The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad
The Bṛhadāraṇyaka Upaniṣad (with the Commentary of Śaṅkarācārya)
Section III - The Prana: Its Glories and Redeeming Power
How is this section related to the preceding one? The highest result of rites combined with meditation has been indicated by a statement of the result of the horse sacrifice, viz. identity with Death or Hiranṇya-garbha. Now the present section, devoted to the Udgītha, is introduced in order to indicate the source of rites and meditation, which are the means of attaining identity with Death.
Objection: In the previous section the result of rites and meditation has been stated to be identity with Death. But here the result of rites and meditation on the Udgītha will be stated to be the transcendence of identity with death. Hence, the results being different, this section cannot be meant to indicate the source of the rites and meditation that have been dealt with in the previous section.
Reply: The objection does not hold, for the result of meditation on the Udgītha is identity with fire and the sun. In the previous section too this very result was mentioned, ‘He becomes one with these deities' (I. ii. 7).
Objection: Do not such statements as, ‘Having transcended death,’ etc. (I. iii. 12-16) clash with what has been said before?
Reply: No, for here the transcendence is of the natural attachment to evil (not of Hiraṇyagarbha). What is this natural attachment to evil, called death? What is its source? By what means is it transcended? And how?—these are the things which are sought to be explained by the following allegory:
द्वया ह प्राजापत्याः, देवाश्चासुराश्च । ततः कानीयसा एव देवाः, ज्यायसा असुराः; त एषु
लोकेष्वस्पर्धन्त; ते ह देवा ऊचुः, हन्तासुरान्यज्ञ उद्गीथेनात्ययामेति ॥ १ ॥
dvayā ha prājāpatyāḥ, devāścāsurāśca | tataḥ kānīyasā eva devāḥ, jyāyasā asurāḥ; ta eṣu
lokeṣvaspardhanta; te ha devā ūcuḥ, hantāsurānyajña udgīthenātyayāmeti || 1 ||
1. There were two classes of Prajāpati's sons, the gods and the Asuras. Naturally, the gods were fewer, and the Asuras more in number. They vied with each other for (the mastery of) these worlds. The gods said, ‘Now let us surpass the Asuras in (this) sacrifice through the Udgītha.’
There were two classes: ‘Two’ here means two classes. The particle ‘ha’ is an expletive referring to a past incident. It is here used to recall what happened in the past life of the present Prajāpati. Of Prajāpati’s sons, in his past incarnation. Who are they? The gods and the Asuras, the organs, that of speech and the rest, of Prajāpati himself. How can they be the gods and Asuras? They become gods when they shine under the influence of thoughts and actions as taught by the scriptures. While those very organs become Asuras when they are influenced by their natural thoughts and actions, based only on perception and inference, and directed merely to visible (secular) ends. They are called Asuras, because they delight only in their own lives (Asu) or because they are other than the gods (Sura). And because the Asuras are influenced by thoughts and actions directed to visible ends, therefore the gods were fewer, and the Asuras more in number.—The lengthened form of the two adjectives due to the addition of a vowel augment makes no change of meaning.—The organs, as we know, have a stronger tendency to thoughts and actions that are natural, than to those that are recommended by the scriptures, for the former serve visible ends. Hence the gods are fewer, for the tendency that is cultivated by the scriptures is rare; it is attainable with great effort. They, the gods and the Asuras living in Prajāpati’s body, vied with each other for (the mastery of) these worlds, which are attainable through thoughts and actions prompted by one’s natural inclinations as well as those cultivated by the scriptures. The rivalry of the gods and the Asuras here means the emergence and subsidence of their respective tendencies. Sometimes the organs manifest the impressions of thoughts and actions cultivated by the scriptures; and when this happens, the impressions, manifested by those very organs, of the thoughts and actions based on perception and inference, and producing visible results only— those tendencies characteristic of the Asuras—subside. That is the victory of the gods and the defeat of the Asuras. Sometimes the reverse happens. The characteristic tendencies of the gods are overpowered, and those of the Asuras emerge. That is the victory of the Asuras and the defeat of the gods. Accordingly, when the gods win, there is a preponderance of merit, and the result is elevation up to the status of Prajāpati. And when the Asuras triumph, demerit prevails, and the result is degradation down to the level of stationary objects, while if there be a draw, it leads to human birth.
What did the gods do when, being fewer, they were overwhelmed by the Asuras who outnumbered them? The gods, being overwhelmed by the Asuras, said to one another, ‘Now let us surpass the 4 suras in this sacrifice, Jyotiṣṭoma, through the Udgītha „ that is, through identity with (the vital force), the chanter of this accessory of a sacrifice called the Udgītha. By overcoming the Asuras we shall realise our divinity as set forth in the scriptures.’ This identity with the vital force is attained through meditation and rites. The rites consist of the repetition of Mantras that will be presently enjoined: ‘These Mantras are to be repeated,’ etc. (I. iii. 28). The meditation is what is being described.
Objection: This is a part of an injunction on the repetition of certain Mantras leading to the attainment of divinity, and is a mere eulogy; it has nothing to do with meditation.
Reply: No, for there occur the words, ‘He who knows thus.’
Objection: Since the text narrates an old story in this treatment of the Udgītha, it must be a part of an injunction on the latter.
Reply: No, for it is a different context. The Udgītha has been enjoined elsewhere (in the ceremonial portion), and this is a section on knowledge. Besides, the repetition of those Mantras for the attainment of identity with the gods is not an independent act, for it is to be practised (only) by one who meditates on the vital force as described in this section, and this meditation on the vital force is represented as being independent. And a separate result is mentioned for it in the passage, ‘This (meditation on the vital force) certainly wins the world’ (I. iii. 28). Moreover, the vital force has been stated to be pure, and the organs impure. This implies that the vital force is enjoined as an object of meditation, for otherwise there would be no sense in calling it pure and the organs such as that of speech, mentioned along with it, impure, nor in extolling it, as is evident, by the condemnation of the organ of speech, etc. The same remarks apply to the enunciation of the result of meditation on it, ‘(That fire) having transcended death shines,’ etc. (I. iii. 12). For the identification of the organ of speech etc. with fire and so on is the result of attaining oneness with the vital force.
Objection: Granted that the vital force is to be meditated upon, but it cannot possess the attributes of purity etc.
Reply: It must, for the Śruti says so.
Objection: No, for the vital force being an object of meditation, the attributes referred to may just be a eulogy.
Reply: Not so, for in scriptural, as in secular matters, correct understanding alone can lead to our well-being. In common life one who understands things correctly attains what is good or avoids what iö evil—not if one understands things wrongly. Similarly here also one can attain well-being if only one correctly understands the meaning of scriptural passages, and not otherwise. Besides there is nothing to disprove the truth of objects corresponding to notions conveyed by the words of the scriptures enjoining a meditation. Nor is there any exception in the Śrutis to meditation on the vital force as pure etc. Since that meditation, we see, is conducive to our wellbeing, we accept it as true. And we see that the opposite course leads to evil. We notice in life that one who misjudges things—takes a man, for instance, for a stump, or an enemy for a friend—comes to grief. Similarly, if the Self, God, the deities and so forth, of whom we hear from the scriptures, prove fictitious, then the scriptures, like secular things, would be a veritable source of evil; but this is acceptable to neither of us. Therefore we conclude that the scriptures present, for purposes of meditation, the Self, God, the deities and so on, as real.
Objection: What you say is wrong, for the name and other things are represented as Brahman. That is to say, the name and other things are obviously not Brahman, but the scriptures, we find, ask us, in direct opposition to fact, to look upon them as Brahman, which is analogous to regarding a stump etc. as a man. Hence it is not correct to say that one attains wellbeing by understanding things as they are from the scriptures.
Reply: Not so, for the difference is obvious, as in the case of an image. You are wrong to say that the scriptures ask us, in the face of fact, to look upon the name and other things, which are not Brahman, as Brahman, analogous to regarding a stump etc. as a man.
Reply: Because the scriptures enjoin meditation on the name etc. as Brahman for one who clearly knows that those things are different from Brahman; it is like meditation on the image etc. as Viṣṇu. Just like the image etc., the name and other things are used merely as aids to meditation; it is not meant that they are Brahman. So long as one does not know a stump as a stump, one mistakes it for a man. But meditation on the name etc. as Brahman is not of that erroneous nature.
Objection. There is only that meditation on the name etc. as Brahman, but no Brahman. Regarding an image as Viṣṇu and other gods, and a Brāhmaṇa as the Manes and so forth belongs to the same category.
Reply: No, for we are advised to look upon the Ṛc (hymn) etc. as the earth and so on. Here we see only a superimposition on the Ṛc etc. of the notions of actually existing things such as the earth. Therefore on the analogy of that we conclude that viewing the name etc. as Brahman and so forth is based on actually existing Brahman and the rest. This also proves that viewing an image as Viṣṇu and other gods, and a Brāhmaṇa as the Manes and so forth, has a basis in reality. Moreover, a figurative sense depends on a primary one. Since the five fires, for instance, are only figuratively such, they imply the existence of the real fire. Similarly, since the name apd other things are Brahman only in a figurative sense, they merely prove that Brahman in a real sense must exist.
Besides, matters pertaining to knowledge are akin to those pertaining to rites. That rites like the new and full moon sacrifices produce such and such results, and have to be performed in a certain definite way, with their parts following each other in a particular order, is a supersensuous matter beyond the range of our perception and inference, which we nevertheless understand as true solely from the words of the Vedas. Similarly it stands to reason that entities like the Supreme Self, God, the deities, etc., of which we learn, also from the words of the Vedas, as being characterised by the absence of grossness etc., being beyond hunger and the like, and so on, must be true, for they are equally supersensuous matters. There is no difference between texts relating to knowledge and those relating to rites as regards producing an impression. Nor is the impression conveyed by the Vedas regarding the Supreme Self and other such entities indefinite or contrary to fact.
