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THE BRIHADARANYAKA UPANISHAD
THE BRIHADARANYAKA UPANISHAD
Description

About the Book:

 

Worshipful H.H. Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj could see through the publication of his translation and commentary on the eight Upanishads, --Isa, Kena, Katha, Prasna, Mundaka, Mandukya, Taittiriya, Aitareya,-- during his physical presence in this world. But as an ardent and devout follower of ancient tradition, he was also aware and was particular that the major Upanishads, which form the philosophical foundation of spiritual culture, ten in number, should all be presented and brought out for the benefit of seekers of Truth. For various reasons, it did not become possible to bring out the remaining two Upanishads, viz., the Brihadaranyaka and the Chhandogya, the largest ones among the whole group; and Sri Gurudev did, once or twice, hint at the Management of the divine Life Society about the necessity to bring out the Commentaries on the remaining two Upanishads also. The circumstances at that time were somehow such that this publication did not see the light of day during his lifetime. But his disciples and devotees were acutely conscious of the wish of the great Master, which they ere eager to fulfil at the earliest available opportunity.

Thus, we release this pleasant and stimulating surprise to the public, this large edition of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad; - may we call it a magnum opus - with the original Sanskrit text and an English translation of the same, together with an elaborate expository commentary. The first edition of this book was published in the year 1985. As there is consistent demand from the reading public, we are bringing out this edition

The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad is the most detailed and magnificent revelation of the ancient philosopher- seers, which, in its six chapters packed with thought and revelation, provides to the students a practically exhaustive and concentrated teaching on every aspect of life, making it an indispensable guidebook to the student of literature as well as the philosopher, the religious devotee, and the mystical and spiritual seeker engaged in meditation for divine realisation. -----THE DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY

About the Author:

Born on the 8th September, 1887, in the illustrious family of Saga Appayya Diskhita and several other renowned saints and savants, Sri Swami Sivananda had a natural flair for a life devoted to the study and practice of Vedanta. Added to this was an inborn eagerness to serve all and an innate feeling of unity with all mankind.

His passion for service drew him to the medical career; and soon he gravitated to where he thought that his service was most needed. Malaya claimed him. He had earlier been editing a Health Journal and wrote extensively on health problems. He discovered that people needed right knowledge most of all; dissemination of that knowledge he espoused as his own mission.

It was divine dispensation and the blessing of God upon mankind that the doctor of body and mind renounced his career and took to a life of renunciation to qualify himself for ministering to the soul of man. He settled down at Rishikesh in 1924, practiced intense austerities and shone as a great Yogi, Saint, Sage and Jivanmukta.

In 1932 he started the Sivanandashram. In 1936 was born The Divine Life Society. In 1948 the Yoga-Vedanta Forest Academy was organized. Dissemination of spiritual knowledge and training of people in Yoga and Vedanta were their aim and object. In 1950 he undertook a lightning tour of India and Ceylon. In 1953 he convened a 'World Parliament Reliogions'. He is the author of over 300 volumes and has disciples all over the world, belonging to all nationalities, religions and creeds. To read his works is to drink at the fountain of Wisdom Supreme. On 14th July, 1963 he entered Mahasamadhi.

Introduction

The holy corpus of the Veda, which is the repository of eternal knowledge and wisdom, is divided into four Books, known as Rigveda, Yajurveda, Samaveda and Atharvaveda. In each of the four Vedas a distinction has been made according to content and form: (1) Samhita; (2) Brahmana; (3) Aranyaka; (4) Upanishad.

The Samhita is a collection of hymns or prayers to God in various Manifestations, containing also formulae necessary in the sacrificial use of these hymns, known as Mantras. On a practical basis, the Samhita is to be considered as the chief Veda, and it is the Samhita that people have in their minds mostly when they refer to the Vedas, the study of the Vedas, the greatness of the Vedas, or holding the Vedas as the foundation of India's spiritual and religious outlook of life. The Mantras are addressed to divinities, Devas, as the infinite forms of the Supreme Being, these forms of divinities being regarded as the gradational accessible approaches to the Creator by the corresponding levels of evolution and comprehension of the worshipper, the devotee, or the seeker.

