Invocation

Om. May no harm be done here, may the vessels of the great Seers continue in salvation, may these movements be in accord with Divine Will, may this desire be motivated by Love, may what is not beneficent wither to obscurity.
I prostrate.

 

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Revised 29th April 2017

 

Chapter one

In the beginning we desired...

 

Section 1

1.1.1   Om. The head of the sacrificial horse is the dawn, its eye the sun, its vital force the air, its open mouth the fire called Vaisvanara, and the body of the sacrificial horse is the year. Its back is heaven, its belly the sky, its hoof the earth, its sides the four quarters, its ribs the intermediate quarters, its members the seasons, its joints the months and fortnights, its feet the days and nights, its bones the stars and its flesh the clouds. Its half-digested food is the sand, its blood-vessels the rivers, its liver and spleen the mountains, its hairs the herbs and trees. Its forepart is the ascending sun, its hind part the descending sun, its yawning is lightning, its shaking the body is thundering, its making water is raining, and its neighing is voice.

"The head of the sacrificial horse is the dawn, its eye the sun",

The setting for the horse sacrifice,   Ashvamedha,   is depicted so prominently at the beginning of this all wise Upanishad because the Seer,   the Rishi whose intention it is here to reveal the higher Truth of Divine Existence,   saw that this Truth could be explained using the symbolism of the horse sacrifice ritual as a vehicle,   because these rituals arose through the very forgetting of that Truth.

The worldly purpose of this expensive ritual was to satisfy the desire of the rich and powerful King for whom it was performed to continue his life of material riches,   which he naturally believed would benefit his subjects and dependents.
Through his sons and heirs,  his line,   the King would see himself living on,   the ritual included fertility rites performed by his Queen.
All of this performance of desire arose due to ignorance.  Used within this commentary the word ignorance at all times means the forgetting of our true eternal identity with the Divine Absolute,   Brahman,   God.

This Universe,   this Creation is said to have been brought into being because of   "he"   that first desired to experience worldly knowledge for himself.
Through the detailed symbolism within the ritual of the horse sacrifice the cause of our fall from Divine Unity to the duality of the Universe,   the maintenance of this Creation and finally our inevitable path back home as once again a Unity as the Absolute Alone is explained within this Brihadaranyaka Upanishad.
The opening sentence started with the dawn of the universal day with the head facing to the east and the rising sun being seen in the eye of the horse.   In due course we will hear of the events which lead to the birth of this universal day.

"Its vital force the air",

Once the duality of material Creation is made manifest then the duality of a   "vital force"   comes into consideration, because once a person has the Consciousness of being born and experiencing life then there is the duality of living and dying, so living needs to be supported by a   "force",   this   "vital force"   is signified by the breath of life or air.

"Its open mouth the fire called Vaisvanara",

Considering Creation itself being due to the desire for the creation of ones objects of desire then desire is the open mouth that hungers for the food of that desire and the fire   ("called Vaisvanara")   represents the   "sacrificial fire"  through which one hopes to gain his desires through practising these rites and rituals.

"The body of the sacrificial horse is the year. Its back is heaven, its belly the sky, its hoof the earth",

This material Universe is the creation of material forms.   All material is mortal.   Material and mortality bring time and time is a function of the material universe.   In particular   "the sacrificial horse is the year"   means to symbolise the whole Universe as covered by a complete sun cycle.
This Universe is represented as described through the horse as heaven,   sky and earth.

"Its sides the four quarters, its ribs the intermediate quarters",

Similarly to heaven and earth above,   all the surrounding directions called the   "quarters"   (as in "the four corners of the universe," as it were)   are symbolised by the sides of the horse.

"its members the seasons, its joints the months and fortnights, its feet the days and nights",

The mortal material of the sacrificial horse is being associated with time as the four seasons with its four limbs and the joints as months and fortnights connecting those limbs as do months etc. connect the seasons.

"Its bones the stars and its flesh the clouds",

The white bones represent the stars and the flesh that covers the bones as the clouds that cover the stars.

"Its half-digested food is the sand, its blood-vessels the rivers, its liver and spleen the mountains",

The loose half digested grain in the stomach of the sacrificial horse represents the loose sand and soil of the planet.   The flowing blood represents the flowing rivers and the lumpy liver and spleen the rising and falling of the mountains.

"Its hairs the herbs and trees",

The hair that stand up and grows out of the surface of the Sacrificial horse represents all that which grows out of the earth such as trees and so forth.

"Its forepart is the ascending sun, its hind part the descending sun",

Due to the ceremonial placement of the sacrificial horse lying east to west the head and forepart faces and represents East and the rising sun.   The hind part represents the West and the setting sun.

"Its yawning is lightning, its shaking the body is thundering, its making water is raining",

The sound of thunder is represented by the noisy shaking of its body,   and lightning as the flashing white teeth of the horse seen while yawning.   The urinating horse moistens the earth as does rain.

"and its neighing is voice".

The depiction of voice is made with the neighing of the sacrificial horse.   The horse sacrifice symbolises desire for the world.   The voice symbolises the continuing sounding of desire that maintains further Creation.

So here the apparent separate bodies,   parts and qualities of the universe have been symbolically identified with the body and parts of the sacrificial horse.
The universe arose from the desire to experience worldly knowledge.
The horse sacrifice,   symbolising the Universe,   arose from the desire to continue to experience worldly knowledge.

The purpose of this Upanishad is to enable full Realisation of the ultimate unity of all Existence,   the transience of this universe and the eternal existence of the Absolute Brahman,   Self,   God.

 

1.1.2   The gold vessel called Mahiman in front of the horse, is the day. Its source is the eastern sea. The silver vessel called Mahiman behind the horse, is the night. Its source is the western sea. These two vessels called Mahiman appeared on either side of the horse. As a Haya it carried the gods, as a Vajin the celestial minstrels, as an Arvan the Asuras, and as an Asva men. The Supreme Self is its stable and the Supreme Self (or the sea) its source.

The preparation of the sacrificial horse is completed by the symbolic placing of objects around the horse.   The gold vessel for the sun and the silver vessel for the moon and so forth.

"As a Haya it carried the gods,...the Asuras,...men."

Because the sacrificial horse represents the universe the horse is described as carrying all beings just as the universe "carries" all beings.

"The Supreme Self is its stable"

When at rest,   while not manifest in material form this Creation this Universe rests as knowledge alone which is the Absolute Self its   "stable"   as it were.

"the Supreme Self (or the sea) its source".

As said above this Universe, which the sacrificial horse is symbolically emulating is held as pure knowledge alone when at rest as the Absolute.   When this Universe is made manifest it is but a material projection of knowledge from the   "sea"   of Knowledge that is the Absolute,   literally.

 

Plainly this ritual and the sacrifice act itself is deep in the nescience of duality and is far from the truth and reality of Advaita.   But,   it is being featured here within this Brihadaranyaka Upanishad that contains the highest Truth and revelations of the great seers concerning The Absolute,   so we first have to come to terms with this.
What would you sacrifice to gain proper understanding of Divine Truth?   Much of what we think we are or what we have or what we need will have to be surrendered.   Sacrifice of this kind precedes and enables the attainment of higher understanding.   Renunciation accompanies Realisation.

'The head of the sacrificial horse is the dawn, its eye the sun, its vital force the air, its open mouth the fire called Vaisvanara'

How did the mind move on first reading this?   Did   Manas  (the discursive unsupervised random mind)  remain connected to   Buddhi  (the intellect of the fearless intuitive heart)  or did the heart close?  The unsupervised discursive mind moves swiftly through fear so as to protect itself from unwanted ideas.   It is likely mind will strongly believe it is capable of deriving truth from sensory input.
Entry via the sacrificial horse is our chance to attain correct thinking through understanding sacrifice.   Could you sacrifice some logic and let go of the apparently obvious when told by a wise teacher that the hairs on a horse are herbs and trees?   That the eye is the sun?
The hair certainly hasn't always been horse hair.   Within this Creation bubble nothing new comes into existence and nothing   "leaves"   Existence,   because this Existence is all there is.   All things are in eternal flux so horse hair will certainly have atoms that at some time have been the components of a tree or flower or even a human.   The eye representing the sun is also made from food nurtured by the suns rays.
It is the seeing and acceptance of names and forms that fosters the ignorance of duality.   We are told in the scriptures that all forms are ultimately unreal.   All forms are dependent on their constituent parts and those parts are in turn dependent on the substance of their construction.   Ultimately all forms are supported by the same substratum of existence. From this same substratum of Consciousness and Knowledge the void and all planets rise and return just as a clay pot rises from clay and eventually returns to earth.   So the moon and a flower or even the wind are the same substance with a different name and shape.   The sacrificial horse and the universe are in fact the same and differ in shape, size and name only.

Through meditation the sacrificial horse can help reveal the Unity of existence.   This feat can be achieved only if the person meditating is capable of self sacrifice.   We need to surrender our proud credibility to the wisdom of the author.
During meditation be aware that we are not just seeing the parts as forming a unity,   each part itself and the parts of that part are the singularity of the Absolute.

This is all to say that here we are in the realm of Creation.   Meditation on the identity of name form and material will enlighten us to the error of duality and the transience of this Creation.   If Creation itself is transient then what is its cause and its renewal?   Why are we still here?

 

Section 2

This first description in this Upanishad and chapter describing the beginning of the Universe is the all encompassing explanation.
Later,   further descriptions arising from this beginning will explain its other considerations;   Such as the beginning in terms of the   "first born Brahman",   (Prajapati or Viraj)   and again this beginning in terms of it being the food of desire and so forth.
The idea is,   all further descriptions of   "the beginning"   throughout this chapter refer to this one beginning but will be discussing further philosophical aspects arising from this one beginning.

1.2.1   There was nothing whatsoever here in the beginning. It was covered only by Death (Hiranyagarbha), or Hunger, for hunger is death. He created the mind, thinking, 'Let me have a mind.' He moved about worshipping (himself). As he was worshipping, water was produced. (Since he thought), 'As I was worshipping, water sprang up,' therefore Arka (fire) is so called. Water (or happiness) surely comes to one who knows how Arka (fire) came to have this name of Arka.

"There was nothing whatsoever here in the beginning"

There will only ever be one type of beginning.   When this Upanishad talks of   "the beginning"   it is referring to the beginning of this transient Creation cycle,   this Universe.
The Absolute,   God,   Brahman, itself is without beginning,   without origination,   and is therefore eternally unchanging Existence,   One without a second.
When there is   "nothing"   (literally no thing, no void and no material form)   Creation,   this Universe, is unmanifest as Pure Knowledge that is the Absolute Brahman or God.   At the end of the Creation cycle the void and all it contains returns to that Absolute Primal Singularity that is Truth Consciousness and Bliss.

Events prior to this beginning of creation have been explained to us elsewhere in terms of   Aum,   in the   Mandukya Upanishad verse 7   "the coming to rest of all relative existence; " (creation) " utterly quiet; peaceful; blissful; non dual; this is the Atman,   the Self;   this is to be realised."   (Verses eight to twelve there,   give us a fuller description of the process of Creation).

We also have the process of creation itself described in conceptual terms as three qualities called   Gunas   Bhagavad-Gita 7-12,(13)   'I am not under the modes of material nature, for they, (three Gunas) on the contrary, are within Me'.   These being Rajas,   Sattvar and Tamas.   It is Tamas (measure, coming to rest) that has the final measure of creation and will cover its end   (death),   this is the Tamasic quality of the 'M' in Aum.   Until the time comes for the next creation cycle to begin,   creation will remain as knowledge Alone,   as no material "thing",   as pure Absolute Knowledge at rest,   (Truth,   Consciousness   and Bliss).

So,   "In the beginning"
When this Universe was again projected into material form,   Rajas   (the quality of creative energy)   came to have dominance represented by the Rajasic qualities within 'A' in the Aum of the Mandukya Upanishad.

"It was covered only by Death (Hiranyagarbha), or Hunger, for hunger is death"

Beginning the Creation of duality there is also the duality of labels,   Hiranyagarbha is the label given to the first describable differentiation from the stillness and Bliss of the Absolute.   "He"   or Hiranyagarbha or Gunas arose with that first desire.   This   "He"   being a movement of desire or energy is also therefore a vital force of desire,   and death,   as is being explained.
This verse describes the state of existence at the very beginning or cause of Creation.   It is desire that is said to be that cause of creation,   desire is hunger because it is a need which causes or creates the material of Creation to feed that desire.   Material is transient and is subject to the inevitable cycle of rise,  maintenance   and fall as depicted by the     Gunas   or Aum
The reality is that material Creation also represents inevitable entropy and death.   So the hunger of desire leads to Death.   At the birth of any creation before all else   "covered only by"   there will be a cause,   "hunger"   containing the seed of its own inevitable conclusion   "death".

"He created the mind, thinking, 'Let me have a mind'."

Mind is the faculty   "created"   in Consciousness of thinking through the cognition of knowledge,   thought and desire.
This is a reference to the first hunger of desire.   With the Absolute at rest Alone,   that is,   before the manifestation of Creation   "mind"   there existed,   as described above,   Truth   (knowledge),   Consciousness,   and   Bliss   ( equilibrium, harmony), alone.   This is the reality of Existence or The Absolute,  or God or Brahman.

In this Upanishad we will be shown how it is that desire is the cause of Creation and the fall in Consciousness to that of waking sleep,   forgetting and ignorance,   (In every instance of its use the word "ignorance" means the forgetting of one's Absolute Divine Unity).

The first desire for mind symbolises the desire for the possession of worldly knowledge.
Now we can understand that this desire for Mind is the first desire of duality,   because mind is the dividing characteristic between unity and duality in Consciousness.   From the moment of the appearance of Mind there arose in Consciousness an individual self (ego).   This individual self or mind from the ocean of knowledge and possibilities   "waters"   set about producing further objects of his desires,   that is,   seeking to experience happiness.   This ego,   this self,   this one,   is the one who now knows duality,   ("knows"   here means one who has formed Absolute knowledge for his own use as an individual   "self").   After that first fall into duality the seeker after happiness will continually desire and need to surround himself with the knowledge or materials of creation to hide his feeling of inadequacy or incompleteness.   This desirous one will come to feel fearful and incomplete due to the forgetting of his primal unity with the Absolute,  or God or Brahman.

"He moved about worshipping (himself)"

From the Truth Consciousness and Bliss of the unmanifest Absolute at rest we now have the movement,   as it were,   of individual awareness   ("I" or "mind").
This awareness or contemplation or   "worshipping"   is due to   "His"   forgetting of Divine unity.   In reality that which he now unknowingly desires or worships is the singularity of Absolute Knowledge that is   "Himself".

"As I was worshipping,".

This means this first born one was contemplating with desire   ("worshipping").   The object of his desire is known as Absolute Knowledge therefore the desire also needs to be obtained through the Consciousness of that Absolute   (because it is all that Exists).   It is Absolute Knowledge that is the sea or waters of knowledge.

"water sprang up,"

This   "water"   represents the material manifestation   ("sprang up")   of Absolute Knowledge which was the object of his   "worshipping,".   This   "water"   will be his material form   (body)   also other material objects of his desire.

"therefore Arka (fire) is so called".

"Arka (fire)"   represents the act of Creation,   the fire of Creation rises or is formed from the waters of Absolute knowledge to project or make manifest that object of desire   (the subject of the worship or ritual)   from the knowledge of its unmanifest existence.   (All that has existed,   all that now exists,   all that may exist,   exists eternally as the unmanifest Knowledge and Consciousness that is The Absolute.)

"Water (or happiness) surely comes to one...".

This   "Water"   means the material of the universe,   also his material form or body through which   "happiness"   is experienced.

"...who knows how Arka (fire) came to have this name of Arka".

This fire is the sacrificial fire,   which is in keeping with the theme of the horse sacrifice ritual.   It is called Arka because it is not seen as ordinary fire,   this fire constitutes a sacrificial alter through which one practices rites to obtain the objects of ones desire.
Therefore this Arka fire rises from the sea of knowledge to produce the material of the Universe   ("water or happiness")   through which the delusion or duality happiness comes.

The meaning of this symbolism is that the one who seeks worldly happiness through material gain may achieve happiness but as we shall be taught all worldly happiness is transient and short lived.   Further to this the seeking of such happiness through worldly knowledge reinforces and prolongs mans original forgetting of his Unity with the Divine Absolute.
This desire for worldly happiness leads him further into the transient cycle of birth and death experience.

 

1.2.2   Water is Arka. What was there (like) froth on the water was solidified and became this earth. When that was produced, he was tired. While he was (thus) tired and distressed, his essence, or lustre, came forth. This was Fire.

"Water is Arka".

"Arka".   is the fire of ritual desire and creation.   "Water"   represents all that is produced through this desire for material creation.

"What was there (like) froth on the water was solidified and became this earth"

From the sea or   "Water"s   of the unmanifest Knowledge that is the Absolute,   "this Earth"   was made manifest,   created through the fire   ("Water is Arka")   of desire     "was solidified",   came into material being.

