Aitareya-Aranyaka: Second Aranyaka, First Adhyâya, Eighth Khanda

Updated May 14, 2020 | Infoplease Staff

Eighth Khanda

1. Was it water really? Was it water? Yes, all this was water indeed. This (water) was the root (cause), that (the world) was the shoot (effect). He (the person) is the father, they (earth, fire, &c.) are the sons. Whatever there is belonging to the son, belongs to the father; whatever there is belonging to the father, belongs to the son. This was intended.

2. Mahidasa Aitareya, who knew this, said: “I know myself (reaching) as far as the gods, and I know the gods (reaching) as far as me. For these gods receive their gifts from hence, and are supported from hence.

3. This is the mountain, viz. eye, ear, mind, speech, and breath. They call it the mountain of Brahman.

4. He who knows this, throws down the evil enemy who hates him; the evil enemy who hates him is defeated.

5. He (the Prâna, identified with Brahman) is the life, the breath; he is being (while the givatman remains), and not-being (when the givatman departs).

6. The Devas (speech, &c.) worshipped him (prâna) as Bhuti or being, and thus they became great beings. And therefore even now a man who sleeps, breathes like bhurbhuh.

7. The Asuras worshipped him as Abhuti or not-being, and thus they were defeated.

8. He who knows this, becomes great by himself, while the evil enemy who hates him, is defeated.

9. He (the breath) is death (when he departs), and immortality (while he abides).

10. And this has been said by a Rishi (Rv. I, 164, 38):

11. “Downwards and upwards he (the wind of the breath) goes, held by food;”—for this up-breathing, being held back by the down-breathing, does not move forward (and leave the body altogether).

12. “The immortal dwells with the mortal;”—for through him (the breath) all this dwells together, the bodies being clearly mortal, but this being (the breath), being immortal.

13. “These two (body and breath) go for ever in different directions (the breath moving the senses of the body, the body supporting the senses of the breath: the former going upwards to another world, the body dying and remaining on earth). They increase the one (the body), but they do not increase the other,” i.e. they increase these bodies (by food), but this being (breath) is immortal.

14. He who knows this becomes immortal in that world (having become united with Hiranyagarbha), and is seen as immortal (in the sun) by all beings, yea, by all beings.

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