V Subrahmanian, Friday, July 11, 2014 9:55 am

The kenopaniShat – Part 7

Part 7

Mantra 2.5

?? ????????? ????????? ? ???????????????? ???????? ? ?????? ?????? ??????? ????? ??????????????????????? ?????? ?

?? here ???? if ??????? knows  ?? then ?????? the true ????? is there ?  ???? if not  ?? here ??????? knows ???? great ???????? loss. ??????  ?????? in every being ??????? realizing ????? the wise ones ??????? departing ??????? from this ?????? world ?????? immortal ?????? they become.

If a man knows the Atman here, he then attains the true goal of life. If he does not know It here, a great destruction awaits him. Having realised the Self in every being, the wise relinquish the world and become immortal. 

Here is a powerful warning from the upani?ad.  If only a man, endowed with all the requisite preparations comes to have the realization of the Self of the stated nature and in the taught manner, then he has truly accomplished the purpose of the human life.  Then alone he can be said to really exist having realized his true nature.  On the other hand if one fails to realize the Self even while alive, then infinite is his loss undoubtedly.  What is this loss?  The perpetuation of the sams?ra characterized by  repeated births, experience of old age, death etc. 

Knowing thus the utility and the disaster (of knowing the Self and remaining ignorant of the Self), the br?hma?a-s, the wise ones, having discerned the One Self which is the Truth in every being, moving and unmoving, with this direct realization, having transcended the world of ‘I’ and ‘mine’ notions that characterize ignorance, rest in the knowledge of being the self-of-all which is the non-dual Truth.  Thus remaining they become immortal, that is, they become verily Brahman.  This is taught by the Mu??akopani?at 3.2.9 ‘he who knows that Supreme Brahman becomes verily Brahman’. 

Here ends the second section of the Kenopani?at.

In the third section is presented a narrative of an incident.  The purpose of the narrative is to ward off the notion that ‘since Brahman is not known, It is non-existent.’  This notion arises from the declaration of this very upani?ad: ‘It (Brahman) is  not known by those who have known It and It is known by those who have not known It.’ (2.3).  The story has for its purport ‘That is verily Brahman that is the Ruler by all means, greater than even the celestials, deva-s, the Supreme Lord of all other lordly ones, extremely difficult to comprehend who is the cause of the victory of the deva-s, the cause of the defeat of the asura-s’.  How indeed could such a One be non-existent? The replies conducive to positively answer this question exist in this story. 

Or the story could be to eulogise the knowledge of Brahman, brahmavidy?.  How? Only due to their knowledge of Brahman did the celestials Agni, etc. attained supremacy over the other deva-s.  Indra excelled even them (due to his knowledge of Brahman). Or it is to present the extreme difficulty involved in apprehending Brahman since the celestials Agni, etc. despite their superior capabilities could get to know Brahman only with great effort and so also Indra, despite his being the Lord of the deva-s.  Or the narrative is to enjoin an injunction regarding the secret teachings of meditations aimed at helping the less-advanced aspirants in their attempt to realize Brahman.  This is because the direct teaching of Brahman has already been done in the foregoing which the advanced aspirant will find most useful.  Yet another reason for the incorporation of the story in the upani?ad is to show that apart from the knowledge of Brahman, all notions of agency, etc. that beings possess, characterized by the conceit the gods engendered owing to their victory over the asura-s, are false, mithy?.

Now begins the actual story.

Mantra 3.1

?????? ? ???????? ???????? ???? ? ???????? ????? ???? ???????? ? ? ?

?????? ? Brahman according to the story ???????? ???????? secured the victory for the gods  ???? ? ???????? ????? by that Brahman’s victory ????? the deva-s ???????? became elated   

Brahman, according to the story, secured a victory for the gods; and by that victory of Brahman the gods became elated.

Brahman, characterized in the foregoing parts of the upani?ad, is Supreme in relation to the deva-s, for their benefit, accomplished victory in the battles between the deva-s and asura-s.  Brahman defeated the asua-s who are the enemies of the world and those who transgress the dictates of dharma that holds the world in place.  Thus Brahman vouchsafed victory and its fruit to the deva-s for ensuring the stability of the world.  However, the deva-s became elated on the victory which truly belongs to Brahman. 

Mantra 3.2

? ??????????????????? ????????????????? ??????? | ???????? ??????? ?????? ? ???????????? ???? ??????? ?????? ???????? ? ? ? 

