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:

एवं यः सर्वभूतानि ब्राह्मणो नित्यमर्चति ।
स गच्छति परं स्थानं तेजोमूर्तिः पथार्जुना ॥ ९३ ॥

evaṃ yaḥ sarvabhūtāni brāhmaṇo nityamarcati |
sa gacchati paraṃ sthānaṃ tejomūrtiḥ pathārjunā || 93 ||

The Brāhmaṇa who thus daily honours all beings, becomes endowed with a body of light, and goes to the highest place, by the straight path.—(93)


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

This sums up what has gone before.

The epithet ‘all’ indicates that one should help with food the deer, the cock, the cat and such other animals as grow in the villages.

Honour’ here denotes help, not worship; us worship could not apply to dogs, &c. In fact, what is meant is the forbidding of ill-treatment; and it in with this view that the author has not used the term ‘help.’

Highest place’—i.e., he reaches Brahman.

By the straight path’—i.e., he has not to wander through an endless series of births as different animals.

Question—“Is this verse meant to lay down the reward (to be obtained)?”

We say—no. For it has already been explained that the injunction of the offerings is an obligatory one; and if a reward happen to be mentioned in connection with an obligatory act, it can only be taken as a commendatory description. Nor is any injunctive word found in the verse; the word used is ‘goes,’ in the present tense.

With a body of light’—i.e., with a body made up of light only; he is no longer tramelled with a body made up of the five elemental substances; i.e., he becomes of the nature of pure Consciousness. Or, the term may be takeu as connoting freedom from sin; the meaning being that he becomes pure of character. The act done is one of helping all beings; and when the man does not transgress any scriptural injunctions, he incurs no sin; and hence it is only right that he should be pure. If it were otherwise, then sin being an impurity, he could never have a body of light. There being no sin in him, it is only natural that the man should reach the highest place, which consists in a state free from all pain and suffering.—(93)


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

Tejomūrtiḥ’—‘Endowed with the body of light,’ qualifying the ‘Brāhmaṇa’ (Medhātithi);—Kullūka reads ‘tejomūrti’ (neuter) and explains it as ‘resplendent’, qualifying the ‘place’.

This verse is quoted in Vīramitrodaya (Āhnika, p. 403), where it is noted that the use of the word ‘archati’, ‘honours’, is meant to imply that even the making of offerings to crows and others should not be accompanied by a feeling of disrespect, or contempt.—‘Patharjunā’ is to be construed as ‘ṛjunā pathā’.


Comparative notes by various authors

(verses 3.84-93)

See Comparative notes for Verse 3.84.

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