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Books > Hindu > Upanishads > Brhadaranyaka > The Brhadaranyaka Upanishad
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The Brhadaranyaka Upanishad
The Brhadaranyaka Upanishad
Description

Preface

The Brhadaranyaka Upanishad, or the great forest of knowledge, as the significance of this title would suggest, is a veritable mine of wisdom, with its six chapters touching upon the internal meaning of almost every phase of human life. The word 'Upanishad' is supposed to connote a secret instruction or a hidden doctrine, secret and hidden in the sense that it purports to reveal the invisible background or reality behind the visible forms of temporal existence. It is evident that things are not what they seem. And the Upanishad is a record of the unfolding of the mystery that lies behind phenomena.

The subject of the Brhadaranyaka Upanishad rises into a crescendo of importance, heightening its encompassing gamut of theme after theme, right from the very commencement until the conclusion of the Fourth Section of the First Chapter, rising in its pitch at this stage somewhat like the Ultimate Revelation at the level of the Eleventh chapter of the Bhagavadgita, which blossoms gradually through its earlier chapters.

Literally as a wide-ranging forest, one can discover in the Brhadaranyaka Upanishad new visions through its different sections or cantos, and perhaps we can find it anything anywhere. However, since the student might well feel more at home through teachings presented in the form of a well-tended garden rather than a thick jungle of information, the arrangement of the lectures, which form the substance of this book, is patterned to follow a logical ascent o subjects, keeping aside matters of a secondary character or importance to a later consideration as a sort of a sequel, so that the thread of the narration of similar themes is maintained without breaking the same with an interruption by some other subject which is not very relevant to the contemplation hand. Thus, these lectures follow a procedure as detailed below:

There is a continuity from the beginning of the Upanishad till the Fifth Section of the First Chapter. Then, the trend of the lectures proceeds directly there-from to the Fourth Section of the Second Chapter, and thence to the end of the Fifth Chapter. The left-out sections of the First Chapter and the beginning three sections of the Second Chapter are then touched upon after the description of the Fifth Chapter is over. Also, in these discourses, a study of the Sixth chapter of this Upanishad, though very interesting and even important as an esoteric teaching on certain essential aspects of human life considered as necessary steps interesting and even important, is omitted altogether, since one would feel that this part of the Upanishad is not going to fit into the normal course of present-day human thinking.

The first Section of the sixth Chapter is concerning the importance of the Prana and the functions of the different sense-organs; and the essentials of this subject have already been considered elsewhere in this work. Thus, this is not repeated again as a fresh study. The Second Section o the Sixth Chapter concerns the narration of the famous Panchagni-vidya, which occurs also in the Chhandogya Upanishad. Since an entirely new publication, known as Vaishvanara-Vidya, expounded by the author, includes this subject and is available to the public as a separate treatise, the same is not discussed again in the present work. The Third and the Fourth Sections of the Sixth Chapter relate to certain mystic rituals performed in connection with attainment of material prosperity and the living of a family life. The same are not taken up here for study, as their significance cannot be understood by a mere reading for oneself without proper personal initiation and the requisite spiritual background.

The entire series of these lectures being, as usual, an unpremeditated, on the spot speaking by the author, the conversational tone has been maintained to keep up the intimate touch, which we feel would make this highly indigestible topic more digestible. Though the author himself has touched up the manuscript of the First and Second Chapters, the other three Chapters were edited by his disciples, as his feeble eyesight would not permit him to go through this portion of the manuscript of the lectures. Thus, the reader might discover a little difference in these sections, rather unavoidably.

A study of this book would be found easier if it is taken up side by side by side with any standard edition of the Upanishad, preferably containing the original Sanskrit text with an intelligible translation, inasmuch as the lectures constitute a widespread exposition of the in-depth intention of the teachings rather than a translation or just an annotation of the text.

We have a firm hope that this unique publication will serve as a standard guide to everyone who aspires to delve into the profundities of this superb scripture.

From the Jacket

Swami Krishnananda is a highly respected philosophical writer, especially on metaphysics, psychology and sociology. Swamiji's books are known the world over a excellent presentations of answers to the daily questions that arise in the day-to-day confrontations of a human being.

Swami Krishnananda was the General Secretary of The Divine Life Society from 1961 until 2001. Swamiji was a direct disciple of His Holiness Swami Sivananda, founder of this Institution. Swamiji attained Mahasamadhi on 23rd November, 2001.

