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(vv. 36-40) verses he should bind on a splinter1 of the Ficus infectoria which he has left to stand for three nights or one in a (mess of) beans and boiled rice. If possible he should first sacrifice in the shadow of an elephant or on a tiger's skin or 2 sitting. (8.)
Then 3 when his body has been made prepared for indifference to desire, he should be bent on the Brahman offering. So he drives repeated death away. "The self is to be seen, to be heard, to be thought, to be meditated on,' 'Him they seek to know by repeating the Vedas, by studentship, by asceticism, by faith, by sacrifice, by fasting,' says Māṇḍūkeya. Therefore, he who knows this, calm, restrained, still, enduring, becoming full of faith, should see the self in the self,' says Māṇḍavya. "The person among the breath composed of knowledge is incomprehensible, to be distinguished as 'No, no.' This self is the warrior-class, this the priesthood, this the gods, this the Vedas, this the worlds, this all beings, this is all. This is That art thou.' The self is to be recognised in 'I am Brahman.' This Brahman, without predecessor, without superior, without other, immediate, without an exterior, is this self, Brahman (n.), all-experiencing," such is the teaching,' says Yajnavalkya." That one should not proclaim to one who is not a son or a pupil.' 'Were a man to offer this earth surrounded by water and filled with wealth, yet is this more
1 I read mahāvarohasya (varāhasya MSS.), a word hitherto only known from lexica, and udoha I regard as a derivative of uh, cf. udūha in Taittiriya Brahmana, iii, 8, 4, 3 (besom ?). Splinters are often used in such rites, Bloomfield, S.B. E., xlii, 291, etc.
2 The vapi distinctly makes this a third alternative, perhaps wrongly. 3 Cf. J.R.A.S., 1908, p. 382. For punarmṛtyu, see Lévi, La Doctrine du Sacrifice, pp. 93 seq.
Cf. Brhadaranyaka Upanisad, iv, 5, 6 (= ii, 4, 5).
5 Cf. Bṛhadaranyaka, iv, 4, 25.
6 Cf. Brhadaranyaka, iv, 4, 28.
Cf. Brhadaranyaka, iv, 4, 27 (with agrhyah); Deussen, Phil. of the Upanishads, p. 149, for Hillebrandt's theory of na as affirmative (cf. Vedische Mythologie, ii, 236, n. 2); na grhyah is possible here.
8 Cf. Bṛhadaraṇyaka, iv, 5, 7.
• Cf. Bṛhadaranyaka, iv, 5, 19.
than that, more than that,' is the teaching. This Upanisad he should declare to be the head of the Veda 2 in very truth. This is declared in a Rc :
'Head of the Rc verses, highest member of the Yajus verses, pinnacle of the Samans, the supreme tonsure of the Atharvans, he who studies not the Veda, him they call ignorant. Cleaving his head, he makes himself a corpse.3 (1.)
'He is but a pillar indeed who bears a burden, who repeats the Veda without knowing the meaning. Who knows the meaning alone wins prosperity. He goes to heaven, shaking off sin through knowledge.' (2.)
Om. Then follows the line of teachers.5 Honour to Brahman, honour to the teachers!
We have learnt it from Guṇākhya Sankhāyana, Guṇākhya Sankhāyana from Kahola Kauṣītaki, Kahola Kauṣītaki from Uddālaka Āruņi, Uddālaka Āruņi from Priyavrata Saumāpi,
1 Cf. Chandogya Upanisad, vii, 11, 6.
2 Cf. the title, Atharvasiras, of an early Atharvan Upanisad, Bloomfield, S.B.E., xlii, p. xlvii.
3 Cf. J.R.A.S., 1908, pp. 383, 384. For mundamunda, apparently an intensive Amredita, cf. Wackernagel, Altind. Gramm., ii, 1, 147, 148; Macdonell, Vedic Grammar, p. 155. Cf. the Mundaka Upanisad; Deussen, Sechzig Upanishad's, pp. 544, 545, which may possibly have been known to the writer of this late verse just as the Atharvasiras may have been known.
4 Cf. Yaska, Nirukta, i, 18, and Roth, Erläuterungen, p. 19; Burnell, Samhitopanisad Brahmana, p. 38; J.R.A.S., 1908, pp. 381, 382. As Colonel Jacob has reminded me, the second verse in Yaska occurs slightly altered in the introduction to the Mahābhāṣya.
5 The shortness of the Vamsa is in striking contrast to the lists of the Brhadaranyaka and Jaiminiya Brahmana Upanisads, and shows the impossibility of using such lists for chronology. For Kahola, see Bṛhadaranyaka Upaniṣad, iii, 5, 1 (Kahoda in Mādhyandina); for Uddālaka, Oldenberg, Buddha, E. T., p. 396; for Priyavrata Somāpi (or Saumāpi), Aitareya Brāhmaṇa, vii, 34; for Bṛhaddiva, Rși of RV., x, 120, Aitareya Brāhmaṇa, iv, 14; for Viśvamanas and Vyaśva, Ludwig, Rgveda, iii, 106; Oldenberg, Z.D.M.G., xlii, 217; for Sākamaśva, Ārṣeya Brāhmaṇa, i, 7 ; for Visvamitra, Ludwig, iii, 121.
