To understand the true meaning of this book you must apply the
The four subsidiary means of reasoning:
- Listening or reading most attentively with a calm mind to the lectures of a learned man, and more so if the subjects are a divine Science, because it is the most abstruse and the subtlest of all the sciences.
- Thinking over what one has heard or read in retirement, and in removing doubts if there be any by questioning the speaker. Questions may sometimes be asked even in the middle of a discourse if the speaker and the audience think proper.
- Rationalizing is the next step.
When all doubts are cleared after hearing or reading a discourse and
thinking over it, let the enquirer enter into the superior condition and
see for himself by the help of yoga (self-realization through meditation)
whether it is the same as he had heard and reasoned out or not.
- The result is the correct
knowledge of the nature, properties and characteristics of the desired
PAGE 101 PERSONSALITY AND CHARACTER
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Swami Dayanand was a man of gigantic built. He was over six feet in height and had a compact, well-knit body, but full, which latter fact, instead of giving him a stoutish look, only contributed to making the symmetry of his person singularly perfect. He has a broad and expansive forehead, considerably protruding forward, which unmistakably indicated his possession of an intellect of the highest order; while his unusually raised crown pointed as unmistakably to his kinship with the sage and saint whom the Word Divine, as the Upanishad, differentiates from ordinary mortals by, conferring upon him the epithet of dhir.
The expression of the face, when in repose, was preeminently contemplative and dreamy, grand in its smoothness; for deep minds are like deep waters, seldom unruffled, powerful in their wealth and abundance of depth, and carrying on their mighty operations in silence in their own all-sufficient and capacious retreats. When, however, the great Teacher was excited (and it was but rarely that he was excited), the glory of his face was the glory of a thunder and lightning.
A lion surveying the inferior herd defying his power could not look sublimer than he when face to face with and roused against, the daring and blasphemous skeptic of little knowledge and puny intellect. And yet his withering look of scorn or of contempt was not meant for the persons themselves, for malice was utterly foreign to his nature.; it was only meant for the views, so false and mischievous in their character, which, in their ignorance and conceit, the unblushingly put forward and advocated.
He was for chastising faults as the Word Divine taught him, and as he admitted do often in his interpretation of passages from that Word, and not for chastising the individuals who had faults. His memory was marvelously capacious and retentive, the mass of facts stored in it and ever ready for sue being tremendous. What the learned Pandits hopelessly essayed to hunt up in books, he could draw forth from this mental storage-house in a minute.
"His voice." In the words of the founders of the Theosophical Society, "was clear and loud, well calculated to give expression toe very shade of deep feeling ranging from a sweet childish caressing whisper to thundering wrath against the evil-doings of the priests."He was the most self-possessed of men (speaking as men go in debate), giving the most patient hearing to his adversaries and never interrupting while they were speaking, and his replies were almost invariably given in a tone and in a language calm and gentlemanly in the highest degree. No man could gasp sooner or better than he; he saw into the soul of
things without any apparent effort and interpreted the others "utterances with a faithfulness which left nothing to be desired. He was never irrelevant and never diffuse, and he insisted upon others" keeping to the point. Humorous and often sarcastic remarks fell upon his lips, but these were wholly free from anything offensive or gross and were never out of character with the dignified gravity and seriousness which generally characterized his demeanor.
Though acknowledged to be one of the greatest men of his age, even by those who differed with him on many points, he was simple and unostentatious in his habits and tastes. When alone, his entire apparel consisted of a wrapper and an under-cloth (dhoti), and in public too he generally appeared in as unassuming a dress as he could get hold of. He could command thousands and lakhs if he had liked, but though he valued wealth as a means to an end, though he regarded it as a great factor in the moral, intellectual and spiritual evolution of man, he regarded it as something absolutely worthless and positively injurious when valued for its own sake or interests of the flesh. His Will show his large-heartedness and his moral elevation.
A greater patriot, a sincerer and more earnest advocate of education and enlightenment, a truer and stronger friend of virtue in its all forms, a nobler philanthropist, Aryavarta has not produced for centuries past and will not see for ages to come. In purity of character, in utter fearlessness, in the acuteness and comprehensiveness of intellect, in devotion to his Divine Word and its truthful Teachings he an exact prototype of his equally great predecessor, Shankracharya. Like the Rishis and Maharishis of old death had no terrors for him: it was a passage which, when traverse, let to the portals of the house of immortality and everlasting bliss. Men of the type of Swami Dayanand are the making of thousands in their life and after their death, and the day will come(may it please God, that it comes soon!) when India will again shine all the glory of its pristine splendor.
WORKS AND TEACHINGS
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Swami Dayanandji was an Acharya, in the most comprehensive sense of the term. He was a teacher, a preacher, and the author of a prodigious mass of literature, distinguished for its pure and elevated diction, for its bold, uncompromising upholding of truth, for its loftiness of tone, and its depth and profundity of thought. His beliefs, as summed up by himself, were:-
The foregoing summary of Swami Dayanand's beliefs only sums up; the teaching of the ancient Aryan sages and saints on the subjects with which the "Beliefs" are concerned. Nothing was farther from the great reformer's thoughts than to found a new creed. In the introductory remarks to the "Beliefs", he says:-
- "He, who is called Brahm or the Most High; who is Parmatma, or the Spirit who permeates the whole universe; who is Truth, Intelligence and Happiness; whose nature, attributes and doings are holy; who is omniscient, incorporeal, all-pervading, unborn, infinite, almighty, just and merciful; who is the author of the universe, its protector and destroyer; who weighs the merits and demerits of individuals according to the requirements of absolute justice and equity, - even Him I believe to be the Lord of the creation."
- "The four Vedas, the repository of Knowledge and Religious Truth, are the Word of God. They comprise what is known as the samhita Mantra Bhag only they are absolutely free from error, and the supreme and independent authority in all things. They require no other book to bear witness to their Divine origin. "Even as the sun or a lamp is, by its own light, an absolute and independent manifester of its own existence, - yea, it reveals the existence of things other than itself" even so are the Vedas.
"The commentaries of the four Vedas, viz., the Brahmanas, the six Angas, the six Upangas, the four Up-vedas, and the eleven hundred and twenty seven Shakas, which are expositions of the Vedic texts by Brahma and other great Rishis I look upon as works of a dependent character. In other words, their authority is to be followed only so far as they conform to the teachings of the Vedas. Whatever passages in these works are antagonistic to the Vedic doctrine, I reject them entirely.
- That which is devoid of partiality, which inculcates justice and equity, which teaches truthfulness of thought, speech and deed, - in a word, that which is in conformity with the Will of God, as embodied in the Vedas, even that I call Dharma. But that which is intermixed with what is partial, which sanctions injustice, which teaches untruthfulness of thought, speech and deed, - in a word, that which is antagonistic to the Will of God, as embodied in the Vedas, that I term Adharma.
