred cows, and here is a gold necklace, and here is a chariot drawn by a she-mule. Now, Sir, teach me that divinity—the divinity which you reverence.’

3. And to him then the other replied: ‘Oh! Necklace and carriage along with the cows be yours, O Śūdra!’

And then again Jānaśruti, the great-grandson [of Janaśruta], taking a thousand cows and a gold necklace and a chariot drawn by a she-mule, and his daughter too, went unto him.

4. Then he spoke unto him: ‘Raikva, here are a thousand cows, and here is a gold necklace, and here is a chariot drawn by a she-mule, and here is a wife, and here is the village in which you dwell. Pray, Sir, do you teach me.’

5. Then, lifting up her face toward himself, he [i. e. Raikva] said: ‘He has brought these [cows] along!—Śūdra, merely with this face you would cause me to speak.’

—So those are called the Raikvaparṇa [villages], among the people of the Mahāvṛishas, where at his offer1 he lived.

Then he said to him:—

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Third Khaṇḍa

1. ‘The Wind (Vāyu), verily, is a snatcher-unto-itself. Verily, when a fire blows out, it just goes to the Wind. When the sun sets, it just goes to the Wind. When the moon sets, it just goes to the Wind.

2. When water dries, goes up, it just goes to the Wind. For the Wind, truly, snatches all here to itself.—Thus with reference to the divinities.

3. Now with reference to oneself.—

Breath (prāṇa), verily, is a snatcher-unto-itself. When one sleeps, speech just goes to breath; the eye, to breath; the ear, to breath; the mind, to breath; for the breath, truly, snatches all here to itself.

4. Verily, these are two snatchers-unto-themselves: the Wind among the gods, breath among the vital breaths.

5. Now, once upon a time when Śaunaka Kāpeya and Abhipratārin Kākshaseni were being served with food, a student of sacred knowledge begged of them. They did not give to him.

6. Then he said:—

  • “One God (deva) has swallowed up four mighty beings (mahātman).
  • Who is that world’s protector, O Kāpeya?
  • Him mortal men perceive not, though abiding
  • In manifolded forms, Abhipratārin.

Verily, this food has not been offered to whom it belongs.”

7. Then Śaunaka Kāpeya, considering this, replied:—

  • “The Self (ātman) of gods, of creatures Procreator,
  • With golden teeth Devourer, truly Wise One—
  • His mightiness they say is truly mighty;
  • He eats what is not food, and is not eaten.

Thus, verily, O student of sacred knowledge, do we reverence It.—Give ye him alms.”

8. Then they gave to him.

These five1 and the other five2 make ten, and that is the Edition: current; Page: [218] highest throw in dice. Therefore in all regions ten, the highest throw, is food. That is Virāj1 and an eater of food. Through it this whole world came to light. This whole world comes to light for him, he becomes an eater of food, who knows this—yea, who knows this.’

Fourth Khaṇḍa

Satyakāma instructed concerning four quarters of Brahma

1. Once upon a time Satyakāma Jābāla addressed his mother Jabālā: ‘Madam! I desire to live the life of a student of sacred knowledge. Of what family, pray, am I?’

2. Then she said to him: ‘I do not know this, my dear—of what family you are. In my youth, when I went about a great deal serving as a maid, I got you. So I do not know of what family you are. However, I am Jabālā by name; you are Satyakāma by name. So you may speak of yourself as Satyakāma Jābāla.’

3. Then he went to Hāridrumata Gautama, and said: ‘I will live the life of a student of sacred knowledge. I will become a pupil of yours, Sir.’

4. To him he then said: ‘Of what family, pray, are you, my dear?’

Then he said: ‘I do not know this, Sir, of what family I am. I asked my mother. She answered me: “In my youth, when I went about a great deal serving as a maid, I got you. So I do not know this, of what family you are. However, I am Jabālā by name; you are Satyakāma by name.” So I am Satyakāma Jābāla, Sir.’

5. To him he then said: ‘A non-Brahman (a-brāhmaṇa) would not be able to explain thus. Bring the fuel, my dear. I will receive you as a pupil. You have not deviated from the truth.’

After having received him as a pupil, he separated out four hundred lean, weak cows and said: ‘Follow these, my dear.’

As he was driving them on, he said: ‘I may not return without a thousand.’ So he lived away a number of years. When they came to be a thousand,

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Fifth Khaṇḍa

[1] then the bull spoke to him, saying: ‘Satyakāma!’

‘Sir!’ he replied.

‘We have reached a thousand, my dear. Bring us to the teacher’s house. [2] And let me tell you a quarter of Brahma.’

‘Tell me, Sir.’

To him it then said: ‘One sixteenth is the east. One sixteenth is the west. One sixteenth is the south. One sixteenth is the north. This, verily, my dear, is the quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, named the Shining.

3. He who, knowing it thus, reverences a quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, as the Shining, becomes shining in this world. Then he wins shining worlds who, knowing it thus, reverences a quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, as the Shining.

Sixth Khaṇḍa

1. Fire will tell you a quarter.’

He then, when it was the morrow, drove the cows on. Where they came at evening, there he built a fire, penned in the cows, laid on fuel, and sat down to the west of the fire, facing the east.

2. The fire spoke to him, saying: ‘Satyakāma!’

‘Sir!’ he replied.

3. ‘Let me tell you, my dear, a quarter of Brahma.’

‘Tell me, Sir.’

To him it then said: ‘One sixteenth is the earth. One sixteenth is the atmosphere. One sixteenth is the sky. One sixteenth is the ocean. This, verily, my dear, is the quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, named the Endless.

4. He who, knowing it thus, reverences a quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, as the Endless, becomes endless in this world. Then he wins endless worlds who, knowing it thus, reverences a quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, as the Endless.

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Seventh Khaṇḍa

1. A swan will tell you a quarter.’

He then, when it was the morrow, drove the cows on. Where they came at evening, there he built a fire, penned in the cows, laid on the fuel, and sat down to the west of the fire, facing the east.

2. A swan flew down to him, and spoke to him, saying: ‘Satyakāma!’

‘Sir!’ he replied.

3. ‘Let me tell you, my dear, a quarter of Brahma.’

‘Tell me, Sir.’

To him it then said: ‘One sixteenth is fire. One sixteenth is the sun. One sixteenth is the moon. One sixteenth is lightning.

This, verily, my dear, is the quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, named the Luminous.

4. He who, knowing it thus, reverences a quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, as the Luminous, becomes luminous in this world. Then he wins luminous worlds who, knowing it thus, reverences a quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, as the Luminous.

Eighth Khaṇḍa

1. A diver-bird will tell you a quarter.’

He then, when it was the morrow, drove the cows on. Where they came at evening, there he built a fire, penned in the cows, laid on fuel, and sat down to the west of the fire, facing the east.

2. A diver-bird flew down to him, and spoke to him, saying: ‘Satyakāma!’

‘Sir!’ he replied.

3. ‘Let me tell you, my dear, a quarter of Brahma.’

‘Tell me, Sir.’

To him it then said: ‘One sixteenth is breath. One sixteenth is the eye. One sixteenth is the ear. One sixteenth is mind. This, verily, my dear, is the quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, named Possessing-a-support.

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4. He who, knowing it thus, reverences a quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, as Possessing-a-support, comes to possess a support in this world. Then he wins worlds possessing a support who, knowing it thus, reverences a quarter of Brahma, consisting of four sixteenths, as Possessing-a-support.’

Ninth Khaṇḍa

1. Then he reached the teacher’s house. The teacher spoke to him, saying: ‘Satyakāma!’

‘Sir!’ he replied.

2. ‘Verily, my dear, you shine like a Brahma-knower. Who, pray, has instructed you?’

‘Others than men,’ he acknowledged. ‘But do you yourself please speak to me; [3] for I have heard from those who are like you, Sir, that the knowledge which has been learned from a teacher best helps one to attain his end.’

To him he then declared it. In it then nothing whatsoever was omitted—yea, nothing was omitted.

Tenth Khaṇḍa

Brahma as life, joy, and the void

1. Now, verily, Upakosala Kāmalāyana dwelt with Satyakāma Jābāla as a student of sacred knowledge. For twelve years he tended his fires. Then, although accustomed to allow other pupils to return home, him he did not allow to return.

2. His wife said to him: ‘The student of sacred knowledge has performed his penance. He has tended the fires well. Let not the fires anticipate you in teaching him. Teach him yourself.’

But he went off on a journey without having told him.

3. Then, on account of sickness, he [i. e. Upakosala] took to not eating.

The teacher’s wife said to him: ‘Student of sacred knowledge. eat. Why, pray, do you not eat?’

Then he said: ‘Many and various are the desires here in this man. I am filled up with sicknesses. I will not eat.’

4. So then the fires said among themselves: ‘The student of Edition: current; Page: [222] sacred knowledge has performed his penance. He has tended us well. Come! Let us teach him.’

Then they said to him: [5] ‘Brahma is life (prāṇa). Brahma is joy. Brahma is the void.’

Then he said: ‘I understand that Brahma is life. But joy and void I do not understand.’

They said: ‘Joy (ka)—verily, that is the same as the Void (kha). The Void—verily, that is the same as Joy.’ And then they explained to him life and space.

Eleventh Khaṇḍa

The same person in the sun, the moon, and lightning as in fire and other objects

1. So then the householder’s (Gārhapatya) fire instructed him: ‘Earth, fire, food, sun [are forms of me. But] the Person who is seen in the sun—I am he; I am he indeed!’

2. [Chorus of the fires:] ‘He who knows and reverences this fire thus, repels evil-doing from himself, becomes possessor of a world, reaches a full length of life, lives long. His descendants do not become destroyed. Both in this world and in the yonder we serve him who knows and reverences this fire thus.’

Twelfth Khaṇḍa

1. So then the southern sacrificial (Anvāhāryapacana) fire instructed him: ‘Water, the quarters of heaven, the stars, the moon [are forms of me. But] the Person who is seen in the moon—I am he; I am he indeed!’

2. [Chorus of the fires:] ‘He who knows and reverences this fire thus, repels evil-doing from himself, becomes possessor of a world, reaches a full length of life, lives long. His descendants do not become destroyed. Both in this world and in the yonder we serve him who knows and reverences this fire thus.’

Thirteenth Khaṇḍa

1. So then the eastern (Āhavanīya) fire instructed him: ‘Breath, space, sky, lightning [are forms of me. But] the Person who is seen in the lightning—I am he; I am he indeed!’

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2. [Chorus of the fires:] ‘He who knows and reverences this fire thus, repels evil-doing from himself, becomes possessor of a world, reaches a full length of life, lives long. His descendants do not become destroyed. Both in this world and in the yonder we serve him who knows and reverences this fire thus.’

Fourteenth Khaṇḍa

The soul, and its way to Brahma

1. Then the fires said: ‘Upakosala dear, you have this knowledge of ourselves and the knowledge of the Soul (Ātman). But the teacher will tell you the way.’

Then the teacher returned. The teacher spoke to him, saying: ‘Upakosala!’

2. ‘Sir!’ he then replied.

‘Your face, my dear, shines like a Brahma-knower’s. Who, pray, has instructed you?’

‘Who, pray, would instruct me, Sir?’—Here he denied it as it were.—‘These! They are of this appearance now, but they were of a different appearance!’—Here he alluded to the fires.—

‘What, pray, my dear, did they indeed tell you?’

3. ‘This—’ he acknowledged.

‘Verily, my dear, they did indeed tell you the worlds. But I will tell you something. As water adheres not to the leaf of a lotus-flower, so evil action adheres not to him who knows this.’

‘Tell me, Sir.’

To him he then said:—

Fifteenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘That Person who is seen in the eye—He is the Self (Ātman),’ said he. ‘That is the immortal, the fearless. That is Brahma. So even if they pour clarified butter or water on that, it goes away to the edges.

2. They call this “Loveliness-uniter” (saṁyadvāma), for all lovely things (vāma) come together (saṁyanti) unto it. All lovely things come together unto him who knows this.

3. And this is also “Goods-bringer” (vāmanī), for it brings Edition: current; Page: [224] (√nī) all goods (vāma). He brings all goods who knows this.

4. And this one is also “Light-bringer” (bhāmanī), for it shines (√bhā) in all worlds. He shines in all worlds who knows this.

5. Now, whether they perform the cremation obsequies in the case of such a person or not, they [i. e. the dead] pass over into a flame; from a flame, into the day; from the day, into the half-month of the waxing moon; from the half-month of the waxing moon, into the six months during which the sun moves northwards; from the months, into the year; from the year, into the sun; from the sun, into the moon; from the moon, into lightning. There there is a Person (puruṣa) who is non-human (a-mānava).

6. He leads them on to Brahma. This is the way to the gods,1 the way to Brahma. They who proceed by it return not to the human condition here—yea, they return not!’

Sixteenth Khaṇḍa

The Brahman priest properly silent at the sacrifice

1. Verily, he who purifies here2 is a sacrifice. Truly, when he moves, he purifies this whole world. Since when he moves (yan) he purifies this whole world, therefore indeed he is a sacrifice (yajña).

His two paths are mind and speech.

2. Of these the Brahman priest (brahmā) forms one with his mind; the Hotṛi, the Adhvaryu, and the Udgātṛi priests, the other with speech.

In case, after the morning litany has commenced, the Brahman priest interrupts before the concluding verse, [3] he forms only one path. The other becomes discontinued.

As a one-legged man walking, or a chariot proceeding with one wheel, suffers injury, so his sacrifice suffers injury. The institutor of the sacrifice suffers injury after the sacrifice which suffers injury. He becomes worse off by having sacrificed.

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4. But in case, after the morning litany has commenced, the Brahman priest does not interrupt before the concluding verse, they form both paths; the other does not become discontinued.

5. As a two-legged man walking, or a chariot proceeding with both wheels, is well supported, so his sacrifice is well supported. The institutor of the sacrifice is well supported after the sacrifice which is well supported. He becomes better off by having sacrificed.

Seventeenth Khaṇḍa

How the Brahman priest rectifies mistakes in the sacrificial ritual

1. Prajāpati brooded upon the worlds. As they were being brooded upon, he extracted their essences: fire from the earth, wind from the atmosphere, the sun from the sky.

2. Upon these three deities he brooded. As they were being brooded upon, he extracted their essences: from the fire, the Rig verses; from the wind, the Yajus formulas; the Sāman chants, from the sun.

3. Upon this threefold knowledge he brooded. As it was being brooded upon, he extracted its essences: bhūr from the Rig verses, bhuvas from the Yajus formulas, svar from the Sāman chants.

4. So if there should come an injury in connection with the Rig verses, one should make an oblation in the householder’s (Gārhapatya) fire with the words ‘bhūr! Hail!’ So by the essence of the Rig verses themselves, by the power of the Rig verses he mends the injury to the Rig verses of the sacrifice.

5. Moreover, if there should come an injury in connection with the Yajus formulas, one should make an oblation in the southern (Dakshiṇa) fire with the words ‘bhuvas! Hail!’ So by the essence of the Yajus formulas themselves, by the power of the Yajus formulas he mends the injury to the Yajus formulas of the sacrifice.

6. Moreover, if there should come an injury in connection with the Sāman chants, one should make an oblation in the eastern (Āhavanīya) fire with the words ‘svar! Hail!’ So by Edition: current; Page: [226] the essence of the Sāman chants, by the power of the Sāman chants he mends the injury to the Sāman chants of the sacrifice.

7. So, as one would mend gold with borax-salt, silver with gold, tin with silver, lead with tin, iron with lead, wood with iron or with leather, [8] even so with the power of those worlds, of those divinities, of that triple knowledge one mends the injury to the sacrifice. Verily, that sacrifice is healed in which there is a Brahman priest who knows this.

9. Verily, that sacrifice is inclined to the north1 in which there is a Brahman priest who knows this. Verily, there is this song on the Brahman priest who knows this:—

  • Whichever way he2 turns himself,
  • In that same way goes [10] common man.
  • The Brahman priest alone protects
  • The sacrificers3 like a dog.4

Verily, the Brahman priest who knows this guards the sacrifice, the institutor of the sacrifice, and all the priests. Therefore one should make as his Brahman priest one who knows this, not one who does not know this—yea, not one who does not know this.

FIFTH PRAPĀṬHAKA
Concerning breath, the soul, and the Universal Soul

First Khaṇḍa

The rivalry of the five bodily functions, and the superiority of breath

1. Om! Verily, he who knows the chiefest and best, becomes the chiefest and best. Breath, verily, is the chiefest and best.

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2. Verily, he who knows the most excellent, becomes the most excellent of his own [people]. Speech, verily, is the most excellent.

3. Verily, he who knows the firm basis, has a firm basis both in this world and in the yonder. The eye, verily, is a firm basis.

4. Verily, he who knows attainment—for him wishes are attained, both human and divine. The ear, verily, is attainment.

5. Verily, he who knows the abode, becomes an abode of his own [people]. The mind, verily, is the abode.

6. Now, the Vital Breaths (prāṇa)1 disputed among themselves on self-superiority, saying [in turn]: ‘I am superior!’ ‘I am superior!’

7. Those Vital Breaths went to Father Prajāpati, and said: ‘Sir! Which of us is the most superior?’

He said to them: ‘That one of you after whose going off the body appears as if it were the very worst off—he is the most superior of you.’

8. Speech went off. Having remained away a year, it came around again, and said: ‘How have you been able to live without me?’

‘As the dumb, not speaking, but breathing with the breath, seeing with the eye, hearing with the ear, thinking with the mind. Thus.’

Speech entered in.

9. The Eye went off. Having remained away a year, it came around again, and said: ‘How have you been able to live without me?’

‘As the blind, not seeing, but breathing with the breath, speaking with speech, hearing with the ear, thinking with the mind. Thus.’

The Eye entered in.

10. The Ear went off. Having remained away a year, it came around again, and said: ‘How have you been able to live without me?’