Objection: Not so, for there is nothing to be done. To be explicit: The ritualistic passages mention an activity which, although relating to supersensuous matters, consist of three parts to be performed. But in the knowledge of the Supreme Self, God, etc., there is no such activity to be performed. Hence it is not correct to say that both kinds of passages are alike.
Reply: Not so, for knowledge is of things that already exist. The activity to which you refer is real, not because it is to be performed, but because it is known through proper testimony (the Vedas). Nor is the notion concerning it real because it relates to something to be performed, but solely because it is conveyed by Vedic sentences. When a thing has been known to be true from the Vedas, a person will perform it, should it admit of being performed, but will not do it if it is not a thing to be done.
Objection: If it is not something to be done, then it will cease to have the support of Vedic testimony in the form of sentences. We do not understand how words in a sentence can be construed unless there is something to be done. But if there is something to be done, they are construed as bringing out that idea. A sentence is authoritative when it is devoted to an action—when it says that a certain thing is to be done through such and such means in a particular way. But hundreds of such words denoting the object, means and method would not make a sentence unless there is one or other of such terms as the following, ‘Should do, should be done, is to be done, should become and should be.’ Hence such entities as the Supreme Self and God have not the support of Vedic testimony in the form of sentences. And if they are denoted by Vedic words (instead of sentences), they become the objects of other means of knowledge. Therefore this (the fact of Brahman being the import of the Vedas) is wrong.
Reply: Not so, for we find sentences like, ‘There is Mt. Meru, which is of four colours,’ which relate to things other than an action. Nor has anyone, on hearing such sentences, the idea that Meru and the rest are something to be done. Similarly, in a sentence containing the verb 'to be,’ what is there to prevent the construing of its words denoting the Supreme Self, God, etc., as substantives and their qualifying words?
Objection: This is not correct, for the knowledge of the Supreme Self etc: serves no useful purpose like that of Meru and so forth.
Reply: Not so, for the Śruti mentions such results as, ‘The knower of Brahman attains the highest’ (Tai. II. i. i), and ‘The knot of the heart (intellect) is broken,’ etc. (Mu. II. ii. 8). We also fìnd the cessation of ignorance and other evils which are the root of relative existence. Besides, since the knowledge of Brahman does not form part of anything else (e.g. an action), the results rehearsed about it cannot be a mere eulogy as in the case of the sacrificial ladle.
Moreover, it is from the Vedas that we know that a forbidden act produces evil results; and it is not something to be done. A man who is about to do a forbidden act has (on recollecting that it is forbidden) nothing else to do except desisting from it. In fact, prohibitions have just that end in view, viz. to create an idea that the acts in question must not be done. When a hungry man who has been chastened by a knowledge of prohibited acts comes across something not to be eaten in any way, such as Kalañja (the meat of an animal killed with a poisoned weapon), or food coming from a person under a curse, his first notion is that the food can be eaten, but it is checked by the recollection that it is a forbidden food, as one's first notion that one can drink from a mirage is checked by the knowledge of its true nature. When that natural erroneous notion is checked, the dangerous impulse to eat that food is gone. That impulse, being due to an erroneous notion, automatically stops; it does not require an additional effort to stop it. Therefore prohibitions have just the aim of communicating the real nature of a thing; there is not the least connection of human activity with them. Similarly here also, the injunction on the true nature of the Supreme Self etc. cannot but have that one aim. And a man who has been chastened by that knowledge knows that his impulses due to an erroneous notion are fraught with danger, and those natural impulses automatically stop when their cause, the false notion, has been exploded by the recollection of the true nature of the Supreme Self and the like.
Objection: Granted that the dangerous impulse to eat Kalañja and the like may stop when the natural erroneous notion about their edibility has been removed by the recollection of their true nature as harmful things; but the tendency to do acts enjoined by the scriptures should not stop in that way, for they are not prohibited.
Reply: Not so, for both are due to erroneous notions and produce harmful effects. Just as the tendency to eat Kalañja etc. is due to a false notion and productive of harm, so is the tendency to do acts enjoined by the scriptures. Therefore, for a man who has a true knowledge of the Supreme Self, the tendency to do these acts, being equally due to a false notion and productive of harm, will naturally cease when that false notion has been removed by the knowledge of the Supreme Self.
Objection: Let it be so with regard to those acts (which are done for material ends), but the regular rites, which are performed solely in obedience to the scriptures and produce no harmful effects, should on no account stop.
Reply: Not so, for they are enjoined on one who has defects such as ignorance, attachment and aversion. As the rites with material ends (Kāmya)^ such as the new and full moon sacrifices are enjoined on one who has the defect of desiring heaven etc., so are the regular rites enjoined on one who has the root of all evils, ignorance etc., and the consequent defects of attachment and aversion, manifesting themselves as the quest of what is good and the avoidance of what is evil, etc., and who being equally prompted by these tries to seek good and avoid evil; they are not performed solely in obedience to the scriptures. Nor are rites such as the Agnihotra, the new and full moon sacrifices, Cāturmāsya, Paśubandha and Somayāga intrinsically either rites with material ends or regular rites. They come under the former category only because the man who performs them has the defect of desiring heaven and so forth. Similarly the regular rites performed by a man who has the defects of ignorance etc., and who out of natural promptings seeks to attain what is good and avoid what is evil, are intended for that purpose alone, for they are enjoined on him. On one who knows the true nature of the Supreme Self, we do not find any other work enjoined except what leads to the cessation of activities. For Self-knowledge is inculcated through the obliteration of the very cause of rites, viz. the consciousness of all its means such as the gods. And one whose consciousness of action, its factors and so forth has been obliterated cannot presumably have the tendency to perform rites, for this presupposes a knowledge of specific actions, their means and so on. One who thinks that he is Brahman unlimited by space, time, etc., and not-gross and so on, has certainly no room for the performance of rites.
Objection: He may, as he has for the inclination to eat and so on.
Reply: No, for the inclination to eat and so on is solely due to the defects of ignorance etc., and are not supposed to be compulsory. But the regular rites cannot be uncertain like that; they cannot be sometimes done and sometimes omitted (according to one's whim). Acts like eating, however, may be irregular, as they are solely due to one’s defects, and these have no fixed time for appearing or disappearing, like desires for rites with material ends. But the regular rites, although they are due to defects, cannot be uncertain, for they depend on specific times etc. prescribed by the scriptures, just as the Kāmya Agnihotra (which is a rite with material ends) depends on such conditions as the morning and evening, because it is enjoined by the scriptures.
Objection: As the inclination to eat etc. (although due to defects) is regulated by the scriptures, so the restrictions about that Agnihotra too may apply to the sage.
Reply: No, for restrictions are not action, nor are they incentives to action. Hence they are not. obstacles to the attainment of knowledge (even by an aspirant). Therefore the Vedic dicta inculcating the true nature of the Supreme Self, because they remove the erroneous notions about Its being gross, dual and so on, automatically assume the character of prohibitions of all action, for both imply a cessation of the tendency to action. As is the case with prohibited acts (such as the eating of forbidden food). Hence we conclude that like the prohibitions, the Vedas delineate the nature of realities and have that ultimate aim.
ते ह वाचमूचुः, त्वं न उद्गायेति; तथेति, तेभ्यो वागुदगायत् । यो वाचि भोगस्तं देवेभ्य आगायत्, यत्कल्याणं वदति तदात्मने । ते विदुरनेन वै न उद्गात्रात्येष्यन्तीति, तमभिद्रुत्य पाप्मनाविध्यन्; स यः स पाप्मा, यदेवेदमप्रतिरूपं वदति स एव स पाप्मा ॥ २ ॥
te ha vācamūcuḥ, tvaṃ na udgāyeti; tatheti, tebhyo vāgudagāyat | yo vāci bhogastaṃ devebhya āgāyat, yatkalyāṇaṃ vadati tadātmane | te viduranena vai na udgātrātyeṣyantīti, tamabhidrutya pāpmanāvidhyan; sa yaḥ sa pāpmā, yadevedamapratirūpaṃ vadati sa eva sa pāpmā || 2 ||
2. They said to the organ of speech, ‘Chant (the Udgītha) for us.’ ‘All right,’ said the organ of speech and chanted for them. The common good that comes of the organ of speech, it secured for the gods by chanting, while the fine speaking it utilised for itself. The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and struck it with evil. That evil is what we come across when one speaks improper things.
They, the gods, after deciding thus, said to the organ of speech, i.e. the deity identified with the organ, ‘Chant (the Udgītha), or perform the function of the priest called Udgātṛ, for us.’ That is, they thought that this function belonged to the deity of the organ of speech, and that it was the deity referred to by the Mantra for repetition, ‘From evil lead me to good’ (I. iii. 28). Here the organ of speech and the rest are spoken of as the agents of meditation and work. Why? Because in reality all our activities in the field of meditation and work are done by them and belong to them. That they are not done by the Self will be stated at length in the fourth chapter, in the passage, ‘It thinks, as it were, and shakes, as it were,’ etc. (IV. iii. 7). Here too, at the end of the chapter it will be concluded that the whole universe of action, its factors and its results, beginning with the Undifferentiated, comes within the category of ignorance: ‘This (universe) indeed consists of these three: name, form and action’ (I. vi. i). And the Supreme Self, which is beyond the Undifferentiated, does not consist of name, form and action, and is the subject-matter of knowledge, will be concluded separately by the denial of things other than the Self with the words, ‘Not this, not this.’ While the transmigrating self, which is conjured up by the limiting adjunct (Upādhi) of the aggregate of the organ of speech etc., will be shown as falling under the category of that aggregate in the passage, ‘(The Self) comes out (as a separate entity) from these elements, and (this separateness) is destroyed with them’ (II. iv. 12; IV. v. 13). Therefore it is but proper to speak of the organ of speech etc. as being the agents of meditation and work and receiving their fruits.