 

CONTENTS
Invocatory Prayer v
Preface vii
Introduction xi
CHAPTER I
 
FIRST BRAHMANA
 
The Universe as a Sacrificial Horse 3
SECOND BRAHMANA
 
The Creation of the Universe 11
THIRD BRAHMANA
 
The Superiority of the Vital Force Among All Functions 48
FOURTH BRAHMANA
 
Creation from the Universal Self 84
FIFTH BRAHMANA
 
Prajapatis Production of the World  
as Food for Himself 157
CHAPTER II
 
FOURTH BRAHMANA
 
The Conversation of Yajnavalkya and  
Maitreyi on the Absolute Self 167
FIFTH BRAHMANA
 
Madhu-Vidya: The Honey Doctrine 194
SIXTH BRAHMANA
 
The Line of Teachers and Pupils 210
CHAPTER III
 
FIRST BRAHMANA
 
Sacrificial Worship and its Rewards 211
SECOND BRAHMANA
 
The Man in Bondage and His Future at Death 227
THIRD BRAHMANA
 
The Resort of the Performers of the Horse Sacrifice 239
FOURTH BRAHMANA
 
The Unknowability of Brahman 244
FIFTH BRAHMANA
 
Renunciation, the Way to Know Brahman 247
SIXTH BRAHMANA
 
Brahman, the Universal Ground 251
SEVENTH BRAHMANA
 
The Nature of the Inner Controller 255
EIGHTH BRAHMANA
 
The Unqualified Brahman 267
NINTH BRAHMANA
 
Many Gods and One Brahman 280
Eight Different Persons and Their  
Corresponding Divinities 291
Five Directions in Space, Their Deities and Supports 304
The Self 314
Man Compared to a Tree 318
CHAPTER IV
 
FIRST BRAHMANA
 
Inadequate Definitions of Brahman 322
SECOND BRAHMANA
 
Concerning the Soul 342
THIRD BRAHMANA
 
The Light of Man is the Self 355
The Different States of the Self 360
The Self in Dream and Deep Sleep 382
The Self at Death 409
FOURTH BRAHMANA
 
The Soul of the Unrealised after Death 417
FIFTH BRAHMANA
 
The Supreme Self and the Supreme Love 476
CHAPTER V
 
FIRST BRAHMANA
 
Brahman the Inexhaustible 478
SECOND BRAHMANA
 
The Three Principal Virtues 485
THIRD BRAHMANA
 
Brahman as the True or the Real 495
FOURTH BRAHMANA
 
Brahman as the True or the Real 495
FIFTH BRAHMANA
 
The Real Explained 500
SIXTH BRAHMANA
 
The Divine Person 515
SEVENTH BRAHMANA
 
Brahman as Lightning 519
EIGHTH BRAHMANA
 
The Veda Symbolised as a Cow 521
The Universal Fire 524
TENTH BRAHMANA
 
The Course after Death 526
ELEVENTH BRAHMANA
 
The Supreme Austerities 533
TWELFTH BRAHMANA
 
The via media of Attitude 537
THIRTEENTH BRAHMANA
 
Meditation on the Life-Breath 539
FOURTEENTH BRAHMANA
 
The Sacred Gayatri Prayer 542
FIFTEENTH BRAHMANA
 
Prayer to the Sun by a Dying Person 553
CHAPTER I (CONTINUED)
 
FIFTH BRAHMANA (CONTINUED)
 
The Threefold Creation 563
The Self Identified with the Sixteenfold  
Prajapati, the Time Spirit 577
The Three Worlds and the Means of Winning Them 584
Father's Benediction and Transmission of Charge 586
The Unfailing Vital Force 592
SIXTH BRAHMANA
 
The Threefold Character of the Universe 600
CHAPTER II (CONTINUED)
 
FIRST BRAHMANA
 
A Progressive Definition of Brahman 607
SECOND BRAHMANA
 
The Vital Force Embodied in a Person 636
THIRD BRAHMANA
 
The Two Forms of Reality 645
RECAPITULATION
 
Chapter I - The Absolute and the Universe 657
Chapter II - The Supreme Goal of Life 676
Chapter III - Divine Immanence and the Correlativity of all Things 681
Chapter IV - The Inner Reality 689
Chapter V - The Principles of Meditation 693
Chapter VI - The Spiritual and the Temporal 697
Conclusion 701
Notes 703