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‘As the deaf, not hearing, but breathing with the breath, speaking with speech, seeing with the eye, thinking with the mind. Thus.’

The Ear entered in.

11. The Mind went off. Having remained away a year, it came around again, and said: ‘How have you been able to live without me?’

‘As simpletons, mindless, but breathing with the breath, speaking with speech, seeing with the eye, hearing with the ear. Thus.’

The Mind entered in.

12. Now when the Breath was about to go off—as a fine horse might tear out the pegs of his foot-tethers all together, thus did it tear out the other Breaths all together. They all came to it, and said: ‘Sir! Remain. You are the most superior of us. Do not go off.’

13. Then Speech said unto that one: ‘If I am the most excellent, so are you the most excellent.’

Then the Eye said unto that one: ‘If I am a firm basis, so are you a firm basis.’

14. Then the Ear said unto that one: ‘If I am attainment, so are you attainment.’

Then the Mind said unto that one: ‘If I am an abode, so are you an abode.’

15. Verily, they do not call them ‘Speeches,’ nor ‘Eyes,’ nor ‘Ears,’ nor ‘Minds.’ They call them ‘Breaths’ (prāṇa), for the vital breath is all these.

Second Khaṇḍa

1. It said: ‘What will be my food?’

‘Whatever there is here, even to dogs and birds,’ they said.

So this, verily, is the food (anna) of breath (ana). Verily, breath is its evident name. Verily, in the case of one who knows this, there is nothing whatever that is not food.

2. It said: ‘What will be my garment?’

‘Water,’ they said.

Therefore, verily, when people are about to eat, they enswathe it [i.e. the breath] with water both before and Edition: current; Page: [229] after.1 It is accustomed to receive a garment; it becomes not naked.

3. When Satyakāma Jābāla told this to Gośruti Vaiyāgrapadya, he also said: ‘Even if one should tell this to a dried-up stump, branches would be produced on it and leaves would spring forth.’

The ‘mixed potion’ incantation for the attainment of greatness

4. Now, if one should wish to come to something great, let him on the night of a new moon perform the Preparatory Consecration Ceremony (Dīkshā), and on the night of the full moon mix a mixed potion of all sorts of herbs with sour milk and honey.

‘Hail to the chiefest and best!’—with these words he should offer a libation of melted butter in the fire and pour the residue into the potion.

5. ‘Hail to the most excellent!’—with these words he should offer a libation of melted butter in the fire and pour the residue into the potion.

‘Hail to the firm basis!’—with these words he should offer a libation of melted butter in the fire and pour the residue into the potion.

‘Hail to the abode!’—with these words he should offer a libation of melted butter in the fire and pour the residue into the potion.

6. Then, creeping back [from the fire], and taking the potion in his hollowed hands, he mutters: ‘Thou art He (ama) by name, for this whole world is at home (amā) in thee, for thou art pre-eminent and supreme (śreṣṭha), king and overlord. Let him bring me to pre-eminence and supremacy (śraiṣṭhya), kingship and overlordship! Let me be all this!’2

7. Verily then with this Rig verse3 he takes a sip at each hemistich:—

‘The food which is god Savitṛi’s,’

—here he takes a sip—

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‘That for ourselves do we prefer,’

—here he takes a sip—

‘The best, the all-refreshing food;’

—here he takes a sip—

‘The Giver’s strength may we attain!’

—here he takes a sip.

8. After having cleansed the drinking-vessel or goblet, he lies down to the west of the fire either on a skin or on the bare ground with voice restrained and self-possessed. If he should see a woman, he may know that the rite is successful.

9. As to this there is the following verse:—

  • If during rites done for a wish
  • One sees a woman in his dream,
  • Success he there may recognize
  • In this appearance of his dream
  • —In this appearance of his dream.

Third Khaṇḍa1

The course of the soul in its reincarnations

1. Śvetaketu Āruṇeya attended an assembly of the Pañcālas. Then Pravāhaṇa Jaibali said to him: ‘Young man, has your father instructed you?’

‘He has indeed, Sir.’

2. ‘Do you know unto what creatures go forth hence?’

‘No, Sir.’

‘Do you know how they return again?’

‘No, Sir.’

‘Do you know the parting of the two ways, one leading to the gods, and one leading to the fathers?’

‘No, Sir.’

3. ‘Do you know how [it is that] yonder world is not filled up?’

‘No, Sir.’

‘Do you know how in the fifth oblation water comes to have a human voice?’

‘No, indeed, Sir.’

4. ‘Now, pray, how did you say of yourself that you had Edition: current; Page: [231] been instructed? Indeed, how could one who would not know these things speak of himself as having been instructed?’

Distressed, he then went to his father’s place. Then he said to him: ‘Verily, indeed, without having instructed me, you, Sir, said: “I have instructed you.”

5. Five questions a fellow of the princely class (rājanyabandhu) has asked me. I was not able to explain even one of them.’

Then he [i.e. the father] said: ‘As you have told them to me here, I do not know even one of them. If I had known them, how would I not have told them to you?’

6. Then Gautama1 went to the king’s place. To him, when he arrived, he [i.e. the king] had proper attention shown. Then on the morrow he went up to the audience-hall. Then he [i.e. the king] said to him: ‘Honored Gautama, you may choose for yourself a boon of human wealth.’

Then he said: ‘Human wealth be yours, O king! The word which you said in the presence of the young man, even that do you speak to me.’

Then he became troubled.

7. ‘Wait a while,’ he commanded him. Then he said: ‘As to what you have told me, O Gautama, this knowledge has never yet come to Brahmans before you; and therefore in all the worlds has the rule belonged to the Kshatriya only.’ Then he said to him:—

Fourth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Yonder world, verily, O Gautama, is a sacrificial fire. In this case the sun is the fuel; the light-rays, the smoke; the day, the flame; the moon, the coals; the stars, the sparks.

2. In this fire the gods offer faith (śraddhā). From this oblation arises King Soma.

Fifth Khaṇḍa

1. The rain-cloud, verily, O Gautama, is a sacrificial fire. In this case wind is the fuel; mist, the smoke; lightning, the flame; the thunderbolt, the coals; hailstones, the sparks.

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2. In this fire the gods offer King Soma. From this oblation arises rain.

Sixth Khaṇḍa

1. The earth, verily, O Gautama, is a sacrificial fire. In this case the year is the fuel; space, the smoke; night, the flame; the quarters of heaven, the coals; the intermediate quarters of heaven, the sparks.

2. In this fire the gods offer rain. From this oblation arises food.

Seventh Khaṇḍa

1. Man, verily, O Gautama, is a sacrificial fire. In this case speech is the fuel; breath, the smoke; the tongue, the flame; the eyes, the coals; the ear, the sparks.

2. In this fire the gods offer food. From this oblation arises semen.

Eighth Khaṇḍa

1. Woman, verily, O Gautama, is a sacrificial fire. In this case the sexual organ is the fuel; when one invites, the smoke; the vulva, the flame; when one inserts, the coals; the sexual pleasure, the sparks.

2. In this fire the gods offer semen. From this oblation arises the fetus.

Ninth Khaṇḍa

1. Thus indeed in the fifth oblation water comes to have a human voice.

After he has lain within for ten months, or for however long it is, as a fetus covered with membrane, then he is born.

2. When born, he lives for as long as is his length of life. When deceased, they carry him hence to the appointed place for the fire from whence indeed he came, from whence he arose.

Tenth Khaṇḍa

1. So those who know this, and those too who worship in a forest with the thought that “Faith is austerity,” pass into the flame1; from the flame, into the day; from the day, into the half-month of the waxing moon; from the half-month of the waxing moon, into the six months during which the sun moves Edition: current; Page: [233] northward; [2] from those months, into the year; from the year, into the sun; from the sun, into the moon; from the moon, into the lightning. There there is a Person (purusa) who is non-human (a-mānava). He leads them on to Brahma. This is the way leading to the gods.1

3. But those who in the village reverence a belief in sacrifice, merit, and almsgiving—they pass into the smoke2; from the smoke, into the night; from the night, into the latter half of the month; from the latter half of the month, into the six months during which the sun moves southward—these do not reach the year; [4] from those months, into the world of the fathers; from the world of the fathers, into space; from space, into the moon. That is King Soma. That is the food of the gods. The gods eat that.

5. After having remained in it as long as there is a residue [of their good works], then by that course by which they came they return again, just as they came, into space; from space, into wind. After having become wind, one becomes smoke. After having become smoke, he becomes mist.

6. After having become mist, he becomes cloud. After having become cloud, he rains down. They are born here as rice and barley, as herbs and trees, as sesame plants and beans. Thence, verily, indeed, it is difficult to emerge; for only if some one or other eats him as food and emits him as semen, does he develop further.

7. Accordingly, those who are of pleasant conduct here—the prospect is, indeed, that they will enter a pleasant womb, either the womb of a Brahman, or the womb of a Kshatriya, or the womb of a Vaiśya. But those who are of stinking conduct here—the prospect is, indeed, that they will enter a stinking womb, either the womb of a dog, or the womb of a swine, or the womb of an outcast (caṇḍāla).

8. But on neither of these ways are the small, continually returning creatures,3 [those of whom it is said:] “Be born, and die”—theirs is a third state.

Thereby [it comes about that] yonder world is not filled up.

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Therefore one should seek to guard himself. As to this there is the following verse:—

  • 9. The plunderer of gold, the liquor-drinker,
  • The invader of a teacher’s bed, the Brahman-killer—
  • These four sink downward in the scale,
  • And, fifth, he who consorts with them.

10. But he who knows these five fires thus, is not stained with evil, even though consorting with those people. ‘He becomes pure, clean, possessor of a pure world, who knows this—yea, he who knows this!’

Eleventh Khaṇḍa1

The Universal Soul

1. Prācīnaśāla Aupamanyava, Satyayajña Paulushi, Indradyumna Bhāllaveya, Jana Śārkarākshya, and Buḍila Āśvatarāśvi—these great householders, greatly learned in sacred lore (śrotriya), having come together, pondered: ‘Who is our Ātman (Soul)? What is Brahma?’

2. Then they agreed among themselves: ‘Verily, Sirs, Uddālaka Āruṇi here studies exactly this Universal (vaiśvānara) Ātman (Soul). Come, let us go unto him.’

Then unto him they went.

3. Then he agreed with himself: ‘These great householders, greatly learned in sacred lore, will question me. I may not be able to answer them everything. Come! Let me direct them to another.’

4. Then he said to them: ‘Verily, Sirs, Aśvapati Kaikeya studies just this Universal Ātman (Soul). Come! Let us go unto him.’

Then unto him they went.

5. Then to them severally, when they arrived, he had proper attentions shown. He was indeed a man who, on rising, could say2:—

  • ‘Within my realm there is no thief,
  • No miser, nor a drinking man,
  • None altarless, none ignorant,
  • No man unchaste, no wife unchaste.’
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‘Verily, Sirs, I am about to have a sacrifice performed. As large a gift as I shall give to each priest, so large a gift will I give to you, Sirs. Remain, my Sirs.’

6. Then they said: ‘With whatever subject a person is concerned, of that indeed he should speak. You know just this Universal Ātman (Soul). Him indeed do you tell to us.’

7. Then he said to them: ‘On the morrow will I make reply.’ Then with fuel in their hands1 in the morning they returned. Then, without having first received them as pupils, he spoke to them as follows:—

Twelfth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Aupamanyava, whom do you reverence as the Ātman (Soul)?’

‘The heaven indeed, Sir, O King, said he.

‘The Universal Ātman (Soul) is, verily, that brightly shining one (sutejas) which you reverence as the Ātman (Soul). Therefore Soma is seen pressed out (suta) and continually pressed out in your family.

2. You eat food; you see what is pleasing. He eats food; he sees what is pleasing. There is eminence in sacred knowledge in the family of him who reverences the Universal Ātman (Soul) thus. That, however, is only the head of the Ātman (Soul),’ said he. ‘Your head would have fallen off, if you had not come unto me.’

Thirteenth Khaṇḍa

1. Then he said to Satyayajña Paulushi: ‘Prācīnayogya! Whom do you reverence as the Ātman (Soul)?’

‘The sun indeed, Sir, O King,’ said he.

‘The Universal Ātman (Soul) is, verily, that manifold one which you reverence as the Ātman (Soul). Therefore much of all sorts is seen in your family, [2] [e.g.] a chariot drawn by a she-mule rolled up [before your door], a female slave, a gold necklace. You eat food; you see what is pleasing. He eats food; he sees what is pleasing. There is eminence in sacred knowledge in the family of him who reverences that Universal Edition: current; Page: [236] Ātman (Soul) thus. That, however, is only the eye of the Ātman (Soul),’ said he. ‘You would have become blind, if you had not come unto me.’

Fourteenth Khaṇḍa

1. Then he said to Indradyumna Bhāllaveya: ‘Vaiyāghrapadya! Whom do you reverence as the Ātman (Soul)?’

‘The wind indeed, Sir, O King,’ said he.

‘The Universal Ātman (Soul) is, verily, that which possesses various paths, which you reverence as the Ātman (Soul). Therefore offerings come unto you in various ways; rows of chariots follow you in various ways.

2. You eat food; you see what is pleasing. He eats food; he sees what is pleasing. There is eminence in sacred knowledge in the family of him who reverences that Universal Ātman (Soul) thus.

That, however, is only the breath of the Ātman (Soul),’ said he. ‘Your breath would have departed, if you had not come unto me.’

Fifteenth Khaṇḍa

1. Then he said to Jana: ‘Śārkarākshya! Whom do you reverence as the Ātman (Soul)?’

‘Space indeed, Sir, O King,’ said he.

‘The Universal Ātman (Soul) is, verily, that expanded one, which you reverence as the Ātman (Soul). Therefore you are expanded with offspring and wealth.

2. You eat food; you see what is pleasing. He eats food; he sees what is pleasing. There is eminence in sacred knowledge in the family of him who reverences that Universal Ātman (Soul) thus.

That, however, is only the body (saṁdelia) of the Ātman (Soul),’ said he. ‘Your body would have fallen to pieces, if you had not come unto me.’

Sixteenth Khaṇḍa

1. Then he said to Buḍila Āśvatarāśvi: ‘Vaiyāghrapadya! Whom do you reverence as the Ātman (Soul)?’

‘Water indeed, Sir, O King,’ said he.

‘The Universal Ātman (Soul) is, verily, that wealth, which Edition: current; Page: [237] you reverence as the Ātman (Soul). Therefore you are wealthy and thriving.

2. You eat food; you see what is pleasing. He eats food; he sees what is pleasing. There is eminence in sacred knowledge in the family of him who reverences that Universal Ātman (Soul) thus.

That, however, is only the bladder of the Ātman (Soul),’ said he. ‘Your bladder would have burst, if you had not come unto me.’

Seventeenth Khaṇḍa

1. Then he said to Uddālaka Āruṇi: ‘Gautama! Whom do you reverence as the Ātman (Soul)?’

‘The earth indeed, Sir, O King,’ said he.

‘The Universal Ātman (Soul) is, verily, that support, which you reverence as the Ātman (Soul). Therefore you are supported with offspring and cattle.

2. You eat food; you see what is pleasing. He eats food; he sees what is pleasing. There is eminence in sacred knowledge in the family of him who reverences that Universal Ātman (Soul) thus.

That, however, is only the feet of the Ātman (Soul),’ said he. ‘Your feet would have withered away, if you had not come unto me.’

Eighteenth Khaṇḍa

1. Then he said to them: ‘Verily, indeed, you here eat food, knowing this Universal Ātman (Soul) as if something separate. He, however, who reverences this Universal Ātman (Soul) that is of the measure of the span1—thus,2 [yet] is to be measured by thinking of oneself3—he eats food in all worlds, in all beings, in all selves.

2. The brightly shining [heaven] is indeed the head of that Universal Ātman (Soul). The manifold [sun] is his eye. That which possesses various paths [i. e. the wind] is his breath. The extended [space] is his body. Wealth [i. e. Edition: current; Page: [238] water] is indeed his bladder. The support [i. e. the earth] is indeed his feet. The sacrificial area is indeed his breast. The sacrificial grass is his hair. The Gārhapatya fire is his heart. The Anvāhāryapacana fire is his mind. The Āhavanīya fire is his mouth.

Nineteenth Khaṇḍa

The mystical Agnihotra sacrifice to the Universal Soul in one’s own self

1. Therefore the first food which one may come to, should be offered. The first oblation which he would offer he should offer with “Hail to the Prāṇa breath!” The Prāṇa breath is satisfied.

2. The Prāṇa breath being satisfied, the eye is satisfied. The eye being satisfied, the sun is satisfied. The sun being satisfied, the heaven is satisfied. The heaven being satisfied, whatever the heaven and the sun rule over is satisfied. Along with the satisfaction thereof, he is satisfied with offspring, with cattle, with food, with the glow of health, and with eminence in sacred knowledge.

Twentieth Khaṇḍa

1. Then the second oblation which he would offer he should offer with “Hail to the Vyāna breath!” The Vyāna breath is satisfied.

2. The Vyāna breath being satisfied, the ear is satisfied. The ear being satisfied, the moon is satisfied. The moon being satisfied, the quarters of heaven are satisfied. The quarters of heaven being satisfied, whatever the moon and the quarters of heaven rule over is satisfied. Along with the satisfaction thereof, he is satisfied with offspring, with cattle, with food, with the glow of health, and with eminence in sacred knowledge.

Twenty-first Khaṇḍa

1. Then the third offering which he would offer he should offer with “Hail to the Apāna breath!” The Apāna breath is satisfied.

2. The Apāna breath being satisfied, speech is satisfied. Edition: current; Page: [239] Speech being satisfied, fire is satisfied. Fire being satisfied, the earth is satisfied. The earth being satisfied, whatever the earth and fire rule over is satisfied. Along with the satisfaction thereof, he is satisfied with offspring, with cattle, with food, with the glow of health, and with eminence in sacred knowledge.