- The immortal, eternal Principle which endowed with thought and judgment, with desire and hate, which is susceptible to
pleasure and pain, whose capacity for knowledge is limited, - even that is "Soul."
- God and Soul are two distinct entities. Each has certain attributes that are not and cannot be predictable of the other, and each performs certain functions that the other does not and cannot perform. They are, however, inseparable one from the other, being related to each other as the pervader and the pervaded. Even as a material object is, was, and shall always be, distinct from the space in which it exists and as the two cannot, were not, and shall never be, one and the same, even so, God and Soul are to each other. Their mutual relation is that of the pervader and pervaded, of father and son. This worships and that is worshipped.
- "Three things are eternal, namely God, Soul, and Prakriti - the material cause of the universe. These are also known as the material cause of the universe. These are also known as eternal substances. Being eternal, their essential qualities, their functions, and their natures are eternally the same."
- "Things, properties, and functions, which result from the combination, are destroyed on the occurrence of a separation. But the power or force, by virtue of which a substance unites with anther or separates from it, is eternally inherent in the substance, and the power will compel it to seek similar unions and disunions in the future. The unions and disunions, as well as the power by virtue of which they take place, are also eternal, in consequence of the regularity of their succession."
- "That which results from a combination of primary elements compounded together consistently with a thorough and complete knowledge of the distinctive properties of every separate element and with all the perfection of design, - even that, in all its infinite variety, is called creation.
- "The purpose of creation is the essential and natural exercise of the creative energy of the Deity. A person once asked someone: "What is the purpose of the eyes?" "Why, to see with, to be sure," was the reply. The same is the case. God's creative energy must have a play. The enjoyment of the fruit of their actions by Souls, and so on, is also the purpose of creation.
- "The Creation has a Creator, and that is no other than the afore-mentioned God. The existence of a design in the universe, as well as the fact that dead unconscious matter is incapable of forming itself into the seed or any other thing endowed with life and vitality, shows that it must have a creator.
- "The earthly bondage has a cause. This cause is ignorance, which is the source of sin as, among other things, it leads man to worship things other than the Creator and obscures his intellectual faculties; whereof pain and suffering is the result. Ignorance is termed bondage, as it involves the Soul in pain which everybody wants to escape but which he must suffer.
- "The emancipation of the soul from pain and suffering of every description, its enjoying, unburdened by the gross physical body, a career of freedom in the all-pervading God and His immense
creation for a stated period, and its resumption of earthly life after the expiration of that period, it termed salvation.
- "The means of salvation are the worship of God or the contemplation of His nature and attributes with concentrated attention, the practice of virtue, a thorough control over the passions during the period of study, the society of the wise and learned, the love of true knowledge, purity of thought, active benevolence, and so on.
- "Arth is wealth acquired by honesty and fair-dealing; but that which is the fruit of dishonesty and fraud, - that is anarth or unrighteous wealth.
- Kama or true enjoyments are those which are the combined fruit of uprightness of principle and honestly-acquired wealth."
- The "caste" of an individual is determined by merit and sterling worth only.
- "He alone deserves the title of "king" who is endowed with exalted qualities and benevolent intentions, who delights in virtuous deeds, whose mind is free from bias and partiality, who follows the dictates of justice, who loves and treats his subjects as his own offspring and who, as such, is ever engaged in promoting their interests and their happiness.
- "He alone deserves to be called as "subject" who, possessed of excellent qualities and actuated by good motives, delighting the virtuous deeds, free from the influence of prejudice and following the behests of justice, is ever engaged in furthering the happiness of the fellow-subjects and that of his sovereign, whom he regards in the light of a parent, provided the said sovereign is not an enemy of the empire.
- "He who always thinks and judges for himself, who is ever ready to accept the truth and reject falsehood, who puts down the unjust but patronizes the just, who has as much regard for the happiness of others as his own even him I call just.
- "Devas (gods) are those who are wise and learned; asuras, those who are foolish and ignorant; rakshas, those who are wicked and sin-loving; and pishachas, those whose mode of life is filthy and debasing.
- "Devapuja (or the worship of the good) consists in showing honor and respect to the wise and learned, to ones father and mother, to the imparters of knowledge, to the itinerant preachers of the true doctrine, to just and impartial sovereigns, to lovers of righteousness, to the women who are chaste and faithful to their husbands, to the men who are devoted and faithful to their wives. The opposite of this is called adevapuja or the worship of demons. To respect the good (as explained and detailed in this para.) is real worship, but he worship of dead, unconscious objects I utterly abhor.
- "That, of which the fruit is the acquisition of knowledge courteousness and good behavior, uprightness of principle, and purity of thought, which dispels ignorance, -even that is education.
- The Puranas (ancient commentaries of the Vedas and other works on theology) are the Aitreya Bahmana and similar compositions by the great Rishis like Brahma and others. In Itihas or history I include the kalpa, gatha, and Narashansi. The Bhagvat and other books of that sort are not the puranas
- "Tirth is that by means of which the "sea of pain" is crossed. It consists in the truthfulness of speech, in the acquisition of true knowledge, in cultivating the society of the wise and good, in the practice of morality, in contemplating the nature and attributes of the Deity with concentrated attention, inactive benevolence, in the diffusion of education, and so on. Bathing-places, etc., are no tirths.
- "An energetic and active life is preferable to passive acquiescence in the decrees of fate, inasmuch as destiny is the consequence in the decrees of fate, inasmuch as destiny is the consequence of acts. A life of virtuous activity will secure the Soul a good destiny as a life of wickedness will produce the opposite result. Hence acts, being the maker of destiny, virtuous activity is superior to passive resignation.
- "The most approved behavior of one man towards his fellow-creatures lies in his treating everyone according to his worth, in sympathizing with him, from the core of his joys and sorrows, in his losses and gains. The contrary conduct is reprehensible.
- "Sanskar" or ceremonial is that which contributes to man's physical, mental, and spiritual improvement. The sanskars (ceremonies), from conception to cremation, are sixteen in number. Their due and proper observance is obligatory on all. Nothing should be done for the departed after the remains have been cremated.
- "The performance of yajna is a most commendable duty. It consists in showing honor and respect to the wise and learned, in the proper application of the principles of the chemistry and physical science to the affairs of life, in the dissemination of knowledge, in the performance, of Agnihotra, which, by contributing to the purification of the air and the healthy growth of vegetables, directly tends to promote the well-being of all sentient creatures.
- "Aryas are men of exalted principle, the Dasyus those who lead a life of wickedness and sin.
- "This country is called Aryavarta because it has been the residence of the Aryas from the very dawn of creation. It is bounded on the north by the Himalayas, on the south by the Vindhya mountains, on the east by the Attak, and on the west by the Brahmputra. The track within these limits is alone Aryavarta, and those that have been living in it from times immemorial are Aryas.
- "He alone is an Acharya who can teach the sciences of the Vedas and their commentaries, who inculcates, both by example and precept, the practice of virtue and the avoidance of what is impure and immoral.
