Author Topic: CHAPTER 1  (Read 273 times)


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« on: April 07, 2019, 05:06:17 PM »
1.1 Kena, by what agent; being isitam, willed, directed; manah, the mind; patati, goes, goes towards its own object-this is the construction. Since the root is cannot be taken here to imply either repetition or going; ['Since the intention here is not to make the mind an object of the concept of either repeated occurrence or going, and since the desire is for knowing some special director of the mind.'-A.G.] it must be understood that the present form of the root is in its sense of desiring. The form in which the suffix it is used in the word isitam is a Vedic licence [The correct form should have been 'esitam.'-A.G.]. Presitam is a form of the same root, with pra prefixed to it, in the sense of directing. If the word presitam alone were used (without isitam) there would arise such an inquiry about the particular kind of director and the direction as; 'By what particular director? And how is the direction?' But the attribute isitam being there, both the questions are set at rest, because thereby is ascertained a special meaning, viz 'directed (presitam) through whose mere will ?' [' By mere presence that involves no effort.'-A.G.]

Objection: If this be the meaning intended, the purpose is served by the expression willed by alone, and the expression directed need not be used. Moreover, since it is reasonable that an additional word should imply an additional meaning, it is proper to understand some special sense as: 'By what is it directed-by will, act, or speech?'
Answer: This cannot be so because of the trend of the question. For the reasonable conclusion derived from the trend (of the question) is that the inquiry is made by a man who has become disgusted with the ephemeral works and their results, such as the assemblage of the body, senses, etc., and seeks to know something other than these, which is unchangeable and eternal. If it were not so, the question would be surely meaningless, since the directorship of the group of body etc. (over the mind) through will, word, and act is a familiar fact.

Objection: Even so, the sense of the word directed is not certainly brought out.
Answer: No, since the word directed can reasonably convey a special sense, viz that it is the question of a man in doubt. Both the adjectives isitam (willed) and presitam (directed), in the sentence willed by whom the directed mind goes, are justifiable as implying: 'Does the directorship belong to the aggregate of body and senses, which is a well-known fact; or does the directorship through mere will, over the mind etc., belong to some independent entity which is different from the aggregate?'

Objection: Is it not a well-known fact that the mind is free and goes independently to its own object? How can the question arise with regard to that matter?
The answer is this: If the mind were independent in engaging and disengaging itself, then nobody would have contemplated any evil. And yet the mind, though conscious of consequences, wills evil; and though dissuaded, it does engage in deeds of intensely sorrowful result. Hence the question, kenesitam patati etc., is appropriate. Kena, by whom; Pranah, the vital force; being yuktah, engaged, directed; praiti, goes, towards its own activity? Prathamah, first, should be an adjective of the vital force, for the activities of all the organs are preceded by it. Imam vacam, this speech, consisting of words; which ordinary people vadanti, utter; kena isitam, by whom is it willed (during that utterance)? Similarly, kah u devah, which effulgent being; yunakti, engages, directs towards their respective objects; caksuh srotram, the eyes and the ears? To the worthy disciple who had asked thus, the teacher said, 'Hear what you have asked for in the question, "Who is that effulgent being who is the director of the mind and other organs towards their own objects, and how does he direct?"'

1.2 Srotrasya srotram, the Ear of the ear. The srotram is that by which one hears, the instrument for the hearing of sound, the organ of hearing which reveals words. He about whom you put the question, 'Who is the effulgent being who directs the eyes and the ears?'-is the Ear of the ear.

Objection: Is it not incongruous to answer, 'He is the Ear of the ear', when the reply should have been, 'So-and-so, with such and such attributes, directs the ears etc.'?
Answer: This is no fault, because His distinction cannot be ascertained otherwise. If the director of the ears etc. could be known as possessed of His own activity, independently of the activities of the ears etc. just as it is in the case of the wielder of sickle etc., then this answer would be incongruous. But as a matter of fact, no director of ears etc., possessed of his own activity, is apprehended here like a mower possessed of a sickle etc. But He can be known (as existing unmixed with the ear etc.) from the logical necessity that such activities as deliberation, volition, determination, of those very composite things, viz the ear etc., must be meant for some one,s benefit. Just as in the case of a house, so also (in this case) there does exist some one, standing outside the conglomeration of ears etc., by whose necessity is impelled the group of ears etc. Thus from the fact that composite things exist for the need of some one else, a director of the ears etc. can be known (i.e., inferred). ['Ears etc. are subsidiary to some one different from themselves, for they are composite things, like a house etc.-by this inference the master of the ears etc. can be known. If he, too, should be a part of the combination, then he will be insentient like the house etc. Then we shall have to imagine another master for him, and so also a third for this. Thus to avoid an infinite regress, a Consciousness that is not a part of the combination is apprehended.'-A.G.] Hence the reply, 'He is the Ear of the ear', etc. is quite appropriate.

