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The Upanishads, Part 2 (SBE15), by Max Müller, [1879], at

p. 238


1. Savitri (the sun), having first collected his mind and expanded his thoughts, brought Agni (fire), when he had discovered his light, above the earth.

2. With collected minds we are at the command of the divine Savitri, that we may obtain blessedness.

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1. May Savitri, after he has reached with his mind the gods as they rise up to the sky, and with his thoughts (has reached) heaven, grant these gods to make a great light to shine.

2. The wise sages of the great sage collect their mind and collect their thoughts. He who alone knows the law (Savitri) has ordered the invocations; great is the praise of the divine Savitri.

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1. Your old prayer has to be joined 2 with praises. Let my song go forth like the path of the sun! May all the sons of the Immortal listen, they who have reached their heavenly homes.

6. Where the fire is rubbed 3, where the wind is checked, where the Soma flows over, there the mind is born.

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7. Let us love the old Brahman by the grace of Savitri; if thou make thy dwelling there, the path will not hurt thee 1.

8. If a wise man hold his body with its three erect parts (chest, neck, and head) even 2, and turn his senses with the mind towards the heart, he will then in the boat of Brahman 3 cross all the torrents which cause fear.

9. Compressing his breathings let him, who has subdued all motions, breathe forth through the nose with gentle breath 4. Let the wise man without fail restrain his mind, that chariot yoked with vicious horses 5.

10. Let him perform his exercises in a place 6

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level, pure, free from pebbles, fire, and dust, delightful by its sounds, its water, and bowers, not painful to the eye, and full of shelters and caves.

11. When Yoga is being performed, the forms which come first, producing apparitions in Brahman, are those of misty smoke, sun, fire, wind, fire-flies, lightnings, and a crystal moon 1.

12. When, as earth, water, light, heat, and ether arise, the fivefold quality of Yoga takes place 2, then there is no longer illness, old age, or pain 3 for him who has obtained a body, produced by the fire of Yoga.

13. The first results of Yoga they call lightness, healthiness, steadiness, a good complexion, an easy pronunciation, a sweet odour, and slight excretions.

14. As a metal disk (mirror), tarnished by dust, shines bright again after it has been cleaned, so is the one incarnate person satisfied and free from grief, after he has seen the real nature of the Self 4.

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15. And when by means of the real nature of his self he sees, as by a lamp, the real nature of Brahman, then having known the unborn, eternal god, who is beyond all natures 1, he is freed from all fetters.

16. He indeed is the god who pervades all regions: he is the first-born (as Hiranyagarbha), and he is in the womb. He has been born, and he will be born 2. He stands behind all persons, looking everywhere.

17. The god 3 who is in the fire, the god who is in the water, the god who has entered into the whole world, the god who is in plants, the god who is in trees, adoration be to that god, adoration!


238:1 The seven introductory verses are taken from hymns addressed to Savitri as the rising sun. They have been so twisted by Saṅkara, in order to make them applicable to the teachings of the Yoga philosophy, as to become almost nonsensical. I have given a few specimens of Saṅkara's renderings in the notes, but have translated the verses, as much as possible, in their original character. As they are merely introductory, I do not understand why the collector of the Upanishad should have seen in them anything but an invocation of Savitri.

These verses are taken from various Samhitâs. The first yuñgânah prathamam is from Taitt. Samh. IV, 1, 1, 1, 1; Vâg. Samh. XI, 1; see also Sat. Br. VI, 3, 1, 12. The Taittirîya-text agrees with the Upanishad, the Vâgasaneyi-text has dhiyam for dhiyah, and agneh for agnim. Both texts take tatvâya as a participle of tan, while the Upanishad reads tattvâya, as a dative of tattva, truth. I have translated the verse in its natural sense. Saṅkara, in explaining the Upanishad, translates: 'At the beginning of our meditation, joining the mind with the Highest Self, also the other prânas, or the knowledge of outward things, for the sake of truth, Savitri, out of the knowledge of outward things, brought Agni, after having discovered his brightness, above the earth, in this body.' He explains it: 'May Savitri, taking our thoughts away from outward things, in order to concentrate them on the Highest Self, produce in our speech and in our other senses that power which can lighten all objects, which proceeds from Agni and from the other favourable deities.' He adds that 'by the favour of Savitri, Yoga may be obtained.'

