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Satapatha Brahmana Part III (SBE41), Julius Eggeling tr. [1894], at



6:1:2:11. That Pragâpati desired, 'May it multiply, may it be reproduced!' By means (or, in the form) of Agni he entered into union with the Earth: thence an egg arose. He touched it: 'May it grow! May it grow and multiply!' he said.

6:1:2:22. And the embryo which was inside was created as Vâyu (the wind). And the tear which had formed itself became those birds. And the juice which was adhering to the shell became those sun-motes. And that which was the shell became the air.

6:1:2:33. He desired, 'May it multiply, may it reproduce itself!' By means of Vâyu he entered into union with the Air: thence an egg arose. He touched it, saying, 'Bear thou glory!' From it yonder sun was created, for he indeed is glorious. And the tear which (asru) formed itself became that variegated pebble (asman); for 'asru' indeed is what

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they mystically call 'asman,' for the gods love the mystic. And the juice which was adhering to the shell became those sunbeams. And that which was the shell became the sky.

6:1:2:44. He desired, 'May it multiply, may it reproduce itself!' By means of the Sun he entered into union with the Sky: thence an egg arose. He touched it, saying, 'Bear thou seed!' From it the moon was created, for he (the moon) is seed. And the tear which formed itself became those stars. And the juice which was adhering to the shell became those intermediate quarters; and that which was the shell became those (chief) quarters (points of the compass).

6:1:2:55. Having created these worlds, he desired, 'May I create such creatures as shall be mine in these worlds!'

6:1:2:66. By his Mind (manas) he entered into union with Speech (vâk): he became pregnant with eight drops. They were created as those eight Vasus 1: he placed them on this (earth).

6:1:2:77. By his Mind he entered into union with Speech: he became pregnant with eleven drops. They were created as those eleven Rudras 2: he placed them in the air.

6:1:2:88. By his Mind he entered into union with Speech: he became pregnant with twelve drops. They were created as the twelve Âdityas 3: he placed them in the sky.

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6:1:2:99. By his Mind he entered into union with Speech: he became pregnant. He created the All-gods: he placed them in the quarters.

6:1:2:1010. And so they say, 'After Agni having been created, the Vasus were created: he placed them on this (earth);--after Vâyu, the Rudras: (he placed) them in the air;--after the sun, the Âdityas: (he placed) them in the sky;--after the moon, the All-gods 1: he placed them in the quarters.'

6:1:2:1111. And so they say, 'Pragâpati, having created these worlds, was firmly established on the earth. For him these plants were ripened 2 into food: that he ate. He became pregnant. From the upper vital airs he created the gods, and from the lower vital airs the mortal creatures.' In whatever way he created thereafter, so he created; but indeed it was Pragâpati who created everything here, whatsoever exists.

6:1:2:1212. Having created creatures he, having run the whole race, became relaxed 3; and therefore even now he who runs the whole race becomes indeed

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relaxed. From him being thus relaxed, the vital air went out from within. When it had gone out of him the gods left him.

6:1:2:1313. He said to Agni, 'Restore me!'--'What will then accrue to me?' said he.--'They shall call me after thee; for whichever of the sons succeeds (in life), after him they call the father, grandfather, son, and grandson: they shall call me after thee,--restore me, then!'--'So be it!' so (saying) Agni restored him: therefore, while being Pragâpati, they call him Agni; and verily, whosoever knows this, after him they call his father, grandfather, son, and grandson.

6:1:2:1414. He said, 'Whereon shall we set thee up 1?'--'On the hita (set, or suitable, good)!' he said: the vital air is indeed something good, for the vital air is good for all beings. And inasmuch as he set him up on the hita, therefore one says, 'I shall set up, I am setting up, I have set up 2.'

6:1:2:1515. As to this they say, 'What is hita, and what is upahita?' The vital air, forsooth, is the 'hita,' and speech is the 'upahita,' for it is on the vital air that this speech is based (upa-hitâ). The vital air, again, is the 'hita,' and the limbs are the 'upahita,' for on the vital air these limbs are indeed based.

6:1:2:1616. This, then, was his (Pragâpati's) 'kitya' (Agni to be set up on an altar-pile); for he had to be built up (ki) by him, and therefore was his 'kitya.' And

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so indeed he now is the Sacrificer's 'kitya;' for he is to be built up by him, and therefore is his 'kitya.'

6:1:2:1717. Now it was those five bodily parts (tanu) of his (Pragâpati's) that became relaxed,--hair, skin, flesh, bone, and marrow,--they are these five layers (of the fire-altar); and when he builds up the five layers, thereby he builds him up by those bodily parts; and inasmuch as he builds up (ki), therefore they are layers (kiti).

6:1:2:1818. And that Pragâpati who became relaxed is the year; and those five bodily parts of his which became relaxed are the seasons; for there are five seasons, and five are those layers: when he builds up the five layers, he thereby builds him up with the seasons; and inasmuch as he builds up (lays down), therefore they are layers.

