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Brihadaranyaka Upanishad

///Brihadaranyaka Upanishad
Brihadaranyaka Upanishad 2014-12-12T13:03:10+00:00

Source: “The Upanishads – A New Translation” by Swami Nikhilananda

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Invocation  

Om. That is full; this is full. This fullness has been projected  from that fullness. When this fullness merges in that fullness,  all that remains is fullness.  

Om. Peace! Peace! Peace!

Part One

Chapter I�Meditation on the Horse�sacrifice 

1.    Om, verily, the head of the sacrificial horse is the dawn, its eye  the sun, its vital breath the wind, its open mouth the Vaisvanara  fire and the trunk of the sacrificial horse is the year. The back is  heaven, the belly the intermediate region, the hoof the earth, the  sides the four quarters, the ribs the intermediate quarters, the  limbs the seasons, the joints the months and half�months, the  feet the days and nights, the bones the stars, the flesh the  clouds. Its half�digested food is the sand, the blood�vessels  the rivers, the liver and lungs the mountains, the hair the herbs  and trees. The fore part of the horse is the rising sun and the  hinder part the setting sun. Its yawn is lightning, its shaking of  the body is thunder, its water is rain and its neighing is indeed  voice. 

2.    The day, verily, is the golden cup called mahiman, in front of  the horse, which arose pointing it out. Its source is the eastern  sea. The night, verily, is the silver cup called mahiman, behind  the horse, which arose pointing it out. Its source is the western  sea. These two vessels appeared at either end of the horse. As a  racer the horse carried the gods; as a stallion, the gandharvas;  as a runner, the demons; as a horse, men. The sea is its stable  and the sea, its source.

Chapter II�The Process of Creation 

1.    In the beginning there was nothing whatsoever in the universe.  By Death, indeed, all this was covered�by hunger, for hunger  is, verily, death. “Let Me have a mind,” was His desire and He  created the mind. Then He moved about, worshipping Himself.  From Him, thus worshipping, water was produced. “Verily,”  Death though, “while I was worshipping, water was produced”;  that is why the Arka (fire used in the Horse�sacrifice) is so  called. Surely, happiness comes to him who knows how the fire  came to be called arka.

2.    Water, verily, is arka. What was then like froth on the water  became solidified; that was earth. After the earth was created,  Hiranyagarbha was tired. From Him, thus fatigued and heated,  came forth His essence as brightness. That was Fire.

3.    He divided Himself into three: the sun one�third and the air  one�third. Thus Prana is divided into three. His head is the  east and His arms are that (the north�east) and that (the  south�east). His hinder

Part is the west and His two hip�  bones are that (the north�west) and that (the south�west). His  sides are the south and the north, His back is heaven, His belly  is the intermediate region and His chest is the earth. Thus He  stands firm on water. He who knows this stands firm wherever  he goes.

4.    He desired: “Let a second self be born of Me,” and He (Death  or Hunger) brought about the union of speech with the mind.  What was the seed there became the year. Prior to that there  had been no year. He (Death) bore him (the year) for as long as  a year and after that time projected him. Then, when he was  born, Death opened His mouth to devour him. He (the child)  cried: “Bhan!” and that, indeed, became speech.

5.    He thought: “If I kill him, I shall have but very little food,” and  through the union of that speech and that mind He brought  forth all this, whatever there is: the Rig�Veda, the Yajur�  Veda, the Sama�Veda, the metres, the sacrifices, men and  animals. Whatever He brought forth He resolved to eat. Verily,  because He eats everything, therefore is Aditi (Death) called  Aditi. He who knows why Aditi came to have this name of  Aditi becomes the eater of everything and everything becomes  his food.

6.    He desired: “Let me sacrifice again with the great sacrifice.” He  was tired and he practiced austerities. From Him thus fatigued  and heated, His fame and vigour departed. The pranas (organs)  are verily fame and vigour. When the pranas went out His body  began to swell, but the mind was set on the body.

7.    He desired: “Let this body of Mine be fit for a sacrifice and let  Me be embodied through this.” Thinking thus, He entered the  body. Because the body swelled (asvat), therefore it came to be  called horse (asva). And because it became fit for sacrifice  (medhya), therefore the Horse�sacrifice came to be known as  Asvamedha. He who knows this verily knows the Horse�  sacrifice.  Prajapati, desiring again to sacrifice with the great sacrifice,  imagined Himself as the horse and letting the horse remain  free, He reflected on it. At the end of a year he sacrificed it to  Himself and dispatched the other animals to the gods.  Therefore priests even now sacrifice to Prajapati the sanctified  horse dedicated to all the gods.  Verily, the sun who shines yonder is the Horse�sacrifice. His  body is the year. This earthly fire is the arka (sacrificial fire),  whose limbs are these worlds. So these two, fire and the sun,  are the arka and the Asvamedha (Horse�sacrifice). These two,  again, become the same god, Death. He who knows this  conquers further death; death cannot overcome him; death  becomes his self; and he becomes one with these deities.

Chapter III�The Prana: Its Glories and Redeeming Power 

1.    There were two classes of Prajapati�s sons: the gods (devas)  and the demons (asuras). Naturally, the gods were few and the  demons many. They struggled with one another for mastery of  these worlds. Being overwhelmed by the demons, the gods  said: “Well, let Us overcome the demons at the sacrifice  (jyotishtoma) by means of the Udgitha.”

2.    They said to the organ of speech: “Chant the Udgitha for us.”  “So be it,” said speech and chanted for them. Whatever  enjoyment common to all comes from the organ of speech, it  secured for the gods by chanting, while the enjoyment derived  from the fine utterance of the words it utilized for itself. Now,  the demons knew that through this chanter the gods would  overcome them. They charged at it (speech) and pierced it with  evil. That evil is what is found today when one speaks  improperly; that is that evil.

3.    Then they said to the organ of smell: “Chant the Udgitha for  us.” “So be it,” said the organ and chanted for them. Whatever enjoyment common to all comes from the nose, it secured for  the gods by chanting, while the enjoyment derived from fine  smelling it utilized for itself. Now, the demons knew that  through this chanter the gods would overcome them. They  charged at it and pierced it with evil. That evil is what is found  today when one smells improper things; that is that evil.

4.    Then they said to the organ of Seeing: “Chant the Udgitha for  us.” “So be it,” said the organ and chanted for them. Whatever  enjoyment common to all comes from the eye, it secured for the  gods by chanting, while the enjoyment derived from fine seeing  it utilized for itself. Now, the demons knew that through this  chanter the gods would overcome them. They charged at it and  pierced it with evil. That evil is what is found today when one  sees improper things; that is that evil.

5.    Then they said to the organ of hearing: “Chant the Udgitha for  us.” “So be it,” said the organ and chanted for them. Whatever  enjoyment common to all comes from the ear, it secured for the  gods by chanting, while the enjoyment derived from fine  hearing it utilized for itself. Now, the demons knew that  through this chanter the gods would overcome them. They  charged at it and pierced it with evil. That evil is what is found  today when one hears improper things; that is that evil.

6.    Then they said to the mind: “Chant the Udgitha for us.” “So be  it,” said the mind and chanted for them. Whatever enjoyment  common to all comes from the mind, it secured for the gods by  chanting, while the enjoyment derived from fine thinking it  utilized for itself. Now, the demons knew that through this  chanter the gods would overcome them. They charged at it and  pierced it with evil. That evil is what is found today when one  thinks improperly; that is that evil.  Likewise they also touched these other deities with evil�smote  them with evil.

7.    Then they said to the vital breath in the mouth: “Chant the  Udgitha for us.” “So be it,” said the vital breath and chanted for  them. The demons knew that through this chanter the gods  would overcome them. They charged at it, intending to pierce it  with evil. But as a clod of earth, hitting a stone, is scattered,  even so they were scattered in all directions, crushed and completely destroyed. Thereupon the gods became established  in their true selves and the demons perished. He who knows  this becomes his true self and his spiteful kinsman perishes.

8.    Then the organs said: “Where is that which joined us to our true  selves?” After deliberation they discovered that it was here,  within the mouth (asye). Hence the vital breath (prana) is called  ayasya and also, because it is the essence (rasa) of the limbs  (anga) of the body, angirasa.

9.    That deity is called “dur,” because death is far (dur) from it.  From him who knows this, death is far away.

10.    That deity took away death, the evil of these gods and carried it  to where the end of the quarters is. There it deposited their evil.  Therefore let no one go to a person of that region, or to the  country beyond the border, lest he should meet there with evil,  with death.

11.    That deity, after taking away the death�the evil�of the gods,  carried them beyond death.

12.    First of all, it carried the organ of speech, which is the foremost  organ. When the organ of speech was freed from death it  became fire. That fire, having transcended death, shines beyond  its reach.

13�15.    Then it carried the organ of smell. When it was freed from  death it became air (Vayu). That air, having transcended death,  blows beyond its reach.  Then it carried the organ of sight. When it was freed from death  it became the sun (Surya). That sun, having transcended death,  shines beyond its reach.  Then it carried the organ of hearing. When it was freed from  death, it became the quarters (Disah). Those quarters, having  transcended death, remain beyond its reach.

16.    Then it carried the mind. When the mind was freed from death  it became the moon (Chandra). That moon, having transcended  death, shines beyond its reach. Thus, verily, that deity carries  beyond death him who knows this.

17.    Next it (the vital breath) obtained eatable food for itself by  chanting. For whatever food is eaten, is eaten by the vital  breath alone and it (the vital breath) rests on that (the food).

18.    The gods said to the vital breath: “Verily, just this much is all  the food there is and you have secured it for yourself by  chanting. Now give us, please, a share of this food.”  “Then sit around facing me.”  “So be it.”  They sat down around the vital breath. That is why whatever  food one eats through the vital breath satisfies the organs.  So do his relatives sit around facing him who knows this; he  becomes the supporter of his kinsmen, the greatest among them  and their leader, a good eater of food and their lord.  Whoever, among his kinsmen, the greatest among them and  their leader, a good eater of food and their lord.  Whoever, among his kinsmen, desires to be a rival of the man  who has this knowledge is not able to support his dependents.  But, on the other hand, he who follows him (the knower of the  vital breath) and who, following him, desires to support his  dependents is certainly able to do so.

19.    It is called ayasa angirasa, for it is the essence (rasa) of the  limbs (anga). Yes, the prana is the essence of the limbs. From  whichever limb the vital breath departs, that limb withers right  there; therefore it is verily the essence of the limbs.

20.    It is also Brihaspati (lord of the Rig�Veda). Speech is Brihati  (Rig) and the vital breath is its lord (pati). Therefore it is called  Brihaspati.

21.    It is also the Brahmanaspati (lord of the Yajur�Veda). Speech  is Brahman (Yajur) and the vital breath is its lord (pati).  Therefore it is called Brahmanaspati.

22.    Prana is Saman, too. Speech is, verily, sa and this (prana) is  ama. Saman (the chant of the Sama�Veda) is known by that  name because it is sa (speech) and ama (prana). Or because it  (prana) is equal (sama) to a white ant, equal to a mosquito,  equal to an elephant, equal to these three worlds, nay, equal to  this universe; therefore it (prana) is indeed the Sama�Veda.  He who knows this vital breath to be such attains union with it  or lives in the same world with it.

23.    And it is also the Udgitha. The vital breath is verily ut, for by  the vital breath all this universe is upheld (uttabdha); and  speech is githa (song). And because it is ut and githa, therefore  it is Udgitha.

24.    Regarding this there is also the following anecdote:  Brahmadatta, the great�grandson of Chikitana, while drinking  king [soma], said: “Let this soma strike off my head if I say that  the ayasya angirasa chanted the Udgitha through any other  means than this vital breath and speech.” Surely he chanted  through speech and the vital breath.

25.    He who knows the wealth of this saman (Vital breath) obtains  wealth. Tone, indeed, is its wealth. Therefore let one who is  going to perform the sacrificial work as a priest desire that his  voice may have a good tone and let him perform the sacrifice  through that voice with a good tone. Therefore people desire to  see at a sacrifice a priest with a good voice, like one who has  wealth. He who thus knows what is the wealth of the saman  obtains wealth.

26.    He who knows the suvarna (gold) of the saman (vital breath)  obtains gold. Tone is verily its gold. He who thus knows what  is the gold of the saman obtains gold.

27.    He who knows the support of the saman (vital breath) gets a  support. Speech Verily is its support. For, supported in speech,  the vital breath is transformed into a chant. Some say the  support is in food (the body).

28.    Next follows the edifying repetition (abhyaroha) only of the  hymns called pavamanas. The priest called prastotri indeed  chants the saman. While he chants it, let the sacrificer recite  these [Yajur verses]:  “Lead me from the unreal to the real. From darkness lead me to  light. From death lead me to immortality.”  When the mantra (verse) says: “Lead me from the unreal to the  real,” “the unreal” means death and the “real,” immortality; so it  says, “From death lead me to immortality,” that is to say,  “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,” that is to say, “Make me immortal.”  In the verse: “From death lead me to immortality,” there is  nothing that is hidden.  Then come the remaining hymns, with which, by singing them,  [the chanter] should obtain food for himself. Therefore while  they are being chanted let the sacrificer ask for a boon�  anything that he desires. Whatever objects this chanter,  endowed with such knowledge, desires for himself or for the  sacrificer, he obtains by his chanting. This [meditation] by  itself wins the world (Hiranyagarbha). He who thus knows the  saman (the prana, or vital breath)�for him there is no fear of  not being admitted into that world.

Chapter IV�The Creation and Its Cause 

1.    In the beginning, this universe was the self (Viraj) alone, in the  shape of a person. He reflected and saw nothing else but His  self. He first said: “I am He.” Therefore He came to be known  by the name I (Aham). Hence, even now, when a person is  addressed, he first says: “It is I,” and then says whatever other  name he may have. And because He, before (purva) the whole  group of aspirants, burnt (aushat) all evils, therefore He is  called Purusha. He who knows this verily burns up him who  wishes to be Viraj in advance of him.

2.    He was afraid. Therefore people still are afraid when alone. He  thought: “Since there is nothing else but Myself, what am I  afraid of?” Thereupon His fears were gone; for what was there  to fear? Assuredly, it is from a second entity that fear arises.

3.    He was not at all happy. Therefore a person even today is not  happy when alone. He desired a mate. He became the size of a  man and wife in close embrace. He divided this body into two.  From that division arose husband (pati) and wife (patni).  Therefore, as Yajnavalkya said, the body before one accepts a  wife is one half of oneself, like the half of a split pea. Therefore  this space is indeed filled by the wife. He was united with her.  From that union human beings were born.

4.    She reflected: “How can he unite with me after having  produced me from himself? Well, let me hide myself.” She  became a cow, the other (Manu) became a bull and was united  with her; from that union cows were born. The one became a  mare, the other became a stallion; the one became a she�ass,  the other became a he�ass and was united with her; from that  union one�hoofed animals were born. The one became a  she�goat, the other became a he�goat; the one became a hew,  the other became a ram and was united with her; from that  union goats and sheep were born. Thus, indeed, he produced  everything that exists in pairs, down to the ants.

5.    He (Viraj) realized: “Indeed, I am the creation, for I produced  all this.” Therefore He became the creation. He who knows this  becomes a creator in this creation of Viraj.

6.    Then He (Viraj) rubbed back and forth thus and produced fire  from its source: the mouth and the hands. Therefore both the  hands and mouth are hairless inside.  When they (the priests) speak of particular gods, saying:  “Sacrifice to him,” “Sacrifice to that one,” they are mistaken;  for these are all His manifestations: He Himself is all the gods.  Now, whatever is liquid, He produced from semen; and that is  soma. This universe is indeed this much: food and the eater of  food. Soma is food; and fire, the eater of food. This is the  highest creation of Viraj, that He projected the gods, who are even superior to Him. This is the highest creation because He,  although mortal Himself, manifested the immortal. And he who  knows this verily becomes a creator in this highest creation of  Viraj.

7.    Now, all this universe was then undifferentiated. It became  differentiated by name and form: it was known by such and  such a name and such and such a form. Thus to this day this  universe is differentiated by name and form; so it is said. “He  has such a name and such a form.”  This Self has entered into these bodies up to the very tips of the  nails, as a razor lies hidden in its case, or as fire, which sustains  the world, lies hidden in its source. People do not see the Self,  for when viewed in parts It is incomplete: when breathing, It is  called the vital breath (prana); when speaking, the organ of  speech; when seeing, the eye; when hearing, the ear; when  thinking, the mind. These are merely Its names according to Its  functions. He who meditates on one or another of Its aspects  does not know, for It is then incomplete: the Self is separated  from Its totality by being associated with a single characteristic.  The Self alone is to be meditated upon, for in It all these  become unified. Of all these, this Self alone should be known,  for one knows all these through It, just as one may find an  animal which is lost through its footprints. He who thus knows  the Self obtains fame and association with dear ones.

8.    This Self is dearer than a son, dearer than wealth, dearer than  everything else, because It is innermost. If one holding the Self  dear were to say to a person who speaks of anything other than  the Self as dear, that he, the latter, will lose what he holds  dear�and the former is certainly competent to do so�it will  indeed come true.  One should meditate upon the Self alone as dear. He who  meditates upon the Self alone as dear�what he holds dear will  not perish.

9.    They say: “Since men think that by the Knowledge of Brahman  they become all, what, pray, was it that Brahman knew by  which It became all?”

10.    This self was indeed Brahman in the beginning. It knew itself  only as “I am Brahman.” Therefore it became all. And whoever  among the gods had this enlightenment, also became That  Brahman. It is the same with the seers (rishis), the same with  men. The seer Vamadeva, having realized this self as That,  came to know: “I was Manu and the sun.” And to this day,  whoever in a like manner knows the self as “I am Brahman,”  becomes all this universe. Even the gods cannot prevent his  becoming this, for he has become their Self.  Now, if a man worships another deity, thinking: “He is one and  I am another,” he does not know. He is like an animal to the  gods. As many animals serve a man, so does each man serve  the gods. Even if one animal is taken away, it causes anguish to  the owner; how much more so when many are taken away!  Therefore it is not pleasing to the gods that men should know  this.

11.    In the beginning this (the kshatriya and other castes) was  indeed Brahman, one only without a second. He, being one, did  not flourish. He projected, further, an excellent form,  kshatriyahood�those kshatriyas (rulers) among the gods:  Indra, Varuna, Soma (Moon), Rudra, Parjanya, Yama, Mrityu  (Death) and Isana. Therefore there is none higher than the  kshatriyas. Thus at the Rajasuya sacrifice, the brahmin sits  below and worships the kshatriya. He confers that glory on  kshatriyahood alone. But brahminhood is nevertheless the  source of kshatriyahood. Therefore even though the king is  exalted in the sacrifice, at the end of it he resorts to  brahminhood as his source. He who slights a brahmin strikes at  his own source. He becomes more evil, as one who slights his  superior.

12.    Yet He (Viraj) did not flourish. He projected the Vaisya  caste�those classes of gods who are designated in groups: the  Vasus, Rudras, Adityas, Visve�devas and Maruts.

13.    Still He did not flourish. He projected the sudra caste�Pushan.  This earth is Verily Pushan (the nourisher); for it nourishes all  that exists.

14.    Yet He did not flourish. He projected, further, that excellent  form, justice (dharrna). This justice is the controller of the  kshatriya. Therefore there is nothing higher than justice. So  even a weak man hopes to defeat a stronger man through   justice, as one does with the help of a king. Verily, that which  is justice is truth. Therefore if a man speaks the truth, they say  he speaks what is just and if he speaks what is just, they say he  speaks the truth; for justice alone is both these.

15.    So these four castes were projected: the brahmin: the kshatriya,  the vaisya and the sudra. Among the gods Prajapati became a  brahmin as fire and among men He became the brahmin. He  became a kshatriya among men through the divine kshatriyas, a  vaisya through the divine vaisyas and a sudra through the  divine sudras. Therefore people desire to attain the results of  their rites among the gods through fire and among men as a  brahmin. For Prajapati directly projected Himself as these two  forms.  Now, if a man departs from this world without realizing his  own World (the Self), It, being unknown, does not protect  him�as the Vedas, unrecited, or as a deed unaccomplished, do  not protect him. Nay, even if one who does not know It (the  Self) should perform here on earth a great many meritorious  acts, those acts will in the end surely perish for him. One  should meditate only upon the World called the Self. He who  meditates upon the World called the Self�his work does not  perish; for from this very Self he projects whatever he desires.

