Maitri Upanishad: Book VII


1. Agni, the Gayatra, the Trivrt, the Rathantara, spring, the breath, the constellations and the Vasus rise in the east: they give heat, they rain, they praise, they go back inside, they look out through an opening. He is unthinkable, unshaped, profound, hidden, irreproachable, dense, deep, without strands, pure, radiant, enjoying the strands, fearsome, unceasing, lord of yogins, all-knowing, mighty, immeasurable, without beginning or end, glorious, unborn, meditative, indescribable, all-creating, self of all, all-enjoying, ruler of all, within the inner part of all.

2. India, the Tristubh, the Pahcada^a, the Brhat, summer, the diffused breath, Soma and the Rudras rise in the south: they give heat, they rain, they praise, they go back inside, they look out through an opening. He is without beginning or end, unlimited, not cut off, not to be used by another, independent, without distinguishing mark, unshaped, of endless power, Dhatr, the radiant.

3. The Maruts, the Jagati, the Saptadasa, the Vairupa, the rains, the lower breath, Sukra and the Adityas rise in the west; they give heat, they rain, they praise, they go back inside, they look out through an opening. It is peaceful, soundless, fearless, sorrowless, bliss, contented, firm, immovable, immortal, unfallen, constant, known, as Visnu, the foundation beneath everything.

4. The Visvedevas, the Anustubh, the Ekavimsa, the Vairaja, the autumn, the central breath, Varuna and the Sadhyas rise in the north: they give heat, they rain, they praise, they go back inside, they look out through an opening. He is pure within, cleansed, void, peaceful, without breath, selfless, endless.

5. Mitra-and-Varuna, the Pankti, the Trinava and Trayastrimsa, the 6akvara and Raivata, winter and the cold season, the up-breath, the Ahgirases and the moon rise above: they give heat, they rain, they praise, they go back inside, they look out through an opening. It is called the OM (pranava), the leader-forth (pranetr), with light as its form, free from sleep, free from old age, free from death, free from sorrow.

6. Sani, Rahu, Ketu, serpents, ogres, yaksas, men, birds, sarabhas, elephants etc- rise below: they give heat, they rain, they praise, they go back inside, they look out through an opening. He is the one who is wise, the separator,255 within all, imperishable, pure, cleansed, illuminated, patient, peaceful.

7. He is within the heart, subtler, kindled like a fire that takes all forms. All this is food for him. All creatures are woven on him. The self is free from evil, ageless, deathless, without hunger or thirst, of true resolve, of true desire.256 He is the supreme lord. He is the overlord of beings. He is the protector of beings. He is the separating dam.257 He is Isana, Sambhu, Bhava, Rudra, Prajapati, creator of all, golden embryo, truth, breath, the goose, teacher, unfallen, Visnu, Narayana. The one who is in fire, the one who is in the heart and the one who is in the sun are one. Homage to you, the one who takes all forms, who are set in truth, in heaven.

8. Now the diseases of knowledge:

'Your majesty, the net of delusion has its source when those who are bound for heaven are defiled by those who are not bound for heaven. There are those who are always jolly, always abroad, always begging, always living by crafts; others who beg in cities, sacrificing for those for whom one should not sacrifice, students of Sudras, 6udras who know the sciences; others who are vagabonds, wearers of matted locks, dancers, mercenaries, who have gone forth yet appear on the stage, renegades who work for kings, and so on; others who pay reverence to yaksas, ogres, ghosts, imps, vampires, serpents, ghouls, etc., saying that they will placate them; others who falsely wear saffron robes and earrings, or carry skulls; and others who by false logic, examples, jugglery and conjuring seek to find status among those who know the Vedas. One should not live with them. They are patently thieves, and not bound for heaven.'

Someone has said:

'With juggleries of the non-self doctrine,
With false examples and causes,
Going astray, the world does not know
The difference between knowledge and ignorance.'

9. Becoming Sukra, Brhaspati created this ignorance for the safety of Indra and the destruction of the demons. By it folk teach the auspicious (Siva) as inauspicious and the inauspicious as auspicious: they say, 'Let there be meditation on dharma which is destructive of the Vedas and the rest of the sciences.' So one should not meditate on that. On the contrary, it is like a barren woman: pleasure is its only fruit, as it is of one who has fallen from the course. It is not to be undertaken.

Someone has said:

'These two are far apart, disparate,
Ignorance and what is called wisdom.
I think Nadketas is a seeker of wisdom:
Many desires do not distract you.

'Whoever knows knowledge and ignorance�
Both of them, together�
By ignorance crosses over death
And by wisdom reaches immortality.

'Entwined in the midst of ignorance,
Wise in their own view, thinking themselves learned,
The foolish rush about,
Like blind men led by one who is blind,

10. The gods and demons once approached Brahma seeking the self. They paid homage to him and said, 'Blessed one, we seek the self: teach us.'

After meditating for a long time, he thought, 'The demons seek for a different self.' So a different one was taught to them. So these foolish ones live with great attachment, destroying their raft, praising falsehood: because of the conjuring, they see falsehood as truth. What is set out in the Vedas is truth. Those who know live by what is taught in the Vedas. Therefore a Brahmana should not meditate on what is not Vedic.

11. The very own form of the sky is the supreme brightness that exists within space. It is disposed in three forms: in fire, in the sun, and in the breath. The very own form of the sky that exists within space is the syllable, OM. So by OM one should worship the limitless brightness. By it one wakes up, rises up, and recovers one's breath.

There is a constant support through meditation on brahman. Here, in the stirring of breath, it has its place in the heat which scatters light. In a stirring like that of smoke, going up into the sky along a branch it moves from limb to limb. It is like the casting of salt in water, or the heat of ghee, or me range of the meditator. On this, folk say;

'So why is called "lightning-like"?' Because, even as it goes up, the whole body lights up. So by OM one should worship the limitless brightness.

The eye-person, who rests
In the right eye
Is Indra. His wife
Rests in the left eye.

Their meeting place
Is in the channel that enters the heart.
The clot of blood here
Is the energy of them both.

Reaching to the eye
And firmly set there
That vein is a stream for the two,
Single, while being double.

Mind strikes the fire of the body;
That sets in motion the wind;
But the wind, moving in the chest,
Produces a soft sound.

By joining with fire from space, it is harnessed in the heart,
Subtler (anu) than an atom (anu): twice an atom in the region of the throat;
On the tip of the tongue know it to be three atoms' size.
It comes forth as the alphabet, they say.

Seeing, one does not see death,
Nor disease, nor suffering:
Seeing, one sees everything,
Wins everything, everywhere.

The one with sight, the mover in dreams,
The deeply asleep, and the one who is beyond sleep�
These are the four divisions.
The greatest of them is the fourth.

In three of them, brahman goes on one foot;
In the last, it goes on three feet.
In order to experience truth and falsehood,
The great self takes on duality�
The great self takes on duality.

OM. May my limbs, speech, breath, eye, ear, strength and all senses grow strong. Everything is the brahman of the Upanisads. May I not reject brahman. May brahman not reject me. May there be no rejecting. May there be no rejecting of me. May all the dharmas which are in the Upanisads be in me, who delight in the self. May they be in me.

OM. Peace, peace, peace.




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