6:1:2:1919. And that Pragâpati, the year, who became relaxed, is that very Vâyu (wind) who blows yonder. And those five bodily parts of his, the seasons, which became relaxed, are the regions (or quarters) 1; for five in number are the regions, and five those layers: when he builds up the five layers, he builds him up with the regions; and inasmuch as he builds up, therefore they are layers.

6:1:2:2020. And the Fire that is laid down on the built (altar), that is yonder Sun;--that same Agni is indeed (raised) on the altar, and that just because Agni had restored him (Pragâpati).

6:1:2:2121. But they say,--Pragâpati, when relaxed, said to the gods, 'Restore me!' The gods said to Agni, 'In thee we will heal this our father Pragâpati.'--

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[paragraph continues] 'Then I will enter into him, when whole,' he said.--'So be it!' they said. Hence, while being Pragâpati, they yet call him Agni.

6:1:2:2222. In the fire the gods healed him by means of oblations; and whatever oblation they offered that became a baked brick and passed into him. And because they were produced from what was offered (ishta), therefore they are bricks (ishtakâ). And hence they bake the bricks by means of the fire, for it is oblations they thus make.

6:1:2:2323. He spake, 'Even as much as ye offer, even so much is my happiness:' and inasmuch as for him there was happiness (ka) in what was offered (ishta), therefore also they are bricks (ishtakâ).

6:1:2:2424. Here now Âktâkshya used to say, 'Only he who knows abundant bricks possessed of (special) prayers, should build up the fire (altar): abundantly indeed he then heals Father Pragâpati.'

6:1:2:2525. But Tândya used to say, 'Surely the bricks possessed of prayers are the nobility, and the space-fillers 1 are the peasants; and the noble is the feeder, and the peasantry the food; and where there is abundant food for the feeder, that realm is indeed prosperous and thrives: let him therefore pile up abundant space-fillers!' Such then was the speech of those two, but the settled practice is different therefrom.

6:1:2:2626. Now that father (Pragâpati) is (also) the son:

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inasmuch as he created Agni, thereby he is Agni's father; and inasmuch as Agni restored him, thereby Agni is his (Pragâpati's) father; and inasmuch as he created the gods, thereby he is the father of the gods; and inasmuch as the gods restored him, thereby the gods are his fathers.

6:1:2:2727. Twofold verily is this,--father and son, Pragâpati and Agni, Agni and Pragâpati, Pragâpati and the gods, the gods and Pragâpati--(for) whosoever knows this.

6:1:2:2828. He builds up with 1, 'By that deity'--that deity, doubtless, is Vâk (speech),--'Aṅgiras-like,'--Aṅgiras, doubtless, is the breath;--'lie thou steady!'--that is, 'lie thou firm;' or 'lie thou firmly established.' It is both with speech and with breath that he builds; for Agni is speech, and Indra is the breath; and the fire (agni) relates to Indra and Agni: as great as Agni is, as great as is his measure, by so much he thus builds him up. And again, Indra and Agni are all the gods, (for) Agni belongs to all deities: thus as great as Agni is, as great as is his measure, by so much he thus builds him up.

6:1:2:2929. Here now they say, 'Wherefore is Agni (the fire-altar) built of this (earth)?' But, surely, when that deity (Pragâpati) became relaxed (fell asunder), he flowed along this (earth) in the shape of his life-sap; and when the gods restored him (put him together), they gathered him up from this earth: this earth then is that one brick 2, for Agni is this earth, since

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it is thereof 1 that the whole Agni is built up. Now this earth is four-cornered, for the quarters are her corners: hence the bricks are four-cornered; for all the bricks are after the manner of this earth.

6:1:2:3030. As to this they say, 'But if he (Agni) thus consists of one brick, how then (comes he to be) a five-bricked 2 one?' Now surely the first brick of clay is this earth,--whatever made of clay he places on that (altar) that is that one brick. And when he puts thereon the heads of the animal victims 3, that is the animal-brick. And when he puts on the gold plate and man 4, when he scatters gold shavings thereon, that is the golden brick. And when he puts on two spoonfuls (of ghee) 5 when he puts on the mortar and pestle 6, and fire-sticks, that is the wood-brick. And when he puts on a lotus-leaf (petal), a tortoise 7, sour curds, honey, ghee, and whatever other food he puts on, that is the fifth brick, the food. Thus, then, it is a five-bricked (Agni).

6:1:2:3131. As to this they say, 'On which side is the head of the brick?'--'Where he touches it and says a prayer,' so say some, 'on one end of the naturally perforated (brick) 8 alone indeed should he

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say a prayer while touching it, but thus all those (bricks) of his are turned towards the naturally perforated one.' Let him not do so, for those bricks doubtless are his (Agni's) limbs, his joints; and it would be just as if he were to put a head on each limb, on each joint. But indeed, the fire which is deposited on the pile, that is the head of all those (bricks).

6:1:2:3232. Here they say, 'How many animal victims are laid upon the fire (altar)?'--Let him say 'Five,' for he does lay thereon those five victims.