The word 'Samhita' means a collection of the Mantras belonging to a particular section of the Veda, which are either in metrical verses (Rik) or sentences in prose (Yajus) or chants (Sama). The Rigveda Samhita Samhita consists of 10580 Mantras or metrical verses; the Samaveda Samhita contains 1549 verses (with certain repetitions the number is 1810) many of which are culled from the Rigveda Samhita. The Sama hymns are modulated in numerous ways for the purpose of singing during either prayer or sacrifice. The Yajurveda Samhita consists of two recensions known as the Krishna (black) and the Shukla (white), and consists of prose sentences and long verses, The Atharvaveda Samhita, while it is included among the four sections of the Veda, is generally not studied as a prayer book and is used only during certain specific forms of sacrifice and also for incantations of different kinds to receive benefits to the reciter, both material and spiritual.

The Brahmanas teach the practical use of the verses and the chants presented in the Samhitas. However, the Brahmanas, though they are supposed to be only sacrificial injunctions for purpose of ritualistic utilization of the Mantras of the Samhita, go beyond this restricted definition and contain much more material, such as Vidhi (a directive precept), Arthavada (laudatory or eulogising explanation), and Upanishad (the philosophical or mystical import of the chant or the performance).

The Aranyakas are esoteric considerations of the practical ritual, which is otherwise the main subject of the Brahmana. The opening passage of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, in which the horse-sacrifice is treated as a symbol, would serve as an example of how a ritualistic symbol and material is used as a cosmological concept for purpose of religious contemplation and philosophic meditation. The Panchagni-Vidya of the Chhandogya Upanishad may also be cited as an illustration of a cosmological or astronomical and physical event being taken as a spiritualised symbol for mystical contemplation.

The Upanishads, except the Isavasya, which occurs in the Samhita portion of the Yajurveda, occur as the concluding mystical import and philosophical suggestiveness of some Brahmana or the other. The philosophical sections of the Brahmanas and Aranyakas are usually detached, for the purpose of study, and go by the name of Upanishads, brought together from the different Vedas to form a single whole, though it appears that originally each school of the Veda had its own specialized ritual textbook with an exegesis or practical manual. The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad belongs to the Shukla-Yajurveda group and is the most elaborate of them all, touching on almost every issue relevant to human life, and rising to such heights of philosophic genius as may rightly be considered as the greatest achievement of the human mind in history.

There is also a tradition that the Brahmacharin, or the celibate student (which is the first part of the dedication of human life), occupies himself with a study of the Samhita; the Grihastha, or the householder (which is the second part of the dedication of life) is expected to diligently perform the rituals detailed in the Brahmanas in relation to their corresponding Mantras from the Samhitas. The Vanaprastha, or the recluse, the hermit (the third part of the dedication of life) rises above prayer as a chant and performance as a ritual, and busies himself with pure inward contemplation of the more philosophical and abstract realities hidden behind the outward concepts of divinity and the external performances of ritual. The Sannyasin, or the spiritually illumined renunciate (the fourth and concluding part of the dedicated life) occupies himself with direct meditations as prescribed in the Upanishads, whose outlook of life transcends all empirical forms, outward relations, nay, space and time itself.

Among the ten Upanishads, the Isa, Kena, Katha, Prasna and Mundaka may be regarded as more introductory, providing preliminary details of a more or less preparatory nature in the understanding of the great truths of the universe. The Kathopanishad, with its musical tone, literary excellence and homely message of the value spiritual, should, indeed, form a fitting text for the beginner in the study of the Upanishads. It is sometimes held that the Brihadaranyaka is a vast commentary on the suggestions made in the Isa Upanishad, while the Brihadaranyaka has a certain internal connection with the precise adoration of the Almighty sung in the Purusha-Sukta of the Samhita. The Mundaka also serves as a good introduction.

But it is the Brihadaranyaka, Chhandogya, Aitareya, Taittiriya and Mandukya, that rise above the level of ordinary instruction and stand as most exalted specimens of a direct encounter with Reality. The Brihadaranyaka is like an omnibus, where anything can be found anywhere. The Chhandogya is more realistic form, and, while it covers a very wide range of subjects like the Brihadaranyaka itself, is characteristically different in make, and presents itself as being more intimate with the hearth and the home and the more concrete values capable of easy comprehension. The Aitareya is the story of creation, cosmology. The Taittiriya is many-sided, but its main issues as psychological, explaining the composition of the individual, thus forming, together with the Aitareya, a practical text on the story of creation. The Mandukya Upanishad is very brief and seems to sum up the intentions of all the Upanishads in just twelve Mantras, dealing, as it does, with the structure of levels of reality as indicated in the stages of consciousness, namely, waking, dream and sleep, suggesting thereby the presence of a Transcendent Universal, timeless and eternal.