"When that was produced, he was tired"

"He",   mind,   and his desires,   were produced   (materialised)   through moving the material energy of Creation   ("He moved about").   He will experience the stress of changes and entropy in that material energy.   This means he is now mutable and mortal,   "he was (thus) tired and distressed".

"While he was (thus) tired and distressed, his essence, or lustre, came forth. This was Fire".

His glowing achievement   "lustre"   is his Creative power of desire,   "fire".
Feeling tired and distressed due to his mortality,   he further desired a birth with the support of a material form   (Viraj).   "his essence, or lustre, came forth".

 

1.2.3   He (Viraj) differentiated himself in three ways, making the sun the third form, and air the third form. So this Prana (Viraj) is divided in three ways. His head is the east, and his arms that (north-east) and that (south-east). And his hind part is the west, his hip-bones that (north-west) and that (south-west), his sides the south and north, his back heaven, his belly the sky, and his breast, this earth. He rests on water. He who knows (it) thus gets a resting place wherever he goes.

"He (Viraj) differentiated himself in three ways, making the sun the third form, and air the third form"

From verse 1. Above we understand that this Creation is due to   "He"   that first desired to use Absolute Knowledge so creating a "self",   ("He created the mind").
In this verse it is   "He",   also prana   (vital force),   Purusa   (One Consciousness of all births)   or this Viraj,   who will be the first.

"So this Prana (Viraj) is divided in three ways".

"He" is in reality a projection in Consciousness from Absolute knowledge.   It is this same knowledge   "himself"   that is now further differentiated through material desire   (Hiranyagarbha, Vital force)   to form the   "air"   and the   "sun".

"His head..the east..arms that (north-east) and..(south-east)..hind part..the west..hip-bones that (north-west) and..(south-west)..sides..south and north, back heaven..belly..sky..his breast, this earth".

This original primal unity of Knowledge that is now being differentiated into material forms is here being symbolically identified and aligned as being the material forms of the universe and the form of the sacrificial horse with the head as the East and his hind as the West and so forth.
This is to maintain the identity,   in Consciousness,   between the vital force of material and desire as the sacrificial horse,   with the vital force of material and desire as the universe.

"He rests on water"

This means   "He"   as a vital force of material,   rests in or is supported from the waters of Absolute Knowledge.
Also,   "He"   as his material form,   Viraj,   is now supported by that form which is literally pervaded by water.

"He who knows (it) thus gets a resting place wherever he goes".

This means   "He"   through desire has now come to only know the material realm.   Until "he" once again comes to remember and realise his true identity with the unity of the Absolute Self his only rest will be a transient form within material Creation   ("wherever he goes").

The meaning is,   this first to be born caused Creation through his initial desire.   His ongoing desire for a body   (Viraj)   will cause his further fall into the Consciousness of material creation and duality through his experience,   in Consciousness,   of birth.
Through this birth into,   as it were,   his form he will further forget his true identity with the Non-Dual Absolute,   or Brahman,   or God.   That forgetting or losing of Absolute Consciousness through birth will result in the ignorance that sees duality and leads to a life experience feeling the need for further creation seeking to complete that missing part of himself.

 

1.2.4   He desired, 'Let me have a second form (body)'. He, Death or Hunger, brought about the union of speech (the Vedas) with the mind. What was the seed there became the Year (Viraj). Before him there had been no year. He (Death) reared him for as long as a year, and after this period projected him. When he was born, (Death) opened his mouth (to swallow him). He (the babe) cried 'Bhan!' That became speech.

This desire for a body is once again being described through the ritual of the horse sacrifice symbolised in the last verse by the orientation of Viraj with the universe.   Also   "What was the seed there"   alludes to his desire symbolised by the liquid Soma of the sacrifice ritual which is said to contain the seed of the object of desire.

"He desired,   Let me have a second form (body)."

This   "He"   who was made manifest due to the original desire for individuality,   mind,   and the third forms of sun and air,   now desires the second form of a body,   or more specifically the functions or organs for his use.

"He, Death or Hunger, brought about the union of speech (the Vedas) with the mind".

"Death or Hunger"   is as described previously a vital force of material and desire which here results in the material form of Viraj,   the first born "man".
Mind now united with the organs of a body means that mind is now united with speech,   mind and speech enable the expression of knowledge (Veda).

Hunger is desire,   desire causes the material Creation of the body,   the material creation is empty of true existence so it is therefore mortal,   mortality is death.   Before creation,   before hunger,   before desire,   there was no death.

"What was the seed there became the Year (Viraj)."

This   "seed"   or desire is a reference to the soma juice used in the horse sacrifice ritual which symbolically contains the seed of the desired outcome of the ritual.
That desired outcome lay in the ritual prior to the horse being sacrificed.   The horse was first allowed to wander free for one year then the horse was ceremonially sacrificed.   The sacrifice itself was supposed to win all the territory covered by the horse in that year.   But the wandering horse actually symbolised the suns journey round the world.   In reality the sacrifice was supposed to gain all that the sun had covered in that year,   which of course was the whole world.
In this case   "(Viraj)",   gains a birth into the world and therefore "wins the world",   or   "...became the Year (Viraj)."

(" Before him there had been no year").

Before this first Viraj there had been no desire,   therefore no universe,   therefore no time,   therefore   "no year".

"He (Death) reared him for as long as a year, and after this period projected him".

He, (material of desire or Hiranyagarbha or vital force)   hunger and death,   caused the manifestation   (reared)   of the form of the body.   It is said here that this took   "for as long as a year".   This is commensurate with the sacrificial horse wandering free for up to a year,   representing the sun covering the earth.   Also,   it was this Viraj who divided from himself   (knowledge)   the third forms of the air and the sun. So with "His" (Viraj)   being the second form he also projected Himself through this universe as the sacrificial horse.
But the "projecting" or rearing of the material form of the body will be as described by the three Gunas Rajas,   Satva and Tamas.

"When he was born, (Death) opened his mouth (to swallow him)".

To be materially born is to be exposed to the jaws of material death. To enter the Creation cycle is to experience the cycle of birth and death.   This Death is the measure of entropy that is symbolised by Tamas.   As described earlier Tamas is the Guna quality of measure which brings to an end material form.   From the moment of birth the form of the baby will mature towards the inevitable end of its "life",   that inevitability is the open jaws of death,   the end will be measured by the predominance of Tamas in the balance of the Gunas.

"He (the babe) cried 'Bhan!' That became speech".

The first cry of the baby it is said was the first sounding of speech,   speech also sounds the duality that is the ignorance in Creation.

It should be remembered that the Absolute which is Truth, Consciousness and Bliss does not desire.   Desire is a result of the ignorance that is a forgetting of the Absolute.   As such,  Ignorance is a cause of material Creation.

 

1.2.5   He thought, 'If I kill him, I shall be making very little food.' Through that speech and that mind he projected all this, whatever there is the Vedas Re, Yajus and Saman, the metres, the sacrifices, men and animals. Whatever he projected, he resolved to eat. Because he eats everything, therefore Aditi (Death) is so called. He who knows how Aditi came to have This name of Aditi, becomes the eater of all this, and everything becomes his food.

"He thought,   'If I kill him,   I shall be making very little food."

We are to be told in this very chapter how this creation can be explained as the food of desire.   Concerning this,   if this   "babe"   were to be killed before he matured into an adult with its natural desire for further creation then the cycle of creation as food would cease,   "making very little food".
He,   Hiranyagarbha,   vital force,   death or Tamas is but a quality in the balance of the   Gunas   Those energy qualities form,   mature and sustain all aspects of material creation.   All things which come into being will develop according to the knowledge of the Absolute.   The Babe, will grow and mature according to its nature or knowledge.   The babe, as a seed as it were,   needs to grow to full potential to realise the desired purpose of the seed.

"Through that speech and that mind he projected all this,   whatever there is the Vedas Re, Yajus and Saman,   the metres,   the sacrifices,   men and animals".

He,   the babe,   Viraj,   the first born being with body,   mind and speech   (knowledge)   he is the one whose ongoing desires create   (project)   the Universe,   "whatever there is",   (rites and rituals,   worldly knowledge and laws...men and animals etc.)

Indeed we will hear in verses 1.4.6-14 of the further creation of ignorance and desire of this Viraj or the first born or the self.   Through needing   (desiring)   a meaningful reality in his transient universe he will project a hierarchy of gods,   the cast system,   and   "divine"   laws   (Dharma)   to support his need to flourish.

"Whatever he projected,   he resolved to eat.   Because he eats everything,   therefore Aditi (Death) is so called".

Death is the inevitable conclusion of all of the material Universe ("he eats everything").   Of the balance of energies that are Rajas,   Sattva and Tamas   ( or Aum) can be considered in terms of the "life" of the Universe)   it is the final rising of Tamas (or the reaching of the "M" in Aum) that measures (eats) or causes the dissolution of all material.

"He who knows how Aditi came to have This name of Aditi,   becomes the eater of all this,   and everything becomes his food".

We have come to see that whatever has been projected is due to the desires of the ignorant man.   Therefore all will be seen by him as being for his consumption.   This ignorant being will be the knower or the one who now understands only this.   This being will see the fruits of knowledge and creation as the fruits of his own desires,   as all his own reward.

 

1.2.6   He desired, 'Let me sacrifice again with the great sacrifice'. He was tired, and he was distressed. While he was (thus) tired and distressed, his reputation and strength departed. The organs are reputation and strength. When the organs departed, the body began to swell, (but) his mind was set on the body.

"He desired, 'Let me sacrifice again with the great sacrifice'".

Shankara's Bhashya confirms that the words   "Let me sacrifice again"   refers to his   (he who desired)   performing of the horse sacrifice in a previous life.   We should consider the horse sacrifice depicted at the beginning of this Upanishad,   and again alluded to with the birth of Viraj in verse 1.2.3   above to be this same sacrifice.   Viz :-
...So this Prana (Viraj) is divided in three ways. His head is the east, and his arms that (north-east) and that (south-east). And his hind part is the west   and so forth.
From the material of this universe symbolically aligned as the horse sacrifice the material form or body of Viraj   (the babe)   was projected.
Now with this verse and the next verse (7.)   we are being told how   "his"   ongoing desire for the world at the end of his life   ("He desired, 'Let me sacrifice again")   causes   "his"   rebirth into the creation cycle.
Quite literally it is this one,   Viraj,   who has not yet relinquished desire that is being depicted as once more desiring to remain in the world symbolised by the ritual of the horse sacrifice.
This Upanishad was started with the words   "Om.   The head of the sacrificial horse is the dawn, its eye the sun..."   As stated this verse and the next verse are once again describing through the symbol of the horse sacrifice ritual how desire for the world is the cause of   (further)   Creation.

There is an intended additional meaning within this description of the Ashvamedha,   horse sacrifice ritual.   This time "He" the ageing and weary first born or Viraj,   for whom the ritual is being once again performed,   practices meditation in the forms of imagining and reflecting.   This meditation is meant to gain a higher rebirth   (higher Consciousness)   described as that of a god for the practitioner (Viraj),   this will have relevance in the beginning of section Three.

"He was tired, and he was distressed".

It was this "He" who was the projector   (cause)   of the material universe.   It was "He" whose desires were depicted through the Sacrificial horse and described in verses 1-6 of this section beginning with the words

      :- "He created the mind,   thinking,   'Let me have a mind.'"   and ending in verse (5.)   With the words

      :- "He who knows how Aditi came to have This name of Aditi,   becomes the eater of all this...etc."

It was described how this being of material creation was destined to face the jaws of death once born into the creation cycle

        :-   "When he was born, (Death) opened his mouth (to swallow him)"

Here we have now reached this time.   Death,   hunger or Tamas,   the quality of measure,   is bringing to an end "His" material form.   But,   once again we are hearing of his desire to regain his material stature through repeating the horse sacrifice.

"While he was (thus) tired and distressed,   his reputation and strength departed.   The organs are reputation and strength".

His   "reputation and strength"   means the power he wielded through his living being to satisfy his own desires.   A body is made up of living organs.   At death the organs fail and die (depart)

"When the organs departed,   the body began to swell"

This is well known.   When the body dies the material of the body starts to decompose back to basic elements,   back to earth.   This decomposition involves gasses and swelling etc.   This swelling of the body is dwelt on here to maintain the symbolism of the sacrificial horse,   the Sanskrit name for horse incorporates the description swollen body.

"(but) his mind was set on the body".

It is here that the ignorance of this being reaches its unfortunate fruition   (Self Realisation,   the means of escape from the cycle of death and rebirth,   has not been achieved due to that ignorance).   It is through ignorance that man mistakes creation for a permanent thing and it is ignorance that keeps him from seeing and understanding the reality,   or indeed the lack of reality,   of the things around him.   It is the ignorance of duality that causes a man to seek material gain to increase the substance of his being.   The same duality gives him the desire for status and reputation,   these are all to empower him to superiority over others to save him fearing them.   All this is the nature of duality.
When such a man feel his power draining,   which of course it inevitably will,  that is when he will feel   "distressed".   This is because all he has and all he can envisage is invested in the material organ of the body.   In his ignorance all he can understand is the material creation of things and that all he is,   is his body and mind,   "his mind was set on the body".   At the end of this life or the end of creation the Sages tell us that according to what we know or what we love or what we have realised in Consciousness is basically what will guide us   (the Consciousness)   then.   We can only know that our true Self   (Consciousness)   is immortal and of the Absolute Consciousness.
This material man   (Viraj)   in question who has continuing material desires within duality,   only knows,   loves and desires the world.

 

1.2.7   He desired, 'Let this body of mine be fit for a sacrifice, and let me be embodied through this,' (and entered it). Because that body swelled (AsVat), therefore it came to be called Asva (horse). And because it became fit for a sacrifice, therefore the horse sacrifice came to be known as AsVamedha. He who knows it thus indeed knows the horse sacrifice. (Imagining himself as the horse and) letting it remain free, he reflected (on it). After a year he sacrificed it to himself, and dispatched the (other) animals to the gods. Therefore (priests to this day) sacrifice to Prajapati the sanctified (horse) that is dedicated to all the gods. He who shines yonder is the horse sacrifice; his body is the year. This fire is Arka; its limbs are these worlds. So these two (fire and the sun) are Arka and the horse sacrifice. These two again become the same god, Death. He (who knows thus) conquers further death, death cannot overtake him, it becomes his self, and he becomes one with these deities.

"He desired, 'Let this body of mine be fit for a sacrifice, and let me be embodied through this,' (and entered it)"

Here the one who   "was tired, and he was distressed"   (experiencing the death of his material form)   desired to regain his material grandeur through the ritual of the horse sacrifice.   So desiring rebirth through this ritual   "let me be embodied through this",   his meditations were on his desired rebirth through his identifying with the horse   "(and entered it)",   thereby,   in Consciousness,   placing his faith in the duality of these rites and rituals to have his desires fulfilled.

"Because that body swelled (AsVat), therefore it came to be called Asva (horse)"

As explained previously the swelling of his dead body is described to identify him with the sacrificial horse.

"because it became fit for a sacrifice, therefore the horse sacrifice came to be known as AsVamedha. He who knows it thus indeed knows the horse sacrifice".

The meaning is this ritual of the horse sacrifice symbolises the performers desire to maintain and increase his worldly material wealth and status.   His desire for his body to become fit for sacrifice (through the sanctified horse) confirms that he sees the material form as being the reality of existence and the source for the attainment of his desires.

"(Imagining himself as the horse and) letting it remain free, he reflected (on it)"

In verse 4. previously we had   :-
      "He (Death) reared him for as long as a year,   and after this period projected him",   :-
that was a reference to the horse sacrifice.   Correspondingly in this horse sacrifice ritual the horse is allowed to roam free for up to a year.   The year of roaming symbolises the sun circling the world which symbolises this ritual as gaining the world.   This verse also describes his   "imagining"   and   "reflected(ing)"   which means meditating on himself as the horse while it roams free.
The meaning is,   this performer of the horse sacrifice ritual identified himself with the horse,   the year, and the deity "sun".   Through this meditation   "he"   will achieve a higher rebirth   (Consciousness)   as that deity   (sun).

"After a year he sacrificed it to himself, and dispatched the (other) animals to the gods".

Sacrificed it to "himself"   means Viraj,   the first born,   becomes the father of all further creation.   As the father Viraj is known as Prajapati.   Therefore Prajapati is the product of the first desire to experience worldly knowledge.
From that first desire   "He"   the energy of material Creation arose.
That material desire we named or Labelled Hiranyagarbha or Vital force.
That material of desire within the creation of desire which was Hiranyagarbha is still seen as vital force now also called Prajapati.
Prajapati or vital force or Viraj or the first born or   "himself",   is the one and same cause of the delusion and ignorance of duality.
It is to this ignorance and duality that all rites are dedicated to   "sacrificed it to himself".

