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

Updated May 14, 2020 | Infoplease Staff

Second Khanda

1. He who desires proper food should use the hymn, agnim naro didhitibhih (Rv. VII, 1, 1).

2. Verily, Agni (fire) is the eater of food.

In the other (recitations accompanying the) offerings of Agya (where Agni is likewise mentioned) the worshippers come more slowly near to Agni (because the name of Agni does not stand at the beginning of the hymn). But here a worshipper obtains proper food at once, he strikes down evil at once.

3. Through the words (occurring in the second foot of the first verse), hastakyuti ganayanta, “they caused the birth of Agni by moving their arms,” the hymn becomes endowed with (the word) birth. Verily, the sacrificer is born from this day of the sacrifice, and therefore the hymn is endowed with (the word) birth.

4. There are four metrical feet (in the Trishtubh verses of this hymn). Verily, cattle have four feet, therefore they serve for the gaining of cattle.

5. There are three metrical feet (in the Virâg verses of this hymn). Verily, three are these three-fold worlds. Therefore they serve for the conquest of the worlds.

6. These (the Trishtubh and Virâg verses of the hymn) form two metres, which form a support (pratishihi). Verily, man is supported by two (feet), cattle by four feet. Therefore this hymn places the sacrificer who stands on two feet among cattle which stand on four.

7. By saying them straight on there are twenty-five verses in this hymn. Man also consists of twenty-five. There are ten fingers on his hands, ten toes on his feet, two legs, two arms, and the trunk (Atman) the twenty-fifth. He adorns that trunk, the twenty-fifth, by this hymn.

8. And then this day (of the sacrifice) consists of twenty-five, and the Stoma hymn of that day consists of twenty-five (verses); it becomes the same through the same. Therefore these two, the day and the hymn, are twenty-five.

9. These twenty-five verses, by repeating the first thrice and the last thrice, become thirty less one. This is a Virâg verse (consisting of thirty syllables), too small by one. Into the small (heart) the vital spirits are placed, into the small stomach food is placed 3, therefore this Virâg, small by one, serves for the obtainment of those desires.

10. He who knows this, obtains those desires.

11. The verses (contained in the hymn agnim naro didhitibhih) become the Brihatî metre and the Virâg metre, (they become) the perfection which belongs to that day (the mahâvrata). Then they also become Anushtubh, for the offerings of agya (ghee) dwell in Anushtubhs.

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