The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad is a veritable research reservoir and may be taken up for intensive study by those who are pure in heart, sincere in their aspirations, and wholly devoted to a Godly life.

 

Preface

Worshipful H.H. Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj could see through the publication of his translation and commentary on the eight Upanishads, - Isa, Kena, Katha, Prasna, Mundaka, Mandukya, Taittiriya, Aitareya, - during his physical presence in this world. But as an ardent and devout follower of ancient tradition, he was also aware and was particular that the major Upanishads, which form the philosophical foundation of spiritual culture, ten in number, should all be presented and brought out for the benefit of seekers of Truth. For various reasons, it did not become possible to bring out the remaining two Upanishads, viz., the Brihadaranyaka and the Chhandogya, the largest ones among the whole group; and Sri Gurudev did, once or twice, hint at the Management of the Divine Life Society about the necessity to bring out the Commentaries on the remaining two Upanishads also. The circumstances at that time were somehow such that this publication did not see the light of day during his lifetime. But his disciples' and devotees were acutely conscious of the wish of the great Master, which they were eager to fulfil at the earliest available opportunity.

Thus, we release this pleasant and stimulating surprise to the public, this large edition of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad,-may we call it a magnum opus-with the original Sanskrit text and an English translation of the same, together with an elaborate expository commentary. The first edition of this book was published in the year 1985. As there is consistent demand from the reading public, we are bringing out this edition.

The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad is the most detailed and magnificent revelation of the ancient philosopher-seers, which, in its six chapters packed with thought and revelation, provides to the students a practically exhaustive and concentrated teaching on every aspect of life, making it an indispensable guidebook to the student of literature as well as the philosopher, the religious devotee, and the mystical and spiritual seeker engaged in meditation for divine realisation.

 

CONTENTS

 

Gayatri-Brahmana
Meditation on the Four Feet of the
Gayatri Mantra

Preface   v
Introduction   vii
MADHU-KANDA
 
Santi Mantra   1
CHAPTER I
 
Section i Asvamedha-Brahmana
Meditation on the Sacrificial Horse as
the Cosmic Person, Hiranyagarbha
3
Section ii Agni-Brahmana
Creation and Evolution of the Universe
-The Concepts of Death and Sacrifice
11
Section iii Udgitha-Brahmana
Meditation on the Vital Force - Allegory
of the Warfare between the Celestials
and the Demons
30
Section iv Purushavidha-Brahmana
The Saga of Creation
58
Section v Saptanna-Brahmana
Meditation on the Seven Forms of Food, the Objects of Desires, Manifestations of
the Supreme
93
Section vi Uktha-Brahmana
Meditation on the Names, Forms and
Actions as the Manifestations of
Hiranyagarbha
132
CHAPTER II
 
Section i Ajatasatru-Brahmana
Meditation on the Lower and Higher
Levels of Consciousness
138
Section ii Sisu-Brahmana
Meditation Prana- Analogy of the
New-born Calf
165
Section iii Murta-Amurta-Brahmana
Meditation on the Gross and Subtle
Manifestations of Reality
175
Section iv Maitreyi-Brahmana
Instruction on the Supreme by Sage
Yajnavalkya to his Wife Maitreyi - All
Love rooted in the Self- The Universe
is Non-different from the Self before its
Manifestation, during its Existence and
after its Disappearance
188
Section v Madhu-Brahmana
Mutual Relationship of Everything with
Everything contained in the First Two
Chapters
247
YAJNAVALKYA-KANDA
 
