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English translation of
Holy Upanishads - Chhandogya Upanishad

English translation by Swami Nikhilananda
taken from http://sanatan.intnet.mu/

Part 4

Chapter I - The Story of Janasruti and Raikva

1
There once lived a king named Janasruti, who was a great-grandson of Janasruta. He bestowed his gifts with respect, gave away liberally and cooked much food for the hungry. He built rest-houses every-where with the thought that people everywhere would eat his food.

2
One night some flamingos were flying along. One flamingo said to another: "Hey! Ho! Short-sighted, Short-sighted! The radiance of Janasruti, the great-grandson of Janasruta, has spread to the sky. Do not touch it, lest it should burn you."

3
The other replied: "Say, who is this person about whom you have spoken as though he were like Raikva, the man with the cart?"
"What sort of person is this Raikva, the man with the cart?"

4
The short-sighted flamingo replied: "As in a game of dice, when the krita is won, the lower ones also are won, so whatever merits people acquire all accrue to that Raikva. As Raikva I describe him, too, who knows what Raikva knows."

5-6
Janasruti the great-grandson of Janasruta overheard this conversation. Immediately after getting out of bed, he said to his attendant:
"Friend, did you speak of me as though I were Raikva, the man with the cart?"
"What sort of person is Raikva, the man with the cart?"
"As in a game of dice, when the krita is won, the lower ones also are won, so whatever merits people acquire all accrue to that Raikva. As Raikva I describe him, too, who knows what Raikva knows."

7
The attendant searched for him and returned without finding him. Then the king said to him: "Listen, where a knower of Brahman is to searched for, look for him there."

8
After proper search the attendant came upon a person who, lying underneath his cart, was scratching an itch. Humbly he took his seat near him and said: "Revered Sir, are you Raikva, the man with the cart?"
"Oh yes, I am he," he answered.
Then the attendant returned, saying to himself: "I have found him out."

Chapter II - Dialogue of Raikva and Janasruti (I)

1-2
Then Janasruti the great-grandson of Janasruta took with him six hundred cows, a necklace and a chariot with mules and went to Raikva and said:
"Raikva, here are six hundred cows, a necklace and a chariot with mules. Pray, revered Sir, teach me the deity whom you worship."

3
To him the other said: "Ah, may the necklace and the chariot remain with you, O Sudra, along with the cows."
Thereupon Janasruti the great-grandson of Janasruta took with him a thousand cows, a chariot with mules, a necklace and his own daughter, too and went to Raikva.

4
Janasruti said to him: "Raikva, here are a thousand cows, a necklace, a chariot with mules, this wife and this village where you shall dwell. Revered Sir, teach me."

5
Then considering her (the princess) as the door for imparting knowledge, Raikva said: "O Sudra! You brought these cows and other presents; this is good. But you will make me speak now only through this means (i.e. the princess)."
These are the villages named Raikvaparna, in the country of Mahavrishas, where Raikva lived.
Now Raikva said to the king:

Chapter III - Dialogue of Raikva and Janasruti (II)

1
"Verily, Vayu (the air) is the swallower (samvarga). For when fire goes out it is indeed swallowed by the air. When the sun sets it is swallowed by the air. When the moon sets it is swallowed by the air.

2
"When water dries up it is swallowed by the air. For indeed the air absorbs them all. So much with reference to the gods.

3
"Now with reference to the body: Verily, the prana is the swallower. When a man sleeps, speech goes into the prana, sight goes into the prana, hearing goes into the prana and the mind goes into the prana. For indeed the prana absorbs them all.

4
"These are the two swallowers: the air among the gods, the prana among the senses."

5
Once Saunaka of the line of Kapi and Abhipratarin, the son of Kakshasena, were being waited upon at their meal, when a brahmacharin begged food of them. They did not give him anything.

6
He said: "One God, Prajapati, swallowed the four great ones. He is the Guardian of the world. O descendent of Kapi, O Abhipratarin, mortals do not see Him though he abides in manifold forms. Verily, this food has not been given to Him to whom it belongs."

7
Sanaka of the line of Kapi, pondering on those words, went to the brahmacharin and said: "He is the self of the gods, the creator of all beings, with unbroken teeth, the eater, the truly wise one. They speak of His magnificence as great, because without being eaten, He eats even what is not common food. O brahmacharin, we meditate upon this Brahman."
Then he said to the attendants: "Give him food."

8
They gave food to him. Now these five (i.e. the eater vayu and fire, the sun, the moon and water, which are its food) and those five (i.e. the eater prana and the organs of speech, the eye, the ear and the mind, which are its food) make ten. These together constitute the krita (the highest throw in a game of dice). On account of this similarity of ten, these ten are the food in the ten quarters and further, they are Virat, the eater of food, by which all this becomes seen. All this he sees and the eater of food he becomes, who knows this, yea, who knows this.