238:2 The second verse is from Taitt. Samh. IV, 1, 1, 1, 3; Vâg. Samh. XI, 2. The Vâgasaneyi-text has svargyâya for svargeyâya, and saktyâ for saktyai. Saṅkara explains: 'With a mind that has been joined p. 239 by Savitri to the Highest Self, we, with the sanction of that Savitri, devote ourselves to the work of meditation, which leads to the obtainment of Svarga, according to our power.' He explains Svarga by Paramâtman. Sâyana in his commentary on the Taittirîya-samhitâ explains svargeyâya by svargaloke gîyamânasyâgneh sampâdanâya; Saṅkara, by svargaprâptihetubhûtâya dhyânakarmane. Saktyai is explained by Saṅkara by yathâsâmarthyam; by Sâyana, by saktâ bhûyâsma. Mahîdhara explains saktyâ by svasâmarthyena. I believe that the original reading was svargyâya saktyai, and that we must take saktyai as an infinitive, like ityai, construed with a dative, like drisaye sûryâya, for the seeing of the sun. The two attracted datives would be governed by save, 'we are under the command of Savitri,' svargyâya saktyai, 'that we may obtain svargya, life in Svarga or blessedness.'

239:1 The third verse is from Taitt. Samh. IV, 1, 1, 1, 2; Vâg. Samh. XI, 3. The Taittirîyas read yuktvâya manasâ; the Vâgasaneyins, yuktvâya savitâ. Saṅkara translates: 'Again he prays that Savitri, having directed the devas, i.e. the senses, which are moving towards Brahman, and which by knowledge are going to brighten up the heavenly light of Brahman, may order them to do so; that is, he prays that, by the favour of Savitri, our senses should be turned away from outward things to Brahman or the Self.' Taking the hymn as addressed to Savitri, I have translated deva by gods, not by senses, suvaryatah by rising to the sky, namely, in the morning. The opposition between manasâ and dhiyâ is the same here as in verse 1, and again in verse 4.

239:2 This verse is from Taitt. Samh. IV, 1, 1, 1, 4; I, 2, 13, 1, 1; Vâg. Samh. V, 14; XI, 4; XXXVII, 2; Rig-veda V, 81, 1; Sat. Br. III, 5, 3, 11; VI, 3, 1, 16. Saṅkara explains this verse again in the same manner as he did the former verses, while the Satapatha-brâhmana supplies two different ritual explanations.

240:1 For this verse, see Taitt. Samh. IV, 1, 1, 2, 1; Vâg. Samh. XI, 5; Atharva-veda XVIII, 3, 39; Rig-veda X, 13, 1. The Vâgasaneyins read vi sloka etu for vi slokâ yanti; sûreh for sûrâh; srinvantu for srinvanti; and the Rig-veda agrees with them. The dual vâm is accounted for by the verse belonging to a hymn celebrating the two sakatas, carts, bearing the offerings (havirdhâne); most likely, however, the dual referred originally to the dual deities of heaven and earth. I prefer the text of the Rig-veda and the Vâgasaneyins to that of the Taittirîyas, and have translated the verse accordingly. In the Atharva-veda XVIII, 39, if we may trust the edition, the verse begins with svâsasthe bhavatam indave nah, which is really the end of the next verse (Rv. X, 13, 2), while the second line is, vi sloka eti pathyeva sûrih srinvantu visve amritâsa etat. I see no sense in pathyeva sûrâh. Saṅkara explains pathyeva by pathi sanmârge, athavâ pathyâ kîrtih, while his later commentary, giving srinvantu and putrâh sûrâtmano hiranyagarbhasya, leads one to suppose that he read sûreh srinvantu. Sâyana (Taitt. Samh. IV, 1, 1, 2) explains pathyâ sûrâ iva by gîrvânamârga antarikshe sûryarasmayo yathâ prasaranti tadvat. The same, when commenting on the Rig-veda (X, 13, 1), Says: pathyâ-iva sûreh, yathâ stotuh svabhûtâ pathyâ parinâmasukhâvahâhutir visvân devân prati vividham gakkhati tadvat. Mahîdhara (Vâg. Samh. XI, 5) refers sûreh (panditasya) to slokah, and explains pathyeva by patho 'napetâ pathyâ yagñamârgapravrittâhutih.