16.    Now, this self (the ignorant person) is an object of enjoyment  (lokah) to all beings. In so far as he offers oblations in the fire  and performs sacrifices, he becomes an object of enjoyment to  the gods. In so far as he studies the Vedas, he becomes an  object of enjoyment to the rishis. In so far as he makes  offerings to the Manes and desires children, he becomes an  object of enjoyment to the Manes. In so far as he gives shelter  and food to men, he becomes an object of enjoyment to men. In  so far as he gives fodder and water to the animals, he becomes  an object of enjoyment to the animals. In so far as beasts and  birds and even ants find a living in his home, he becomes an  object of enjoyment to these. Just as one wishes no injury to  one’s body, so do all beings wish no injury to him who has this  knowledge. All this, indeed, has been known and well  investigated.

17.    In the beginning this aggregate of desirable objects was but the  self, one only. He cherished the desire: “Let me have a wife, so  that I may be born as the child; and let me have wealth, so that I  may perform rites.” This much, indeed, is the range of desire;  even if one wishes, one cannot get more than this. Therefore, to  this day, a man who is single desires: “Let me have a wife, so  that I may be born as the child; and let me have wealth, so that I  may perform rites.” So long as he does not obtain each one of  these, he thinks he is incomplete.  Now, his completeness can also come in this way: The mind is  his self, speech his wife, the vital breath his child, the eye his  human wealth, for he finds it with the eye; the ear his divine  wealth, for he hears it with the ear; the body his instrument of  rites, for he performs rites through the body. So this sacrifice  has five factors�the animals have five factors, men have five  factors and all this that exists has five factors. He who knows  this obtains all this.

Chapter V�Manifestations of Prajapati 

1.    The following are the mantras:  “I shall now disclose that the father produced seven kinds of  food through meditation and rites. One is common to all eaters.  Two he assigned to the gods. Three he designed for himself.  And one he gave to the animals. On it (food) rests everything�  whatsoever breathes and whatsoever breathes not. Why are not  these foods exhausted although they are always being eaten?  He who knows the cause of this inexhaustibility of the food  eats food with pre�eminence (pratika). He obtains identity  with the gods and lives on nectar.”

2.    When it is said: “That the father produced seven kinds of food  through meditation and rites,” the statement means that the  father indeed produced them through meditation and rites.  When it is said: “One is common to all eaters,” it means that the  food which is eaten is that which is common to all. He who  appropriates this food is never free from evil, for this is, verily,  the general food. When it is said: “Two he assigned to the  gods,” the statement means oblations made in the fire and  presents offered otherwise to the gods. Therefore people make  oblations in the fire and offer presents otherwise to the gods.  Some, however, say that the two foods refer to the new�moon  and full�moon sacrifices. Therefore one should not engage in  sacrifices for material ends. When it is said: “One he gave to  the animals,” the statement refers to milk; for at first men and  animals live on milk alone. That is why they first make a  new�born babe lick melted butter or they put it to the breast.  And they speak of the new�born calf as not yet eating grass.  When it is said: “On it rests everything�whatsoever breathes  and whatsoever breathes not,” it means that everything rests on milk, all that breathes and breathes not. It is further said in  another Brahmana that by making offerings of milk in the fire  for a year one overcomes further death; but one should not  think thus. For he who knows this overcomes further death the  very day he makes the offering, because he offers all eatable  food to the gods. When it is asked: “Why are not these foods  exhausted although they are always being eaten?” the answer is  that the eater is indeed the cause of this inexhaustibility, for he  produces this food again and again. When it is said: “He who  knows the cause of this inexhaustibility,” the statement means  that the eater is indeed the cause of this inexhaustibility, for he  produces this food through meditation and rites. If he did not do  this the food would be exhausted. When it is said: “He eats  food with pratika,” the word pratika means pre�eminence;  hence the meaning is that he eats food pre�eminently. The  statement: “He obtains identity with the gods and lives on  nectar,” is a eulogy.

3.    “Three he designed for himself”�that is to say, the mind, the  organ of speech and the vital breath; these he designed for  himself. They say: “My mind was elsewhere, I did not see it;  my mind was elsewhere, I did not hear it.” It is clear that a man  sees with his mind and hears with his mind. Desire,  determination, doubt, faith, lack of faith, steadfastness, lack of  steadfastness, shame, intelligence and fear�all this is truly the  mind. Even if one is touched from behind, one knows it  through the mind; therefore the mind exists.  Whatever sound there is, it is just the organ of speech; for it  serves to determine a thing, but it cannot itself be revealed.  The prana, apana, vyana, udana, samana and ana�all these are  but the vital breath (prana). This body (atma) consists of  these�the organ of speech, the mind and the vital breath.

4.    These verily are the three worlds: the organ of speech is this  world (the earth), the mind is the intermediary world (the sky)  and the vital breath is that world (heaven).

5.    These verily are the three Vedas: the organ of speech is the  Rig�Veda, the mind is the Yajur�Veda and the vital breath is  the Sama�Veda.

6.    These verily are the gods, the Manes and men: the organ of  speech is the gods, the mind is the Manes and the vital breath is  men.

7.    These verily are father, mother and child: the mind is the father,  the organ of speech is the mother and the vital force is the  child.

8�10.    These verily are what is known, what is to be known and what  is unknown. Whatever is known is a form of the organ of  speech, for it is the knower. The organ of speech protects him  who knows its different manifestations by becoming that which  is known).  Whatever is to be known is a form of the mind, for the mind is  what is to be known. The mind protects him who knows this by  becoming that which is to be known.  Whatever is unknown is a form of the vital breath, for the vital  breath is what is unknown. The vital breath protects him who  knows this by becoming that which is unknown.

11.    The earth is the body of that organ of speech and this fire is its  luminous organ. And as far as the organ of speech extends, so  far extends the earth and so far extends fire.

12.    Now, heaven is the body of this mind and that sun yonder is its  luminous organ. And as far as the mind extends, so far extends  the earth and so far extends fire. The two (fire and the sun)  were united and from that was born the vital breath. It (the vital  breath) is the supreme Lord (Indra). It is without a rival. A  second being is, indeed, a rival. He who knows this has no  rival.

13.    Next, water is the body of this vital breath and that moon  yonder is its luminous organ. And as far as the vital breath  extends, so far extends water and so far extends the moon.  These are all equal, all infinite. He who meditates upon them as  finite wins a finite world, but he who meditates upon them as  infinite wins an infinite world.

14.    That Prajapan, represented by the year, consists of sixteen parts. The nights and days are fifteen of his parts and the  constant point is the sixteenth. He as the moon is increased and  decreased by the nights and days. Through the sixteenth
part he  permeates all living beings as the new�moon night and rises  the following morning. Therefore, in honour of this deity, on  this night let no one cut off the breath of any breathing being,  not even of a lizard.

15.    Verily, the person who knows this is himself that Prajapati who  is endowed with sixteen parts and who is represented by the  year. Wealth constitutes fifteen of his parts and the body is his  sixteenth part. He is increased and decreased by that wealth.  This body is the nave and wealth is the felloe. Therefore even if  a man loses everything, but lives in his body, people say that he  has lost only his felloe which can be restored again.

16.    Now, these are, verily, the three worlds: the world of men, the  world of the Manes and the world of the gods. The world of  men can be gained through a son only and by no other rite; the  world of the Manes through rites; and the world of the gods  through meditation. The world of the gods is the best of the  worlds. Therefore they praise meditation.

17.    Now therefore follows the entrusting: When a man thinks he is  about to die, he says to his son: “You are Brahman, you are the  sacrifice and you are the world.” The son replies: “I am  Brahman, I am the sacrifice, I am the world.”  The Sruti explains the thoughts of the father:  “Whatever has been studied by me (the father) is all unified in  the word Brahman. Whatever sacrifices have been made by me  (the father) are all unified in the word sacrifice. And whatever  worlds were to be; won by me (the father) are all unified in the  word world. All this it indeed this much. He (the son), being all  this, will protect me from the ties of this world.” Therefore they  speak of a son who is well instructed as being conducive to the  winning of the world; and therefore a father instructs him.  When a father who knows this departs from this world, he�  along with his own organ of speech, mind and vital breath�  penetrates his son. If, through a lapse, any duty has been left  undone by him, the son exonerates him from all that; therefore  he is called a son. The father remains in this world through the  son. The divine and immortal organ of speech, mind and vital  breath enter into him (the father).

18.    The divine organ of speech from the earth and fire enters into  him. That is the divine organ of speech through which whatever  he says is fulfilled.

19.    The divine mind from heaven and the sun permeates him. That  is the divine mind through which he becomes joyful only and  grieves no more.

20.    The divine vital breath from water and the moon permeates  him. And, verily, that is the divine vital breath which, whether  moving or not moving, neither feels pain nor is injured. He who  knows this becomes the self of all beings. As is this deity  (Hiranyagarbha), so is he. And as all beings honour this deity,  so do they honour him. Howsoever creatures may grieve, that  grief of theirs remains with them but only merit goes to him.  No demerit ever goes to the gods.

21.    Next follows the consideration of the vow (meditative  worship):  Prajapati projected the organs. They, when they were projected,  quarrelled with one another. The organ of speech resolved: “I  will go on speaking”; the eye: “I will go on seeing”; the ear: “I  will go on hearing.” So did the other organs, according to their  functions. Death, having taken the form of weariness, laid hold  of them�it overtook them and having overtaken them,  restrained them. Therefore does the organ of speech become  tired and so do the eye and the ear. But death did not overtake  the vital breath (prana) in the body. The other organs resolved  to know it and said: “This is verily the greatest among us;  whether moving or not moving, it neither feels pain nor is  injured. Well then, let us assume its form.” They all assumed its  form. Therefore they are called pranas after it.  In whatever family there is a man who knows this�that family  they call by his name. And whoever competes with one who  knows this, shrivels and after shrivelling, in the end dies. This  is with regard to the body.

22.    Now with regard to the gods. Fire resolved: “I will go on  burning”; the sun: “I will go on giving heat”; the moon: “I will  go on shining.” And so did the other gods, according to their  functions. As is the vital breath in the body among the organs,  so is air (vayu) among the gods. The other gods fade, but not  air. Air is the deity that never sets.

23.    Now there is this verse (sloka):  The gods observed the vow of that from which the sun rises and  in which it sets. This vow is followed today and this will be  followed tomorrow. The sun rises verily from the prana (the  vital breath in its cosmic form) and also sets in it. The gods  even today observe the same vow which they observed then.  Therefore a man should observe a single vow�he should  perform the functions of the prana and apana (respiration and  excretion), lest the evil of death should overtake him. And if he  performs them, let him try to complete them. Through this he  obtains identity with that deity, or lives in the same world with  it.

Chapter VI�The Three Aspects of the Universe 

1.    Verily, this universe is a triad of name, form and work. Of  those names which are in daily use, speech (sound in general) is  the source (uktha), for from it all names arise. It is their  common feature (saman), for it is common to all names. It is  their Brahman (self), for it supports all names.

2.    Next, of forms, the eye is the source (uktha), for from it all  forms arise. It is their Common feature (saman), for it is  common to all forms. It is their Brahman (self), for it supports  all forms.

3.    Next, of work, the body is the source (uktha), for from it all  works arise. It is their common feature (saman), for it is  common to all works. It is their Brahman (self), for it supports  all works.  These three together are one�this body; and the body,  although one, is these three. This immortal entity is covered by  truth: the vital breath is the immortal entity and name and form  are truth and by them the immortal entity is covered.

Part Two

Chapter I�Relative Aspects of Brahman 

1.    Om. There lived of yore a man of the Garga family called  proud Balaki, who was an eloquent speaker. He said to  Ajatasatru, the king of Kasi: “I will tell you about Brahman.”  Ajatasatru said: “For this proposal I give you a thousand cows.  People indeed rush, saying: ‘Janaka, Janaka.’ I too have some of  his virtues.”

2.    Gargya said: “That being (purusha) who is in the sun, I  meditate upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please  do not talk to me about him. I meditate upon him as all�  surpassing, as the head of all beings and as resplendent.”  Whosoever thus meditates upon him becomes all�surpassing,  the head of all beings and resplendent.

3.    Gargya said: “That being (purusha) who is in the moon, I  meditate upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please  do not talk to me about him. I meditate upon him as the great,  white�robed, radiant Soma.” Whosoever thus meditates upon  him has, every day, abundant soma pressed for him in his  principal and auxiliary sacrifices and his food never runs short.

4.    Gargya said: “That being (purusha) who is in the lightning, I  meditate upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please  do not talk to me about him. I meditate upon him as luminous.”  Whosoever thus meditates upon him becomes luminous and his  progeny too become luminous.

5.    Gargya said: “This being (purusha) who is in the akasa, I  meditate upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please  do not talk about him. I meditate upon him as full and  unmoving.” Whosoever thus meditates upon him is filled with progeny and cattle and his progeny is never extinct from this  world.

6.    Gargya said: “This being (purusha) who is in the air, I meditate  upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please do not talk  about him. I meditate upon him as the Lord (Indra), as  irresistible and as the unvanquished army.” Whosoever thus  meditates upon him becomes ever victorious, invincible and a  conqueror of enemies.

7.    Gargya said: “This being (purusha) who is in fire, I meditate  upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please do not talk  about him. I meditate upon him as forbearing.” Whosoever thus  meditates upon him becomes forbearing and his progeny  becomes forbearing.

8.    Gargya said: “This being (purusha) who is in water, I meditate  upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please do not talk  about him. I meditate upon him as agreeable.” Whosoever thus  meditates upon him�to him comes what is agreeable, not what  is disagreeable and to him are born children who are agreeable.

9.    Gargya said: “This being (purusha) who is in the mirror, I  meditate upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please  do not talk about him. I meditate upon him as shining.”  Whosoever thus meditates upon him becomes shining and his  progeny too becomes shining and he outshines all those with  whom he comes in contact.

10.    Gargya said: “The sound that arises behind a man while he  walks, I meditate upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no!  Please do not talk about him. I meditate upon him as life.”  Whosoever thus meditates upon him reaches his full age on this  earth and life does not depart from him before the completion  of that time.

11.    Gargya said: “This being (purusha) who is in the quarters, I  meditate upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please do not talk about him. I meditate upon him as second and as  inseparable.” Whosoever thus mediates upon him gets  companions and his followers never part with him.

12.    Gargya said: “This being (purusha) who consists of shadow, I  meditate upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please  do not talk about him. I meditate upon him as death.”  Whosoever thus meditates upon him reaches his full age on this  earth and death does not overtake him before the completion of  that time.

13.    Gargya said: “This being (purusha) who is in the self, I  meditate upon as Brahman.” Ajatasatru said: “No, no! Please  do not talk about him. I meditate upon him as self�possessed.”  Whosoever thus meditates upon him becomes self�possessed  and his progeny too becomes self�possessed. Gargya  remained silent.

14.    Ajatasatru said: “Is this all?” “That is all.” “By knowing that  much one cannot know Brahman.” “Let me approach you as a  student,” said Gargya.

15.    Ajatasatru said: “It is contrary to usual practice that a brahmin  should approach a kshatriya, thinking: ‘He will teach me about  Brahman.’ Nevertheless, I will instruct you.” So saying, he took  Gargya by the hand and rose. They came to a sleeping man.  Ajatasatru addressed him by these names: Great, White�  robed, Radiant, Soma. The man did not get up. The king  pushed him again and again with his hand till he awoke. Then  he got up.

16.    Ajatasatru said: “When this being full of consciousness  (identified with the intellect) was thus asleep, where was it then  and whence did it thus come back?” Gargya did not know the  answer.

17.    Ajatasatru said: “When this being full of consciousness  (vijnana maya) is thus asleep, it absorbs, at that time, the  functions of the organs through its own consciousness and rests  in the Supreme Self (akasa) that is in the heart. When this being  absorbs them, it is called svapiti. Then the organ of smell is  absorbed, the organ of speech is absorbed, the eye is absorbed,  the ear is absorbed and the mind is absorbed.”

18.    When the self remains in the dream state, these are its  achievements (results of past action): It then becomes a great  king, as it were; or a noble brahmin, as it were; or attains, as it  were, high or low states. Even as a great king, taking with him  his retinue of citizens, moves about, according to his pleasure,  within his own domain, so does the self, taking with it the  organs, move about according to its pleasure, in the body.

19.    Next, when the self goes into deep sleep�when it does not  know anything�it returns along the seventy�two thousand  nerves called hita, which extend from the heart throughout the  whole body and remains in the body. As a baby or an emperor  or a noble brahmin lives, having reached the summit of  happiness, so does the self rest.

20.    As the spider moves along the thread it produces, or as from a  fire tiny sparks fly in all directions, even so from this Atman  come forth all organs, all worlds, all gods, all beings. Its secret  name (Upanishad) is “the Truth of truth.” The vital breaths are  the truth and their truth is Atman.

Chapter II�Description of the Prana 

1.    He who knows the calf together with its abode, its special  resort, its post and its rope, kills his seven hostile kinsmen. The  vital breath in the body is indeed the calf; this body is its abode,  the head its special resort, strength its post and food its rope.

2.    These seven gods that prevent decay worship it (the calf):  through these pink lines in the eye, Rudra attends on it; through  the water in the eye, Parjanya attends on it; through the pupil of  the eye, the sun attends on it; through the black of the eye, fire  attends on it; through the white portion, Indra; through the lower eyelid, the earth; and through the upper eyelid, heaven  attends on it. He who knows this�his food does not diminish.

3.    Regarding this there is the following mantra: “There is a bowl  which has its mouth below and which bulges at the top.  Manifold knowledge has been put into it; seven sages sit on its  rim and the organ of speech, which has communication with  the Vedas, is the eighth.” What is called the “bowl which has its  mouth below and which bulges at the top” is this head of ours,  for it is a bowl which has its mouth below and which bulges at  the top. When it is said: “Manifold knowledge has been put into  it,” this refers to the organs; these indeed represent manifold  knowledge. When it is said: “Seven sages sit on its rim,” this  refers to the organs; they indeed are the sages. “The organ of  speech, which has communication with the Vedas, is the  eighth” because the organ of speech is the eighth and  communicates with the Vedas.

4.    These two ears are Gotama and Bharadvaja: this one (the right)  is Gotama and this one (the left), Bharadvaja. These two eyes  are Visvamitra and Jamadagni: this one (the right) is  Visvamitra and this one (the left), Jamadagni. These two  nostrils are Vasishtha and Kasyapa: this one (the right) is  Vasishtha and this one (the left), Kasyapa. The tongue is Atri,  for through the tongue food is eaten. Atri is the same as atti  (eating). He who knows this becomes the eater of everything  and everything becomes his food.

Chapter III�The Two Forms of Brahman 

1.    Verily, there are two forms of Brahman: gross and subtle,  mortal and immortal, limited and unlimited, definite and  indefinite.

2.    The gross form is that which is other than air and akasa. It is  mortal, limited and definite. The essence of that which is gross,  which is mortal, which is limited and which is definite is the  sun that shines, for it (the sun) is the essence of the three  elements.

3.    Now the subtle: It is air and akasa. It is immortal, it is unlimited  and it is indefinite. The essence of that which is subtle, which is  immortal, which is unlimited and which is indefinite is the  Person (Purusha) in the solar orb, for that Person is the essence  of the two elements. This is with reference to the gods.

4.    Now with reference to the body: The gross form is that which is  other than the air and the akasa that is in the body. It is mortal,  it is limited and it is definite. The essence of that which is  gross, which is mortal, which is limited and which is definite is  the eye; for it (the eye) is the essence of the three elements.

5.    Now the subtle: It is the air and the akasa that is in the body. It  is immortal, it is unlimited and it is indefinite. The essence of  that which is subtle, which is immortal, which is unlimited and  which is indefinite is the person (purusha) that is in the right  eye, for that person is the essence of the two elements.

6.    The form of that person is like a cloth dyed with turmeric, or  like grey sheep’s wool, or like the scarlet insect called  Indragopa, or like a tongue of fire, or like a white lotus, or like  a flash of lightning. He who knows this�his splendour is like a  flash of lightning. Now, therefore, the description of Brahman:  “Not this, not this” (Neti, Neti); for there is no other and more  appropriate description than this “Not this.” Now the  designation of Brahman: “The Truth of truth.” The vital breath  is truth and It (Brahman) is the Truth of that.

Chapter IV�Yajnavalkya and Maitreyi (I) 

1.    “Maitreyi, my dear,” said Yajnavalkya, “I am going to renounce  this life. Let me make a final settlement between you and  Katyayani (his other wife).”

2.    Thereupon Maitreyi said: “Venerable Sir, if indeed the whole  earth, full of wealth, belonged to me, would I be immortal  through that?” “No,” replied Yajnavalkya, “your life would be just like that of people who have plenty. Of Immortality,  however, there is no hope through wealth.”