- "He alone is Shishya (pupil) who has the capacity for assimilating knowledge and grasping the truth, whose moral character
is unimpeachable, who is eager to learn, and devoted to his teacher.
- "By the term "Guru" is meant, father or mother. It also applies to all those through whose instrumentality the mind is grounded in truth and weened from falsehood.
- "He is a Purohita or priest who wishes well to his Yajmans and preaches to them absolute truth.
- "An Upadhya or Professor is one who can teach certain portions of the Vedas, or who can teach the Angas.
- "Shishtachar consists of accepting the truth and rejecting untruth, realized and detected after deep and prolonged study, carried on in perfect purity of heart, and after a careful examination of the laws of nature. The man who practices shishtachar is called (gentleman).
- "I admit the validity of proof based on ocular demonstration and with it the remaining seven kinds of proofs.
- "I call him Apt whose veracity is unimpeachable, who is the man of pure moral character, and who labors for the good of others.
- "Those are really principles of truth that can satisfy five tests:
Every doctrine must be subjected to these five tests and accepted if it can satisfy them all.
- They must not militate against nature and attributes of God.
- They must be in accord with the teachings of the Vedas.
- They must be in keeping with the well-known eight kinds of proofs based on natural laws.
- They must be consistent with the thoughts and ways of men of pure lives.
- They must be approved of by the internal spirit.
- "That is Paropkar or philanthropy which reclaims men from their vices and alleviates their sufferings, which implies them on in the direction of virtue, and thus promotes the general weal.
- "The Soul is a free agent, - at liberty to act as it pleases, but it is dependent on God for the enjoyment of the fruit of its actions. God is free and independent in dispensing justice and in enforcing every one of His just and righteous law.
- "Swarga is a prolonged enjoyment of happiness and the possession of things which conduce to this happiness.
- "Narka"means prolonged suffering and everything that contributes to pain and suffering.
- "Janma" or birth is the Soul's assumption of the gross, visible body. Viewed in relation to time its existence is three-fold, viz., past, present, and future.
- "Birth means the union of the Soul with the body, and death their separation.
- When according to the rules prescribed by the Shastras, a person bestows, as the result of reciprocal affection, his or her hand upon one of the opposite sex and in a public manner, he or she is said to contract marriage.
- Niyoga is a temporary union of a person with another of the opposite sex belonging to his or her plane or moving in a higher sphere for the raising of issue when the marriage has failed to fulfill its legitimate purpose. It is resorted to in extreme cases, either on the death of one's consort, or when the protracted disease has destroyed productive energy in the husband or wife.
- "Stuti" (or praise) is the enumeration of Divine attributes and qualities, with the view to fix them in the mind and realize their meaning. Among other things it inspires us with love towards God.
- "Prarthana" is praying to God, after one has done his own best, for the gift of knowledge and similar, other blessings which result from communion with Him. Its principal fruit is humility and serenity of mind.
- Upasna is conforming ourselves, as far as possible, in purity and holiness to the Divine Spirit. It is feeling the presence of the Deity in the Soul by the realization of His all-pervading nature. Upsana extends the bounds of our knowledge.
- "Sagun Stuti" is praising God by the enumeration of qualities and attributes which He possesses, but Nirgun Stuti is praising God by those qualities and attributes which are foreign to His nature.
"Sagun Prarthana" is praying to God for virtuous qualities; Nirgun Prarthana is imploring the Deity to cast out from us that which is evil.
"Sagun upasna" is the realization, in the Soul, of the presence of God as possessing attributes which are inherent in Him, while Nirgun upasna is the realization, in the Soul, of the presence of God as distinct from what is foreign of His nature."
I believe in a religion based on universal and all-embracing principles which have always been admitted as such at present, and which will continue to command the allegiance of mankind in the ages to come. Hence it is that the religion in question is called the primeval eternal religion, which means that it is above the hostility of all human creeds whatsoever. The faith believed in by the ignorant, or by the misguided believers in human creeds, is not worth being accepted by the wise. That faith alone must really be worth being believed in which is followed by men true in thought, word, and deed, of philanthropic instincts, just and learned, and of course, all faiths discarded by such men must be considered to be the reverse of authoritative.
"My conception of God and all other things in the universe is founded on the teaching of the Veda and other true Shastras and is in conformity with the conception of the same transmitted to us by all the sages, from Brahma down to Jaimini, and this conception (being
founded on absolute truth), I offer for the acceptance of all good men. My beliefs are the same as are worthy of being accepted by all men of all ages. My object, indeed, is nothing more than that I should believe in truth and make others believe in it, reject falsehood and make others reject it. Had I been biased and bigoted, I would have joined any of the prevailing Indian creeds. But I never did so. On the contrary, I reject what is objectionable and false in the institutions of this or any other country, but to that which is approved by Dharma, I cling, nor will I ever give it up. For contrary conduct is wholly unworthy of man."As already hinted, the Swami's "Beliefs" find their exposition and expansion in all his writings, directly or indirectly, notably in the Satyartha Prakasha and the RigVedadi Bhashya Bhumika, the most popular and the most widely studied of his works, - books which are meant for the masses and which must, in the fullness of time, influence the masses the most. We shall notice these first.
"He is really a man who possesses a sympathetic nature and fully understands what would be conducive to the happiness of others, and what is fraught with pain for them, what would bring them profit and what would cause them loss. Such a man will fear not the cruel, however strong; but his attitude towards the truly virtuous, however weak, will be one of humility. He would always exert himself to the utmost to protect the righteous, and mindful of their welfare, conduct himself towards them worthily, even though they are feeble and helpless and destitute of external attractions."
"On the other hand, those who are unrighteous, he could constantly strive to disarm and weaken, even though they are powerful princes and affluent in worldly attractions and things. In other words, the man in question should, as far as it lies in his power, perpetually endeavor to undermine the power of the vicious and tyrannical and to strengthen that of the good and the just. He may have to bear any amount of suffering, he may even to quaff the bitter cup of death in the performance of his duty, but he should not give up his "Dharma"
THE SATYARTH PRAKASH
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The Satyarth Prakash is divided into two parts and consists of fourteen chapters in all, the first part comprising ten chapters, and the second four.
THE FIRST CHAPTER is an exposition of the word "OM,"the highest, the most expressive and most comprehensive name of the Deity in the world's religious literature. In the course of the exposition it has been proved, on the authority of Vyakarna, that the words Agni, Vayu, Indra, etc., occurring in the Vedas, are primarily the names of the Supreme Being, expressive of His individual attributes, unlike "Om" which expresses the attributes collectively and in their uttermost perfection.
THE SECOND CHAPTER sets forth the methods which, if followed, would give parents healthy and strong children, and it further lays down rules regarding their "nurture." The greatest possible stress has been laid throughout on the necessity of the father and mother avoiding or doing or saying aught calculated to weaken the infant's mind.