CHAPTER III
 
Section i Asvala-Brahmana
How to overcome the Defects in the
Sacrificial Rites and their Results-
Meditation combined with Rituals, the
Means
252
Section ii Artabhaga-Brahmana
The Senses and Their Objects - The
Supreme Being as Death of Death
271
Section iii Bhujyu-Brahmana
The Goal of Performing the Horse
Sacrifice -Some Hints on Cosmic
Geography
286
Section iv Ushasta-Brahmana
Brahman, The Supreme -Direct and
Immediate - Unknowable through the
Individual Intellect
293
Section v Kahola-Brahmana
Renunciation, the Means of Liberation -
The Three Kinds of Desires - Balya,
Panditya and Mauna
300
Section vi Gargi-Brahmana
Meditation on the Conditioned Brahman
308
Section vii Antaryami-Brahmana
Meditation on the Inner Controller
313
Section viii Akshara-Brahmana
Meditation on the Supreme
Unconditioned Brahman
325
Section ix Sakalya-Brahmana
The Number of Gods- Meditation on
the Eight Persons and Their
Corresponding Deites- Meditation on
the Five Directions with Their Deities
and Supports -Meditation on the
Essence of the Vital Force- Comparison
of Man with a Tree -Source of Rebirth
or Creation Established as the Supreme
Brahman.
345
CHAPTER IV
 
Section i Shadacarya-Brahmana
Defects of the Meditation on Parts-
Instruction on the Meditation on the
Whole
373
Section ii Kurcha-Brahmana
A Short Analytical Study of the Three
States of Waking, Dreaming and Deep
Sleep
386
Section iii Jyotir-Brahmana
Meditation on The Supreme as The
Light of Lights-Further Detailed
Analysis of the States of Waking, Dream
and Deep Sleep
397
Section iv Saririka-Brahmana
What becomes of the Ignorant Jiva, and
of the Knower of Brahman, after the
Fall of the Body
431
Section v Maitreyi-Brahmana
A Restatement of Section iv of Chapter II
461
Section vi Vamsa-Brahmana
Line of Teachers and Disciples for the
Knowledge in Chapter IIIrd and IV
472

KHILA-KANDA
 
CHAPTER V
 
Section i Om Kham Brahma-Brahmana
Meditation on Brahman as The Whole,
The Plenum
475
Section ii Prajapatya-Brahmana
Prajapati's Instruction to Celestials,
Demons and Men - Three Main Virtues
of Self-control, Compassion and Charity
479
Section iii Hridaya-Brahmana
Meditation on the Heart as Brahmana
482
Section iv Satya-Brahmana
Meditation on Truth as Brahman
485
Section v Satya-Brahman-Samasthana-Brahamana
Meditation on the Three Syllables of the
Word 'Satya'- Meditation on the Sun
and on the Right Eye
487
Section vi Manomaya-Brahmana
Meditation on the Cosmic Mind and the
Individual Mind as Brahman
492
Section vii Vidyut-Brahmana
Meditation on the Lightning as Brahman
494
Section viii Vagdhenu-Brahmana
Meditation with the help of the Symbol
of Cow for the Veda
495
Section ix Vaisvanaragni-Brahmana
Meditation on the Universal Prana in
the Meditator
496
Section x Gati-Brahmana
The Course of the Soul After Death-
The Gradual Ascent of the Soul in
Krama-Mukti, Gradual Liberation
497
Section xi Vyahita-Brahmana
Meditation on Illness, Death etc., as
Supreme Austerities
499
Section xii Pratrida-Brahmana
Meditation based on the Correlation
Between Matter and Energy
501
Section xiii Uktha-Brahmana
Meditation on the Identity of Prana with
Uktha, Yajus, Saman and Kshatra
503
Section xiv 506
Section xv Suryagni Prarthana-Brahmana
prayer of the Sun God and Fire God at
the Time of Death
515
CHAPTER VI
 
Section i Prana Samvada-Brahmana
Meditation on the Vital Force-Story of
the Conversation between the Organs
and the Chief Vital Force
519
Section ii Karma-Vipaka-Brahmana
Meditation on the Five Fires - Story of
Svetaketu and King Pravahana
530
Section iii Srimantha-Brahmana
Ritual-cum-Meditation for Attaining
Prosperity
548
Section iv Putramantha-Brahmana
Ritual-cum-Meditation for Attaining
Progeny
555
Section v Vamsa-Brahmana
The Line of Teachers and Disciples for
the Knowledge contained in Chapters V
and VI, and the Whole Upanishad
565
Santi Mantra   567
Appendices   568

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THE BRIHADARANYAKA UPANISHAD