3.    Then Maitreyi said: “What should I do with that which would  not make me immortal? Tell me, venerable Sir, of that alone  which you know to be the only means of attaining  Immortality.”

4.    Yajnavalkya replied: “My dear, you have been my beloved  even before and now you say what is after my heart. Come, sit  down; I will explain it to you. As I explain it, meditate on what  I say.”

5.    Then Yajnavalkya said: “Verily, not for the sake of the  husband, my dear, is the husband loved, but he is loved for the  sake of the self which, in its true nature, is one with the  Supreme Self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the wife, my dear, is the wife loved,  but she is loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the sons, my dear, are the sons  loved, hut they are loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of wealth, my dear, is wealth loved,  but it is loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the brahmin, my dear, is the  brahmin loved, but he is loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the kshatriya, my dear, is the  kshatriya loved, but he is loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the worlds, my dear, are the worlds  loved, but they are loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the gods, my dear, are the gods  loved, but they are loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the beings, my dear, are the beings  loved, but they are loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the All, my dear, is the All loved,  but it is loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, my dear Maitreyi, it is the Self that should be  realized�should be heard of, reflected on and meditated upon.  By the realization of the Self, my dear�through hearing,  reflection and meditation�all this is known.

6.    “The brahmin rejects one who knows him as different from the  Self. The kshatriya rejects one who knows him as different  from the Self. The worlds reject one who knows them as  different from the Self. The gods reject one who knows them as  different from the Self. The beings reject one who knows them  as different from the Self. The All rejects one who knows it as  different from the Self. This brahmin, this kshatriya, these  worlds, these gods, these beings and this All�are that Self.

7�9.    “As the various particular kinds of notes of a drum, when it is  beaten, cannot be grasped by themselves, but are grasped only  when the general note of the drum or the general sound  produced by different kinds of strokes is grasped;  “And as the various particular notes of a conch, when it is  blown, cannot be grasped by themselves, but are grasped only  when the general note of the conch or the general sound  produced by different kinds of blowing is grasped;  “And as the various particular notes of a vina, when it is  played, cannot be grasped by themselves, but are grasped Only  when the general note of the vina or the general sound  produced by different kinds of playing is grasped;  Similarly, no particular objects are perceived in the waking and  dream states apart from Pure Intelligence.

10.    “As from a fire kindled with wet fuel various kinds of smoke  issue forth, even so, my dear, the Rig�Veda, the Yajur�Veda,  the Sama�Veda, the Atharvangirasa, history (itihasa),  mythology (purana), the arts (vidya), the Upanishads, verses  (slokas), aphorisms (sutras), elucidations (anuvyakhyanas) and  explanations (vyakhyanas) are like the breath of this infinite  Reality. From this Supreme Self are all these, indeed, breathed  forth.

11.    “As the ocean is the one goal of all waters (i.e. the place where  they merge), so the skin is the one goal of all kinds of touch,  the nostrils are the one goal of all smells, the tongue is the one  goal of all savours, the ear is the one goal of all sounds, the  mind is the one goal of all deliberations, the intellect is the one  goal of all forms of knowledge, the hands are the one goal of all  actions, the organ of generation is the one goal of all kinds of  enjoyment, the excretory organ is the one goal of all excretions,  the feet are the one goal of all kinds of walking, the organ of  speech is the one goal of all the Vedas.

12.    “As a lump of salt dropped into water becomes dissolved in  water and cannot be taken out again, but wherever we taste the  water it tastes salt, even so, my dear, this great, endless, infinite  Reality is Pure Intelligence alone. This self comes out as a  separate entity from these elements and with their destruction  this separate existence also is destroyed. After attaining  oneness it has no more consciousness. This is what I say, my  dear.”  So said Yajnavalkya.

13.    Then Maitreyi said: “Just here you have bewildered me,  venerable Sir, by saying that after attaining oneness the self has  no more consciousness.”  Yajnavalkya replied: “Certainly I am not saying anything  bewildering, my dear. This Reality is enough for knowledge, O  Maitreyi.”

14.    “For when there is duality, as it were, then one smells another,  one sees another, one hears another, one speaks to another, one  thinks of another, one knows another. But when everything has  become the Self, then what should one smell and through what,  what should one see and through what, what should one hear  and through what, what should one speak and through what,  what should one think and through what, what should one  know and through what? Through what should One know That  owing to which all this is known�through what, my dear,  should one know the Knower?”

Chapter V�The Interdependence of Created Objects 

1.    This Earth is the honey (effect) of all beings and all beings are  the honey (effect) of this earth. Likewise, the bright, immortal  being who is in this earth and the bright, immortal, corporeal  being who is in the body are both honey. These four are but this  Self. The Knowledge of this Self is the means to Immortality;  this underlying unity is Brahman; this Knowledge of Brahman  is the means of becoming all.

2.    This water is the honey (effect) of all beings and all beings are  the honey (effect) of this water. Likewise, the bright, immortal being who is in this water and the bright, immortal being  existing as the semen in the body are both honey. These four  are but this Self. The Knowledge of this Self is the means to  Immortality; this underlying unity is Brahman; this Knowledge  of Brahman is the means of becoming all.

3.    This fire is the honey (effect) of all beings and all beings are  the honey (effect) of this fire. Likewise, the bright, immortal  being who is in this fire and the bright, immortal being  identified with the organ of speech in the body are both honey.  These four are but this Self. The Knowledge of this Self is the  means to Immortality; this underlying unity is Brahman; this  Knowledge of Brahman is the means of becoming all.

4.    This air is the honey (effect) of all beings and all beings are the  honey (effect) of this air. Likewise, the bright, immortal being  who is in this air and the bright, immortal being identified with  the vital breath in the body are both honey. These four are but  this Self. The Knowledge of this Self is the means to  Immortality; this underlying unity is Brahman; this Knowledge  of Brahman is the means of becoming all.

5.    This sun is the honey (effect) of all beings and all beings are  the honey (effect) of this sun. Likewise, the bright, immortal  being who is in this sun and the bright, immortal being  identified with the eye in the body are both honey. These four  are but this Self. The Knowledge of this Self is the means to  Immortality; this underlying unity is Brahman; this Knowledge  of Brahman is the means of becoming all.

6.    These quarters are the honey (effect) of all beings and all  beings are the honey (effect) of these quarters. Likewise, the  bright, immortal being who is in these quarters and the bright,  immortal being identified with the ear in the body and with the  time of hearing are both honey. These four are but this Self.  The Knowledge of this Self is the means to Immortality; this  underlying unity is Brahman; this Knowledge of Brahman is  the means of becoming all.

7.    This moon is the honey (effect) of all beings and all beings are  the honey (effect) of this moon. Likewise, the bright, immortal  being who is in this moon and the bright, immortal being  identified with the mind in the body are both honey. These four  are but this Self. The Knowledge of this Self is the means to  Immortality; this underlying unity is Brahman; this Knowledge  of Brahman is the means of becoming all.

8.    This lightning is the honey (effect) of all beings and all beings  are the honey (effect) of this lightning. Likewise, the bright,  immortal being who is in this lightning and the bright, immortal  being identified with the light in the body are both honey.  These four are but this Self. The Knowledge of this Self is the  means to Immortality; this underlying Unity is Brahman; this  Knowledge of Brahman is the means of becoming all.

9.    This thunder�cloud is the honey (effect) of all beings and all  beings are the honey (effect) of this thunder�cloud. Likewise,  the bright, immortal being who is in this thunder�cloud and  the bright, immortal being identified with sound and with the  voice in the body are both honey. These four are but this Self.  The Knowledge of this Self is the means to Immortality; this  underlying unity is Brahman; this Knowledge of Brahman is  the means of becoming all.

10.    This akasa is the honey (effect) of all beings and all beings are  the honey (effect) of this akasa. Likewise, the bright, immortal  being who is in this akasa and the bright, immortal being  identified with the akasa in the heart in the body are both  honey. These four are but this Self. The Knowledge of this Self  is the means to Immortality; this underlying unity is Brahman;  this Knowledge of Brahman is the means of becoming all.

11.    This dharma (righteousness) is the honey (effect) of all beings  and all beings are the honey (effect) of this dharma. Likewise,  the bright, immortal being who is in this dharma and the bright,  immortal being identified with the dharma in the body are both  honey. These four are but this self. This knowledge of this self  is the means to Immortality; this underlying unity is Brahman;  this knowledge of Brahman is the means of becoming all.

12.    This truth is the honey (effect) of all beings and all beings are  the honey (effect) of this truth. Likewise, the bright, immortal  being who is in this truth and the bright, immortal being  identified with truth in the body are both honey. These four are  but this Self. The Knowledge of this Self is the means to  Immortality; this underlying unity is Brahman; this Knowledge  of Brahman is the means of becoming all.

13.    This mankind is the honey (effect) of all beings and all beings  are the honey (effect) of this mankind. Likewise, the bright,  immortal being who is in mankind and the bright, immortal  being identified with mankind in the body are both honey.  These four are but this Self. The Knowledge of this Self is the  means to Immortality; this underlying unity is Brahman; this  Knowledge of Brahman is the means of becoming all.

14.    This cosmic body (atman) is the honey (effect) of all beings  and all beings are the honey (effect) of this cosmic body.  Likewise, the bright, immortal being who is in the cosmic body  and the bright, immortal being identified with the individual  self are both honey. These four are but this Self. The  Knowledge of this Self is the means to Immortality; this  underlying unity is Brahman; this Knowledge of Brahman is  the means of becoming all.

15.    And verily this Self is the Ruler of all beings, the King of all  beings. Just as all the spokes are fixed in the nave and the felloe  of a chariot wheel, so are all beings, all gods, all worlds, all  organs and all these individual creatures fixed in this Self.

16.    This, verily, is the honey (madhu�doctrine) which Dadhyach,  versed in the Atharva�Veda, taught the Asvins. The Mantra  (the rishi) perceived this and said:  “O Asvins in human form, I will disclose that terrible deed of  yours, called damsa, which you performed out of greed, as the  thunder�cloud discloses the approaching rain. I will disclose  the honey (madhu�doctrine), which Dadhyach, versed in the  Atharva�Veda, taught you through the head of a horse.”

17.    This, verily, is the honey (madhu�doctrine) which Dadhyach,  versed in the Atharva�Veda, taught the Asvins. The Mantra  (the rishi) perceived this and said:  “O Asvins, you fixed a horse’s head on Dadhyach, versed in the  Atharva�Veda, who, O terrible ones, wishing to be true to his  promise, taught you the ritualistic meditation on the honey  (madhu�doctrine) connected with the sun and also the secret  (spiritual) meditation on it.”

18.    This, verily, is the honey (madhu�doctrine) which Dadhyach,  versed in the Atharva�Veda, taught the Asvins. The Mantra  (rishi) perceived this and said:  “He (the Lord) made bodies with two feet; He made bodies  with four feet. Having first become a bird (the subtle body), He,  the Supreme Person, entered the bodies. On account of His  dwelling in all bodies (pur), He is called the Person (Purusha).  There is nothing that is not covered by Him, nothing that is not  pervaded by Him.”

19.    This, verily, is the honey (madhu�doctrine) which Dadhyach,  versed in the Atharva�Veda, taught the Asvins. The Mantra  (the rishi) perceived this and said:  “He (the Lord) transformed Himself in accordance with each  form and each form of His was for the sake of making Him  known. The Lord (Indra), through His mayas, appears  manifold; for to Him are yoked ten horses, nay, hundreds. “This  Atman is the organs; It is ten and thousands�many and  infinite. This Brahman is without antecedent or consequent,  without interior or exterior. This self, the all�perceiving, is  Brahman. This is the teaching of the Upanishads.”

Chapter VI�The Line of Teachers 

1.    Now the line of teachers through whom the honey, or the  madhu�doctrine, has been transmitted:  Pautimashya received it from Gaupavana. Gaupavana from  another Pautimashya. This Pautimashya from another  Gaupavana. This Gaupavana from Kausika. Kausika from  Kaundinya. Kaundinya from Sandilya. Sandilya from Kausika  and Gautama. Gautama

2.    From Agnivesya. Agnivesya from Sandilya and Anabhimlata.  Anabhimlata from another Anabhimlata. This Anabhimlata  from still another Anabhimlata. This Anabhimlata from  Gautama. Gautama from Saitava and Prachinayogya. Saitava  and Prachinayogya from Parasarya. Parasarya from Bharadvaja.  Bharadvaja from another Bharadvaja and Gautama. Gautama  from still another Bharadvaja. This Bharadvaja from Parasarya.  Parasarya from Baijavapayana. Baijavapayana from  Kausikayani. Kausikayani

3.    From Ghritakausika. Ghritakausika from Parasaryayana.  Parasaryayana from Parasarya. Parasarya from Jatukarnya.  Jatukarnya from Asurayana and Yaska. Asurayana from  Traivani. Traivani from Aupajandhani. Aupajandhani from  Asuri. Asuri from Bharadvaja. Bharadvaja from Atreya. Atreya  from Manti. Minti from Gautama. Gautama from another  Gautama. This Gautama from Vatsya. Vatsya from Andilya.  Andilya from Kaisorya Kapya. Kaisorya Kapya from  Kumaraharita. Kumaraharita from Galava. Galava from  Vidarbhikaundinya. Vidarbhikaundinya from Vatsanapat  Babhrava. Vatsanapat Babhrava from Pathin Saubhara. Pathin  Saubhara from Ayasya Angirasa. Ayasya Angirasa from Abhuti  Tvashtra. Abhuti Tvashtra from Visvarupa Tvashtra. Visvarupa  Tvashtra from the Asyins. The Asvins from Dadhyach  Atharvana. Dadhyach Atharvana from Atharvana Daiva.  Atharvana Daiva from Mrityu Pradhvamsana. Mrityu  Pradhvamsana from Pradhvamsana. Pradhvamsana from  Ekarshi. Ekarshi from Viprachitti. Viprachitti from Vyashti.  Vyashti from Sanaru. Sanaru from Sanatana. Sanatana from  Sanaga. Sanaga from Parameshthin (Viraj). Parameshthin from  Brahma (Hiranyagarbha). Brahman is self�born. Salutation to  Brahman.

Part Three

Chapter I�Yajnavalkya and Asvala 

1.    Om. Janaka, Emperor of Videha, performed a sacrifice in  which gifts were freely distributed among the priests. Brahmin  scholars from the countries of Kuru and Panchala were  assembled there. Emperor Tanaka of Videha wished to know  which of these brahmins was the most erudite Vedic scholar.  So he confined a thousand cows in a pen and fastened on the  horns of each ten padas of gold.

2.    He said to them: “Venerable brahmins, let him among you who  is the best Vedic scholar drive these cows home.”  None of the brahmins dared. Then Yajnavalkya said to one of  his pupils: “Dear Samsrava, drive these cows home.” He drove  them away.  The brahmins were furious and said: “How does he dare to call  himself the best Vedic scholar among us?”  Now among them there was Asvala, the hotri priest of Emperor  Janaka of Videha. He asked Yajnavalkya: “Are you indeed the  best Vedic scholar among us, O Yajnavalkya?”  He replied: “I bow to the best Vedic scholar, but I just wish to  have these cows.”  Thereupon the hotri Asvala determined to question him.

3.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “since everything here (i.e. connected  with the sacrifice) is overtaken by death, since everything is  overcome by death, by what means does the sacrificer free  himself from the reach of death?”  “Through the hotri priest and the organ of speech looked upon  as fire. The sacrificer’s organ of speech is the hotri. This organ  of speech is fire; this fire is the hotri; this fire is the means  to liberation; this is complete liberation.”

4.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “since everything here is overtaken by  day and night, since everything is overcome by day and night,  by what means does the sacrificer free himself from the reach  of day and night?”  “Through the adhvaryu priest and the eye looked upon as the  sun. The sacrificer’s eye is the adhvaryu. This eye is the sun.  This sun is the adhvaryu; this sun is the means to liberation;  this is complete liberation.”

5.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “since everything here is overtaken by  the bright and dark fortnights, since everything is overcome by  the bright and dark fortnights, by what means does the  sacrificer free himself from the reach of the bright and dark  fortnights?”  “Through the udgatri priest and the vital breath looked upon as  the air. This vital breath is the udgatri. This vital breath is the air; this air is the udgatri; this air is the means to liberation; this  is complete liberation.”

6.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “since the sky is, as it were, without a  support, by means of what support does the sacrificer go to  heaven?”  “Through the Brahma priest and the mind looked upon as the  moon. The sacrificer’s mind is the Brahma. The mind is the  moon; this moon is the Brahma; this moon is the means to  liberation; this is complete liberation.  So far about the ways of liberation; now about the meditation  based upon resemblance.

7.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “how many kinds of Rig verses will the  hotri priest use today in this sacrifice?”  “Three kinds.”  “And which are these three?”  “The introductory, the sacrificial and the eulogistic as the  third.”  “What does he (the sacrificer) win through them?”  “All this that has life.”

8.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “how many kinds of oblations will the  adhvaryu priest offer today in this sacrifice?”  “Three.”  “And which are these three?”  “Those which, when offered, blaze upward; those which, when  offered, make a great noise; and those which, when offered,  sink down.”  “What does he (the sacrificer) win through them?”  “By those which, when offered, blaze upward, he wins the  world of the gods; for the world of the gods shines bright, as it  were. By those which, when offered, make a great noise, he  wins the world of the Manes; for this world of the Manes is  excessively noisy. By those which, when offered, sink down,  he wins the world of men; for the world of men is down  below.”

9.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “with how many gods does the Brahma  priest seated on the right protect the sacrifice today?”  “With one.”  “Which is that one?”  “The mind. The mind is indeed infinite and infinite are the  Visve�devas. An infinite world he (the sacrificer) wins  thereby.”

10.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “how many kinds of hymns of praise  will the udgatri priest chant today in this sacrifice?”  “Three.”  “And which are these three?”  “The introductory, the sacrificial and the eulogistic “Which are  those that have reference to the body?” “The prana is the  introductory hymn, the apana is hymn and the vyana is the  eulogistic hymn.”  “What does he (the sacrificer) win through them?”  “Through the introductory hymn he wins the earth, through the  sacrificial hymn he wins the sky and through the eulogistic  hymn he wins heaven.  Thereupon the priest Asvala held his peace.

Chapter II�Yajnavalkya and Artabhaga 

1.    Then Artabhaga, of the line of Jaratkaru, questioned him.  “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “how many grahas (organs) are there  and how many atigrahas (objects)?”  “Eight grahas,” he replied, “and eight atigrahas.”  “And which are these eight grahas and eight atigrahas?”

2.    “The Prana (the nose), indeed, is the graha; it is controlled by  the apana (odour), the atigraha; for one smells odours through  apana (the air breathed in).

3.    “The vak (the organ of speech), indeed, is the graha; it is  controlled by the atigraha, name; for one utters names through  the organ of speech.

4.    “The tongue, indeed, is the graha; it is controlled by the  atigraha, taste; for one knows tastes by the tongue.

5.    “The eye, indeed, is the graha; it is controlled by the atigraha  colour; for one sees colours through the eye.

6.    “The ear, indeed, is the graha; it is controlled by the atigraha  sound; for one hears sounds with the ear.

7.    “The mind, indeed, is the graha; it is controlled by the atigraha  desire; for through the mind one cherishes desires.

8.    “The hands, indeed, are the graha; they are controlled by the  atigraha, work; for one performs work by means of the hands.

9.    “The skin, indeed, is the graha; it is controlled by the atigraha,  touch; for one feels touch through the skin. These are the eight  grahas and eight atigrahas.”

10.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “since all this is the food of death, who,  pray, is that god to whom death is the food?”  “Fire, indeed, is death; it is the food of water. One who knows  this conquers further death.”

11.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “when this liberated person dies, do his  organs de

Part from him or not?”  “No,” replied Yajnavalkya, “they merge in him only. The body  swells, is inflated and in that state the dead body lies at rest.”

12.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “when such a man dies, what is it that  does not leave him?”  “The name. For the name is infinite and infinite are the Visve�  devas. He who knows this wins thereby an infinite world.”

13.    “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “when the vocal organ of this dead  person merges in fire, the nose in air, the eye in the sun, the  mind in the moon, the ear in the quarters, the body in the earth,  the akasa (space) in the heart in the external akasa, the hair on  the body in the herbs, the hair on the head in the trees and the  blood and semen are deposited in water, where is that person  then?”  Yajnavalkya said: “Give me your hand, dear Artabhaga. We  shall decide this between ourselves; we cannot do it in a  crowd.”  Then they went out and deliberated and what they talked about  was karma (work) and what they praised was karma: one  becomes good through good karma and evil through evil  karma.  Thereupon Artabhaga, of the line of Jaratkaru, held his peace.