THE THIRD CHAPTER is one Education. It upholds the importance of Brahmacharya and lays down rules which the Brahmacharies and the Brahmacharinies must carry out in the interests of their physical, moral and intellectual development. It refutes the assertion that the Vedas are not for women, and the Shudras, and ends with the following words:-
"A country in which Brahmacharya, knowledge and the Vedic Religion receive the attention they deserve, that country is certainly blessed." THE FOURTH CHAPTER is concerned with marriage and the Grihastha Ashrama. It lays down the rule that the girl a person contemplates marrying should not be within the sixth degree on his mother's side, nor of the gotra of his father, that the bride and the bridegroom should be natives of places distant from each other, one of the eight reasons given in support of the injunction being that the word duhita (daughter), according to the Shastras, means - native of a distant place.
The chapter then specifies the marriageable age for the maiden as well as for the young man and the manner in which the marriage ceremony should be conducted. No male should marry until he has completed his twenty-fifth year a least, and no female till she is at least sixteen years old. Mutual choice and consent have been declared as indispensable conditions of every marriage. Early-marriage has been denounced as something positively injurious, being destructive of physical, mental and moral vigor and stamina as the bane of the individual and the curse of nations.
The marriage of virgin-widows has been upheld, and niyoga, on the authority of the Shastras, advocated. The end of a marriage has been shown to be the procreation of good offspring and not the enjoyment of pleasure. It has been incidentally pointed out that real sterling worth alone is the determinator of the individual's social status and not birth. the five Maha Yajnas (the five daily duties) have been dealt with, and their importance fully pointed out, in the interest of the householder.
In answer to the question :"
"Is Grihastha Ashrama superior to the other ashramas, or inferior to them?"
The Swami observes that each "ashrama" is superior institution when the members thereof faithfully perform their appointed duties, and then adds:
"But as streams, both large and small, keep wandering till they find their rest in the sea, even so, the three ashramas are dependent upon the Grihastha Ashrama for support. No ashrama can get on, in any way, without the assistance of this ashrama for it is the Grihastha Ashrama alone that daily, by making gifts to and supplying the Brahmacharis, the Vanprasthis and the Sanyasis with food, etc., contributes towards their maintenance. Hence, one, intensely desirous of securing both worldly happiness and moksha, should enter the Grihastha Ashrama"Whoever runs down the Grihastha Ashrama, deserves to be denounced himself, but whoever praises it, the same worthy of being praised."THE FIFTH CHAPTER speaks of the Vanaprastha and the Sanyas Ashramas. The duties and responsibilities of both the Vanprasthis and the Sanyansis have been fully explained. It has been pointed out that no Sanyasi deserves the name that does not seek his own highest good in furthering the highest interests of others by
preaching truth to them. While the idea that Sanyasis cannot accept gifts has been shown to be erroneous, the fact has been laid stress upon that their attitude towards things worldly, however precious, should be one of perfect indifference. The Brahmans alone can enter the Sanyas Ashrama.
THE SIXTH CHAPTER IS ON "Government". In order that the well-being and prosperity of a government be permanently ensured, there being and prosperity of a government be permanently ensured, there should be three distinct sabhas to carry on its affairs - the Raj Sabha, the Dharma Sabha and Vidya Sabha.*
THE SEVENTH CHAPTER is on "God and the Vedas." It proves the existence of God, showing that the Vedic conception of God alone is perfect, and it proves the infallibility and eternity of the Vedas by unanswerable arguments.
THE EIGHTH CHAPTER deals with the origin, maintenance and dissolution of the universe. It is a most learned chapter, full of argument.
THE NINTH CHAPTER explains the nature and character of Vidya and Avidya, Bandh and Moksha** and for the learning and intellectual depth displayed in the treatment of the subjects, it is fully on a level with the foregoing two chapters.
THE TENTH CHAPTER speaks of conduct, approved and reprehensible, of things that may be eaten and that should not be eaten. The chapter forbids indulgence in flesh-diet.
The remaining CHAPTERS, containing many more pages than the first ten, embody an intensely interesting account of the various creeds prevailing in Aryavarta, and a complete refutation of whatever there is un-Vedic or false and misleading in them***
The Rigvedadi Bhashya Bhumika
Back to contents is a Sanskrit-Hindi work. It is an invaluable and scholarly Introduction to the Veda-Bhashya, pointing out the lofty and sublime character of the Vedic Teachings and showing how the germs of all sciences are to be found in the Vedas. The Introduction shows how the latter-day commentaries by Sayana, Mahidhar and others, Indians or Europeans, are utterly misleading and false, and justifies the need of a fresh commentary, based entirely on the ancient Niruktak system of interpretation.
*The Governing Body, the Ecclesiastical Body, and the Education Department.
**Ordinarily translated ignorance, knowledge, bondage and liberation.
***A few extracts fromt he Bhumiko shall be given.
We shall give quotations:- The Divine origin of the Vedas
From Him, the adorable, from Him who is true, all-knowledge, all-happiness, and so forth, - the Perfect Being, who ought to be the object of universal homage, and should be worshipped by all, - yes, from this almighty par Brahma have proceeded all the four Vedas, - the Rig Veda, the Yajur Veda, the Sama Veda, and the Atharva Veda. Even this is to be believed. The term Sarvahut may also appropriately be applied to the Vedas. The Vedas are sarvahut, for they are worthy of being accepted and received by all men. The object of the two verbs Jajinire and ajayat (in this mantra) is to show that the Vedas contain numerous sciences, and the repetition of the word tasmat is also to convince man that they are of Divine origin. Inasmuch as the Vedas have in them Gayatri and the other Chhandas the word Chhandansi, in the mantra, indicates the Divine origin of the fourth Veda the Atharva. Even this is to be believed.
- "From that adorable Yajna have proceeded the Rig and Sama; from Him have proceeded the Chhandansi; and from Him has proceeded the Yaju." " (Yaju Chapter 31, Mantra 7)
- "He from whom the Rig has sprung, He from whom the Yaju, has sprung, like unto whose loma is the Sama, and like unto whose mouth is the Atharva Angiras, - what is He like? Him thou declare. Reply Know that He is Skamba. Atharva.
"Yajna is verily the Vishnu." (Shathpatha Kand 1, Chapter 1.)"Vishnu made this universe and disposed the things (therein or thereof) in a three-fold order." (This is to be found in the Yajur Veda.) The creation of this universe can be predicated of God only and of none other. "He who pervades both the animate and inanimate creation, He is Vishnu, the Supreme Being." The Almighty from whom the Rig Veda has proceeded, the Great God by whom the Yajur Veda has been revealed, the Being from whom the Sama Veda and the Atharva Veda have sprung, - the Atharva being like unto His mouth, the Sama like unto His lomas ( hairs on the body), the Yaju like unto His heart, and Rig like unto His vital airs (figuratively), - He from whom all the four Vedas have come forth:- what is this Deva like? " Declare Him unto me." This is the question. The answer is "He is Skamba," the supporter of the whole universe; other than this Deva (supporter of the universe) the author of the Vedas is none. Even this is to be believed.