The wandering sanctified horse symbolises his desire for material gain,   to the extent the horse wanders   (which will be the maturation period of a year which will be the cycle of the sun covering the world)   which in reality is the extent of his meditations on all his desires,   his gain will encompass all that   (he will win the world).
The horse sacrifice also included the sacrifice of other domestic animals.   These are mentioned here to complete the analogy.

"Therefore (priests to this day) sacrifice to Prajapati the sanctified (horse) that is dedicated to all the gods"

This Brihadaranyaka Upanishad will confirm in chapter three that all gods are mere projections of man's desire represented by a vital force of desire.
The meaning is the vital force   (material universe)   is caused by and depends on desire which is also embodied within rites and rituals.

"He who shines yonder is the horse sacrifice; his body is the year. This fire is Arka; its limbs are these worlds. So these two (fire and the sun) are Arka and the horse sacrifice."

Sacrificing the horse to himself,   along with other domestic animals which are included in the traditional ritual sacrifice as said,   he is now described as reborn as a deity in a reborn Creation of the universe.
So symbolically the sacrificed horse,   which has become identified with the performer of the sacrifice,   becomes the deity sun and its fire   (he who shines yonder)   and his body the universe.   Therefore this Universe and all of Creation is once more shown to be the fruit of desire.

"These two again become the same god, Death"

this is a specific referral to   "fire and the sun",   "He"   who desired   "let me be embodied through this, (and entered it)"   (the sacrificial horse),   is now reborn as the deity sun and the suns fire is his desire for creation.   As described earlier in this commentary it is desire that is hunger;   desire manifests the food of the material universe to satisfy that hunger;   material is mutable and manifests time,   time and change bring entropy and death;   "These two again become the same god, Death",   (That is, the reborn deity   "sun"   and his desire   "fire").

"He (who knows thus) conquers further death" death cannot overtake him, it becomes his self, and he becomes one with these deities".

It is central to the teaching of the Vedas that the practice of rites with desire (sacrifices and so forth)   only leads to a rebirth (Consciousness) within the creation cycle.
The meaning of   "He (who knows thus)...death.... becomes his self"   refers to he who practices the horse sacrifice as being the "He" in,   "He who knows thus".   "He" is the one who has forgotten the truth of his identity with the Non-Dual Absolute   (Self),   so he will not surrender the desire for his material form believing it to be his "self".   "His" form being material,   is mortal and represents inevitable death.   "Death"   (material vital force of desire)   ... becomes his self".   Which means his true being in Consciousness is limited to a Consciousness of rebirth within the creation cycle   "conquers further death".

The meaning,   or the full understanding that we are meant to gain from all this,   is that,   if he were to consciously allow death to overtake his form,   if "he",   his true being in Consciousness were to surrender desire   (symbolised by the horse sacrifice),   he would remember and Realise his true identity with the Non-Dual Absolute,   God,   Brahman.   Though this Self Realisation he   (his true being in Consciousness)   would transcend the material universe of the sacrificial horse and he would return home to immortal union with Absolute Consciousness.

Through the above descriptions of the Creation cycle we have seen the rebirth of ordinary beings and the rebirth of beings into higher Consciousness described as gods or deities.

Further comment :-
The wise Sages who fully realise the transience of the material world and see the duality that gives rise to ambition and fear and that the only happiness is the kind that comes with corresponding sadness,  these are the Sages that Know of the Non-Duality,   the Singularity that is the Absolute.   These Realised ones rest in the Knowledge of the Absolute and have surrendered all desires.   These Realised ones have truly conquered further death because after the death of their form   (body)   their only desire in Consciousness is of love for the Absolute.   Remaining at rest,   as One with the Absolute they will return no more to experience birth and death.

We have clearly been told that the material Universe exists in name and form only.   If all of Creation returned to a "melting pot"   as it were,   then reformed it would all   "reform"   from the very same energy of Existence,   differing in name and form only,   but this time in reality,   the material of the sacrificial horse would be diluted across the Universe as the components of many planets,   just once again differing in name and form.

It has been demonstrated that all of the material universe is transient,   that is from the moment of manifestation it moves with time towards death.

It has been demonstrated that as the Created rises and falls nothing new comes into existence and nothing disappears from existence.   The same cycle is repeated.

It has been demonstrated that it is desire alone that moves Knowledge into manifestation as material.

It has been demonstrated that the whole of creation came through   "That"   that divides itself and that   "That"   is the unity of Knowledge in Consciousness that is the Absolute.

Clearly the Realised Sages have seen the Truth that it is Absolute Knowledge and Consciousness Alone that has True Existence and That is the substratum and support for the rise and fall of Creation.
It is this Singularity of the Absolute that enables and guides desireless meditation back to the Realisation of that Singularity.

 

 

Section 3.

During the course of the previous section we had described for us two classes of   "reborn"   beings.   The first was reborn through desire with the practice of rites alone  (horse sacrifice),   the second was reborn through desire with the added practice of meditation,   ("reflecting" on the horse sacrifice ritual).
Of these two classes of beings or Consciousness,   one is a worldly Consciousness the other being is described as a god,  (understood by us to mean higher Consciousness attained through meditation).
While the previous section concerned the desire for Creation this section displays the deepening ignorance of duality through claiming the benefits of one's actions due to identification with one's material form as being ones true "self".

Because we are still considering the sons of that first born who,   due to their conscious experience of birth,   have now forgotten their true identity as the Non-Dual Divine Absolute or God or Brahman,   what is divine is now seen as their very form with its   "life"   force.   This life,   this form,   this being,   is seen as being   "who they are"   as it were.   The form of their body is seen as their reward for their individual work and therefore they are enabled,  as it were,   by a divine   Vital Force.   This will be demonstrated by the following allegory along with the perils of continuing desire and attachment to material form   (body).

 

1.3.1   There were two classes of Prajapati's sons, the gods and the Asuras. Naturally, the gods were fewer, and the Asuras more in number. They vied with each other for (the mastery of) these worlds. The gods said, 'Now let us surpass the Asuras in (this) sacrifice through the   Udgitha

The term   "Prajapati's sons"   refers to those that have attained rebirth (sons)   due to the practice of rites,   rituals   and meditation   (by Prajapati as a symbol of the Father)   and is a direct reference to the subject matter of the previous section.   Rebirth into the Consciousness (world)   of gods indicates the benefit of practicing rites with meditation.   Rebirth into the Consciousness(world)   of men indicates the results of practicing rites alone is the understanding here.
In this first verse we hear of the struggle for supremacy between enlightenment and ignorance   "They vied with each other for (the mastery of) these worlds. "

The story of Prajapati is told in the Chandogya Upanishad.   The Asuras were those who regarded their body and form as their true selves and revered it as such.   Due to this ignorance the Asuras are classed as acting through evil,   (because all actions resulting from self serving interest are prone to the effects of evil).

The story in brief is repeated here for reference :-


Wise Prajapati declared that all who knew Brahman attained the world and all desires.   Indra leader of the gods and virochana leader of the demons heard this.   Both approached Prajapati asking to be told this knowledge.   Prajapati told them to practice austerities for thirty two years then he would tell them.   After thirty two years Prajapati told them to look in the mirror and describe what they saw.   They both said the body then Prajapati said that body is the Self.   Indra and Virochona accepted this and left. Virochona told all his people,   the Asuras,   that the body was Brahman and if they served it with all their attention it would give them all they desire.   Therefore the Asuras remained ignorant of any higher understanding.   Virochona has mistakenly accepted the material Brahman,   residing in the world,   as the Absolute Brahman.
But,   Indra reflected and thought if this body is the self how does it also suffer as I suffer?   This can't be right so he returned to Prajapati.   After living austerely for another thirty two years Prajapati said The self was He who was master in his dreams.   Indra again reflected and thought that master in my dreams is unreal and not always immune so that cannot be right.   Indra again returned to Prajapati who after another five years finally revealed to Indra who had now devoted his whole life meditating to gaining this truth,   that the self is the Ear of the ear,   the Eye of the eye, and so forth.

One meaning of this story is that knowledge of the Divine or the Absolute cannot be passed on in words only.   The statement:- "But Indra reflected.."   has great significance and should be noted.   One has to meditate to gain proper understanding of the information that is just words.
The reader should also remember the lesson of virochana who seized the first words of Prajapati without further contemplation.   This unrealistic assumption by virochana that such rare knowledge could be so easily attained and without further effort only showed his lack of proper discrimination which maintained his fatal Ignorance.


The sacrifice principle has continuing relevance here as we shall understand.   'This body and mind for the use of the Absolute alone'   is a relevant meditation for this section.

 

1.3.2   They said to the organ of speech, 'Chant (the Udgitha for us.' 'All right,' said the organ of speech and chanted for them. The common good that comes of the organ of speech, it secured for the gods by chanting, while the fine speaking it utilised for itself. The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and struck it with evil.' That evil is what we come across when one speaks improper things.

The setting for this allegory is again the horse sacrifice ritual and the   "Chant (the   Udgitha)"   is performed as a component of that ritual.
The one cause of all error or evil is action through duality.   The being that we know as "me" is in reality a reflection of The Absolute.   The appearance of separateness is due to the senses reporting material and form only and does not take into account higher knowledge or understanding of the Absolute.
If you believe "I" is other than The Absolute and is a personal asset for your use then that duality creates and reinforces the evils (ignorance)   that arise from duality,   they include desire,   pride,   fear   and working for gain.

The faculty of speech (and all other faculties)   is 'bestowed' by God through the material   (form)   of creation,   (because God is the Speech of speech,   or the Ear of the ear and so forth).
At Gods instigation,   Gods image (you) utilises Gods faculty (speech).
Performing the action required of you is to serve God.
Serving God is serving all,   by definition.
But,   if the action is not let go of,   if claim or benefit is retained for   "I"   then   "I"   becomes   "I am a good speaker", etc.   Consequently   "I"   becomes attached to this false identity with its form and become prone to the evils of duality   (struck with evil).

Here this organ of speech ignorant of its true Non-Dual identity produced the benefit of the work but claimed the means of the work,   its form,   for itself.   This act of duality and ignorance left the organ prone to being struck with evil.   Whenever the faculty of speech is used for ones own benefit (improperly)   it can be contaminated with evil,  is the meaning.

 

1.3.3   Then they said to the nose 'Chant (the Udgitha) for us.' 'All right,' said the nose and chanted for them. The common good that comes of the nose, it secured for the gods by chanting, while the fine smelling it utilised for itself. The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and struck it with evil. That evil is what we come across when one smells improper things.

The Nose also suffered the ignorance of duality.   Speaking in terms of Consciousness which is the One true form of Existence,   That form which we have (symbolically)   named nose is in reality   "I"   If   "I"   performed its task,   using the form 'nose' then returned to being   "I"   alone,   that would be true detachment.   But in the allegory of the organs,   as here,   "I"   as the nose still claims for itself the form and identity Nose.   That is it seeks to use the "fine smelling" for its own pleasure,   and in effect says   "I am this fine smelling"   which has the evil of attachment and is a delusion of duality that the Asuras use to affect the actions of the nose with evil.   We will see this delusion allowing the contamination of evil in the remaining organs.

 

1.3.4   Then they said to the eye, 'Chant (the Udgitha) for us.'   'All right' said the eye and chanted for them. The common good that comes of the eye, it secured for the gods by chanting, while the fine seeing it utilised for itself. The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and struck it with evil. That evil is what we come across when one sees improper things.

The eye also suffered the ignorance of duality.   The faculty of seeing was claimed as personal identity and for my worldly benefit.   This act revealed the eye's   ignorance of its true identity. A delusion which made it vulnerable to the corruption   (evil)   of the Azuras.
Attachment to ones form and its subsequent misuse through delusions of identity causes the forgetting of ones true self.   It follows that those afflicted with an increasing deficit of more noble knowledge become unfit for their proper work,   unfit meaning that this organ or individual person depending on what meaning you take from this allegory,   becomes unfit for its own duties because it is not aware of its own true identity.
On an individual level this person seeing his form as his true self and separate from others,   will act through self interest to satisfy his own ego.   All this to the detriment of his duty and his own true self.

 

1.3.5   Then they said to the ear, 'Chant (the Udgitha) for us.' 'All right,' said the ear and chanted for them. The common good that comes of the ear, it secured for the gods by chanting, while the fine hearing it utilised for itself. The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and struck it with evil. That evil is what we come across when one hears improper things.

"The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them"

The meaning of this sentence is that if this chanter   (the ear)   chanted the Udgitha free of all personal desire and attachment the chanter would achieve higher Consciousness   (the status of a god)   (ceremonial chanting is meditation with rites which leads to a higher rebirth   (Consciousness)   into a world of gods)   risking the Azuras being outnumbered.
This refers to the statement in verse 1. above,   :-   "Naturally, the gods were fewer, and the Asuras more in number.   They vied with each other for (the mastery of) these worlds".
But the ear also chanted through attachment to its material form and suffered the evil of duality so will experience rebirth   (Consciousness)   as man   (The Asuras).

 

1.3.6   Then they said to the mind, 'Chant (the   Udgitha) for us.' 'All right,' said the mind and chanted for them. The common good that comes of the mind, it secured for the gods by chanting, while the fine thinking it utilised for itself. The Asuras knew that through this chanter The gods would surpass them. They charged it and struck it with evil. That evil is what we come across when one thinks improper things. Likewise they also touched these (other) deities with evil, struck them with evil.

The ritual chanting for the sacrifice was assigned to the mind.   But again,   as with the previous organs the chanting was not done without attachment.   The mind continued with the assumption that its form was its true being.   Therefore as before the Azuras  "charged it and struck it with evil"

"Likewise they also touched these (other) deities with evil"

The meaning of this sentence is :-
Because the mind is the master organ,   being the controller of all these other organs,   when the mind becomes deluded by duality   "while the fine thinking it utilised for itself",   that evil touches all that the mind controls.   "Likewise they also touched these (other) deities with evil"   The mind itself needs to be watched and controlled at all times to prevent it from assuming one's identity.   Further,   all of ones senses need to be kept under the control of that controlled mind.

If the sense organs and so forth realised the mind as their inner controller,   as it were,   then they would not fall prey to evil through assuming themselves to be autonomous   (not part of Unity).
Taking the organs of this allegory to represent beings that regard themselves as individual then realisation for them would be of their Unity through their inner controller,   as it were,   as being the same   "self"   of all.   That is,   a divinity that is common to all and greater than themselves.   Ultimate Realisation of course would be of the reality of the Absolute Non-Dual Self or God.
It is the mind that sees duality through the senses that becomes attached to false identity and desire.   This is the reality and this is the meaning here.

For clarification of the next verse,   the description "vital force" is given to the material creation that responds to conscious desire but has no desire or individual form of its own.   This means that if the organs of the body such as speech or an individual person,   were free of ego then any instruction received, such as chant the Udgitha,   would not be claimed by the form of a pure person.   The natural gifted ability to perform such action would be achieved without claim.  
But to the being with an ego that thinks "I" am this or "I" am that,   then that ego gets in the way and assumes a vital force   (material creation)   for its own gain.   The being seeking gain within creation is prone to evil through his delusion of duality.

 

1.3.7   Then they said to this vital force in the mouth, 'Chant (the Udgitha) for us.' 'All right,' said the vital force and chanted for them. The Asuras knew that through this chanter the gods would surpass them. They charged it and wanted to strike it with evil. But as a clod of earth, striking against a rock, is shattered, so were they shattered, flung in all directions, and perished. Therefore the gods became (fire etc.), and the Asuras were crushed. He who knows thus becomes his true self, and his envious kinsman is crushed.

The vital force is just a name of a concept,   being only material creation in general,   (here air or prana)   and common to all forms,   (having no individual form),   but assumed by the being deluded through duality to form his own self.
The vital force arose from that first desire for worldly knowledge and the desiring for his form to continue to flourish in life.   Even then the vital force does nothing,   it does not act by itself.   Consequently any such vital force,   or Creation itself,   would be naturally free from acts of evil.   The meaning is that a vital force is material form used to enable conscious desires,   having no individual existence itself it has no desires or attachments.

"residing in the mouth"

Air or prana will be moved through the organ of speech to chant the   Udgitha   in accord with divine or conscious will.   But if air or prana   "vital force"   were taken by an organ of speech to fulfil a "personal"   motive then it would be used wrongly,   forcefully,   through personal effort.   this is delusion or   Maya   because it is seen as a force supporting   "me and my"   needs.
Speech could assume (take) a vital force,   the nose could assume a vital force,   the eye could assume a vital force,   the ear could assume a vital force, and the mind itself could assume a vital force but the vital force cannot assume itself because it is already purely an assumption of the mind deluded through duality   (in reality).

"He who knows thus becomes his true self"

This understanding is central to the purpose of this section.
He who knows and understands that his material form is not who he truly is in reality does not get deluded into revering his form.   This being of higher understanding realises that his true identity transcends material creation.