‘All right, so be it,’ said the organ of speech, when requested by the gods, and chanted for them, for the sake of the gods who wanted it done. What was the particular effect of the chanting done, by the organ of speech for the sake of the gods? This is being stated: It is the common good of all the organs that comes through the instrumentality of the organ of speech, on account of the activities of speaking etc., for this is the fruit shared by all of them. That it secured for the gods by chanting the three hymns called Pavamāna. While the result produced by chanting the remaining nine, which, as we know from the scriptures, accrues to the priest— the fine or articulated speaking—it utilised for itself. Perfect enunciation of syllables is the special function of the deity of speech; hence that is specified by the expression, ‘fine speaking.’ While the effect of speaking that helps the body and organs in general belongs to the sacrificer as his share. Now, finding a loophole in the attachment of the deity in utilising its power of fine speaking for itself, the Asuras knew — what?—that through this chanter the gods would surpass them, overcome the natural thoughts and actions by the light of those acquired through the scriptures, as represented by the chanter. Knowing this they charged it, the chanter, and struck, i.e. touched, it with evil, their own attachment. That evil which was injected into the vocal organ of Prajāpati in his former incarnation, is visible even to-day. What is it? What we come across when one speaks improper things, or what is forbidden by the scriptures; it is that which prompts one to speak, even against one’s wishes, what is inelegant, dreadful, false and so on. That it still persists in the vocal organ of people who have descended from Prajāpati is inferred from this effect of improper speaking. This evil that is so inferred is the one that got into the vocal organ of Prajāpati, for an effect conforms to its cause.
अथ ह प्राणमूचुः, त्वं न उद्गायेति; तथेति, तेभ्यः प्राण उदगायत्; यः प्राणे भोगस्तं देवेभ्य आगायत्, यत् कल्याणं जिघ्रति तदात्मने । ते विदुरनेन वै न उद्गात्रात्येष्यन्त्ῑति, तमभिद्रुत्य पाप्मनाविध्यन्; स यः स पाप्मा, यदेवेदमप्रतिरूपं जिघ्रति स एव स पाप्मा ॥ ३ ॥
atha ha prāṇamūcuḥ, tvaṃ na udgāyeti; tatheti, tebhyaḥ prāṇa udagāyat; yaḥ prāṇe bhogastaṃ devebhya āgāyat, yat kalyāṇaṃ jighrati tadātmane | te viduranena vai na udgātrātyeṣyantῑti, tamabhidrutya pāpmanāvidhyan; sa yaḥ sa pāpmā, yadevedamapratirūpaṃ jighrati sa eva sa pāpmā || 3 ||
3. Then they said to the nose ‘Chant (the Udgītha) for us.’ ‘All right,’ said the eye and chanted for them. The common good that comes of the nose, it secured for the gods by chanting, while the ñne smelling it utilised for itself. The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and struck it with evil. That evil is what we come across when one smells improper things.
अथ ह चक्षुरूचुः, त्वं न उद्गायेति, तथेति, तेभ्यश्चक्षुरुदगायत् । यश्चक्षुषि भोगस्तं देवेभ्य आगायत्, यत् कल्याणं पश्यति तदात्मने । ते विदुरनेन वै न उद्गात्रात्येष्यन्तीति, तमभिद्रुत्य पाप्मनाविध्यन्; स यः स पाप्मा, यदेवेदमप्रतिरूपम् पश्यति स एव स पाप्मा ॥ ४ ॥
atha ha cakṣurūcuḥ, tvaṃ na udgāyeti, tatheti, tebhyaścakṣurudagāyat | yaścakṣuṣi bhogastaṃ devebhya āgāyat, yat kalyāṇaṃ paśyati tadātmane | te viduranena vai na udgātrātyeṣyantīti, tamabhidrutya pāpmanāvidhyan; sa yaḥ sa pāpmā, yadevedamapratirūpam paśyati sa eva sa pāpmā || 4 ||
4. Then they said to the eye, ' Chant (the Udgītha) for us.’ ‘All right,’ said the eye and chanted for them. The common good that comes of the eye, it secured for the gods by chanting, while the fine seeing it utilised for itself. The •Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and struck it with evil. That evil is what we come across when one sees improper things.
अथ ह श्रोत्रमूचुः, त्वं न उद्गायेइति; तथेति, तेभ्यः श्रोत्रमुदगायत्; यः श्रोत्रे भोगस्तं देवेभ्य आगायत्, यत्कल्याणं शृणोति तदात्मने । ते विदुरनेन वै न उद्गात्रात्येष्यन्त्ῑति, तमभिद्रुत्य पाप्मनाविध्यन्; स यः स पाप्मा, यदेवेदमप्रतिरूपं शृणोति स एव स पाप्मा ॥ ५ ॥
atha ha śrotramūcuḥ, tvaṃ na udgāyeiti; tatheti, tebhyaḥ śrotramudagāyat; yaḥ śrotre bhogastaṃ devebhya āgāyat, yatkalyāṇaṃ śṛṇoti tadātmane | te viduranena vai na udgātrātyeṣyantῑti, tamabhidrutya pāpmanāvidhyan; sa yaḥ sa pāpmā, yadevedamapratirūpaṃ śṛṇoti sa eva sa pāpmā || 5 ||
5. Then they said to the ear, ‘Chant (the Udgītha) for us.’ ‘All right,’ said the ear and chanted for them. The common good that comes of the ear, it secured for the gods by chanting, while the fine hearing it utilised for itself. The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and struck it with evil. That evil is what we come across when one hears improper things.
अथ ह मन ऊचुः, त्वं न उद्गायेति; तथेति, तेभ्यो मन उदगायत्; यो मनसि भोगस्तं देवेभ्य आगायत्, यत् कल्याणं संकल्पयति तदात्मने । ते विदुरनेन वै न उद्गात्रात्येष्यन्तीति, तमभिद्रुत्य पाप्मनाविध्यन्; स यः स पाप्मा यदेवेदमप्रतिरूपं संकल्पयति स एव स पाप्मा; एवमु खल्वेता देवताः पाप्मभिरुपासृजन्, एवमेनाः पाप्मनाविध्यन् ॥ ६ ॥
atha ha mana ūcuḥ, tvaṃ na udgāyeti; tatheti, tebhyo mana udagāyat; yo manasi bhogastaṃ devebhya āgāyat, yat kalyāṇaṃ saṃkalpayati tadātmane | te viduranena vai na udgātrātyeṣyantīti, tamabhidrutya pāpmanāvidhyan; sa yaḥ sa pāpmā yadevedamapratirūpaṃ saṃkalpayati sa eva sa pāpmā; evamu khalvetā devatāḥ pāpmabhirupāsṛjan, evamenāḥ pāpmanāvidhyan || 6 ||
6. Then they said to the mind, ‘Chant (the Udgītha) for us.’ ‘All right,’ said the mind and chanted for them. The common good that comes of the mind, it secured for the gods by chanting, while the fine thinking it utilised for itself. The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and struck it with evil. That evil is what we come across when one thinks improper things. Likewise they also touched these (other) deities with evil—struck them with evil.
Likewise they tried one by one the deities of the nose etc., thinking that they were each the deity referred to by the Mantra enjoined for repetition and were to be meditated upon, since they too chanted the Udgītha. And the gods came to this conclusion that the deities of the organ of speech and the rest, whom they tried one by one, were incapable of chanting the Udgītha, because they contracted evil from the Asuras owing to their attachment to utilising their power of doing fine performances for themselves. Hence none of them was the deity referred to by the Mantra, ‘From evil lead me to good,’ etc. (I. iii. 28), nor were they to be meditated upon, since they were impure and did not include the others. Likewise, just as in the case of the organ of speech etc., they also touched these (other) deities that have not been mentioned, the skin and the rest, with evil, that is to say, struck them with evil.
The gods, even after approaching one by one the deities of speech etc., were helpless as regards transcending death.
अथ हेममासन्यम् प्राणमूचुः, त्वं न उद्गायेति; तथेति, तेभ्य एष प्राण उदगायत्; ते विदुरनेन वै न उद्गात्रात्येष्यन्तीति, तमभिद्रुत्य पप्मनाविध्यन्; स यथाश्मानमृत्वा लोष्टो विध्वंसेत, एवं हैव विध्वंसमाना विष्वञ्चो विनेशुः, ततो देवा अभवन्, पराऽसुराः; भवत्यात्मना, परास्य द्विषन्भ्रातृव्यो भवति य एवं वेद ॥ ७ ॥
atha hemamāsanyam prāṇamūcuḥ, tvaṃ na udgāyeti; tatheti, tebhya eṣa prāṇa udagāyat; te viduranena vai na udgātrātyeṣyantīti, tamabhidrutya papmanāvidhyan; sa yathāśmānamṛtvā loṣṭo vidhvaṃseta, evaṃ haiva vidhvaṃsamānā viṣvañco vineśuḥ, tato devā abhavan, parā'surāḥ; bhavatyātmanā, parāsya dviṣanbhrātṛvyo bhavati ya evaṃ veda || 7 ||
7. Then they said to this vital force in the mouth, ‘Chant (the Udgītha) for us.’ ‘All right,’ said the vital force and chanted for them. The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and wanted to strike it with evil. But as a clod of earth, striking against a rock, is shattered, so were they shattered, flung in all directions, and perished. Therefore the gods became (fire etc.), and the Asuras were crushed. He who knows thus becomes his true self, and his envious kinsman is crushed.