The Rig Veda, the Sama Veda, the Yajur Veda and the Atharva Veda, are the out-breathings of that Great Being:- (Shatapatha, Kand 14, Chapter 5). To make this clearer: -"Maitriyi," says Yajnavalkya, "By Him, who encompasses even Space, the Righ Veda as the other Vedas all four of them are breathed forth, without effort, even as breath is exhaled without effort." Even this is be believed. Just as the vital air issuing from the body is again drawn into it, even so, are the Vedas breathed out and (finally) breathed in by God. This is certain.
On this subject many people say:- "How can the Vedas, which are embodied in words, have proceeded from God, who is incorporeal and without parts? We reply: Such an objection cannot hold good when urged against an almighty God. Why? Because, even in the absence of mouth, the pranas (vital airs) and other appliances, the power to do His work is ever manifest in the Supreme Being. And even as in the mind of man, when absorbed in silent thought, words embodying questions in answers are pronounced, even such must be believed to be the case with God also. He who is, beyond doubt, almighty, He never takes anyone's help in doing His work. We cannot do our work without the help of others, but such is not the case with God. When He, though incorporeal and without parts, made the whole world, then how can a person doubt His having made the Vedas? Yes, how? When in the world itself things extraordinary and marvelous to match the revealing of the Vedas have been done by Him.
Man had to be taught from the very beginning.
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(Pravadi )* - Undoubtedly, no one but God has, of a surety, the power to create the universe, but one can have the power to produce the Vedas like other works produced by men.
(Vadi)* - We reply: The power in man to produce any work whatsoever is possible only after he has read the Vedas, the production of God, and in no other way. Even at present nobody can become wise and learned until he has read something or listened to (what the wise say). Knowledge comes to men by a study of the Shastras, however slight and partial, through oral instruction, and by observing dealings of man with man. For example, if a person ( as soon as born) were removed to an isolated and secluded (though a safe place), and though regularly supplied with food and drink, etc., were never spoken or talked to by his guardians down to the hour of his death such a person would have absolutely sure and certain knowledge of anything. And further, as people inhabiting some immense forest have all the instincts and ways of brutes, even such instincts and ways would all mankind have retained from the beginning of creation to the present time if the Vedas had not been revealed to them. To have produced a book under these circumstances is out of the question.
(Skeptic) - Don't say such a thing. God has given men intuitive knowledge, and that is better than any book. Without this knowledge
*The two words mean believer and skeptic, respectively.
it is impossible even to understand the connection between the words of the Vedas and what they connote. By improving and developing this intuitive knowledge men can produce books too. Why, then, should one believe that the Vedas are the Word of God?
(Believer) "if this is your objection, we reply to it thus: has not God-given intuitive knowledge to the aforesaid child (whom we have supposed as brought up away from the haunts of men, and without any education), and has not He given the same knowledge to the people whom we have supposed as occupying the recesses of the vast forest? Why can't anyone of us become a Pandit without studying the Vedas, and without receiving instruction from others? What does all this lead to? To the conclusion, that mere intuitive knowledge won't do unless it is improved and supplemented by study and by instruction from without. As we write books only by means of the knowledge we gain from our contact with the wise and learned and through their works, even so, do mankind require (at the beginning of creation) the Divine knowledge (to get on in the world). Indeed, there is no books nor any system of education, in the beginning, it was impossible, in the very nature of things, for anyone to acquire knowledge if God had not vouchsafed his "knowledge" to the human race. How could under these circumstances, any man have produced a book? For, as far as acquired knowledge is concerned, man is dependent upon others for it; and mere intuitive knowledge can never enable him to become wise and learned.
And as regards the assertion that intuitive knowledge is better (than anything else, - this asserting too, is not based on truth. For intuitive knowledge, like the eye, is a means through which something is accomplished. Even as the eye is useless without the help of the mind, even so, is intuitive knowledge useless without the help of the wise teachers and of Divine Knowledge.
(Prativadi): - What object has God in revealing the Vedas? This I want to be explained here to me.
(Vadi): ~ We answer by a counter-question: What object would it have served, if God had not revealed the Vedas?
(Prativadi): - I don"t know.
(Vadi): ~ You may truly say this. You may now learn, by all means, what object God had in revealing the Vedas. Is, or is not, knowledge is God infinite?
(Prativadi): - Yes, it is infinite.
(Vadi): ~ For what purpose is this Knowledge?
(Prativadi): - For his own individual purposes.
(Vadi): ~ Is not God beneficient, and does not He do good to others?
(Prativadi): - He is, and does well to others. What then?
(Vadi): ~ Only this, that knowledge always exists for the benefit of him who possesses it, as well as for that of others. This is the two-fold object of knowledge. If God did not vouchsafe His Revelation unto us, His knowledge would become useless and abortive
in reference to the second object of knowledge. Hence it was that He made His knowledge fruitful by revealing the Vedas. The infinitely merciful God is like unto a father. As a father ever does kind offices unto his children, even so, God, in His infinite mercy, preaches His knowledge unto all men. Otherwise in consequence of ignorance and barbarism transmitted from age to age people would find it impossible to realize dharma, artha, kama, and moksha, and, hence, would be shut out from the enjoyment of supreme bliss. When the merciful God ahs created roots, fruits, etc., for the enjoyment and happiness of His subjects, how could He "bestower of perfect happiness, the embodiment of all knowledge" have left out revealing the "Veda Vidya" unto them? The happiness, which man can derive from the possession of the most enjoyable things in the universe, cannot come up even to the thousandth part of that which the possession of knowledge gives. It follows from all this that God is the author of the Vedas, and even this must be believed in.
(Prativadi): - Where did God get pen and ink and other necessary things to write the Vedas with?
(Vadi): ~ We reply: You have certainly brought forward a great objection. Just as God made this world without the help of hands and other parts of the body, and without wood, iron, and the like materials, even so, He revealed the Vedas. You should never have raised the objection you have against an almighty God in reference to the revealing of the Vedas. The Vedas revealed at the beginning of creation were not, however, in the form of books.
(Prativadi): - How, then did God reveal them?
(Vadi): ~ He communicated them through the mind.
(Prativadi): - Through whose mind
(Vadi): ~Through the minds of Agni, Vayu, Aditya and Angiras.
(Prativadi): - All these things are dead and inert, and devoid of reason.
(Vadi): ~ Don't say such a thing. They were corporeal beings "men" at the beginning of creation.
(Prativadi): - How do you make this out?
(Vadi): ~ Because inanimate objects are incapable of thought-work. The sense in which anything is taken in any particular place is according to the context. For instance, if a person were to say to another: "The couches are making a noise, "the word couches" here would be taken mean the "occupiers of couches." Even so. must we interpret (Aditya, etc.) when we speak of them (as the recipients of Veda knowledge). "Knowledge" can be imparted only to rational men. In support of (Aditya, etc., having been men), we have the authority.