Chapter III�Yajnavalkya and Bhujyu 

1.    Next Bhujyu, the grandson of Lahya, questioned him.  “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “we were travelling in the country of  Madra as religious students, when we came to the house of  Patanchala, of the line of Kapi. His daughter was possessed by  a gandharva.  We asked him: ‘Who are you?’ He said: ‘I am Sudhanvan, of the  line of Angiras.’ While asking him about the limits of the  world, we said: ‘Where were the descendants of Parikshit?’ And  likewise I ask you, Yajnavalkya, where were the descendants of  Parikshit? Tell me, where were the descendants of Parikshit?”

2.    Yajnavalkya said: “The gandharva, I suppose, told you that  they went where those who perform the Horse�sacrifice go.”  “And where do they go who have performed the Horse�  sacrifice?”  “Thirty�two times the space traversed by the sun’s chariot in a  day makes this plane (loka); around it, covering twice the area,  is the world (prithivi); around the world, covering twice the  area, is the ocean. Now, as is the edge of a razor or the wing of  a fly, so is there just that much space between the two halves of  the cosmic shell. Through that opening they go out. “Fire, in  the form of a falcon, delivered them to Vayu. Vayu, placing  them in itself, took them where previous performers of the  Horse�sacrifice were.”  Thus did the gandharva praise Vayu. Therefore Vayu alone is  the aggregate of all individuals. He who knows this, as stated  above, conquers further death.  Thereupon Bhujyu, the grandson of Lahya, held his peace.

Chapter IV�Yajnavalkya and Ushasta 

1.    Then Ushasta, the son of Chakra, questioned him.  “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “explain to me the Brahman that is  immediately and directly perceived�the self that is within  all.”  “This is your self that is within all.”  “Which self is within all, Yajnavalkya?”  “That which breathes through the prana is your self that is  within all. That which moves downward through the apana is  your self that is within all. That which pervades through the  vyana is your self that is within all. That which goes out with  the udana is your self that is within all. This is your self that is  within all.”

2.    Ushasta, the son of Chakra, said: “You have explained it as one  might say: ‘Such is a cow,’ ‘Such is a horse.’ Tell me precisely  the Brahman that is immediate and direct�the self that is  within all.”  “This is your self that is within all.”  “Which is within all, Yajnavalkya?”  “You cannot see the seer of seeing; you cannot hear the hearer  of hearing; you cannot think of the thinker of thinking; you  cannot know the knower of knowing. This is your self that is  within all; everything else but this is perishable.”  Thereupon Ushasta, the son of Chakra, held his peace.

Chapter V�Yajnavalkya and Kahola 

1.    Next Kahola, the son of Kushitaka, questioned him.  “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “explain to me the Brahman that is  directly and immediately perceived�the self that is within  all.”  “This is your self that is within all.”  “Which self is within all, Yajnavalkya?”  “It is that which transcends hunger and thirst, grief, delusion,  old age and death. Having realized this Self, brahmins give up  the desire for sons, the desire for wealth and the desire for the  worlds and lead the life of religious mendicants. That which is  the desire for sons is the desire for wealth and that which is the  desire for wealth is the desire for the worlds; for both these are but desires.  Therefore a brahmin, after he is done with scholarship, should  try to live on that strength which comes of scholarship. After he  is done with that strength and scholarship, he becomes  meditative and after he is done with both meditativeness and  non�meditativeness, he becomes a knower of Brahman.  “How does the knower of Brahman behave? Howsoever he  may behave, he is such indeed.  Everything else but this is perishable.”  Thereupon Kahola, the son of Kushitaka, held his peace.

Chapter VI�Yajnavalkya and Gargi (I) 

1.    Then Gargi, the daughter of Vachaknu, questioned him.  “Yajnavalkya ,” said she, “if all this is pervaded by water, by  what, pray, is water pervaded?”  “By air, O Gargi.”  “By what, pray, is air pervaded?”  “By the sky, O Gargi.”  “By what is the sky pervaded?”  “By the world of the gandharvas, O Gargi.”  “By what is the world of the gandharvas pervaded?”  “By the world of the sun, O Gargi.  “By what is the world of the sun pervaded?”  “By the world of the moon, O Gargi.”  “By what is the world of the moon pervaded?”  “By the world of the stars, O Gargi.”  “By what is the world of the stars pervaded?”  “By the world of the gods, O Gargi.”  “By what is the world of the gods pervaded?”  “By the world of Indra, O Gargi.  “By what is the world of Indra pervaded?”  “By the World of Virij, O Gargi.  “By what is the World of Virij pervaded?”  “By the World of Hiranyagarbha, O Gargi.”  “By what, pray, is the World of Hiranyagarbha pervaded?”  “Do not, O Gargi,” said he, “question too much, lest your head  should fall off. You are questioning too much about a deity  about whom we should not ask too much. Do not ask too much,  O Gargi.”  Thereupon Gargi, the daughter of Vachaknu, held her peace.

Chapter VII�Yajnavalkya and Uddalaka 

1.    Then Uddalaka, the son of Aruna, questioned him.  “Yajnavalkya,” said he, “in the country of Madra we lived in  the house of Patanchala, of the line of Kapi, studying the  scriptures on the sacrifices. His wife was possessed by a  gandharva. We asked him: ‘Who are you?’ He said: ‘I am  Kabandha, the son of Atharvan.’ He said to Patanchala  Kapya and those studying the scriptures on the sacrifices: ‘O  descendant of Kapi, do you know that Sutra by which this  world, the other world and all beings are held together?’  Patanchala Kapya said: ‘I do not know it, venerable Sir.’ Then  he said to Patanchala Kapya and those studying the scriptures  on the sacrifices: ‘O descendant of Kapi, do you know that  Inner Controller who controls this world, the next world and all  beings?’ Patanchala Kapya said: ‘I do not know him, venerable  Sir.’ Then he said to Patanchala Kapya and those studying the  scriptures on the sacrifices: ‘O descendant of Kapi, he who  knows that Sutra and that Inner Controller indeed knows  Brahman; he knows the worlds, he knows the gods, he knows  the Vedas, he knows the beings, he knows the self, he  knows everything.’ He explained it all to them and I know it. If  you, Yajnavalkya, do not know that Sutra and that Inner  Controller and still take away the cows that belong only to the  knowers of Brahman, your head will fall off.”  “I know, O Gautama, that Sutra and that Inner Controller.”  “Anyone might say: ‘I know, I know.’ Tell us what you know.”

2.    Yajnavalkya said: “Vayu, O Gautama, is that Sutra. By Vayu,  as by a thread, O Gautama, are this world, the other world and  all beings held together. Therefore, O Gautama, they say of a  person who dies that his limbs have been loosened; for they are  held together by Vayu as by a thread.”  “Quite so, Yajnavalkya. Now describe the Inner Controller.”

3.    Yajnavalkya said: “He who inhabits the earth, yet is within the  earth, whom the earth does not know, whose body the earth is  and who controls the earth from within�He is your Self, the  Inner Controller, the Immortal.

4�14.    “He who inhabits water, yet is within water, whom water does  not know, whose body water is and who controls water from  within�He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits fire, yet is within fire, whom fire does not  know, whose body fire is and who controls fire from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the sky, yet is within the sky, whom the sky  does not know, whose body the sky is and who controls the sky from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal. “He who  inhabits the air, yet is within the air, whom the air does not  know, whose body the air is and who controls the air from  within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits heaven, yet is within heaven, whom heaven  does not know, whose body heaven is and who controls heaven  from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the sun, yet is within the sun, whom the sun  does not know, whose body the sun is and who controls the sun  from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the quarters of space, yet is within them,  whom the quarters do not know, whose  body the quarters are and who controls the quarters from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the moon and stars, yet is within the moon  and stars, whom the moon and stars do not know, whose body  the moon and stars are and who controls the moon and stars  from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the akasa, yet is within the akasa, whom the  akasa does not know, whose body the akasa is and who controls  the akasa from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits darkness, yet is within darkness, whom  darkness does not know, whose body darkness is and who  controls darkness from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits light, yet is within light, whom light does not  know, whose body light is and who controls light from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.”  This much with reference to the gods (adhidaivatam). Now  with reference to beings (adhibhutam).

15.    Yajnavalkya said: “He who inhabits all beings, yet is within all  beings, whom no beings know, whose body all beings are and  who controls all beings from within�He is your Self, the  Inner Controller, the Immortal.”  This much with reference to the beings. Now with reference to  the body.

16.    Yajnavalkya said: “He who inhabits the nose (prana), yet is  within the nose, whom the nose does not know, whose body the  nose is and who controls the nose from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the organ of speech, yet is within speech,  whom speech does not know, whose body speech is and who  controls speech from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the eye, yet is within the eye, whom the eye  does not know, whose body the eye is and who controls the eye  from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the ear, yet is within the ear, whom the ear  does not know, whose body the ear is and who controls the ear  from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the mind, yet is within the mind, whom the  mind does not know, whose body the mind is and who controls  the mind from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the skin, yet is within the skin, whom the skin  does not know, whose body the skin is and who controls the  skin from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the intellect (vijnana), yet is within the  intellect, whom the intellect does not know, whose body the  intellect is and who controls the intellect from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He who inhabits the organ of generation, yet is within the  organ, whom the organ does not know, whose body the organ is  and who controls the organ from within  �He is your Self, the Inner Controller, the Immortal.  “He is never seen, but is the Seer; He is never heard, but is the  Hearer; He is never thought of, but is the Thinker; He is never  known, but is the Knower. There is no other seer than He, there  is no other hearer than He, there is no other thinker than He,  there is no other knower than He. He is your Self, the Inner  Controller, the Immortal. Everything else but Him is  perishable.”  Thereupon Uddilaka, the son of Aruna, held his peace.

Chapter VIII�Yajnavalkya and Gargi (II) 

1.    Then the daughter of Vachaknu said: ‘Venerable brahmins, I  shall ask him two questions. If he answers me these, then none  of you can defeat him in discussing Brahman.”  The brahmins said: “Ask, O Gargi.”

2.    Gargi said: “O Yajnavalkya, I shall ask you two questions:  As a man of Kasi or the King of Videha, scion of a heroic line,  might string his unstrung bow, take in his hand two bamboo�  tipped arrows highly painful to enemies and approach his  enemies closely, even so, O Yajnavalkya, do I confront you  with two questions. Answer me these.”  “Ask, O Gargi.”

3.    She said: “O Yajnavalkya, what pervades that Sutra which is  above heaven and below the earth, which is heaven and earth as  well as what is between them and which�they say�was, is  and will be?”

4.    He said: “That, O Gargi, which is above heaven and below the  earth, which is heaven and earth as well as what is between  them and which�they say�was, is and will be, is pervaded by  the unmanifested akasa.

5.    She said: “I bow to you, O Yajnavalkya. You have fully  answered this question of mine. Now brace yourself for the  other.”  “Ask, O Gargi.”

6�7.    She said: “Yajnavalkya, what pervades that Sutra which is  above heaven and below the earth, which is heaven and earth as  well as what is between them and which�they say�was, is  and will be?”  He said: “That, O Gargi, which is above heaven and below the  earth, which is heaven and earth as well as what is between  them and which�they say�was, is and will be, is pervaded by  the unmanifested akasa.”  “What pervades the akasa?”

8.    He said: “That, O Gargi, the knowers of Brahman call the  Imperishable. It is neither gross nor subtle, neither short nor  long, neither red nor moist; It is neither shadow nor darkness,  neither air nor akasa; It is unattached; It is without taste or  smell, without eyes or ears, without tongue or mind; It is non�effulgent, without vital breath or mouth, without measure and  without exterior or interior. It does not eat anything, nor is It  eaten by anyone.

9.    “Verily, under the mighty rule of this Imperishable, O Gargi,  the sun and moon are held in their respective positions. Under  the mighty rule of this Imperishable, O Gargi, heaven and earth  are held in their respective positions. Under the mighty rule of  this Imperishable, O Gargi, moments, muhurtas (about forty�  eight minutes), days and nights, fortnights, months, seasons and  years are held in their respective positions. Under the mighty  rule of this Imperishable, O Gargi, some rivers flow eastward  from the white mountains, others flowing westward continue in  that direction and still others keep to their respective courses.  Under the mighty rule of this Imperishable, O Gargi, men  praise those who give, the gods depend upon the sacrificer and  the Manes upon the Darvi offering.

10.    “Whosoever in this world, O Gargi, without knowing this  Imperishable, offers oblations, performs sacrifices and practises  austerities, even for many thousands of years, finds all such  acts but perishable. Whosoever, O Gargi, departs from this  world without knowing this Imperishable is miserable. But he,  O Gargi, who departs from this world after knowing the  Imperishable is a knower of Brahman.

11.    “Verily, that Imperishable, O Gargi, is never seen but is the  Seer; It is never heard, but is the Hearer; It is never thought of,  but is the Thinker; It is never known, but is the Knower. There  is no other seer but This, there is no other hearer but This, there  is no other thinker but This, there is no other knower but This.  By this imperishable, O Gargi, is the unmanifested akasa  pervaded.”

12.    Then said Gargi: “Venerable brahmins, you may consider  yourselves fortunate if you can get off from him through  bowing to him. None of you, I believe, will defeat him in  arguments about Brahman.  Thereupon the daughter of Vachaknu held her peace.


Chapter IX�Yajnavalkya and Vidaghdha 

1.    Then Vidaghdha, the son of Sakala, asked him: “How many  gods are there, Yajnavalkya?”  Yajnavalkya ascertained the number through the group of  mantras known as the Nivid and said:  “As many as are mentioned in the Nivid of the Visve�devas�  three hundred and three and three  thousand and three.”  “Very good,” said Sakalya (the son of Sakala) and asked again:  “How many gods are there, Yajnavalkya?”  “Thirty�three.”  “Very good,” said Sakalya and asked again:  “How many gods are there, Yajnavalkya?”  “Six.”  “Very good,” said Sakalya and asked again:  “How many gods are there, Yajnavalkya?”  “Three.”  “Very good,” said Sakalya and asked again:  “How many gods are there, Yajnavalkya?”  “Two.”  “Very good,” said Sakalya and asked again:  “How many gods are there, Yajnavalkya?”  “One and a half.”  “Very good,” said Sakalya and asked again:  “How many gods are there, Yajnavalkya?”  “One.”  “Very good,” said Sakalya and asked:  “Which are those three hundred and three and those three  thousand and three?”

2.    Yajnavalkya said: “There are only thirty�three gods. These  others are but manifestations of them.”  “Which are these thirty�three?”  “The eight Vasus, the eleven Rudras and the twelve Adityas�  these are thirty�one. And Indra and  Prajapati make up the thirty�three.”

3.    “Which are the Vasus?” asked Sakalya.  “Fire, the earth, the air, the sky, the sun, heaven, the moon and  the stars�these are the Vasus; for in  them all this universe is placed (vasavah). Therefore they are  called Vasus.  150

4.    “Which are the Rudras?” asked Sakalya.  “The ten organs in the human body, with the mind as the  eleventh. When they depart from this  mortal body, they make one’s relatives weep. Because they  make them weep (rud), therefore they  are called Rudras.

5.    “Which are the Adityas?” asked Sakalya.  “There are twelve months in the year. These are the Adityas,  because they move along carrying  (adadanah) all this with them; therefore they are called  Adityas.”

6.    “Which is Indra and which is Prajapati?” asked Sakalya.  “The thunderclap is Indra and the sacrifice is Prajapati.”  “Which is the thunderclap?”  “The thunderbolt.”  “Which is the sacrifice?”  “The animals.”

7.    “Which are the six gods?” asked Sakalya.  “Fire, the earth, the air, the sky, the sun and heaven; for these  six comprise all those.”

8.    “Which are the three gods?” asked Sakalya.  “These three worlds, because all those gods are comprised in  these three.”  “Which are the two gods?”  “Matter and the vital breath (prana).”  “Which are the one and a half?”  “This air that blows.”

9.    Yajnavalkya said: “Concerning this some say: ‘Since the air  blows as one substance, how can it be  one and a half (adhyardha)?’ The answer is: It is one and a half  because by its presence everything  attains surpassing glory (adhyardhnot).”  “Which is the one God?”  “The vital breath (Hiranyagarbha); it is Brahman which is  called That (Tyat).”

10.    Sakalya said: “Verily, whosoever knows that Being whose  body is the earth, whose organ of vision  is fire, whose light is the mind and who is the ultimate support  of the body and organs in their  entirety, he indeed knows, O Yajnavalkya.”  “I know that Being of whom you speak�who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety. It is the Being who is in this body. Go on, Sakalya.”  “Who is His deity (cause)?”  “Nectar (chyle),” said Yajnavalkya.

11.    Sakalya said: “Verily, whosoever knows that Being whose  body is lust (kama), whose organ of  vision is the intellect, whose light is the mind and who is the  ultimate support of the body and  organs in their entirety, he indeed knows, O Yajnavalkya.”  “I know that Being of whom you speak�who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety. It is the Being who is identified with lust. Go on,  Sakalya.”  “Who is His deity?”  “Women,” said Yajnavalkya.

12.    Sakalya said: “Verily, whosoever knows that Being whose  body is colours, whose organ of vision is  the eye, whose light is the mind and who is the ultimate support  of the body and organs in their  entirety, he indeed knows, O Yajnavalkya.”  “I know that Being of whom you speak�who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety. It is the Being who is in the sun. Go on, Sakalya.”  “Who is His deity?”  “Truth (the eye),” said Yajnavalkya.

13.    Sakalya said: “Verily, whosoever knows that Being whose  body is the akasa, whose organ of vision  is the ear, whose light is the mind and who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety, he indeed knows, O Yajnavalkya.”   “I know that Being of whom you speak�who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety. It is the Being who is identified with the ear and with  the time of hearing. Go on, Sakalya.”  “Who is His deity?”  “The quarters,” said Yajnavalkya.

14.    Sakalya said: “Verily, whosoever knows that Being whose  body is darkness, whose organ of vision  is the intellect, whose light is the mind and who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in  their entirety, he indeed knows, O Yajnavalkya.”  “I know that Being of whom you speak�who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety. It is the Being who is identified with shadow  (ignorance). Go on, Sakalya.”  “Who is His deity?”  “Death,” said Yajnavalkya.

15.    Sakalya said: “Verily, whosoever knows that Being whose  body is particular colours, whose organ  of vision is the eye, whose light is the mind and who is the  ultimate support of the body and organs  in their entirety, he indeed knows, O Yajnavalkya.”  “I know that Being of whom you speak�who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety. It is the being who is in the mirror. Go on, Sakalya.”  “Who is His deity?”  “The vital breath,” said Yajnavalkya.

16.    Sakalya said: “Verily, whosoever knows that Being whose  body is water, whose organ of vision is  the intellect, whose light is the mind and who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety, he indeed knows, O Yajnavalkya.”  “I know that Being of whom you speak�who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety. It is the Being who is in water. Go on, Sakalya.”  “Who is His deity?”  “Varuna (rain),” said Yajnavalkya.

17.    Sakalya said: “Verily, whosoever knows that Being whose  body is semen, whose organ of vision is  the intellect, whose light is the mind and who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety, he indeed knows, O Yajnavalkya.”  “I know that Being of whom you speak�who is the ultimate  support of the body and organs in their  entirety. It is the Being who is identified with the son. Go on,  Sakalya.”  “Who is His deity?”  “Prajapati (the father),” said Yajnavalkya.

18.    When Sakalya kept silent Yajnavalkya addressed him thus:  “Sakalya, have these brahmins made you their instrument such  as tongs for burning charcoal?”

19�20.    “Yajnavalkya,” said Sakalya, “what Brahman do you know,  that you have thus flouted these Vedic  scholars of Kuru and Panchala?”  Yajnavalkya replied: “I know the quarters, with their deities  and supports.”  Sakalya said: “If you know the quarters, with their deities and  supports, what deity are you  identified with in the east?”  “With the deity sun.”  “In what does the sun find its support?”  “The eye.  “In what does the eye find its support?”  “Colours, for one sees colours with the eye.”  “In what do colours find their support?”  “The heart (mind),” said Yajnavalkya, “for one knows colours  through the heart. Therefore it is in  the heart that colours find their support.”  “Just so, Yajnavalkya.”

21.    “Yajnavalkya,” said Sakalya, “what deity are you identified  with in the south?”  “With the deity Yama (the god of justice).”  “In what does Yama find his support?”  “The sacrifice.”  “In what does the sacrifice find its support?”  “The remuneration of the priests.”   “In what does the remuneration find its support?”  “Faith, for when a man has faith he remunerates the priest.  Therefore it is in faith that the  remuneration finds its support.”  “In what does faith find its support?”  “The heart (mind),” said Yajnavalkya, “for one knows faith  through the heart. Therefore it is in the  heart that faith finds its support.”  “Just so, Yajnavalkya.”