Twenty-second Khaṇḍa

1. Then the fourth offering which he would offer he should offer with “Hail to the Samāna breath!” The Samāna breath is satisfied.

2. The Samāna breath being satisfied, the mind is satisfied. The mind being satisfied, the rain-god (Parjanya) is satisfied. The rain-god being satisfied, lightning is satisfied. Lightning being satisfied, whatever the rain-god and lightning rule over is satisfied. Along with the satisfaction thereof, he is satisfied with offspring, with cattle, with food, with the glow of health, and with eminence in sacred knowledge.

Twenty-third Khaṇḍa

1. Then the fifth offering which he would offer he should offer with “Hail to the Udāna breath!” The Udāna breath is satisfied.

2. The Udāna breath being satisfied, wind is satisfied.1 Wind being satisfied, space is satisfied. Space being satisfied, whatever wind and space rule over is satisfied. Along with the satisfaction thereof, he is satisfied with offspring, with cattle, with food, with the glow of health, and with eminence in sacred knowledge.

Twenty-fourth Khaṇḍa

1. If one offers the Agnihotra (fire) sacrifice without knowing this—that would be just as if he were to remove the live coals and pour the offering on ashes.

2. But if one offers the Agnihotra sacrifice knowing it thus, his offering is made in all worlds, in all beings, in all selves.

3. So, as a rush-reed laid on a fire would be burned up, even Edition: current; Page: [240] so are burned up all the evils of him who offers the Agnihotra sacrifice knowing it thus.

4. And therefore, if one who knows this should offer the leavings even to an outcast (caṇḍāla), it would be offered in his Universal Ātman (Soul). As to this there is the following verse:—

  • As hungry children sit around
  • About their mother here in life,
  • E’en so all beings sit around
  • The Agnihotra sacrifice.’

SIXTH PRAPĀṬHAKA
The instruction of Śvetaketu by Uddālaka concerning the key to all knowledge

First Khaṇḍa

The threefold development of the elements and of man from the primary unitary Being

1. Om! Now, there was Śvetaketu Āruṇeya. To him his father said: ‘Live the life of a student of sacred knowledge. Verily, my dear, from our family there is no one unlearned [in the Vedas] (an-ucya), a Brahman by connection (brahma-bandhu) as it were.

2. He then, having become a pupil at the age of twelve, having studied all the Vedas, returned at the age of twenty-four, conceited, thinking himself learned, proud.

3. Then his father said to him: ‘Svetaketu, my dear, since now you are conceited, think yourself learned, and are proud, did you also ask for that teaching whereby what has not been heard of becomes heard of, what has not been thought of becomes thought of, what has not been understood becomes understood?’

4. ‘How, pray, Sir, is that teaching?’

(4) ‘Just as, my dear, by one piece of clay everything made of clay may be known—the modification is merely a verbal distinction, a name; the reality is just “clay”—

5. Just as, my dear, by one copper ornament everything Edition: current; Page: [241] made of copper may be known—the modification is merely a verbal distinction, a name; the reality is just “copper”—

6. Just as, my dear, by one nail-scissors everything made of iron may be known—the modification is merely a verbal distinction, a name; the reality is just “iron”—so, my dear, is that teaching.’

7. ‘Verily, those honored men did not know this; for, if they had known it, why would they not have told me? But do you, Sir, tell me it.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

Second Khaṇḍa

1. ‘In the beginning, my dear, this world was just Being (sat), one only, without a second. To be sure, some people say1: “In the beginning this world was just Non-being (a-sat), one only, without a second; from that Non-being Being was produced.”

2. But verily, my dear, whence could this be?’ said he. ‘How from Non-being could Being be produced? On the contrary, my dear, in the beginning this world was just Being, one only, without a second.

3. It bethought itself: “Would that I were many! Let me procreate myself!” It emitted heat. That heat bethought itself: “Would that I were many! Let me procreate myself.” It emitted water. Therefore whenever a person grieves or perspires from the heat, then there is produced water [i.e. either tears or perspiration].

4. That water bethought itself: “Would that I were many! Let me procreate myself.” It emitted food. Therefore whenever it rains, then there is abundant food. So food for eating is produced just from water.

Third Khaṇḍa

1. Now, of these beings here there are just three origins2: [there are beings] born from an egg, born from a living thing, born from a sprout.

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2. That divinity [i.e. Being] bethought itself: “Come! Let me enter these three divinities [i.e. heat, water, and food] with this living Soul (ātman), and separate out name and form.1

3. Let me make each one of them threefold.” That divinity entered into these three divinities with this living Soul, and separated out name and form.

4. It made each of them threefold.

Now, verily, my dear, understand from me how each of these three divinities becomes threefold.

Fourth Khaṇḍa

1. Whatever red form fire has, is the form of heat; whatever white, the form of water; whatever dark, the form of food. The firehood has gone from fire: the modification is merely a verbal distinction, a name. The reality is just “the three forms.”

2. Whatever red form the sun has, is the form of heat; whatever white, the form of water; whatever dark, the form of food. The sunhood has gone from the sun: the modification is merely a verbal distinction, a name. The reality is just “the three forms.”

3. Whatever red form the moon has, is the form of heat; whatever white, the form of water; whatever dark, the form of food. The moonhood has gone from the moon: the modification is merely a verbal distinction, a name. The reality is just “the three forms.”

4. Whatever red form the lightning has, is the form of heat; whatever white, the form of water; whatever dark, the form of food. The lightninghood has gone from the lightning: the modification is merely a verbal distinction, a name. The reality is just “the three forms.”

5. Verily, it was just this that the great householders, greatly learned in sacred lore, knew when they said of old2: “No one now will bring up to us what has not been heard of, what has not been thought of, what has not been understood.” For from these [three forms] they knew [everything].

6. They knew that whatever appeared red was the form of Edition: current; Page: [243] heat. They knew that whatever appeared white was the form of water. They knew that whatever appeared dark was the form of food.

7. They knew that whatever appeared un-understood, is a combination of just these divinities.

Verily, my dear, understand from me how each of these three divinities, upon reaching man, becomes threefold.

Fifth Khaṇḍa

1. Food, when eaten, becomes divided into three parts. That which is its coarsest constituent, becomes the feces; that which is medium, the flesh; that which is finest, the mind.

2. Water, when drunk, becomes divided into three parts. That which is its coarsest constituent, becomes the urine; that which is medium, the blood; that which is finest, the breath (prāṇa).

3. Heat, when eaten, becomes divided into three parts. That which is its coarsest constituent, becomes bone; that which is medium, the marrow; that which is finest, the voice.

4. For, my dear, the mind consists of food; the breath consists of water; the voice consists of heat.’

‘Do you, Sir, cause me to understand even more.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

Sixth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Of coagulated milk, my dear, when churned, that which is the finest essence all moves upward; it becomes butter.

2. Even so, verily, my dear, of food, when eaten, that which is the finest essence all moves upward; it becomes the mind.

3. Of water, my dear, when drunk, that which is the finest essence all moves upward; it becomes the breath.

4. Of heat, my dear, when eaten, that which is the finest essence all moves upward; it becomes the voice.

5. For, my dear, the mind consists of food; the breath consists of water; the voice consists of heat.’

‘Do you, Sir, cause me to understand even more.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

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Seventh Khaṇḍa

1. ‘A person, my dear, consists of sixteen parts. For fifteen days do not eat; drink water at will. Breath, which consists of water, will not be cut off from one who drinks water.’

2. Then for fifteen days he did not eat. So then he approached him, saying, ‘What shall I say, Sir?’

‘The Rig verses, my dear, the Yajus formulas, the Sāman chants.’

Then he said: ‘Verily, they do not come to me, Sir.’

3. To him he then said: ‘Just as, my dear, a single coal of the size of a fire-fly may be left over from a great kindled fire, but with it the fire would not thereafter burn much—so, my dear, of your sixteen parts a single sixteenth part may be left over, but with it you do not now apprehend the Vedas. (4) Eat; [4] then you will understand from me.’

(4) Then he ate. So then he approached him. Then whatsoever he asked him, he answered everything. (5) To him he then said:

5. ‘Just as, my dear, one may, by covering it with straw, make a single coal of the size of a fire-fly that has been left over from a great kindled fire blaze up, and with it the fire would thereafter burn much—[6] so, my dear, of your sixteen parts a single sixteenth part has been left over. After having been covered with food, it has blazed up. With it you now apprehend the Vedas; for, my dear, the mind consists of food, the breath consists of water, the voice consists of heat.’

Then he understood from him—yea, he understood.

Eighth Khaṇḍa

Concerning sleep, hunger and thirst, and dying

1. Then Uddālaka Āruṇi said to Śvetaketu, his son: ‘Understand from me, my dear, the condition of sleep. When a person here sleeps (svapiti), as it is called, then, my dear, he has reached Being, he has gone to his own (svam apīta). Therefore they say of him “he sleeps”; for he has gone to his own.

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2. As a bird fastened with a string, after flying in this direction and in that without finding an abode elsewhere, rests down just upon its fastening—even so, my dear, the mind, after flying in this direction and in that without finding an abode elsewhere, rests down just upon breath; for the mind, my dear, has breath as its fastening.

3. Understand from me, my dear, hunger (aśanā) and thirst. When a person here is hungry (aśiśiṣati), as it is called, just water is leading off (nayanti) that which has been eaten (√aś). So, as they speak of “a leader-of-cows” (go-nāya), “a leader-of-horses” (aśva-nāya), “a leader-of-men” (puruṣa-nāya), so they speak of water as “a leader-of-food” (aśa-nāya, hunger).

On this point, my dear, understand that this [body] is a sprout which has sprung up. It will not be without a root.

4. What else could its root be than food? Even so, my dear, with food for a sprout, look for water as the root. With water, my dear, as a sprout, look for heat as the root. With heat, my dear, as a sprout, look for Being as the root. All creatures here, my dear, have Being as their root, have Being as their home, have Being as their support.

5. Now, when a person here is thirsty, as it is called, just heat is leading off that which has been drunk. So, as they speak of “a leader-of-cows” (go-nāya), “a leader-of-horses” (aśva-nāya), “a leader-of-men” (puruṣa-nāya), so one speaks of heat as “a leader-of-water” (uda-nyā, thirst).

On this point, my dear, understand that this [body] is a sprout which has sprung up. It will not be without a root.

6. Where else could its root be than in water? With water, my dear, as a sprout, look for heat as the root. With heat, my dear, as a sprout, look for Being as the root. All creatures here, my dear, have Being as their root, have Being as their abode, have Being as their support.

But how, verily, my dear, each of these three divinities, upon reaching man, becomes threefold, has previously1 been said.

When a person here is deceasing, my dear, his voice goes into his mind; his mind, into his breath; his breath, into heat; Edition: current; Page: [246] the heat, into the highest divinity. (7) That which is the finest essence—[7] this whole world has that as its soul. That is Reality (satya). That is Ātman (Soul). That art thou, Śvetaketu.’1

‘Do you, Sir, cause me to understand even more.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

Ninth Khaṇḍa

The unitary World-Soul, the immanent reality of all things and of man

1. ‘As the bees, my dear, prepare honey by collecting the essences of different trees and reducing the essence to a unity, [2] as they are not able to discriminate “I am the essence of this tree,” “I am the essence of that tree”—even so, indeed, my dear, all creatures here, though they reach Being,2 know not “We have reached Being.”

3. Whatever they are in this world, whether tiger, or lion, or wolf, or boar, or worm, or fly, or gnat, or mosquito, that they become.

4. That which is the finest essence—this whole world has that as its soul. That is Reality. That is Ātman (Soul). That art thou, Śvetaketu.’

‘Do you, Sir, cause me to understand even more.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

Tenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘These rivers, my dear, flow, the eastern toward the east, the western toward the west. They go just from the ocean to the ocean. They become the ocean itself. As there they know not “I am this one,” “I am that one”—[2] even so, indeed, my dear, all creatures here, though they have come forth from Being, know not “We have come forth from Being.” Whatever they are in this world, whether tiger, or lion, or Edition: current; Page: [247] wolf, or boar, or worm, or fly, or gnat, or mosquito, that they become.

3. That which is the finest essence—this whole world has that as its soul. That is Reality. That is Ātman (Soul). That art thou, Śvetaketu.’

‘Do you, Sir, cause me to understand even more.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

Eleventh Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Of this great tree, my dear, if some one should strike at the root, it would bleed, but still live. If some one should strike at its middle, it would bleed, but still live. If some one should strike at its top, it would bleed, but still live. Being pervaded by Ātman (Soul), it continues to stand, eagerly drinking in moisture and rejoicing.

2. If the life leaves one branch of it, then it dries up. It leaves a second; then that dries up. It leaves a third; then that dries up. It leaves the whole; the whole dries up. Even so, indeed, my dear, understand,’ said he.

3. ‘Verily, indeed, when life has left it, this body dies. The life does not die.

That which is the finest essence—this whole world has that as its soul. That is Reality. That is Ātman (Soul). That art thou, Śvetaketu.’

‘Do you, Sir, cause me to understand even more.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

Twelfth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Bring hither a fig from there.’

‘Here it is, Sir.’

‘Divide it.’

‘It is divided, Sir.’

‘What do you see there?’

‘These rather (iva) fine seeds, Sir.’

‘Of these, please (aṅga), divide one.’

‘It is divided, Sir.’

‘What do you see there?’

‘Nothing at all, Sir.’

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2. Then he said to him: ‘Verily, my dear, that finest essence which you do not perceive—verily, my dear, from that finest essence this great Nyagrodha (sacred fig) tree thus1 arises.

3. Believe me, my dear,’ said he, (3) ‘that which is the finest essence—this whole world has that as its soul. That is Reality. That is Ātman (Soul). That art thou, Śvetaketu.’

‘Do you, Sir, cause me to understand even more.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

Thirteenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Place this salt in the water. In the morning come unto me.’

Then he did so.

Then he said to him: ‘That salt you placed in the water last evening—please, bring it hither.’

Then he grasped for it, but did not find it, as it was completely dissolved.

2. ‘Please, take a sip of it from this end,’ said he. ‘How is it?’

‘Salt.’

‘Take a sip from the middle,’ said he. ‘How is it?’

‘Salt.’

‘Take a sip from that end,’ said he. ‘How is it?’

‘Salt.’

‘Set it aside.2 Then come unto me.’

He did so, saying, ‘It is always the same.’

Then he said to him: ‘Verily, indeed, my dear, you do not perceive Being here. Verily, indeed, it is here.

3. That which is the finest essence—this whole world has that as its soul. That is Reality. That is Ātman (Soul). That art thou, Śvetaketu.’

‘Do you, Sir, cause me to understand even more.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

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Fourteenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Just as, my dear, one might lead away from the Gandhāras a person with his eyes bandaged, and then abandon him in an uninhabited place; as there he might be blown forth either to the east, to the north, or to the south, since he had been led off with his eyes bandaged and deserted with his eyes bandaged; [2] as, if one released his bandage and told him, “In that direction are the Gandhāras; go in that direction!” he would, if he were a sensible man, by asking [his way] from village to village, and being informed, arrive home at the Gandhāras—even so here on earth one who has a teacher knows: “I belong here only so long as I shall not be released [from the body]. Then I shall arrive home.”

3. That which is the finest essence—this whole world has that as its soul. That is Reality. That is Ātman (Soul). That art thou, Śvetaketu.’

‘Do you, Sir, cause me to understand even more.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

Fifteenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Also, my dear, around a [deathly] sick person his kinsmen gather, and ask, “Do you know me?” “Do you know me?” So long as his voice does not go into his mind, his mind into his breath, his breath into heat, the heat into the highest divinity—so long he knows.

2. Then when his voice goes into his mind, his mind into his breath, his breath into heat, the heat into the highest divinity1—then he knows not.

3. That which is the finest essence—this whole world has that as its soul. That is Reality. That is Ātman (Soul). That art thou, Śvetaketu.’

‘Do you, Sir, cause me to understand even more.’

‘So be it, my dear,’ said he.

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Sixteenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘And also, my dear, they lead up a man seized by the hand, and call: “He has stolen! He has committed a theft! Heat the ax for him!” If he is the doer of the deed, thereupon he makes himself (ātmānam) untrue. Speaking untruth, he covers himself with untruth. He seizes hold of the heated ax, and is burned. Then he is slain.

2. But if he is not the doer of the deed, thereupon he makes himself true. Speaking truth, he covers himself with truth. He seizes hold of the heated ax, and is not burned. Then he is released.

3. As in this case he would not be burned [because of the truth], so this whole world has that [truth] as its soul. That is Reality. That is Ātman (Soul). That art thou, Śvetaketu.’

Then he understood it from him—yea, he understood.

SEVENTH PRAPĀṬHAKA
The instruction of Nārada by Sanatkumāra

Progressive worship of Brahma up to the Universal Soul

First Khaṇḍa

1. Om! ‘Teach me, Sir!’1—with these words Nārada came to Sanatkumāra.

To him he then said: ‘Come to me with what you know. Then I will tell you still further.’

2. Then he said to him: ‘Sir, I know the Rig-Veda, the Yajur-Veda, the Sāma-Veda, the Atharva-Veda as the fourth, Legend and Ancient Lore (itihāsa-purāṇa) as the fifth, the Veda of the Vedas [i.e. Grammar], Rites for the Manes, Mathematics, Augury (daiva), Chronology, Logic, Polity, the Science of the Gods (deva-vidyā), the Science of Sacred Knowledge (brahma-vidyā), Demonology (bhūta-vidyā), Military Science (kṣatra-vidyā), Astrology (nakṣatra-vidyā), the Science Edition: current; Page: [251] of Snake-charming, and the Fine Arts (sarpa-devajana-vidyā).1 This, Sir, I know.

3. Such a one am I, Sir, knowing the sacred sayings (mantra-vid), but not knowing the Soul (Ātman). It has been heard by me from those who are like you, Sir, that he who knows the Soul (Ātman) crosses over sorrow. Such a sorrowing one am I, Sir. Do you, Sir, cause me, who am such a one, to cross over to the other side of sorrow.’