To these practisers of austerities the three Vedas were revealed: the Rig Veda was revealed through Agni; the Yajur Veda through Vayu; and the Sama through Surya (Shatapatha, Kand 11 chapter 5)
God communicated the knowledge, termed the Veda, to these men, and through them made it known to all.
(Pravadi) - Your right. But to me, it seems that God gave these persons knowledge, and by means of this knowledge, they produced the Vedas.
(Vadi) ~ Don't believe any such thing. What kind of knowledge did He impart to these men?
(Pravadi) - The knowledge termed "the Veda".
(Vadi) ~ Is this knowledge God's or of the men (to whom it was imparted)?
(Pravadi) - It is God's.
(Vadi) ~ Then who made the Vedas, God or they?
(Pravadi) - He made them whose knowledge the Vedas are.
(Vadi) ~ Then why did you raise the objection that those men made them?
(Pravadi) - To find out the truth. Is God impartial or partial?
(Vadi) ~ Impartial.
(Pravadi) - Then why did He reveal the Vedas to the minds of these four persons only and not the minds of all men?
(Vadi) ~ We reply: God's having imparted His "knowledge" to the minds of these four persons only cannot make Him guilty of the slightest partiality. On the contrary, this is proof positive of the absolute impartiality of that just Being. For impartiality (or Justice) means rewarding everyone according to the merits of his deeds. And thus you must know that it was only these four persons who, in consequence of the consummate excellence and purity of their actions deserved to be imparted the knowledge of the Vedas.
(Pravadi) - The Veda was revealed at the beginning of creation; where did this excellence and purity of their previous actions come from (for as yet they had done no actions)?
(Vadi) ~ We answer: The souls are all eternal in their own essential nature, while their actions, as well as this entire visible universe, are, in consequence of the regularity of their succession, also eternal.
(Pravadi) - Are Gayatri and other Chhandas (metrical texts of the Vedas) also the work of the Divine Mind?
(Vadi) ~ How could a doubt like this spring up in your mind? Has not God the knowledge to produce the Gayatri Chhandas?
(Pravadi) - Certainly He has, for He is all knowledge.
(Vadi) ~ Hence your doubt is groundless.
(Pravadi) - The "four-mouthed" Brahma originated the Vedas, - even so says itihas (history).
(Vadi) ~ Don't say such a thing, for the validity and genuineness of itihas depends on Shabadpraman* and
*That is, the authority of works deduced from the Vedas.
"Shabda" is what an Apta inculcates and teaches (Nyaya Shastra), Chapter 1, aphorism 7th). Even this is what the sage Gautama says. The sage also says that shabda is itihas. On this subject Vatsayana, in the Mahabhashya, says:- �Apta is verily he who has completely and thoroughly realized and felt (in the inmost recesses of this conscious soul) the significance and glory of Dharma (truth, purity, etc.). To realize and fell in practice and sense and meaning of what a teacher has found (a virtuous principle or doctrine) to signify, with the view to make this sense and meaning known to others when the experiment is over, is called Apti, and he whom this quality exist is called Apta.
Hence itihas means what embodies facts and truths, and not falsehood. Consequently, that which has been inculcated and taught by an Apta and is true and worthy of respect, that alone deserves to be received by man (as itihas), and not what which is the opposite of it. For an evil-minded man only says what is false and untrue. Also, the assertion, that Vyas Rishi originated the Vedas is unfounded, because of the worthless character of the Puranas and Tantras which assert such a thing.
(Pravadi) - Why should not we hold that the rishi, whose name heads any particular mantra or sukta, is the originator thereof?
(Vadi) ~Don't say such a thing; for, Brahma and other such sages, too, have studied and been taught the Vedas. Says the Shwetashwatara Upanishad:- OF WHAT IS VEDA THE NAME?
"He creates Brahma at the beginning of creation and preaches the Vedas."
Even when the Rishis (whose names head the mantras and suktas) were not yet in existence, even at that time the Vedas were with Brahma and others:-
"From Agni, Vayu and Aditya the three eternal Vedas" known as Rig, Yaju, and Sama were milked." Manu and:-
"The boy Angiras taught the Vedas to his elders," even so says Manu (Chapter II). When even Brahma read and studied the Vedas with Agni, etc., how could Vyas have originated them?
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(Pravadi) - Now to what is the name Veda applies?
(Vadi) ~ To the mantra bhaga only is our reply.
(Pravadi) - Why do you not, according to the saying of Katya ana, that the name Veda is applicable to the mantras and Brahmanas alike, accept the name Veda for the Brahmana bhag as well?
(Vadi) ~ Don�t say so. The Brahmanas cannot be called the Veda.
(Pravadi) - Why?
(Vadi) ~ Because the Brahmanas are called the Puranas (histories); because they are the expositions of the Vedas; because they are the compositions of the Rishis (sages), and not the Words of God; because the Rishis, Katyayana only excepted, have refused the name Veda, to the Brahmanas and because they are the productions of mortals. The histories of men in which the Brahamanas contain these histories are not to be found in the Vedas.
(Pravadi) - Brother! Texts like:-
Treble the age that is of Jamdagni, the treble the age that is of Kashyapa, the treble the age that is of the sages, even that treble the age be ours, bearing the seal of the names of rishis are to be seen in the Yajurvedada, and in the other Vedas. Then, why do you refuse to give the name Veda to the "Brahmanas" also?
(Vadi) ~ Don't labor under such delusion. Here the words Jamdagni and Kashyapa are not the names of individuals or corporeal beings. On this, there are the authorities:- [Kashyapa is koorma, which means the vital airs the pranas]
Hence koorma and kashyapa are the names of the vital airs (pranas), because of their tortoise-like form in the regions of the navel. With the mantra God alone is worshipped and praised. It means:- "By Thy grace, O Lord, may our eyes (jamdagni) and our pranas (kashyapa), attain treble the usual age "i.e., last for a period of three hundred years."
[The word chakshu (eye) stands here, figuratively, for all the external organs, and the pranas for the internal organs (mind, etc.)]
Yaddeveshu tryayusham on this part of the mantra there is the pramana.
[Even the wise are the devas.]
Hence the wise are called the devas. The meaning:-
"The treble the age which the wise attain to by virtue of their knowledge (tanno astu tryayusham) even that, with the physical organs and the mind, sound and yielding righteous enjoyment, be ours, so that enjoying felicity we may live this treble the age."
[The eye is the Jamdagni rishi because with the eye man sees and understands this world. Hence the eye is the jamdagni rishi.]
Hence the stories which Sanyanacharya and others have related in their commentaries on the Veda should be looked upon as the outcome of delusion. Even this should be looked upon as the outcome of delusion. Even this should be believed.
[After this the Swami proceeds to show, on the authority of Yaska, Panini, Vatsyayana and others that the Vedas are the mantra bhaga only and do not include the Brahmanas, and in conclusion answers the question, "Should the Brahmanas be regarded as authoritative as the Veda?" thus:-]
It is not proper to regard the Brahmanas as authoritative as the Vedas, for the Brahmanas do not come from God. Of course, they are to be regarded authoritative so far as their teaching is in conformity with that of the Vedas. Hence they should be regarded as secondarily or dependently authoritative only.*
The Vedic conception of God.