22.    “Yajnavalkya,” said Sakalya, “what deity are you identified  with in the west?”  “With the deity Varuna (the god of rain).”  “In what does Varuna find his support?”  “Water.”  “In what does water find its support?”  “Semen.”  “In what does semen find its support?”  “The heart,” said Yajnavalkya. “Therefore they say of a new�  born child who resembles his father  that it seems as if he has sprung from his father’s heart�that he  has been created of his father’s  heart, as it were. Therefore it is in the heart that semen finds its  support.”  “Just so, Yajnavalkya.”

23.    “Yajnavalkya,” said Sakalya, “what deity are you identified  with in the north?”  “With the deity Soma (the moon and the creeper of that name).”  “In what does Soma find its support?”  “The initiatory rite.”  “In what does initiation find its support?”  “Truth. Therefore they say to the one who is initiated: ‘Speak  the truth’; for it is in the truth that  initiation finds its support.”  “In what does the truth find its support?”  “The heart,” said Yajnavalkya, “for through the heart one  knows the truth; therefore it is in the heart  that the truth finds its support.”  “Just so, Yajnavalkya.”

24.    “What deity,” said Sakalya, “are you identified with in the fixed  direction (i.e. overhead)?”  “With the deity fire.”  “In what does fire find its support?”  “Speech.”  “In what does speech find its support?”  “The heart.”  “In what does the heart find its support?”

25.    “You ghost,” said Yajnavalkya, “that you think that the heart  should be elsewhere than in ourselves!  If it were elsewhere than in ourselves, dogs would eat this body  or birds tear it to pieces.”

26.    “In what do the body and the heart find their support?” asked  Sakalya.  “In the prana.”  “In what does the prana find its support?”  “In the apana.”  “In what does the apana find its support?”  “In the vyana.”  “In what does the vyana find its support?”  “In the udana.”  “In what does the udana find its support?”  “In the samana.”  Here the Upanishad itself states:  This self is That which has been described as “Not this, not  this.”  It is imperceptible, for It is never perceived; undecaying, for It  never decays; unattached, for It is  never attached; unfettered, for It never feels pain and never  suffers injury.  Yajnavalkya said: “These are the eight abodes, the eight organs  of vision, the eight deities and the  eight beings.  “Now I ask you about that Person who is to be known only  from the Upanishads, who definitely  projects those beings and again withdraws them into Himself  and who is at the same time  transcendental.  “If you cannot clearly explain Him to me, your head shall fall  off?’ Sakalya did not know Him; his  head fell off; and robbers snatched away his bones, mistaking  them for something else.

27.    Then Yajnavalkya said: “Venerable brahmins, whosoever  among you wishes to question me may now do so, or all of you may. Or whosoever among you desires  it, I shall question him, or I shall  question all of you.  But the brahmins did not dare.

28.    Yajnavalkya interrogated them with the following verses:  1. As is a mighty tree, so indeed is a man: this is true. His  hairs are the leaves and his skin is the outer bark.  2. From his skin blood flows and from the bark, sap.  Therefore when a man is Wounded blood flows, as sap  from a tree that is injured.  3. His flesh is its inner bark and his nerves are its  innermost layer of bark, which is tough. His bones lie  within, as does the wood of the tree. His marrow  resembles the pith.  4. A tree, when it is felled, springs again from its root in a  new form; from what root, tell me, does a man spring  forth after he is cut off by death?  5. Do not say: From the semen, for that is produced from  the living man. A tree springs from the seed as well;  after it is dead it certainly springs again.  6. If a tree is pulled up with its root, it will not spring  again. From what root, tell me, does a mortal spring  forth after he is cut off by death?  7. If you think he is indeed born, I say: No, he is born  again. Now who should again bring him forth?  The Upanishad states: It is Brahman, which is absolute  Knowledge and Bliss, the ultimate goal of  him who offers wealth and also of him who has realized  Brahman and stands firm in It.

Part Four

Chapter I�Partial Definitions of Brahman 

1.    Om. Janaka, Emperor of Videha, was seated to give audience  when Yajnavalkya arrived. The Emperor said to him:  “Yajnavalkya, for what purpose have you come here? With a  desire for cattle, or to hear some subtle questions asked?”  “For both, Your Majesty,” said he.

2.    Yajnavalkya said: “Let me hear what anyone among your  teachers may have told you.”  “Jitvan, the son of Silina, told me that the organ of speech (fire)  is Brahman.”  “As anyone who had the benefit of being taught by a good  mother, father and teacher should say, so did the son of Silina  say that the organ of speech is Brahman; for what can be  attained by a person who cannot speak? But did he tell you  about its abode (body) and support?”  “No, he did not.”  “This Brahman is only one�footed, Your Majesty.”  “Then you tell us, O Yajnavalkya.”  �The physical organ of speech is its abode and the akasa is its  support. It should be mediated upon as intelligence.�  �What is intelligence, O Yajnavalkya?�  �It is the organ of speech, Your Majesty,� said Yajnavalkya.  �Through the organ of speech alone, O Emperor, are known the  Rig�Veda, the Yagur�Veda, the Sama�Veda, the  Atharvangirasa, history, ancient lore, the arts, the Upanishads,  verses, aphorisms, explanations, commentaries, the results of  sacrifices, the result of offering oblations in the fire, the results  of giving food and drink, this world, the next world and all  beings.  �The organ of speech, Your Majesty, is the Supreme Brahman.  The organ of speech never deserts him who, knowing this,  meditates upon it; all beings eagerly approach him; and being a  god, he attains the gods.�  �I give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an  elephant,� said Emperor Janaka.  Yajnavalkya replied: �My father was of the opinion that one  should not accept gifts from a disciple without fully instructing  him.�

3.    Yajnavalkya said: “Let me hear what anyone among your  teachers may have told you.”  “Udanka, the son of Sulba, told me that the vital breath (prana)  is Brahman.”  “As anyone who had the benefit of being taught by a good  mother, father and teacher should say, so did the son of Sulba  say that the vital breath is Brahman; for what can be attained by  a person who does not live? But did he tell you about its abode  and support?”  “No, he did not.”  “This Brahman is only one�footed, Your Majesty.”  “Then you tell us, O Yajnavalkya.”  “The vital breath is its abode and the akasa is its support. It should be meditated upon as dear.”  “What is that dearness, O Yajnavalkya?”  “It is the vital breath, Your Majesty,” said Yajnavalkya. “For  the sake of that vital breath (life), O Emperor, one performs  sacrifices for him for whom they should not be performed and  accepts gifts from him from whom they should not be accepted;  nay, for the sake of the vital breath, O Emperor, one may go to  a quarter where one runs the risk of losing one�s life.  “The vital breath, O Emperor, is the Supreme Brahman. The  vital breath never deserts him who, knowing what has just been  said, meditates upon it; all beings eagerly approach him; and  being a god, he attains the gods.”  “I give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an  elephant,” said Emperor Janaka.  Yajnavalkya replied: “My father was of the opinion that one  should not accept gifts from a disciple without fully instructing  him.”

4.    Yajnavalkya said: “Let me hear what anyone among your  teachers may have told you.  “Barku, the son of Vrishna, told me that the eye is Brahman.”  “As anyone who had the benefit of being taught by a good  mother, father and teacher should say, so did the son of Vrishna  say that the eye is Brahman; for what can be attained by a  person who cannot see? But did he tell you about its abode and  support?”  “No, he did not.”  “This Brahman is only one�footed, Your Majesty.”  “Then you tell us, O Yajnavalkya.”  “The eye is its abode and the akasa is its support. It should be  meditated upon as truth.”  “What is truth, O Yajnavalkya?”  “It is the eye, Your Majesty,” said Yajnavalkya. “Verily, Your  Majesty, if one asks a person who has seen with his eyes:  �Have you seen?� and he answers: �Yes, I have,� then it is true.  “The eye, Your Majesty, is the Supreme Brahman. The eye  never deserts him who, knowing what has just been said,  meditates upon it; all beings eagerly approach him; and being a  god, he attains the gods.”  “I give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an  elephant,” said Emperor Janaka.  Yajnavalkya replied: “My father was of the opinion that one  should not accept gifts from a disciple without fully instructing  him.”

5.    Yajnavalkya said: “Let me hear what anyone among your  teachers may have told you.”  “Gardabhivipita, a descendant of Bharadvaja, told me that the  ear is Brahman.”  “As anyone who had the benefit of being taught by a good  mother, father and teacher should say, so did the descendant of  Bharadvaja say that the ear is Brahman; for what can be  attained by a person who cannot hear? But did he tell you about  its abode and support?”  “No, he did not.”  “This Brahman is only one�footed, Your Majesty.”  “Then you tell us, O Yajnavalkya.”  “The ear is its abode and the akasa is its support. It should be  meditated upon as infinite.”  “What is infinity, O Yajnavalkya?”  “It is the quarters, Your Majesty,” said Yajnavalkya. “Verily,  Your Majesty, to whatever quarter (direction) one may go, one  never reaches its end. Hence the quarters are infinite. The  quarters, O Emperor, are the ear and the ear, O Emperor, is the  Supreme Brahman.  “The ear never deserts him who, knowing this, meditates upon  it; all beings eagerly approach him; and being a god, he attains  the gods.”  “I give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an  elephant,” said Emperor Janaka.  Yajnavalkya replied: “My father was of the opinion that one  should not accept gifts from a disciple without fully instructing  him.”

6.    Yajnavalkya said: “Let me hear what anyone among your  teachers may have told you.”  “Satyakama, the son of Jabala, told me that the mind is  Brahman.”  “As anyone who had the benefit of being taught by a good  mother, father and teacher should say, so did the son of Jaa say  that the mind is Brahman; for what can be attained by a person  who has no mind? But did he tell you about its abode and  support?”  “No, he did not.”  “This Brahman is only one�footed, Your Majesty.”  “Then you tell us, O Yajnavalkya.”  “The mind is its abode and the akasa is its support. It should be  meditated upon as bliss.”  “What is bliss, O Yajnavalkya?”  “It is the mind, Your Majesty,” said Yajnavdkya. “Verily, Your  Majesty, with the mind a man desires and woos a woman; then  160  a son resembling him is born of her and he is the cause of bliss.  The mind, O Emperor, is the Supreme Brahman.  “The mind never deserts him who, knowing this, meditates  upon it; all beings eagerly approach him; and being a god, he  attains the gods.”  “I give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an  elephant,” said Emperor Janaka.  Yajnavalkya replied: “My father was of the opinion that one  should not accept gifts from a disciple without fully instructing  him.”

7.    Yajnavalkya said: “Let me hear what anyone among your  teachers may have told you.”  “Vidaghdha, the son of Sakala, told me that the heart is  Brahman.”  “As anyone who had the benefit of being taught by a good  mother, father and teacher should say, so did the son of Sakala  say that the heart is Brahman; for what can be attained by a  person who is without a heart? But did he tell you about its  abode and support?”  “No, he did not.”  “This Brahman is only one�footed, Your Majesty.”  “Then you tell us, O Yajnavalkya.”  “The heart is its abode and the akasa is its support. It should be  meditated upon as stability.”  “What is stability, O Yajnavalkya?”  “It is the heart,” said Yajnavalkya. “Verily, Your Majesty, the  heart is the abode of all beings and the heart, Your Majesty, is  the support of all beings. The heart, O Emperor, is the Supreme  Brahman.  “The heart never deserts him who, knowing this, meditates  upon it; all beings eagerly approach him; and being a god, he  attains the gods.”  “I give you a thousand cows with a bull as large as an  elephant,” said Emperor Janaka.  Yajnavalkya replied: “My father was of the opinion that one  should not accept gifts from a disciple without fully instructing  him.”

Chapter II�Concerning The Self 

1.    Janaka, Emperor of Videha, rose from his lounge, humbly  approached Yajnavalkya and said: “Salutation to you, O  Yajnavalkya. Please instruct me.”  Yajnavalkya said: “Your Majesty, as one who wishes to go a  long distance would procure a chariot or a ship, even so you have fully equipped your mind with so many secret names of  Brahman. You are also honoured and wealthy; you have  studied the Vedas and heard the Upanishads. But do you know  where you will go when you are released from this body?”  “Venerable Sir, I do not know where I shall go.”  “Then I will tell you where you will go.”  “Tell me, venerable Sir.”

2.    “The person who is in the right eye is named Indha. Though he  is Indha, people call him by the indirect name Indra; for the  gods are fond of indirect names and hate to be addressed  directly.

3.    “The person who is in the left eye is his wife, Viraj (matter).  The akasa that lies within the heart is their place of union. Their  food is the lump (pinda) of blood in the heart. Their wrap is the  net�like structure in the heart. The path on which they move  from sleep to waking is the nerve that goes upward from the  heart; it is like a hair split into a thousand

Parts. In the body  there are nerves called hita, which are placed in the heart.  Through these the essence of our food passes as it moves on.  Therefore the subtle body (Taijasa) receives finer food than the  gross body (Vaisvanara).

4.    “Of the illumined sage who is identified with Prajna in deep  sleep the east is the eastern vital breath (prana), the south is the  southern vital breath, the west is the western vital breath, the  north is the northern vital breath, the upper direction is the  upper vital breath, the direction below is the nether vital breath  and all the directions are all the vital breaths.  “This self is That which has been described as �Not this, not  this.� It is imperceptible, for It is never perceived; undecaying,  for It never decays; unattached, for It is never attached;  unfettered, for It never feels pain and never suffers injury.  “Verily, O Janaka, you have attained That which is free from  fear,” said Yajnavalkya.  “Venerable Yajnavalkya,” said Emperor Janaka, “may that  fearless Brahman be yours too, for you have made known to us  the fearless Brahman. Salutations to you! Here is the Empire of  Videha and also myself at your service.”

Chapter III�Investigation of the Three States 

1.    Yajnavalkya called on Janaka, Emperor of Videha. He said to  himself: “I will not say anything.”  But once upon a time Janaka, Emperor of Videha and  Yajnavalkya had had a talk about the Agnihotra sacrifice and  Yajnavalkya had offered him a boon. Janaka had chosen the  right to ask him any questions he wished and Yajnavalkya had  granted him the boon.  So it was the Emperor who first questioned him.

2.    “Yajnavalkya, what serves as light for a man?”  “The light of the sun, O Emperor,” said Yajnavalkya, “for with  the sun as light he sits, goes out, works and returns.”  “Just so, Yajnavalkya.”

3.    “When the sun has set, Yajnavalkya, what serves as light for a  man?”  “The moon serves as his light, for with the moon as light he  sits, goes out, works and returns.”  “Just so, Yajnavalkya.”

4.    “When the sun has set and the moon has set, Yajnavalkya, what  serves as light for a man?”  “Fire serves as his light, for with fire as light he sits, goes out,  works and returns.”  “Just so, Yajnavalkya.”

5.    “When the sun has set, Yajnavalkya and the moon has set and  the fire has gone out, what serves as light for a man?”  “Speech (sound) serves as his light, for with speech as light he  sits, goes out, works and returns. Therefore, Your Majesty,  when one cannot see even one�s own hand, yet when a sound is  uttered, one can go there.”  “Just so, Yajnavalkya.”

6.    “When the sun has set, Yajnavalkya and the moon has set and  the fire has gone out and speech has stopped, what serves as  light for a man?”  “The self, indeed, is his light, for with the self as light he sits,  goes out, works and returns.”

7.    “Which is the self?”  “This purusha which is identified with the intellect  (vijnanamaya) and is in the midst of the orgams, the self�  indulgent light within the heart (intellect). Assuming the  likeness of the intellect, it wansers between the two worlds; it  thinks, as it were and moves, as it were being indetified with  dreasm, it trasncends this waking world, which represents the  forms of death (ignorance and its effects).

8.    “That person (the individual self), when he is born, that is to  say, when he assumes a body, is joined with evils and when he  dies, that is to say, leaves the body, he discards those evils.

9.    “And there are only two states for that person: the one here in  this world and the other in the next world. The third, the  intermediate, is the dream state. When he is in that intermediate  state, he surveys both states: the one here in this world and the  other in the next world. Now, whatever support he may have  for the next world, he provides himself with that and sees both  evils (sufferings) and joys.  “And when he dreams, he takes away a little of the impressions  of this all�embracing world (the waking state), himself makes  the body unconscious and creates a dream body in its place,  revealing his own brightness by his own light�and he dreams.  In this state the person becomes self�illumined.

10.    “There are no real chariots in that state, nor animals to be yoked  to them, nor roads there, but he creates the chariots, animals  and roads. There are no pleasures in that state, no joys, no  rejoicings, but he creates the pleasures, joys and rejoicings.  There are no pools in that state, no reservoirs, no rivers, but he  creates the pools, reservoirs and rivers. He indeed is the agent.

11.    “Regarding this there are the following verses:  �The effulgent infinite being (purusha), who travels alone,  makes the body insensible in sleep but himself remains awake and taking with him the luminous particles of the organs,  watches those which lie dormant. Again he comes to the  waking state.

12.    �The effulgent infinite being (purusha), who is immortal and  travels alone, guards the unclean nest (body) with the help of  the vital breath (prana) and himself moves out of the nest. That  immortal entity wanders wherever he likes.

13.    �In the dream world, the luminous one attains higher and lower  states and creates many forms�now, as it were, enjoying  himself in the company of women, now laughing, now even  beholding frightful sights.

14.    �Everyone sees his sport but him no one sees.� They say: �Do  not wake him suddenly.� If he does not find the right organ, the  body becomes difficult to doctor.

15.    Yajnavalkya said: “Tha entity (purusha), after enjoying himself  and raoming in the dream state and merely witnessing the  results of good and evil, remians in a state of profound sleep  and then hastens back in the reverse way to his former  condition, the dream state. He remains unaffected by whatever  he sees in that dream state, for this infinite being is unattached.”  Janaka said: “Just so, Yajnavalkya. I give you, Sir, a thousand  cows.  Please instruct me further about Liberation itself.

16.    “Yajnavalkya said: “That entity (purusha), after enjoying  himself and roaming in the dream state and merely witnessing  the results of good and evil, hastens back in the reverse way to  his former condition, the waking state. He remains unaffected  by whatever he sees in that state, for this infinite being is  unattached.”  Janaka said: “Just so, Yajnavalkya. I give you, Sir, a thousand  cows.  Please instruct me further about Liberation itself.”

17.    Yajnavalkya said: “That entity (purusha), after enjoying  himself and roaming in the waking state and merely witnessing  the results of good and evil, hastens back in the reverse way to  its former condition, the dream state or that of dreamless sleep.

18.    “As a large fish swims alternately to both banks of a river�the  east and the west�so does the infinite being move to both  these states: dreaming and waking.

19.    “As a hawk or a falcon roaming in the sky becomes tired, folds  its wings and makes for its nest, so does this infinite entity  (purusha) hasten for this state, where, falling asleep, he  cherishes no more desires and dreams no more dreams.

20.    “There are ni his body nerves (nadis) called hita, which are fine  as a hair divided into a thousand parts and are filled with white,  blue, brown, green and red fluids. Theyt are the seat of the  suble body, which is the storehouse of impressions. Now, when  he feels as if he were being killed or overpowered, or being  chased by an elephant, or falling into a pit, in short, when he  fancies at that time, thorough ignorance, whatever frightful  thing he has expericned in the waking state, that is the dream  state. So also, when he thinks he is a god, as it were, or a king,  as it were, or thinks: “This universe is myself and I am all,: that  is his highest state.

21.    “That indeed is his form�free from desires, free from evils,  free from fear. As a man fully embraced by his beloved wife  knows nothing that is without, nothing that is within, so does  this infinite being (the self), when fully embraced by the  Supreme Self, know nothing that is without, nothing that is  within.  “That indeed is his form, in which all his desires are fulfilled, in  which all desires become the self and which is free from desires  and devoid of grief.

22.    “In this state a father is no more a father, a mother is no more a  mother, the worlds are no more the worlds, the gods are no  more the gods, the Vedas are no more the Vedas. In this state a  thief is no more a thief, the killer of a noble brahmin is no more  a killer, a chandala is no more a chandala, a paulkasa is no  more a paulkasa, a monk is no more a monk, an ascetic is no  more an ascetic.  “This form of his is untouched by good deeds and untouched by  evil deeds, for he is then beyond all the woes of his heart.

23.    “And when it appears that in deep sleep it does not see, yet it is  seeing though it does not see; for there is no cessation of the  vision of the seer, because the seer is imperishable. There is  then, however, no second thing separate from the seer that it  could see.