Objection: What, again, can there be in the significance here of the expression, 'The Ear of the ear' etc? For just as a light has no need
for another light, so in this context the ear can have no need for another ear.
Answer: There is no such fault. The significance here of the expression is this: The ear, to wit, is seen to be able to reveal its own object. This ability of the ear to reveal its own object is possible only when the eternal non-composite, all-pervading light of the Self is there, but not otherwise. Hence the expression, 'Ear of the ear' etc. is justifiable. To the same effect there are other Vedic texts: 'It is through the light of the Self that he sits' (Br. IV. iii. 6), 'Through His light all this shines' (Ka. II. ii. 15; Sv. VI. 14; Mu. II. ii. 10), 'Kindled by which light the sun shines' (Tai. B. III. xii. 9.7), etc. And in the Gita, '(Know that light to be mine), which is in the sun and which illumines the whole universe' (XV. 12), and '(As the one sun illumines the whole universe), so does He who reside in the body, O descendant of Bharata, illumine the whole body' (XIII. 33). So also in the Katha Upanisad, 'the eternal among the ephemeral, the the consciousness among all that is conscious' (II. ii. 13). It is a commonly accepted belief that the ears etc. constitute the Self of all, and that these are conscious. This is being refuted here. There does exist something which is known to the intellect of the men of realization, which dwells in the inmost recesses of all, which is changeless, undecaying, immortal, fearless, and unborn, and which is the Ear etc., of even the ear etc., i.e. the source of their capacity to act. Thus the answer and significance of the words can certainly be justified.

Similarly, manasah, of the mind, of the internal organ; (He is) the manah, Mind; because the internal organ is not able to perform its own functions-thinking, determination, etc.-unless it is illumined by the light of consciousness. Therefore He is the Mind of the mind, too. Here the mind and the intellect are jointly mentioned by the word manah (mind). Yad vaco ha vacam: the word yat, used in the sense of because, is connected with all such words as srotra (ear) in this way: because He is the Ear of the ear, because He is the Mind of the mind, and so on. The objective case in vaca ha vacam is to be changed into the nominative in consonance with the expression pranasya pranah (the Life of life).

Objection: In conformity with vaco ha vacam, why should not the conversion be into the objective case thus; pranasya pranam?
Answer: No, for it is reasonable to conform to the majority. So in consonance with the two words, (sah and pranah), in sah u pranasya pranah (where they are in the nominative case), the implication of the word vacam is vak, for thus is the reasonable conformity with the majority maintained. Moreover, a thing asked about should properly be denoted in the first (nominative) case. He, of whom you ask, and who is the Life of prana-of that praticular function called life, by Him, indeed, is ensured the capacity of the vital force to discharge its functions of sustaining life, and this is because there can be no sustaining of life by anything that is not presided over by the Self, in accordance with the Vedic texts: 'Who, indeed, will inhale, and who will exhale, if this Bliss (Brahman) be not there in the supreme Space (within the heart)?' (Tai. II. vii. 1), 'Who pushes the prana upward and impels the apana inward' (Ka. II. ii. 3), etc. Here, too, it will be said, 'That which man does not smell with prana (the organ of smell), but that by which prana is implelled, know that to be Brahman' (1.9).

