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:

पुष्पमूलफलैर्वाऽपि केवलैर्वर्तयेत् सदा ।
कालपक्वैः स्वयं शीर्णैर्वैखानसमते स्थितः ॥ २१ ॥

puṣpamūlaphalairvā'pi kevalairvartayet sadā |
kālapakvaiḥ svayaṃ śīrṇairvaikhānasamate sthitaḥ || 21 ||

Or, he may always subsist only on flowers, roots and fruits, which have ripened in their own season and fallen down spontaneously,—keeping firm in the ways of life prescribed in the ‘Vaikhānasa’ Institutes.—(21).


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

Ripened in their own season’.—The jack-fruit and some other fruits are ripened (artificially) by means of fire also; and it is with a view to exclude these that this epithet has been added. But fruits ripened by means of fire are not forbidden for the Householder.

Vaikhānasa’ is the name of a treatise where the duties of the Hermit are prescribed;—keeping firm on these rules;—i.e. he should seek to learn also the other details of life prescribed in that treatise.—(21).


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

Vaikhānasamate sthitaḥ’—This refers to the ‘Vaikhānasa-śāstra says Medhātithi. The Vaikhānasa-sūtra (Trivandrum Sanskrit Series) is the work most likely referred to.


Comparative notes by various authors

Bodhāyana (3.2.11, etc., seq.).—(See under 18.)

Āpastamba (2.23.2).—‘Afterwards, he shall wander about, sustaining his life with roots, fruits, leaves and grass.

Finally he shall content himself with what has become detached spontaneously. Then he shall live on water, then on air, then on Ākāṣha.’

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