Then they said to this —pointing it out—vital force in the mouth, having its seat in the oral cavity, ‘Chant (the Udgītha) for us.’ ‘All right,’ said the vital force to the gods who sought its protection, and chanted, etc. All this has been explained. The Asuras wanted to strike it, the vital force in the mouth, which was free from taint, with evil, the taint of their own attachment. Having succeeded with the organ of speech etc., they, through the persistence of that habit, desired to contaminate it too, but perished, were routed. How? This is being illustrated: As in life a clod of earth, striking against a rock, hurled at it with the intention of crushing it, is itself shattered or crushed to atoms, so were they shattered, flung in all directions, and perished. Because it so happened, therefore, owing to this destruction of the Asuras—i.e. dissociation from the evils due to natural attachment, which checked the manifestation of their divinity—by virtue of taking refuge in the vital force in the mouth, which is ever unattached, the gods, the organs that are under consideration, became —what?—their own divine selves, fire and so forth, to be mentioned later on. Formerly also they had been fire and so on, but with their knowledge covered by natural evil, they had identified themselves with the body alone. On the cessation of that evil they gave up their identification with the body; and the organ of speech and the rest realised their identity with fire and so on, as taught by the scriptures. And the Asuras, their enemies, were crushed.
The sacrificer of a past age who is mentioned in the story, coming across this Vedic allegory, tested in the same order the deity of speech and the rest, discarded them as stricken with the taint of attachment, identified himself with the taintless vital force in the mouth, and thereby giving up his limited identification with the body only, as represented by the organ of speech and the rest, identified himself with the body of Virāj, his present status of Prajāpati, which, as the scriptures say, represents the identification of the organ of speech etc. with fire and so on. Similarly the sacrificer of to-day, by the same procedure, becomes his true self, as Prajāpati. And his envious kinsman, the evil that opposes his attainment of the status of Prajāpati, is crushed. A kinsman is sometimes friendly, as, for instance, Bharata. But the evil due to attachment to sense-objects is an envious kinsman, for it hides one’s real nature as the Self. It is crushed like the clod of earth by one's union with the vital force. Who gets this result? He who knows thus, i.e. like the ancient sacriñcer realises his identity with the vital force described above.
Having finished with the result (of meditation on the vital force) the Śruti resumes its allegorical form and goes on. Why should the vital force in the mouth be resorted to as one’s self, to the exclusion of the organ of speech and the rest? To explain this by stating reasons, the Śruti points out through the story that it is because the vital force is the common self of the organ of speech etc. as well as of the body.
ते होचुः, क्व नु सोऽभूद्यो न इत्थमसक्तेति; अयमास्येऽन्तरिति; सोऽयास्य आङ्गिरसः, अङ्गानां हि रसः ॥ ८ ॥
te hocuḥ, kva nu so'bhūdyo na itthamasakteti; ayamāsye'ntariti; so'yāsya āṅgirasaḥ, aṅgānāṃ hi rasaḥ || 8 ||
8. They said, ‘Where was he who has thus restored us (to our divinity)?’ (and discovered): ‘Here he is within the mouth.’ The vital force is called Ayāsya Āṅgirasa, for it is the essence of the members (of the body).
They, the organs of Prajāpati, which were restored to their divinity by the vital force in the mouth, and thus attained their goal, said, ‘Where was he who has thus restored us to our divinity?’ The particle ‘nu’ indicates deliberation. People who have been helped by somebody generally remember their benefactor. The organs likewise remembered, and thinking on who it might be, realised the vital force within themselves, in the aggregate of body and organs. How? ‘Here he is within the mouth, is visibly present within the ether that is in the mouth.’ People decide after deliberation; so did the gods. Since the vital force was perceived by them as being present in the internal ether without assuming any particular form like that of the organ of speech etc., therefore the vital force is called Ayāsya. And since it did not assume any particular form, it restored the organ of speech etc. to their real status. Hence it is Āṅgirasa, the self of the body and organs. How? For it is, as is well-known, the essence, i.e. the self, of the members, i.e. of the body and organs. And how is it the essence of the members? Because, as we shall say later on, without it they dry up. Since, being the self of the members and not assuming any particular form, the vital force is the common self of the body and organs and pure, therefore it alone, to the exclusion of the organ of speech etc., should be resorted to as one's self—this is the import of the passage. For the Self alone should be realised as one’s self, since correct notions lead to well-being, and erroneous notions, as we find, lead to evil.
सा वा एषा देवता दूर्नाम, दूरं ह्यस्या मृत्युः; दूरं ह वा अस्मान्मृत्युर्भवति य एवं वेद ॥ ९ ॥
sā vā eṣā devatā dūrnāma, dūraṃ hyasyā mṛtyuḥ; dūraṃ ha vā asmānmṛtyurbhavati ya evaṃ veda || 9 ||
Objection: One may think that the purity of the vital force is not a proved fact.
Reply: Has this not been refuted by the state ment that the vital force is free from the attachment that the organ of speech and the rest betray by utilising their power of fine speaking etc. for themselves?
Objection: True, but since as Āṅgirasa it is spoken of as the self of the organ of speech etc., it may be impure through contact with the latter, just as one touched by another who has touched a corpse is impure.
Reply: No, the vital force is pure. Why? Because this deity is called Dūr. ‘This’ refers to the vital force, reaching which the Asuras were shattered like a clod of earth hitting a rock. It is the deity within the present sacrificer’s body whom the gods concluded as their saviour saying, ‘Here he is within the mouth.’ And the vital force may well be called a deity, being a part of the act of meditation as its object. Because the vital force is called Dūr, i.e. is well known as Dūr —to be ‘called’ is synonymous with being ‘celebrated as’—therefore its purity is well known, from this name of Dūr. Why is it called Dūr? Because Death, the evil of attachment, is jar from it, this deity, vital force. Death, although it is close to the vital force, is away from it, because the latter is ever unattached. Therefore the vital force is well-known as Dūr. Thus its purity is conspicuous. The results accruing to a knower of this are being stated: Death is far from one who knows thus, that is, who meditates upon the vital force endowed with purity, which is the topic of the section. Meditation is mentally approaching the form of the deity or the like as it is presented by the eulogistic portions of the Vedas relating to the objects of meditation, and concentrating on it, excluding conventional notions, till one is as completely identified with it as with one’s body, conventionally regarded as one’s self. Compare such Śruti passages as, ‘Being a god, he attains the gods’ (IV. i. 2), and ‘What deity are you identified with in the east?’ (III. ix. 20).
It has been stated, ‘This deity is called Dūr... Death is far from one who knows thus.’ How is death far from one who knows thus? Being incongruous with this knowledge. In other words, the evil due to the attachment of the organs to contact with the sense-objects is incongruous with one who identifies oneself with the vital force, for it is caused by the identification with particular things such as the organ of speech, and by one’s natural ignorance; while the identification with the vital force comes of obedience to the scriptures. Hence, owing to this incongruity, it is but proper that the evil should be far from one who knows thus. This is being pointed out:
सा वा एषा देवतैतासां देवतानाम् पाप्मानम् मृत्युमपहत्य यत्रासां दिशामन्तस्तद्गमयांचकार, तदासां पामनो विन्यदधात्; तस्मान्न जनमियात्, नान्तमियात्, नेत्पाप्मानम् मृत्युमन्ववायानीति ॥ १० ॥
sā vā eṣā devataitāsāṃ devatānām pāpmānam mṛtyumapahatya yatrāsāṃ diśāmantastadgamayāṃcakāra, tadāsāṃ pāmano vinyadadhāt; tasmānna janamiyāt, nāntamiyāt, netpāpmānam mṛtyumanvavāyānīti || 10 ||
10. This deity took away death, the evil of these gods, and carried it to where these quarters end. There it left their evils. Therefore one should not approach a person (of that region), nor go to that region beyond the border, lest one imbibe that evil, death.
This deity —already explained— took away death, the evil of these gods such as the god of speech, identified with the vital force. Everybody dies because of the evil due to the attachment of the organs to contact with the sense-objects, prompted by his natural ignorance. Hence this evil is death. The vital force is here spoken of as taking it away from the gods, simply because they identified themselves with the vital force. As a matter of fact, evil keeps away from this knower just because it is out of place there. What did the vital force do after taking away death, the evil of the gods? It carried it to where these quarters, east and so forth, end. One may question how this was done, since the quarters have no end. The answer is that it is all right, for the quarters are here conceived as being that stretch of territory which is inhabited by people possessing Vedic knowledge; hence ‘the end of the quarters’ means the country inhabited by people who hold opposite views, as a forest is spoken of as the end of the country. Carrying them, there it, the deity, vital force, left their evils, the evils of these gods.—The word ‘Pāpmanah’ is accusative plural.—‘Left,’ lit. placed in various humiliating ways, and, as is understood from the sense of the passage, among the inhabitants of that region beyond the border who do not identify themselves with the vital force. That evil is due to the contact of the senses (with their objects); hence it must reside in some living being. Therefore one should not approach, i.e. associate with by addressing or seeing, a person of the region beyond the border. Association with him would involve contact with evil, for it dwells in him. Nor go to that region beyond the border, where such people live, called ‘the end of the quarters,’ although it may be deserted; and the implication is, nor to any man out of that land. Lest one imbibe that evil, death, by coming into contact with such people. Out of this fear one should neither approach these people nor go to that region. ‘Ned’ (lest) is a particle denoting apprehension.
सा वा एषा देवतैतासां देवतानाम् पाप्मानम् मृत्युमपहत्याथैना मृत्युमत्यवहत् ॥ ११ ॥
sā vā eṣā devataitāsāṃ devatānām pāpmānam mṛtyumapahatyāthainā mṛtyumatyavahat || 11 ||
11.This deity after taking away death, the evil of these gods, next carried them beyond death.
Now the result of this act of meditation on the vital force as one's own self, viz. the identification of the organ of speech etc. with fire and so on, is being stated. This deity next carried them beyond death. Because death, or the evil that limits one to the body, is removed by the identification with the vital force, therefore the latter is the destroyer of the evil of death. Hence that vital force carried these gods, that of speech and the rest, beyond death, the evil which is being discussed, and made them realise their respective unlimited divine forms as fire and so on.