Priyavrata Saumāpi1 from Somapa, Somapa from Soma 2 Prātiveśya, Soma Prātiveśya from Prativeśya, Prativeśya from Bṛhaddiva, Bṛhaddiva from Sumnayu, Sumnayu from Uddālaka, Uddālaka from Viśvamanas, Viśvamanas from Vyaśva, Vyaśva from Sākamaśva Devarata, Devarata from Visvamitra, Viśvāmitra from Indra, Indra from Prajapati, Prajapati from Brahman, Brahman (n.) is self-existent. Honour to Brahman, honour to Brahman!
1 The Berlin MS. reads Somāpi, as does a Benares MS. dated samvat 1663, of the existence of which I have just learned through the kindness of Dr. F. Otto Schrader, Director of the Adyar Library, Madras, who writes (July 24, 1908): "Adhyāyas i-v are- Kaușitaki Upanisad (the Mahāvrata section being absent), then follows Samhitopaniṣad as Adhyāya viii, the simplified Chandogya as Adhyāya ix, etc. At xii the counting of the Adhyayas ceases There seems to be some connection with the Bodleian MS." From Somapa, Saumapi would be regular (Whitney, Sanskrit Grammar, p. 466).
2 The Berlin and Benares MSS. have Soma, the Bodleian Sauma.
In the accepted system of the Vedic sacrifices the Mahāvrata forms the second last day of the Gavamayana Sattra, which lasts a year and is a symbol of the year. There can, however, be no doubt that this position of the day is rather artificial, and that the Mahāvrata marks the commencement of the year. The priestly ingenuity, which has transferred the Mahāvrata to the second last day of the year, has created a duplicate in the Caturvimsa, the second day of the Gavāmayana, but it is easy to see through so obvious a manipulation.
Much more obscure is the relation of the Mahavrata and the Vișuvant day, which in the accepted system is reckoned as the middle of the Gavamayana. Professor Hillebrandt1 has expressed the view that the Vișuvant and the Mahāvrata have been changed in place by the priests, and that originally the Mahāvrata fell on the Summer solstice, and the Visuvant began the year at the Winter solstice. The view is extremely plausible and supported by strong arguments, so that it deserves full and careful consideration.
Now it is quite certain that the accepted ritualistic view places the Mahāvrata at the Winter solstice. The Kausītaki Brāhmaṇa, for example, explicitly says that it occurs at the moment when the sun, after going south for six months, stops, as it is about to turn for the north. It has, indeed, been suggested that the six monthly periods refer to the equinoxes, but I consider that Dr. Thibaut 3 has once and for all disposed of this argument, which in any case would not affect Professor Hillebrandt's position. It remains, therefore, to seek for
1 See Hillebrandt, Rom. Forsch., v, 299 seq.; Vedische Opfer und Zauber, pp. 157, 158; Vedische Mythologie, iii, 216. Oldenberg, Religion des Veda, p. 444, rejects the theory of change of date, but gives no reasons. 3 Ind. Ant., xxiv, 85 seq.
2 xix, 3.
evidence showing that another dating of the Mahāvrata was possible.
A sign of this has been seen by Professor Hillebrandt in the statement in the Pañcaviméa Brāhmaṇa1 that the Mahavrata should be placed in the middle of the year. But the statement is not accepted by the Brahmana as correct, and as it is characteristic of the Brahmaņa style to make every sort of vague suggestion before arriving at the facts, it is not even possible to say that any Brahminical school, much less the people, ever reckoned the Mahāvrata at the Summer solstice.
More important is a second argument derived from the assignment of Samans to the Mahāvrata in the Śānkhāyana Śrauta Sutra. That Sutra ascribes to that day the Bṛhat, Mahādivākīrtya, and Rathantara Samans, and Professor Hillebrandt shows that the Bṛhat is made up of hymns and verses addressed for the most part, though not in all cases, to Indra, the Mahādivākīrtya of hymns and verses addressed to Surya. Now both the Maitrāyaṇī Samhita3 and the Taittirīya Brāhmaṇa1 connect the Visuvant with the Diväkirtya or Mahadivākīrtya Saman, and it is therefore suggested that the presence of this Sāman in the Mahāvrata is merely the result of contamination of the rites, and that originally to the Mahāvrata and the Viṣuvant respectively belonged the Bṛhat and the Mahādivākirtya Samans, connected the one with Indra, the other with Surya. Now prayers to Surya are most naturally connected with the efforts required at the Winter solstice to rescue the sun from destruction and death, while Indra's season is the breaking of the monsoon about the Summer solstice, when he overcomes Vṛtra, the demon of drought, and waxes great.5 A further support for this argument is derived from the third of the Sāmans assigned to the Mahāvrata by Sankhāyana, the Rathantara. That Saman was, it is held, originally, in place of the Mahādivākīrtya, the Sāman of the Viṣuvant, and as it is evidently connected with the sun-its very name 'wheelimpelling' reminding us of the wheels used in Schleswig at
1 iv, 10, 3; cf. Taittirīya Brāhmaṇa, i, 2, 6.
2 xi, 13, 21 seq.
i, 2, 3, 1.