To him he then said: ‘Verily, whatever you have here learned, verily, that is mere name (nāman).

4. Verily, a Name are the Rig-Veda, the Yajur-Veda, the Sāma-Veda, the Atharva-Veda as the fourth, Legend and Ancient Lore (itihāsa-purāṇa) as the fifth, the Veda of the Vedas [i.e. Grammar], Rites for the Manes, Mathematics, Augury (daiva), Chronology, Logic, Polity, the Science of the Gods (deva-vidyā), the Science of Sacred Knowledge (brahma-vidyā), Demonology (bhūta-vidyā), Military Science (kṣatra-vidyā), Astrology (nakṣatra-vidyā), the Science of Snake-charming, and the Fine Arts (sarpa-devajana-vidyā). This is mere Name. Reverence Name.

5. He who reverences Name as Brahma—as far as Name goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Name as Brahma.’

  • ‘Is there, Sir, more than Name?’
  • ‘There is, assuredly, more than Name.’
  • ‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Second Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Speech (vāc), assuredly, is more than Name. Speech, verily, makes known the Rig-Veda, the Yajur-Veda, the Sāma-Veda, the Atharva-Veda as the fourth, Legend and Ancient Lore as the fifth, the Veda of the Vedas [i.e. Grammar], Rites for the Manes, Mathematics, Augury, Chronology, Logic, Polity, the Science of the Gods, the Science of Sacred Knowledge, Demonology, Military Science, Astrology, the Science of Snake-charming, and the Fine Arts, as well as heaven and earth, wind and space, water and heat, gods and Edition: current; Page: [252] men, beasts and birds, grass and trees, animals together with worms, flies, and ants, right and wrong, true and false, good and bad, pleasant and unpleasant. Verily, if there were no speech, neither right nor wrong would be known, neither true nor false, neither good nor bad, neither pleasant nor unpleasant. Speech, indeed, makes all this known. Reverence Speech.

2. He who reverences Speech as Brahma—as far as Speech goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Speech as Brahma.’

  • ‘Is there, Sir, more than Speech?’
  • ‘There is, assuredly, more than Speech.’
  • ‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Third Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Mind (manas), assuredly, is more than Speech. Verily, as the closed hand compasses two acorns, or two kola-berries, or two dice-nuts, so Mind compasses both Speech and Name. When through Mind one has in mind “I wish to learn the sacred sayings (mantra),” then he learns them; “I wish to perform sacred works (karma),” then he performs them; “I would desire sons and cattle,” then he desires them; “I would desire this world and the yonder,” then he desires them. Truly the self (ātman) is Mind. Truly, the world (loka) is Mind. Truly, Brahma is Mind.

2. He who reverences Mind as Brahma—as far as Mind goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Mind as Brahma.’

  • ‘Is there, Sir, more than Mind?’
  • ‘There is, assuredly, more than Mind.’
  • ‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Fourth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Conception (saṁkalpa), assuredly, is more than Mind. Verily, when one forms a Conception, then he has in Mind, then he utters Speech, and he utters it in Name. The sacred sayings (mantra) are included in Name; and sacred works in the sacred sayings.

2. Verily, these have Conception as their union-point, have Edition: current; Page: [253] Conception as their soul, are established on Conception. Heaven and earth were formed through Conception. Wind and space were formed through Conception. Water and heat were formed through Conception. Through their having been formed, rain becomes formed. Through rain having been formed, food becomes formed. Through food having been formed, living creatures (prāṇa) become formed. Through living creatures having been formed, sacred sayings (mantra) become formed. Through sacred sayings having been formed, sacred works (karma) become [per]formed. Through sacred works having been [per]formed, the world becomes formed. Through the world having been formed, everything becomes formed. Such is Conception. Reverence Conception.

3. He who reverences Conception as Brahma—he, verily, attains the Conception-worlds; himself being enduring, the enduring worlds; himself established, the established worlds; himself unwavering, the unwavering worlds. As far as Conception goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Conception as Brahma.’

  • ‘Is there, Sir, more than Conception?’
  • ‘There is, assuredly, more than Conception.’
  • ‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Fifth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Thought (citta), assuredly, is more than Conception. Verily, when one thinks, then he forms a conception, then he has in Mind, then he utters Speech, and he utters it in Name. The sacred sayings (mantra) are included in Name; and sacred works in the sacred sayings.

2. Verily, these things have Thought as their union-point, have Thought as their soul, are established on Thought. Therefore, even if one who knows much is without Thought, people say of him: “He is not anybody, whatever he knows! Verily, if he did know, he would not be so without Thought!” On the other hand, if one who knows little possesses Thought, people are desirous of listening to him. Truly, indeed, Thought is the union-point, Thought is the soul (ātman), Thought is the support of these things. Reverence Thought.

3. He who reverences Thought as Brahma—he, verily, Edition: current; Page: [254] attains the Thought-worlds; himself being enduring, the enduring worlds; himself being established, the established worlds; himself being unwavering, the unwavering worlds. As far as Thought goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Thought as Brahma.’

  • ‘Is there, Sir, more than Thought?’
  • ‘There is, assuredly, more than Thought.’
  • ‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Sixth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Meditation (dhyāna), assuredly, is more than Thought. The earth meditates, as it were (iva). The atmosphere meditates, as it were. The heaven meditates, as it were. Water meditates, as it were. Mountains meditate, as it were. Gods and men meditate, as it were. Therefore whoever among men here attain greatness—they have, as it were, a part of the reward of meditation. Now, those who are small are quarrelers, tale-bearers, slanderers. But those who are superior—they have, as it were, a part of the reward of Meditation. Reverence Meditation.

2. He who reverences Meditation as Brahma—as far as Meditation goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Meditation as Brahma.’

  • ‘Is there, Sir, more than Meditation?’
  • ‘There is, assuredly, more than Meditation.’
  • ‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Seventh Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Understanding (vijñāna), assuredly, is more than Meditation. Verily, by Understanding one understands the Rig-Veda, the Yajur-Veda, the Sāma-Veda, the Atharva-Veda as the fourth, Legend and Ancient Lore (itihāsa-purāṇa) as the fifth, the Veda of the Vedas [i.e. Grammar], Rites for the Manes, Mathematics, Augury (daiva), Chronology, Logic, Polity, the Science of the Gods (deva-vidyā), the Science of Sacred Knowledge (brahma-vidyā), Demonology (bhūta-vidyā), Military Science (kṣatra-vidyā), Astrology (nakṣatra-vidyā), the Science of Snake-charming, and the Fine Arts (sarpa-devajana-vidyā), Edition: current; Page: [255] as well as heaven and earth, wind and space, water and heat, gods and men, beasts and birds, grass and trees, animals together with worms, flies, and ants, right and wrong, true and false, good and bad, pleasant and unpleasant, food and drink, this world and the yonder—all this one understands just with Understanding. Reverence Understanding.

2. He who reverences Understanding as Brahma—he, verily, attains the worlds of Understanding (vijñāna) and of Knowledge (jñāna). As far as Understanding goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Understanding as Brahma.’

  • ‘Is there, Sir, more than Understanding?’
  • ‘There is, assuredly, more than Understanding.’
  • ‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Eighth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Strength (bala), assuredly, is more than Understanding. Indeed, one man of Strength causes a hundred men of Understanding to tremble. When one is becoming strong, he becomes a rising man. Rising, he becomes an attendant. Attending, he becomes attached as a pupil. Attached as a pupil, he becomes a seer, he becomes a hearer, he becomes a thinker, he becomes a perceiver, he becomes a doer, he becomes an understander. By Strength, verily, the earth stands; by Strength, the atmosphere; by Strength, the sky; by Strength, the mountains; by Strength, gods and men; by Strength, beasts and birds, grass and trees, animals together with worms, flies, and ants. By Strength the world stands. Reverence Strength.

2. He who reverences Strength as Brahma—as far as Strength goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Strength as Brahma.’

  • ‘Is there, Sir, more than Strength?’
  • ‘There is, assuredly, more than Strength.’
  • ‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Ninth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Food (anna), assuredly, is more than Strength. Therefore, if one should not eat for ten days,1 even though he might Edition: current; Page: [256] live, yet verily he becomes a non-seer, a non-hearer, a non-thinker, a non-perceiver, a non-doer, a non-understander. But on the entrance of food he becomes a seer, he becomes a hearer, he becomes a thinker, he becomes a perceiver, he becomes a doer, he becomes an understander. Reverence Food.

2. He who reverences Food as Brahma—he, verily, attains the worlds of Food and Drink. As far as Food goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Food as Brahma.’

  • ‘Is there, Sir, more than Food?’
  • ‘There is, assuredly, more than Food.’
  • ‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Tenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Water (āpas), verily, is more than Food. Therefore, when there is not a good rain, living creatures (prāṇa) sicken with the thought, “Food will become scarce.” But when there is a good rain, living creatures become happy with the thought, “Food will become abundant.” It is just Water solidified that is this earth, that is the atmosphere, that is the sky, that is gods and men, beasts and birds, grass and trees, animals together with worms, flies, and ants; all these are just Water solidified. Reverence Water.

2. He who reverences Water (āpas) as Brahma obtains (āpnoti) all his desires and becomes satisfied. As far as Water goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Water as Brahma.’

  • ‘Is there, Sir, more than Water?’
  • ‘There is, assuredly, more than Water.’
  • ‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Eleventh Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Heat (tejas), verily, is more than Water. That, verily, seizes hold of the wind, and heats the ether (ākāśa). Then people say: “It is hot! It is burning hot! Surely it will rain!” Heat indeed first indicates this, and then lets out water. So, with lightnings darting up and across the sky, thunders roll. Therefore people say: “It lightens! It Edition: current; Page: [257] thunders! Surely it will rain!” Heat indeed first indicates this, and then lets out water. Reverence Heat.

2. He who reverences Heat as Brahma—he, verily, being glowing, attains glowing, shining worlds freed from darkness. As far as Heat goes, so far he has unlimited Freedom, he who reverences Heat as Brahma.’

‘Is there, Sir, more than Heat?’

‘There is, assuredly, more than Heat.’

‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Twelfth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Space (ākāśa), assuredly, is more than Heat. In Space, verily, are both sun and moon, lightning, stars and fire. Through Space one calls out; through Space one hears; through Space one answers. In Space one enjoys himself; in Space one does not enjoy himself. In Space one is born; unto Space one is born. Reverence Space.

2. He who reverences Space as Brahma—he, verily, attains spacious, gleaming, unconfined, wide-extending worlds. As far as Space goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Space as Brahma.’

‘Is there, Sir, more than Space?’

‘There is, assuredly, more than Space.’

‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Thirteenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Memory (smara), verily, is more than Space. Therefore, even if many not possessing Memory should be assembled, indeed they would not hear any one at all, they would not think, they would not understand. But assuredly, if they should remember, then they would hear, then they would think, then they would understand. Through Memory, assuredly, one discerns his children; through Memory, his cattle. Reverence Memory.

2. He who reverences Memory as Brahma—as far as Memory goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Memory as Brahma.’

‘Is there, Sir, more than Memory?’

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‘There is, assuredly, more than Memory.’

‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Fourteenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Hope (āśā), assuredly, is more than Memory. When kindled by Hope, verily, Memory learns the sacred sayings (mantra); [kindled by Hope] one performs sacred works (karma), longs for sons and cattle, for this world and the yonder. Reverence Hope.

2. He who reverences Hope as Brahma—through Hope all his desires prosper, his wishes are not unavailing. As far as Hope goes, so far he has unlimited freedom, he who reverences Hope as Brahma.’

‘Is there, Sir, more than Hope?’

‘There is, assuredly, more than Hope.’

‘Do you, Sir, tell me it.’

Fifteenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Life (prāṇa, breath), verily, is more than Hope. Just as, verily, the spokes are fastened in the hub, so on this vital breath everything is fastened. Life (prāṇa) goes on with vital breath (prāṇa). Vital breath (prāṇa) gives life (prāṇa); it gives [life] to a living creature (prāṇa). One’s father is vital breath; one’s mother, vital breath; one’s brother, vital breath; one’s sister, vital breath; one’s teacher (ācārya), vital breath; a Brahman is vital breath.

2. If one answers harshly, as it were (iva), a father or mother, or brother, or sister, or teacher, or a Brahman, people say to him: “Shame on you! Verily, you are a slayer of your father! Verily, you are a slayer of your mother! Verily, you are a slayer of your brother! Verily, you are a slayer of your sister! Verily, you are a slayer of your teacher! Verily, you are a slayer of a Brahman!”

3. But if, when the vital breath has departed from them, one should even shove them with a poker and burn up every bit of them,1 people would not say to him: “You are a slayer of your father,” nor “You are a slayer of your mother,” Edition: current; Page: [259] nor “You are a slayer of your brother,” nor “You are a slayer of your sister,” nor “You are a slayer of your teacher,” nor “You are a slayer of a Brahman.”

4. For indeed, vital breath (prāṇa) is all these things. Verily, he who sees this, thinks this, understands this, becomes a superior speaker. Even if people should say to him “You are a superior speaker,” he should say “I am a superior speaker.” He should not deny it.

Sixteenth Khaṇḍa

1. But he, verily, speaks superiorly who speaks superiorly with Truth (satya).’

‘Then I, Sir, would speak superiorly with Truth.’

‘But one must desire to understand the Truth.’

‘Sir, I desire to understand the Truth.’

Seventeenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Verily, when one understands, then he speaks the Truth. One who does not understand, does not speak the Truth. Only he who understands speaks the Truth. But one must desire to understand Understanding (vijñāna).’

‘Sir, I desire to understand Understanding.’

Eighteenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Verily, when one thinks, then he understands. Without thinking one does not understand. Only after having thought does one understand. But one must desire to understand Thought (mati).’

‘Sir, I desire to understand Thought.’

Nineteenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Verily, when one has Faith, then he thinks. One who has not Faith does not think. Only he who has Faith thinks. But one must desire to understand Faith (śraddhā).’

‘Sir, I desire to understand Faith.’

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Twentieth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Verily, when one grows forth, then he has Faith. One who does not grow forth does not have faith. Only he who grows forth (niḥ + √sthā) has faith. But one must desire to understand the Growing Forth (niḥ-ṣṭhā).’

‘Sir, I desire to understand the Growing Forth.’

Twenty-first Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Verily, when one is active, then he grows forth. Without being active one does not grow forth. Only by activity does one grow forth. But one must desire to understand Activity (kṛti).’

‘Sir, I desire to understand Activity.’

Twenty-second Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Verily, when one gets Pleasure for himself, then he is active. Without getting Pleasure one is not active. Only by getting Pleasure is one active. But one must desire to understand Pleasure (sukha).’

‘Sir, I desire to understand Pleasure.’

Twenty-third Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Verily, a Plenum is the same as Pleasure. There is no Pleasure in the small. Only a Plenum is Pleasure. But one must desire to understand the Plenum (bhūman).’

‘Sir, I desire to understand the Plenum.’

Twenty-fourth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Where one sees nothing else, hears nothing else, understands nothing else—that is a Plenum. But where one sees something else—that is the small. Verily, the Plenum is the same as the immortal; but the small is the same as the mortal.’

‘That Plenum, Sir—on what is it established?’

‘On its own greatness—unless, indeed, not on greatness at all.

Here on earth people call cows and horses, elephants and gold, slaves and wives, fields and abodes “greatness.” I do Edition: current; Page: [261] not speak thus; I do not speak thus,’ said he; ‘for [in that case] one thing is established upon another.

Twenty-fifth Khaṇḍa

1. That [Plenum], indeed, is below. It is above. It is to the west. It is to the east. It is to the south. It is to the north. It, indeed, is this whole world.—

Now next the instruction with regard to the Ego (ahaṁkārādeśa).—

‘I, indeed, am below. I am above. I am to the west. I am to the east. I am to the south. I am to the north. I, indeed, am this whole world.’—

2. Now next the instruction with regard to the soul (ātmādeśa).—

‘The Soul (Ātman), indeed, is below. The Soul is above. The Soul is to the west. The Soul is to the east. The Soul is to the south. The Soul is to the north. The Soul, indeed, is this whole world.

Verily, he who sees this, who thinks this, who understands this, who has pleasure in the Soul, who has delight in the Soul, who has intercourse with the Soul, who has bliss in the Soul—he is autonomous (sva-rāj); he has unlimited freedom in all worlds. But they who know otherwise than this, are heteronomous (anya-rājan); they have perishable worlds; in all worlds they have no freedom.

Twenty-sixth Khaṇḍa

1. Verily, for him who sees this, who thinks this, who understands this, Vital Breath (prāṇa) arises from the Soul (Ātman); Hope, from the Soul; Memory, from the Soul; Space (ākāśa), from the Soul; Heat, from the Soul; Water, from the Soul; appearance and disappearance, from the Soul; Food, from the Soul; Strength, from the Soul; Understanding, from the Soul; Meditation, from the Soul; Thought, from the Soul; Conception, from the Soul; Mind, from the Soul; Speech, from the Soul; Name, from the Soul; sacred sayings (mantra), from the Soul; sacred works (karma), from the Soul; indeed this whole world, from the Soul.’

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2. As to this there is the following verse:—

  • The seer sees not death,
  • Nor sickness, nor any distress.
  • The seer sees only the All,
  • Obtains the All entirely.

That [Soul] is onefold, is threefold, fivefold, sevenfold, and also ninefold;

  • Again, declared elevenfold,
  • And hundred-and-eleven-fold,
  • And also twenty-thousand-fold.1

In pure nourishment (āhāra-śuddhi) there is a pure nature (sattva-śuddhi). In a pure nature the traditional doctrines (smṛti) become firmly fixed. In acquiring the traditional doctrines there is release from all knots [of the heart]. To such a one2 who has his stains wiped away the blessed Sanatkumāra shows the further shore of darkness. People call him Skanda3—yea, they call him Skanda.