Sample Pages

















The Brhadaranyaka Upanishad

Item Code:
IDH435
Cover:
Hardcover
Edition:
2006
ISBN:
8170521815
Language:
English
Size:
8.8" X 5.6
Pages:
747
Other Details:
Weight of the Book: 830 gms
Price:
$30.00   Shipping Free
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Preface

The Brhadaranyaka Upanishad, or the great forest of knowledge, as the significance of this title would suggest, is a veritable mine of wisdom, with its six chapters touching upon the internal meaning of almost every phase of human life. The word 'Upanishad' is supposed to connote a secret instruction or a hidden doctrine, secret and hidden in the sense that it purports to reveal the invisible background or reality behind the visible forms of temporal existence. It is evident that things are not what they seem. And the Upanishad is a record of the unfolding of the mystery that lies behind phenomena.

The subject of the Brhadaranyaka Upanishad rises into a crescendo of importance, heightening its encompassing gamut of theme after theme, right from the very commencement until the conclusion of the Fourth Section of the First Chapter, rising in its pitch at this stage somewhat like the Ultimate Revelation at the level of the Eleventh chapter of the Bhagavadgita, which blossoms gradually through its earlier chapters.

Literally as a wide-ranging forest, one can discover in the Brhadaranyaka Upanishad new visions through its different sections or cantos, and perhaps we can find it anything anywhere. However, since the student might well feel more at home through teachings presented in the form of a well-tended garden rather than a thick jungle of information, the arrangement of the lectures, which form the substance of this book, is patterned to follow a logical ascent o subjects, keeping aside matters of a secondary character or importance to a later consideration as a sort of a sequel, so that the thread of the narration of similar themes is maintained without breaking the same with an interruption by some other subject which is not very relevant to the contemplation hand. Thus, these lectures follow a procedure as detailed below:

There is a continuity from the beginning of the Upanishad till the Fifth Section of the First Chapter. Then, the trend of the lectures proceeds directly there-from to the Fourth Section of the Second Chapter, and thence to the end of the Fifth Chapter. The left-out sections of the First Chapter and the beginning three sections of the Second Chapter are then touched upon after the description of the Fifth Chapter is over. Also, in these discourses, a study of the Sixth chapter of this Upanishad, though very interesting and even important as an esoteric teaching on certain essential aspects of human life considered as necessary steps interesting and even important, is omitted altogether, since one would feel that this part of the Upanishad is not going to fit into the normal course of present-day human thinking.

The first Section of the sixth Chapter is concerning the importance of the Prana and the functions of the different sense-organs; and the essentials of this subject have already been considered elsewhere in this work. Thus, this is not repeated again as a fresh study. The Second Section o the Sixth Chapter concerns the narration of the famous Panchagni-vidya, which occurs also in the Chhandogya Upanishad. Since an entirely new publication, known as Vaishvanara-Vidya, expounded by the author, includes this subject and is available to the public as a separate treatise, the same is not discussed again in the present work. The Third and the Fourth Sections of the Sixth Chapter relate to certain mystic rituals performed in connection with attainment of material prosperity and the living of a family life. The same are not taken up here for study, as their significance cannot be understood by a mere reading for oneself without proper personal initiation and the requisite spiritual background.

The entire series of these lectures being, as usual, an unpremeditated, on the spot speaking by the author, the conversational tone has been maintained to keep up the intimate touch, which we feel would make this highly indigestible topic more digestible. Though the author himself has touched up the manuscript of the First and Second Chapters, the other three Chapters were edited by his disciples, as his feeble eyesight would not permit him to go through this portion of the manuscript of the lectures. Thus, the reader might discover a little difference in these sections, rather unavoidably.

A study of this book would be found easier if it is taken up side by side by side with any standard edition of the Upanishad, preferably containing the original Sanskrit text with an intelligible translation, inasmuch as the lectures constitute a widespread exposition of the in-depth intention of the teachings rather than a translation or just an annotation of the text.

We have a firm hope that this unique publication will serve as a standard guide to everyone who aspires to delve into the profundities of this superb scripture.

From the Jacket

Swami Krishnananda is a highly respected philosophical writer, especially on metaphysics, psychology and sociology. Swamiji's books are known the world over a excellent presentations of answers to the daily questions that arise in the day-to-day confrontations of a human being.

Swami Krishnananda was the General Secretary of The Divine Life Society from 1961 until 2001. Swamiji was a direct disciple of His Holiness Swami Sivananda, founder of this Institution. Swamiji attained Mahasamadhi on 23rd November, 2001.

