Author Topic: CHAPTER 6 - SECTION 3  (Read 474 times)


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« on: April 06, 2019, 04:59:30 PM »
6.3.1. The results of meditation and rites have been stated. Of these, meditation is independent, but rites depend on both divine and human wealth. So for the sake of rites wealth must be acquired, and that in a harmless way. Hence for that purpose the ceremony called Mantha (paste) is being inculcated as a means to attaining greatness; for if greatness is attained, wealth follows as a matter of course.
So the text says: He who wishes to attain greatness, i.e. wants to be great. The reference is to one who desires wealth and is qualified for the performance of rites. The time for the ceremony of Mantha which is sought to be enjoined, is being stated: During the northward march of the sun. This covers a large extent of time, so it is being restricted to a fortnight in which the moon waxes, i.e. the bright fortnight.
That too is a long period; hence, on an auspicious or favourable day, i.e. on calculated to bring success to one’s undertaking. He should undertake for twelve days, counting back from the auspicious day on which he intends to perform the rites and including it, a vow connected with the Upasads. These are well-known rites in connection with the Jyotistoma sacrifice, in which the sacrificer has to drink cow’s milk according to the yield of an increasing and decreasing number of teats of the animals. But since those rites are not to be combined here, only the drinking of milk, without any restriction as to details, is meant.

Objection: If the compound in ‘Upasad-vrata’ is expounded so as to mean ‘the vow that consists of the Upasada,’ then all the details of procedure have to be observed. So why not observe them?
Reply: Because it is a ceremony according to the Smrti. This ceremony of Mantha is enjoined by the Smrti (and not the Sruti).
Objection: How can a ceremony that is enjoined by the Sruti be one in accordance with the Smrti?
Reply: The Sruti here is merely repeating the Smrti. Were it a Vedic ceremony, it would be related to the Jyotistoma sacrifice as a part is to a whole, and as such, must conform to all the characteristics of the main sacrifice. But it is not a Vedic ceremony. For this reason it is also to be performed in the Avasthya (household) fire (Which is not lighted or maintained according to Vedic rites.); and the entire procedure is to be in accordance with the Smrti. So the vow in question is that of living on milk.

Collect in a cup or bowl made of fig wood, in a vessel of this wood, whether shaped like a cup or a bowl the option being with regard to the shape, and not the material, which must be fig wood all herbs that are available and within one’s means: The ten cultivated species such as rice and barley, to be enumerated later on, must be included; ther is no harm in having more. And their grains, as far as available and within ones’ means. The word ‘iti’ is suggestive of the collection of all the materials, that is to say, including all other things that are to be collected. The order of procedure should be understood to be in accordance with the Grhya (Not Srauta Sutras.) Sutras. Sweep and plaster: These are cleaning the ground. Bring in the fire: It is implied that the sacrifice is to be performed in the Avasathya fire, for the word is in the singular, and there is mention of the fire being brought in, which is only possible of a fire that already exists (The three fires, Garhapatya, Ahavaniya and Daksina, connected with Vedic sacrifices, have to be lighted each time.). Spread the Kusa grass. Purify the offerings in the prescribed manner: Since the ceremony is in accordance with the Smrti, the manner referred to is that of the ‘Sthalipaka’ (A religious ceremony observed by householders. The word literally means ‘cooking in a pot.’). Under a male constellation, one having a masculine name, associated with the auspicious day. Interpose the Mantha: Having crushed all those herbs and grains, soaked them in curd, honey and clarified butter in that fig bowl, and rubbed them up with a rod, place the paste between himself and the fire. And offer oblations, with a fig ladle, in a part of the fire prescribed for this purpose, with the following Mantras, beginning with, ‘O Fire, to all those gods.’ etc.

6.3.2.Offering two oblations each time beginning with, ‘Svaha to the oldest, Svaha to the greatest,’ he drips the remnant adhering to the ladle into the paste. The words ‘oldest,’ ‘greatest,’ etc., which are characteristics of the vital force, indicate that only the knower of the vital force is entitled to this ceremony.

6.3.3. Beginning with, ‘Svaha to the organ of generation,’ he offers one oblation each time, and drips the remnant adhering to the ladle into the paste. Then he stirs the paste again with another rod.

6.3.4. Then he touches the paste uttering the Mantra, ‘You move,’ etc.

6.3.5. Then he takes it up with the vessel, in his hand, saying, ‘You know all,’ etc.

6.3.6. Then he drinks it. He drinks the first draught, uttering the first foot of the Gayatri, one portion of the Madhumati and the first Vyahrti (The Vyahrtis are the three syllables ‘Bhur,’ ‘Bhuvar’ and ‘Svar,’ meaning respectively the earth, sky and heaven.). Similarly he drinks the second draught, uttering the second foot of the Gayatri, the second portion of the Madhumati and the second Vyahrti. Likewise the drinks the third draught, uttering the third foot of the Gayatri, the third portion of the Madhumati and the third Vyahrti. Then he repeats the whole Gayatri and the whole Madhumati, and says at the end, ‘May I be all this! Svaha to the earth, sky and heaven.’ Then he drinks the whole remnant. He should arrange beforehand so that the whole quantity of paste may be finished in four draughts. What adhers to the vessel, he should scrape and drink quietly. He washes his hands, and lies behind the fire with his head to the east. After saying his morning prayers, he salutes the sun with the Mantra: ‘Thou art the one lotus of the quarters,’ etc. Then he returns the way he went, sits behind the fire, and repeats the line of teachers.

6.3.7. – 6.3.12. (He repeats the line of teachers) beginning with, Uddalaka, the son of Aruna, taught this, and ending with, Satyakama, the son of Jabala, taught this to his pupils and said, ‘Should one sprinkle it even on a dry stump, branches would surely grow and leaves sprout.’ The teacher Satyakama taught this doctrine of the Mantha, handed down by a single line of teachers beginning with Uddalaka, to a large number of pupils and said. What did he say? Should one sprinkle it, this paste, purified for the purpose of drinking, even on a dry or dead stump, branches would surely grow on that tree, and leaves sprout, as on a living stump. So it goes without saying that this ceremony will fulfil one’s desires. It is a eulogy on this ceremony, meaning that it is infallible in its results. There are six (A pupil, a knower of the Vedas, an intelligent person, one who pays, a dear son, and one who exchanges another branch of learning.) qualified recipients of learning. Of them only two, viz the son of pupil, are being declared as eligible for this doctrine of the Mantha together with the meditation on the vital force.

6.3.13. Four things are made of fig wood. This has been explained. The cultivated grains are ten in number. We have already said that the ten species of cultivated grains must be included. They are being enumerated: rice, barley, sesamum, beans, Anu, called by that name, Priyangu, called in some parts ‘Kangu,’ pulse (Khalva), or Nispava, popularly called ‘Valla,’ and vetches (Khalakula), or Kulattha. In addition to these all other herbs and grains should be procured as far as possible, as we have said, barring only those that are unfit for sacrificial purposes.