EIGHTH PRAPĀṬHAKA
Concerning the nature of the soul

First Khaṇḍa

The universal real Soul, within the heart and in the world

1. Om! [The teacher should say:] ‘Now, what is here in this city of Brahma,4 is an abode, a small lotus-flower.5 Within that is a small space. What is within that, should be searched out; that, assuredly, is what one should desire to understand.’

2. If they [i.e. the pupils] should say to him: ‘This abode, Edition: current; Page: [263] the small lotus-flower that is here in this city of Brahma, and the small space within that—what is there there which should be searched out, which assuredly one should desire to understand?’ [3] he should say: ‘As far, verily, as this world-space (ayam ākāśa) extends, so far extends the space within the heart. Within it, indeed, are contained both heaven and earth, both fire and wind, both sun and moon, lightning and the stars, both what one possesses here and what one does not possess; everything here is contained within it.’

4. If they should say to him: ‘If within this city of Brahma is contained everything here, all beings as well as all desires, when old age overtakes it or it perishes, what is left over therefrom?’ [5] he should say: ‘That does not grow old with one’s old age; it is not slain with one’s murder. That1 is the real city of Brahma. In it desires are contained. That is the Soul (Ātman), free from evil, ageless, deathless, sorrowless, hungerless, thirstless, whose desire is the Real, whose conception is the Real.

For, just as here on earth human beings follow along in subjection to command; of whatever object they are desirous, whether a realm or a part of a field, upon that they live dependent2

6. As here on earth the world which is won by work (karmajita loka) becomes destroyed, even so there the world which is won by merit (puṇya-jita loka) becomes destroyed.

Those who go hence without here having found the Soul (Ātman) and those real desires (satya kāma)—for them in all the worlds there is no freedom. But those who go hence having found here the Soul and those real desires—for them in all worlds there is freedom.

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Second Khaṇḍa

1. If he becomes desirous of the world of fathers, merely out of his conception (saṁkalpa) fathers arise. Possessed of that world of fathers, he is happy.

2. So, if he becomes desirous of the world of mothers, merely out of his conception mothers arise. Possessed of that world of mothers, he is happy.

3. So, if he becomes desirous of the world of brothers, merely out of his conception brothers arise. Possessed of that world of brothers, he is happy.

4. So, if he becomes desirous of the world of sisters, merely out of his conception sisters arise. Possessed of that world of sisters, he is happy.

5. So, if he becomes desirous of the world of friends, merely out of his conception friends arise. Possessed of that world of friends, he is happy.

6. So, if he becomes desirous of the world of perfume and garlands, merely out of his conception perfume and garlands arise. Possessed of that world of perfume and garlands, he is happy.

7. So, if he becomes desirous of the world of food and drink, merely out of his conception food and drink arise. Possessed of that world of food and drink, he is happy.

8. So, if he becomes desirous of the world of song and music, merely out of his conception song and music arise. Possessed of that world of song and music, he is happy.

9. So, if he becomes desirous of the world of women, merely out of his conception women arise. Possessed of that world of women, he is happy.

10. Of whatever object he becomes desirous, whatever desire he desires, merely out of his conception it arises. Possessed of it, he is happy.

Third Khaṇḍa

1. These same are real desires (satya kāma) with a covering of what is false. Although they are real, there is a covering that is false.

For truly, whoever of one’s [fellows] departs hence, one does not get him [back] to look at here.

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2. But those of one’s [fellows] who are alive there, and those who have departed, and whatever else one desires but does not get—all this one finds by going in there [i.e. in the Soul]; for there, truly, are those real desires of his which have a covering of what is false.

So, just as those who do not know the spot might go over a hid treasure of gold again and again, but not find it, even so all creatures here go day by day to that Brahma-world (brahma-loka) [in deep sleep], but do not find it; for truly they are carried astray by what is false.

3. Verily, this Soul (Ātman) is in the heart. The etymological explanation (nirukta) thereof is this: This one is in the heart (hṛdy ayam); therefore it is the heart (hṛdayam). Day by day, verily, he who knows this goes to the heavenly world (svarga loka).

4. Now, that serene one1 who, rising up out of this body, reaches the highest light and appears with his own form—he is the Soul (Ātman),’ said he [i.e. the teacher]. ‘That is the immortal, the fearless. That is Brahma.’

Verily, the name of that Brahma is the Real (satyam).

5. Verily, these are the three syllables: sat-ti-yam.2 The sat (Being)—that is the immortal. The ti—that is the mortal.3 Now the yam—with that one holds the two together. Because with it one holds (√yam) the two together, therefore it is yam. Day by day, verily, he who knows this goes to the heavenly world.

Fourth Khaṇḍa

1. Now, the Soul (Ātman) is the bridge [or, dam], the separation for keeping these worlds apart. Over that bridge [or, dam] there cross neither day, nor night, nor old age, nor death, nor sorrow, nor well-doing, nor evil-doing.

2. All evils turn back therefrom, for that Brahma-world is freed from evil. (2) Therefore, verily, upon crossing that bridge, if one is blind, he becomes no longer blind; if he is sick, he becomes no longer sick. Therefore, verily, upon Edition: current; Page: [266] crossing that bridge, the night appears even as the day, for that Brahma-world is ever illumined.

3. But only they who find that Brahma-world through the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge (brahmacarya)—only they possess that Brahma-world. In all worlds they possess unlimited freedom.

Fifth Khaṇḍa

The true way to the Brahma-world, through a life of abstinent religious study

1. Now, what people call ‘sacrifice’ (yajña) is really the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge (brahmacarya), for only through the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge does he who is a knower (ya jñātṛ) find that [world].

Now, what people call ‘what has been sacrificed’ (iṣṭam) is really the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge, for only after having searched (iṣṭvā) with the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge does one find the Soul (Ātman).

2. Now, what people call ‘the protracted sacrifice’ (sattrāyaṇa) is really the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge, for only through the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge does one find the protection (trāṇa) of the real (sat) Soul (Ātman).

Now, what people call ‘silent asceticism’ (mauna) is really the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge, for only in finding the Soul through the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge does one [really] think (manute).

3. Now, what people call ‘a course of fasting’ (an-āśakāyana1) is really the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge, for the Soul (Ātman) which one finds through the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge perishes not (na naśyati).

Now, what people call ‘betaking oneself to hermit life in the forest’ (araṇyāyana) is really the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge. Verily, the two seas in the Brahma-world, in the third heaven from here, are Ara and Ṇya. There is the lake Airaṁmadīya (‘Affording Refreshment and Ecstasy’); Edition: current; Page: [267] there, the fig-tree Somasavana (‘the Soma-yielding’); there, Brahma’s citadel, Aparājitā (‘the Unconquered’), the golden hall of the Lord (prabhu).

4. But only they who find those two seas, Ara and Ṇya, in the Brahma-world through the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge—only they possess that Brahma-world. In all the worlds they possess unlimited freedom.

Sixth Khaṇḍa

Passing out from the heart through the sun to immortality

1. Now, as for these arteries of the heart—they arise from the finest essence, which is reddish brown, white, blue, yellow, and red: so it is said. Verily, yonder sun is reddish brown; it is white; it is blue; it is yellow; it is red.

2. Now, as a great extending highway goes to two villages, this one and the yonder, even so these rays of the sun go to two worlds, this one and the yonder. They extend from yonder sun, and creep into these arteries. They extend from these arteries, and creep into yonder sun.

3. Now, when one is thus sound asleep, composed, serene, he knows no dream; then he has crept into these arteries; so no evil touches him, for then he has reached the Bright Power (tejas).

4. Now, when one thus becomes reduced to weakness, those sitting around say: ‘Do you know me?’ ‘Do you know me?’ As long as he has not departed from this body, he knows them.

5. But when he thus departs from this body, then he ascends upward with these very rays of the sun. With the thought of Om, verily, he passes up. As quickly as one could direct his mind to it, he comes to the sun. That, verily, indeed, is the world-door, an entrance for knowers, a stopping for non-knowers.

6. As to this there is the following verse:—

  • There are a hundred and one arteries of the heart.
  • One of these passes up to the crown of the head.
  • Going up by it, one goes to immortality.
  • The others are for departing in various directions.1
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Seventh Khaṇḍa

The progressive instruction of Indra by Prajāpati concerning the real self

1. ‘The Self (Ātman), which is free from evil, ageless, deathless, sorrowless, hungerless, thirstless, whose desire is the Real, whose conception is the Real—He should be searched out, Him one should desire to understand. He obtains all worlds and all desires who has found out and who understands that Self.’—Thus spake Prajāpati.

2. Then both the gods and the devils (deva-asura) heard it. Then they said: ‘Come! Let us search out that Self, the Self by searching out whom one obtains all worlds and all desires!’

Then Indra from among the gods went forth unto him, and Virocana from among the devils. Then, without communicating with each other, the two came into the presence of Prajāpati, fuel in hand.1

3. Then for thirty-two years the two lived the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge (brahmacarya).

Then Prajāpati said to the two: ‘Desiring what have you been living?’

Then the two said: ‘ “The Self (Ātman), which is free from evil, ageless, deathless, sorrowless, hungerless, thirstless, whose desire is the Real, whose conception is the Real—He should be searched out, Him one should desire to understand. He obtains all worlds and all desires who has found out and who understands that Self.”—Such do people declare to be your words, Sir. We have been living desiring Him.’

4. Then Prajāpati said to the two: ‘That Person who is seen in the eye—He is the Self (Ātman) of whom I spoke.2 That is the immortal, the fearless. That is Brahma.’

‘But this one, Sir, who is observed in water and in a mirror—which one is he?’

‘The same one, indeed, is observed in all these,’ said he.

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Eighth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Look at yourself in a pan of water. Anything that you do not understand of the Self, tell me.’

Then the two looked in a pan of water.

Then Prajāpati said to the two: ‘What do you see?’

Then the two said: ‘We see everything here, Sir, a Self corresponding exactly, even to the hair and finger-nails!’

2. Then Prajāpati said to the two: ‘Make yourselves well-ornamented, well-dressed, adorned, and look in a pan of water.’

Then the two made themselves well-ornamented, well-dressed, adorned, and looked in a pan of water.

Then Prajāpati said to the two: ‘What do you see?’

3. Then the two said: ‘Just as we ourselves are here, Sir, well-ornamented, well-dressed, adorned—so there, Sir, well-ornamented, well-dressed, adorned.’

‘That is the Self,’ said he. ‘That is the immortal, the fearless. That is Brahma.’

Then with tranquil heart (śānta-hrdaya) the two went forth.

4. Then Prajāpati glanced after them, and said: ‘They go without having comprehended, without having found the Self (Ātman). Whosoever shall have such a mystic doctrine (upaniṣad), be they gods or be they devils, they shall perish.’

Then with tranquil heart Virocana came to the devils. To them he then declared this mystic doctrine (upaniṣad): ‘Oneself (ātman)1 is to be made happy here on earth. Oneself is to be waited upon. He who makes his own self (ātman) happy here on earth, who waits upon himself—he obtains both worlds, both this world and the yonder.’

5. Therefore even now here on earth they say of one who is not a giver, who is not a believer (a-śraddadhāna), who is not a sacrificer, ‘Oh! devilish (asura)!’ for such is the doctrine (upaniṣad) of the devils. They adorn the body (śarīra) of one deceased with what they have begged, with dress, with ornament, as they call it, for they think that thereby they will win yonder world.

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Ninth Khaṇḍa

1. But then Indra, even before reaching the gods, saw this danger: ‘Just as, indeed, that one [i.e. the bodily self] is well-ornamented when this body (śarīra) is well-ornamented, well-dressed when this is well-dressed, adorned when this is adorned, even so that one is blind when this is blind, lame when this is lame, maimed when this is maimed. It perishes immediately upon the perishing of this body. I see nothing enjoyable in this.’

2. Fuel in hand, back again he came. Then Prajāpati said to him: ‘Desiring what, O Maghavan (‘Munificent One’), have you come back again, since you along with Virocana went forth with tranquil heart?’

Then he said: ‘Just as, indeed, that one [i.e. the bodily self] is well-ornamented when this body is well-ornamented, well-dressed when this is well-dressed, adorned when this is adorned, even so it is blind when this is blind, lame when this is lame, maimed when this is maimed. It perishes immediately upon the perishing of this body. I see nothing enjoyable in this.’

3. ‘He is even so, O Maghavan,’ said he. ‘However, I will explain this further to you. Live with me thirty-two years more.’

Then he lived with him thirty-two years more

To him [i.e. to Indra] he [i.e. Prajāpati] then said:—

Tenth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘He who moves about happy in a dream—he is the Self (Ātman),’ said he. ‘That is the immortal, the fearless. That is Brahma.’

Then with tranquil heart he [i. e. Indra] went forth.

Then, even before reaching the gods, he saw this danger: ‘Now, even if this body is blind, that one [i.e. the Self, Ātman] is not blind. If this is lame, he is not lame. Indeed, he does not suffer defect through defect of this. [2] He is not slain with one’s murder. He is not lame with one’s lameness. Nevertheless, as it were (iva), they kill him; as it were, they Edition: current; Page: [271] unclothe1 him; as it were, he comes to experience what is unpleasant; as it were, he even weeps. I see nothing enjoyable in this.’

3. Fuel in hand, back again he came. Then Prajāpati said to him: ‘Desiring what, O Maghavan, have you come back again, since you went forth with tranquil heart?’

Then he said: ‘Now, Sir, even if this body is blind, that one [i.e. the Self] is not blind. If this is lame, he is not lame. Indeed, he does not suffer defect through defect of this. [4] He is not slain with one’s murder. He is not lame with one’s lameness. Nevertheless, as it were, they kill him; as it were, they unclothe1 him; as it were, he comes to experience what is unpleasant; as it were, he even weeps. I see nothing enjoyable in this.’

‘He is even so, O Maghavan,’ said he. ‘However, I will explain this further to you. Live with me thirty-two years more.’

Then he lived with him thirty-two years more.

To him [i. e. to Indra] he [i. e. Prajāpati] then said:—

Eleventh Khaṇḍa

1. ‘Now, when one is sound asleep, composed, screne, and knows no dream—that is the Self (Ātman),’ said he. ‘That is the immortal, the fearless. That is Brahma.’

Then with tranquil heart he went forth.

Then, even before reaching the gods, he saw this danger: ‘Assuredly, indeed, this one does not exactly know himself (ātmānam) with the thought “I am he,” nor indeed the things here. He becomes one who has gone to destruction. I see nothing enjoyable in this.’

2. Fuel in hand, back again he came. Then Prajāpati said to him: ‘Desiring what, O Maghavan, have you come back again, since you went forth with tranquil heart?’

Then he [i. e. Indra] said: ‘Assuredly, this [self] does not exactly know himself with the thought “I am he,” nor indeed Edition: current; Page: [272] the things here. He becomes one who has gone to destruction. I see nothing enjoyable in this.’

3. ‘He is even so, O Maghavan,’ said he. ‘However, I will explain this further to you, and there is nothing else besides this. Live with me five years more.’

Then he lived with him five years more.—That makes one hundred and one years. Thus it is that people say, ‘Verily, for one hundred and one years Maghavan lived the chaste life of a student of sacred knowledge (brahmacarya) with Prajāpati.’—

To him [i.e. to Indra] he [i.e. Prajāpati] then said:—

Twelfth Khaṇḍa

1. ‘O Maghavan, verily, this body (śarīra) is mortal. It has been appropriated by Death (Mṛityu). [But] it is the standing-ground of that deathless, bodiless Self (Ātman). Verily, he who is incorporate has been appropriated by pleasure and pain. Verily, there is no freedom from pleasure and pain for one while he is incorporate. Verily, while one is bodiless, pleasure and pain do not touch him.

2. The wind is bodiless. Clouds, lightning, thunder—these are bodiless. Now as these, when they arise from yonder space and reach the highest light, appear each with its own form, [3] even so that serene one (samprasāda), when he rises up from this body (śarīra) and reaches the highest light, appears with his own form. Such a one is the supreme person (uttama puruṣa). There such a one goes around laughing, sporting, having enjoyment with women or chariots or friends, not remembering the appendage of this body. As a draft-animal is yoked in a wagon, even so this spirit (prāṇa) is yoked in this body.

4. Now, when the eye is directed thus toward space, that is the seeing person (cākṣuṣa puruṣa); the eye is [the instrument] for seeing. Now, he who knows “Let me smell this”—that is the Self (Ātman); the nose is [the instrument] for smelling. Now, he who knows “Let me utter this”—that is the Self; the voice is [the instrument] for utterance. Now, he who knows “Let me hear this”—that is the Self; the ear is [the instrument] for hearing.

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5. Now, he who knows “Let me think this”—that is the Self; the mind (manas) is his divine eye (daiva cakṣu). He, verily, with that divine eye the mind, sees desires here, and experiences enjoyment.

6. Verily, those gods who are in the Brahma-world1 reverence that Self. Therefore all worlds and all desires have been appropriated by them. He obtains all worlds and all desires who has found out and who understands that Self (Ātman).’

Thus spake Prajāpati—yea, thus spake Prajāpati!

Thirteenth Khaṇḍa

A paean of the perfected soul

1. From the dark I go to the varicolored. From the varicolored I go to the dark. Shaking off evil, as a horse his hairs; shaking off the body (śarīra), as the moon releases itself from the mouth of Rāhu2; I, a perfected soul (kṛtātman), pass into the uncreated Brahma-world—yea, into it I pass!

Fourteenth Khaṇḍa

The exultation and prayer of a glorious learner

1. Verily, what is called space (ākāśa) is the accomplisher of name and form.3 That within which they are, is Brahma. That is the immortal. That is the Self (Ātman, Soul).

I go to Prajāpati’s abode and assembly-hall.

I am the glory of the Brahmans (brāhmaṇa), the glory of the princes (rājan), the glory of the people (viś).

I have attained unto glory.

May I, who am the glory of the glories, not go to hoary and toothless, yea to toothless and hoary and driveling [old age]!

Yea, may I not go to driveling [old age]!

