Manusmriti with the Commentary of Medhatithi

by Ganganatha Jha | 1920 | 1,381,940 words | ISBN-10: 8120811550

This is the English translation of the Manusmriti, which is a collection of Sanskrit verses dealing with ‘Dharma’, a collective name for human purpose, their duties and the law. Various topics will be dealt with, but this volume of the series includes 12 discourses (adhyaya). The commentary on this text by Medhatithi elaborately explains various t...

Sanskrit text, Unicode transliteration and English translation by Ganganath Jha:

यः कश्चित् कस्य चिद् धर्मो मनुना परिकीर्तितः ।
स सर्वोऽभिहितो वेदे सर्वज्ञानमयो हि सः ॥ ७ ॥

yaḥ kaścit kasya cid dharmo manunā parikīrtitaḥ |
sa sarvo'bhihito vede sarvajñānamayo hi saḥ || 7 ||

Whatever Dharma for whatever person has been described by Manu,—all this is declared in the Veda; since the Veda embodies all knowledge.—(7)


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

This verse proceeds to make it clear how the authority of the Smṛti (Recollection) is due to its connection with persons knowing the Veda.

Whatever Dharma’—duties relating to castes, duties relating to life-stages, duties relating to sacramental rites, in their general or special forms—‘for whatever person’—for the Brāhmaṇa or other castes—‘has been described by Manu’—‘all this is declared in the Veda’—i.e., is expounded in it; how this is done has been shown in the preceding verse.

Since the Veda embodies all knowledge’;—Veda is the cause, the source, of all that is worth knowing, in regard to superphysical things. The affix ‘mayaṭ’ has been added in the sense that the Veda is made up of all knowledge; applying to ‘knowledge’ the character of being the product of the Veda. When one thing is the produot of another, the latter is spoken of as ‘embodying’ the former, i.e., of the same nature as the other; and Veda, being the source of knowledge, is said to ‘embody’ it. According to the Sāṅkhya theory of the Product being always existent in the Cause, the Cause is of the same nature as the Product.

Or, the meaning may be that ‘the Veda proceeds from all knowledge’ as its source; the ‘mayaṭ’ affix in this sense being used according to Pāṇini’s Sūtra 4.3.81.—(7)


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

This verse is quoted in Hemādri (Śrāddha, p. 20.7.)


Comparative notes by various authors

Taittirīya-Saṃhitā, 2-2-6.2.—‘Whatever Manu has said is wholesome.’

Parāśara-Smṛti, 1.21.—‘During each Kalpa Manu declares the Dharmas.’

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