6:1:2:3333. Or, 'One,' he may say; 'a ewe;' for a ewe (avi) is this earth, since she favours (av) all these creatures. And the fire (altar) also is this earth, for the whole fire (altar) is built up thereof: hence he may say, 'One.'

6:1:2:3434. Or, 'Two,' he may say, 'two sheep;' for sheep, indeed, are both this (earth) and that (sky), since these two favour all these creatures;--what clay (there is in the brick) that is this earth; and what water there is that is that sky; and the bricks consist of clay and water: therefore he may say, 'Two.'

6:1:2:3535. Or he may say, 'A cow (or bullock, go);--'the cow forsooth means these worlds, for whatever walks (gam) that walks in these worlds 1; and that

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fire also is these worlds: therefore he may say, 'A cow.'

6:1:2:3636. As to this they say, 'For what object is this fire (altar) built? Having become a bird, he (Agni) shall bear me to the sky!' so say some; but let him not think so; for by assuming that form, the vital airs became Pragâpati 1; by assuming that form, Pragâpati created the gods 2; by assuming that form, the gods became immortal and what thereby the vital airs, and Pragâpati, and the gods became, that indeed he (the Sacrificer) thereby becomes.


149:1 As here, this class of deities--whose sphere of action are the terrestrial regions--was associated with Agni, the guardian of the earth, at III, 4, 2, 1.

149:2 Another class of (storm) deities, here associated with Vâyu, the wind, the guardian of the air-region.

149:3 This class of deities (of light) are here associated with the p. 150 Sun, who indeed is called the Âditya in paragraphs 4 and 10 (instead of Sûrya).

150:1 Professor Weber (Ind. Stud. XIII, p. 268) has drawn attention to the discrepancy between this passage and III, 4, 2, 1, where the Visve Devâh (with Brihaspati) are denied the privilege of forming a special class of deities,--this being one of many points of difference, doctrinal as well as linguistic, between Books 1-5 and 6-10.

150:2 Professor Delbrück, Altind. Synt. p. 147, reads 'apakanta,'--the plants matured fruit.

150:3 Literally, he fell asunder, or to pieces, became disjointed. Hence, when the gods 'restored' Pragâpati (the lord of generation, identified with the sacrifice, and with Agni, the fire), the verb used is samskri; 'to put together;' and this putting together, or restoration, of Pragâpati is symbolically identified with the building up of the fire-altar.

151:1 Upa-dhâ. Paragraphs 14 and 15 involve a double meaning of the word hita, the past participle of dhâ, to put,--viz. put, set, or suitable, beneficial.

151:2 Or, 'I shall put on,' &c., upa-dhâ, the verb used of the putting on of bricks in building up the altar. Cf. II, 1, 2, 15.

152:1 That is, the four quarters, or cardinal points of the compass; and the upper region, or rather the upward (or perpendicular) direction.

153:1 In contradistinction to the yagushmatî (prayerful) bricks, which bear special names, and have special formulas attached to them; lokam-prinâ (space-filling ones) is the technical term for those bricks which have no special prayers belonging to them, but are piled up with a common formula (Vâg. S. XII, 54; Sat. Br. VIII, 7, 2, 1 seq.), beginning 'lokam prina khidram prina,' 'fill the space, fill the gap!'

154:1 This is the formula (Vâg. S. XII, 53) with which the so-called 'sâdanam' or 'settling' of the bricks is performed. See VII, 1, 1, 30.

154:2 That is, the first brick which the wife of the Sacrificer herself forms, and which is called Ashâdhâ. See VI, 3, 1, 1; 5, 3, 1.

155:1 Viz. by means of the clay bricks, and the loose soil put between the layers.

155:2 Sâyana only refers here to the fact that the sacrifice (yagña) is called 'pâṅkta,' 'the fivefold.'

155:3 See VII, 5, 2, 1 seq.

155:4 See VII, 4, 1, 15 seq.

155:5 See VII, 4, 1, 32 seq.

155:6 See VII, 5, 1, 12 seq.

155:7 See VII, 5, 1, 1 seq.

155:8 Apparently some kind of porous stone. Three such perforated stones or 'bricks' are used in the construction of the fire-altar; viz. one which is laid on the gold man in the centre of the bottom layer (a sâman relating to bhûs, the earth, being pronounced p. 156 on it while touching it); the second in the centre of the third layer; and the third one being laid upon the centre of the completed fifth layer. They are meant to represent the three worlds, the holes being intended to afford to the Sacrificer (represented by the gold man) a passage to the highest regions. See VI, 2, 3, 1 seq.

156:1 It is not quite clear whether the author indulges in etymological trifling (go--gû). The Bombay MS. of Sâyana reads,--imâmstallokân gakkhatîti kavana(?gavana)karmasâdhanam gosabdam darsayati.

157:1 See VI, 1, 1, 2 seq., where the seven vital airs are represented as assuming the form of a bird--the Purusha Pragâpati.

157:2 See paragraphs 7-11.

Next: VI, 1, 3. Third Brâhmana