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1. When he shows his respect to Gurus or aged persons or guests, when he offers a burnt-oblation (or other sacrifice), when he murmurs prayers at dinner, when sipping water and during the (daily) recitation of the Veda, his garment (or his sacrificial thread) shall pass over his left shoulder and under his right arm. 1

2. By sipping (pure) water, that has been collected on the ground, he becomes pure. 2

3. Or he, whom a pure person causes to sip water, (becomes also pure). 3

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4. He shall not sip rain-drops. 4

5. (He shall not sip water) from a (natural) cleft in the ground.

6. He shall not sip water heated (at the fire) except for a particular reason (as sickness). 6

7. He who raises his empty hands (in order to scare) birds, (becomes impure and) shall wash (his hands). 7

8. If he can (find water to sip) he shall not remain impure (even) for a muhûrta.

9. Nor (shall he remain) naked (for a muhûrta if he can help it).

10. Purification (by sipping water) shall not take place whilst he is (standing) in the water.

11. Also, when he has crossed a river, he shall purify himself by sipping water. 11

12. He shall not place fuel on the fire, without having sprinkled it (with water). 12

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13. (If he is seated in company with) other unclean persons on a seat consisting of a confused heap of straw, and does not touch them, he may consider himself pure.

14. (The same rule applies, if he is seated) on grass or wood fixed in the ground. 14

15. He shall put on a dress, (even if it is clean,) only after having sprinkled it with water. 15

16. If he has been touched by a dog, he shall bathe, with his clothes on;

17. Or he becomes pure, after having washed that part (of his body) and having touched it with fire and again washed it, as well as his feet, and having sipped water. 17

18. Unpurified, he shall not approach fire, (so near that he can feel the heat). 18

19. Some declare, that (he shall not approach nearer) than the length of an arrow.

20. Nor shall he blow on fire with his breath. 20

21. Nor shall he place fire under his bedstead. 21

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22. It is lawful for a Brâhmana to dwell in a village, where there is plenty of fuel and water, (and) where he may perform the rites of purification by himself. 22

23. When he has washed away the stains of urine and fæces after voiding urine or fæces, the stains of food (after dinner), the stains of the food eaten the day before (from his vessels), and the stains of semen, and has also washed his feet and afterwards has sipped water, he becomes pure. 23


54:1 15. Taitt. Âr. II, 1, 2 seq.; Manu IV, 58.

54:2 Pure water is that which a cow will drink. Yâgñ. I, 192; Manu V, 128.

54:3 The ceremony of 'sipping water' may be performed in two ways; either the 'person sipping' may take the water out of a river, pond, &c., or he may get the water poured into his hand by another person. But, according to Âpastamba, he must not take a pot or gourd in his left hand and pour the water into his right, as some Smritis allow. The reason for this rule is, that Âpastamba considers it essential that both hands should be used in conveying the water to the mouth; see also above, I, 1, 4, 21. This agrees with the custom now followed, which is to bend the right hand into the form of a cow's ear, and to touch the right wrist with the left hand while drinking.

55:4 'Some think, that this Sûtra is intended to forbid also the drinking of rain-water. Other commentators declare that, according to this Sûtra, it is allowed to use for "sipping" drops of water which fall from a vessel suspended by ropes [because the Sûtra emphatically excludes "rain-drops only].'--Haradatta.

55:6 Manu II, 61. 'Because the term "heated by fire" is used, there is no objection to water heated by the rays of the sun. In the same manner the use of, "hot" water only is usually forbidden in the Smritis.'-- Haradatta.

55:7 'Because the phrase "with empty hands" is used, he commits no fault if he raises his hand, holding a stick or a clod. Some declare, that the term "touching water" (rendered by "washing means "sipping water."'--Haradatta.

55:11 The translation given above is based on the interpretation of Haradatta, who considers that Âpastamba holds 'crossing a river' to cause impurity. The natural and probably the right interpretation, however, is that rejected by Haradatta, 'But he shall sip water after having come out (of the river or tank).'

55:12 '"On the fire used for Vedic or Smârta sacrifices or for household purposes.". . . Some declare, that (the fuel need not be sprinkled with water) if used for the kitchen fire.'--Haradatta.

56:14 Haradatta's commentary is of little use, and I am not quite certain that my translation is correct.

56:15 Manu V, 118.

56:17 This second proceeding is adopted in case the dog has touched the hands or the lower parts of the body, as may be learnt by the comparison of a verse of Manu.

56:18 Manu IV, 142; Yâgñ. I, 155.

56:20 Manu IV, 53. Haradatta mentions other explanations of this Sûtra. Some say, that the Srauta fire may be kindled by blowing, because that is ordained particularly in the Vâgasaneyaka, but that the domestic fire is not to be treated so. Others again consider the rule absolute, and say, that a hollow reed or bellows must be used for kindling the fire, lest drops of saliva should fall upon it.

56:21 Manu IV, 54.

57:22 The last condition mentioned in the Sûtra indicates, that the place must have a river or tank, not wells only, as the purification by sipping water cannot be performed without help, with water from wells.

57:23 Manu V, 138.

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