?? ??????? they thought to themselves ???????? ?? ours alone ??? ????? is this victory ???????? ?? ours alone ??? ????? this glory ??? thus ??? that Brahman ? indeed ???? these ??????? knew ?????? in front of then ? indeed ???????????? It appeared ??? that ? ??????? did not know ???? what ??? this ?????? ???  effulgent being   

They said to themselves: “Verily, this victory is ours; verily, this glory is ours alone.”   Brahman, to be sure, understood it all and appeared before them. But they did not know who that adorable Spirit was. 

When the victory was had, the deva-s did not comprehend that the victory was really that of the Supreme Self that dwells in their being as the innermost Self, the Lord, Omniscient, the dispenser of the fruits of actions of all beings, the omnipotent who is always desirous of maintaining the stability of the world.  Thus, deluded, the deva-s Agni, and others, thought to themselves ‘this victory is indeed ours who are identified with the finite self as Agni, etc. This is our glory alone who are named Agni, V?yu, Indra, etc. that we are experiencing now as the fruit of the victory. And it is not that wrought by the Lord who is our innermost Self. 

Brahman comprehended this erroneous identification of these deva-s who are elated. Being the witness of all and the impeller of all the instruments of all beings in creation, deliberating ‘these deva-s ought not to be deluded in revelling in this erroneous thinking like the asura-s.  Let Me bless them by eradicating their deluded thinking.’ And Brahman for the sake of the deva-s appeared before them perceivable by them as a very unprecedently wonderful and amazing form produced by Its own power of m?y?.  The deva-s, however, did not know the identity of this adorable effulgent being.

Mantra 3.3

??????????????? ?????? ???????????? ??????????????? ????? ? ? ?

?? they ??????? ???????? instructed Agni ?????? Oh J?taveda ???? this ???????? know ???? what ???? this ??????  adorable being ???  is ??? ??? (Agni replied), ‘So be it.’

They said to Agni (Fire): “O Agni! Find out who this great Spirit is.” “Yes,” he said.

The deva-s could not identify the effulgent being that had appeared before them. They were perplexed and also smitten by fear internally.  However, they were intent on knowing the identity of the resplendent object.  They addressed Agni (‘who goes ahead of all’, etymologically, the Lord of Fire, virtually omniscient): ‘Oh, J?taveda, you being powerful among us, find out clearly as to who this entity that appears before us is’.

Mantra 3.4

???????????????????? ???????????????? ???????????????????????? ?? ????????? ? ? ?

??? ?????????? Agni hastened to It ??? ???????? Brahman asked him  ?? ??? ??? ‘who are you?’ ?????? ?? ???? ????? ‘I am Agni’ ??? ???????? thus he replied ??????? ?? ???? ????? ??? ‘I am j?taved?’

Agni hastened to It. Brahman asked him: “Who are you?” He replied: “I am known as Agni; I am also called J?taved?.’

Agni, in obedience to the other devas’ instruction approached the Effulgent Being, Yak?a.  Agni, intending to ask about the identity of the Yak?a, however, was baffled by the stature thereof and remained silent without asking.  So, the Yak?a himself asked Agni ‘Who are you?’ Thus questioned by Brahman, Agni replied ‘I am Agni, well known by this name.  I am J?taved? too.’  Thus, by this twin-name Agni boastfully replied.

Mantra 3.5

????????????? ??? ?????????????? ????? ????? ????? ???????????? ? ? ?

(Brahman asked Agni) ???????? ????? ??? In you what ??????? ??? power is there? ??? ??? ????? all these ????? I can burn ??? ??? whatever is there ?????????? on this earth ??? thus replied Agni.

Brahman said: “What power is in you, who are so well known?” Fire replied: “I can burn all— whatever there is on earth.”

Hearing the twin-name uttered by Agni, Brahman, the Yak?a, asked ‘In such a popular named one, you, what capacity is there?’ He replied, ‘I can burn down to ashes whatever is there in this earth that is moving and unmoving.’ The word ‘earth’ is only representative since what is in the heavens also can be burnt by Agni. 

Part 1, Part 6, Part 8

Warning: Use of undefined constant php - assumed 'php' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /homepages/26/d757526286/htdocs/ADVAITAACADEMY/wp-content/themes/advaita/single.php on line 102

Recent articles