240:2 Yugé cannot stand for yuñge, as all commentators and translators suppose, but is a datival infinitive. Neither can yuñgate in the following verse stand for yuṅkte (see Boehtlingk, s. v.), or be explained as a subjunctive form. A. reads adhirudhyate, B. abhirudhyate, with a marginal note abhinudyate. It is difficult to say whether in lighting the fire the wind should be directed towards it, or kept from it.

240:3 That is, at the Soma sacrifice, after the fire has been kindled and stirred by the wind, the poets, on partaking of the juice, are p. 241 inspirited for new songs. Saṅkara, however, suggests another explanation as more appropriate for the Upanishad, namely, 'Where the fire, i.e. the Highest Self, which burns all ignorance, has been kindled (in the body, where it has been rubbed with the syllable Om), and where the breath has acted, i.e. has made the sound peculiar to the initial stages of Yoga, there Brahman is produced.' In fact, what was intended to be taught was this, that we must begin with sacrificial acts, then practise yoga, then reach samâdhi, perfect knowledge, and lastly bliss.

241:1 We must read krinavase, in the sense of 'do this and nothing will hurt thee,' or, if thou do this, thy former deeds will no longer hurt thee.

241:2 Cf. Bhagavadgîtâ VI, 13. Samam kâyasirogrîvam dhârayan. Saṅkara says: trîny unnatâny urogrîvasirâmsy unnatâni yasmin sarire.

241:3 Explained by Saṅkara as the syllable Om.

241:4 Cf. Bhagavadgîtâ V, 27. Prânâpânau samau kritvâ nâsâbhyantara kârinau. See Telang's notes, Sacred Books of the East, vol. viii, p. 68 seq.

241:5 A similar metaphor in Kath. Up. III, 4-6; Sacred Books of the East, vol. xv, p. 13.

241:6 The question is whether sabdagalâsrayâdibhih should be referred to mano 'nukûle, as I have translated it, or to vivargite, as Saṅkara seems to take it, because he renders sabda, sound, by noise, and p. 242 âsraya by mandapa, a booth. See Bhagavadgîtâ VI, 11. In the Maitr. Up. VI, 30, Râmatîrtha explains sukau dese by girinadîpulinaguhâdisuddhastâne. See also Âsv. Grihya-sûtras III, 2, 2.

242:1 Or, it may be, a crystal and the moon.

242:2 The Yogaguna is described as the quality of each element, i.e. smell of the earth, taste of water, &c. It seems that the perception of these gunas is called yogapravritti. Thus by fixing the thought on the tip of the nose, a perception of heavenly scent is produced; by fixing it on the tip of the tongue, a perception of heavenly taste; by fixing it on the point of the palate, a heavenly colour; by fixing it on the middle of the tongue, a heavenly touch; by fixing it on the roof of the tongue, a heavenly sound. By means of these perceptions the mind is supposed to be steadied, because it is no longer attracted by the outward objects themselves. See Yoga-sûtras I, 35.

242:3 Or no death, na mrityuh, B.

242:4 Pareshâm pâthe tadvat sa tattvam prasamîkshya dehîti.

243:1 Sarvatattvair avidyâtatkâryair visuddham asamsprishtam.

243:2 This verse is found in the Vâg. Samh. XXXII, 4; Taitt. Âr. X, 1, 3, with slight modifications. The Vâgasaneyins read esho ha (so do A. B.) for esha hi; sa eva gâtah (A. B.) for sa vigâtah; ganâs (A. B.) for ganâms. The Âranyaka has sa vigâyamânah for sa vigâtah, pratyaṅmukhâs for pratyañganâms, and visvatomukhah for sarvatomukhah. Colebrooke (Essays, I, 57) gives a translation of it. If we read ganâh, we must take it as a vocative.

243:3 B. (not A.) reads yo rudro yo 'gnau.

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