by Hermann Oldenberg | 1886 | 27,910 words

The Grihya-sutra of Paraskara, which belongs to the White Yajurveda and forms an appendix to Katyayana's Shrauta-sutra, has been edited, with a German translation. Alternative titles: Pāraskara-gṛhya-sūtra (पारस्कर-गृह्य-सूत्र), Grhya, Pāraskaragṛhyasūtra (पारस्करगृह्यसूत्र), Paraskaragrihyasutra, Paraskaragrhyasutra....

Adhyāya II, Kaṇḍikā 17

1[1]. Now (follows) the sacrifice to Sītā.

2. Wherever he sacrifices, be it (on a field) of rice or of barley, of that grain he should prepare a mess of cooked food.

3[2]. One who has sacrificed may, if he likes, prepare elsewhere also a mess of cooked food, either of rice or of barley.

4[3]. (There should be) no doubt (as to whether rice or barley is to be taken), as a rule thereon has been stated above.

5. If it is impossible (to take one of the two species of corn), (that) is excluded.

6. To the east or to the north of the field, on a clean spot that has been ploughed, so that the crop he not damaged,

7. Or in the village, because (there) both (rice and barley) are united, and because no obstacle is there.

8. Where he intends to cook (the sacrificial food), he establishes the fire on a place that has been smeared (with cowdung), which is elevated, and which has been sprinkled (with water), strews (round the fire) Darbha grass mixed with (stalks of) that (sort of corn to which the sacrifice refers), sacrifices the two Ājya portions and Ājya oblations (with the following Mantras):

9. 'For whom earth and heaven, the intermediate points and the chief points (of the horizon) are veiled with light, that Indra I invoke here. May his weapons be friendly towards us. Svāhā!

'Whatsoever it be that I wish for at this sacrifice, O killer of Vṛtra, may all that be fulfilled to me, and may I live a hundred autumns. Svāhā!

'May success, prosperity, earth, rain, eminence, excellence, luck here protect the creatures. Svāhā!

'In whose substance dwells the prosperity of all Vedic and worldly works, Indra's wife Sītā I invoke. May she not abandon me in whatever work I do. Svāhā!

Her, who rich in horses, rich in cows, rich in delight indefatigably supports living beings, Urvarā (i.e. the field) who is wreathed with threshing-floors, I invoke at this sacrifice, the firm One. May she not abandon me. Svāhā!

10. He makes oblations of the cooked sacrificial food to Sītā, Yajā (the goddess of sacrifice), Śamā (the goddess of zealous devotion), Bhūti (the goddess of welfare).

11. Some say that the giving (of the sacrificial food to the deities) accompanies the Mantras.

12[4]. But this is excluded, as the Śruti says, 'The giving (of the oblation to the deity) accompanies the word Svāhā.'

13. On the Kuśa grass which is left over from the strewing (of grass round the fire), he offers a Bali to the protecting demons of the furrow with (the Mantra), 'They who are sitting towards the east with strong bows and quivers, may they protect thee from the east, and be vigilant and not abandon thee. To them I bring adoration, and I offer this Bali to them.'

14[5]. Then to the south with (the Mantra), 'They who are sitting towards the south, not winking the eyes, wearing armour, may they protect thee from the south, and be vigilant and not abandon thee. To them I bring adoration, and I offer this Bali to them.'

15[6]. Then to the west with (the Mantra), 'The powerful ones, the excellent ones, prosperity, earth, Pārṣṇi, Śunaṃkuri, may they protect thee from the west, and be vigilant and not abandon thee. To them I bring adoration, and I offer this Bali to them.'

16. Then to the north with (the Mantra), 'The fearful ones, like to Vāyu in speed, may they protect thee from the north, on the field, on the threshing-floor, in the house, on the way, and be vigilant and not abandon thee. To them I bring adoration, and I offer this Bali to them.'

17[7]. Of another (sort of food) as the chief (food used at this sacrifice), and with the remainder of Ājya, he distributes Balis as above.

18. And the women should make accompanying oblations, because such is the custom.

19. When the ceremony is finished, he should feed the Brāhmaṇas. He should feed the Brāhmaṇas.

End of the Second Kāṇḍa.

Footnotes and references:


17, 1. The goddess Sītā is, as her name indicates, the rustic deity of the furrow.


Perhaps the meaning is that a person who has already once performed the Sītā-yajña on the field, is allowed, when repeating the sacrifice another time, to celebrate it elsewhere, and to choose at his will between rice and barley.


A rule has been given in the Śrauta-sūtra (Kāty. I, 9, 1: 'Rice or barley, if a Havis [is prescribed]') which shows that it is indifferent whether rice or barley is taken. Thus the sacrificer is free to elect the one or the other. At least this is the traditional meaning of this Sūtra. But possibly we had better understand it otherwise. The sacrificer should offer, according to Sūtra 3, rice or barley. Whether he has to take the one or the other, there can be no doubt, as the rule given above (Sūtra 2) shows that rice should be cooked, if the ceremony is performed for a rice-field, and barley, if for a barley-field.


The quotation has not been as yet identified in the Śruti itself, but the words quoted are found in Kāty.-Śraut. I, 2, 7.


Some words in the beginning of the Mantra are lost. We should probably write: atha dakṣiṇataḥ. ye dakṣiṇatonimiṣāḥ . . . varmiṇa āsate, &c. Of course it is impossible to say which is the word that is wanting before (or perhaps after) varmiṇaḥ.


Pārṣṇi, which means 'heel,' stands here, of course, as the name of a protecting demon.


See above, chap. 13, 2.

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