"his envious kinsman is crushed"

Due to natural detachment,   the material forms of creation or the vital force will be unmoved by temptation or other acts of duality (evil).   Therefore the vital force was as a   "rock"   when struck by temptation (the Asuras).   This symbolically destroyed the power of evil (the Asuras).
The envious kinsman is the uncontrolled senses that tempts one into the duality of desire,   symbolised here as the Azuras.

"Therefore the gods became (fire etc.)"

Realising their forms to be merely the material of creation these organs could once again take their proper place within the material creation   "became (fire etc.)".

The true   "self" of all beings is the divine Absolute Self.   The Self Realised sage Transcends the material realm and becomes conscious of his true home as one with Consciousness Absolute.

 

1.3.8   They said, 'Where was he who has thus restored us (to our divinity)? '(and discovered): 'Here he is within the mouth'. The 'Vital Force' is called Ayasya Ahgirasa, for it is the essence of the members (of the body).

"Where was he who has thus restored us   (to our divinity)"?

The divinity referred to here is the divinity of higher Truth,   of their true being.   Previously these entities believed their material form to be who they were.
Seeing the material of creation or vital force as common to all forms they have realised that their form is not their true selves.

The realisation is that if the material form or the vital force is free from attachment then who is this that suffers delusion?   Who is it that has forgotten?   Who am I if not this form?

"The 'Vital Force' is called Ayasya Ahgirasa, for it is the essence of the members (of the body)"

The   Vital Force is seen as the material essence unifying all forms is the meaning here.

 

1.3.9   This deity is called Dur, because death is far from it. Death is far from one who knows thus.

Death here refers to the evil of attachment.   "One who knows thus"   is one who does not suffer the delusion of believing that his form gives him an identity and claim as an individual,   therefore his actions are free from  ("far from") attachment ("evil, death").

 

1.3.10   This deity took away death, the evil of these gods, and carried it to where these quarters end. There it left their evils. Therefore one should not approach a person (of that region), nor go to that region beyond the border, lest one imbibe that evil, death.

"This deity took away death"

To take away death in this meaning is to free the individual from identification with the form and senses,   "the evil of these gods"   (Not the ultimate freedom of Self Realisation).

"carried it to where these quarters end"

This means to where the truth of the Vedas is not known.   outside the land of the Vedas.

"Therefore one should not approach a person (of that region)".

This specifically warns not to associate with those attached to the material world and ignorant of their true self.   "Lest one imbibe that evil, death".

 

1.3.11   This deity after taking away death, the evil of these gods, next carried them beyond death.

Through higher understanding they are freed to take up their proper place in material Creation.   The vital force as a support of material creation is the carrier.

"next carried them beyond death".

A vital force or material form can be said to be the carrier of all beings experiencing an earthly birth.   All beings desirous of worldly knowledge are born into creation with a form.
Until the being remembers or realises his true identity with the Non-Dual Absolute he will be carried through the cycle of experiencing birth and death.
Eventually the Absolute will be realised in Consciousness and the true being of this form will return home to that Absolute.   At the time the true being rests as the Absolute the material form will not be again taken up.   It could be said the material form carried the being beyond the evil of this creation of duality.

 

1.3.12   It carried the organ of speech, the foremost one, first. When the organ of speech got rid of death, it became fire. That fire, having transcended death, shines beyond its reach.

To "get rid of death"   is to get rid of the delusion of attachment to ones form and its actions.   once free from delusion one can take ones proper place in the material creation.

 

1.3.13   Then it carried the nose. When it got rid of death, it became air. That air, having transcended death, blows beyond its reach.

Being free from the delusion of imagining individual pleasure through their material form   (vital force)   the organs have regained their true identity and are retaking their correct places in the universe. They had lost their way originally through being attached to their own form and its pleasures.   Suffering this ignorance they could not realise that their true identity was not this material form.

 

1.3.14   Then it carried the eye. When the eye got rid of death, it became the sun. That sun, having transcended death, shines beyond its reach.

Although symbolically shown as organs of the cosmos the meaning here is that our own senses need to be kept under self control so that we do not become attached to transient material pleasures,   through over eating for pleasure for example,   so causing a forgetting of our true purpose.

 

1.3.15   Then it carried the ear. When the ear got rid of death, it became the quarters. Those quarters, having transcended death, remain beyond its reach.

Similarly Listening to malicious gossip from any person or direction would lead back to duality ignorance and evil   (attachment to form).

 

1.3.16   Then it carried the mind. When the mind got rid of death, it became the moon. That moon, having transcended death, shines beyond its reach. So does this deity carry one who knows thus beyond death.

Again the mind needs to be watched lest it assumes the function of being our true identity,   which is not its proper function because the unsupervised mind is guided only by sensory input,   which cannot reveal the higher reality of non-dual existence.   By assuming ones identity the mind gets lost in seeking transient pleasure in the material world of duality and forgets its proper function as a servant.
The   "one who knows"   as such knows sense pleasures assume material forms represent ultimate reality.   This knower is "beyond death",   that is beyond attachment to material forms and sense pleasures.

 

1.3.17   Next it secured eatable food for itself by chanting, for whatever food is eaten, is eaten by the vital force alone, and it rests on that.

The allegory of the sacrifice ritual and its rites is being maintained in this verse.   The performer of the sacrifice would traditionally be entitled to his share of the sacrifice food as payment.   Here the vital force earns its share of eatable food as its reward for completing the chanting at the sacrifice.   In reality,   this chanter is the priest.   But it is still the higher truth that the material form or body of the priest represents a vital force.   This is because vital force is the material of creation made manifest through desire.   This description also applies to the body of mankind.   The body of this priest was made manifest due to his original desire to experience worldly knowledge.
That that rests on food is of the material world,   That that is of the material world is of form only.   This material,  this vital force is revealed here to be maintained by (food) from the sacrifice.   :-
"whatever food is eaten, is eaten by the vital force alone"
Indeed it was through desire assuming a vital force,   which in turn enabled the sacrifice,   which desired the further creation that produced the food that further supports the vital force.

Creation is said to be due to the   Maya   of desire and ignorance,   But Creation is still of the Divine Absolute and all are capable of finding the way back home to that Divinity.   But,   nevertheless the vital force is of the realm of desire and ignorance and here and in the following verses the   Maya   of the vital force is described and demonstrated more clearly.

 

1.3.18   The gods said, 'Whatever food there is, is just this much, and you have secured it for yourself by chanting. Now let us have a share in this food.' 'Then sit around facing me,' (said the vital force). 'All right,' (said the gods and) sat down around it. Hence whatever food one eats through the vital force satisfies these. So do his relatives sit around facing him who knows thus, and he becomes their support, the greatest among them and their leader, a good eater of food and the ruler of them. That one among his relatives who desires to rival a man of such knowledge is powerless to support his dependants. But one who follows him, or desires to maintain one's dependants being under him, is alone capable of supporting them.

"Whatever food there is, is just this much"

This is the material food of creation.   it is   "just this much"   its availability depends on the rituals of desire for its continued creation.

"Now let us have a share in this food.' 'Then sit around facing me,' (said the vital force)"

The vital force is the material of creation.   Those who desire to thrive in creation desire to eat   of   creation.   In short all who desire in creation look to creation as a vital force to satisfy their desires (hunger).

"All right,' (said the gods and) sat down around it. Hence whatever food one eats through the vital force satisfies these"

"the gods"   are a product of the delusion of the vital force.   It will be explained by Yajnavalkya in chapter three how all gods emanate from the vital force.   The vital force as a product of duality and desire is the support for mans gods of desire,   "the vital force satisfies these."

"So do his relatives sit around facing him who knows thus, and he becomes their support"

The eater of food is the producer of food through his continual creation.   His creation of relatives look to him to provide them with further creation for their support.

"who knows thus...becomes their support..the greatest among them...their leader...the ruler of them"

The vital force is the support of the ego that desires   (hungers),   within Creation.   The man ignorant of his true identity as the Self regards his body and the material world as his wealth and uses his own power,     "his"   vital force which represents the personal desire to flourish within creation for his worldly gain.

"That one....who desires to rival a man of such knowledge is powerless to support his dependants".

This is one who does not seek or desire gain within creation,   he has surrendered all desires.
The need to feed ones desires causes further creation,   including the creation of relatives   "dependents".

This one who   "(rivals... such knowledge)"   is the Realised sage aware of higher knowledge.   This sage has surrendered desires because he has Realised the Absolute. This sage now awaits release from the creation cycle and return to the Absolute by ceasing such further creation,   "(powerless to support his dependants)"
This is the renunciation of the Sage.

 

1.3.19   It is called Ayasya Aiigirasa, for it is the essence of the members (of the body). The vital force is indeed the essence of the members. Of course it is their essence. (For instance), from whichever member the vital force departs, right there it withers. Therefore this is of course the essence of the members.

"it is the essence of the members of the body"

The ego assumes vital force to produce and maintain the material needed to realise the desire for the rebirth of this member   (organ,   body),   as such the vital force is indeed the   (material)   essence of the body.

"from whichever member the vital force departs....it withers".

One who is not misled by ego is one who will no longer be deluded through duality.   Such a one will see desires as false and ultimately meaningless.   Consequently surrendering all further desires   (and the vital force)   this One,   realising that the forms of creation lack true existence allows his presence within this creation to   "wither".
This is also the renunciation of the Sage.

 

1.3.20   This alone is also Brhaspati (lord of the Re). Speech is indeed Brhati (Re) and this is its lord. Therefore this is also Brhaspati.

This lord of prayer is invoked through Speech, the sound of duality, and the vital force as prana (breath) residing in the mouth to seek fulfilment of desires.

 

1.3.21   This alone is also Brahmanaspati (lord of the Yajus.) Speech is indeed Brahman (Yajus), and this is its lord. Therefore this is also Brahmanaspati.

Speech here sounds the prayer of the reborn Brahman with attributes   (material form)   who desires the universe. That prayer is sounded assuming a vital force.   This Universe containing all forms is the Created Universe and is ultimately unreal.   This world with the vital force from the white ant to the elephant and all other objects is the created world and is also ultimately unreal.

 

1.3.22   This alone is also Saman. Speech is indeed Sa, and this is Ama. Because it is Sa (speech) and Ama (vital force), therefore Saman is so called. Or because it is equal to a white ant, equal to a mosquito, equal to an elephant, equal to these three worlds, equal to this universe, therefore this is also Saman. He who knows this Saman (vital force) to be such attains union with it, or lives in the same world as it.

"He who knows"

means he who meditates and acts with this much knowledge and lives as such.

"He who knows this...vital force to be such attains union with it, or lives in the same world as it"

This means He who knows or believes the vital force which is this material universe and all it contains,   ("equal to a white ant, equal to a mosquito, equal to an elephant, equal to these three worlds")   to be the truth of existence,   and desires to flourish within it,   could become King of the Universe by using his material form or vital force to work for such   ("lives in the same world as it"), if this were his true desire.
But,   this universe is transient,  It is not desired by the wise who attain to the Truth of the Self.   The Absolute Brahman is the eternal reality and Truth.
The meaning here is that the freedom of emancipation and Unity with The Self can only be achieved through meditation to transcend this world,   not by desiring the world with its rites, vital force of materiality and duality.

 

1.3.23   This indeed is also Udgitha The vital force is indeed Ut, for all this is held aloft by the vital force, and speech alone is Githa. This is   Udgitha   because it is Ut and Githa.

"all this is held aloft by the vital force"

"all this"   describes this universe which was caused through that first desire;   That first desire resulted in the sound of Creation   (AUM)   into which birth was experienced which caused the forgetting of the Divine Absolute leaving only ignorance.
Such ignorance now only knows the material world so leads to the world.   We have seen how desires rely on a vital force of material to perpetuate the Creation of material,   or as stated   "held aloft" , or maintain creation.   speech sounds desire   (AUM)   and causes the fire of creation.

 

1.3.24   Regarding this (there is) also (a story): Brahmadatta, the great-grandson of Cikitana, while drinking Soma, said,   "Let this Soma strike off my head if I say that Ayasya Ahgirasa chanted the Udgitha through any other than this (vital force and speech).'Indeed he chanted through speech and the vital force".

'Indeed he chanted through speech and the vital force'.

The chanting mentioned here is sounded as part of sacrifice rites.   We have heard earlier how the vital force does not act through its own volition,   for this reason a vital force itself is immune to the evils of desire and attachment.
Considering   "Ayasya Ahgirasa chanting the Udgitha",   if it was chanted using this creation,   this life and breath of life with desire or attachment then   "Ayasya Ahgirasa"   would suffer the evil of attachment through taking creation to further his own desire.  Basicaly rites are practiced utilising prana and work to express desire,  which is what Brahmadatta is saying.
But, if as said   "Ayasya Ahgirasa"   "chanted through speech and the vital force"   alone,   simply in the performance of a duty that came before him and then surrendered all attachment he would remain free of the evils of desire and attachment.
A vital force is creation and the breath of life used with the desire to further the duality of Creation.

 

1.3.25   He who knows the wealth of this Saman (vital force) attains wealth. Tone is indeed its wealth. Therefore one who is going to officiate as a priest should desire to have a rich tone in his voice, and he should do his priestly duties through that voice with a fine tone. Therefore in a sacrifice people long to see a priest with a good voice, like one who has wealth. He who knows the wealth of Saman to be such attains wealth.

In keeping with the previous verse,   priestly duties or any duties performed by utilising ones faculties to produce only the results required by ones station are good actions and could not attract evil,   even when considering that these actions form part of the ignorance and duality of rites.   But any action,   even when undertaken for the highest good,   completed with attachment such as pride or prestige or increase in wealth shows an attachment to false worldly concerns which come with worldly evils.   One evil would be that such actions give rise to the growing belief in the importance and reality of such worldly concerns.   The evil is that such belief further covers the higher truth of the Non-Dual Absolute,   the Realisation of which is the only escape from nescience.
He who knows the vital force as wealth,   meaning he who has attained only this much understanding,   believing his material form to be his true identity and somehow to be the result of his own greatness,   he can attain worldly wealth is the meaning.   But this understanding of vital force or the material of creation as wealth is still only the fruits of desire and ignorance here,   not the realising of the Self

We offer this understanding as an explanation for the true support of a "good" voice:-
He who has surrendered all desires and so realised the Absolute,
will be unmoved by any material or worldly consideration.
His very being will be at rest as the Self,   his voice will reveal no tremor.
Being at ease his body will be free from tension,   the full range of his voice will resonate freely.
Knowing himself to be purely an instrument of God there will be no distractions due to vanity,
The voice will be perfectly steady and focused on its work.
Speaking Gods words only, the sound will come effortlessly from the centre of his being and will have natural authority.
One who knows the Absolute,   knows true love.   Love is heard in the voice.

 

1.3.26   He who knows the correct sound of this Saman (vital force) obtains gold. Tone is indeed its correct sound. He who knows the correct sound of Saman to be such obtains gold.

The meaning here is he who meditates for a result,   in this case a good voice, May produce that desired result,   because gold represents the attainment of the object of desire.   be it gold or a good voice.   But meditation with material desire will realise only material,   he will not realise the transcendent Self.

 

1.3.27   He who knows the support of this Saman (vital force) gets a resting place. Speech (certain parts of the body) is indeed its support. For resting on speech is the vital force thus chanted. Some say, resting on food (body).

"He who knows"
(only understands or meditates on such)   the vital force as carried by speech or other instruments of work,   that is,   the forms of creation,   will find his rest within material creation.

"Some say, resting on food (body)".

The material body rests on material food.   All material is transient.   His resting place will also be transient,   until he knows the Absolute he can have no eternal rest

 

1.3.28   Now therefore the edifying repetition (Abhyaroha) only of the hymns called Pava-manas. The priest called Prastotr indeed recites the Saman. 'While he recites it, these Mantras are to be repeated: From evil lead me to good. From, darkness lead me to light. From death lead me to immortality. When the Mantra says, 'From evil lead me to good',   'evil' means death, and 'good' immortality; so it says, 'From death lead me to immortality, i.e. make me immortal'. When it says, 'From darkness lead me to light', 'darkness' means death, and 'light', immortality; so it says, 'From death lead me to immortality', Or make me immortal. In the dictum, 'From death lead me to immortality', the meaning does not seem to be hidden. Then through the remaining hymns (the chanter) should secure eatable food for himself by chanting. Therefore, while they are being chanted, the sacrificer should ask for a boon, anything that he desires. Whatever objects this chanter possessed of such knowledge desires, either for himself or for the sacrificer, he secures them by chanting. This (meditation) certainly wins the world (Hiranyagarbha). He who knows the Saman (vital force) as such has not to pray lest he be unfit for this world.

"From evil lead me to good".

We are told that "evil" means death. This Upanishad also takes death as being all forms of ignorance that will cause a fall away from the Divine into materiality and transience.

"From, darkness lead me to light".

Likewise here darkness is the lack of true knowledge that prevents a seeker from finding the way.   The light would come from being shown this knowledge.

"From death lead me to immortality".

