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

p. 5


Purusha, Primeval Man or humanity personified

1Who framed the heels of Pūrusha? Who fashioned the flesh of
   him? Who formed and fixed his ankles?
  Who made the openings and well-moulded fingers? Who gave
   him foot-soles and a central station?
2Whence did they make the ankles that are under, and the knee-
   bones of Pūrusha above them?
  What led them onward to the legs' construction? Who planned
   and formed the knees' articulations?
3A fourfold frame is fixt with ends connected, and up above the
   knees a yielding belly.
  The hips and thighs, who was their generator, those props where-
   by the trunk grew firmly stablished?
43Who and how many were those Gods who fastened the chest of
  Pūrusha and neck together?
  How many fixed his breasts? Who formed his elbows? How
   many joined together ribs and shoulders?
5Who put together both his arms and said, Let him show manly
  Who and what God was he who set the shoulderblades upon
   the trunk?
6Who pierced the seven openings in the head? Who made these
   ears, these nostrils, eyes, and mouth,
  Through whose surpassing might in all directions bipeds and
   quadrupeds have power of motion?
7He set within the jaws the tongue that reaches far, and thereon
   placed Speech the mighty Goddess.
  He wanders to and fro mid living creatures, robed in the waters.
  Who hath understood it?
8Who was he, first, of all the Gods who fashioned his skull and
   brain and occiput and forehead,
  The pile that Pūrusha's two jaws supported? Who was that
  God who mounted up to heaven?
9Whence bringeth mighty Pūrusha both pleasant and unpleasant
  Of varied sort, sleep, and alarm, fatigue, enjoyments and de-
10Whence is there found in Pūrusha want, evil, suffering, dis-
   tress? p. 6
  Whence come success, prosperity opulence, thought, and utte-
11Who stored in him floods turned in all directions, moving diverse
   and formed to flow in rivers,
  Hasty, red, copper-hued, and purple, running all ways in
  Purusha, upward and downward?
12Who gave him visible form and shape? Who gave him magni-
   tude and name?
  Who gave him motion, consciousness? Who furnished Pūrusha
   with feet?
13Who wove the vital air in him, who filled him with the down-
   ward breath?
  What God bestowed on Pūrusha the general pervading air?
14What God, what only Deity placed sacrifice in Pūrusha?
  Who gave him truth and falsehood? Whence came Death and
15Who wrapped a garment round him? Who arranged the life he
   hath to live?
  Who granted him the boon of speech? Who gave this fleetness
   to his feet?
16Through whom did he spread waters out, through whom did he
   make Day to shine?
  Through whom did he enkindle Dawn and give the gift of even-
17Who set the seed in him and said, Still be the thread of life spun
  Who gave him intellect besides? Who gave him voice and
   gestic power?
18Through whom did he bedeck the earth, through whom did he
   encompass heaven?
  Whose might made Pūrusha surpass the mountains and created
19Through whom seeks he Parjanya out, and Soma of the piercing
  Through whom belief and sacrifice? Through whom was spirit
   laid in him?
20What leads him to the learned priest? What leads him to this
  Lord Supreme?
  How doth he gain this Agni? By whom hath he measured out
   the year? p. 7
21He, Brahma gains the learned priest, he Brahma, gains this Lord
  As Brahma, Man wins Agni here Brahma hath measured out the
22Through whom doth he abide with Gods? Through whom with
   the Celestial Tribes?
  Why is this other called a star? Why is this called the Real
23Brahma inhabits with the Gods, Brahma among the Heavenly
  Brahma this other star is called. Brahma is called the Real
24By whom was this our earth disposed? By whom was heaven
   placed over it?
  By whom was this expanse of air raised up on high and stre-
   tched across?
25By Brahma was this earth disposed: Brahma is sky arranged
  Brahma is this expanse of air lifted on high and stretched
26Together, with his needle hath Atharvan sewn his head and
  And Pavamāna hovered from his head on high above his brain.
27That is indeed Atharvan's head, the well-closed casket of the
  Spirit and Food and Vital Air protect that head from injury.
28Stationed on high, Purusha hath pervaded all regions spread
   aloft and stretched transversely.
  He who knows Brahma's cattle, yea, the fort whence Purusha is
29Yea, knows that fort of Brahma girt about with immortality,
  Brahma and Brāhmas have bestowed sight, progeny, and life on
30Sight leaves him not, breath quits not him before life's natural
  Who knows the fort of Brahma, yea, the fort whence Purusha
   is named.
31The fort of Gods, impregnable, with circles eight and portals
   nine, p. 8
  Contains a golden treasure-chest, celestial, begirt with light.
32Men deep in lore of Brahma know that Animated Being which
  Dwells in the golden treasure-chest that hath three spokes and
   three supports.
33Brahma hath passed within the fort, the golden castle; ne'er
  Bright with excessive brilliancy, compassed with glory round

Next: Hymn 3: A charm to secure long life, health, prosperity and fame