Item Code:
IDG071
Cover:
Hardcover
Edition:
2002
Language:
English
Size:
8.9" X 5.9"
Pages:
574
Other Details:
Weight of the Book: 695 gms
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About the Book:

 

Worshipful H.H. Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj could see through the publication of his translation and commentary on the eight Upanishads, --Isa, Kena, Katha, Prasna, Mundaka, Mandukya, Taittiriya, Aitareya,-- during his physical presence in this world. But as an ardent and devout follower of ancient tradition, he was also aware and was particular that the major Upanishads, which form the philosophical foundation of spiritual culture, ten in number, should all be presented and brought out for the benefit of seekers of Truth. For various reasons, it did not become possible to bring out the remaining two Upanishads, viz., the Brihadaranyaka and the Chhandogya, the largest ones among the whole group; and Sri Gurudev did, once or twice, hint at the Management of the divine Life Society about the necessity to bring out the Commentaries on the remaining two Upanishads also. The circumstances at that time were somehow such that this publication did not see the light of day during his lifetime. But his disciples and devotees were acutely conscious of the wish of the great Master, which they ere eager to fulfil at the earliest available opportunity.

Thus, we release this pleasant and stimulating surprise to the public, this large edition of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad; - may we call it a magnum opus - with the original Sanskrit text and an English translation of the same, together with an elaborate expository commentary. The first edition of this book was published in the year 1985. As there is consistent demand from the reading public, we are bringing out this edition

The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad is the most detailed and magnificent revelation of the ancient philosopher- seers, which, in its six chapters packed with thought and revelation, provides to the students a practically exhaustive and concentrated teaching on every aspect of life, making it an indispensable guidebook to the student of literature as well as the philosopher, the religious devotee, and the mystical and spiritual seeker engaged in meditation for divine realisation. -----THE DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY

About the Author:

Born on the 8th September, 1887, in the illustrious family of Saga Appayya Diskhita and several other renowned saints and savants, Sri Swami Sivananda had a natural flair for a life devoted to the study and practice of Vedanta. Added to this was an inborn eagerness to serve all and an innate feeling of unity with all mankind.

His passion for service drew him to the medical career; and soon he gravitated to where he thought that his service was most needed. Malaya claimed him. He had earlier been editing a Health Journal and wrote extensively on health problems. He discovered that people needed right knowledge most of all; dissemination of that knowledge he espoused as his own mission.

It was divine dispensation and the blessing of God upon mankind that the doctor of body and mind renounced his career and took to a life of renunciation to qualify himself for ministering to the soul of man. He settled down at Rishikesh in 1924, practiced intense austerities and shone as a great Yogi, Saint, Sage and Jivanmukta.

In 1932 he started the Sivanandashram. In 1936 was born The Divine Life Society. In 1948 the Yoga-Vedanta Forest Academy was organized. Dissemination of spiritual knowledge and training of people in Yoga and Vedanta were their aim and object. In 1950 he undertook a lightning tour of India and Ceylon. In 1953 he convened a 'World Parliament Reliogions'. He is the author of over 300 volumes and has disciples all over the world, belonging to all nationalities, religions and creeds. To read his works is to drink at the fountain of Wisdom Supreme. On 14th July, 1963 he entered Mahasamadhi.

Introduction

The holy corpus of the Veda, which is the repository of eternal knowledge and wisdom, is divided into four Books, known as Rigveda, Yajurveda, Samaveda and Atharvaveda. In each of the four Vedas a distinction has been made according to content and form: (1) Samhita; (2) Brahmana; (3) Aranyaka; (4) Upanishad.

The Samhita is a collection of hymns or prayers to God in various Manifestations, containing also formulae necessary in the sacrificial use of these hymns, known as Mantras. On a practical basis, the Samhita is to be considered as the chief Veda, and it is the Samhita that people have in their minds mostly when they refer to the Vedas, the study of the Vedas, the greatness of the Vedas, or holding the Vedas as the foundation of India's spiritual and religious outlook of life. The Mantras are addressed to divinities, Devas, as the infinite forms of the Supreme Being, these forms of divinities being regarded as the gradational accessible approaches to the Creator by the corresponding levels of evolution and comprehension of the worshipper, the devotee, or the seeker.