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(Pravadi) - Are, or are not, all the sciences contained in the Vedas?
(Vadi) ~ The germs or principles of al sciences are to be found in the Vedas. Of these sciences Brahmavidya (the science of theology) is the first and foremost of all sciences. We shall notice it briefly here in the Rig Veda:- "We invoke the protection of Parmeshwara(the Supreme Being), who is the Maker of the whole universe, the Lord and Master of the stationary and the moving, and the illuminator of the intellect. He bestows strength and energy upon all and is our support. O Lord! Thou are the increaser of knowledge, wealth, prosperity, etc. Do thou, in Thy mercy, guard and sustain us."
"He who is the most exalted of all, who is worthy of being adored by all, who pervades the entire universe, the Omniscient Being, who supports the firmament, who survives the dissolution of the world into its primary atoms even He is Brahm. The vasus and other devatas (i.e., the entire universe) are supported by Him, even as trunk supports the spreading boughs" (Atharva, Book 10th, Chapter 23, mantra 38.)
*. Translated from the Sanskrit of Swami Dayanand. In this chapter, while showing that the Brahmanas are not identical with the Vedas, the Swami takes occasion to refute the assertion that the Bhagawat, etc., the modern mythological literature, are the Puranas, the Brahmanas and similar Arsha granths alone being the real Puranas." C.S
"There is only the One Supreme Being - there is neither second, nor third, nor fourth, nor fifth, nor sixth, nor seventh, nor eighth, nor ninth, nor yet tenth Deity." (Athrva,Kand 13, chapter 4, Mantras, 16, 18 and 20 � 21)From these mantras it is clear that God is one and that there no other besides Him not second god, no third god, no fourth god, no fifth God, no sixth god, no seventh god, no eighth god, no ninth god, neither any tenth god. By means of these nine negatives, commencing from the figure "2" and carrying the calculation up to the knot the existence of God has been declared, and the existence of a God other than Him has been utterly denied. For this reason the worship of aught else than one God had been totally condemned.
"He, the Supreme Being, pervades the entire universe even as space. He is on infinite might and the creator of all. He is incorporeal and exempt from birth and death. He is indivisible and impenetrable by the minutest conceivable object. He is free from the bonds of nerves and muscles. He is wholly absolutely above ignorance. He is free from sin and every sinful desire. He is omniscient and privy to our thoughts. He presides over all, is self-existent and the efficient cause of the universe. He imparts His knowledge of His eternal subjects at the beginning of every creation." (Yajurveda, Chapter XL, mantra 8.) The Vedic Dharma
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The Vedic teaching in reference to Dharma shall be set forth briefly. The Supreme Being declares in the Rig Veda:
"(Sangachhadhwam)" O morals! The dharma which has been declared by Me, which is characterized by justice, is devoid of partiality, which is distinguished for its true qualities, - even this dharma do ye accept and embrace. (Samvadadhwam) in other words, having given up all mutual differences and disliking for the acquisition of this dharma, do ye be united with the other, to the end that your true joys may ever be on the increase, and your pain and suffering may be destroyed. (Samvo manansi janatam). Being united with each other had having given up idle and fruitless
controversies and disputations, do ye discuss among yourselves, in all love and charity, (on subjects affecting your welfare) by the agency of questions and answers, so that (by means of such discussions) true knowledge may go n steadily increasing among you, in the most commendable manner.
"Do ye develop your thinking faculty, do ye exert yourselves in the most befitting manner, to the end that your minds may become affluent in knowledge. Or, which is one and the same thing, ye should make such a use of your energy and resources that it may fill your minds with a sense of joyful tranquility and peace. Ye should always follow and act up to the dictates of dharma, and not to those of that which constitutes adharma (ignorance)."
"In connection with this an illustration shall be given: (Deva bhagam yatha, etc.) As your predecessors, having became men of exalted knowledge before you, are doing their work in life, or have quitted the word's stage; - just as they worship the Being who possesses the attributes of omnipotence, etc., and just as they follow and act up to the dharma declared by me, even like them does it behove you to conform your lives to the same dharma, to the end that the dharma declared by the Veda may become known (to all)."
"(Samano mantrah, etc.) O mortals! Let your mantra [that exercise of the intellectual faculties through which, by the agency of speech or preaching, a knowledge of all objects with their powers and properties, manifest or latent of all objects from me, the Creator, down to the earth is acquired] be alike, equally weighty, and free from all antagonism. When many people getting together would deliberate over matters in respect of which there are doubts, the individual opinions all that is best and essential, calculated to promote the well-being of all sentient beings and distinguished for its absolute truthfulness, that should be chosen and thoroughly known, - to be laid up in the mind to regulate each unit's practical life, to the end that it may make him happier day by day.
"(Samitih samani)" Let yoru social code or maryada [that which inculcates justice, which gives importance and knowledge to man, which renders the observance of brahmacharya, the acquisition of learning and sciences and the attainment of good qualities possible, which provides, through legislative bodies, for good government and so forth, which guides aright one's temporal and spiritual affairs, which increases the strength and health of body and mind even that constitutes social code or maryada be good and the same: in other words, it should be perfectly uniform, to the end that it may add to the happiness of all by bestowing upon them the blessings of liberty and independence. (Samanam mahah) Let your minds be free from mutual antagonism and harmonious. Let your chitta (the power which recollects things done in the past and meditates
on the Creator] be the same. In other words, ye should exert yourselves for the destruction of the pain of all sentient beings and for the augmentation of their happiness.
(Sah, etc.) Ye must exert yourselves to the utmost to do good and to be useful to all.
(Esham etc.,) Those of you who, in their dealings with all sentient beings, care for their welfare as they would do for the welfare of their own souls, unto them the benevolent and the augmenters of the happiness of others, I am gracious and
(abhimantriye vah etc.,). I desire you all to follow the dharma already declared. Even so, should all of you do to the end that truth may never become extinct among you nor untruth prosper?
(Samanena vo) The gifts that ye receive from others, and those that ye present them with - these also must be regulated according to the behest of dharma. Hence I unite you each with the other by a universal dharma, and therefore, the dharma that has been declared by Me, even that ye should observe and follow, and naught else than that.
O mortals, the energy and strength that is in you, the same in its fullness, having been made amenable to dharma and mutually harmonious and concordant, do ye employ in promoting the general well-being.
"(Samani va" etc.) Let your enthusiasm and your good and righteous ways, by virtue of advancing the weal of each other, contribute to the happiness of all. In whatever way the dharma preached by Me be preserved from extinction even so should ye proceed.
(Samana hridyana vah) Let all those actions of yours which are connected with the heart, this is which have to do with the mind, be characterized with profound love, calculated to bring about and establish harmony and concordant and harmonious.