Chapter IV - The Story of Satyakama

1
Once upon a time, Satyakama the son of Jabala addressed his mother and said: "Revered Mother, I wish to become a brahmacharin. Of what ancestry am I?"

2
She said to him: "I do not know, my child, of what ancestry you are. In my youth I was preoccupied with many household duties and with attending on guests when I conceived you. I do not know of what ancestry you are. I am Jabala by name and you are Satyakama. So you may speak of yourself as Satyakama Jabala (the son of Jabala).

3
He came to Gautama the son of Haridrumata and said: "Revered Sir, I wish to live with you as a brahmacharin. May I approach you, as a pupil?"

4
Gautama said to him: "Of what ancestry are you, dear friend?" Satyakama said: "I do not know, Sir, of what ancestry I am. I asked my mother about it and she replied: ‘In my youth I was preoccupied with many household duties and with attending on guests when I conceived you. I do not know of what ancestry you are. I am Jabala by name and you are Satyakama.’ I am therefore, Sir, Satyakama Jabala."

5
Gautama said: "None but a true brahmin would thus speak out. Fetch the fuel, dear friend; I shall initiate you. You have not departed from truth."
He initiated Satyakama. Having separated out four hundred lean and weak cows from his herd, he said: "Dear friend, go with these."
Driving them away toward the forest, Satyakama said: "I shall not return until they become a thousand." He lived a number of years in the forest.
When the cows had become a thousand-

Chapter V - Instruction by the Bull

1
The bull of the herd, addressing him, said: "Satyakama!"
"Revered Sir!" Satyakama replied.
The bull said: "Dear friend, we have become a thousand, take us to teacher’s house.

2
"I will declare to you one foot of Brahman."
"Declare it, Revered Sir."
The bull said to him: "The east is one quarter, the west is one quarter, the south is one quarter, the north is one quarter. This, dear friend, is foot of Brahman, consisting of four quarters and this foot is called Prakasavat (shining).

3
"He who knows this and meditates on the foot of Brahman consisting four quarters as shining, becomes shining on this earth. He conquers shining worlds-he who knows this and meditates on the foot of Brahman consisting of four quarters as shining."

Chapter VII - Instruction by Fire

1
The bull further said: "Agni (fire) will declare to you another foot of Brahman."
Satyakama then, when it was the morrow, drove the cows in the direction of the teacher’s house. And when they came together toward evening, he lighted a fire, penned the cows, laid fuel on the fire and sat down behind the fire, facing the east.

2
Agni (fire), addressing him, said: "Satyakama!"
"Revered Sir!" Satyakama replied.

3
"Dear friend, I will declare to you one foot of Brahman."
"Declare it, revered Sir."
Agni said to him: "The earth is one quarter, the sky is one quarter, heaven is one quarter, the ocean is one quarter. This, dear friend, is one foot of Brahman, consisting of four quarters and this foot is called Anantavat (endless).

4
"He who knows this and meditates on the foot of Brahman consisting of four quarters as endless, becomes endless on this earth. He conquers endless worlds-he who knows this and meditates on the foot of Brahman consisting of four quarters as endless."

Continued...

Chapter VII - Instruction by the Swan

1
Agni further said: "A hamsa (swan) will declare to you another foot."
Satyakama then, when it was the morrow, drove the cows in the direction of the teacher’s house. And when they came together toward evening, he lighted a fire, penned the cows, laid fuel on the fire and sat down behind the fire, facing the east.

2
Then a swan flew to him and said: "Satyakama!"
"Revered Sir!" Satyakama replied.

3
Dear friend, I will declare to you one foot of Brahman."
"Declare it, revered Sir."
The swan said to him: "Fire is one quarter, the sun is one quarter, the moon is one quarter, lightning is one quarter. This, dear friend, is one foot of Brahman, consisting of four quarters and this foot is called Jyotishmat (luminous).

4
He who knows this and meditates on the foot of Brahman consisting of four quarters as luminous, becomes luminous on this earth. He conquers luminous worlds-he who knows this and meditates on the foot of Brahman consisting of four quarters as luminous.

Chapter VIII - Instruction by the Diver-Bird

1
The swan further said: "A madgu (diver-bird) will declare to you another foot."
Satyakama then, when it was the morrow, drove the cows in the direction of the teacher’s house. And when they came together toward evening, he lighted a fire, penned the cows, laid fuel on the fire and sat down behind the fire, facing the east.