The word 'Samhita' means a collection of the Mantras belonging to a particular section of the Veda, which are either in metrical verses (Rik) or sentences in prose (Yajus) or chants (Sama). The Rigveda Samhita Samhita consists of 10580 Mantras or metrical verses; the Samaveda Samhita contains 1549 verses (with certain repetitions the number is 1810) many of which are culled from the Rigveda Samhita. The Sama hymns are modulated in numerous ways for the purpose of singing during either prayer or sacrifice. The Yajurveda Samhita consists of two recensions known as the Krishna (black) and the Shukla (white), and consists of prose sentences and long verses, The Atharvaveda Samhita, while it is included among the four sections of the Veda, is generally not studied as a prayer book and is used only during certain specific forms of sacrifice and also for incantations of different kinds to receive benefits to the reciter, both material and spiritual.

The Brahmanas teach the practical use of the verses and the chants presented in the Samhitas. However, the Brahmanas, though they are supposed to be only sacrificial injunctions for purpose of ritualistic utilization of the Mantras of the Samhita, go beyond this restricted definition and contain much more material, such as Vidhi (a directive precept), Arthavada (laudatory or eulogising explanation), and Upanishad (the philosophical or mystical import of the chant or the performance).

The Aranyakas are esoteric considerations of the practical ritual, which is otherwise the main subject of the Brahmana. The opening passage of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, in which the horse-sacrifice is treated as a symbol, would serve as an example of how a ritualistic symbol and material is used as a cosmological concept for purpose of religious contemplation and philosophic meditation. The Panchagni-Vidya of the Chhandogya Upanishad may also be cited as an illustration of a cosmological or astronomical and physical event being taken as a spiritualised symbol for mystical contemplation.

The Upanishads, except the Isavasya, which occurs in the Samhita portion of the Yajurveda, occur as the concluding mystical import and philosophical suggestiveness of some Brahmana or the other. The philosophical sections of the Brahmanas and Aranyakas are usually detached, for the purpose of study, and go by the name of Upanishads, brought together from the different Vedas to form a single whole, though it appears that originally each school of the Veda had its own specialized ritual textbook with an exegesis or practical manual. The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad belongs to the Shukla-Yajurveda group and is the most elaborate of them all, touching on almost every issue relevant to human life, and rising to such heights of philosophic genius as may rightly be considered as the greatest achievement of the human mind in history.

There is also a tradition that the Brahmacharin, or the celibate student (which is the first part of the dedication of human life), occupies himself with a study of the Samhita; the Grihastha, or the householder (which is the second part of the dedication of life) is expected to diligently perform the rituals detailed in the Brahmanas in relation to their corresponding Mantras from the Samhitas. The Vanaprastha, or the recluse, the hermit (the third part of the dedication of life) rises above prayer as a chant and performance as a ritual, and busies himself with pure inward contemplation of the more philosophical and abstract realities hidden behind the outward concepts of divinity and the external performances of ritual. The Sannyasin, or the spiritually illumined renunciate (the fourth and concluding part of the dedicated life) occupies himself with direct meditations as prescribed in the Upanishads, whose outlook of life transcends all empirical forms, outward relations, nay, space and time itself.

Among the ten Upanishads, the Isa, Kena, Katha, Prasna and Mundaka may be regarded as more introductory, providing preliminary details of a more or less preparatory nature in the understanding of the great truths of the universe. The Kathopanishad, with its musical tone, literary excellence and homely message of the value spiritual, should, indeed, form a fitting text for the beginner in the study of the Upanishads. It is sometimes held that the Brihadaranyaka is a vast commentary on the suggestions made in the Isa Upanishad, while the Brihadaranyaka has a certain internal connection with the precise adoration of the Almighty sung in the Purusha-Sukta of the Samhita. The Mundaka also serves as a good introduction.

But it is the Brihadaranyaka, Chhandogya, Aitareya, Taittiriya and Mandukya, that rise above the level of ordinary instruction and stand as most exalted specimens of a direct encounter with Reality. The Brihadaranyaka is like an omnibus, where anything can be found anywhere. The Chhandogya is more realistic form, and, while it covers a very wide range of subjects like the Brihadaranyaka itself, is characteristically different in make, and presents itself as being more intimate with the hearth and the home and the more concrete values capable of easy comprehension. The Aitareya is the story of creation, cosmology. The Taittiriya is many-sided, but its main issues as psychological, explaining the composition of the individual, thus forming, together with the Aitareya, a practical text on the story of creation. The Mandukya Upanishad is very brief and seems to sum up the intentions of all the Upanishads in just twelve Mantras, dealing, as it does, with the structure of levels of reality as indicated in the stages of consciousness, namely, waking, dream and sleep, suggesting thereby the presence of a Transcendent Universal, timeless and eternal.