स वै वाचमेव प्रथमामत्यवहत्; सा यदा मृत्युमत्यमुच्यत सोऽग्निरभवत्; सोऽयमग्निः परेण मृत्युमतिक्रान्तो दीप्यते ॥ १२ ॥
sa vai vācameva prathamāmatyavahat; sā yadā mṛtyumatyamucyata so'gnirabhavat; so'yamagniḥ pareṇa mṛtyumatikrānto dīpyate || 12 ||
12. It carried the organ of speech, the foremost one, first. When the organ of speech got rid of death, it became fire. That fire, having transcended death, shines beyond its reach.
It, the vital force, carried the organ of speech, the foremost one, first. Its importance consists in being a better instrument in the chanting of the Udgītha than the other organs. What was its form after it was carried beyond death? When the organ of speech got rid of death, it became fire. Formerly also it was fire, and being dissociated from death it became fire itself, with only this difference: That fire, having transcended death, shines beyond its reach. Before its deliverance it was hampered by death and, as the organ of speech pertaining to the body, was not luminous as now; but now, being freed from death, it shines beyond its reach.
अथ प्राणमत्यवहत्; स यदा मृत्युमत्यमुच्यत स वायुरभवत्; सोऽयं वायुः परेण मृत्युमतिक्रान्तः पवते ॥ १३ ॥
atha prāṇamatyavahat; sa yadā mṛtyumatyamucyata sa vāyurabhavat; so'yaṃ vāyuḥ pareṇa mṛtyumatikrāntaḥ pavate || 13 ||
Similarly the nose became air. It, having transcended death, blows beyond its reach. The rest has been explained.
अथ चक्षुरत्यवहत्; तद्यदा मृत्युमत्यमुच्यत स आदित्योऽभवत्; सोऽसावादित्यः परेण मृत्युमतिक्रान्तस्तपति ॥ १४ ॥
atha cakṣuratyavahat; tadyadā mṛtyumatyamucyata sa ādityo'bhavat; so'sāvādityaḥ pareṇa mṛtyumatikrāntastapati || 14 ||
14. Then it carried the eye. When the eye got rid of death, it became the sun. That sun, having transcended death, shines beyond its reach.
Likewise the eye became the sun. He shines.
अथ श्रोत्रमत्यवहत्; तद्यदा मृत्युमत्यमुच्यत ता दिशोऽभवन्; ता इमा दिशः परेण मृत्युमतिक्रान्ताः ॥ १५ ॥
atha śrotramatyavahat; tadyadā mṛtyumatyamucyata tā diśo'bhavan; tā imā diśaḥ pareṇa mṛtyumatikrāntāḥ || 15 ||
15. Then it carried the ear. When the ear got rid of death, it became the quarters. Those quarters, having transcended death, remain beyond its reach.
Similarly the ear became the quarters. The quarters remain, divided into the east and so forth.
अथ मनोऽत्यवहत्; तद्यदा मृत्युमत्यमुच्यत स चन्द्रमा अभवत्; सोऽसौ चन्द्रः परेण मृत्युमतिक्रान्तो भाति; एवं ह वा एनमेषा देवता मृत्युमतिवहति य एवं वेद ॥ १६ ॥
atha mano'tyavahat; tadyadā mṛtyumatyamucyata sa candramā abhavat; so'sau candraḥ pareṇa mṛtyumatikrānto bhāti; evaṃ ha vā enameṣā devatā mṛtyumativahati ya evaṃ veda || 16 ||
16. Then it carried tlie mind. When the mind got rid of death, it became the moon. That moon, having transcended death, shines beyond its reach. So does this deity carry one who knows thus beyond death.
The mind became the moon and shines. As the vital force carried the ancient sacrificer beyond death by transforming the organ of speech etc. into fire and so on, so does this deity carry one, the sacrificer of to-day, who knows thus the vital force as including the five organs, that of speech etc. For the Śruti says, ‘One becomes exactly as one meditates upon Him’ (Ś. X. v. 2. 20).
अथात्मनेऽन्नाद्यमागायत्; यद्धि किंचान्नमद्यतेऽनेनैव तदद्यते, इह प्रतितिष्ठति ॥ १७ ॥
athātmane'nnādyamāgāyat; yaddhi kiṃcānnamadyate'nenaiva tadadyate, iha pratitiṣṭhati || 17 ||
17. Next it secured eatable food for itself by chanting, for whatever food is eaten, is eaten by the vital force alone, and it rests on that.
As the organ of speech and the rest had chanted for their own sake, so the vital force in the mouth, after securing, by chanting the three hymns called Pavamāna, the result to be shared by all the organs, viz. identity with Virāj, next secured eatable food for itself by chanting the remaining nine hymns. We have already said that according to the Vedas the priests get the results of a sacrifice. How do we know that the vital force secured that eatable food for itself by chanting? The resaon is being stated: For whatever food
—food in general is meant— is eaten by creatures in the world is eaten by the vital force (Ana) alone. The particle ‘hi’ (for) denotes a reason. ‘Ana’ is a well-known name of the vital force. There is another word ‘Anas’ ending in s, which means a cart, but this word ends in a vowel and is a synonym of the vital force. Besides, the vital force not only eats the eatable food, it also rests on that food, when it has been transformed into the body. Therefore the vital force secured the eatable food for itself by chanting, in order that it might live in the body. Although the vital force eats food, yet, because it is only in order that it might live in the body, there is no question of its contracting the evil due to attachment to fine performance, as was the case with the organ of speech and the rest.
ते देवा अब्रुवन्, एतावद्वा इदं सर्व यदन्नम्, तदात्मन आगासीः, अनु नोऽस्मिन्नन्न आभजस्वेति; ते वै माऽभिसंविशतेति; तथेति, तं समन्तम् परिण्यविशन्त । तस्माद्यदननेनान्नमत्ति तेनैतास्तृप्यन्ति; एवं ह वा एनं स्वा अभिसंविशन्ति, भर्ता स्वानां श्रेष्ठः पुर एता भवत्यन्नादोऽधिपतिर्य एवं वेद; य उ हैवंविदं स्वेषु प्रति प्रतिर्बुभूषति न हैवालं भार्येभ्यो भवति; अथ य एवैतमनु भवति, यो वैतमनु भार्यान्बुभूर्षति, स हैवालं भार्येभ्यो भवति ॥ १८ ॥
te devā abruvan, etāvadvā idaṃ sarva yadannam, tadātmana āgāsīḥ, anu no'sminnanna ābhajasveti; te vai mā'bhisaṃviśateti; tatheti, taṃ samantam pariṇyaviśanta | tasmādyadananenānnamatti tenaitāstṛpyanti; evaṃ ha vā enaṃ svā abhisaṃviśanti, bhartā svānāṃ śreṣṭhaḥ pura etā bhavatyannādo'dhipatirya evaṃ veda; ya u haivaṃvidaṃ sveṣu prati pratirbubhūṣati na haivālaṃ bhāryebhyo bhavati; atha ya evaitamanu bhavati, yo vaitamanu bhāryānbubhūrṣati, sa haivālaṃ bhāryebhyo bhavati || 18 ||
18. The gods said, ‘Whatever food there is, is just this much, and you have secured it for yourself by chanting. Now let us have a share in this food.’ ‘Then sit around facing me,’ (said the vital force). ‘All right,’ (said the gods and) sat down around it. Hence whatever food one eats through the vital force satisfies these. So do his relatives sit around facing him who knows thus, and he becomes their support, the greatest among them and their leader, a good eater of food and the ruler of them. That one among his relatives who desires to rival a man of such knowledge is powerless to support his dependants. But one who follows him, or desires to maintain one’s dependants being under him, is alone capable of supporting them.
Is it not wrong to assert that all food ‘is eaten by the vital force alone,’ since the organ of speech and the rest are also benefited by the food? The answer is: No, for that benefit comes through the vital force. How the benefit done to the organ of speech etc. by the food comes through the vital force, is being explained: The gods, the organ of speech etc., called gods because they bring their respective objects to light, said to the vital force in the mouth, ‘Whatever food there is, is eaten in the world to sustain life, is just this much, and no more.—The particle ‘vai’ recalls what is well known.—And you have secured it all for yourself by chanting, i.e. have appropriated it through chanting for your own use; and we cannot live without food. Therefore now let us have a share in this food that is for yourself.’—The absence of the causative suffix in the verb is a Vedic licence.—The meaning is, make us also sharers of the food. The other said, ‘Then, if you want food sit around facing me.’ When the vital force said this, the gods said, ‘All right’ and sat down around it, i.e. encircling the vital force. As they sit thus at the command of the vital force, the food eaten by it, while sustaining life, also satisfies them. The organ of speech and the rest have no independent relation to food. Therefore the assertion that all food ‘is eaten by the vital force alone' is quite correct. This is what the text says: Hence, because the gods, the organ of speech etc., at the command of the vital force, sat around facing it, being under its protection, therefore whatever food one eats through the vital force satisfies these, the organ of speech etc.
So, as the organ of speech and the rest did with the vital force, do his relatives also sit around facing him who knows thus. knows the vital force as the support of the organ of speech etc.—knows that the five organs such as that of speech rest on the vital force; that is. he becomes the refuge of his relatives. And with his food he becomes the support of his relatives who sit around facing him, as the vital force was of the organ of speech etc. Also, the greatest among them and their leader, as the vital force was of the organs. Further, a good eater of jood, i.e. free from disease, and the ruler of them, an absolute protector, or independent master, just as the vital force was of the organ of speech etc. All this result comes to one who knows the vital force in the above way. Moreover that one among his relatives who desires to rival a man of such knowledge, i.e. the knower of the vital force, is powerless to support his dependants, like the Asuras who had rivalry with the vital force. But, among his relatives, one who follows him, this knower of the vital force, as the organ of speech and the rest did the vital force, or who desires to maintain one’s dependants being under him, just as the organs desired to support themselves by following the vital force, is alone capable of supporting them, and none else who is independent. All this is described as the result of knowing the attributes of the vital force.
