Ashwamedha Parva

Created by Jijith Nadumuri at 01 Apr 2010 09:54 and updated at 01 Apr 2010 09:54


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Section 21

XXI The Brahmana said, In this connection is cited the following ancient story. Do thou understand, of what kind the institution is of the ten Hotris sacrificing priests. The ear, the skin, the two eyes, the tongue, the nose, the two feet, the two hands, the genital organ, the lower duct, and speech, these, O beautiful one, are the ten sacrificing priests. Sound and touch, colour and taste, scent, speech, action, motion, and the discharge of vital seed, of urine and of excreta, are the ten libations. The points of the compass, Quarters, Wind, Sun, Moon, Earth, Fire, Vishnu, Indra, Prajapati, and Mitra, these, O beautiful one, are the ten sacrificial fires. The ten organs of knowledge and action are the sacrificing priests. The libations, O beautiful one, are ten. The objects of the senses are the fuel that are cast into these ten fires as also the mind, which is the ladle, and the wealth viz, the good and bad acts of the sacrificer.

What remains is the pure, highest knowledge. We have heard that all this universe was well differentiated from Knowledge. All objects of knowledge are Mind. Knowledge only perceives ie, discovers the Mind without being attached to it. The knower or Jiva, encased in subtle form, lives within the gross body that is produced by the vital seed. The bearer of the body is the Garhapatya fire. From that is produced another. Mind is the Ahavaniya fire. Into it is poured the oblation. From that was produced the Veda or Word; then was born Mind; Mind desirous of creation sets itself on the Veda or the Word.

Their arises form or colour undistinguished by particular colours. It runs towards the Mind The Brahmana's wife said, Why did Word first arise and why did Mind arise afterwards, seeing that Word starts into existence after having been thought upon by Mind? Upon that authority can it be said that Mati Prana takes refuge in Mind. Why, again, in dreamless slumber, though separated from Mind, does not Prana apprehend all objects? What is that which restrains it then The Brahmana said, The Apana breath, becoming the lord ie, bringing the Prana under its control, in consequence of such lordship over it, makes it identical with itself. That restrained motion of the Prana breath which for the time becomes identical with that of the Apana has been said to be the motion of the mind. Hence the mind is dependent upon Prana, not Prana upon the mind. Therefore, in dreamless slumber, upon the disappearance of mind, Prana does not disappear.

But since thou askest me a question about word and mind, I shall, therefore, relate to thee a discourse between them. Both Word and Mind, repairing to the Soul of matter asked him, Do thou say who amongst us is superior. Do thou, O puissant one, dispel our doubt, On that occasion, the holy one made this answer, The mind undoubtedly is superior. Unto him Word said, I yield to thee the fruition of all thy desires The Brahmana said, Know that I have two minds, immovable and movable. That which is immovable is, verily, with me; the movable is in your dominion That mind is verily called movable which, in the form of Mantra, letter, or voice, is referable to your dominion. Hence, thou art superior to the other mind which concerns itself with only the external world.

But since, coming of thy own accord, O beautiful one, thou enterest into the engagement about the fruition of all wishes, therefore, filling myself with breath, I utter thee The goddess Word used always to dwell between Prana and Apana. But, O blessed one, sinking into Apana, though urged upwards, in consequence of becoming dissociated from Prana, she ran to Prajapati and said, Be gratified with me, O holy one, The Prana appeared, once more fostering Word. Hence, Word, encountering deep exhalation, never utters anything. Word always flows as endued with utterance or unendued with it Amongst those two, Word without utterance is superior to Word with utterance. Like a cow endued with excellent milk, she Word without utterance yields diverse kinds of meaning. This one always yields the Eternal viz, Emancipation, speaking of Brahman. O thou of beautiful smiles, Word is a cow, in consequence of her puissance which is both divine and not divine.

Behold the distinction of these two subtle forms of Word that flow The Brahmana's wife said, What did the goddess of Word then say, in days of old, when, though impelled by the Wish to speak, Speech could not come out The Brahmana said, The Word that is generated in the body by Prana, then attains to Apana from Prana. Then transformed into Udana and issuing out of the body, envelops all the quarters, with Vyana. After that, she dwells in Samana. Even in this way did Word formerly speak. Hence Mind, in consequence of being immovable, is distinguished, and the goddess Word, in consequence of being movable, is also distinguished'

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