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Fifteenth Khaṇḍa

Final words to the departing pupil

1. This did Brahmā tell to Prajāpati; Prajāpati, to Manu, Manu, to human beings (prajā).

He who according to rule has learned the Veda from the family of a teacher, in time left over from doing work for the teacher; he who, after having come back again, in a home of his own continues Veda-study in a clean place and produces [sons and pupils]; he who has concentrated all his senses upon the Soul (Ātman); he who is harmless (ahiṁsant) toward all things elsewhere than at holy places (tīrtha)1—he, indeed, who lives thus throughout his length of life, reaches the Brahma-world and does not return hither again—yea, he does not return hither again!2

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TAITTIRĪYA UPANISHAD

FIRST VALLĪ
(Śikshā Vallī, ‘Chapter concerning Instruction’)

First Anuvāka

Invocation, adoration, and supplication

Om!

  • Propitious unto us, Mitra! Propitious, Varuṇa!
  • Propitious unto us let Aryaman be!
  • Propitious unto us, India! Bṛihaspati!
  • Propitious unto us, Vishṇu, the Wide-strider!1

Adoration to Brahma! Adoration to thee, Vāyu!

Thou, indeed, art the perceptible Brahma. Of thee, indeed, the perceptible Brahma, will I speak. I will speak of the right (ṛta). I will speak of the true. Let that favor me! Let that favor the speaker! Let it favor me! Let it favor the speaker!

Om! Peace! Peace! Peace!

Second Anuvāka

Lesson on Pronunciation

Om! We will expound Pronunciation2:

  • the sound (varṇa);
  • the accent (svara);
  • the quantity (mātrā);
  • the force (bala);
  • the articulation (sāma);
  • the combination (santāna).

—Thus has been declared the lesson on Pronunciation.2

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Third Anuvāka

The mystic significance of combinations

1. Glory (yaśas) be with us two1!

Pre-eminence in sacred knowledge (brahma-varcasa) be with us two1!

Now next, we will expound the mystic meaning (upaniṣad) of combination (saṁhitā) in five heads:

  • with regard to the world;
  • with regard to the luminaries;
  • with regard to knowledge;
  • with regard to progeny;
  • with regard to oneself.

Now, with regard to the world.—

The earth is the prior form; the heaven, the latter form. Space is their conjunction; [2] wind, the connection.—Thus with regard to the world.

Now, with regard to the luminaries.—

Fire is the prior form; the sun, the latter form. Water is their conjunction; lightning, the connection.—Thus with regard to the luminaries.

Now, with regard to knowledge.—

The teacher is the prior form; [3] the pupil, the latter form. Knowledge is their conjunction; instruction, the connection.—Thus with regard to knowledge.

Now, with regard to progeny.—

The mother is the prior form; the father, the latter form. Progeny is their conjunction; procreation, the connection.—Thus with regard to progeny.

4. Now, with regard to oneself.—

The lower jaw is the prior form; the upper jaw, the latter form. Speech is their conjunction; the tongue, the connection.—Thus with regard to oneself.

These are the great combinations. He who knows these combinations thus expounded, becomes conjoined with offspring, with cattle, with pre-eminence in sacred knowledge, with food, with the heavenly world.

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Fourth Anuvāka

A teacher’s prayer

1. He who is pre-eminent among the Vedic hymns (chandas), who is the all-formed (viśva-rūpa),

Who has sprung into being from immortality above the Vedic hymns—

Let this India save (√spṛ) me with intelligence!

O God (deva), I would become possessor of immortality!

  • May my body be very vigorous!
  • May my tongue be exceeding sweet!
  • May I hear abundantly with my ears!
  • Thou art the sheath of Brahma,
  • With intelligence covered o’er!
  • Guard for me what I have heard!
  • [It is Prosperity] who brings, extends,

[2] And long1 makes her own—

  • My garments and cows,
  • And food and drink alway.
  • Therefore bring me prosperity (śrī)
  • In wool, along with cattle!
  • Hail!

May students of sacred knowledge (bralimacārin) come unto me! Hail!

May students of sacred knowledge come apart unto me! Hail!

May students of sacred knowledge come forth unto me! Hail!

May students of sacred knowledge subdue themselves! Hail!

May students of sacred knowledge tranquillize themselves! Hail!

3. May I become glorious among men! Hail!

May I be better than the very rich! Hail!

Into thee thyself, O Gracious Lord (bhaga), may I enter! Hail!

Do thou thyself, O Gracious Lord, enter into me! Hail!

In such a one, a thousandfold ramified—O Gracious Lord, in thee I am cleansed! Hail!

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As waters run downward, as months into the year, so, O Establisher (dhātṛ), may students of sacred knowledge run unto me from all sides! Hail!

Thou art a refuge! Shine upon me! Come unto me!

Fifth Anuvāka

The fourfold mystic Utterances

1. Bhūr! Bhuvas! Suvar! Verily, these are the three Utterances (vyāhṛti). And beside these, too, Māhācamasya made known a fourth, namely Mahas (Greatness)! That is Brahma. That is the body (ātman); other divinities are the limbs.

Bhūr, verily, is this world; Bhuvas, the atmosphere; Suvar, yonder world; [2] Mahas, the sun. Verily, all worlds are made greater (mahīyante) by the sun.

Bhūr, verily, is Agni (Fire); Bhuvas, Vāyu (Wind); Suvar, Āditya (Sun); Mahas, the moon. Verily, all lights are made greater by the moon.

Bhūr, verily, is the Rig verses; Bhuvas, the Sāman chants; Suvar, the Yajus formulas; [3] Mahas, sacred knowledge (brahma). Verily, all the Vedas are made greater by sacred knowledge.

Bhūr, verily, is the in-breath (prāṇa); Bhuvas, the outbreath (apāna); Suvar, the diffused breath (vyāna); Mahas, food (anna). Verily, all the vital breaths (prāṇa) are made greater by food.

Verily, these four are fourfold. The Utterances are four and four. He who knows these, knows Brahma; to him all the gods bring strength.

Sixth Anuvāka

A departing person’s attainment with the four Utterances

1. This space that is within the heart—therein is the person, consisting of mind (mano-maya), immortal, resplendent. That which hangs down between the palates like a nipple—that is Indra’s1 place of exit.

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Piercing the head at the point where is the edge of the hair, with the word Bhūr he stands upon Agni (Fire); with the word Bhuvas, upon Vāyu (Wind); [2] with the word Suvar, upon Āditya (the Sun); with the word Mahas, upon Brahma. He obtains self-rule (svā-rājya). He obtains the lord of the mind Lord of the voice, lord of the eye, lord of the ear, lord of the understanding—this and more he becomes, even Brahma, whose body is space (ākāśa-śarīra), whose soul is the real (satyātman), whose pleasure-ground is the breathing spirit, whose mind is bliss (mana-ānanda), abounding in tranquillity (śānti-samṛddha), immortal.—Thus, O Prācĩnayogya (Man of the Ancient Yoga), worship.1

Seventh Anuvāka

The fivefoldness of the world and of the individual

Earth, atmosphere, heaven, quarters of heaven, intermediate quarters;
fire, wind, sun, moon, stars;
water, plants, trees, space, one’s body.

—Thus with regard to material existence (adhi-bhūta).

Now with regard to oneself (adhy-ātma).—

Prāṇa Vyāna Apāna Udāna Samāna
breath, breath, breath, breath, breath
sight, hearing, mind, speech, touch;
skin, flesh, muscle, bone, marrow

Having analyzed in this manner, a seer has said: ‘Fivefold, verily, is this whole world. With the fivefold, indeed, one wins the fivefold.’2

Eighth Anuvāka

Glorification of the sacred word ‘Om’

Om is brahma.3

Om is this whole world.

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Om—that is compliance. As also, verily, it is well known—upon the words ‘O! Call forth!’1 they call forth.

With ‘Om’ they sing the Sāman chants.

With ‘Om! Śom!’ they recite the Invocations of Praise (śāstra).

With ‘Om’ the Adhvaryu priest utters the Response.

With ‘Om’ the Brahman priest (brahma) utters the Introductory Eulogy (pra + √stu).

With ‘Om’ one2 assents to the Agni-oblation (agnihotra).

Om,’ says a Brahman (brāhmaṇa) about to recite, ‘may I get the sacred word (brahma)!’ He does get the sacred word.3

Ninth Anuvāka

Study of the sacred word the most important of all duties

The right (ṛta), and also study and teaching.4

The true (satya), and also study and teaching.

Austerity (tapas), and also study and teaching.

Self-control (dama), and also study and teaching.

Tranquillity (śama), and also study and teaching.

The [sacrificial] fires, and also study and teaching.

The Agnihotra sacrifice, and also study and teaching.

Guests, and also study and teaching.

Humanity (mānuṣa), and also study and teaching.

Offspring, and also study and teaching.

Begetting, and also study and teaching.

Procreation, and also study and teaching.

‘The true!’—says Satyavacas (‘Truthful’) Rathītara.

‘Austerity!’—says Taponitya (‘Devoted-to-austerity’) Pauruśishti.

‘Just study and teaching!’—says Nāka (‘Painless’) Maudgalya, ‘for that is austerity—for that is austerity.’

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Tenth Anuvāka

The excellence of Veda-knowledge—a meditation

  • I am the mover1 of the tree!
  • My fame is like a mountain’s peak!

Exaltedly pure, like the excellent nectar in the sun,2

  • I am a shining treasure,
  • Wise, immortal, indestructible3!

This is Triśaṅku’s recitation on Veda-knowledge.4

Eleventh Anuvāka

Practical precepts to a student

1. Having taught the Veda, a teacher further instructs a pupil:—

  • Speak the truth.
  • Practise virtue (dharma).
  • Neglect not study [of the Vedas].

Having brought an acceptable gift to the teacher, cut not off the line of progeny.

  • One should not be negligent of truth.
  • One should not be negligent of virtue.
  • One should not be negligent of welfare.
  • One should not be negligent of prosperity.
  • One should not be negligent of study and teaching.

2. One should not be negligent of duties to the gods and to the fathers.

  • Be one to whom a mother is as a god.
  • Be one to whom a father is as a god.
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  • Be one to whom a teacher is as a god.
  • Be one to whom a guest is as a god.

Those acts which are irreproachable should be practised, and no others.

Those things which among us are good deeds should be revered by you, [3] and no others.

Whatever Brahmans (brāhmaṇa) are superior to us, for them refreshment should be procured by you with a seat.1

  • One should give with faith (śraddhā).
  • One should not give without faith.
  • One should give with plenty (śrī).2
  • One should give with modesty.
  • One should give with fear.
  • One should give with sympathy (sam-vid).3

Now, if you should have doubt concerning an act, or doubt concerning conduct, [4] if there should be there Brahmans competent to judge, apt, devoted, not harsh, lovers of virtue (dharma)—as they may behave themselves in such a case, so should you behave yourself in such a case.

Now, with regard to [people] spoken against, if there should be there Brahmans competent to judge, apt, devoted, not harsh, lovers of virtue—as they may behave themselves with regard to such, so should you behave yourself with regard to such.

This is the teaching. This is the admonition. This is the secret doctrine of the Veda (veda-upaniṣad). This is the instruction. Thus should one worship. Thus, indeed, should one worship.

Twelfth Anuvāka4

Invocation, adoration, and acknowledgment

  • Propitious unto us, Mitra! Propitious, Varuṇa!
  • Propitious unto us let Aryaman be!
  • Propitious unto us, Indra! Bṛihaspati!
  • Propitious unto us, Vishṇu the Wide-strider!
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Adoration to Brahma! Adoration to thee, Vāyu!

Thou, indeed, art the perceptible Brahma. Of thee, indeed, the perceptible Brahma, have I spoken. I have spoken of the right. I have spoken of the true. That has favored me. That has favored the speaker. It has favored me. It has favored the speaker.

Om! Peace! Peace! Peace!

SECOND VALLĪ
(Brahmānanda Vallī, ‘Bliss-of-Brahma Chapter’)

First Anuvāka

The all-comprehensive Brahma of the world and of the individual; knowledge thereof the supreme success

Om! He who knows Brahma, attains the highest!

As to that this [verse] has been declared:—

  • He who knows Brahma as the real (satya), as knowledge (jñāna), as the infinite (ananta),1
  • Set down in the secret place [of the heart], and in the highest heaven (parame vyoman),2
  • He obtains all desires,
  • Together with the intelligent (vipaścit) Brahma.

The course of evolution from the primal Ātman through the five elements to the human person

From this Soul (Ātman), verily, space (ākāśa) arose; from space, wind (vāyu); from wind, fire; from fire, water; from water, the earth; from the earth, herbs; from herbs, food; from food, semen; from semen, the person (puruṣa).

The person in the sphere of food

This, verily, is the person that consists of the essence of food. This, indeed, is his head; this, the right side; this, the left Edition: current; Page: [284] side; this, the body (ātman); this, the lower part, the foundation.

As to that there is also this verse:—

Second Anuvāka

Food the supporting, yet consuming, substance of all life; a phase of Brahma

  • From food, verily, creatures are produced,
  • Whatsoever [creatures] dwell on the earth.
  • Moreover by food, in truth, they live.
  • Moreover into it also they finally pass.1
  • For truly, food is the chief of beings;
  • Therefore it is called a Panacea.2
  • Verily, they obtain all food.
  • Who worship Brahma as food.
  • For truly, food is the chief of beings;
  • Therefore it is called a Panacea.
  • From food created things are born.
  • By food, when born, do they grow up.
  • It both is eaten and eats things.
  • Because of that it is called food.3

The person in the sphere of breath

Verily, other than and within that one that consists of the essence of food is the self that consists of breath. By that this is filled. This, verily, has the form of a person. According to that one’s personal form is this one with the form of a person. The in-breath (prāṇa) is its head; the diffused breath (vyāna), the right wing; the out-breath (apāna), the left wing; space, the body (ātman); the earth, the lower part, the foundation.

As to that there is also this verse:—

Third Anuvāka

Breath, the life of all living beings; a phase of Brahma

  • The gods do breathe along with breath (prāṇa),
  • As also men and beasts.
  • For truly, breath is the life (āyus) of beings.
  • Therefore it is called the Life-of-all (sarvāyuṣa).
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  • To a full life (sarvam āyus) go they
  • Who worship Brahma as breath.
  • For truly, breath is the life of beings;
  • Therefore it is called the Life-of-all.

This, indeed, is its bodily self (śarīra-ātman), as of the former.

The person in the sphere of formative faculty

Verily, other than and within that one that consists of breath is a self that consists of mind (mano-maya). By that this is filled. This, verily, has the form of a person. According to that one’s personal form is this one with the form of a person. The Yajur-Veda is its head; the Rig-Veda, the right side; the Sāma-Veda, the left side; teaching,1 the body (ātman); the Hymns of the Atharvans and Aṅgirases, the lower part, the foundation.

As to that there is also this verse:—

Fourth Anuvāka

Beyond the formative faculty an inexpressible, fearless bliss

  • Wherefrom words turn back,
  • Together with the mind, not having attained—
  • The bliss of Brahma he who knows,
  • Fears not at any time at all.

This, indeed, is its bodily self (śarīra-ātman), as of the former.

The person in the sphere of understanding

Verily, other than and within that one that consists of mind is a self that consists of understanding (vijñāna-maya). By that this is filled. This, verily, has the form of a person. According to that one’s personal form is this one with the form of a person. Faith (śraddhā) is its head; the right (ṛta), the right side; the true (satya), the left side; contemplation (yoga), the body (ātman); might (mahas), the lower part, the foundation.

As to that there is also this verse:—

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Fifth Anuvāka

Understanding, all-directing; a saving and satisfying phase of Brahma

  • Understanding directs the sacrifice;
  • And deeds also it directs.
  • ’Tis understanding that all the gods
  • Do worship as Brahma, as chief.
  • If one knows Brahma as understanding,
  • And if he is not heedless thereto,
  • He leaves his sins (pāpman) in the body,
  • And attains all desires.

This, indeed, is its bodily self, as of the former.

The person in the sphere of bliss

Verily, other than and within that one that consists of understanding is a self that consists of bliss (ānanda-maya). By that this is filled. That one, verily, has the form of a person. According to that one’s personal form is this one with the form of a person. Pleasure (priya) is its head; delight (moda), the right side; great delight (pra-moda), the left side; bliss (ānanda), the body (ātman); Brahma, the lower part, the foundation.

As to that there is also this verse:—

Sixth Anuvāka

Assimilation either to the original or to the derivative Brahma which one knows

  • Non-existent (a-sat) himself does one become,
  • If he knows that Brahma is non-existent.
  • If one knows that Brahma exists,
  • Such a one people thereby know as existent.

This, indeed, is its bodily self, as of the former.

Query: Who reaches the Brahma-world of bliss?

Now next, the appurtenant questions (anu-praśna):—

  • Does any one who knows not,
  • On deceasing, go to yonder world?
  • Or is it that any one who knows,
  • On deceasing, attains yonder world?
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All plurality and antitheses of existence developed from an original and still immanent unity

He desired: ‘Would that I were many! Let me procreate myself!’ He performed austerity. Having performed austerity, he created this whole world, whatever there is here. Having created it, into it, indeed, he entered. Having entered it, he became both the actual (sat) and the yon (tya), both the defined (nirukta) and the undefined, both the based and the non-based, both the conscious (vijñāna) and the unconscious, both the real (satya) and the false (anṛta). As the real, he became whatever there is here. That is what they call the real.