The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad is a veritable research reservoir and may be taken up for intensive study by those who are pure in heart, sincere in their aspirations, and wholly devoted to a Godly life.

 

Preface

Worshipful H.H. Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj could see through the publication of his translation and commentary on the eight Upanishads, - Isa, Kena, Katha, Prasna, Mundaka, Mandukya, Taittiriya, Aitareya, - during his physical presence in this world. But as an ardent and devout follower of ancient tradition, he was also aware and was particular that the major Upanishads, which form the philosophical foundation of spiritual culture, ten in number, should all be presented and brought out for the benefit of seekers of Truth. For various reasons, it did not become possible to bring out the remaining two Upanishads, viz., the Brihadaranyaka and the Chhandogya, the largest ones among the whole group; and Sri Gurudev did, once or twice, hint at the Management of the Divine Life Society about the necessity to bring out the Commentaries on the remaining two Upanishads also. The circumstances at that time were somehow such that this publication did not see the light of day during his lifetime. But his disciples' and devotees were acutely conscious of the wish of the great Master, which they were eager to fulfil at the earliest available opportunity.

Thus, we release this pleasant and stimulating surprise to the public, this large edition of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad,-may we call it a magnum opus-with the original Sanskrit text and an English translation of the same, together with an elaborate expository commentary. The first edition of this book was published in the year 1985. As there is consistent demand from the reading public, we are bringing out this edition.

The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad is the most detailed and magnificent revelation of the ancient philosopher-seers, which, in its six chapters packed with thought and revelation, provides to the students a practically exhaustive and concentrated teaching on every aspect of life, making it an indispensable guidebook to the student of literature as well as the philosopher, the religious devotee, and the mystical and spiritual seeker engaged in meditation for divine realisation.

 

CONTENTS

 

Gayatri-Brahmana
Meditation on the Four Feet of the
Gayatri Mantra

Preface   v
Introduction   vii
MADHU-KANDA
 
Santi Mantra   1
CHAPTER I
 
Section i Asvamedha-Brahmana
Meditation on the Sacrificial Horse as
the Cosmic Person, Hiranyagarbha
3
Section ii Agni-Brahmana
Creation and Evolution of the Universe
-The Concepts of Death and Sacrifice
11
Section iii Udgitha-Brahmana
Meditation on the Vital Force - Allegory
of the Warfare between the Celestials
and the Demons
30
Section iv Purushavidha-Brahmana
The Saga of Creation
58
Section v Saptanna-Brahmana
Meditation on the Seven Forms of Food, the Objects of Desires, Manifestations of
the Supreme
93
Section vi Uktha-Brahmana
Meditation on the Names, Forms and
Actions as the Manifestations of
Hiranyagarbha
132
CHAPTER II
 
Section i Ajatasatru-Brahmana
Meditation on the Lower and Higher
Levels of Consciousness
138
Section ii Sisu-Brahmana
Meditation Prana- Analogy of the
New-born Calf
165
Section iii Murta-Amurta-Brahmana
Meditation on the Gross and Subtle
Manifestations of Reality
175
Section iv Maitreyi-Brahmana
Instruction on the Supreme by Sage
Yajnavalkya to his Wife Maitreyi - All
Love rooted in the Self- The Universe
is Non-different from the Self before its
Manifestation, during its Existence and
after its Disappearance
188
Section v Madhu-Brahmana
Mutual Relationship of Everything with
Everything contained in the First Two
Chapters
247
YAJNAVALKYA-KANDA
 