In this and the previous verses   "immortality"   means higher rebirth or Consciousness due to these meditations with rites.
As has been stated elsewhere,   we are told proper understanding of the reality of the Absolute leads to release from the cycle of birth and death.   The cycle itself being caused by the forgetting of the Absolute in the first place.

"This (meditation) certainly wins the world (Hiranyagarbha)".

The performer of these meditations and rites sees the vital force   (Hiranyagarbha,)   the vitality of the material body,   as his own and divine.   This understanding gain   "(wins)"   all material     "(the world)".

"He who knows the Saman (vital force) as such has not to pray lest he be unfit for this world".

"He" who only knows the world through a vital force   "wins"   the world of   "His"   desires,   that is all of his desires have been achieved therefore he has nothing left to pray for.
To pray for more could only mean to transcend his world,   that is   "be unfit for this world".   To transcend Creation means Returning home to Unity with the Absolute,   in order to achieve this he would have to surrender his vital force and his world.

The last verse of this section describes the realm and consideration of a vital force.  That vital force or Hiranyagarbha only ever has considerations within a transient realm,  it is a clear statement of the error or non-existence,  in Absolute Truth,  of a vital force.  That is,  Hiranyagarbha or vital force is only an effect of desire or need for material experience.

 

Section 4.

Concerning that first description of the beginning of this Creation in section two.   From arising within that beginning we now discuss the beginning of further material   "created"   forms.

1.4.1   In the beginning, this (universe) was but the self (Viraj) of a human form. He reflected and found nothing else but himself. He first uttered, 'I am he'. 'Therefore he was called Aham. Hence, to this day, when a person is addressed, he first says, 'It is I', and then says the other name that he may have. Because he was first and before this whole (band of aspirants) burnt all evils, therefore he is called Purusa. He who knows thus indeed burns one who wants to be (Viraj) before him.

As we have seen from section one of this chapter it is desire that leads to the experience in Consciousness of birth and creation.   That conscious experience of birth caused the further forgetting of our true identity with the non-dual Absolute or God or Brahman.   Subsequent verses of this section describe the creation of further forms due to that continuing ignorance and desire.

"In the beginning, this (universe) was but the self (Viraj) of a human form"

This Viraj was the material representation of the desire for worldly knowledge. From this material knowledge (Viraj) the material forms of the Universe were made manifest.
The meaning is this   "self"   under discussion is the "first born" Purusa or prana or Viraj.   "He" is the one who has fallen into a Consciousness of a worldly life experience due to his desires.
It is "He",   through desire that has caused the Creation of the Universe and his own material form.

"he reflected and found nothing else but himself".

This   "self"   who now has a mind and body meditated   ("reflected")   and could not distinguish any other than   "himself".   That is,   he was aware of   "himself".   only.

"He first uttered, 'I am he".

These were the first words of duality,   "I Am".   To be self aware is to be aware of the possibility of "another".
That is,   to have an ego is to be aware of boundaries.   There are no boundaries in unity,   no inside or outside.

"Because he was first and before this whole (band of aspirants)"....

"He"   was the original desire that moved Absolute Knowledge to manifestation.
This means that in terms of the Universe of Creation   "he"   is the first.
But in this Singularity of Existence there is no second desire causing a second Universal Creation.
Because   "he"   was the first this means that there can be no other,   no second,   no   "band of aspirants".   These   "aspirants"   were the possibilities that existed before the material existence of this   "He".   After   "He"   came into existence all other possibilities became non-existent,   they were "burnt".
The meaning is that because   "he"   now exists as Creation there can be no another   (Creation).

..."burnt all evils".

With the only possibility of creation   ("he")   in existence there can be duality.   The   (possibility of)   evil or duality is   "burnt"   (by his very existence).

"therefore he is called Purusa".

Being the One Non-Dual Consciousness then all experiences of birth and life are experiences of the One Consciousness.   This Consciousness of all such experiences is named   "Purusa".

This was the same Viraj or Purusa who differentiated himself in three ways, previously explained in verse 1.2.2

Once again,   the meaning is,   In Absolute Consciousness You desired to experience worldly knowledge through the Universe.
Your desire for a body led to your birth into the resulting universe.
The event of your birth has caused the forgetting of your true identity as that Absolute.

"He who knows thus indeed burns one who wants to be (Viraj) before him".

"He" who now knows desire was the first to desire, this material creation is the result of "his" desire, "he" will maintain this material creation for the time being through his further desires.
This means that until his desires cease,   so allowing this Creation of his own manifestation to cease,   he must logicaly remain as the first  "born"   ("Viraj").   This means his very existence as   "Viraj"   or the first makes it, as said, logically impossible for there to be another first also within existence,  or,  this first "burns"  the possibility of there being another "first".

 

1.4.2   He was afraid. Therefore people (still) are afraid to be alone.   He thought, "If there is nothing else but me, what am I afraid of?' From that alone his fear was gone, for what was there to fear? It is from a second entity that fear comes.

"He was afraid".

Fear comes from the forgetting of one's true identity and unity with the Absolute.   Believing ones ego or form to be ones real "self" causes the ignorance of duality and fear to rise.

"Therefore people (still) are afraid to be alone".

The reason for their fear is the very reason for their continued material existence.   "People"   have still not come to realise their true identity as the Non-Dual Absolute.   When   "People"   realise the Absolute Self they no longer fear or desire or take up new forms after death.

"If there is nothing else but me, what am I afraid of"?

He asked the question   "what am I afraid of"?   but due to his forgetting of the non-dual Absolute he assumed his fear must come from another,   or something else.
His assumption was based on the ignorance of duality.   This was described as there being   "nothing else but me".   This assumption highlighted his fall into the ignorance of duality.   the seeing of   "no other"   might temporarily   overcome his fear,   but what needed to be understood was that fear only appears to be caused by the delusion of   "another".   In truth fear comes from his feeling incomplete due to his forgetting of Absolute Unity.

"for what was there to fear? It is from a second entity that fear comes".

This second asking by the Sruti of the same question   "where does fear come from"   with the same answer fear comes from a   (delusional)   "second entity"   is saying that the answer given here is not complete.
As described above,   fear does not really arise just from   "another"   but from one's feeling incomplete due to one's forgetting of one's true Non-Dual identity with The Absolute.   That is,   fear arises from the seeing of duality and all the possibilities that would arise from that delusion.

 

1.4.3   He was not at all happy. Therefore people (still) are not happy when alone. He desired a mate. He became as big as man and wife embracing each other. He parted this very body into two. From that came husband and wife. Therefore, said Yajnavalkya, this (body) is one-half of oneself, like one of the two halves of a split pea. Therefore this space is indeed filled by the wife. He was united with her. From that men were born.

"He was not at all happy".

To attribute unhappiness to being alone is also a delusion of duality,   His Unhappiness was due to the forgetting of his original completeness united with the Divine as the One Self.

"Therefore people (still) are not happy when alone".

(As in the previous verse),   the reason for their unhappiness is the very reason for their continued material existence.   "People"   have still not come to realise their true Divine identity as the Non-Dual Absolute.   When   "People"   realise the Absolute Self they no longer fear or feel unhappy   (desire material happiness)   or take up new forms after death.

"said Yajnavalkya, this (body) is one-half of oneself, like one of the two halves of a split pea".

The worldly experience which was the desire of this first born has been achieved through his birth into creation as man.
Mankind consists of men and women,   male and female, husband and wife.   The functional experience of life as mankind requires both male and female.   Likened by Yajnavalkya to a split pea which completes the fertile seed,   husband and wife complete each other materially as mankind.
But due to this forgetting of the Self the ignorance of duality persists.   In this ignorance he sought completion through an image of his self (wife) in the belief that fulfilment can be found in the transient material of creation.

"Therefore this space is indeed filled by the wife".

Through the worldly gain of a wife he was indeed materially complete.
Through feeling complete he believed further creation through offspring would lead to true happiness.

Consider,   How could an exact copy of a being unhappy because something is forgotten produce happiness?   Through dividing a being ignorant of his true self where is the happiness to be found?   The resultant attempts to produce more could not produce true lasting happiness.

 

1.4.4   She thought, 'How can he be united with me after producing me from himself? Well, let me hide myself'. She became a cow, the other became a bull and was united with her; from that cows were born. The one became a mare, the other a stallion; the one became a she-ass, the other became a he-ass and was united with her; from that one-hoofed animals were born. The one became a she-goat, the other a he-goat; the one became a ewe, the other became a ram and was united with her; from that goats and sheep were born. Thus did he project everything that exists in pairs, down to the ants.

"She thought' How can he be united with me after producing me from himself"?

Their previous physical union is known due to their descendants,   but she realised that true completeness could not result from the uniting of the identically incomplete,   (She and her Husband)

"Well, let me hide myself"

Her attempts to hide herself were unsuccessful.   She being as identically incomplete as he she also suffered the ignorance of duality.   Repeatedly and unsuccessfully his wife symbolically sought refuge within the material forms of Creation instead of seeking the way back home to unity with the Non-Dual Absolute,   this symbolically explains the further diversity in creation.

 

1.4.5   He knew, 'I indeed am the creation, for I projected all this'. Therefore he was called Creation. He who knows this as such becomes (a creator) in this creation of Viraj.

As the creator of the fruits of his desires  (the universe and all it contains) he imagined himself satisfied.   All who are satisfied in this way are condemned to seek fulfilment through birth and creation   "become a creator".

 

1.4.6.   Then he rubbed back and forth thus, and produced fire from its source, the mouth and the hands. Therefore both these are without hair at the inside. When they talk of particular gods, saying, 'Sacrifice to him', 'Sacrifice to the other one', (they are wrong, since)   these are all his projection, for he is all the gods. Now all this that is liquid, he produced from the seed. That is Soma. This universe is indeed this much food and the eater of food. Soma is food, and fire the eater of food. This is the super-creation of Viraj that he projected the gods,   who are even superior to him.   Because he,   although mortal himself,   projected the immortals,   therefore this is a super-creation. He who knows this as such becomes (a creator) in this super-creation of Viraj.

The allegory of the sacrifice ritual is maintained in the language and symbols within this verse.   the symbol of fire and liquid as creative elements,   and soma,   the drink of the presiding priest symbolically contains the seed for what will be the desired benefit of the sacrifice.

"produced fire from its source,   the mouth and the hands"

Mans means of creating   (symbolised by "fire"   )   the material of his desires are achieved through his mouth   (speech)   and his hands   (work).   This is a statement that this universe or Creation was projected to satisfy the hunger of desire of this husband and father that sees himself as a "creator",   this has been explained.

"Sacrifice to him",   "Sacrifice to the other one"   is wrong since   "These are all his projection, for he is all the gods."

This is the "he" who was afraid to be alone.   He felt incomplete due to his original forgetting of Absolute Unity. He has imagined and assuming a "vital force" projected the gods   "for he is all the gods"   who are illogically superior to himself.   The creation or projection of gods by the father or Viraj is extra to this   "original"   Creation that arose through his original desire that placed him within creation,   (caused by his original desire with rites.)   this is being explained.

For reference,   This verse and   Brihadaranyaka Upanishad 3.9.9 "'Which is the one god?' 'The vital force (Hiranyagarbha)"   explain the same meaning.

"Now all this that is liquid, he produced from the seed. That is Soma"

In keeping with the symbology of the sacrifice ritual the liquid soma   (symbolically)   contains the seed that manifests the results of the rites with desire.   The liquid soma represents the unmanifest knowledge (seed) of the object of desire.
From that seed of knowledge desire manifests itself in the forms   (material,   water, or   "liquid")   of Creation.
The meaning here is to confirm that all of creation comes from the desire of this man and father residing within the Creation of his original desire   (now forgotten through his birth).   His ongoing creation includes the creation of his gods.

"This universe is indeed this much food and the eater of food. Soma is food, and fire the eater of food".

The created universe is the manifest material forms of desire,   this has been explained.   "fire"   is the fire of creation through desire and it is that hunger of desire that is the   "eater"   of material creation   ("food").

"this is a super-creation....of Viraj...he projected the gods...who are even superior to him.   Because he,   although mortal himself,   projected the immortals"

This further creation this   "super creation"   is a superimposition by he who sacrifices to   "his projection",   his "super creation",   of gods seeking social prestige and gain to fulfil his ongoing need for completion.   The meaning is,   man,   due to his forgetting of his Divine unity,   needs to project an   (apparent)   immortal reality in this transient and ultimately unreal material creation.

"He who knows this as such"

Means he who meditates or contemplates on this as being the truth.

"becomes (a creator) in this super-creation of Viraj"

Those that see reality in this material creation are ignorant of the non-dual Self so become engrossed in work   (becomes a creator)   seeking fulfilment within this false extra creation of man's gods, rites and rituals.

The meaning is that man's gods are a projection of his needs and desires.

 

 

The Shruti now takes a third look at that one beginning of Creation described in section two.  The last mantras of this section importantly reveal higher knowledge.  Material existence is explained as consisting entirely of the same undifferentiated substance.   When difference is detected by the senses that difference is of name and form only.   Those forms with names or labels are all composed of the same substance or energy of existence.   Therefore nothing in creation has any individual reality.   No thing truly exists as "itself".   The Sruti speaks directly of the only reality being The Absolute Non-Dual Self.
First is described the forms of beings.

1.4.7.   This (universe) was then undifferentiated. It differentiated only into name and form it was called such and such, and was of such and such form. So to this day it is differentiated only into name and form it is called such and such, and is of such and such form. This Self has entered into these bodies up to the tip of the nails as a razor may be put in its case, or as fire, which sustains the world, may be in its source. People do not see It, for (viewed in Its aspects) It is incomplete. When It does the function of living, It is called the vital force; when It speaks, the organ of speech; when It sees, the eye; when It hears, the ear; and when It thinks, the mind. These are merely Its names according to functions. He who meditates upon each of this totality of aspects does not know, for It is incomplete, (being divided) from this totality by possessing a single characteristic. The Self alone is to be meditated upon, for all these are unified in It. Of all these, this Self alone should be realised, for one knows all these through It, just as one may get (an animal) through its footprints. He who knows It as such obtains fame and association (with his relatives).

"This (universe) was then undifferentiated."

This Creation or universe has eternal existence,  in reality,  as the pure undifferentiated Knowledge that is the Non-Dual Absolute.

"It differentiated only into name and form it was called such and such, and was of such and such form"

When the Creation of the Universe comes into being or is made manifest the Knowledge that is the Singularity of the Absolute differentiates in Consciousness to project the appearance,   or the experience,   of name and form.

"This Self has entered into these bodies up to the tip of the nails as a razor may be put in its case"

By using an example of a razor and its case or fire as the one source of all it produces to compare the relationship,  as it were,  between the Absolute Self and the material form of a being the Sruti is allowing some  "relaxation"  in its wording to get it's meaning accross.  Relaxation in the accuracy of Sruti description is needed here because comparison through example can never be entirely accurate.  In reality the non-dual unmoving Self or Absolute does not actualy  "enter into"  any other thing.  Apart from the non-dual  (Advaita)  Absolute no other form or  "thing"  exists.
A being or person has a name and body.   That is,   this creation is made up of name and form,   water is liquid and so forth.   But,  in reality all of this Creation consists of the Absolute Self   (that is Absolute Knowledge).   All forms or names are but a projection,  in consciousness,  of the One Non-Dual Absolute Self.   The intention here is to explain that all forms contain,  as it were,   or in fact are the One Non-Dual Self.   So,  a razor   (the self)   may fit tightly into its case   (the form)   but the razor and its case and any little gaps are in reality just names and forms of the one all pervading Absolute Self.

"People do not see It, for (viewed in Its aspects) It is incomplete".

"It"   is the Absolute Self,   God,   Brahman.   The reality of the singularity of existence as described above cannot be seen or detected by any of the senses because the senses only   "hear name"   and   "see form".   The senses are also just the same differentiated knowledge of the Absolute,   they are part of the play of Maya of the Absolute.   Names and forms and the senses that report them as being as such are not the complete or true reality is the meaning.   The Absolute Singularity that is the Self is all this but One cannot see OneSelf.

"When It does the function of living, It is called the vital force; or when it speaks the organ of speech or... the eye or... the ear or... the mind. These are merely Its names"

The meaning is that all of the apparent separate parts of creation are merely names and forms of the same Self.  That is,   for example there is the principle or existence of hearing,   this hearing principle is the knowledge of the Self.  The Self is the  "Ear"   of all the projected ears of Creation.  When we hear something the real hearer is the "Ear"   of the ear.   Ultimately this self is really  "The Self".   The Self is the One Self of all the selfs of Creation.   We may name a function   "speaking"   for example,   but in reality it is the Absolute Self just knowing,   being the knowledge in Consciousness that is Speaking, or Hearing or Living as it were.   All names all forms all functions are the One Self Existing as all things.

"He who meditates upon each of this totality of aspects does not know, for It is incomplete, (being divided) from this totality by possessing a single characteristic".