24.    “And when it appears that in deep sleep it does not smell, yet it  is smelling though it does not smell; for there is no cessation of  the smelling of the smeller, because the smeller is imperishable.  There is then, however, no second thing separate from the  smeller that it could smell.

25.    “And when it appears that in deep sleep it does not taste, yet it  is tasting though it does not taste; for there is no cessation of  the tasting of the taster, because the taster is imperishable.  There is then, however, no second thing separate from the taster  that it could taste.

26.    “And when it appears that in deep sleep it does not speak, yet it  is speaking though it does not speak; for there is no cessation of  the speaking of the speaker, because the speaker is  imperishable. There is then, however, no second thing separate  from the speaker that it could speak about.

27.    “And when it appears that in deep sleep it does not hear, yet it  is hearing though it does not hear; for there is no cessation of  the hearing of the hearer, because the hearer is imperishable.  There is then, however, no second thing separate from the  hearer that it could hear.

28.    “And when it appears that in deep sleep it does not think, yet it  is thinking though it does not think; for there is no cessation of  the thinking of the thinker, because the thinker is imperishable.  There is then, however, no second thing separate from the  thinker that it could think of.

29.    “And when it appears that in deep sleep it does not touch, yet it  is touching though it does not touch; for there is no cessation of  the touching of the toucher, because the toucher is  imperishable. There is then, however, no second thing separate  from the toucher that it could touch.

30.    “And when it appears that in deep sleep it does not know, yet it  is knowing though it does not know; for there is no cessation of  the knowing of the knower, because the knower is  imperishable. There is then, however, no second thing separate  from the knower that it could know.

31.    “When in the waking and dream states there is, as it were,  another, then one can see the other, then one can smell the  other, then one can speak to the other, then one can hear the  other, then one can think of the other, then one can touch the  other, then one can know the other.

32.    “In deep sleep it becomes transparent like water, the witness,  one and without a second. This is the World of Brahman, Your  Majesty. This is its supreme attainment, this is its supreme  glory, this it its highest world, this is its supreme bliss. On a particle of this bliss other creatures live.”  Thus did Yajnavalkya teach Janaka.

33.    “If a person is perfect of body and is prosperous, lord of others  and most lavishly supplied with all human enjoyments, he  represents the highest blessing among men. This human bliss  multiplied a hundred times makes one measure of the bliss of  the Manes who have won their own world. The bliss of these  Manes who have won their world, multiplied a hundred times,  makes one measure of bliss in the world of the gandharvas. The bliss of the gandharvas, multiplied a hundred times, makes one  measure of the bliss of the gods by action (those who attain  godhood through sacrificial rites). The bliss of the gods by  action, multiplied a hundred times, makes one measure of the  bliss of the gods by birth, as also of one who is versed in the  Vedas, sinless and free from desire. The bliss of the gods by  birth, multiplied a hundred times, makes one measure of bliss  in the World of Prajapan (Viraj), as also of one who is versed in  the Vedas, sinless and free from desire. The bliss in the World  of Prajapati, multiplied a hundred times, makes one measure of  bliss in the World of Brahma (Hiranyagarbha), as also O� one  who is versed in the Vedas, sinless and free from desire. This,  indeed, is the supreme bliss. This is the state of Brahman, O  Emperor,” said Yajnavalkya.  Janaka said: I give you a thousand cows, venerable Sir. Please  instruct me further about Liberation itself.”  At this Yajnavalkya was afraid that the intelligent emperor was  driving him to give the solution of all his questions.

34.    “That entity (the self), after enjoying himself and roaming in  the dream state and merely witnessing the results of merits and  demerits, hastens back in the reverse way to its former  condition, the waking state.

35.    “Just as a heavily loaded cart moves along, creaking, even so  the self identified with the body, being presided over by the  Self which is all consciousness (the Supreme Self), moves  along, groaning, when breathing becomes difficult at the  approach of death.

36.    “When this body grows thin�becomes emaciated or disease�  then, as a mango or a fig or a fruit of the peepul tree becomes  detached from its stalk, so does this infinite being completdy  detaching himself from the parts of the body, again move on, in  the same way that he came, to another body for the  remanisfestation of his vital breath (prana).

37.    “Just as, when a king comes, the ugras appointed to deal with  crimes; the sutas and the leaders of the village await him with  food and drink and lodgings ready, saying: �Here he comes,  here he comes,� even so, for the person who knows about the fruits of his own work, there wait all the elements, saying:  �Here comes Brahman, here he comes.�

38    “Just as, when the king wishes to depart, the ugras appointed to  deal with crimes, the sutas and the leaders of the village gather  around him, even so do all the organs gather around the self, at  the time of death, when it struggles for breath.”

Chapter IV�Death and the Hereafter 

1.    Yajnavalkya continued: “Now, when that self becomes weak  and unconscious, as it were, the organs gather around it.  Having wholly seized these particles of light, the self comes to  the heart. When the presiding deity of the eye turns back from  all sides, the dying man fails to notice colour.

2.    “The eye becomes united with the subtle body; then people say:  �He does not see.� The nose becomes united with the subtle  body; then they say: �He does not smell.� The tongue becomes  united with the subtle body; then they say: �He does not taste.�  The vocal organ becomes united with the subtle body; then they  say: �He does not speak.� The ear becomes united with the  subtle body; then they say: �He does not hear.� The mind  becomes united with the subtle body; then they say: �He does  not think.� The skin becomes united with the subtle body; then  they say: �He does not touch.� The intellect becomes united  with the subtle body; then they say: �He does not know.�  “The upper end of the heart lights up and by that light the self  departs, either through the eye or through the head or through  any other part (aperture) of the body.  “And when the self departs, the vital breath follows and when  the vital breath departs, all the organs follow.  “Then the self becomes endowed with a particular  consciousness and passes on to the body to be attained by that  consciousness.  “Knowledge, work and past experience follow the self.

3.    “And just as a leech moving on a blade of grass reaches its end,  takes hold of another and draws itself together towards it, so  does the self, after throwing off this body, that is to say, after  making it unconscious, take hold of another support and draw  itself together towards it.

4.    “And just as a goldsmith takes a small quantity of gold and  fashions out of it another�a newer and better�form, so does  the self, after throwing off this body, that is to say, after making  it unconscious, fashion another�a newer and better�form,  suited to the Manes, or the gandharvas, or the gods, or Viraj, or  Hiranyagarbha, or other beings.

5.    “That self is indeed Brahman; it is also identified with the  intellect, the mind and the vital breath, with the eyes and ears,  with earth, water, air and akasa, with fire and with what is other  than fire, with desire and with absence of desire, with anger and  with absence of anger, with righteousness and unrighteousness,  with all�it is identified, as is well known, with this (i.e. what  is perceived) and with that (i.e. what is inferred). According as  it acts and according as it behaves, so it becomes: by doing  good it becomes good and by doing evil it becomes evil. It  becomes virtuous through virtuous action and evil through evil  action.  “Others, however, say that the self is identified with desire  alone. As is its desire, so is its resolution; and as is its  resolution, so is its deed; and whatever deed it does, that it  reaps.

6.    “Regarding this there is the following verse:  “Because of attachment, the transmigrating self, together with  its work, attains that result to which its subtle body or mind  clings. Having exhausted in the other world the results of  whatever work it did in this life, it returns from that world to  this world for fresh work.�  “Thus does the man who desires transmigrate. But as to the  man who does not desire�who is without desire, who is freed  from desire, whose desire is satisfied, whose only object of  desire is the Self�his organs do not depart. Being Brahman, he  merges in Brahman.

7.    “Regarding this there are the following verses:  “When all the desires that dwell in his heart are got rid of, then  does the mortal man become immortal and attain Brahman in  this very body.�  “Just as the slough of a snake lies, dead and cast away, on an  ant�hill, even so lies this body. Then the self becomes  disembodied and immortal Spirit, the Supreme Self (Prana),  Brahman, the Light.”  Janaka, Emperor of Videha, said: “I give you, venerable Sir, a  thousand cows.”

8.    “Regarding this there are the following verses:  �The subtle, ancient path stretching far away has been touched  (reached) by me; nay, I have realized it myself. By this path the  wise, the knowers of Brahman, move on to the celestial sphere  (Liberation) after the fall of this body, having been freed even  while living.�

9.    �Some speak of it as white, others as blue, grey, green, or red.  This path is realized by a knower of Brahman and is trod by  whoever knows Brahman, has done good deeds and is  identified with the Supreme Light.�

10.    �Into blinding darkness enter those who worship ignorance; into  a greater darkness than that, as it were, enter those who are  devoted to knowledge.�

11.    �Cheerless indeed are those worlds covered with blinding  darkness. To them after death go those people who are ignorant  and unwise.�

12.    �If a man knows the Self as I am this, then desiring what and  for whose sake will he suffer in the wake of the body?�

13.    �Whoever has realized and intimately known the Self, Which  has entered this perilous and perplexing place (the body), is the  maker of the universe; for he is the maker of all. All is his Self  and he, again, is indeed the Self of all.�

14.    �Dwelling in this very body, we have somehow realized  Brahman; otherwise we should have remained ignorant and  great destruction would have overtaken us. Those who know  Brahman become immortal, while others only suffer misery.�

15.    �When a person following the instructions of a teacher directly  beholds the effulgent Self, the Lord of all that has been and will  be, he no longer wishes to hide himself from It.�

16.    �That under which the year with its days rolls on�upon that  immortal Light of l lights the gods meditate as longevity.�

17.    �That in which the five groups of five and the akasa rest, that  very Atman I regard as the Immortal Brahman. Knowing that  Brahman, I am immortal.�

18.    �They who know the Vital Breath (Prana) of the vital breath  (prana), the Eye of the eye, the Ear of the ear, the Mind of the  mind, have realized the ancient, primordial Brahman.�

19.    �Through the mind alone is Brahman to be realized. There is in  It no diversity. He goes from death to death who sees in It, as it  were, diversity.�

20.    �Unknowable and constant, It should be realized in one form  only. The Self is free from taint, beyond the akasa, birthless,  infinite and unchanging.�

21.    �The intelligent seeker of Brahman, learning about the Self  alone, should practise wisdom (prajna). Let him not think of too  many words, for that is exhausting to the organ of speech.�

22.    “That great, unborn Self, which is identified with the intellect  (vijnanamaya) and which dwells in the midst of the organs, lies  in the akasa within the heart. It is the controller of all, the lord  of all, the ruler of all. It does not become greater through good  deeds or smaller through evil deeds. It is the lord of all, the  ruler of all beings, the protector of all beings. It is the dam that  serves as the boundary to keep the different worlds apart. The brahmins seek to realize It through the study of the Vedas,  through sacrifices, through gifts and through austerity which  does not lead to annihilation. Knowing It alone one becomes a  sage (muni). Wishing for this World (i.e. the Self) alone, monks  renounce their homes.  “The knowers of Brahman of olden times, it is said, did not  wish for offspring because they thought: �What shall we do  with offspring�we who have attained this Self, this World?�  They gave up, it is said, their desire for sons, for wealth and for  the worlds and led the life of religious mendicants. That which  is the desire for sons is the desire for wealth and that which is  the desire for wealth is the desire for the worlds; for both these,  indeed, are but desires.  �This Self is That which has been described as Not this, not  this. It is imperceptible, for It is not perceived; undecaying, for  It never decays; unattached, for It is never attached; unfettered,  for It never feels pain and never suffers injury.  �Him who knows this these two thoughts do not overcome: For  this I did an evil deed and For this I did a good deed. He  overcomes both. Things done or not done do not afflict him.�

23.    “This has been expressed by the following Rig verse:  �This is the eternal glory of Brahman: It neither increases nor  decreases through work. Therefore one should know the nature  of That alone. Knowing It one is not touched by evil action.�  “Therefore he who knows It as such becomes self�controlled,  calm, withdrawn into himself, patient and collected; he sees the  Self in his own self (body); he sees all as the Self. Evil does not  overcome him, but he overcomes all evil. Evil does not afflict  him, but he consumes all evil. He becomes sinless, taintless,  free from doubts and a true Brahmana (knower of Brahman).  This is the World of Brahman, O Emperor and you have  attained It.” Thus said Yajnavalkya.  Janaka said: �Venerable Sir, I give you the empire of Videha  and myself, too, with it, to wait upon you.

24.    That great, unborn Self is the eater of food and the giver of  wealth. He who knows this obtains wealth.

25.    That great, unborn Self is undecaying, immortal, undying,  fearless; It is Brahman (infinite). Brahman is indeed fearless.  He who knows It as such becomes the fearless Brahman.

Chapter V�Yajnavalkya and Maitreyi (II) 

1.    Yajnavalkya had two wives: Maitreyi and Katyayani. Of these,  Maitreyi was conversant with the Knowledge of Brahman,  while Katyayani had an essentially feminine outlook. One day  Yajnavalkya, when he wished to embrace another mode of life,

2.    Said: “Maitreyi, my dear, I am going to renounce this life to  become a monk. Let me make a final settlement between you  and Katyayani.”

3.    Maitreyi said: “Venerable Sir, if indeed the whole earth full of  wealth belonged to me, would I be immortal through that or  not?” “No,” replied Yajnavalkya, “your life would be just like  that of people who have plenty. Of Immortality, however, there  is no hope through wealth.”

4.    Then Maitreyi said: “What should I do with that which would  not make me immortal? Tell me, venerable Sir, of that alone  which you know to be the only means of attaining  Immortality.”

5.    Yajnavalkya replied: “My dear, you have been my beloved  even before and now you have resolved to know what is after  my heart. If you wish, my dear, I shall explain it to you. As I  explain it, meditate on what I say.”

6.    And he said: “Verily, not for the sake of the husband, my dear,  is the husband loved, but he is loved for the sake of the self  which, in its true nature, is one with the Supreme Self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the wife, my dear, is the wife loved,  but she is loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the sons, my dear, are the sons  loved, but they are loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of wealth, my dear, is wealth loved,  but it is loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the animals, my dear, are the  animals loved, but they are loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the brahmin, my dear, is the  brahmin loved, but he is loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the kshatriya, my dear, is the  kshatriya loved, but he is loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the worlds, my dear, are the worlds  loved, but they are loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the gods, my dear, are the gods  loved, but they are loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the Vedas, my dear, are the Vedas  loved, but they are loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the beings, my dear, are the beings  loved, but they are loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, not for the sake of the All, my dear, is the All loved,  but it is loved for the sake of the self.  “Verily, my dear Maitreyi, it is the Self that should be  realized�should be heard of, reflected on and meditated upon.  By the realisation of the Self, my dear, through hearing,  reflection and meditation, all this is known.

7.    “The brahmin rejects one who knows him as different from the  Self. The kshatriya rejects one who knows him as different  from the Self. The worlds reject one who knows them as  different from the Self. The gods reject one who knows them as  different from the Self. The Vedas reject one who knows them  as different from the Self. The beings reject one who knows  them as different from the Self. The All rejects one who knows  it as different from the Self. This brahmin, this kshatriya, these  worlds, these gods, these Vedas, these beings and this All�are  that Self.

8�10.    “As the various particular kinds of notes of a drum, when it is  beaten, cannot be grasped by themselves, but are grasped only  when the general note of the drum or the general sound  produced by different kinds of strokes is grasped;  “And as the various particular notes of a conch, when it is  blown, cannot be grasped by themselves, but are grasped only  when the general note of the conch or the general sound  produced by different kinds of blowing is grasped;  “And as the various particular notes of a vina, when it is  played, cannot be grasped by themselves, but are grasped only  when the general note of the vina or the general sound  produced by the different kinds of playing is grasped;

11.    “As from a fire kindled with wet fuel various kinds of smoke  issue forth, even so, my dear, the Rig�Veda, the Yajur�Veda,  the Sama�Veda, the Atharvangirasa, history (itihasa),  mythology (purana), the arts (vidya), Upanishads, verses  (slokas), aphorisms (sutras), elucidations (anuvyakhyanas),  explanations (vyakhyanas), sacrifices, oblations in the fire,  food, drink, this world, the next world and all beings are all like  the breath of this infinite Reality. From this Supreme Self are  all these, indeed, breathed forth.

12.    “As the ocean is the one goal of all waters (the place where  they merge), so the skin is the one goal of all kinds of touch,  the nostrils are the one goal of all smells, the tongue is the one  goal of all savours, the ear is the one goal of all sounds, the  mind is the one goal of all deliberations, the intellect is the one  goal of all forms of knowledge, the hands are the one goal of all  actions, the organ of generation is the one goal of all kinds of  enjoyment, the excretory organ is the one goal of all excretions,  the feet are the one goal of all kinds of walking, the organ of  speech is the one goal of all the Vedas.

13.    “As a lump of salt has neither inside nor outside and is  altogether a homogeneous mass of taste, even so this Self, my  dear, has neither inside nor outside and is altogether a  homogeneous mass of Intelligence. This Self comes out as a  separate entity from the elements and with their destruction this  separate existence is also destroyed. After attaining this  oneness it has no more consciousness. This is what I say, my  dear.”  So said Yajnavalkya.

14.    Then Maitreyi said: “Just here you have completely bewildered  me, venerable Sir. Indeed, I do not at all understand this.”  He replied: “Certainly I am not saying anything bewildering,  my dear. Verily, this Self is immutable and indestructible.

15.    “For when there is duality, as it were, then one sees another,  one smells another, one tastes another, one speaks to another,  one hears another, one thinks of another, one touches another,  one knows another. But when to the knower of Brahman everything has become the Self, then what should he see and  through what, what should he smell and through what, what  should he taste and through what, what should he speak and  through what, what should he hear and through what, what  should he think and through what, what should he touch and  through what, what should he know and through what?  Through what should one know That Owing to which all this is  known?  “This Self is That which has been described as �Not this, not  this.� It is imperceptible, for It is never perceived; undecaying,  for It never decays; unattached, for It never attaches Itself;  unfettered, for It never feels pain and never suffers injury.  Through what, O Maitreyi, should one know the Knower?  “Thus you have the instruction given to you. This much,  indeed, is the means to Immortality.”  Having said this, Yajnavalkya renounced home.

Chapter VI�The Line of Teachers

1.    Now the line of teachers:  We received the knowledge from Pautimashya. Pautimashya  received it from Gaupavana. Gaupavana from another  Pautimashya. This Pautimashya from another Gaupavana. This  Gaupavana from Kausika. Kausika from Kaundinya.  Kaundinya from Sandilya. Sandilya from Kausika and  Gautama. Gautama

2.    From Agnivesya. Agnivesya from Gargya. Gargya from  another Gargya. This Gargya from Gautama. Gautama from  Saitava. Saitava from Pirasaryayana. Parasarayayana from  Gargyayana. Gargyayana from Uddalakayana. Uddalakayana  from Jabalayana. Jabalayana from Madhyandinayana.  Madhyandinayana from Saukarayana. Saukarayana from  Kashayana. Kashayana from Sayakayana. Sayakayana from  Kausikayani. Kausikayani

3.    From Ghritakausika. Ghritakausika from Parasaryayana.  Parasaryayana from Parasarya. Parasarya from Jatukarnya.  Jatukarnya from Asurayana and Yiska. Asurayana from  Traivani. Traivani from Aupajandhani. Aupajandhani from  Asuri. Asuri from Bharadvaja. Bharadvaja from Atreya. Atreya  from Manti. Manti from Gautama. Gautama from another  Gautama. This Gautama from Vatsya. Vatsya from SandiIya.  Sandilya from Kaisorya Kapya. Kaisorya Kapya from  Kumaraharita. Kumaraharita from Galava. Galava from  Vidarbhikaundinya. Vidarbhikaundinya from Vatsanapat  Babhrava. Vatsanapat Babhrava from Pathin Saubhara. Pathin  Saubhara from Ayasya Angirasa. Ayasya Angirasa from Abhuti  Tvashtra. Abhuti Tvashtra from Visvarupa Tvashtra. Visvarupa  Tvashtra from the two Asvins. The two Asvins from Dadhyach  Atharvana. Dadhyach Atharvana from Atharvana Daiva.  Atharvana Daiva from Mrityu Pradhvamsana. Mrityu  Pradhvamsana from Pradhvamsana. Pradhvamsana from  Ekarshi. Ekarshi from Viprachitti. Viprachitti from Vyashti.  Vyashti from Sanaru. Sanaru from Sanitana. Sanitana from  Sanaga. Sanaga from Parameshthin (Viraj). Parameshthin from  Brahman (Hiranyagarbha). Brahman is self�born (eternal).  Salutation to Brahman.