In order to demonstrate that the vital force is the self of the body and organs, it has been introduced as Āṅgirasa, ‘It is Ayāsya Āṅgirasa’ (par. 8). But it has not been specifically stated why it is called Āṅgirasa. The following paragraph is introduced to furnish that reason. If that reason is valid, then only will the vital force be admitted to be the self of the body and organs. It has next been stated that the organ of speech and the rest depend on the vital force. To show how that can be proved the text says:
सोऽयास्य आङ्गिरसः, अङ्गानां हि रसः, प्राणो वा अङ्गानां रसः, प्राणो हि वा अङ्गानां रसः; तस्माद्यस्मात्कस्माच्चाङ्गात्प्राण उत्क्रामति तदेव तच्छुष्यति, एष हि वा अङ्गानां रसः ॥ १९ ॥
so'yāsya āṅgirasaḥ, aṅgānāṃ hi rasaḥ, prāṇo vā aṅgānāṃ rasaḥ, prāṇo hi vā aṅgānāṃ rasaḥ; tasmādyasmātkasmāccāṅgātprāṇa utkrāmati tadeva tacchuṣyati, eṣa hi vā aṅgānāṃ rasaḥ || 19 ||
19. It is called Ayāsya Āṅgirasa, for it is the essence of the members (of the body). The vital force is indeed the essence of the members. Of course it is their essence. (For instance), from whichever member the vital force departs, right there it withers. Therefore this is of course the essence of the members.
It is called Ayāsya Āṅgirasa, etc.—Tliis is repeated here as it is (from paragraph 8) for the sake of the answer. The passage ending with, ‘The vital force is indeed the essence of the members,’ reminds us of what has already been explained. How? The vital force is indeed the essence of the members. Of course it is their essence. The particle ‘hi’ denotes a well-known fact. Everybody knows that the vital force, and not the organ of speech etc., is the essence of the members. Therefore it is right to remind us of this fact with the words, ‘The vital force is indeed’ How is it well-known? From whichever member—any part of the body without distinction is meant—the vital force departs, right there it, that member, withers or dries up. The word ‘therefore’ signifying conclusion, is construed with the last sentence. Therefore this is of course the essence of the members, is the conclusion. Hence it is proved that the vital force is the self of the body and organs. Because when the self departs, withering or death (of the body) takes place. Hence all creatures live through that. Therefore, leaving out the organ of speech and the rest, the vital force alone should be meditated upon. This is the sense of the whole passage.
The vital force is the self not only of the body and organs, which represent form and action respectively, but also of the Vedas, Ṛc, Yajus and Sāman, which consist of name. Thus the Śruti magnifies the vital force, extolling it as the self of all, to show that it is a fit object of meditation.
एष उ एव बृहस्पतिः; वाग्वै बृहती, तस्या एष पतिः, तस्मादु बृहस्पतिः ॥ २० ॥
eṣa u eva bṛhaspatiḥ; vāgvai bṛhatī, tasyā eṣa patiḥ, tasmādu bṛhaspatiḥ || 20 ||
20. This alone is also Bṛhaspati (lord of the Ṛc). Speech is indeed Bṛhatī (Ṛc) and this is its lord. Therefore this is also Bṛhaspati.
This alone, the vital force in question called Āṅgirasa, is also Bṛhaspati. How? Speech is indeed Bṛhatī, the metre with thirty-six syllables. The metre Anuṣṭubh is speech. How? For the Śruti says, 'Speech is indeed Anuṣṭubh’ (Tai. S. V. i. 3. 5). And this speech called Anuṣṭubh is included in the metre Bṛhatī. Hence it is right to say, ‘Speech is indeed Bṛhatī,’ as a well-known fact. And in Bṛhatī all Ṛces are included, for it is extolled as the vital force. For another Śruti says, ‘Bṛhatī is the vital force.’ (Ai. X. II. i. 6); ‘One should know the Ṛces as the vital force.’ (Ibid. II. ii. 2). The Ṛces are included in the vital force, as they consist of speech. How this is so is being explained: And this vital force is its lord, the lord of speech, i.e. of the Ṛces in the form of Bṛhatī. For it gives rise to speech, since the Ṛces are recited through the air which is propelled by the fire in the stomach. Or the vital force may be the lord of speech, being its protector, for speech is protected by the vital force, since a dead man has no power to utter words. Therefore this is also Bṛhaspati, i.e. the vital force is the self of the Ṛces.
एष उ एव ब्रह्मणस्पतिः; वाग्वै ब्रह्म, तस्या एष पतिः, तस्मादु ब्रह्मणस्पतिः ॥ २१ ॥
eṣa u eva brahmaṇaspatiḥ; vāgvai brahma, tasyā eṣa patiḥ, tasmādu brahmaṇaspatiḥ || 21 ||
21. This alone is also Brahmaṇaspati (lord of the Yajus.) Speech is indeed Brahman (Yajus), and this is its lord. Therefore this is also Brahmaṇaspati.
Similarly the self of the Yajuses. How? This alone is also Brahmaṇaspati. Speech is Brahman or Yajus, which is a kind of speech. And this is its lord, the lord of that Yajus. Therefore this is indeed Brah-manaspati, as before.
How is it known that the words ‘Bṛhatī’ and ‘Brahman’ mean the Ṛc and the Yajus respectively, and nothing else? Because at the end (of this topic, in the next paragraph) the word ‘speech’ is used as co-ordinate with ‘Sāman,’ ‘Speech is indeed Sāman.’ Similarly in the sentences, ‘Speech is indeed Bṛhatī’ and ‘Speech is indeed Brahman,’ the words ‘Bṛhatī,' and ‘Brahman’, which are co-ordinate with ‘speech’, ought to mean the Ṛc and the Yajus respectively. On the principle of the residuum also this is correct. When the Sāman is mentioned, the Ṛc and the Yajus alone remain. Another reason is that they are both forms of speech. The Ṛc and the Yajus are particular kinds of speech. Hence they can well be co-ordinated with speech. Moreover, unless they are taken in that sense, there will be no difference between the two terms of each sentence. (In the next two paragraphs) ‘Sāman’ and ‘Udgītha’ clearly denote specific objects. Similarly the words ‘Bṛhatī’ and ‘Brahman’ ought to denote specific objects. Otherwise, not conveying any specific object, they would be useless, and if that specific object be mere speech, both sentences would be tautological. And lastly, the words Ṛc, Yajus, Sāman and Udgītha occur in the Vedas in the order here indicated.
एष उ एव साम; वाग्वै सा, आमैष, सा चामश्चेति तत्साम्नः सामत्वम् । यद्वेव समः प्लुषिणा, समो मशकेन, समो नागेन, सम एभिस्त्रिभिर्लोकैः, समोऽनेन सर्वेण, तस्माद्वेव साम; अश्नुते साम्नः सायुज्यं सलोकताम् य एवमेतत्साम वेद ॥ २२ ॥
eṣa u eva sāma; vāgvai sā, āmaiṣa, sā cāmaśceti tatsāmnaḥ sāmatvam | yadveva samaḥ pluṣiṇā, samo maśakena, samo nāgena, sama ebhistribhirlokaiḥ, samo'nena sarveṇa, tasmādveva sāma; aśnute sāmnaḥ sāyujyaṃ salokatām ya evametatsāma veda || 22 ||
22. This alone is also Sāman. Speech is indeed Sā, and this is Ama. Because it is Sā (speech) and Ama (vital force), therefore Sāman is so called. Or because it is equal to a white ant, equal to a mosquito, equal to an elephant, equal to these three worlds, equal to this universe, therefore this is also Sāman. He who knows this Sāman (vital force) to be such attains union with it, or lives in the same world as it.
This alone is also Sāman. How? This is being explained: Speech is indeed Sā, whatever is denoted by feminine words is speech, for the pronoun Sā (she) refers to all objects denoted by them. Similarly this vital force is Ama. The word ‘Ama’ refers to all objects denoted by masculine words. For another Śruti says, ‘How do you get my masculine names? He should reply: Through the vital force. And how my
feminine names? Through speech’ (Kau. I. 7). So this word ‘Sāman’ denotes speech and the vital force. Again, the word ‘Sāman’ denotes a chant consisting only of a combination of tones etc. that are produced by the vital force. Hence there is nothing called Sāman except the vital force and speech, for the tone, syllables, etc. are produced by the vital force and depend on it. ‘This’ vital force ‘alone is also Sāman,’ because what is generally known as Sāman is a combination of speech and the vital force, Sā and Ama. Therefore Sāman, the chant consisting of a combination of tones etc., is so called, wellknown in the world.
Or because it is equal in all those respects to be presently mentioned, therefore this is also Sāman. This is the construction. The word ‘or’ is gathered on the strength of the alternative reason indicated for the derivation of the word ‘Sāman.’ In what respects is the vital force equal? This is being answered: Equal to the body of a white ant, equal to the body of a mosquito, equal to the body of an elephant, equal to these three worlds, i.e. the body of Virāj, equal to this universe, i.e. the form of Hiraṇyagarbha. The vital force is equal to all these bodies such as that of the white ant in the sense that it is present in its entirety in them, as the essential characteristics of a cow (Gotva) are present in each individual cow. It cannot be merely of the size of these bodies, for it is formless and all-pervading. Nor does the equality mean just filling up those bodies by contraction or expansion like lamplight in a jar, a mansion, etc. For the Śruti says, ‘These are all equal, and all infinite’ (I. v. 13). And there is nothing inconsistent in an all-pervading principle assuming in different bodies their particular size. He who knows this Sāman, i.e. the vital force called Sāman because of its equality, whose glories are revealed by the Vedas, to be such, gets this result: attains union with it, identification with the same body and organs as the vital force, or lives in the same world as it, according to the difference in meditation. This is meant to be the result of meditation continued till identity with the vital force is established.