Objection: Is it not proper to understand prana as the sense of smelling (and not life) [The word prana is used in different senses in different contexts. It may mean vital force, exhaling, sense of smell, etc.] in a context which deals with the senses-ears etc.?
Answer: This is true. But the text considers that by the mention of prana (meaning the vital force) the sense of smell is referred to ipso facto. The meaning intended in the context in this: That for whose purpose occurs the activity of all the (motor and sensory) organs is Brahman.
So also He is the caksusah caksuh, the Eye of the eye; the capacity to perceive colour that the eye, the organ of sight, possesses is merely by virtue of its being presided over by the consciousness of the Self. Hence He is the Eye of the eye. Since a questioner's desire is to know the thing he asks for, the expression, 'having known has to be supplied thus: 'Having known Brahman, as the Ear etc. of the ear etc., as indicated before.' This (addition) is also necessary, because the result is stated thus, 'They become immortal' (II. 5), and because the result is stated thus, 'They become immortal' (II. 5), and because immortality is attained through realization. From the fact that a man becomes free after getting realization, it follows (that he becomes immortal) by giving up, (through the strength of knowledge), the group of organs beginning with the ear; that is to say, since by identifying the Self with the ear etc. a man becomes conditioned by these and takes birth, dies, and transmigrates, therefore having realized, as one's Self, the Brahman that is defined as the 'Ear of the ear' etc., and atimucya, giving up selfidentification with the ear etc.-(he becomes immortal). Those who give up self-identification with the ear etc. are the dhirah, intelligent, because the selfidentification with the ear etc. cannot be given up unless one is endowed with uncommon intellect. Pretya, desisting; asmat lokat, from this world of emperical dealings involving ideas of 'I and mine' with regard to sons, friends, wives, and relatives; i.e. having renounced all desires; (they) bhavanti, become; amrtah, immortal, immune from death. This is in accordance with the Vedic texts: 'Not by work, not by progeny, not by wealth, but by renunciation some (rare ones) attained immortality, (Kai. 1.2), 'The self-existent Lord destroyed the outgoing senses; hence one perceives the external things and not the Self within. A rare, discriminating man, longing for immortality, turns his eyes away and then sees the indwelling Self (Ka. II. i. 1), 'When all desires that cling to one's heart fall off, ....then one attains Brahman here' (Ka. II. iii. 14), etc. Or, renunciation of desires being implied in the expression atimucya (giving up) itself, asmat lokat pretya means separating from this body, dying.

1.3 Since Brahman, as the Ear etc. of the ear etc., is the Self of those organs, therefore, tatra, there, to that Brahman; caksuh, the eye; na gacchati, does not go; for it is not possible to go to oneself. Similarly na vak gacchati, speech does not go. When a word, as expressed by the organ of speech, reveals its own idea, speech is said to go to its object. But Brhaman is the Self of that word, as also of the organ that utters it; therefore speech does not go. Just as fire, which burns and illumines, does not burn or illumine itself, similarly is this so. No manah, nor the mind. Though the mind thinks and determines other things, it does not think or determine itself; for of it, too, Brahman is the Self. A thing is cognized only by the mind and the senses. As Brahman is not an object of perception to these, therefore, na vidmah, we do not know, 'That Brahman is of this kind'. Hence na vijanimah, we are not aware of; yatha, the process by which; etat, this Brahman; anusisyat, should be taught, instructed to a disciple-this is the significance. For, a thing that is perceived by the senses can be taught to another through categories denoting class, quality, and action. Brahman is not possessed of these categories, viz class etc.; hence it is very difficult to convince the disciples about It through instruction. In this way the Upanisad shows the necessity of putting forth great effort in the matter of imparting instruction and comprehending its meaning.

The contingency of the total denial of any process of instruction having arisen from the text, 'We do not know Brahman, and hence we are not aware of any process of instructing about It', an exception to this is being stated in the next verse. True it is that one cannot impart knowledge about the Highest with the help of such means of valid knowledge as the evidence of the senses; but the knowledge can be produced with the help of tranditional aurthority. Therefore traditional authority [The word used by Sankara is agama, which leterally means traditional knowledge which has come down through the line of teachers and pupils. By quoting traditional teaching one does not expose one-self to the charge of speaking about something that defies speech.] is being quoted for the sake of imparting instruction about It:

