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The Upanishads, Part 1 (SBE01), by Max Müller, [1879], at


1. This (nishkevalya-sastra) becomes perfect as a thousand of Brihatî verses.

2. Some teachers (belonging to a different Sâkhâ) recognise a thousand of different metres (not of Brihatîs only). They say: 'Is another thousand (a thousand of other verses) good? Let us say it is good.'

3. Some say, a thousand of Trishtubh verses, others a thousand of Gagatî verses, others a thousand of Anushtubh verses.

4. This has been said by a Rishi (Rv. X, 124, 9):--

5. 'Poets through their understanding discovered Indra dancing an Anushtubh.' This is meant to say: They discovered (and meditated) in speech (called Anushtubh)--at that time (when they worshipped

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the uktha)--the Prâna (breath) connected with Indra.

6. He (who takes the recited verses as Anushtubhs) is able to become celebrated and of good report.

7. No! he says; rather is such a man liable to die before his time. For that self (consisting of Anushtubhs) is incomplete. For if a man confines himself to speech, not to breath, then driven by his mind, he does not succeed with speech 1.

8. Let him work towards the Brihatî, for the Brihatî (breath) is the complete self.

9. That self (gîvâtman) is surrounded on all sides by members. And as that self is on all sides surrounded by members, the Brihatî also is on all sides surrounded by metres 2.

10. For the self (in the heart) is the middle of these members, and the Brihatî is the middle of the metres.

11. 'He is able to become celebrated and of good

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report, but (the other) able to die before his time,' thus he said. For the Brihatî is the complete self, therefore let him work towards the Brihatî (let him reckon the sastra recitation as a thousand Brihatîs).


228:1 This passage is obscure, and probably corrupt. I have followed the commentator as much as possible. He says: 'If the Hotri priest proceeds with reciting the sastra, looking to the Anushtubh, which is speech, and not to the thousand of Brihatîs which are breath, then, neglecting the Brihatî (breath), and driven by his mind to the Anushtubh (speech), he does not by his speech obtain that sastra. For in speech without breath the Hotri cannot, through the mere wish of the mind, say the sastra, the activity of all the senses being dependent on breath.' The commentator therefore takes vâgabhi for vâkam abhi, or for some old locative case formed by abhi. He also would seem to have read prâne na. One might attempt another construction, though it is very doubtful. One might translate, 'For that self, which is speech, is incomplete, because he understands if driven to the mind by breath, not (if driven) by speech.'

228:2 Either in the sastra, or in the list of metres, there being some that have more, others that have less syllables.

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