एष उ वा उद्गीथः; प्राणो वा उत्, प्राणेन हीदं सर्वमुत्तब्धम्, वागेव गीथा, उच्च गीथा चेति स उद्ग्ῑथः ॥ २३ ॥
eṣa u vā udgīthaḥ; prāṇo vā ut, prāṇena hīdaṃ sarvamuttabdham, vāgeva gīthā, ucca gīthā ceti sa udgῑthaḥ || 23 ||
23. This indeed is also Udgītha. The vital force is indeed Ut, for all this is held aloft by the vital force, and speech alone is Gīthā. This is Udgītha, because it is Ut and Gīthā.
This indeed is also Udgītha. The Udgītha is a particular division of the Sāman, not chanting, for the topic under discussion is Sāman. How is the vital force Udgītha? The vital force is indeed Ut, for all this universe is held aloft or supported by the vital force. This prefix ‘ut,’ meaning holding aloft,. denotes a characteristic of the vital force. Therefore the vital force is Ut. Speech alone is Gīthā, for the division of Sāman called Udgīthā is a variety of sound. ‘Gīthā,’ coming from the root ‘gai,’ denoting sound, is nothing but speech. The Udgītha cannot be conceived of as having any other form but sound. Hence it is right to assert that speech is Gīthā. The vital force is Ut, and Gīthā is speech dependent on the vital force; hence the two together are denoted by one word: This is Udgītha.
तद्धापि ब्रह्मदत्तश्चैकितानेयो राजानं भक्षयन्नुवाच, अयं त्यस्य राजा मूर्धानं विपातयतात्, यदितोऽयास्य आङ्गिरसोऽन्येनोदगायदिति; वाचा च ह्येव स प्राणेन चोदगायदिति ॥ २४ ॥
taddhāpi brahmadattaścaikitāneyo rājānaṃ bhakṣayannuvāca, ayaṃ tyasya rājā mūrdhānaṃ vipātayatāt, yadito'yāsya āṅgiraso'nyenodagāyaditi; vācā ca hyeva sa prāṇena codagāyaditi || 24 ||
24. Regarding this (there is) also (a story): Brahmadatta, the great-grandson of Cikitāna, while drinking Soma, said, ‘Let this Soma strike off my head if I say that Ayāsya Āṅgirasa chanted the Udgītha through any other than this (vital force and speech).’ Indeed he chanted through speech and the vital force.
Regarding this subject described above a story is also narrated in the śruti. Brahmadatta, the grandson of Cikitāna, while drinking Soma in a sacrifice, said, ‘Let this Soma in the bowl that I am drinking strike off my head for being a liar, i.e. if I have told a lie.’—The suffix of the verb is a substitute for an imperative suffix and expresses a wish.—How can he become a liar? This is being explained: ‘If I say that Ayāsya Āṅgirasa chanted the Udgītha through any other deity than this vital force combined with speech, which is being discussed.’ The term ‘Ayāsya Āṅgirasa,’ denoting the vital force in the mouth, refers to the priest who chanted in the sacrifice of the ancient sages who projected this world. ‘If I say like this, I shall be a liar, and for entertaining this false notion let that deity strike off my head.’ The mention of his taking this oath shows that one must have a firm conviction of this knowledge. This purport of the story the Śruti concludes in its own words: He, that chanter, called here Ayāsya Āṅgirasa, chanted through speech, which is subordinate to the vital force, and the vital force, which is his own self, meaning this is the significance of the oath.
तस्य हैतस्य साम्नो यह् स्वं वेद भवति हास्य स्वम्; तस्य वै स्वर एव स्वम्, तस्मादार्त्विज्यम् करिष्यन्वाचि स्वरमिच्छेत, तया वाचा स्वरसम्पन्नयार्त्विज्यं कुर्यात्; तस्माद्यज्ञे स्वरवन्तं दिदृक्षन्त एव, अथो यस्य स्वं भवति; भवति हास्य स्वं य एवमेतत्साम्नः स्वं वेद ॥ २५ ॥
tasya haitasya sāmno yaḥ svaṃ veda bhavati hāsya svam; tasya vai svara eva svam, tasmādārtvijyam kariṣyanvāci svaramiccheta, tayā vācā svarasampannayārtvijyaṃ kuryāt; tasmādyajñe svaravantaṃ didṛkṣanta eva, atho yasya svaṃ bhavati; bhavati hāsya svaṃ ya evametatsāmnaḥ svaṃ veda || 25 ||
25. He who knows the wealth of this Sāman (vital force) attains wealth. Tone is indeed its wealth. Therefore one who is going to officiate as a priest should desire to have a rich tone in his voice, and he should do his priestly duties through that voice with a fine tone. Therefore in a sacrifice people long to see a priest with a good voice, like one who has wealth. He who knows the wealth of Sāman to be such attains wealth.
He who knows the wealth of this Sāman, the vital force under consideration, denoted by the word ‘Sāman,’ which is here pointed out as being the one in the mouth—what happens to him?—he attains wealth. Having drawn his attention by tempting him with (a mention of) the result, the scripture tells the listener: Tone is indeed its wealth. ‘Tone’ is sweetness of the voice; that is its wealth or ornament. For chanting, when attended with a good tone, appears as magnificent. Because this is so, therefore one who is going to officiate as a priest, i.e. a chanter, should desire to have a rich tone in his voice, in order to enrich the Sāman with that tone. This is an incidental injunction; for if the vital force (identified with the chanter) is to be realised as having a good tone through the fact of Sāman possessing it, a mere wish will not effect this, and therefore, it is implied, appropriate means such as cleaning the teeth and sipping oil should be adopted. And he should do his prīcstly duties through that cultured voice with a fine tone. Because tone is the wealth of Sāman and the latter is embellished by it, therefore in a sacrifice people long to see a prīest with a good voice, as they do a rich man. It is a well-known fact that people want to see one who has wealth. The result, already declared, of the meditation on this characteristic of the vital force is repeated as a conclusion: He who knows the wealth of Sāman to be such attains wealth.
तस्य हैतस्य साम्नो यः सुवर्णम् वेद, भवति हास्य सुवर्णम्; तस्य वै स्वर एव सुवर्णम्; भवति हास्य सुवर्णं य एवमेतत्साम्नः सुवर्णं वेद ॥ २६ ॥
tasya haitasya sāmno yaḥ suvarṇam veda, bhavati hāsya suvarṇam; tasya vai svara eva suvarṇam; bhavati hāsya suvarṇaṃ ya evametatsāmnaḥ suvarṇaṃ veda || 26 ||
26. He who knows the correct sound of this Sāman (vital force) obtains gold. Tone is indeed its correct sound. He who knows the correct sound of Sāman to be such obtains gold.
Now meditation on another attribute, viz. possessing correct sound, is being enjoined. That too is having a good tone, but there is this difference: The previous one was sweetness of the voice; whereas this, denoted by the word ‘Suvarṇa’ is correct articulation according to the laws of phonetics. He who knows the correct sound of this Sāman obtains gold, for the word ‘Suvarṇa’ means both a good tone and gold. That is to say, the result of meditating upon this attribute is the obtaining of gold, which is the common meaning of the word ‘Suvarṇa.’ Tone is indeed its correct sound. He who knows the correct sound of Sāman to be such obtains gold. All this has been explained.
तस्य हैतस्य साम्नो यः प्रतिष्ठां वेद प्रति ह तिष्ठति; तस्य वै वागेव प्रतिष्ठा, वाचि हि खल्वेष एतत्प्राणः प्रतिष्ठितो गीयते; अन्न इत्यु हैक आहुः ॥ २७ ॥
tasya haitasya sāmno yaḥ pratiṣṭhāṃ veda prati ha tiṣṭhati; tasya vai vāgeva pratiṣṭhā, vāci hi khalveṣa etatprāṇaḥ pratiṣṭhito gīyate; anna ityu haika āhuḥ || 27 ||
27. He who knows the support of this Sāman (vital force) gets a resting place. Speech (certain parts of the body) is indeed its support. For resting on speech is the vital force thus chanted. Some say, resting on food (body).
Similarly, in order to enjoin meditation on another feature of the vital force, viz. its support, the text says: He who knows the support of this Sāman, i.e. speech, on which the Sāman rests, gets a resting place. The result is aptly in accordance with the meditation, for the Śruti says, ‘(One becomes) exactly as one meditates upon Him’ (Ś. X. v. 2. 20). As before, when one has been tempted by a mention of the result and wants to hear what that support is, the scripture says: Speech is indeed the support of the Saman. ‘Speech’ here means the different parts of the body such as the root of the tongue; those are the support. This is explained by the text: For resting on speech, i.e. the root of the tongue and other places, is the vital force thus chanted, assumes the form of a chant. Therefore speech is the support of the Sāman. Some say, it is chanted resting on food. It is but proper to say that the vital force rests on this. Since this latter view is also unexceptionable, one should meditate at his option upon either speech or food as the support of the vital force.