1.4 Anyat eva, different indeed; is tat, that which is the topic under discussion and which has been spoken of as the Ear etc., of the ear etc., and as beyond their reach. It is, indeed, different from the known. The known is very much within the grasp of the act of knowing, that which is the object of the verb, 'to known'. Inasmuch as everything is known somewhere by somebody, all that is manifested is certainly known. The idea is that, It (Brahman) is different from that. Lest, in that case, It should be unknown, the text says, (It is,) atho, again; different aviditat, from the unknown, from what is opposed to the known, from that which consists of the unmanifested ignorance, which is the seed of the manifested. The word adhi, used in the sense of 'above', means 'different' by a figure of speech; for it is well-known that anything that exists above another is different from that other. Whatever is known is limited, mortal, and full of misery; and hence it is to be rejected. So when it is said that Brahman is different from the known it amounts to asserting that It is not to be rejected. Similarly, when it is affirmed that It is different from the unknown, it amounts to saying that It is not a thing to be obtained. It is for the sake of getting an effect, indeed, that somebody different from it acquires some other thing to serve as a cause. For this reason, too, nothing different (from the Self) need be acquired to serve any purpose distinct from the knower (Self). Thus the statement, that Brahman is different from the known and the unknown, having amounted to Brahman being denied as an object to be acquired or rejected, the desire of the disciple to know Brahman (objectively) comes to an end, for Brahman is nondifferent from the Self. (Or, according to a different reading-the desire of the disciple to know a Brahman different from the Self, comes to an end). [The expression concerned is svatmano' nanyatvat brahmavisaya jijnasa, or svatmano' nyabrahmavisaya jijnasa.] For nothing other than one's own Self can possibly be different from the known and the unknown. Thus it follows that the meaning of the sentence is that the Self is Brahman. And this also follows from such Vedic texts as: 'This Self is Brahman' (Ma. 2; Br. II. v. 19, IV. iv. 5), 'that Self which is untouched by sin' (Ch. VIII. vii. 1), 'the Brahman that is immediate and direct-the Self that is within all' (Br. III. iv. 1), etc. In this way, the text, 'Thus we heard' etc., states how through a succession of preceptors and disciples, was derived the purport of the sentence which establishes as Brahman that Self of all which is devoid of all distinguishing features, and is the light of pure consciousness. Moreover, Brahman is to be known only through such a traditional instruction of preceptors and not through argumentation, nor by study (or exposition), intelligence, great learning, austerity, sacrifices, etc. -iti, such (was what) ; susruma, we heard; purvesam, of the ancient teachers; the teachers ye, who; vyaccaksire, explained, taught clearly; nah to us; tat, that Brahman.

The idea that the Self is Brahman having been established through the sentence, 'That is surely different from the known, and again, that is above the unknown', the hearer has this doubt: 'How can the Self the Brahman? For the Self is familarly known to be that which is entitled to undertake rites and meditation and which, being subject to birth and death, seeks to attain either the gods headed by Brahma (Creator ) or heaven by undertaking the practice of rites or meditation. Therefore some adorable being other that that (Self), e.g. Visnu, Isvara (Siva), Indra, or Prana (vital force or Hiranyagarbha) may well be Brahman, but not so the Self; for this is opposed to common sense. Just as other logicians say that the Self is different from the Lord, so also the ritualists worship other gods saying, "Sacrifice to that one", "Sacrifice to that one". Therefore it is reasonable that, that should be Brahman which is known and adorable; and the worshipper should be one who is different from this.' Having noticed this doubt either from the looks or the words of the disciple, the teacher said, 'Don't be in doubt thus;'-

