Chandogya Upanishad (english Translation)

by Swami Lokeswarananda | 165,421 words | ISBN-10: 8185843910 | ISBN-13: 9788185843919

This is the English translation of the Chandogya-upanishad, including a commentary based on Swami Lokeswarananda’s weekly discourses; incorporating extracts from Shankara’s bhasya. The Chandogya Upanishad is a major Hindu philosophical text incorporated in the Sama Veda, and dealing with meditation and Brahman. This edition includes the Sanskrit t...

Verse 6.10.2

एवमेव खलु सोम्येमाः सर्वाः प्रजाः सत आगम्य न विदुः सत आगच्छामह इति त इह व्याघ्रो वा सिंहो वा वृको वा वराहो वा कीटो वा पतङ्गो वा दंशो वा मशको वा यद्यद्भवन्ति तदाभवन्ति ॥ ६.१०.२ ॥

evameva khalu somyemāḥ sarvāḥ prajāḥ sata āgamya na viduḥ sata āgacchāmaha iti ta iha vyāghro vā siṃho vā vṛko vā varāho vā kīṭo vā pataṅgo vā daṃśo vā maśako vā yadyadbhavanti tadābhavanti || 6.10.2 ||

2.—In the same way, O Somya, all these beings, having come from Sat [Brahman], never know this. They never think, ‘We have come from Sat.’ Whatever they were before in this world—whether a tiger or lion or leopard or boar or bug or insect or flea or mosquito—they are born again [according to their karma. They never know that they came from Sat].

Word-for-word explanation:

Evam eva khalu, in the same way; somya, O Somya; imāḥ sarvāḥ prajāḥ, all these beings; sataḥ, from Sat [Brahman]; āgamya, having come; sataḥ āgacchāmahe iti, we have come from Sat; na viduḥ, do not know; te, these [beings]; iha, here [in this world]; vyāghraḥ, a tiger; siṃhaḥ, or a lion; vṛkaḥ, or a leopard; varāhaḥ, or a boar; kīṭaḥ vā, or a bug; pataṅgaḥ, or an insect; daṃśaḥ, or a flea; maśakaḥ, or a mosquito; yatyat, whatever; bhavanti, they are [before]; tat, that; ābhavanti, they are after [because they do not yet know the Self].


The Upaniṣad does not mean to imply in this example of the rivers that we are not divine now and we are trying to become divine. No, we are always divine. Whether we know it or not, we are never separate from pure Spirit. But it is our misfortune that we do not know it.

Here the Upaniṣad is giving us a warning. Our goal is Self-knowledge. Death or deep sleep is not our goal.