CHAPTER III
 
Section i Asvala-Brahmana
How to overcome the Defects in the
Sacrificial Rites and their Results-
Meditation combined with Rituals, the
Means
252
Section ii Artabhaga-Brahmana
The Senses and Their Objects - The
Supreme Being as Death of Death
271
Section iii Bhujyu-Brahmana
The Goal of Performing the Horse
Sacrifice -Some Hints on Cosmic
Geography
286
Section iv Ushasta-Brahmana
Brahman, The Supreme -Direct and
Immediate - Unknowable through the
Individual Intellect
293
Section v Kahola-Brahmana
Renunciation, the Means of Liberation -
The Three Kinds of Desires - Balya,
Panditya and Mauna
300
Section vi Gargi-Brahmana
Meditation on the Conditioned Brahman
308
Section vii Antaryami-Brahmana
Meditation on the Inner Controller
313
Section viii Akshara-Brahmana
Meditation on the Supreme
Unconditioned Brahman
325
Section ix Sakalya-Brahmana
The Number of Gods- Meditation on
the Eight Persons and Their
Corresponding Deites- Meditation on
the Five Directions with Their Deities
and Supports -Meditation on the
Essence of the Vital Force- Comparison
of Man with a Tree -Source of Rebirth
or Creation Established as the Supreme
Brahman.
345
CHAPTER IV
 
Section i Shadacarya-Brahmana
Defects of the Meditation on Parts-
Instruction on the Meditation on the
Whole
373
Section ii Kurcha-Brahmana
A Short Analytical Study of the Three
States of Waking, Dreaming and Deep
Sleep
386
Section iii Jyotir-Brahmana
Meditation on The Supreme as The
Light of Lights-Further Detailed
Analysis of the States of Waking, Dream
and Deep Sleep
397
Section iv Saririka-Brahmana
What becomes of the Ignorant Jiva, and
of the Knower of Brahman, after the
Fall of the Body
431
Section v Maitreyi-Brahmana
A Restatement of Section iv of Chapter II
461
Section vi Vamsa-Brahmana
Line of Teachers and Disciples for the
Knowledge in Chapter IIIrd and IV
472

KHILA-KANDA
 
CHAPTER V
 
Section i Om Kham Brahma-Brahmana
Meditation on Brahman as The Whole,
The Plenum
475
Section ii Prajapatya-Brahmana
Prajapati's Instruction to Celestials,
Demons and Men - Three Main Virtues
of Self-control, Compassion and Charity
479
Section iii Hridaya-Brahmana
Meditation on the Heart as Brahmana
482
Section iv Satya-Brahmana
Meditation on Truth as Brahman
485
Section v Satya-Brahman-Samasthana-Brahamana
Meditation on the Three Syllables of the
Word 'Satya'- Meditation on the Sun
and on the Right Eye
487
Section vi Manomaya-Brahmana
Meditation on the Cosmic Mind and the
Individual Mind as Brahman
492
Section vii Vidyut-Brahmana
Meditation on the Lightning as Brahman
494
Section viii Vagdhenu-Brahmana
Meditation with the help of the Symbol
of Cow for the Veda
495
Section ix Vaisvanaragni-Brahmana
Meditation on the Universal Prana in
the Meditator
496
Section x Gati-Brahmana
The Course of the Soul After Death-
The Gradual Ascent of the Soul in
Krama-Mukti, Gradual Liberation
497
Section xi Vyahita-Brahmana
Meditation on Illness, Death etc., as
Supreme Austerities
499
Section xii Pratrida-Brahmana
Meditation based on the Correlation
Between Matter and Energy
501
Section xiii Uktha-Brahmana
Meditation on the Identity of Prana with
Uktha, Yajus, Saman and Kshatra
503
Section xiv 506
Section xv Suryagni Prarthana-Brahmana
prayer of the Sun God and Fire God at
the Time of Death
515
CHAPTER VI
 
Section i Prana Samvada-Brahmana
Meditation on the Vital Force-Story of
the Conversation between the Organs
and the Chief Vital Force
519
Section ii Karma-Vipaka-Brahmana
Meditation on the Five Fires - Story of
Svetaketu and King Pravahana
530
Section iii Srimantha-Brahmana
Ritual-cum-Meditation for Attaining
Prosperity
548
Section iv Putramantha-Brahmana
Ritual-cum-Meditation for Attaining
Progeny
555
Section v Vamsa-Brahmana
The Line of Teachers and Disciples for
the Knowledge contained in Chapters V
and VI, and the Whole Upanishad
565
Santi Mantra   567
Appendices   568

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