The meaning is plain.   It would be illogical to assume one understands the reality of existence by contemplating separate objects of creation.   It would be the equivalent of meditating on a shadow as being the totality of the real thing.   To meditate on a vital force or speech and so forth is to meditate on the delusion or Maya of this transient Creation.   It is unreal and incomplete therefore cannot lead to the real.

"this Self alone should be realised, for one knows all these through It"

It is said by the wise,   and it is also the meaning here that to Realise the Absolute Self is to Realise the truth of all things.   Or to know the One is to know all.

"just as one may get (an animal) through its footprints."

The empty footprints of the animal prove the existence of the animal that created them.
The animal itself may be unknowable until found,   but its existence is known.
This Universe of forms all empty of unique existence is itself proof of the existence of the Absolute Self as the Knowledge that   "causes"   as it were,   all forms.

"He who knows It as such obtains fame and association (with his relatives)"

He who knows   "It",   means he who has realised the Absolute primal unity of Brahman or the Self knows of his identity   ("association")   with   "It",   and all beings   ("his relatives".)

 

1.4.8.   This Self is dearer than a son, dearer than wealth, dearer than everything else, and is innermost.   Should a person   (holding the Self as dear)   say to one calling anything else dearer than the Self,   "(What you hold) dear will die"   he is certainly competent (to say so) it will indeed come true. One should meditate upon the Self alone as dear. Of him who meditates upon the Self alone as dear, the dear ones are not mortal.

"This Self is dearer than a son"

Dearer than all in creation is the Upanishad meaning.   This continues the subject from the previous verse of all names and forms being but the Absolute alone.

"(What you hold) dear will die"

When one sees the form of a beloved son one should know that all that can be held is a form with a name produced from the transient dust of creation and that it will die,   just as the forms called Mother and Father will die.

"who meditates upon the Self alone as dear,   the dear ones are not mortal".

The meaning of this sentence is that he who has realised the Self sees the same Self in all forms,   True love is the love of the Absolute Self.   It is the Divine Absolute that is loved not the form.   What is truly seen is not mortal.   The form is mortal but the Absolute that is loved is immortal.   The light of life that is the son is the One Self alone.

Through meditation and realising of the Absolute Self it will be known that what is truly loved is the Self seen more clearly through higher knowledge and known to be eternal.

 

1.4.9. They say: Men think, 'Through the knowledge of Brahman we shall become all'.   Well, what did that Brahman know by which It became all?

This verse elegantly displays the contrast between being in ignorance of the Absolute and being in the light of the Absolute.

"what did that Brahman know by which It became all?"

The mind of the ignorant man is clad in natural desires. When told of God or Brahman this ignorant man of good intention,   seeks to understand or gain Gods knowledge in order to be virtuous in achieving his planned success.
But it is the truth that The Absolute itself is unknowable.   The Absolute Brahman,   through Grace can only be known of,   through its empty footprint,   the "empty" forms of Creation,   as it were.   The knowledge that is the Absolute Brahman cannot be known in advance or by itself,   The knowledge that is the Absolute can be known only by what is being manifested now,   this Existence in the present moment.

"Through the knowledge of Brahman we shall become all".

The mind of the enlightened man seeks,   as it were,  to realise God alone.   It is through this knowledge or Realisation of the Divine as being Non-Dual that the enlightened become all through that Realisation of their own Non-Dual identity with  "all"  as the Absolute Brahman.

"They say:"

The Absolute Brahman alone is Absolute Knowledge Complete.
The Absolute Brahman is without beginning unchanging and immortal.
Brahman   "Is"   and does not   "Become".
Brahman knows no-thing but is all Knowledge.

The meaning here is to explain again that which arises due to the Truth of the primal singularity of Existence.
The Absolute alone Exists.   Non-Dual,   Unmoving,   Undesiring Truth Consciousness and Bliss.
All else that appears,   is a projection in Consciousness of man's desire.

 

Continuing with the description of the beginning of Creation from section two,   with this fourth consideration the Sruti now describes man's creation of the gods and man's division of "other" men into Casts or class,  both to enable his own desire to flourish.

1.4.10   This (self) was indeed Brahman in the beginning. It knew only Itself as, 'I am Brahman'. Therefore It became all. And whoever among the gods knew It became That; and the same with sages and men. The sage Vamadeva, while realising this (self) as That, knew, 'I was Manu, and the sun' And to this day whoever in like manner knows It as, 'I am Brahman 'becomes all this (universe). Even the gods cannot prevail against him, for he becomes their self. While he who worships another god thinking, 'He is one, and I am another' does not know. He is like an animal to the god. As as many animals serve a man, so does each man serve the gods. Even if one animal is taken away, it causes anguish, what should one say of many animals? Therefore it is not liked by them that men should know this.

"This (self) was indeed Brahman in the beginning".

This Brahman is the Brahman with the attributes of mind,   body and organ.  This Brahman is the first born of a vital force of material desire that resulted from that original desire for mind and body,  this is the Absolute Brahman known through the Maya of creation.  This Brahman has been described as only knowing itself,   here it knows itself as   "I am Brahman".
The   "self"   of this verse is the being clothed in the material of manifest desire,   the form of a vital force or Hiranyagarbha,   the projected individual first born   "self"   within Creation.
The Absolute Brahman or Absolute Self is all Knowledge and is Existence Itself.   The Absolute Self is without origination,   without beginning.

"It knew only Itself as, 'I am Brahman".

The Absolute Brahman does not know itself because Itself is all there is   (Being all there is there is no differentiation,   no "itself" and anything else,   there is no duality)
This   "self"   is the first born Brahman,   being the first there is no   "other".

"Therefore It became all"

The Absolute Brahman being immortal is of necessity immutable,   Being immutable the Absolute Brahman is unchanging and does not   "Become".
This Brahman that in the beginning   "became all"   is the first born   "self"   that   "became all"   ("This" Universe).   The meaning is,  this universe was projected   ("therefore it became all")  due to his ("it") being a vital force of original desire for worldly experience.   That desire is causing his ongoing need for a wife and further creation.

To clarify the above,   this mutable Brahman with attributes that knows itself was the first born Brahman or Viraj or Prajapati,   an individual   "self",   he is the One who desired.   This will be further clarified in following verses   (viz.verse 11.   "Being one, he did not flourish, He specially projected an excellent form....)"   as we will see he has further desires   (to flourish).  

"whoever in like manner knows It as, 'I am Brahman' becomes all this (universe)".

"It"   was the first born Brahman with attributes of desire therefore all   "This"   is that Brahman,   The Self.
He who Realises   "It"   the first born Brahman as being all this and "It's" line back to the Primal Singularity of existence be it the sage Vamadeva or any of the Prophets will know themselves as   "all things".   That is they will realise themselves as "I am (That) Brahman",   I am the Absolute.   Further to this   :-

"The sage Vamadeva, while realising this (self) as That, knew, 'I was Manu, and the sun'.....whoever in like manner knows It as, 'I am Brahman' becomes all this (universe)".

The statement that a Self Realised person becomes all through the knowledge of the Self is well known in the scriptures and is used in many places throughout the Upanishads.
The meaning is based on the fact that all that Exists is but The Absolute Brahman.  So, in the true sense of this there is no actual changing in Existence through becoming all because there is no other such existence other than Brahman,   The Self.   Therefore Brahman is   "All"     ,   "All"   is The Existing Reality.
So when   "The sage Vamadeva"   or the   "gods....sages....and men"   "become all"   that becoming is that concerning Knowledge,   awareness,   Consciousness,   and Maya only.
The Absolute Brahman who is all this,   including   "The sage Vamadeva"   is eternally unchanging.   Therefore the term   "becomes"   when describing the unreal state of mortality of being is a convenience of language and references Consciousness only.

Whether this   "self"   was Viraj,   or Brahma,   or a first or a reborn sentient being he may seek return home to the unity and the knowledge of the Absolute,   or he will seek worldly knowledge and through the forgetting that he is the Absolute Non-Dual Brahman risk fall into duality and ignorance   (of the unity that is the Absolute Brahman).

"Even the gods cannot prevail against him, for he becomes their self".

Referring to the Self realised sage,  such as Vamadeva above,  having gained or remembered his true non-dual identity with the Absolute,  the sage is freed from his false world of duality with its imagined gods and so forth.
The meaning is,  Rites rituals and gods or divas are seen to be merely a part of the unreal world of his previous ignorant self.

"While he who worships another god thinking, 'He is one, and I am another' does not know".

He does not know the Non-Dual Absolute who forgets his identity with the first born and with the Absolute,   which is the reality of his Non-Dual Self.
As described before,   it is this forgetting that causes this man to imagine or project or create the gods,   thereby imagining duality.

"He is like an animal to the god. As as many animals serve a man, so does each man serve the gods".

The meaning of this sentence is that   "He"   becomes a slave,   an unknowing   "animal"  to his own projections of duality,   "them",  gods and so forth.

"it is not liked by them that men should know this"

This verse describes the difficulty the fallen man of ignorance faces in regaining his freedom from his desires.   The truth of the Non-Dual Self is further covered within his false   "super creation"   of gods and casts.   In this respect the gods of his own creation are denying him the seeing of that truth.

 

In the following verses we will see worldly desire and ignorance due to duality lead the descent into further creation.   This will be the superimposition of gods and the division by name into different castes   (Ksatriya etc.)   onto creation.   The "super creations" of duality due to the ignorant have previously been   described above in verse 6 of this section.

1.4.11   In the beginning this (the Ksatriya and other castes) was indeed Brahman one only. Being one, he did not flourish. He specially projected an excellent form, the Ksatriya those who are Ksatriyas among the gods: Indra, Varuna, the moon, Rudra, Parjanya, Yama, Death, and liana. Therefore there is none higher than the Ksatriya. Hence the Brahmana worships the Ksatriya from a lower position in the Rajasuya sacrifice. He imparts that glory to the Ksatriya. The Brahmana is the source of the Ksatriya. Therefore, although the king attains supremacy (in the sacrifice), at the end of it he resorts to the Brahmana, his source. He who slights the Brahmana, strikes at his own source. He becomes more wicked, as one is by slighting one's superior.

Being described for us here is the desire and ignorance that projected a mistaken   "super creation"   of gods and casts.   (The allegory of the sacrifice ritual is still being maintained).

"In the beginning this (the Ksatriya and other castes) was indeed Brahman one only".

This   "beginning"   refers to the subject of the previous descriptions of   "the beginning".   In those descriptions as here,   the Prajapati or Brahman that knows himself,   or Viraj,   the first born,   is this Brahman that being alone   "one only"   is not happy and desires to flourish.   Previous descriptions of the beginning have   (symbolically)   explained his desire for wife and offspring.
Here we are being told of his desire to flourish.   The meaning of   "In the beginning this ..Ksatriya..other castes was indeed Brahman.."   is that the castes did not exist in the beginning except as the unmanifest desire of this Brahman born into the creation of his desire.

"Being one, he did not flourish "

But,   he desired to flourish through the use of worldly knowledge.   This fall into desire with the need to flourish gave rise to further evils of duality.   It is confirmation that we are indeed talking of the first born "Brahman" with attributes of need and desire.
To   "flourish"   here means the need to fulfil ones purpose,  that is to gain the benefit of ones work or rites and rituals.   Having forgotten his divine unity with the Absolute Brahman this one now seeks a reality and purpose in material life.   Despite the evidence of the mortality of all things around him he has imagined his gods and endowed them with immortality   :-
("Because he,   although mortal himself,   projected the immortals".   1.4.6)

Now he is described as projecting his desired society through which he will satisfy his need for purpose in his life,   (because he has,   for the moment,   forgotten his true purpose of finding his way back home to unity with the Absolute Brahman).
remember,   The Absolute Brahman or Self or God has no needs,   does not know desire therefore does not need or desire to "flourish"

"He specially projected an excellent form, the Ksatriya.... Therefore there is none higher than the Ksatriya.... Hence the Brahmana worships the Ksatriya"

This error,   this ignorance of duality caused him to imagine or create or project a society of Casts of devas and people through which he could   "flourish".   That is,   he wished to construct a reality through which he could work and find purpose.   The actual reality is that he is further losing himself in the delusion of material duality.
This is all due to his having forgotten   (in Consciousness)   his true identity as the Absolute Singularity. It is explained here that this Brahman or Viraj assuming himself as a Brahmana projected the   "Ksatriya"   who although are superior to all they ultimately defer to himself due to his being their source.

"He imparts that glory to the Ksatriya. The Brahmana is the source of the Ksatriya Therefore, although the king attains supremacy (in the sacrifice), at the end of it he resorts to the Brahmana, his source."

This explains that although the king is superior to this Brahman in the sacrifice rituals at the end of the Ritual the king should acknowledge and defer to this Brahman as the source of the   "Ksatriya"

"He who slights the Brahmana, strikes at his own source. He becomes more wicked, as one is by slighting one's superior."

This explains that this first born Brahman who first projected the   "Ksatriya",   who are superior to himself,   Ultimately he retains status because they should nevertheless defer to himself.   If they failed to do so then they become   :-

"more wicked...by slighting one's superior".
This understanding describes the working of dharma which supports the environment within which he can materially flourish.

 

1.4.12   Yet he did not flourish. He projected the Vaisya those species of gods who are designated in groups: The Vasus, Rudras, Adityas, Visvadevas and Maruts.

This one desiring to flourish and gain through creation next projected the Vaisya and the gods of the Vedas.   The Vaisya are the means to gaining wealth.

 

1.4.13   He did not still flourish. He projected the Sudra caste Ptisan. This (earth) is Pusan. For it nourishes all this that exists.

His desire for substance was not satisfied through his creation.   He further created the Sudra caste Ptisan desiring to further enhance his "creation".

 

1.4.14   Yet he did not flourish. He specially projected that excellent form, righteousness (Dharma). This righteousness is the controller of the Ksatriya. Therefore there is nothing higher than that. (So) even a weak man hopes (to defeat) a stronger man through righteousness, as (one contending) with the king. That righteousness is verily truth. Therefore they say about a person speaking of truth, 'He speaks of righteousness', or about a person speaking of righteousness, 'He speaks of truth', for both these are but righteousness.

We can assume that through his original projection of the Ksatriya the framework of his society could be contested by them,   that is,   due to his understanding through duality he feared them,   as duality fears all "others".   So next he projected   "that most excellent form",   Dharma,   Righteousness.
Righteousness is a powerful force within any organised society.   Those people with their understanding based on duality are naturally conscious in a fearful way of the opinion and judgement of others.   They fear being judged wrong because it will weaken or reduce their stature,   or worse it will make them vulnerable to attack.   Conversely they could pride themselves,   feel superior to others through being righteous.   So a king would hesitate to be seen to dismiss the righteous claims of even a beggar.
So what is being described in this verse is the power of righteousness to impose and reinforce the appearance of reality and permanence onto this creation.   But in Truth all material Creation is transient,   therefore ultimately delusional and dependent entirely on desire.

We are to understand that this desirous being based his social structure and classes on their practices of rites and ritual to flourish.   The ultimate ignorance of this understanding will be explained in the following verses.

 

1.4.15.   (So) these (four castes were projected) the Brahmana, Ksatriya, Vaisya and Sudra. He became a Brahmana among the gods as Fire, and among men as the Brahmana. (He became) a Ksatriya through the (divine) Ksatriyas, a Vaisya through the (divine) Vaisyas and a Sudra through the (divine) Sudra. Therefore people desire to attain the results of their rites among the gods through fire, and among men as the Brahmana. For Brahman was in these two forms. If, however, anybody departs from this world without realising his own world (the Self), It, being unknown, does not protect him as the Vedas not studied, or any other work not undertaken (do not). Even if a man who does not know It as such performs a great many meritorious acts in the world, those acts of his are surely exhausted in the end. One should meditate only upon the world of the Self. He who meditates only upon the world called the Self never has his work exhausted. From this very Self he projects whatever he wants.

"Therefore people desire to attain the results of their rites among the gods through fire, and among men as the Brahmana".

So through his superimposed divisions of duality with its divinity of gods, dharma and social systems this first born Brahman has the means to flourish relative to others as an individual.   The projections of his desires enable his ambitions to improve himself   (seeking gain)   through his practice of rites and rituals for status and worldly power.

"If, however, anybody departs from this world without realising his own world (the Self), It, being unknown, does not protect him"

"This world"   means this transient delusional creation and construction of   (false)   reality that has all proceeded from "his" first desire.
"his own world"   means the Eternal Non-Dual Absolute Self,   Brahman,   God,   ("the real world",   as it were.)
If he has not meditated and studied   (the Vedas)   and come to remember and realise the reality of his true "self" identity and Unity with The Absolute Self which is   "his own world   (the Self)",   if The Absolute has not been Realised in Consciousness by him he remains unprotected from the evils of duality, even after death.
The meaning is that by maintaining his understanding of duality with its desires,   he maintains a Consciousness of desire.   The Consciousness of desire will seek to repeat the life experience of working to flourish.
Only a Self Realised Consciousness will remain with the stillness of the Absolute after the death of his form.