1.5 Yat, that-whose essence consists of Consciousness alone-, which; (is not uttered) vaca, by speech-. Vak (speech) is the organ which, clinging to the eight localities, viz the root of the tongue etc. [Chest, throat, head, root of the tongue, teath, nose, lips, and palate.] , and being presided over by (the god of) Fire, expresses the letters. The letters, too, as limited in their number and as subject to a certain sequence, in conformity with the meaning intended to be conveyed, are also called vak. [The word gau (cow), for instance, consists of the letter g and au which are fixed as regards their sequence so as to be able to express the meaning cow. This is the view of the Mimamsaka school.] Thus also the soud expressible by them, which is the pada (sphota), [This is the view of the Sphotavadi grammarians. 'Sphota is derived from the root sphut in the sense of that which is manifested by letters, i.e., that which imparts definite knowledge of word (pada), sentence, etc. Their idea is that this (pada-) sphota has to be admitted since a unified idea (conveyed by the word) cannot be contingent on a multiplicity of letters.'-A.G.] is called vak. this is in accordance with the Vedic text: 'The letter a, indeed, is all speech. ['That power of Consciousness is vak which is indicated by Om, in which a predominates. (Om is a combination of a, u, m), and this Om is called sphota,-A.G.] And that speech, being manifested as the sparsa letters, the antahstha letters (semi-vowels), and usma letters (aspirates), [Sparsa-25 consonants from ka to ma; antahstha-y, r, l, v; usma-s, s, s, h.] becomes many and multifarious' (Ai. A. II. iii. 7. 13). (Yat, that which) is anabhyuditam, not expressed, not uttered; vaca, by vak, by speech, which has these modifications, viz regulated (material, Rk), non-regulated (prose Yujuh), musical (Sama), true, and false-by that vak which becomes defined as words and to which the organ of speech is subordinate; ['The power of speech that human beings have, is established in sounds and letters, for it is expressed by these.'] yena, that by which-that Brahman, the light of Consciousness, by which-; vak, speech, together with its organs; abhyudyate, is uttered, is expressed, that is to say, is used in relations to the desired meaning-. That which has been spoken of here as 'the Speech of speech' (1.2), and as 'When It speaks, It is called the organ of speech' (Br. I. iv. 7), and 'He who controls the organ of speech from within' (Br. III. vii. 17), etc., in the Brhadaranyaka Upanisad, and about whom the question has been raised thus, 'The (power of) speech that is found in men, is established in sounds. Does any Brahmana know it?', and the answer has been given by saying, 'That by which one speaks is dream is speech,- that eternal power of speech which a speaker has is vak which is in essence, the light of Consciousness. And this follows from the Vedic text, 'For the speaker's power of speech can never be lost' (Br. IV. iii. 26). Tat eva, that indeed, that Self in its true nature; tvam, you; viddhi, know; as brahma, Brahman-(so called) because of its extensity (or unsurpassability)-that which is allsurpassing and is called Bhuma, great (Ch. VII. xxiii. 1). The significance of the word eva is this: Know the Self alone to be the unconditioned Brahman after eradicating all such adjuncts as speech because of which there occur such empirical expressions, with regard to the transcendental, unconditioned, unsurpassable, and equipoised Brahman, as 'It is the Speech of speech', 'the Eye of the eye', 'the Ear of the ear', 'the Mind of the mind', the agent, the enjoyer, the knower, the controller, governor. 'Consciousness, Bliss, Brahman' (Br. III. ix. 28.7), etc. Na idam, this is not; brahma, Brahman; Yat, which; people upasate, meditate on; as idam, this, (as a limited object) possessed of distinctions created by limiting adjuncts-as a non-Self, e.g. God, etc. Although in the sentence, 'Know that alone to be Brahman', it has already been stated that the non-Self is not Brahman, still with a view to enounciating as explicit rule (that leaves no scope for option) the idea is repeated in the sentence, 'This is not Brahman'; or this may be with a view to excluding the identification of Brahman with what is not Brahman.
[In Mimamsa philosophy Niyama-vidhi pins one down to one thing only when alternatives are possible. Here the possibilities are, thinking of both Brahman and non-Brahman as Brahman. And the rule fixes us to the pursuit of Brahman only. Parisankhyavidhi merely excludes something-here the thought of non-Brahman as Brahman. So the text may be interpreted from either point of view.]

1.6 Manas means the internal organs, mind and intellect being taken as one entity. The word manas, derived from the root man in the sense of that by which one thinks, is common to all organs, since, it embraces all objects. In accordance with the Vedic text, 'Desire, deliberation, doubt, faith, want of faith, steadiness, unsteadiness, shame, intelligence, and fear-all these are but the mind' (Br. I. v. 3), mind is that which has desire etc. as its functions. Yat, that-the light of Consciousness illumining the mind-, which; one na manute, does not think nor determine, with that mind, because It rules the mind by virtue of being the enlightener of the mind-. Since the Self, indeed, constitutes the essence of everything, therefore the mind cannot act with regard to its own Self. The mind can think only when it is illumined by the light of Consciousness within. That Brahman, yena, by which;-they, the knowers of Brahman, ahuh, say-; manas, the mind, together with its modes; matam, is tought of, encompassed-. Therefore viddhi, know, tat eva, that very one, the Self of the mind, the internal illuminator, as Brahman. Na idam, etc. is to be understood as before.

1.7 Yat, that which; caksusa, with the eye, associated with the functions of the internal organ; na pasyati, (a man) does not see, does not make an object of perception; yena, that by which; man pasyati; sees, perceives, encompasses, through the light of Consciousness; caksumsi, the activities of the eye-diversified in accordance with the modes of the internal organ-. Tat eva, etc., as before.

1.8 Yat srotrena na srnoti, that which man does not hear with the ear, that is presided over by the deity of the quarters, that is produced from akasa, and that is connected with the activity of the mind; yena, that by which, by which light of Consciousness; idam srotram srutam, this will-known ear is encompassed-. Tat eva, etc., as before.

1.9 Pranena, by the organ of smell, produced from earth, existing in the nostrils, and associated with the activities of the internal organ and the vital force; yat, that which; man na praniti, does not smell, does not comprehend like smell; yena, that light of the Self by which; pranah, the organ of smell-being illumined as an object; praniyate, is impelled-towards its own object-. All the rest, tat eva etc., is just like what has gone before.

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