 

CONTENTS
Invocatory Prayer v
Preface vii
Introduction xi
CHAPTER I
 
FIRST BRAHMANA
 
The Universe as a Sacrificial Horse 3
SECOND BRAHMANA
 
The Creation of the Universe 11
THIRD BRAHMANA
 
The Superiority of the Vital Force Among All Functions 48
FOURTH BRAHMANA
 
Creation from the Universal Self 84
FIFTH BRAHMANA
 
Prajapatis Production of the World  
as Food for Himself 157
CHAPTER II
 
FOURTH BRAHMANA
 
The Conversation of Yajnavalkya and  
Maitreyi on the Absolute Self 167
FIFTH BRAHMANA
 
Madhu-Vidya: The Honey Doctrine 194
SIXTH BRAHMANA
 
The Line of Teachers and Pupils 210
CHAPTER III
 
FIRST BRAHMANA
 
Sacrificial Worship and its Rewards 211
SECOND BRAHMANA
 
The Man in Bondage and His Future at Death 227
THIRD BRAHMANA
 
The Resort of the Performers of the Horse Sacrifice 239
FOURTH BRAHMANA
 
The Unknowability of Brahman 244
FIFTH BRAHMANA
 
Renunciation, the Way to Know Brahman 247
SIXTH BRAHMANA
 
Brahman, the Universal Ground 251
SEVENTH BRAHMANA
 
The Nature of the Inner Controller 255
EIGHTH BRAHMANA
 
The Unqualified Brahman 267
NINTH BRAHMANA
 
Many Gods and One Brahman 280
Eight Different Persons and Their  
Corresponding Divinities 291
Five Directions in Space, Their Deities and Supports 304
The Self 314
Man Compared to a Tree 318
CHAPTER IV
 
FIRST BRAHMANA
 
Inadequate Definitions of Brahman 322
SECOND BRAHMANA
 
Concerning the Soul 342
THIRD BRAHMANA
 
The Light of Man is the Self 355
The Different States of the Self 360
The Self in Dream and Deep Sleep 382
The Self at Death 409
FOURTH BRAHMANA
 
The Soul of the Unrealised after Death 417
FIFTH BRAHMANA
 
The Supreme Self and the Supreme Love 476
CHAPTER V
 
FIRST BRAHMANA
 
Brahman the Inexhaustible 478
SECOND BRAHMANA
 
The Three Principal Virtues 485
THIRD BRAHMANA
 
Brahman as the True or the Real 495
FOURTH BRAHMANA
 
Brahman as the True or the Real 495
FIFTH BRAHMANA
 
The Real Explained 500
SIXTH BRAHMANA
 
The Divine Person 515
SEVENTH BRAHMANA
 
Brahman as Lightning 519
EIGHTH BRAHMANA
 
The Veda Symbolised as a Cow 521
The Universal Fire 524
TENTH BRAHMANA
 
The Course after Death 526
ELEVENTH BRAHMANA
 
The Supreme Austerities 533
TWELFTH BRAHMANA
 
The via media of Attitude 537
THIRTEENTH BRAHMANA
 
Meditation on the Life-Breath 539
FOURTEENTH BRAHMANA
 
The Sacred Gayatri Prayer 542
FIFTEENTH BRAHMANA
 
Prayer to the Sun by a Dying Person 553
CHAPTER I (CONTINUED)
 
FIFTH BRAHMANA (CONTINUED)
 
The Threefold Creation 563
The Self Identified with the Sixteenfold  
Prajapati, the Time Spirit 577
The Three Worlds and the Means of Winning Them 584
Father's Benediction and Transmission of Charge 586
The Unfailing Vital Force 592
SIXTH BRAHMANA
 
The Threefold Character of the Universe 600
CHAPTER II (CONTINUED)
 
FIRST BRAHMANA
 
A Progressive Definition of Brahman 607
SECOND BRAHMANA
 
The Vital Force Embodied in a Person 636
THIRD BRAHMANA
 
The Two Forms of Reality 645
RECAPITULATION
 
Chapter I - The Absolute and the Universe 657
Chapter II - The Supreme Goal of Life 676
Chapter III - Divine Immanence and the Correlativity of all Things 681
Chapter IV - The Inner Reality 689
Chapter V - The Principles of Meditation 693
Chapter VI - The Spiritual and the Temporal 697
Conclusion 701
Notes 703

Sample Pages

















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