"those acts of his are surely exhausted in the end"

This is because all within Creation including actions and their results are transient,   finite and become exhausted.
That is,   his creation of castes and so forth will all come to an end   "exhausted in the end"   because they are based on the delusion of material duality,   that is,   they do not take into account the reality of the Absolute Self,   Brahman,   God.

"He who meditates only upon the world called the Self never has his work exhausted"

Through study and meditation the realised Sage gains the understanding and knowledge of the Non-Dual Self.   This Sage becomes one with the true Self,   This work leads back home to the Absolute,   eternal and inexhaustible.

"From this very Self he projects whatever he wants".

To commit one's meditations to the divine Absolute Self or Brahman or God is to surrender one's ideas of individual self.   To attain the Absolute through meditation is to   "want,"   as it were,   the world of the Absolute.
One projects what one desires,   he who desires the Absolute projects his path to the Absolute.

 

1.4.16   now this self (the ignorant man) is an object of enjoyment to all beings. That he makes oblations in the fire and performs sacrifices is how he becomes such an object to the gods. That he studies the Vedas is how he becomes an object of enjoyment to the Rsis (sages). That he makes offerings to the Manes and desires children is how he becomes such an object to the Manes. That he gives shelter to men as well as food is how he becomes an object of enjoyment to men. That he gives fodder and water to the animals is how he becomes such an object to them. And that beasts and birds, and even the ants, feed in his home is how he becomes an object of enjoyment to these. Just as one wishes safety to one's body, so do all beings wish safety to him who knows it as such. This indeed has been known, and discussed.

"This self   (the ignorant man)"

The scriptural meaning of ignorance is ignorance of the Absolute Self,   Brahman,   God   the only real ignorance.

"is an object of enjoyment to all beings".

  This ignorant man may be most beneficial   (giving enjoyment)   to all being in all worlds.   He may be a Benefit through religion,   medicine,   science,   art,   selfless philanthropy,   family and so forth.   Such a person,   of benefit to all would improve the happiness,   safety and well being of his own and other beings lives.   But the previous verses have demonstrated to us the transience of all worldly deeds,   even those performed by the man of good intentions.
For as long as he is unaware of his true Self no work done in creation,   even that benefitting creation will enable the attainment of his true being,   his eternal Self.   THAT that is eternal,   the Truth of oneself can only be provided for by the Absolute Self.   It is through the knowledge of the Absolute and the subsequent Realising of the Self in Consciousness that eternal protection   (Truth)   is attained.
We are repeatedly told that this Self should be meditated on and Realised above all.   This is the meaning here.

 

The meaning is,   mankind does not find its true home and identity with God through flourishing within this material world.

 

1.4.17   This (aggregate of desirable objects) was but the self in the beginning the only entity. He desired, 'Let me have a wife, so that I may be born (as the child). And let me have wealth, so that I may perform rites'. This much indeed is (the range of) desire. Even if one wishes, one cannot get more than this. Therefore to this day a man being single desires, 'Let me have a wife, so that I may be born. And let me have wealth, so that I may perform rites'. Until he obtains each one of these, he considers himself incomplete. His completeness also (comes thus) The mind is his self, speech his wife, the vital force his child, the eye his human wealth, for he obtains it through the eye, the ear his divine wealth, for he hears of it through the ear, and the body is its (instrument of) rite, for he performs rites through the body. (So) this sacrifice has five factors the animals have five factors, the men have five factors, and all this that exists has five factors. He who knows it as such attains all this.

This verse highlights the reality that this material realm is the sum of all desires,   there is nothing else.   Man's body houses,   as it were,   the source of all desires.   Therefore,   all further desires are obtained through the organs of his body.   Further to this,   the material of the universe and the organs of the body represent the limits of all possible desire.   The creation cycle produces no more than this.   He who consciously desires all this attains all this.

"This (aggregate of desirable objects) was but the self in the beginning the only entity"

This is the first born consisting of the body and its organs that were the objects of his first desire,   "desirable objects".
Because he was   "the only entity"   is also confirmation that all that has been described above as projected,   such as the gods and castes and so forth are merely the continuing workings of the desirous,   needy minds of mortal men of flesh and blood.

"He desired, 'Let me have a wife, so that I may be born (as the child)."

The man ignorant of his unity with the Non-Dual self sees reality in the duality of creation and is subject to the natural desires of that duality.   The desire of this man is to fulfil his purpose,   understanding only duality and material gain he seeks wife and son so that he might be judged successful through that son and wealth.
Also as the "only entity" and considering the reality of non duality, whatever is further created is merely an extension of himself ("that I may be born (as the child)".

"let me have wealth, so that I may perform rites".

The wealth, as said is to perform rites to gain or maintain a high place in his society with further wealth to enable the fulfilment of continuing desires.   these   "rituals"   also mean the social rituals of education,   work,   wealth,   progeny,   status and so forth.

"Until he obtains each one of these, he considers himself incomplete"

The higher meaning of the Sruti is not that this man feels incomplete due to a logical deduction that he needs wife,   child,   and wealth.
Incompleteness,   or the need to feel complete,   comes from his original forgetting of his true completeness as being One with the Absolute Self,   that ignorance is always the cause and error of seeking that missing divine completeness through material creation.

"His completeness also (comes thus)"

We are about to have the organs of the body explained as the means of attaining completeness. This is describing the completion of his original desire to experience worldly knowledge through a body. The desires of this ignorant man for completeness are all satisfied through his material senses and organs.   Therefore he judges completeness through his material being.   This is to remind us that he is still in ignorance of his true Divine completeness with the Absolute Self.

"The mind is his self",

The man that is driven by desire is the man controlled by the senses which guide the mind,   unsupervised by the higher knowledge of his true Self.

"speech his wife",

Through his wife a man obtains his desire for a son.   Also it is through speech man sounds the name of the object of his desire,   so through speech as well as a wife man obtains his worldly desires.

"the vital force his child",

The vital force is the material creation being moved to manifest material desire.   A child is the product of his desire.   A vital force is the material product of his desire.
Through his son his desire to live on is realised.   Through a vital force his further desires are realised.

"the eye his human wealth, for he obtains it through the eye",

Through the sense of sight man sees objects of desire.

"the ear his divine wealth, for he hears of it through the ear",

Through his hearing,   knowledge (Vedas) are heard.   The ignorant man of good intention accept she knows the Divine having heard the words.

"the body is its (instrument of) rite, for he performs rites through the body".

Chanting,   oblations to the fire and so forth are performed by this man of desire seeking to flourish.

Returning again to the allegory of the sacrifice ritual,   we have described for us the five factors of being,   Mind,   Speech,   Eye,   Ear and Body.   He,   who being in ignorance of his true self and the unity of the Absolute Self,   imagines he is completed through his knowledge of the means of material gain can attain to the whole material world.
But,   the truth is,   this man can have,   procreate,   own this whole universe but due to the forgetting of his true being as the Absolute Self he cannot yet attain liberation from the creation cycle and return home to unity with the Absolute.

In this section we have had described to us the growth or population of mankind.   This population has proceeded through the line of the first born who desired worldly knowledge.
The desire and need of this first born mortal has been to create a society and reality to cover his feeling of   "something missing"   and to deny the truth of material entropy and ultimate unreality of the Universe and its forms.
This need for further creation arose from his and his line of children's   (us)   forgetting of our true eternal identity with the Non-Dual Absolute which transcends this material universe.

 

Section 5.

The ritual of the horse sacrifice was for gain.   Subsequent sections of this chapter have explained or demonstrated that the results of meditation with rites   (desire)   lead to a repeated experience of birth into a material world,   (gain the world).
Now we consider for the sake of further meditation the Universe of the reborn as consisting of seven types of food to satisfy that original hunger or desire which took and ate divine knowledge for his own use,   and as such he is the father of his creation.   That is,  :-

This Universe was caused by desire.   Therefore this Universe is the food of desire.   This is being explained.

 

1.5.1   That the father produced seven kinds of food through meditation and rites (I shall disclose). One is common to all eaters. Two he apportioned to the gods. Three he designed for himself. And one he gave to the animals. On it rests everything what lives and what does not. Why are they not exhausted, although they are always being eaten? He who knows this cause of their permanence eats food with Partake (pre eminence). He attains (identity with) the gods and lives on nectar. These are the verses.

"The first"   of the seven kinds of food that is common to all eaters is the general material creation as food.
"The two"   he apportioned to the gods are oblations to the fire,   symbolic offerings to the gods etc.
"Three"   he designed for himself are speech,   mind and prana or vital force.   (Here these three represent the totality of a sentient being).
"One"   he gave to the animals is milk,   (symbolising mother's milk).
These seven kinds of food represent the totality of Creation.

"Why are they not exhausted, although they are always being eaten"?

Creation is maintained by the desire of the ignorant man,   the eater (father),   this has been explained.   So long as there is desire then so long will Creation   as food,   continue.

"He who knows this cause of their permanence eats food with Partake (pre eminence)"

The father,   the creator through desire from whose knowledge as such Creation as food is caused will naturally be the pre-eminent eater because this is the food of his desire.   This is discussed further in the next verse.

 

1.5.2   'That the father produced seven kinds of food through meditation and rites' means that the father indeed produced them through meditation and rites. 'One is common to all eaters' means, this food that is eaten is the common food of all eaters. He who adores (monopolises) this food is never free from evil, for this is general food. 'Two he apportioned to the gods' means making oblations in the fire, and offering presents otherwise to the gods. Therefore people perform both these. Some, however, say, those two are the new and full moon sacrifices. Therefore one should not be engrossed with sacrifices for material ends. 'One he gave to the animals' it is milk. For men and animals first live on milk alone. Therefore they first make a new-born babe lick clarified butter or suckle it. And they speak of a new-born calf as not yet eating grass'. On it rests everything what lives and what does not means that on milk indeed rests all this that lives and that does not. It is said that by making offerings of milk in the fire for a year one conquers further death. One should not think like that. He who knows as above conquers further death the very day he makes that offering, for he offers all eatable food to the gods. 'Why are they not exhausted, although they are always being eaten?' means that the being (eater) is indeed the cause of their permanence, for he produces this food again and again. 'He who knows this cause of their permanence' means that the being (eater) is indeed the cause of their permanence, for he produces this food through his meditation for the time being and rites. If he does not do this, it will be exhausted. 'He eats food with Pratika'. 'Pratika' means pre-eminence; hence the meaning is, pre-eminently. 'He attains the gods and lives on nectar' is a eulogy.

"the father produced seven kinds of food through meditation and rites"

It is a statement that the performance of rites leads to a (Consciousness of) rebirth,   which naturally leads to further creation and this creation is being described as seven types of food.

"One is common to all eaters"

This as stated is straight forward and means the material of creation that all beings rely on.

"He who adores (monopolises) this food is never free from evil, for this is general food"

The material of the universe is the general material of creation.   This material is available to all because it came as a result of the original desire to experience manifest material life.   To   "adore"   or   "Monopolise"   or in any way treasure it to prevent its being freely available to all is acting through evil   (of attachment and duality).

"Two he apportioned to the gods"

This   "means making oblations in the fire, and offering presents otherwise to the gods"

These rituals are the practices of the man of ignorance with the hunger of desire.   Ignorance   (of the Absolute)   causes the seeing of duality and the rising of need and desire.   This desire and the seeing of himself as a self sufficient creator causes him to imagine and project the gods to grant him his wishes.   The offerings and presents to these gods are his promise of continuing devotion in anticipation of their fulfilling his desires.   His desires cause further Creation to satisfy his hunger.   The specific mention of full moon sacrifice etc. refer to traditions within this duality of when it is an incorrect time for animal sacrifice and so forth.

"One he gave to the animals   it is milk. For men and animals first live on milk alone"

And   "On it rests everything what lives and what does not"

"on milk indeed rests all this".

The meaning of this sentence is twofold.   One is simply that human babies are supported by milk,   and it is humans that project or cause all material  "everything what lives and what does not"   Creation through the hunger of their desires.
The other meaning is similar in that creation is furthered by the offering of milk to the fire   (for the gods)   to conquer further death.  Milk is the food that first supports those that will grow to produce all other food so symbolically   "he offers all eatable food to the gods".
These rites and rituals are to satisfy the basic motivation of the ignorant   (ignorant of their true identity with the Absolute).   As said this ignorance causes the evil of duality and the believing that this creation is the reality.   This causes the fear of death and the desire to remain in this world so rebirth in some form is seen as conquering death.

"Why are they not exhausted, although they are always being eaten?"

As explained originally the father is the projector of this universe and all food as such   (to satisfy the hunger of desire).   The next cycle of Creation produces further "fathers" who through their meditations with rites cause further Creation   (of food)   It will also be the case that If the Father (as representing all living beings) surrendered all desires and ceased to practice rites etc. Which cause creation then the Creation cycle would cease.

"he produces this food through his meditation for the time being and rites."

It is through his meditations with material desire that the objects of his desire are created.   So long as he desires this way   "for the time being"   the act of creation will continue.   When he surrenders his desires material creation will become   "exhausted".

"He eats food with Pratika. 'Pratika' means pre-eminence"

The practice of meditation and rites reinforce the Consciousness of material reality.   Although the meditating man of good intentions gains the higher Consciousness of divine awareness   (described as that of a god)   this material Consciousness will nevertheless lead to a material existence   (rebirth)   because it is his conscious reality.   This will be the cause of his next Creation cycle of birth and death.
"for he produces this food again and again"   As such he will again be the first born and therefore the pre-eminent eater within that Creation.

 

1.5.3   'Three he designed for himself' means: The mind, the organ of speech and the vital force; these he designed for himself. (They say), 'I was absent minded, I did not see it', was absent minded, I did not hear it'. It is through the mind that one sees and hears. Desire, resolve, doubt, faith, want of faith, steadiness, unsteadiness, shame, intelligence and fear all these are but the mind. Even if one is touched from behind, one knows it through the mind; therefore (the mind exists). And any kind of sound is but the organ of speech, for it serves to determine a thing, but it cannot itself be revealed. Prana, Apana, Vyana, Udana, Samana and Ana all these are but the vital force. This body is identified with these with the organ of speech, the mind and the vital force.

"Three he designed for himself' means: The mind, the organ of speech and the vital force; these he designed for himself."

These three are said to represent   "himself"   as the being in Creation.

"(They say), 'I was absent minded, I did not see it,   hear it.   It is through the mind that one sees and hears. Desire, resolve, doubt, faith,....want of faith, steadiness, unsteadiness, shame, intelligence and fear all these are but the mind".

The functions of all the senses are described as ultimately relying on the mind for the effectiveness of their own Function.   It is the mind through cognition of information from the senses that sees how the form of the body reacts to the world.

"And any kind of sound is but the organ of speech, for it serves to determine a thing, but it cannot itself be revealed"

The organ of speech is named separately due to its functioning externally.   The organ of speech can only be known through its sound,   in silence it is unknowable.

"Prana, Apana, Vyana, Udana, Samana and Ana all these are but the vital force".

The term Vital Force   "one of the three"   foods he designed for himself means the vital force is a direct result of mans desire and imagined needs that cause further Creation (food) to be projected based upon that ignorance.   Initially the vital force is the intelligent arrangement of natural creation itself supporting the life of the one who desired.   Ultimately the vital force is grasped by the ignorant for the furtherance of their desire to flourish in life not realising that it was the cause of their ignorance and is now maintaining their ignorance.

 

1.5.4   These are the three worlds. The organ of speech is this world (the earth), the mind is the sky, and the vital force is that world (heaven).

The three worlds described in this verse relate to the three levels of Consciousness achieved through the three practices of righteousness,   rites and rituals,   and rites with meditation.
But,   all these practices nevertheless result in transmigration experience within the Consciousness of a material  (food) world.

 

1.5.5   These are the three Vedas. The organ of speech is the Rg Veda, the mind is the Yajur Veda and the vital force the Sama Veda.

These Vedas represent the knowledge and rites,   hymns and such,   that pertain to the three worlds   (of material ignorance).

 

1.5.6   These are the gods, the Manes and men. The organ of speech is the gods, the mind the Manes, and the vital force men.

"The gods, the Manes and men"

Are the said inhabitants of the respective three worlds named above in verse 4.
The world of the gods it is said is attained through the practice of rites and meditation.   the world of the manes through the practice of rites alone and the world of men through merit alone.
They are the three foods or fruits of these practices within this Creation of the vital force.

 

1.5.7   These are the father, mother and child. The mind is the father, the organ of speech the mother, and the vital force the child.

"The mind is the father"

From the mind comes the desire.

"the organ of speech the mother"

The father of desire is the mind and the mother is the speech that sounds that desire to produce the material object of desire.

"the vital force the child"

A desire   (father)   together with the declaration of that desire   (mother)   will produce the force to fulfil that desire.   The vital force is the result   "child"   of that desiring couple.

1.5.8   These are what is known, what it is desirable to know, and what is unknown. Whatever is known is a form of the organ of speech,   for it is the knower. The organ of speech protects him (who knows this) by becoming that (which is known).