(Samananmastu vo manah). Let the mind, which is distinguished by the possession of all these things, be harmonious in all."
'(Yatha vah susahansati, etc.) O mortals! Ye should so proceed and exert yourselves that your actions, assisting mutual co-operation may contribute to the well-being of all, and ye should seek your own happiness in the happiness of others. Ye must not by joyful when others are unhappy; on the contrary, ye must act as to enable everyone to be independent and happy."
"(Drishtva, etc. Prajapath, the Supreme Being, declares the Dhaama: all men should ever have perfect faith in truth and disbelief in untruth.
(Prajapatih styanrite rupe, etc.) The Lord, by means of his omniscience, differentiated Truth from Falsehood or Virtue from non-Virtue, each distinguished by its attributes hidden and manifest. How? To this is the answer; He planted in the constitution and nature of all men an abhorrence of Untruth, non-Virtue, and Injustice; In other words, - He enjoined disbelief in adharma
(non-virtue). Similarly, the all-knowing Prajapatih, the Supreme Being, enjoined belief in truth se forth in the Shastras, and in Justice and Virtue, tested and proved by ocular demonstration and so forth, and free from all tinge of bigotry and prejudice. Hence, it behooves all men to keep their minds firmly fixed on dharma and totally estranged from adharma."
"(Drite Drinha, etc.) All men should deal kindly and affectionately by one another, in every possible way and on all occasions. All men should accept and follow the dharma (system of faith) declared by the Lord, and to Him, they should ever pray, so that they may learn to love dharma. O Lord, the destroyer of pain in all its phases, have mercy on me, to the end that I may know the true faith.
(Mitrasya, etc.) With their minds free from all prejudice, and with hearts pure, let all men see in me a friend; in other words, let them retard me as their friend.
(Drinha, etc) With my mind filled with this laudable desire, make me constantly richer and richer in truth and in exalted qualities.
(Mitrasyaham, etc.) Similarly, may I, O Lord, with my understanding permeated with love and the eye of a friend (sarvani bhutani, etc.) see all sentient beings rightly and well.
(Mitrasya chakshusha, etc) Even so may we all see each other with the eye of a friend, free from ill-will, and so conduct ourselves one with the other, that it may lead to the furtherance of mutual good."
Let us all practice tapa. Tapa means:-
"To worship Brahma only, and to acquire true knowledge; to speak truth and act truthfully; to hear and preach true knowledge; to prevent the mind from doing evil, and to set it to the performance of duty; to employ the organs and senses in Dharma, and to prevent them from taking a wrong course; to control the mind and to make it intent upon Dharma, to disseminate true knowledge under all circumstances."
"Also, O man, thou shouldst worship and believe the omnipresent, all-pervading Brahma only and naught else. To speak the truth and to act truthfully is the most essential condition of Dharma because it is the truth only through which man obtains happiness and Moksha and through which he never falls from the pedestal. All men should, therefore, practice righteousness. They should practice Dharma as directed (in the mantra commencing with rita). Similarly, they should acquire knowledge by observing Brahmacharya and should employ their wealth in disseminating knowledge and other virtues. Contemplation is the characteristic of the wise and learned. The wind blows through satya (truth). The sun shines through satya. Men are respected for righteousness and satya.
The wise know God by purifying their mental faculties and thus do they acquire happiness.
The following further injunctions may be given in this connection from the Taittiriya Aranyaka:-
"Men should acquire knowledge and continue the study of the Vedas and other Shastras; they should speak the truth, believe in truth and study the Vedas, etc.; they should observe Brahmacharya; they should keep their organs and passions under control; they should always keep the mind and soul intent upon the performance of Dharma (virtuous deeds); they should acquire Dharma; Artha, Kama and Moksha through the help of the Vedas, fire, etc.; they should perform Agnihotra daily and thus purify air, water, etc., should honor and serve wise men who may happen to visit them, should manage human affairs properly, should educate their children and subjects well, should beget children by paying due regard to bodily strength, and should pay due attention to the health of children."
[The frequent occurrence of the word Swadhyaya pravachane in the different parts of the above passage is to show that the study of the Vedas is incumbent under all the twelve kinds of circumstances.]
[Rathitaracharya is of opinion that the practice of truth and study of Vedas alone constitute Dharma. Paurusheshti holds the observance of Brahmacharya and the study of the Vedas as the only Dharma. Maudgalya alias Nak gives preference to the study of the Vedas.]
The acharya, teaching the Vedas, should instruct his pupils as below during the course of, and after the completion of, instruction, _
"Speak the truth; observe Dharma and attend to the dictates of Duty."
"Do not neglect the study of Vedas, etc. After having pleased your teacher with valuable gifts, take to grihastha and beget children. You should never disregard Dharma, should always strive to better yourself, should never give up righteous ambition, should never be lazy in the study of the Vedas, should never give up Deva Kriyas and Pitri Kriyas, i.e., should always perform the duty towards the wise and the elders.
"Worship your mother, father and the atithis.
"You should do only good actions and not other than these. You should imitate only such of our actions as are good and not those that are otherwise. those that are virtuous amongst us are Brahmans, then you should trust. You should give them things as best you can, you should give them presents out of respect or shame, fear, or promise.
"If you have any doubts about my actions, you should do as wise and virtuous Brahmans do in similar circumstances, - you should
act according to the dictates of wise and virtuous Brahmans. This is the advice, this is the exhortation, this is the injunction of the Vedas, these are the instructions they embody. You should observe these and obey these."
"God can be known through truth, righteousness, Brahmacharya, and knowledge. He the Fountain-head of light and wisdom is visible within themselves to sages whose passions are completely under subjection and who are free from vice.
"Victory is always to truthfulness. If true, a man always comes off triumphant, but if not true and not a follower of true Dharma, defeat is his fate. (The wise man's path of eternal bliss and Moksha, is so called because of its truthfulness.) It is by that path of truth and virtue that the sages attain to their object and reach Brahma, the Fountain-head of truth and Dharma, and reaching Him acquire eternal bliss and Moksha, and not otherwise.
"All men should, therefore, follow true Dharma and avoid untruth and adharma. (chodana) The Dharma taught by the Vedas is the only true Dharma as it is free from untruth and unrighteousness, and deserving of being termed Dharma. That prohibited by God and deserving of being termed Dharma. That prohibited by God should be considered improper and shunned by all men as adharma.
"(Yatobhyu) Dharma is that the observance of which grants worldly happiness and Moksha, and that which does not fulfill these conditions is adharma. This also is the teaching of the Vedas.
"God has taught Dharma to all mankind in many other similar mantras in the Vedas. All men should understand that this is their only Dharma, and none else."
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"The man who resolves, to stick to the truth at
all costs, steadily rises in virtues. When his virtues raise his reputation
and prestige, he becomes all the more a devotee of truth. This devotion to
truth becomes an unerring source of power and greatness." Swami Dayanand
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