As to that there is also this verse:—

Seventh Anuvāka

The original self-developing non-existence, the essence of existence and the sole basis of fearless bliss

  • In the beginning, verily, this [world] was non-existent.
  • Therefrom, verily, Being (sat) was produced.1
  • That made itself (svayam akuruta) a Soul (Ātman).
  • Therefore it is called the well-done (su-kṛta).2

Verily, what that well-done is—that, verily, is the essence (rasa) [of existence]. For truly, on getting the essence, one becomes blissful. For who indeed would breathe, who would live, if there were not this bliss in space! For truly, this (essence) causes bliss. For truly, when one finds fearlessness as a foundation in that which is invisible, bodiless (an-ātmya), undefined, non-based, then he has reached fearlessness. When, however, one makes a cavity, an interval therein, then he comes to have fear. But that indeed is the fear of one who thinks of himself as a knower.3

As to that there is also this verse:—

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Eighth Anuvāka

All cosmic activity through fear

  • Through fear of Him the Wind (Vāyu) doth blow
  • Through fear of Him the Sun (Sūrya) doth rise.
  • Through fear of Him both Agni (Fire) and Indra
  • And Death (Mṛityu) as fifth do speed along.1

The gradation of blisses up to the bliss of Brahma2

This is a consideration (mīmāṁsā) of bliss.—

Let there be a youth, a good (sādhu) youth, well read, very quick, very firm, very strong. Let this whole earth be full of wealth for him. That is one human bliss.

A hundred human blisses are one bliss of the human Gandharvas (genii)—also of a man who is versed in the scriptures (śrotriya) and who is not smitten with desire.

A hundred blisses of the human Gandharvas are one bliss of the divine Gandharvas—also of a man who is versed in the scriptures and who is not smitten with desire.

A hundred blisses of the divine Gandharvas are one bliss of the fathers in their long-enduring world—also of a man who is versed in the scriptures and who is not smitten with desire.

A hundred blisses of the fathers in their long-enduring world are one bliss of the gods who are born so by birth (ājāna-ja)—also of a man who is versed in the scriptures and who is not smitten with desire.

A hundred blisses of the gods who are born so by birth are one bliss of the gods who are gods by work (karma-deva), who go to the gods by work—also of a man who is versed in the scriptures and who is not smitten with desire.

A hundred blisses of the gods who are gods by work are one bliss of the gods—also of a man who is versed in the scriptures and who is not smitten with desire.

A hundred blisses of the gods are one bliss of Indra—also of a man who is versed in the scriptures and who is not smitten with desire.

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A hundred blisses of Indra are one bliss of Bṛihaspati—also of a man who is versed in the scriptures and who is not smitten with desire.

A hundred blisses of Bṛihaspati are one bliss of Prajāpati—also of a man who is versed in the scriptures and who is not smitten with desire.

A hundred blisses of Prajāpati are one bliss of Brahma—also of a man who is versed in the scriptures and who is not smitten with desire.

The knower of the unity of the human person with the personality in the world reaches the blissful sphere of self-existence

Both he who is here in a person and he who is yonder in the sun—he is one.

He who knows this, on departing from this world, proceeds on to that self which consists of food, proceeds on to that self which consists of breath, proceeds on to that self which consists of mind, proceeds on to that self which consists of understanding, proceeds on to that self which consists of bliss.1

As to that there is also this verse:—

Ninth Anuvāka

The knower of the bliss of Brahma is saved from all fear and from all moral self-reproach

  • Wherefrom words turn back,
  • Together with the mind, not having attained—
  • The bliss of Brahma he who knows,
  • Fears not from anything at all.2

Such a one, verily, the thought does not torment: ‘Why have I not done the good (sādhu)? Why have I done the evil (pāpa)?’3 He who knows this, saves (spṛṇute) himself (ātmānam) from these [thoughts]. For truly, from both of these he saves himself—he who knows this!

Such is the mystic doctrine (upaniṣad)!

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THIRD VALLĪ
(Bhṛigu Vallī, ‘Chapter concerning Bhṛigu’)

Bhṛigu’s progressive learning through austerity of five phases of Brahma

1. Bhṛigu Vāruṇi, verily, approached his father Varuṇa, and said: ‘Declare Brahma, Sir!’1

To him he taught that as food, as breath, as sight, as hearing, as mind, as speech.

Then he said to him: ‘That, verily, whence beings here are born, that by which when born they live, that into which on deceasing they enter—that be desirous of understanding. That is Brahma.’

He performed austerity. Having performed austerity, [2] he understood that Brahma is food. For truly, indeed, beings here are born from food, when born they live by food, on deceasing they enter into food.

Having understood that, he again approached his father Varuṇa, and said: ‘Declare Brahma, Sir!’

Then he said to him: ‘Desire to understand Brahma by austerity. Brahma is austerity (tapas).’

He performed austerity. Having performed austerity, [3] he understood that Brahma is breath (prāṇa). For truly, indeed, beings here are born from breath, when born they live by breath, on deceasing they enter into breath.

Having understood that, he again approached his father Varuṇa, and said: ‘Declare Brahma, Sir!’

Then he said to him: ‘Desire to understand Brahma by austerity. Brahma is austerity!’

He performed austerity. Having performed austerity, [4] he understood that Brahma is mind (manas). For truly, indeed, beings here are born from mind, when born they live by mind, on deceasing they enter into mind.

Having understood that, he again approached his father Varuṇa, and said: ‘Declare Brahma, Sir!’

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Then he said to him: ‘Desire to understand Brahma by austerity. Brahma is austerity.’

He performed austerity. Having performed austerity, [5] he understood that Brahma is understanding (vijñāna). For truly, indeed, beings here are born from understanding, when born they live by understanding, on deceasing they enter into understanding.

Having understood that, he again approached his father Varuṇa, and said: ‘Declare Brahma, Sir!’

Then he said to him: ‘Desire to understand Brahma by austerity. Brahma is austerity.’

He performed austerity. Having performed austerity, [6] he understood that Brahma is bliss (ānanda). For truly, indeed, beings here are born from bliss, when born they live by bliss, on deceasing they enter into bliss.

This is the knowledge of Bhṛigu Vāruṇi, established in the highest heaven. He who knows this, becomes established. He becomes an eater of food, possessing food. He becomes great in offspring, in cattle, in the splendor of sacred knowledge, great in fame.

7. One should not blame food. That is the rule.

The reciprocal relations of food, supporting and supported, illustrated; the importance of such knowledge

Breath (prāṇa), verily, is food. The body is an cater of food. The body is established on breath; breath is established on the body. So food is established on food.

He who knows that food which is established on food, becomes established. He becomes an eater of food, possessing food. He becomes great in offspring, in cattle, in the splendor of sacred knowledge, great in fame.

8. One should not despise food. That is the rule.

Water, verily, is food. Light is an eater of food. Light is established on water; water is established on light. So food is established on food.

He who knows that food which is founded on food, becomes established. He becomes an eater of food, possessing food. He becomes great in offspring, in cattle, in the splendor of sacred knowledge, great in fame.

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9. One should make for himself much food. That is the rule.

The earth, verily, is food. Space is an eater of food. Space is established on the earth; the earth is established on space. So food is established on food.

He who knows that food which is established on food, becomes established. He becomes an eater of food, possessing food. He becomes great in offspring, in cattle, in the splendor of sacred knowledge, great in fame.

A giver of food, prospered accordingly

10. (1) One should not refuse any one at one’s dwelling. That is the rule.

Therefore in any way whatsoever one should obtain much food. Of such a one people say: ‘Food has succeeded (arādhi) for him!’

This food, verily, being prepared (rāddha) [for the suppliant] at the beginning, for him1 food is prepared at the beginning.

This food, verily, being prepared in the middle, for him food is prepared in the middle. This food, verily, being prepared at the end, for him food is prepared at the end—(2) for him who knows this.

Manifestations of Brahma as food

As preservation (kṣema) in speech, acquisition and preservation (yoga-kṣema) in the in-breath and the off-breath (prāṇaapāna), work in the hands, motion in the feet, evacuation in the anus: these are the human recognitions [of Brahma as food].

Now the divine: satisfaction in rain, strength in lightning, (3) splendor in cattle, light in the stars, procreation immortality, and bliss in the generative organ, the all in space.

The worshiper thereof appropriates the object of his worship

One should worship It as a foundation; one [then] becomes possessed of a foundation.

One should worship It as greatness; one becomes great.

One should worship It as mind (manas); one becomes possessed of mindfulness.

(4) One should worship It as adoration; desires make adoration to one.

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One should worship It as magic formula (brahma); one becomes possessed of magic formula.

One should worship It as ‘the dying around the magic formula’ (brahmaṇaḥ parimara)1; around one die his hateful rivals, and those who are his unfriendly foes.2

The knower of the unity of the human person with the personality in the world attains unhampered desire

Both he who is here in a person and he who is yonder in the sun—he is one.

(5) He who knows this, on departing from this world, proceeding on to that self which consists of food, proceeding on to that self which consists of breath, proceeding on to that self which consists of mind, proceeding on to that self which consists of understanding, proceeding on to that self which consists of bliss, goes up and down these worlds, eating what he desires, assuming what form he desires. He sits singing this chant (sāman):—

A mystical rapture of the knower of the universal unity

    • Oh, wonderful! Oh, wonderful! Oh, wonderful!
    • (6) I am food! I am food! I am food!
    • I am a food-eater! I am a food-eater! I am a food-eater!
    • I am a fame-maker (śloka-kṛt)! I am a fame-maker! I am a fame-maker!
    • I am the first-born of the world-order (ṛta),3
    • Earlier than the gods, in the navel of immortality!
    • Who gives me away, he indeed has aided me!
    • I, who am food, eat the eater of food!
    • I have overcome the whole world!
    • He who knows this, has a brilliantly shining light.
    • Such is the mystic doctrine
    • (upaniṣad)!
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AITAREYA UPANISHAD

FIRST ADHYĀYA

First Khaṇḍa

The creation of the four worlds, of the cosmic person, and of cosmic powers by the primeval Self

1. In the beginning, Ātman (Self, Soul), verily, one only, was here1—no other blinking thing whatever. He bethought himself: ‘Let me now create worlds.’

2. He created these worlds: water (ambhas), light-rays (marīci), death (mara), the waters (ap). Yon is the water, above the heaven; the heaven is its support. The light-rays are the atmosphere; death, the earth; what is underneath, the waters.

3. He bethought himself: ‘Here now are worlds. Let me now create world-guardians.’ Right (eva) from the waters he drew forth and shaped (√mūrch) a person.

4. Upon him he brooded (abhi + √tap).

When he had been brooded upon, his mouth was separated out, egg-like; from the mouth, speech (vāc); from speech, Agni (Fire).

Nostrils were separated out; from the nostrils, breath (prāṇa); from breath, Vāyu (Wind).

Eyes were separated out; from the eyes, sight (cakṣus); from sight, Āditya (the Sun).

Ears were separated out; from the ears, hearing (śrotra); from hearing, the quarters of heaven.

Skin was separated out; from the skin, hairs; from the hairs, plants and trees.

A heart was separated out; from the heart, mind (manas); from mind, the moon.

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A navel was separated out; from the navel, the out-breath (apāna); from the out-breath, death (mṛtyu).

A virile member was separated out; from the virile member, semen; from the semen, water (ap).

Second Khaṇḍa

The ingredience of the cosmic powers in the human person

1. These divinities, having been created, fell headlong in this great restless sea.1 He visited it with hunger and thirst.

They [i.e. the divinities] said to him: ‘Find out for us an abode wherein we may be established and may eat food.’

2. He led up a bull to them. They said: ‘Verily, this is not sufficient for us.’

He led up a horse to them. They said: ‘Verily, this is not sufficient for us.’

3. He led up a person to them. They said: ‘Oh! well done!’—Verily, a person is a thing well done.—

He said to them: ‘Enter into your respective abodes.’

4. Fire became speech, and entered the mouth.

Wind became breath, and entered the nostrils.

The sun became sight, and entered the eyes.

The quarters of heaven became hearing, and entered the ears.

Plants and trees became hairs, and entered the skin.

The moon became mind, and entered the heart.

Death became the out-breath (apāna), and entered the navel.

Waters became semen, and entered the virile member.

5. Hunger and thirst said to him [i.e. Ātman]: ‘For us two also2 find out [an abode].’

Unto the two he said: ‘I assign you two a part among these divinities. I make you two partakers among them.’ Therefore to whatever divinity an oblation is made, hunger and thirst become partakers in it.

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Third Khaṇḍa

The creation of food of fleeting material form, and the inability of various personal functions to obtain it

1. He bethought himself: ‘Here now are worlds and world-guardians. Let me create food for them.’

2. He brooded upon the waters. From them, when they had been brooded upon, a material form (mūrti) was produced. Verily, that material form which was produced—verily, that is food.

3. Having been created, it sought to flee away.

He sought to seize it with speech. He was not able to grasp it with speech. If indeed he had grasped it with speech, merely with uttering food one would have been satisfied.

4. He sought to grasp it with breath. He was not able to grasp it with breath. If indeed he had grasped it with breath, merely with breathing toward food one would have been satisfied.

5. He sought to grasp it with sight. He was not able to grasp it with sight. If indeed he had grasped it with sight, merely with seeing food one would have been satisfied.

6. He sought to grasp it with hearing. He was not able to grasp it with hearing. If indeed he had grasped it with hearing, merely with hearing food one would have been satisfied.

7. He sought to grasp it with the skin. He was not able to grasp it with the skin. If indeed he had grasped it with the skin, merely with touching food one would have been satisfied.

8. He sought to grasp it with the mind. He was not able to grasp it with the mind. If indeed he had grasped it with the mind, merely with thinking on food one would have been satisfied.

9. He sought to grasp it with the virile member. He was not able to grasp it with the virile member. If indeed he had grasped it with the virile member, merely with emitting food one would have been satisfied.

10. He sought to grasp it with the out-breath (apāna—the Edition: current; Page: [297] digestive breath). He consumed1 it. This grasper of food is what wind (vāyu) is. This one living on food (annāyu), verily, is what wind is.

The entrance of the Self into the body

11. He [i. e. Ātman] bethought himself: ‘How now could this thing exist without me?’

He bethought himself: ‘With which should I enter?’

He bethought himself: ‘If with speech there is uttered, if with breath (prāṇa) there is breathed, if with sight there is seen, if with hearing there is heard, if with the skin there is touched, if with the mind there is thought, if with the out-breath (apāna) there is breathed out, if with the virile member there is emitted, then who am I?’

12. So, cleaving asunder this very2 hair-part (sīman),3 by that door he entered. This is the door named ‘the cleft’ (vidṛti). That is the delighting (nāndana).

He has three dwelling-places, three conditions of sleep. This is a dwelling-place. This is a dwelling-place. This is a dwelling-place.4

The mystic name of the sole self-existent Self

13. Having been born, he looked around on beings (bhūta), [thinking]: ‘Of what here would one desire to speak5 as Edition: current; Page: [298] another?’ He saw this very person as veriest (tatama) Brahma. ‘I have seen It (idam adarśa),’ said he (iti).

14. Therefore his name is Idaṁ-dra (‘It-seeing’). Idaṁ-dra, verily, is his name. Him who is Idaṁ-dra they call ‘Indra’ cryptically, for the gods are fond of the cryptic (parokṣa-priya), as it were1—for the gods are fond of the cryptic, as it were.

SECOND ADHYĀYA

Fourth Khaṇḍa

A self’s three successive births

1. In a person (puruṣa), verily, this one2 becomes at first an embryo (garbha). That which is semen (retas), is the vigor (tejas) come together from all the limbs. In the self, indeed, one bears a self. When he pours this in a woman, then he begets it. This is one’s first birth.3

2. It comes into self-becoming (ātma-bhūya) with the woman, Edition: current; Page: [299] just as a limb of her own. Therefore it injures her not. She nourishes this self of his that has come to her.

3. She, being a nourisher, should be nourished. The woman bears him as an embryo. In the beginning, indeed, he nourishes the child [and] from birth onward. While1 he nourishes the child from birth onward, he thus nourishes his own self, for the continuation of these worlds; for thus are these worlds continued. This is one’s second birth.

4. This self of one is put in one’s place for pious deeds (puṇya karman). Then this other self of one, having done his work (kṛta-kṛtya), having reached his age, deceases. So, deceasing hence indeed, he is born again. This is one’s third birth. As to this it has been said by a seer:—

  • 5. Being yet in embryo, I knew well2
  • All the births of these gods!
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  • A hundred iron citadels confined me,
  • And yet,1 a hawk (śyena) with swiftness, forth I flew!

In embryo indeed thus lying (śayāna), Vāmadeva spoke in this wise.

6. So he, knowing this, having ascended aloft from this separation from the body (śarīra-bheda), obtained all desires in the heavenly world (svarga loka), and became immortal—yea, became [immortal]!

THIRD ADHYĀYA

Fifth Khaṇḍa

The pantheistic Self

1. [Question:] Who is this one?2

[Answer:] We worship him as the Self (Ātman).

[Question:] Which one3 is the Self?

[Answer:] [He] whereby one sees,4 or whereby one hears,5 or whereby one smells odors, or whereby one articulates speech, or whereby one discriminates the sweet and the unsweet; [2] that which is heart (hṛdaya) and mind (manas)—that is, consciousness (saṁjñāna), perception (ājñāna), discrimination (vijñāna), intelligence (prajñāna), wisdom (medhas), insight (dṛṣṭi), steadfastness (dhṛti), thought (mati), thoughtfulness (manīṣā), impulse (jūti), memory (smṛti), conception (saṁkalpa), purpose (kratu), life (asu), desire (kāma), will (vaśa).

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All these indeed, are appellations of intelligence (prajñāna).

3. He is Brahma; he is Indra; he is Prajāpati; [he is] all these gods; and these five gross elements (mahā-bhūtāni), namely earth (pṛthivī), wind (vāyu), space (ākāśa), water (āpas), light (jyotīṁṣi); these things and those which are mingled of the fine (kṣudra), as it were; origins (bīja)1 of one sort and another: those born from an egg (aṇḍa-ja), and those born from a womb (jāru-ja), and those born from sweat (sveda-ja),2 and those born from a sprout (udbhij-ja); horses, cows, persons, elephants; whatever breathing thing there is here—whether moving or flying, and what is stationary.

All this is guided by intelligence, is based on intelligence. The world is guided by intelligence. The basis is intelligence. Brahma is intelligence.