2
Then a diver-bird flew to him and said: "Satyakama!"
"Revered Sir!" Satyakama replied.

3
"Dear friend, I will declare to you one foot of Brahman."
"Declare it, revered Sir."
The diver-bird said to him: "The prana is one quarter, the eye is one quarter, the ear is one quarter, the mind is one quarter. This, dear friend, is one foot of Brahman, consisting of four quarters and this foot is called Ayatanavat (having support).

4
"He who knows this and meditates on the foot of Brahman consisting of four quarters as Ayatanavat, possesses a support (i.e. home) on this earth. He conquers the worlds which offer a home-he who knows this and meditates on the foot of Brahman consisting of four quarters as Ayatanavat."

Chapter IX - Instruction by the Teacher

1
Satyakama reached the teacher’s house. The teacher said to him: "Satyakama!"
"Revered Sir!" Satyakama replied.

2
The teacher said: "Dear friend, you shine like one who knows Brahman. Who has taught you?"
"Others than men," he replied. "But I wish, revered Sir, that you alone should teach me."

3
"For I have heard from persons like your good self that only knowledge which is learnt from a teacher (acharya) leads to the highest good."
Then he (Gautama) taught him the same knowledge. Nothing whatsoever was left out, yea, nothing whatsoever was left out.

Chapter X - The Story of Upakosala

1
Upakosala the son of Kamala dwelt as a brahmachirin (religious student) with Satyakama the son of Jabala. He tended his teacher’s fires for twelve years. Satyakama allowed his other pupils to return to their homes after they had finished their Vedic studies but did not allow Upakosala to depart.

2
Then his wife said to him: "This brahmachirin, practising austerities, has intelligently tended your fires. Give him instruction lest the fires should blame you." The teacher, however, went away on a journey without teaching him.

3
The brahmachirin out of mental grief began to fast. Then the teacher’s wife said to him: "Brahmachirin, why do you not eat?"
He said: "There are in a man like me many desires directed to various objects. I am full of sorrows. I will not eat."

4
Thereupon the fires said among themselves: "This brahmachirin, practising austerities, has intelligently tended us. Come, let us teach him."
They said to him: "The prana is Brahman, ka (joy) is Brahman, kha (the akaha) is Brahman."

5
He said: "I understand that the prana is Brahman, but I do not understand ‘joy’ (ka) and ‘the akasa’ (kha)."
They said: "What is joy (ka) is the akasa (kha), what is the akasa (kha) is joy (ka)."
They taught him the prana (i.e. Brahman) and the akasa related to it.

Chapter XI - Instruction by the Household Fire

1
Next the Garhapatya Fire taught him: "The earth, fire, food and the sun are my forms. The person that is seen in the sun-I am he, I am he indeed.

2
"He who, knowing this, meditates on the fire frees himself from sinful actions, obtains the World of the Garhapatya Fire, reaches his full age and lives brightly. His descendants do not perish. We support him in this world and in the other who, knowing this, meditates on the fire."

Chapter XII - Instruction by the Southern Fire

1
Then the Anvaharya (Southern) Fire taught him: "Water, the quarters, the stars and the moon are my forms. The person that is seen in the moon-I am he, I am he indeed.

2
"He who, knowing this, meditates on the fire frees himself from sinful actions, obtains the World of the Anvaharya Fire, reaches his full age and lives brightly. His descendants do not perish. We support him in this world and in the other who, knowing this, meditates on the fire."

Chapter XIII - Instruction by the Ahavaniya Fire

1
Then the Ahavaniya Fire taught him: "The prana, the akaha, heaven and lightning are my forms. The person that is seen in lightning-I am he, I am he indeed.

2
"He who, knowing this, meditates on the fire frees himself from sinful actions, obtains the World of the Anvaharya Fire, reaches his full age and lives brightly. His descendants do not perish. We support him in this world and in the other who, knowing this, meditates on the fire."

Chapter XIV - Dialogue between the Teacher and the Pupil

1
Then they (i.e. all the fires) said: "Upakosala, dear friend, thus we taught you the knowledge of ourselves and the knowledge of the Self. But the teacher will teach you the way."
The teacher returned and said to him: "Upakosala!"

2-3
He replied: "Revered Sir!"
"Dear friend, your face shines like that of one who knows Brahman. Who has taught you?"
"Who should teach me, Sir?"
Here he conceals the fact, as it were.
And he said pointing to the fires: "For this reason they are of this form now, though they were of a different form before."
"Dear friend, what did they teach you?"
"This," Upakosala replied and repeated some of what the fires had told him.
The teacher said: "They told you, dear friend, only about the worlds, but I shall tell you about Brahman. As water does not cling to the lotus leaf, so no evil clings to one who knows this."
Upakosala said to him: "Revered Sir, please tell me."