Part Five

Chapter I�The Infinity of Brahman 

1.    Om. Infinite is That Brahman, infinite in this manifested  universe. From the Infinite Brahman proceeds the infinite.  After the realization of the Great Identity or after the cosmic  dissolution, when the infinity of the infinite universe merges in  the Infinite Brahman, there remains the Infinite Brahman alone.  Om is the Akasa Brahman�the primeval akasa. It is the akasa  containing air, says the son of Kauravayarn. It (Om) is the  Veda�thus the knowers of Brahman know; for through it one  knows what is to he known.

Chapter II�The Three Great Disciplines 

1.    Prajapati had three kinds of offspring: gods, men and demons  (asuras). They lived with Prajapati, practising the vows of  brahmacharins. After finishing their term, the gods said to him:  “Please instruct us, Sir.” To them he uttered the syllable da and  asked:  “Have you understood?” They replied: “We have. You said to  us, �Control yourselves (damyata).� He said: “Yes, you have  understood.”

2.    Then the men said to him: “Please instruct us, Sir” To them he  uttered the same syllable da and asked: “Have you understood?” They replied: “We have. You said to  us, �Give (datta).� He said: �Yes, you have understood.

3.    Then the demons said to him: “Please instruct us, Sir.” To them  he uttered the same syllable da and asked:  “Have you understood?” They replied: “We have. You said to  us: �Be compassionate (dayadhvam).� He said: “Yes, you have  understood.”  That very thing is repeated even today by the heavenly voice, in  the form of thunder, as “Da,” “Da,” “Da,” which means:  “Control yourselves,” “Give,” and “Have compassion.”  Therefore one should learn these three: self�control, giving  and mercy.

Chapter III�Brahman as the Heart 

1.    Prajapati is this�the heart (intellect). It (the heart) is Brahman.  It is all. Hridayam (the heart) consists of three syllables. One  syllable is hri; and to him who knows this, his own people and  others bring presents. One syllable is da; and to him who knows  this, his own people and others give their powers. One syllable  is yam; and he who knows this goes to heaven.

Chapter IV�Meditation on Satya Brahman 

1.    That intellect Brahman was verily this�satya alone. And  whosoever knows this great, glorious first�born one as the  Satya Brahman conquers these worlds. And his enemy is thus  conquered and becomes non�existent�yes, whosoever knows  this great, glorious first�born one as the Satya Brahman; for  Satya indeed is that Brahman.

Chapter V�In Praise of Satya Brahman 

1.    In the beginning this universe was water alone. That water  produced Satya. Satya is Brahman. Brahman produced  Prajapati and Prajapati the gods. Those gods meditate on Satya.  This name Satya consists of three syllables. Sa is one syllable,  ti is one syllable and ya is one syllable. The first and last  syllables are the truth. In the middle is untruth. This untruth is  enclosed on both sides by truth; thus truth preponderates.  Untruth does not hurt him who knows this.  180

2.    Now, that which is Satya is the sun�the being who dwells in  yonder orb and the being who is in the right eye. These two rest  on each other. The former (the being in the sun) rests on the  latter (the being in the right eye) through his rays and the latter  rests on the former through his organs. When the individual self  is about to leave the body, he sees the solar orb clearly (i.e.  without rays). Those rays no longer come to him.

3.    Of this being who is in the solar orb, the syllable Bhuh is the  head, for there is one head and there is this one syllable; the  word Bhuvah is the arms, for there are two arms and there are  these two syllables; the word Svah is the legs, for there are two  legs and there are these two syllables. His secret name is Ahar.  He who knows this destroys evil and leaves it behind.

4.    Of this being who is in the right eye, the syllable Bhur is the  head, for there is one head and there is this one syllable; the  word Bhuvar is the arms, for there are two arms and there are  these two syllables; the word Svar is the legs, for there are two  legs and there are these two syllables. His secret name is Aham.  He who knows this destroys evil and leaves it behind.

Chapter VI�Meditation on Brahman as the Mind 

1.    This being identified with the mind and resplendent by nature is  realized by yogis within the heart as of the size of a grain of  rice or barley. He is the lord of all, the ruler of all and governs  all this  �whatever there is.

Chapter VII�Meditation on Brahman as Lightning 

1.    They say that lightning is Brahman. It is called lightning  (vidyut) because it scatters (vidanat) darkness. Whosoever  knows this�that lightning is Brahman�scatters the evils that  are ranged against him; for lightning is indeed Brahman.

Chapter VIII�Meditation on the Vedas as a Cow 

1.    One should meditate upon speech (the Vedas) as a cow. She  (speech) has four teats: the sounds Svaha; Vashat, Hanta and  Svadha. The gods live on two of her teats, Svaha and Vashat;  men, on Hanta; and the Manes on Svadha. Her bull is the vital  breath (prana) and her calf, the mind.

Chapter IX��Meditation on the Vaisvanara Fire 

1.    This fire which is within a man and digests food that is eaten is  Vaisvanara. Its sound is that which one hears by stopping the  ears. When a man is about to leave the body, he hears this  sound no more.

Chapter X��The Path of the Departing Soul 

1.    When a man departs from this world, he reaches the air. The air  opens there for him as wide as the hole of a chariot wheel.  Through this opening he ascends and reaches the sun. The sun  opens there for him as wide as the hole of a lambara. By this  opening he ascends and reaches the moon. The moon opens  there for him as wide as the hole of a drum. By this opening he  ascends and reaches a World free from grief and cold. There he  dwells for endless years.

Chapter XI�The Supreme Austerities 

1.    The supreme austerity is indeed that a man suffers when he is  ill. He who knows this wins the highest world.  The supreme austerity is indeed that a man, after death, is  carried to the forest. He who knows this wins the highest world.  The supreme austerity is indeed that a man, after death, is laid  on the fire. He who knows this wins the highest world.

Chapter XII�Meditation on Food and the Vital Breath as  Brahman 

1.    Some say that food is Brahman; but this is not so, for food  decays without the vital breath (prana). Others say that the vital breath is Brahman; but this is not so, for the vital breath dries  up without food. These two deities (food and the vital breath),  when they become united, attain the highest state  (Brahmanhood). Thus reflecting, Pratrida said to his father:  “What good, indeed, can I do him who knows this and what  evil can I do him either?”  His father answered, stopping him with a gesture of his hand:  “Oh, no, Pratrida; for who would attain the highest merely by  being identified with these two?”  Further, he (the father) said to him this: “It is vi; food is verily  vi, for all these creatures rest (visanti) on food. It is ram; the  vital breath is ram, for all these creatures delight (ramante) in  the vital breath.” All creatures rest on him, all creatures delight  in him, who knows this.

Chapter XIII�Meditation on the Vital Breath 

1.    One should meditate on the vital breath as the Uktha. The vital  breath is the Uktha, for it raises up (utthapayati) all this  universe. From him who knows this there is raised a son who is  a knower of the vital breath and he wins union with and abode  in the same world as the Uktha.

2.    One should meditate upon the vital breath as the Yajus. The  vital breath is the Yajus, for all these beings are united  (yujyante) with one another if the vital breath is present. All  beings are united to give eminence to him who knows this and  he wins union with and abode in the same world as the Yajus  (vital breath).

3.    One should meditate upon the vital breath as the Saman. The  vital breath is the Saman, for all these beings meet (samyanchi)  if the Saman (vital breath) is present. For the sake of him who  knows this all beings are united and they succeed in giving him  eminence; and he wins union with and abode in the same world  as the Saman.

4.    One should meditate upon the vital breath as the Kshatra. The  vital breath is the Kshatra, for the vital breath protects (trayate)  the body from wounds (khanitoh). He who knows this attains  the Kshatra (vital breath) which needs no other protector and he  wins union with and abode in the same world as the Kshatra.

Chapter XIV�The Sacred Gayatri 

1.    The words Bhumi (earth), Antariksha (sky) and Dyaus (heaven)  form eight syllables and the first foot of the Gayatri consists of  eight syllables. So the three worlds constitute the first foot of  the Gayatri. Whosoever knows this about the first foot of the  Gayatri wins all that is in the three worlds.

2.    Richah, Yajumshi and Samani form eight syllables and the  second foot of the Gayatri consists of eight syllables. So these  three Vedas constitute the second foot of the Gayatri.  Whosoever thus knows the second foot of the Gayatri wins as  much as that treasury of knowledge, the three Vedas, has to  confer.

3.    Prana, apana and vyana form eight syllables and the third foot  of the Gayatri. consists of eight syllables. So these three forms  of the vital breath constitute the third foot of the Gayatri.  Whosoever knows this about the third foot of the Gayatri wins  all the living beings that are in the universe.  Now, its turiya, apparently visible (darsata) and supramundane  (paroraja) foot is this�sun that glows yonder. That which is  fourth is called turiya. He (the being in the solar orb) is  apparently visible (darsata), because he is seen, as it were, by  the yogis. He is supramundane (paroraja), because he shines  alone on the whole universe as its overlord. He who thus knows  the fourth foot of the Gayatri shines with splendour and glory.

4.    That Gayatri rests on that fourth, apparently visible,  supramundane foot. And that, again, rests on truth. The eye is  truth, for the eye is indeed truth. Therefore, even today, if two  persons come disputing, one saying: “I saw it,” and another: “I  heard of it,” we should trust the one who says: “I saw it.  That truth rests on strength. The vital breath (prana) is strength.  Hence truth rests on the vital breath. Therefore they say that  strength is more powerful than truth.  Thus the Gayatri is based on the vital breath within the body.  That Gayatri protected the gayas. The organs are the gayas;  therefore the Gayatri protected (tatre) the organs. Because it  protected the organs, it is called the Gayatri. The Savitri verse,  which the teacher communicates to the pupil, is no other than this. It saves the organs of the pupil to whom it is imparted by  the teacher.

5.    Some impart to the pupil the Savitri which is in the Anushtubh  metre, saying: “The goddess of speech is Anushtubh; so we  shall impart it to him.”  But one should not do that. One should impart only that Savitri  which is Gayatri. Verily, if one who knows this accepts too  much as a gift, as it were, it is not enough for even one foot of  the Gayatri.

6.    If he (the knower of the Gayatri) accepts as a gift the three  worlds full of wealth, he will be receiving the fruit of knowing  only the first foot of the Gayatri. If he accepts as a gift as much  as this treasury of knowledge, the Vedas, has to confer, he will  be receiving the fruit of knowing only the second foot of the  Gayatri. And if he accepts as a gift as much as is covered by all  living creatures in the world, he will be receiving the fruit of  knowing only the third foot of the Gayatri. While the fruit of  knowing its fourth, apparently visible, supramundane foot�  yonder sun that glows�is not to be counterbalanced by any gift  received.  Indeed, how could anyone receive so much as a gift?

7.    The salutation to the Gayatri:  “O Gayatri, thou art one�footed, two�footed, three�footed  and four�footed. And thou art without any feet, for thou art  unattainable. Salutation to thee, fourth foot, apparently visible  and supramundane! May the enemy never attain his object!”  Should the knower of the Gayatri bear hatred towards anyone,  he should either use this mantra: “May his desired object never  flourish!”�in which case that object of the person against  whom he thus salutes the Gayatri never flourishes�or he may  say: “May I attain that cherished object of his!”

8.    On this subject Janaka, Emperor of Videha, said to Budila, the  son of Asvatarasva: “Well, how is it that you, who called  yourself a knower of the Gayatri, have come to he an elephant  and are carrying me?”  He replied: “Because, Your Majesty, I did not know its mouth.”  Janaka said: “Fire is its mouth. If people put a large quantity of  fuel into the fire, it is all burnt up. Similarly, a man who knows  this, even if he commits a great many sins, consumes them all  and becomes pure, clean and free from decay and death.”

Chapter XV�The Prayer of a Dying Person 

1.    The door (real nature) of the truth (Satya Brahman) is covered  by a golden disc. Open it, O Nourisher! Remove it so that I  who have been worshipping the truth may behold it.  O Nourisher! O lone Traveller of the sky! O Controller! O Sun!  O Offspring of Prajapati! Gather your rays. Withdraw your  light. I would see through your grace that form of yours which  is the most benign. I am indeed He, that purusha who dwells in  the sun. I am immortal.  Now when my body falls may my breath return to the all�  pervading Prana! May this body, reduced to ashes, return to the  earth!  Om. O Fire, who art the symbol Om, O god of deliberations,  remember, remember all that I have done.  O Fire, lead us by the good path towards the enjoyment of the  fruit of our action. You know, O god, all our deeds. Destroy our  sin of deceit. We offer by words repeated salutations to you.

Part Six

Chapter I�The Supremacy of the Prana 

1.    Om. He who knows what is the oldest and greatest becomes the  oldest and greatest among his kinsmen. The vital breath (prana)  is indeed the oldest and greatest. He who knows this becomes  the oldest and greatest among his kinsmen and also among  those of whom he wishes to be so.

2.    He who knows what is the most excellent (vasishtha) becomes  the most excellent among his kinsmen. The organ of speech is  indeed the vasishtha. He who knows this becomes the most  excellent among his kinsmen and also among those of whom he  wishes to be so.

3.    He who knows what has the attribute of steadiness (pratishtha)  lives steadily in rough as well as smooth places and times. The  eye indeed is endowed with steadiness, for with the help of the  eye one remains steady in rough as well as smooth places and  times. He who knows this lives steadily in rough as well as  smooth places and times.

4.    He who knows prosperity (sampad) attains whatever object he  desires. The ear indeed is prosperity, for when the ear is intact  all the Vedas are acquired. He who knows this attains whatever  object he desires.

5.    He who knows the abode (ayatana) becomes the abode of his  kinsmen and also of other people. The mind indeed is the  abode. He who knows this becomes the abode of his kinsmen  as well as of other people.

6.    He who knows what has the attribute of procreation (prajati) is  enriched with children and animals. Semen verily has this  attribute. He who knows this is enriched with children and  animals.

7.    These organs, disputing about who was superior among them,  went to Prajapati and asked: “Which one among us is the most  excellent (vasishtha)?” He said: “That one among you is the  most excellent by whose departure this body is considered to  suffer most.”

8.    The organ of speech departed. After being absent for a whole  year it came back and said: “How have you been able to live  without me?” The other organs said: “We lived just as dumb  people live, without speaking through the tongue, but living  through the vital breath, seeing through the eye, hearing  through the ear, knowing through the mind and procreating  through the organ of generation.” Then the organ of speech  entered the body.

9.    The eye departed. After being absent for a whole year it came  back and said: “How have you been able to live without me?”  The other organs said: “We lived just as blind people live,  without seeing through the eye, but living through the vital breath, speaking through the organ of speech, hearing through  the ear, knowing through the mind and procreating through the  organ of generation.” Then the eye entered the body.

10.    The ear went out. After being absent for a whole year it came  back and said: “How have you been able to live without me?”  The other organs said: “We lived just as deaf people live,  without hearing through the ear, but living through the vital  breath, speaking through the organ of speech, seeing through  the eye, knowing through the mind and procreating through the  organ of generation.” Then the ear entered the body.

11.    The mind went out. After being absent for a whole year it came  back and said: “How have you been able to live without me?”  The other organs said: “We lived just as idiots live, without  knowing through the mind, but living through the vital breath,  speaking through the organ of speech, seeing through the eye,  hearing through the ear and procreating through the organ of  generation.” Then the mind entered the body.

12.    Then the organ of generation went out. After being absent for a  whole year it came back and said: “How have you been able to  live without me?” The other organs said: “We lived just as  impotent people live, without procreating children through the  organ of generation, but living through the vital breath,  speaking through the organ of speech, seeing through the eye,  hearing through the ear and knowing through the mind.” Then  the organ of generation entered the body.

13.    Then as the vital breath was about to depart, it uprooted the  organs from their places just as a great, noble horse of the  Sindhu country tears up the pegs to which his feet are tied.  They said: “Venerable Sir, please do not go out. We shall not  be able to live without you.”  “If I am such, then give me an offering.”  “So be it.”

14.    The organ of speech said: “That attribute of being most  excellent which I possess is yours.”  The eye said: “That attribute of steadiness which I possess is yours.”  The ear said: “That attribute of prosperity which I possess is  yours.”  The mind said: “That attribute of being an abode which I  possess is yours.  The organ of generation said: “That attribute of procreation  which I possess is yours.”  Then the vital breath said: “If I am such, then what will be my  food and what will be my dress?”  They replied: “Whatever food there is�including that of dogs,  worms, insects and moths�will be your food and water will be  your dress.”  He who knows the food of the vital breath to be such never  happens to eat anything or accept anything that is not food.  Wise men who are versed in the Vedas therefore take a sip of  water Just before and after eating; they think that thereby they  remove the nakedness of the vital breath.

Chapter II�The Process of Rebirth 

1.    Svetaketu, the grandson of Aruna, came to the assembly of the  Panchalas. He approached Pravahana, the son of Jivala, who  was being waited upon by his courtiers. As soon as the king  saw him, he said:  “Is it you, boy?” He replied: “Yes, Sir.”  Then the king asked: “Have you been taught by your father?”  “Yes,” he replied.

2.    The king said: “Do you know how people, after departing from  this life, proceed on different paths?” “No,” he replied.  “Do you know how they return to this world?” “No,” he replied.  “Do you know why the other world is never filled up even  though so many people go there again and again?” “No,” he  replied.  “Do you know after how many offerings of oblations the water  (the liquid oblation) becomes endowed with a human voice,  rises up and speaks?” “No,” he replied.  “Do you know the means of access to the path leading to the  gods or to that leading to the Manes, that is to say, through  what deeds men attain the path leading to the gods or that  leading to the Manes? We have heard the following words of  the Mantra: �I have heard of the two paths for men, one leading  to the Manes and the other to the gods. Going along them they  (departed souls) are united with their destination. They (the  paths) lie between the father (heaven) and the mother (earth).�  Svetaketu said: “I do not know even one of these.”

3.    Then the king invited him to stay. But the boy, disregarding the  invitation, hurried away. He went to his father and said: “Did  you not tell me before that you had fully instructed me?”  “What then, my intelligent child?”  “That fellow of a kshatriya asked me five questions and I did  not know one of them.”  “What were they?”  “These,” said Svetaketu and he recited them.

4.    The father said: “My child, believe me, whatever I myself  knew, I told you. But come, let us go there and live as religious  students (brahmachirins).” “You may go, Sir,” the son replied.  Then Gautama went to where King Pravahana, the son of  Jivala, was giving audience. The king offered him a seat,  ordered water for him and made him the reverential offering.  Then he said: “Revered Gautama, we will give you a boon.”

5.    Gautama said: “You have promised me this boon. Now please  tell me what you spoke about to my boy.”

6.    The king said: “Ah, those are divine boons, Gautama. Please  ask a human boon.”

7.    Gautama said: “You know well that I have gold, cows, horses,  maidservants, retinue and apparel. Please do not be ungenerous  towards me in regard to that gift which is plentiful, infinite and  in�exhaustible.”  The king said: “Then, verily, O Gautama, you should ask it in  the prescribed way.”  Gautama replied: “I approach you as a disciple.”  The ancients used to approach a teacher through mere  declaration. So Gautama lived with the king by merely  announcing that he was a student.

8.    The king said: “Please do not be offended with us even as your  paternal grandfather was not offended with ours. Before now  this knowledge never rested with a brahmin. But I shall teach it  to you, for who can refuse you when you speak like this?  190

9.    “Yonder world is the sacrificial fire, the sun is its fuel, the rays  its smoke, the day its flame, the four quarters its cinders and the  intermediate quarters its sparks. In this fire the gods offer faith  as libation. Out of that offering King Moon is born.

10.    “Parjanya (the god of rain), O Gautama, is the fire, the year is  its fuel, the clouds its smoke, lightning its flame, the  thunderbolt its cinders, the rumbling its sparks. In this fire the  gods offer King Moon as libation. Out of that offering rain is  produced.

11.    “This world, O Gautama, is the fire, the earth is its fuel, fire its  smoke, the night its flame, the moon its cinders, the stars its  sparks. In this fire the gods offer rain as libation. Out of that  offering food is produced.

12.    “Man, O Gautama, is the fire, the open mouth is its fuel, the  vital breath its smoke, speech its flame, the eye its cinders and  the ear its sparks. In this fire the gods offer food as libation.  Out of that offering semen is produced.

13.    “Woman, O Gautama, is the fire, her sexual organ is the fuel,  the hairs the smoke, the vulva the flame, sexual intercourse the  cinders, enjoyment the sparks. In this fire the gods offer semen  as libation. Out of this offering a man is born. He lives as long  as he is to live. Then, when he dies,

14.    “They carry him to be offered in the fire. The fire becomes his  fire, the fuel his fuel, the smoke his smoke, the flame his flame,  the cinders his cinders and the sparks his sparks. In this fire the  gods offer the man as libation. Out of this offering the man  emerges in radiant splendour.

