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Hymns of the Atharva Veda, by Ralph T.H. Griffith, [1895], at

p. a350


A glorification of the mystical abstraction Virāj

1Viraj at first was This. At birth all feared her; the thought, She
   will become this All, struck terror.
2She rose, the Gārhapatya fire she entered. He who knows this
   becomes lord of a household, performer of domestic sacri-
3She mounted up, the Eastward fire she entered. He who knows
   this becomes the Gods' beloved, and to his call they come
   when she invokes them.
4She mounted up, the Southward fire she entered.
  He who knows this becomes a fit performer of sacrifice, meet
   for honour, shelter-giver.
5She mounted up, she entered the Assembly. He who knows this
   becomes polite and courtly, and people come as guests to his
6She mounted up, she passed within the meeting. He who knows
   this becomes fit for the meeting, and to his hall of meeting
   come the people. p. a351
7She mounted up, she entered Consultation. Whoso knows this
   is fit to be consulted, and to his consultation come the
8She mounted up, and, into four divided, she took her station in
   the air's mid-region.
9Of her the Gods and men said, This she knoweth. That we may
   both have life let us invoke her.
10Thus did they cry to her:
11Come, Strength! come, Food! come, Charmer! come, Free-
12Her calf, her well-beloved calf, was Indra: Gāyatri was her
   rope, the cloud her udder.
13Two teats she had, Rathantara and Brihat, two, Yajnāyajniya
   and Vāmadevya.
14With the Rathantara the Gods milked from her the Plants, and
   all the wide expanse with Brihat.
15They drew the Waters forth with Vāmadevya, with Yajnayaj-
   niya they milked out worship.
16For him who knoweth this, Rathantara poureth out Plants,
   and Brihat yieldeth wide expansion.
17Waters from Vāmdevya come, from Yajnāyajniya sacrifice.
18She rose, she came unto the tress: they killed her. A year went
   by and she again existed.
  Hence in a year the wounds of trees heal over. He who knows
   this sees his loathed rival wounded.
19She mounted up, she came unto the Fathers: they killed her:
   in a month she re-existed.
  Hence men give monthly offerings to the Fathers: who knows
   this, knows the path which they have trodden.
20She rose, she came unto the Gods: they killed her: but in a
   fortnight she again was living.
  Fortnightly, hence, men serve the Gods with Vasat! Who
   knows this knows the way which Gods pass over.
21She mounted up, she came to men: they killed her Presently
   she regained her life and being.
  Hence on both days to men they bring and offer—who knows
   this—near-seated in the dwelling.
22She rose, approached the Asuras: they called her: their cry was,
  Come, O Māyā, come thou hither. p. a352
  Her dear calf was Virochana Prāhrādi: her milking vessel was a.
   pan of iron.
  Dvimūrdhā Ārtvya milked her, yea, this Māyā, The Asuras
   depend for life on Māyā. He who knows this becomes a fit
23She mounted up, she came unto the Fathers. The Fathers called.
   to her, O Food, come hither.
  King Yama was her calf, her pail was silvern. Antaka, Mrityu's.
   son, milked her, this Svadhā.
  This Food the Fathers make their lives' sustainer. He who•
   knows this becomes a meet supporter.
24She mounted up, she came to men. They called her, Come unto-
   us, come hither thou Free-giver!
  Earth was her milking-pail, the calf beside her Manu Vaivasvata,
  Vivasvān's offspring.
  Prithi the son of Vena was her milker: he milked forth hus-
   bandry and grain for sowing.
  These men depend for life on corn and tillage. He who knows
   this becomes a meet supporter, successful in the culture of his_
25She rose, she came unto the Seven Rishis. They called her,.
  Come, Rich in Devotion! hither.
  King Soma was her calf. the Moon her milk-pail. Brihaspati.
  Āngirasa, her milker,
  Drew from her udder Prayer and Holy Fervour. Fervour and
  Prayer maintain the Seven Rishis.
  He who knows this becomes a meet supporter, a priest illustri-
   ous for his sacred knowledge.
26She rose, she came unto the Gods. They called her, crying, O
  Vigour, come to us, come hither!
  God Savitar milked her, he milked forth Vigour. The Gods
   depend for life upon that Vigour. He who knows this becomes
   a meet supporter.
27She rose approached the Apsarases and Gandharvas. They called
   her, Come to us, O Fragrant-scented!
  The son of Sūryavarchas, Chitraratha, was her dear calf, her pail.
   a lotus-petal.
  The son of Sūryavarchas, Vasuruchi, milked and drew from her
   most delightful fragrance.
  That scent supports Apsarases and Gandharvas. He who knows p. a353
   this becomes a meet supporter, and round him ever breathes
   delicious odour.
28She mounted up, she came to Other People. They called her,
   crying, Come, Concealment! hither.
  Her dear calf was Vaisravana Kubera, a vessel never tempered
   was her milk-pail.
  Rajatanābhi, offspring of Kubera, milked her, and from her
   udder drew concealment.
  By that concealment live the Other People. He who knows this
   becomes a meet supporter, and makes all evil disappear and
29She mounted up, she came unto the Serpents. The Serpents
   called her, Venomous! come hither.
  Her calf was Takshaka, Visāla's offspring: a bottlegourd suppli-
   ed a milking-vessel.
  Irāvān's offspring, Dhritarāshtra milked her, and from her udder
   drew forth only poison.
  That poison quickens and supports the Serpents: He who knows
   this becomes a meet supporter.
30One would ward off, for him who hath this knowledge, if with a
   bottle-gourd he sprinkled water.
31And did he not repel, if in his spirit he said, I drive thee back,
   he would repel it.
32The poison that it drives away, that poison verily repels.
33The man who hath this knowledge pours its venom on his hated

p. a354 p. a355

Next: Hymn 1: A glorification of the Asvins' whip and a prayer for blessings