Chapter XV - Instruction by the Teacher

1
He said: "The person that is seen in the eye-that is the Self. This is the immortal, the fearless; this is Brahman. That is why, if one drops melted butter or water in the eye, it flows away on both sides.

2
"The seers call him Samyadvama, for all blessings (vama) go towards him (samyanti). All blessings go towards him who knows this.

3
"He is also Vamani, for he carries to living beings (nayati) all blessings (vama). He who knows this carries all blessings.

4
"He is also called Bhamani, for he shines (bhati) in all the worlds. He who knows this shines in all the worlds.

5
"Now, whether or not they perform the funeral rites for such a person, he goes to light, from light to day, from day to the bright half of the moon, from the bright half of the moon to the six months during which the sun goes to the north, from those months to the year, from the year to the sun, from the sun to the moon, from the moon to lightning. There a person who is not a human being meets him and leads him to Brahman. This is the Path of the Gods (Devayana), the path leading to Brahman. Those who travel by it do not return to the whirl of humanity, yea, they do not return."

Chapter XVI - The Silence of the Brahma Priest

1
Verily, he who moves along (i.e. the air) is the sacrifice; for he, moving along, purifies everything. And because, moving along, he purifies everything, he is the sacrifice. Of that sacrifice, the mind and speech are the two ways.

2-3
The Brahma priest purifies one of the two (i.e. the mind) by his mind. The other (i.e. speech) is purified through words by the hotri priest, the adhvaryu priest and the udgatri priest.
If the Brahma priest, after the Prataranuvaka hymn has begun and before the recitation of the Paridhaniya hymn, breaks his silence and speaks, he purifies only one of the ways (i.e. speech), but the other (i.e. the mind) is injured. As a man walking on one leg, or a carriage going on one wheel, is injured, likewise the sacrifice is injured. Following the injury to the sacrifice, the sacrificer too is injured. By performing the defective sacrifice he becomes more sinful.

4
But if the Brahma priest, after the Prataranuvaka hymn has begun and before the recitation of the Paridhaniya, does not break his silence and speak, he purifies both the ways and neither of them is injured.
As a man walking on two legs or a carriage going on two wheels goes on without obstacle, likewise the sacrifice goes on without obstacle. Following the success of the sacrifice, the sacrificer too fares well. Having performed the sacrifice he becomes better.

Chapter XVII - Penances for Mistakes in the Sacrifice

1
Prajapati brooded over the worlds; from them, thus brooded over, he squeezed the essences: agni (fire) from the earth, vayu (air) from the mid-region and aditya (the sun) from heaven.

2
He brooded over these three deities; from them, thus brooded over, he squeezed the essences. The Rik-verses from fire, the Yajus-verses from the air and the Saman-verses from the sun.

3
He brooded over the threefold knowledge (i.e. the three Vedas); from them, thus brooded over, he squeezed the essences: Bhuh from the Rik-verses, Bhuvah from the Yajus-verses and Svah from the Saman-verses.

4
If the sacrifice is injured with regard to the Rik-verses, one should then offer a libation in the Garhapatya Fire saying: "Bhuh Svaha!" Thus is healed the injury with regard to the Rik-verses by means of the essence and the power of the Rik-verses themselves.

5
If the sacrifice is injured with regard to the Yajus-verses, one should then offer a libation in the Southern (Dakshina) Fire, saying: "Bhuvah Svaha !" Thus is healed the injury with regard to the Yajus-verses by means of the essence and the power of the Yajus-verses themselves.

6
If the sacrifice is injured with regard to the Saman-verses, one should then offer a libation in the Ahavaniya Fire, saying: "Svah Svaha!" Thus is healed the injury with regard to the Saman-verses by means of the essence and the power of the Saman-verses themselves.

7-8
As one binds gold by means of borax and silver by means of gold and tin by means of silver and lead by means of tin and iron by means of lead and wood by means of iron or leather,
Likewise one heals any injury done to the sacrifice with the power of these worlds, these gods and these three Vedas. That sacrifice is well healed in which there is a Brahma priest who knows this.

9-10
That sacrifice is inclined to the north in which there is a Brahma priest who knows this. And with regard to such a Brahma priest, there is the following gatha: "Wherever it is injured, thither he (the Brahma priest) goes."
The silent Brahma alone, as one or the priests, protects the sacrificer, as a mare protects a warrior. Because the Brahma priest who knows this protects the sacrifice, the sacrificer and all the priests, one should therefore make a person who knows this the Brahma priest and not one who knows it not, yea, not one who knows it not.

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-- Part 4 --





 
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