4. So he [i. e. Vāmadeva], having ascended aloft from this world with that intelligent Self (Ātman), obtained all desires in yon heavenly world, and became immortal—yea, became [immortal]!

Thus (iti)! Om!

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KAUSHĪTAKI UPANISHAD1

FIRST ADHYĀYA
The course of reincarnation, and its termination through metaphysical knowledge2

Citra and Śvetaketu concerning the path to the conclusion of reincarnation

1. Citra Gāṅgyāyani,3 verily, being about to sacrifice, chose Āruṇi.4 He then dispatched his son Śvetaketu, saying: ‘You perform the sacrifice.’ When he had arrived,5 he asked of him: ‘Son of Gautama,6 is there a conclusion [of transmigration] in the world in which you will put me? Or is there any road? Will you put me in its world?’

Then he said: ‘I know not this. However, let me ask the teacher.’ Then he went to his father and asked: ‘Thus and so has he asked me. How should I answer?’

Then he said: ‘I too know not this. Let us pursue Veda-study (svādhyāya) at [his] residence, and get what our betters give. Come! Let us both go.’

Then, fuel in hand, he returned to Citra Gāṅgyāyani, and said: ‘Let me come to you as a pupil.’

To him then he said: ‘Worthy of sacred knowledge (brahma) are you, O Gautama, who have gone not unto conceit. Come! I will cause you to understand.’

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The testing at the moon; thence either return to earth, or further progress

2. Then he said: ‘Those who, verily, depart from this world—to the moon, in truth, they all go. During the earlier half it thrives on their breathing spirits (prāṇa); with the latter half1 it causes them to be reproduced. This, verily, is the door of the heavenly world—that is, the moon. Whoever answers it, him it lets go further. But whoever answers it not, him, having become rain, it rains down here. Either as a worm, or as a moth, or as a fish, or as a bird, or as a lion, or as a wild boar,2 or as a snake, or as a tiger, or as a person, or as some other in this or that condition, he is born again here according to his deeds (karman), according to his knowledge.

When he comes thither it asks him: ‘Who are you?’

He should reply:

  • ‘From the far-shining,3 O ye seasons, has semen been gathered,
  • From the fifteenfold produced,3 from the realm of the fathers.3
  • As such send ye me in a man as an agent.
  • With the man as an agent in a mother infuse me.

So am I born, being born forth4 as the twelfth or thirteenth succeeding month, by means of a twelve- or thirteen-fold father.5 For the knowledge of this was I—for the knowledge of the opposite of this.6 So bring ye my seasons on to Edition: current; Page: [304] immortality. By this truth, by this austerity I am a season, I am connected with the seasons. Who am I? I am you.’

It lets him go further.

The course to the Brahma-world

3. Having entered upon this Devayāna (‘Leading-to-the-gods’) path, he comes to the world of Agni (Fire), then to the world of Vāyu (Wind), then to the world of Varuṇa,1 then to the world of Indra, then to the world of Prajāpati, then to the world of Brahma. This Brahma-world, verily, has the lake Āra, the moments Yeshṭiha, the river Vijarā (‘Ageless’), the tree Ilya, the city Sālajya, the abode Aparājita (‘Unconquered’), the two door-keepers Indra and Prajāpati, the hall Vibhu (‘Extensive’), the throne Vicakshaṇā (‘Far-shining’), the couch Amitaujas (‘Of Unmeasured Splendor’), and the beloved Mānasī (‘Mental’), and her counterpart Cākshushī (‘Visual’), both of whom, taking flowers, verily weave the worlds, and the Apsarases (Nymphs), Ambās (‘Mothers’) and Ambāyavīs (‘Nurses’), and the rivers Ambayā (‘Little Mothers’). To it comes he who knows this. To him Brahma says: ‘Run ye to him! With my glory, verily, he has reached the river Vijarā (‘Ageless’). He, verily, will not grow old.’

The knower’s triumphal progress through the Brahma-world

4. Unto him there go forth five hundred Apsarases, one hundred with fruits in their hands, one hundred with ointments in their hands, one hundred with garlands in their hands, one hundred with vestments in their hands, one hundred with powdered aromatics in their hands. They adorn him with the adornment of Brahma. He, having been adorned with the adornment of Brahma, a knower of Brahma, unto Brahma goes on. He comes to the lake Āra. This he crosses with his mind. On coming to it, those who know only the immediate, sink. He comes to the moments Yeshṭiha. These run away from him. He comes to the river Vijarā (‘Ageless’). This he crosses with his mind alone (eva). There he shakes off his Edition: current; Page: [305] good deeds and his evil deeds. His dear relatives succeed to the good deeds; those not dear, to the evil deeds. Then, just as one driving a chariot looks down upon the two chariot-wheels, thus he looks down upon day and night, thus upon good deeds and evil deeds, and upon all the pairs of opposites. This one, devoid of good deeds, devoid of evil deeds, a knower of Brahma, unto very Brahma goes on.

Approaching unto the very throne of Brahma

5. He comes to the tree Ilya; the fragrance of Brahma enters into him.

He comes to the city Sālajya; the flavor of Brahma enters into him.

He comes to the abode Aparājita (‘Unconquered’); the brilliancy of Brahma enters into him.

He comes to the two door-keepers, Indra and Prajāpati; these two run away from him.

He comes to the hall Vibhu (‘Extensive’); the glory of Brahma enters into him.

He comes to the throne Vicakshaṇā (‘Far-shining’).1 The Bṛihad and the Rathantara Sāmans are its two fore feet; the Śyaita and the Naudhasa, the two hind feet; the Vairūpa and the Vairāja, the two lengthwise pieces; the Śākvara and Raivata, the two cross ones. It is Intelligence (prajñā), for by intelligence one discerns.

He comes to the couch Amitaujas (‘Of Unmeasured Splendor’); this is the breathing spirit (prāṇa). The past and the future are its two fore feet; prosperity and refreshment, the two hind feet; the Bhadra and Yajñāyajñīya [Sāmans], the two head pieces; the Bṛihad and the Rathantara, the two lengthwise pieces; the verses (ṛc) and the chants (sāman), the cords stretched lengthwise; the sacrificial formulas (yajus), the cross ones; the Soma-stems, the spread; the Udgītha, the bolster (upaśrī); prosperity, the pillow. Thereon Brahmā sits. He who knows this, ascends it with one foot only (eva) at first. Edition: current; Page: [306] Him Brahmā asks, ‘Who are you?’ To him he should answer:—

Essential identity with the infinite Real

6. ‘I am a season. I am connected with the seasons. From space as a womb I am produced as the semen for a wife,1 as the brilliance of the year, as the soul (ātman) of every single being. You are the soul of every single being. What you are, this am I.’

  • To him he says: ‘Who am I?’
  • He should say: ‘The Real.’
  • ‘What is that, namely the Real (satyam)?’

‘Whatever is other than the sense-organs (deva) and the vital breaths (prāṇa)—that is the actual (sat). But as for the sense-organs and the vital breaths—that is the yon (tyam). This is expressed by this word “satyam” (‘the Real’). It is as extensive as this world-all. You are this world-all.’

Thus he speaks to him then. This very thing is declared by a Rig[-Veda] verse:—

Apprehension of It through the Sacred Word and through all the functions of a person; the knower’s universal possession

7. Having the Yajus as his belly, having the Sāman as his head,

Having the Rig as his form, yonder Imperishable

‘Is Brahma!’ Thus is he to be discerned—

The great seer, consisting of the Sacred Word (brahma-maya).2

He says to him: ‘Wherewith do you acquire (√āp) my masculine names?’

‘With the vital breath (prāṇa, masc.),’ he should answer.

‘Wherewith feminine names?’3

‘With speech (vāc, fem.).’

‘Wherewith neuter ones?’3

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‘With the mind (manas, neut.).’

‘Wherewith odors?’

‘With the breath (prāṇa1).’

‘Wherewith forms?’

‘With the eye.’

‘Wherewith sounds?’

‘With the ear.’

‘Wherewith the flavors of food?’

‘With the tongue.’

‘Wherewith actions?’

‘With the two hands.’

‘Wherewith pleasure and pain?’

‘With the body.’

‘Wherewith bliss, delight, and procreation?’

‘With the generative organ.’

‘Wherewith goings?’

‘With the two feet.’

‘Wherewith thoughts, what is to be understood, and desires?’

‘With intelligence (prajñā),’ he should say.

To him he says: ‘The [primeval] waters [and also: Acquisitions],2 verily, indeed, are my world. It is yours.’

Whatever conquest is Brahma’s, whatever attainment—that conquest he conquers, that attainment he attains who knows this—yea, who knows this!

SECOND ADHYĀYA
The doctrine of Prāṇa, together with certain ceremonies

Identity with Brahma; its value in service and security to oneself

1. ‘The breathing spirit (prāṇa) is Brahma’—thus indeed was Kaushītaki wont to say.

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Of this same breathing spirit as Brahma, verily, indeed, the mind (manas) is the messenger; the eye, the watchman; the ear, the announcer; speech, the handmaid.1

He who, verily, indeed, knows the mind as the messenger of this breathing spirit, [i. e.] of Brahma, becomes possessed of a messenger; he who knows the eye as the watchman, becomes possessed of a watchman; he who knows the ear as the announcer, becomes possessed of an announcer; he who knows speech as the handmaid, becomes possessed of a handmaid.2

To this same breathing spirit as Brahma, verily, all these divinities without his begging bring offering. Likewise, indeed, to this same breathing spirit all beings without his begging bring offering.

Of him who knows this, the secret doctrine (upaniṣad) is: ‘One should not beg.’ It is as if, having begged of a village and not having received, one were to sit down,3 saying: ‘I would not eat anything given from here!’ and then those very ones who formerly refused him invite him, saying: ‘Let us give to you!’ Such is the virtue (dharma) of the non-beggar.4 Charitable people, however, address him, saying: ‘Let us give to you!’

2. ‘The breathing spirit (prāṇa) is Brahma’—thus, indeed, was Paiṅgya wont to say.

Of this same breathing spirit as Brahma, verily, off behind the speech the eye is enclosed; off behind the eye the ear is enclosed; off behind the ear the mind is enclosed; off behind the mind the breathing spirit is enclosed.

To this same breathing spirit as Brahma, verily, all these Edition: current; Page: [309] divinities without his begging bring offering. Likewise indeed, to him all beings without his begging bring offering.

Of him who knows this, the secret doctrine (upaniṣad) is: ‘One should not beg.’ It is as if, having begged of a village and not having received, one were to sit down, saying: ‘I would not eat anything given from here!’ and then those very ones who formerly refused him invite him, saying: ‘Let us give to you!’ Such is the virtue of the non-beggar.1 Charitable people, however, address him, saying: ‘Let us give to you!’

3 (2). Now next, the procuring of a special prize.—

In case one should covet a special prize—either on the night of a full moon or on the night of a new moon, or during the bright half of the moon under an auspicious constellation—at one of these points of time,2 having built up a fire, having swept around, having sprinkled around, having purified,3 having bent the right knee, with a spoon (sruva) or with a wooden bowl (camasa) or with a metal cup (kaṁsa),4 he offers these oblations of melted butter:—

‘The divinity named Speech is a procurer. May it procure this thing for me from so-and-so! To it, hail (svāhā)!

The divinity named Breath (prāṇa) is a procurer. May it procure this thing for me from so-and-so! To it, hail!

The divinity named Eye is a procurer. May it procure this thing for me from so-and-so! To it, hail!

The divinity named Ear is a procurer. May it procure this thing for me from so-and-so! To it, hail!

The divinity named Mind is a procurer. May it procure this thing for me from so-and-so! To it, hail!

The divinity named Intelligence is a procurer. May it procure this thing for me from so-and-so! To it, hail!’

Then having sniffed the smell of the smoke, having rubbed his limbs over with a smearing of the melted butter, silently he should go forth5 and declare his object, or despatch a messenger. He obtains indeed.

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To win another’s affection

4 (3). Now next, longing in connection with the divine powers1 (daiva smara).—

If one should desire to become beloved of a man, or of a woman, or of men, or of women—at one of these same [aforementioned] points of time, having built up a fire,2 he in the same manner offers these oblations of melted butter:—

  • ‘Your Speech I sacrifice in me, you so-and-so! Hail!
  • Your Breath I sacrifice in me, you so-and-so! Hail!
  • Your Eye I sacrifice in me, you so-and-so! Hail!
  • Your Ear I sacrifice in me, you so-and-so! Hail!
  • Your Mind I sacrifice in me, you so-and-so! Hail!
  • Your Intelligence I sacrifice in me, you so-and-so! Hail!’

Then, having sniffed the smell of the smoke, having rubbed his limbs over with a smearing of the melted butter, silently he should go forth and desire to approach and touch, or he may simply stand and converse from windward. He becomes beloved indeed. They long for him indeed.

The perpetual sacrifice of self

5 (4). Now next, the matter of self-restraint (sāṁyamana) according to Pratardana, or the ‘Inner Agnihotra Sacrifice,’ as they call it.—

As long, verily, as a person is speaking, he is not able to breathe. Then he is sacrificing breath (prāṇa) in speech.

As long, verily, as a person is breathing, he is not able to speak. Then he is sacrificing speech (vāc) in breath.

These two are unending, immortal oblations; whether waking or sleeping, one is sacrificing continuously, uninterruptedly.3 Now, whatever other oblations there are, they are limited, for they consist of works (karma-maya). Knowing this very thing, verily, indeed, the ancients did not sacrifice the Agnihotra sacrifice.

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Glorification of the Uktha1

6. ‘The Uktha (Recitation) is brahma (sacred word)’—thus indeed was Śushkabṛiṅgāra wont to say.

One should reverence it as the Rig (Hymn of Praise); unto such a one indeed all beings sing praise (ṛc) for his supremacy.

One should reverence it as the Yajus (Sacrificial Formula); unto such a one indeed all beings are united (yujyante) for his supremacy.

One should reverence it as the Sāman (Chant); unto such a one indeed all beings bow down (saṁnamante) for his supremacy.

One should reverence it as beauty (śrī).

One should reverence it as glory (yaśas).

One should reverence it as brilliancy (tejas).

As this [i.e. the Uktha] is the most beautiful, the most glorious, the most brilliant among the Śastras (Invocations of Praise)—even so is he who knows this, the most beautiful, the most glorious, the most brilliant among all beings.

So the Adhvaryu priest prepares (saṁskaroti) this soul (ātman) that is related to the sacrifice,2 that consists of works. On it he weaves what consists of the Yajus. On what consists of the Yajus the Hotṛi priest weaves what consists of the Rig. On what consists of the Rig the Udgātṛi priest weaves what consists of the Sāman. This is the soul of all the threefold knowledge. And thus he who knows this, becomes the soul of Indra.3

Daily adoration of the sun for the removal of sin

7 (5). Now next are the all-conquering Kaushītaki’s three adorations:—

The all-conquering Kaushītaki indeed was wont to4 worship the rising sun—having performed the investiture with the sacred Edition: current; Page: [312] thread (yajñopavītaṁ),1 having sipped2 water, thrice having sprinkled the water-vessel—saying: ‘Thou art a snatcher! Snatch my sin (pāpman)!’

In the same manner [he was wont to worship the sun] when it was in the mid-heaven: ‘Thou art a snatcher-up! Snatch up my sin!’

In the same manner [he was wont to worship the sun] when it was setting: ‘Thou art a snatcher-away! Snatch away my sin!’

Whatever evil (pāpa) he committed by day or night, it snatches away.3

Likewise also he who knows this, worships the sun in the same manner.3 Whatever evil one commits by day or night, it snatches away.

Regular adoration of the new moon for prosperity

8. Now, month by month on the night of the new moon when it comes around4 one should, in the same manner, worship the moon as it appears in the west; or he casts two blades of green grass5 toward it, saying:—

  • ‘That heart of mine of contour fair (susīma)
  • Which in the moon in heaven rests—
  • I ween myself aware of that!
  • May I not weep for children’s ill!’6
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In advance of such a one, indeed, his progeny decease not.

—Thus in the case of one to whom a son has been born.

Now in the case of one to whom a son has not been born.—

  • ‘Be thou swelled forth. Let enter thee . . .’1
  • ‘In thee let juices, powers also gather . . .’2
  • ‘The stalk that the Ādityas cause to swell forth . . .’3

Having muttered these three sacred verses (ṛc), he says: ‘Cause not thyself to swell forth with our vital breath, progeny, cattle! He who hates us and him whom we hate—cause thyself to swell forth with his vital breath, progeny, cattle!4

Thereupon I turn myself with Indra’s turn5; I turn myself along with the turn of the sun.’

Thereupon he turns himself toward the right arm.

9 (6). Now, on the night of the full moon one should, in the same manner, worship the moon as it appears in the east, saying:—

‘Thou art King Soma. Thou art the Far-shining, the Five-mouthed, Prajāpati (Lord of Creation).

The Brahman (brāhmaṇa) is one mouth of thee. With that mouth thou eatest the kings. With that mouth make me an eater of food.

The king (rājan) is one mouth of thee. With that mouth Edition: current; Page: [314] thou eatest the people (viś). With that mouth make me an eater of food.

The hawk is one mouth of thee. With that mouth thou eatest the birds. With that mouth make me an eater of food.

Fire is one mouth of thee. With that mouth thou eatest the world. With that mouth make me an eater of food.

In thee is a fifth mouth. With that mouth thou eatest all beings. With that mouth make me an eater of food.

Waste not thou away with our vital breath, progeny, cattle! He who hates us and him whom we hate—waste thou away with his vital breath, progeny, cattle!

Thereupon I turn myself with the turn of the gods1; I turn myself along with the turn of the sun.’

Thereupon he turns himself toward the right arm.

A prayer in connection with wife and children

10. Now, when about to lie down with a wife, one should touch her heart, and say:—

  • ‘That which in thy heart, O [dame] with fair-parted hair,
  • Is placed—