Kena Upanishad with Shankara’s Commentary

by S. Sitarama Sastri | 1905 | 13,003 words

The Kena Upanishad is a collection of philosophical poems discussing the attributes of Brahman: the unchanging, infinite universal spirit. Brahman is further proposed as the cause for all the forces of nature, symbolized as Gods. This commentary by Shankara focuses on ‘Advaita Vedanta’, or non-dualism: one of the classical orthodox philosophies o...

verse 15

तद्धैषां विजज्ञौ तेभ्यो ह प्रादुर्बभूव तन्न व्यजानत किमिदं यक्षमिति ॥ १५ ॥

taddhaiṣāṃ vijajñau tebhyo ha prādurbabhūva tanna vyajānata kimidaṃ yakṣamiti || 15 ||

15. He knew this notion of theirs and appeared before them. What that Great Spirit was they did not know.


Shankara’s Commentary:

Com.—The Brahman evidently knew this false notion of theirs. Brahman being omniscient and director of the senses of all living beings knew of the false idea of the Devas and in order that the Devas might not be disgraced like the Asuras by this false notion, out of pity for them and intending to bless them hy dispelling their false notion, appeared before them for their benefit in a form assumed at will, in virtue of its power—a form unprecedentedly glorious and astonishing and capable of being perceived by the senses. The Devas did not at all know the Brahman that appeared before them. Who is this Yaksham, i.e., this venerable Great Spirit.

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