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:

अप्रयत्नः सुखार्थेषु ब्रह्मचारी धराऽऽशयः ।
शरणेष्वममश्चैव वृक्षमूलनिकेतनः ॥ २६ ॥

aprayatnaḥ sukhārtheṣu brahmacārī dharā''śayaḥ |
śaraṇeṣvamamaścaiva vṛkṣamūlaniketanaḥ || 26 ||

Making no effort to obtain pleasure-giving objects, and maintaining celibacy, he shall sleep on the ground; and not caring for shelter, he shall have the roots of trees for his dwelling.—(26).


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

He shall make no effort to obtain things that give pleasure; e.g., troubled by heat, he shall not move into the shade, and troubled by cold, he shall not kindle fire. If, however, his sufferings are removed by such natural causes as the falling of the sun’s rays and the like,—this is not forbidden. This rule refers to seasons other than the rains; because special rules have been prescribed with special reference to this latter Reason.

Or, the text may be taken as prohibiting the use of medicines by the hermit if he happen to fall ill,—being cured of disease also being a kind of ‘pleasure;’ hence he shall not make any effort to secure this pleasure.

Sleeping on the ground’;—i.e., he shall sleep on the ground, covered only with grass.

Shelter’— dwelling-places, such as houses, tree-roots and so forth;—for these he shall not care; he shall not have any hankering after the possession of these.

He shall make the roots of trees his dwelling. In the event of their being not available, stone-slabs, mountain-caves and such places have also been ordained for him.—(26).


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

The first half of this verse is quoted in Parāśaramādhava (Ācāra, p. 531).


Comparative notes by various authors

Vaśiṣṭha (9.5.11).—‘He shall remain celibate. He shall live at the roots of a tree.’

Viṣṇu (94.7).—‘He must preserve his celibacy.’

Yājñavalkya (3.45).—(See under 1.)

Yājñavalkya (3.51).—(See under 22.)

Do. (3.5.4).—(See under 25.)

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