51. Some, on account of the existence of a Self within a body.
In all meditations on the highest Self the nature of the meditating subject has to be ascertained no less than the nature of the object of meditation and of the mode of meditation. The question then arises whether the meditating Self is to be viewed as the knowing, doing, and enjoying Self, subject to transmigration; or as that Self which Pragâpati describes (Kh. Up. VIII, 1), viz. a Self
free from all sin and imperfection.--Some hold the former view, on the ground that the meditating Self is within a body. For as long as the Self dwells within a body, it is a knower, doer, enjoyer, and so on, and it can bring about the result of its meditation only as viewed under that aspect. A person who, desirous of the heavenly world or a similar result, enters on some sacrificial action may, after he has reached that result, possess characteristics different from those of a knowing, doing, and enjoying subject, but those characteristics cannot be attributed to him as long as he is in the state of having to bring about the means of accomplishing those ends; in the latter state he must be viewed as an ordinary agent, and there it would be of no use to view him as something different. And the same holds equally good with regard to a person engaged in meditation.--But, an objection is raised, the text 'as the thought of a man is in this world, so he will be when he has departed this life' (Kh. Up. III, 14, 1) does declare a difference (between the agent engaged in sacrificial action, and the meditating subject), and from this it follows that the meditating Self is to be conceived as having a nature free from all evil, and so on.--Not so, the Pûrvapakshin replies; for the clause, 'howsoever they meditate on him,' proves that that text refers to the equality of the object meditated upon (not of the meditating subject).--To this the next Sûtra replies.