अथातः पवमानानामेवाभ्यारोहः; स वै खलु प्रस्तोता साम प्रस्तौति, स यत्र प्रस्तुयात्, तदेतानि जपेत्—असतो मा सद्गमय, तमसो मा ज्योतिर्गमय, मृत्योर्मामृतं गमयेति; स यदाहासतो मा सद्गमयेति, मृत्युर्वा असत्, सदमृतम्, मृत्योर्मामृतं गमय, अमृतम् मा कुर्वित्येवैतदाह; तमसो मा ज्योतिर्गमयेति, मृत्युर्वै तमः, ज्योतिरमृतम्, मृत्योर्मामृतं गमय, अमृतं मा कुर्वित्येवैतदाह; मृत्योर्मामृतं गमयेति नात्र तिरोहितमिवास्ति । अथ यानीतराणि स्तोत्राणि तेष्वात्मनेऽन्नाद्यमागायेत्, तस्मादु तेषु वरं वृणीत यं कामं कामयेत तम्; स एष एवंविदुद्गातात्मने वा यजमानाय वा यं कामं कामयते तंआगायति; तद्धैतल्लोकजिदेव; न हैवालोक्यताया आशास्ति य एवमेतत्साम वेद ॥ २८ ॥
इति तृतीयं ब्राह्मणम् ॥
athātaḥ pavamānānāmevābhyārohaḥ; sa vai khalu prastotā sāma prastauti, sa yatra prastuyāt, tadetāni japet—asato mā sadgamaya, tamaso mā jyotirgamaya, mṛtyormāmṛtaṃ gamayeti; sa yadāhāsato mā sadgamayeti, mṛtyurvā asat, sadamṛtam, mṛtyormāmṛtaṃ gamaya, amṛtam mā kurvityevaitadāha; tamaso mā jyotirgamayeti, mṛtyurvai tamaḥ, jyotiramṛtam, mṛtyormāmṛtaṃ gamaya, amṛtaṃ mā kurvityevaitadāha; mṛtyormāmṛtaṃ gamayeti nātra tirohitamivāsti | atha yānītarāṇi stotrāṇi teṣvātmane'nnādyamāgāyet, tasmādu teṣu varaṃ vṛṇīta yaṃ kāmaṃ kāmayeta tam; sa eṣa evaṃvidudgātātmane vā yajamānāya vā yaṃ kāmaṃ kāmayate taṃāgāyati; taddhaitallokajideva; na haivālokyatāyā āśāsti ya evametatsāma veda || 28 ||
iti tṛtīyaṃ brāhmaṇam ||
28. Now therefore the edifying repetition (Abhyāroha) only of the hymns called Pavamānas. The priest called Prastotṛ indeed recites the Sāman. ‘While he recites it, these Mantras are to be repeated: From evil lead me to good. From darkness lead me to light. From death lead me to immortality. When the Mantra says, ‘From evil lead me to good,’ ‘evil’ means death, and ‘good’ immortality, so it says, ‘From death lead me to immortality, i.e. make me immortal.’ When it says, ‘From darkness lead me to light,’ ‘darkness' means death, and ‘light,’ immortality; so it says, ‘From death lead me to immortality, or make me immortal.’ In the dictum, ‘From death lead me to immortality,’ the meaning does not seem to be hidden. Then through the remaining hymns (the chanter) should secure eatable food for himself by chanting. Therefore, while they are being chanted, the sacrificer should ask for a boon—anything that he desires. Whatever objects this chanter possessed of such knowledge desires, either for himself or for the sacrificer, he secures them by chanting. This (meditation) certainly wins the world (Hiraṇyagarbha). He who knows the Sāman (vital force) as such has not to pray lest he be unfit for this world.
A repetition of Mantras is being prescribed for one who knows the vital force as such. The meditation by knowing which one is entitled to this repetition of Mantras has been mentioned. Now, because this repetition of Mantras by one possessed of such knowledge produces the result of elevation to divinity, therefore it is being described here. This repetition, being connected with chanting, may be thought applicable to every chant; so it is restricted by the mention of the Pavamānas. But since one may think that it should be done with all the three Pavamānas, the time is being further restricted: The priest called indeed recites the Sāman. While he recites it, i.e. when he begins to chant the Sāman, these Mantras are to be repeated. And this repetition of Mantras is called ‘Abhyāroha,’ because through this repetition one possessed of such knowledge ‘advances towards’ the realisation of one’s innate divinity. The plural in ‘these' indicates that there are three Yajus Mantras. The use of the accusative case and the fact that these Mantras occur iii a Brāhmaṇa or explanatory portion of the Vedas, indicate that the usual accent should be used in these words, and not the special intonation used in the hymns. This repetition of Mantras is to be done by the sacrificer.
These are the Yajus Mantras in question: From evil lead me to good. From darkness lead me to light. From death lead me to immortality. The meaning of the Mantras is hidden. So the Brāhmaṇa itself explains them: When the Mantra says, ‘From evil lead me to good,’ what is the meaning? ‘Evil’ means death, i.e. our natural actions and thoughts; ‘evil,’ because they degrade us very much; and ‘good,’ i.e. actions and thoughts as they are regulated by the scriptures, means immortality, because they lead to it. Therefore the meaning is, ‘From evil actions and ignorance lead me to actions and thoughts that are regulated by the scriptures, i. e. help me to identify myself with those things that lead to divinity.’ The import of the sentence is being stated: So it says, ‘Make me immortal.’ Similarly, when it says, ‘From darkness lead me to light,’ ‘darkness’ means death. All ignorance, being of the nature of a veil, is darkness; and it again is death, being the cause of it. And ‘light’ means immortality, the opposite of the above, one's divine nature. Knowledge, being luminous, is called light; and it again is immortality, being of an imperishable nature. So it says, ‘From death lead me to immortality, or make me immortal,’ as before, i, e. help me to realise the divine status of Virāj. The first Mantra means, help me to identify myself with the means of realisation, instead of with things that are not such; while the second one means, help me to go beyond that even—for it is a form of ignorance —and attain identity with the result. The third Mantra, ‘From death lead me to immortality gives the combined meaning of the first two, and is quite clear. In this the meaning does not seem to be hidden as in the first two, i. e. it should be taken literally.
Then, after chanting for the sacrificer with the three Pavamānas, through the remaining hymns the chanter who knows the vital force and has become identified with it, should secure eatable food for himself by chanting, just like the vital force. Because this chanter knows the vital force as above described, therefore he is able to obtain that desired object. Therefore, while they are being chanted, the sacrificer should ask for a boon—anything that he desires. Because whatever objects this chanter possessed of such knowledge desires, either for himself or for the sacrificer, he secures them by chanting. This sentence should precede the one before it (for the sake of sense).
Thus it has been stated that meditation and rites together lead to identification with Hiraṇyagarbha. There is no possibility of a doubt regarding this. Therefore a doubt is being raised as to whether, in the absence of rites, meditation alone can lead to that result or not. To remove it, the text says: This meditation on the vital force certainly wins the world (Hiraṇyagarbha), even if it is disjoined from the rites. He has not to pray lest he he unfit for this world, for one who has already realised his identity with Hiraṇyagarbha cannot possibly pray for the attainment of him. A man who is already in a village is not eager about when he will reach it, as a man who is in a forest is. Expectation is always about something remote, something other than one’s self; it is impossible with regard to one’s own self. Therefore there is no chance of his fearing lest he should ever miss identity with Hiraṇyagarbha.
Who gets this result? He who knows this Sāman as such, meditates upon the vital force whose glories have been described above, till he realises his identity with it in the following way:
‘I am the pure vital force, not to be touched by the evils characteristic of the Asuras, viz. the attachment of the senses to their objects. The five organs such as that of speech have, by resting on me, been freed from the defects of these evils, which spring from one’s natural thoughts, and have become fire and so forth; and they are connected with all bodies by partaking of the eatable food that belongs to me. Being Āṅgirasa, I am the self of all beings. And I am the self of speech manifesting itself as Ṛc, Yajus, Sāman and Udgītha, for I pervade it and produce it. I am transformed into a chant as Sāman, and have the external wealth or embellishment of a good voice; and I also have a more intimate treasure, consisting of fine articulation according to phonetics. And when I become the chant, the throat and other parts of the body are my support. With these attributes I am completely present in all bodies beginning with that of a white ant, being formless and all-pervading.’
Footnotes and references:
For the story compare Chhändogya Up. I. ii. 1-9.
By the Mīmāṃsaka.
What? Through what? And how?—denoting respectively the result, the means and the method of a rite.
Such as perception. Isolated words do not add to our knowledge, but only serve to call up the things they denote, if we happen to know them already.
A fabulous mountain round which the sun and the planets are said to revolve. The directions east, west, etc., vary according to the relative position of the dwellers around this mountain, the east being that in which they see the sun rise. But the direction overhead is obviously constant to all of them.
The passage, ‘He whose ladle is made of Palāśa (Butea Frondosa) wood never hears an evil verse’ (Tai. S. HI. v. 7. 2), is a eulogy, because it is subsidiary to an enjoined rite.
From the spiritual standpoint. The physical danger is too patent to need a scriptural warning.
There are three kinds of actions, viz. the regular (Nitya), the occasional (Naimittika) and those done for material ends (Kāmya). Of these, the first two are obligatory’ and the third optional.
In this and the succeeding paragraphs the organ refers to the deity identified with it.
In the sacrifice called Jyotiṣṛoma twelve hymns are chanted by the Udgātr. The fruits of chanting the first three of these, called Pavamāna, go to the sacrificer, and those of the rest to the chanting priest.
‘Then through the remaining hymns (the chanter) should secure eatable food for himself by chanting’ (I. iii. 28).
The half-brother of Rāma in the Rāmāyaṇa.
Just as a god is a part of a sacrifice distinct from the offerings etc. A sacrifice consists of the offerings and deities.
That is, inhabited country.
This although they officiate in the sacrifice on behalf of the sacrificer. The latter afterwards purchases them on payment of a fee to the priests.
The nominative singular of both is ‘Anaḥ.’ Hence the explanation. It should be noted that the word ‘Anena’ is also the instrumental singular of the pronoun ‘Idam’ (this or it).
Whose great-grandfather (i.e. Cikitāna) at least was living. This is implied by the suffix. See Pānini IV. i. 163.
Pāṇini VII. i. 35.
That the vital force is the deity of the Udgītha.
Which is indicated by the use of the instrumental case in the directions.
Who is the cosmic form of the vital force.