15.    “Those even among householders who know this, as described  and those too who, living in the forest, meditate with faith upon  the Satya Brahman (Hiranyagarbha), reach the deity identified with flame, from him the deity of the day, from him the deity  of) the fortnight in which the moon waxes, from him the deities  of the six months during which the sun travels northward, from  them the deity identified with the world of the gods (devaloka),  from him the sun, from the sun the deity of lightning. Then a  being created from the mind of Hiranyagarbha comes and leads  them to the worlds of Brahmin. In those worlds of Brahma they  become exalted and live for many years. They no more return  to this world.

16.    “But those who conquer the worlds through sacrifices, charity  and austerity reach the deity of smoke, from smoke, the deity of  the night, from night the deity of the fortnight in which the  moon wanes, from the decreasing half of the moon the deities  of the six months during which the sun travels southward, from  these months the deity of the world of the Manes and from the  world of the Manes, the moon. Reaching the moon they  become food. There the gods enjoy them, just as here the  priests drink the shining soma juice�saying as it were:  “Flourish, dwindle.” And when their past work is exhausted  they reach this very akasa, from the akasa they reach the air,  from the air rain, from rain the earth. Reaching the earth they  become food. Then they are again offered in the fire of man  and thence in the fire of woman. Out of the fire of woman they  are born and perform rites with a view to going to other worlds.  Thus do they rotate.  “Those, however, who do not know these two ways become  insects and moths and those creatures which often bite (i.e.  mosquitoes and gnats).”

Chapter III�Rites for the Attainment of Wealth 

1.    Whoever wishes to attain greatness (i.e. wealth for performing  sacrificial rites) should act as follows: On an auspicious day of  the fortnight in which the moon waxes, under a constellation  bearing a masculine name, during the northward journey of the  sun, he should undertake for twelve days a vow connected with  the Upasads, gather in a cup or a bowl made of fig wood all the  herbs and their grains, sweep and plaster the ground, lay the  fire, spread the kusa grass, purify the offering (clarified butter)  according to the rules, place between himself and the fire the  mantha (the paste made of those herbs etc.) and offer oblations  with the following mantras:  “O Fire, to all those gods under you who spitefully slay men�s  desires, I offer their share. May they be satisfied and satisfy me  with all the objects of my desire! Svaha!  “To that deity who turns out to be spiteful under your  protection, thinking that she is the support of all, I offer this  stream of clarified butter. Svaha!”

2.    “Svaha to the oldest, svaha to the greatest!”�uttering these  words, he offers an oblation in the fire and lets the remainder  adhering to the ladle drip into the paste (mantha).  “Svaha to the vital breath (prana), svaha to the vasishtha (the  most excellent)!”�uttering these words, he offers an oblation  in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle drip into  the paste (mantha).  “Svaha to the organ of speech, svaha to that which has  steadiness!”  �uttering these words, he offers an oblation in the fire and lets  the remainder adhering to the ladle drip into the paste (mantha).  “Svaha to the eye, svaha to prosperity!”�uttering these words,  he offers an oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering  to the ladle drip into the paste (mantha).  “Svaha to the ear, svaha to the abode!”�uttering these words,  he offers an oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering  to the ladle drip into the paste (mantha).  “Svaha to the mind, svaha to procreation (prajati)!”�uttering  these words, he offers an oblation in the fire and lets the  remainder adhering to the ladle drip into the paste (mantha).  “Svaha to the organ of generation!”�uttering these words, he  offers an oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to  the ladle drip into the paste (mantha).

3.    “Svaha to fire”�uttering these words, he offers an oblation in  the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle drip into the  paste.  “Svaha to the moon”�uttering these words, he offers an  oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle  drip into the paste.  “Svaha to the earth”�uttering these words, he offers an  oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle  drip into the paste.  “Svaha to the sky”�uttering these words, he offers an oblation  in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle drip into  the paste.  “Svaha to heaven”�uttering these words, he offers an oblation  in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle drip into  the paste.  “Svaha to earth, sky and heaven”�uttering these words, he  offers an oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to  the ladle drip into the paste.  “Svaha to the brahmin”�uttering these words, he offers an  oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle  drip into the paste.  “Svaha to the kshatriya”�uttering these words, he offers an  oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle drip into the paste.  “Svaha to the past”�uttering these words, he offers an oblation  in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle drip into  the paste.  “Svaha to the future”�uttering these words, he offers an  oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle  drip into the paste.  “Svaha to the universe”�uttering these words, he offers an  oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle  drip into the paste.  “Svaha to all”�uttering these words, he offers an oblation in  the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle drip into the  paste.  “Svaha to Prajapati”�uttering these words, he offers an  oblation in the fire and lets the remainder adhering to the ladle  drip into the paste.

4.    Then he touches the paste, uttering the mantra: “You move as  the vital breath; you bum as fire; you are infinite as Brahman;  you are unshaken as the sky. You are the meeting�place of all.  You are the sound hing and are uttered as hing in the sacrifice  by the prastotri. You are the Udgitha and are chanted by the  udgatri. You are recited by the adhvaryu and recited back by  the agnidhra. You are fully ablaze in the moist cloud. You are  omnipresent and the ruler. You are food as the moon and light  as fire. You are death and you are that in which all things  merge.”

5.    Then he raises the paste, saying: “As the vital breath you know  all; we too are aware of your greatness as the vital breath. The  vital breath is the king, the ruler, the sovereign. May it make  me king, ruler and sovereign.”

6.    Then he eats the paste, saying: �Tat saviturvarenyam� (�That  adorable light�)��The winds blow sweetly (madhu), the rivers  pour forth sweetness (madhu); may the herbs be sweet (madhu)  unto us!� �Svaha to the earth (Bhuh).  �Bhargo devasya dhimahi��(�Of the radiant sun, We meditate  upon� )��May the nights and days be sweet (madhu), may the dust of the earth be sweet (madhu), may heaven, our father, be  sweet (madhu)!� �Svaha to the sky (Bhuvah).�  �Dhiyo yo nah prachodayit� (�May He stimulate our  intellect�)�  �May the soma creeper be sweet (madhu) unto us, may the sun  be sweet (madhu), may the quarters be filled with sweetness  (madhu) for us!� �Svaha to heaven (Svah).�  Then he repeats the whole Gayatri and all the verses about  sweetness (madhumati) and says at the end: “May I be all this!  Svaha to earth, sky and heaven.  Then he eats all that is left of the paste, washes his hands and  lies down behind the fire with his head to the east.  In the morning he salutes the sun saying: “You are the one  non�dual and best lotus of the quarters; may I be the one lotus  among men.  Then he returns the way he went, sits behind the fire and  repeats the line of teachers.

7.    Uddalaka, the son of Aruna, taught this to his pupil Vijasaneya  Yajnavalkya and said: “Should One pour it (the paste) even On  a dry stump, branches would grow and leaves spring forth.”

8.    Then Vajasaneya Yajnavalkya taught this to his pupil  Madhuka, the son of Paingi and said: “Should one pour it even  on a dry stump, branches would grow and leaves spring forth.”

9.    Then Madhuka, the son of Paingi, taught this to his pupil  Chula, the son of Bhagavitta and said: “Should one pour it even  on a dry stump, branches would grow and leaves spring forth.”

10.    Then Chula, the son of Bhagavitta, taught this to his disciple  Janaki, the son of Ayasthuna and said: “Should One pour it  even on a dry stump, branches would grow and leaves spring  forth.”

11.    Then Janaki, the son of Ayasthuna, taught this to his pupil  Satyakama, the son of Jabala and said: “Should one pour it  even on a dry stump, branches would grow and leaves spring  forth.”

12.    And Satyakama, the son of Jabala, taught this to his pupils and  said:  “Should one pour it even on a dry stump, branches would grow  and leaves spring forth.”  One must not teach this to anyone but a son or a pupil.

13.    Four articles are made of fig wood: the sacrificial ladle, the  bowl, the fuel and the two mixing�rods.  The cultivated grains are ten in number: Rice, barley, sesamum,  beans, millet (anu), panic seeds (priyangu), wheat, lentils, pulse  and vetch.  They should be crushed and soaked in curds, honey and  clarified butter and offered as an oblation.

Chapter IV�Conception and Birth as Religious Rites 

1.    The earth is verily the essence of all these beings, water is the  essence of the earth, herbs of water, flowers of herbs, fruits of  flowers, man of fruits and semen is the essence of man.

2.    Prajapati said to Himself: “Well, let Me make a firm basis for it  (semen).” So He created woman. Having created her, He placed  her below and worshipped her. Therefore one should worship a  woman, placing her below. He (Prajapati) extended His organ that projects and with it impregnated her.

3.    Her lap is the sacrificial altar, her hair the sacrificial grass, her  skin within the organ the lighted fire; the two labia of the vulva  are the two stones of the soma�press.  He who, knowing this, practises sexual intercourse wins as  great a world as is won through the Vijapeya sacrifice; he  acquires for himself the fruit of the good deeds of the woman.  But he who, without knowing this, practises sexual intercourse  turns over to the woman his own good deeds.

4.    Having known this, Uddalaka the son of Aruna, Naka the son  of Mudgala and Kumara�harita said: “Many mortals,  brahmins only in name, perform the sexual act without knowledge of what has been said and depart from this world  impotent and without merit.”  Even if this much semen�of one asleep or of one awake�is  spilled,

5.    He should touch it and repeat the following mantra:  “Whatever semen of mine has spilt on earth, whatever has  flowed to plants, whatever to water, I reclaim it.”  With these words he should take the semen with his ring finger  and thumb and rub it between his breasts or eyebrows,  repeating the following mantra:  “Let the semen return to me, let Vigour come to me again, let  glow and good fortune come to me again. May the deities who  dwell in the sacrificial fire put the semen back in its proper  place.”

6.    Now, if a man sees himself (his reflection) in water, he should  recite the following mantra:  “May the gods bestow on me vigour, manhood, fame, wealth  and merit.”  In praise of the wife who will bear him a son:  She (his wife) has put on the soiled clothes of impurity; she is,  verily, loveliness among women. Therefore when she has  removed the clothes of impurity and appears beautiful, he  should approach her and speak to her.

7.    If she does not willingly yield her body to him, he should buy  her with presents. If she is still unyielding, he should strike her  with a stick or with his hand and overcome her, repeating the  following mantra:  “With power and glory I take away your glory.”  Thus she becomes discredited.

8.    If she grants his desire, he should repeat the following mantra:  “With power and glory I give you glory.”  Thus they both become glorious.

9.    If a man desires his wife with the thought: “May she enjoy love  with me,” then, after inserting the member in her, joining  mouth to mouth and stroking her organ, he should utter the following mantra:  “O semen, you have been produced from my every limb,  especially from my heart through the essence of food you are  the essence of the limbs. Bring this woman under my control,  like a deer pierced by a poisoned arrow.”

10.    Now, the wife whom he desires with the thought: “May she not  conceive”�after inserting the member in her and joining  mouth to mouth, he should inhale and then exhale, repeating  the following mantra:  “With power, with semen, I reclaim the semen from you.”  Thus she comes to be without semen.

11.    Now, the wife whom he desires with the thought: “May she  conceive”�after inserting the member in her and joining  mouth to mouth, he should inhale and then exhale, repeating  the following mantra:  “With power, with semen, I deposit semen in you.”  Thus she verily becomes pregnant.

12.    Now, if a man�s wife has a paramour whom he detests, he  should perform the following rite in order to cast an evil spell  upon him:  Let him put fire in an unbaked earthen vessel, spread stalks of  reed and kusa grass inversely and offer in the sacrificial fire the  reed tips, soaked in clarified butter, inversely, repeating the  following mantra:  “You have made a libation in my kindled fire! I take away your  prana and apana, you, _______! Here the name of the evil�doer should be uttered. You have made a libation in my kindled  fire! I take away your sons and cattle, you, _______! You have  made a libation in my kindled fire! I take away your Vedic rites  and those done according to the Smritis, you, _______! You  have made a libation in my kindled fire! I take away your hopes  and expectations, you, _______  He whom a brahmin who knows this rite curses, departs from  this world impotent and shorn of merit. Therefore let no one  even joke with the wife of a Vedic scholar who knows this rite;  for he who has this knowledge is a dangerous enemy.

13.    If a man�s wife has the monthly sickness, she should for three  days drink water from a cup made of bell metal. Let no sudra man or woman touch her. After three nights she should bathe,  put on a new cloth and her husband should make her thresh  rice.

14.    If a man wishes that a son with a fair complexion should be  born to him, that he should study one Veda and that he should  attain a full term of life, then they (husband and wife) should  have rice cooked in milk and eat it with clarified butter. Thus  they should be able to beget such a son.

15.    If a man wishes that a son with a tawny or brown complexion  should be born to him, that he should study two Vedas and that  he should attain a full term of life, then they should have rice  cooked in curds and eat it with clarified butter. Thus they  should be able to beget such a son.

16.    If a man wishes that a son with a dark complexion and red eyes  should be born to him, that he should study three Vedas and  that he should attain a full term of life, then they should have  rice cooked in water and eat it with clarified butter. Thus they  should be able to beget such a son.

17.    If a man wishes that a daughter should be born to him who will  be a scholar and attain a full term of life, then they should have  rice cooked with sesamum and eat it with clarified butter. Thus  they should be able to beget such a daughter.

18.    If a man wishes that a son should be born to him who will be a  famous scholar, frequenting assemblies and speaking delightful  words, a student of all the Vedas and an enjoyer of the full term  of life, he should have rice cooked with the meat of a young  bull or of one more advanced in years and he and his wife  should eat it with clarified butter. Then they should be able to  beget such a son.

19.    Now, towards morning he purifies the clarified butter according  to the rules of Sthalipaka and offers Sthalipaka oblations  repeatedly, saying:  “Svaha to fire! Svaha to Anumati! Svaha to the radiant sun,  who produces infallible results!”  Having made the offering, he takes up the remnant of the  cooked food, eats part of it and gives the rest to his wife. Then  he washes his hands, fills the water�vessel and sprinkles her  thrice with water, uttering once this mantra:  “Get up from here, O Visvavasu! Seek another young woman, a  wife with her husband.”

20.    Then he embraces her, repeating the following mantra:  I am the vital breath and you are speech. You are speech and I  am the vital breath. I am Saman and you are Rig; I am heaven  and you are earth. Come, let us strive together so that we may  have a male child.”

21.    Then he spreads apart her thighs, repeating the following  mantra:  “Spread yourselves apart, Heaven and Earth.”  Inserting the member in her and joining mouth to mouth, he  strokes her three times from head to foot, repeating the  following mantra:  “Let Vishnu make the womb capable of bearing a son! Let  Tvashtra shape the various limbs of the child! Let Prajapati  pour in the semen! Let Dhatra support the embryo! O Sinivali,  make her conceive; O goddess whose glory is widespread,  make her conceive! May the two Atvins, garlanded with  lotuses, support the embryo!

22.    “Let the two Atvins chum the womb with the two golden arani  sticks! I am placing a seed in your womb to be delivered in the  tenth month. As the earth has fire in its womb, as heaven is  pregnant with the sun, as the quarters are impregnated by air, so  I am impregnating you by placing this seed in your womb.”  After the reciting of the mantra, he utters his own name and  that of his wife and places the seed.

23.    When she is about to deliver the child, he sprinkles her with  water, repeating the following mantra:  “As the wind agitates a pond on every side, even so let your  foetus stir and come out along with the chorion. Indra (prana)  made a path when the seed entered the womb. O Indra, follow  200  that path and come out with the foetus and the covering and  cause also the after birth to come forth with the babe.”

24.    When the son is born, he should light a fire, take the child on  his lap, put a mixture of curds and clarified butter in a bell�  metal cup and offer oblations in the fire repeatedly, uttering the  mantra:  “May I increase as the son in my own home and support a  thousand people! May the Goddess of Fortune never depart,  with children and cattle, from his line! Svaha! The vital breath  that is in me, I mentally offer to you. Svaha! If I have done  anything too much or too little in this ceremony, may the all�  knowing and highly beneficent fire make it just right and  proper for me. Svaha!”

25.    The, putting his month to the child�s right ear, he should say  thrice: “Speech! Speech!” Next he would mix together curds,  honey and clarified butter and feed the child with a golden stick  which is not placed inside the month, saying these mantras:  “I put the earth (Bhuh) into you; I put the sky (Bhuvah) into  you; I put heaven (Svah) into you. The whole of earth, sky and  heaven I put into you.”

26.    Then he (the father) gives him (the son) a name: �You are the  Veda (knowledge).” That is his secret name.

27.    Then he presents him to the mother to give him her breast,  uttering the mantra:  “O Sarasvati, that breast of thine which is fruitful, the sustainer  of all, full of milk, the bestower of wealth and generous and by  which thou nourishest all who are worthy�transfer that breast  here to my wife, for my child to suck.

28.    Then he addresses the mother of the child thus:  �You are the adorable Arundhati, the wife of Vasishtha and  with me, who am a man, as your partner you have brought forth  a male child. Be the mother of many male children, for you  have given us a son.

Chapter V�The Line of Teachers 

1.    Now the line of teachers:  The son of Pautimashi received this knowledge from the son of  Katyayani. The son of Katyayani from the son of Gautami. The  son of Gautami from the son of Bharadvaji. The son of  Bharadvaji from the son of Parasari. The son of Parasari from  the son of Aupasvasti. The son of Aupasvasti from the son of  another Parasari. The son of this Parasari from the son of  Katyayani. The son of Katyayani from the son of Kausiki. The  son of Kausiki from the son of Alambi and the son of  Vaiyaghrapadi. The son of Vaiyaghrapadi from the son of  Kanvi and the son of Kapi. The son of Kapi

2.    From the son of Atreyi. The son of Atreyi from the son of  Gautami. The son of Gautami from the son of Bharadvaji. The  son of Bharadvaji from the son of Parasari. The son of Parasari  from the son of Vatsi. The son of Vatsi from the son of another  Parasan.. The son of this Parasan from the son of Varkaruni.  The son of Varkaruni from the son of another Varkaruni. The  son of this Varkaruni from the son of Artabbagi. The son of  Artabbagi from the son of Saungi. The son of Saungi from the  son of Sankriti. The son of Sankriti from the son of  Alambayani. The son of Alambayani from the son of Alambi.  The son of Alambi from the son of Jayanti. The son of Jayanti  from the son of Mandukayani. The son of Mandukayani from  the son of Manduki. The son of Manduki from the son of  Sandili. The son of Sandili from the son of Rathitari. The son of  Rathitari from the son of Bhaluki. The son of Bhaluki from the  two sons of Kraunchiki. The two sons of Kraunchiki from the  son of Vaidabhriti. The son of Vaidabhriti from the son of  Karsakeyi. The son of Karsakeyi from the son of Prachinayogi.  The son of Prachinayogi from the son of Sanjivi. The son of  Sanjivi from Asurivasin, who was the son of Prasni. The son of  Prasni from Asurayana. Asurayana from Asuri. Asuri

3.    From Yajnavalkya. Yajnavalkya from Uddalaka. Uddalaka  from Aruna. Aruna from Upavesi. Upavesi from Kusri. Kusri  from Vajasravas. Vajasravas from Jihvavat, the son of  Badhyoga. Jihvavat, the son of Badhyoga, from Asita, the son  of Varshagana. Asita, the son of Varshagana, from Harita  Kasyapa. Harita Kasyapa from Silpa Kasyapa. Silpa Kasyapa  from Kasyapa, the son of Nidhruva. Kasyapa, the son of  Nidhruva, from Vach. Vach from Ambhini. Ambhini from the sun. These white Yajuses (sacrificial formulas not vitiated by  human blemishes) are explained by Yajnavalkya, belonging to  the Vajasaneyi school.

4.    The line of teachers is the same up to the son of Sanjivi. The  son of Sanjivi received this knowledge from Mandukayani.  Mandukayani from Mandavya. Mandavya from Kautsa. Kautsa  from Mahitthi. Mahitthi from Vamakakshiyana.  Vamakakshiyana from Sandilya. Sandilya from Vatsya. Vatsya  from Kusri. Kusri from Yajnavachas, the son of Rajastamba.  Yajnavachas, the son of Rajastamba, from Tura, the son of  Kavashi. Tura, the son of Kavashi, from Prajapati  (Hiranyagarbha). Prajapati received this knowledge from his  relationship to Brahman (the Vedas). Brahman is self�  existent. Salutation to Brahman.

End of Brihadaranyaka Upanishad  

The Peace Chant  

Om. That is full; this is full. This fullness has been projected  from that fullness. When this fullness merges in that fullness,  all that remains is fullness.  

Om. Peace! Peace! Peace!