Speech can only sound what materially exists or is known.   When a person contemplates the unknown he falls silent.   Speech will sound material desire preventing spiritual silence.

 

1.5.9   Whatever it is desirable to know is a form of the mind, for the mind is what it is desirable to know. The mind protects him (who knows this) by becoming that (which it is desirable to know).

"the mind is what it is desirable to know"

Likewise with the duality of what it is desirable to know.   It is through the dual mind that the ignorant desire.   The ignorant mind reinforces (protects) its ignorance through the constant recognition of further needs (desires).   Through the mind the food of desire is obtained.

 

1.5.10   Whatever is unknown is a form of the vital force, for the vital force is what is unknown. The vital force protects him (who knows this) by becoming that (which is unknown).

"the vital force is what is unknown"

The vital force arises with desire.   Desire is a need.   Needs are imagined due to our forgetting of our identity with the Absolute.   Therefore our needs or desires are to placate that which seems unknown to us.   The Vital force of material desire produces the objects of desire thereby placating or protecting the ignorance of our true Divine completeness.

"The vital force protects him (who knows this) by becoming that (which is unknown)"

This verse has great meaning.   If we were to consider an   "unknown"   as a cause for questioning or investigation by the mind then the   "unknown"   in this case could be the Truth of God or Brahman or the Non-Dual Absolute.   Certainly this chapter has discussed such ignorance.   But it is being confirmed here that any unknown or concern and so forth is quickly seen as a desire which is materially fulfilled by a vital force   "by becoming that (which is unknown)"   which means it replaces the unknown by what is known,   and the vital force only knows material Creation.
The meaning of   "The vital force protects him"   is the vital force protects the individual,   the ego and ignorance of duality from seeking and Realising the as yet unknown higher truth of Non-Duality.

The ultimate meaning of   "known, what it is desirable to know, and what is unknown"
Is that these three "states" represent all possible manifestations of duality within Creation.  Being associated with the body of the father,   which here means vital force, then the meaning is this vital force is responsible for all possible Creation.

 

1.5.11   The earth is the body of that organ of speech, and this fire is its luminous organ. And as far as the organ of speech extends, so far extends the earth and so far does this fire.

"The earth is the body of that organ of speech"

it is speech that sounds desire and with the fire of creation extends the created earth to satisfy desires.

"this fire is its luminous organ"

Fire symbolises the creation of the material world.

"as far as the organ of speech extends, so far extends the earth and so far does this fire"

This again explains Creation being extended by desire sounded by speech   "so far extends the earth and so far does this fire."

As with all of mans abilities when this organ is used for the satisfaction of desires those desires will extend creation thus far.

 

1.5.12   Heaven is the body of this mind, and that sun is its luminous organ. And as far as the mind extends, so far extends heaven, and so far does that sun. The two were united, and from that the vital force emanated. It is the Supreme Lord. It is without a rival. A second being is indeed a rival. He who knows it as such has no rival.

"Heaven is the body of this mind"

Heaven is the projection of the mind of the ignorant Father.   Just as the sun and universe are the projection of the desirous mind of the ignorant Father.

"and that sun is its luminous organ".

Through the symbol of fire the sun enables the creation of minds desires.

"as far as the mind extends, so far extends heaven, and so far does that sun".

The objects of material Creation are the food of minds desire.   That food of desire   (the universe)   will extend as far as desires extend.

"The two were united, and from that the vital force emanated".

The mind that was projected from desire along with the heaven (all Creation) is the ignorant mind that also desires further creation   (fire,   the sun)   from this mind and material creation a vital force is imagined as ones divine means of gain "from that the vital force emanated."

"It is the Supreme Lord. It is without a rival".

The description   "Supreme Lord"   here confirms the vital force as being mistaken as divine power by those ignorant of the Absolute or Brahman or God.
The ability or strength to create an environment or object to suit ones desires is seen by those who have forgotten the Absolute,   but know righteousness,   as a divine gift of power.

"A second being is indeed a rival. He who knows it as such has no rival".

The ignorance arising from the mind deluded through duality is the mistaken perception of an "Other" this leads to the delusion of rivalry.   This ignorant man who imagines divine unity through a vital force sees no rival.

 

1.5.13   Water is the body of this vital force, and that moon is its luminous organ. And as far as the vital force extends, so far extends water, and so far does that moon. These are all equal, and all infinite. He who meditates upon these as finite wins a finite world, but he who meditates upon these as infinite wins an infinite world.

"Water is the body of this vital force"

the material forms in general from which Creation is propagated arises from the waters or ocean of absolute knowledge.   Therefore this manifest material or   "water"   is the body of the imagined vital force because it is the material of knowledge through which desires and their actions cause further Creation   (food).

"and that moon is its luminous organ"

The moon represents the desirous mind of duality which maintains the projection of Creation   (food).

"as far as the vital force extends, so far extends water, and so far does that moon."

The vital force (material desire) is the product of mind (moon) and unmanifest material (water).
These three representing the father will only be limited by the limits of the fathers mind of desire.

"These are all equal, and all infinite"

These three are all dependent on each other or all dependent on the one source of desire therefore they are equal.   They are also infinite because their extent is limited only by the Creation of desire.

"He who meditates upon these as finite wins a finite world...he who meditates upon these as infinite wins an infinite world"

Meditation here means meditation with desire.   Such desires only lead back to the material world albeit limited or infinite.
To meditate on the dimensions of false worlds will only lead to (win)   those false worlds.
this one should meditate on the reality of the Non-Dual Self.

 

1.5.14   This Prajapati (Hiranyagarbha) has sixteen digits and is represented by the year. The nights (and days) are his fifteen digits, and the constant one is his sixteenth digit. He (as the moon) is filled as well as wasted by the nights (and days). Through this sixteenth digit he permeates all these living beings on the new moon night and rises the next morning. Therefore, on this night one should not take the life of living beings, not even of a chameleon, in adoration of this deity alone.

This Universe is a mortal projection from the knowledge that is the Immortal Absolute.
"Prajapati or Hiranyagarbha"   symbolises both the cause of the Universe and mankind within the Universe as being the same.
The name Hiranyagarbha,   describing the material energy of Creation,   has come to be identified within the material Universe of desire as a "divine" vital force.   It is really this vital force that is being considered in these next verses.

"Prajapati (Hiranyagarbha).... is represented by the year"

Hiranyagarbha or Prajapati,   the Father,   as the cause of this material Creation is also the cause and creator of time because all material is subject to change and change is time.

From section 2. verse 4. of this chapter we have   :-
"What was the seed there became the Year (Viraj). Before him there had been no year"
This is again described here as the Father or vital force being the year.   The year is further being depicted in terms of the waxing   fifteen digits   (days), and waning fifteen digits   (days),   of the moon as months of the year.
As both material vital force and as time Hiranyagarbha,   it is being said,   is mostly identified with all living forms through a full moon,   So it is said   :-

"on this night...not take the life...even a chameleon, in adoration of this deity alone"   :-
note that already this one who first desired and caused a material vital force of desire is being seen as Divine by his offspring due to their suffering the same ignorance as the father of forgetting of the Divine Absolute,   Brahman,   God.

"He (as the moon) is filled as well as wasted by the nights (and days)"

"He" the now ignorant man of duality measures his worth by his material possessions.   This verse describes all material,   all content,   all wealth,   all within Creation as being subject to time and change and as such   "He"   can be materially   "filled"   or   "wasted"   by the passage of time which is symbolised by the filling and emptying,   that is waxing and waning,   of the moon.

"the constant one is his sixteenth digit"

So the sixteenth,   "full"   digit or day represents the body or the vital force of this first born.
This ignorant man   (the first born has now forgotten,   is "ignorant",  of his true identity with the Divine Absolute)   regards his material form,   his body,   his   "vital force"   as his true identity,   because his ignorance means not knowing his true Self.   So,   this man who only knows himself as the body will understand or consider his body to be that which is most real and "constant".

 

1.5.15   That Prajapati who has sixteen digits and is represented by the year is indeed this man who knows as above. Wealth constitutes his fifteen digits, and the body his sixteenth digit. He is filled as well as wasted by wealth. This body stands for a nave, and wealth is the felloe. Therefore if a man loses everything, but he himself lives, people say that he has only lost his outfit.

"That Prajapati who has sixteen digits and is represented by the year is indeed this man who knows as above".

"This body stands for a nave"

The meaning of "body" in this section and verse should be understood to mean "vital force",   we have from verse 1.5.13 above :-   "Water is the body of this vital force"   (and water represents the organs of the body).
Further to this,   the three foods described here as representing the body of this first born were said to be mind, speech and vital force.   In practical terms it is the mind that desires,   speech that sounds desire and the vital force is material Creation producing the object of desire.
The meaning is that while considering the material realm one should consider the desire that maintains or upholds it.   This desire is a "vital force, it is understood by those who have forgotten their identity with the Non-Dual Absolute to be a constant force that both maintains and is their life.

"...wealth is the felloe. Therefore if a man loses everything, but he himself lives... he has only lost his outfit".

This verse refers to the transience of all material in creation,   Material possessions of man are described as the spokes and rim of a wheel (the felloe),   and as such they represent peripheral items such as wealth and possessions,   these are the clothing for the man that has forgotten his divine completeness.
This means that if a person has lost all possessions he can get   (desire)   more if he still has his body (life or vital force).

The body of the ignorant man is described as the hub of the wheel   "the nave"   and as long as the hub of the wheel,   the vital force, remains then peripheral items such as wealth can be replaced.
But it follows from this understanding that to the man who is ignorant of his true Self if the body with its vital force is lost then all is lost.

The above considerations as stated are those of the ignorant man.   This man who knows as above will feel incomplete,   naked even without his wealth and possessions.   This is all because he only knows himself as his body or mind, this is the mind of duality.

To The Realised man who knows himself in reality to be the Absolute Self it is the material body and organs that are seen to be just clothing.
That this physical presence is not the reality of our true being should be meditated upon.

 

1.5.16. There are indeed three worlds, the world of men, the world of the Manes and the world of the gods. This world of men is to be won through the son alone, and by no other rite; the world of the Manes through rites; and the world of the gods through meditation. The world of the gods is the best of the worlds. Therefore they praise meditation.

The worlds of men,   manes, or gods is understood by us to mean the Consciousness one attains through his living practices is the Consciousness that forms his understanding of the world or life he lives or relives. The path to these worlds has been described to us already in previous verses.

"The world of men",

The world of men is the world that understands duality and duty.   Seeking only to fulfil his duty to family and society,   accepting the reality of the world as he found it,   as it were,   this man maintains his level of Consciousness.

"The world of the Ancestors

The world of the manes (ancestors), is a world of the person that has acquired the wealth and reputation of a family dynasty.   Through the practice of rites and rituals this person seeks to maintain his reputation and that of his dependents.   he will hope to be famous in his line.   This is the Consciousness of manners and righteousness.

"The world of the gods

The world of the gods is the higher Consciousness of the divinity of all beings.   This understanding and Consciousness will also transcend material concerns due to understanding the lack of worth in material assets.   This will have been achieved through the practice of meditation.   A life lived in such Consciousness is more spiritual.

These worlds or levels of Consciousness have been attained by those who have not yet gained emancipation from the Creation cycle through Self Realisation,   knowledge of the Non-Dual Self.   This is the statement of the Sruti.   This will be the reason why none of these worlds is described for the Self Realised Sage.   Reference:-
"He. 0 Gargi, who in this world, without knowing this Immutable, offers oblations in the fire, performs sacrifices and undergoes austerities even for many thousand years, finds all such acts but perishable....But he, O Gargi, who departs from this world after knowing this immutable, is a knower of Brahman".   Brihadaranyaka Upanishad 3.8.10
The knower of the Absolute Self we are told achieves full emancipation from the creation cycle. The realised Consciousness becomes one with Consciousness Absolute and does not return to any of these worlds.
This Consciousness as the Absolute Self should be meditated Upon with desire from love only, to surrender to the Truth.

 

1.5.17   Now therefore the entrusting: When a man thinks he will die, he says to his son, 'You are Brahman, you are the sacrifice, and you are the world'. The son replies, 'I am Brahman, I am the sacrifice, and I am the world'. (The father thinks:) 'Whatever is studied is all unified in the word 'Brahman'. Whatever sacrifices there are, are all unified in the word 'sacrifice'. And whatever worlds there are, are all unified in the word 'world'. All this (the duties of a householder) is indeed this much. He, being all this, will protect me from (the ties of) this world. Therefore they speak of an educated son as being conducive to the world. Hence (a father) teaches his son. When a father who knows as above departs from this world, he penetrates his son together with the organ of speech, the mind and the vital force. Should anything be left Undone by him through any slip the son exonerates him from all that. Therefore he is called a son. The father lives in this world through the son. Divine and immortal speech, mind and vital force permeate him.

All men have the knowledge that they will die.   "When a man thinks he will die"   describes that time when this man relates general knowledge to personal reality.
At this time wise men seek guidance and higher understanding and through grace some attain to Self Realisation.   The Self Realised Sage knows his true self as being identical with the Eternal Absolute Self and that his body is only a form and not his true self.
Further to that,   the Sage understanding unity understands all of Creation to be transient and unreal.   To the Sage dying means the falling away of form only.   The supporting Consciousness that is true existence is eternal and unchanging.   For this reason the wise man attaches no importance to sons,   material wealth or rites.
But some men as in this example of the Father,   remain ignorant of the reality of the Non-Dual Self due to his believing Creation to have true existence and this world to be the reality.
It is this man of ignorance that desires a son to continue his line and reputation.

This verse is to describe the transmigration of the father due to his performing his scriptural duties as an householder and his ritual of   "entrusting".

"(The father thinks:) 'Whatever is studied is all unified in the word 'Brahman'..

The term   "the father thinks"   has the meaning that due to his contemplation on educating his son about Brahman the father also gains the merit of that knowledge.
The meaning is that the father,   according to his duties as an householder has taught his son the Vedas to teach him of Brahman,   this gains the world of men.

"(The father thinks:)Whatever... sacrifices there are, are all unified in the word 'sacrifice'.

The term   "the father thinks"   has the meaning that due to his contemplation on educating his son about sacrifice rituals the father also gains the merit of performing scriptural rituals.   Through this and through the son the father also gains the world of the Manes   (Ancestors).

"(The father thinks:)whatever... worlds there are, are all unified in the word 'world'".

The term   "the father thinks"   has the meaning that due to his contemplation on educating his son about the   "world(s)"   the father also gains the merit of that understanding so again,   through the merit of performing his scriptural duties as a householder and through his son the father also gains all worlds.

"is all unified in the word".

This means   "the father thinks".   that as the son repeats the words of the entrusting the son also understands   "Brahman...sacrifice...world(s) ".  

"He, being all this...."

This confirms the meaning here that it is through the dutiful father that the son has attained to all this,   the three worlds.

"will protect me from (the ties of) this world. Therefore they speak of an educated son as being conducive to the world".

So this means that the father trusts that he has fulfilled his duties as a householder   (husband and father)   by properly educating his son according to the scriptures.   The significance of this is that through this meritorious behaviour through educating a son the father will also gain the higher worlds for which the son has been educated,   (escape death   "the ties of this world".)

"When a father who knows as above departs from this world, he penetrates his son together with the organ of speech, the mind and the vital force".

This means that the three foods symbolising the essence of man,   being speech,   mind and vital force are also the very same essence of the father just as they are the essence of the son and of this very Creation of ignorance itself.   Through his Consciousness of his son that is higher due to merit,   but is still limited to the material understanding of a vital force,   this father gains a higher rebirth through that son.

 

The following three verses describe the three worlds   (levels of Consciousness)   referred to previously that are attained respectively through the Son, rites or meditation.

1.5.18   The divine organ of speech from the earth and fire permeates him. That is the divine organ of speech through which whatever he says is fulfilled.

"The divine organ of speech from the earth and fire permeates him".

The meaning here is that the father is reborn according to his conscious desires through the son and consists of three foods,   one being speech and is called divine because he has the divine vital force of the ignorant.   Through that vital force and creative power   "fire"   whatever he says   (desires)   is created.

"the divine organ of speech through which whatever he says is fulfilled".

This first example of the Fathers entrusting of duties to his Son is his actual act of teaching the son through speech and knowledge.   due to this merit the father is reborn into the world (Consciousness) of men.   The world of men is a world of ignorance and desire which is sounded by   "speech"   and   "fulfilled"   by vital force.

 

1.5.19   The divine mind from heaven and the sun permeates him. That is the divine mind through which he only becomes happy and never mourns.

As with the Fathers divine speech so here is the divine mind,   the reborn mind of the material universe.
The mind that desires   (being mindful of a vital force)   only experiences happiness through gaining its objects of desire.   Such a mind mourns what it loses but   "becomes happy and never mourns"   all the time it has the power to create   "sun"   (fire)   material desires.
The divine mind of this Father lead to the higher Consciousness of a deity is the description from the Sruti   Brihadaranyaka Upanishad 1.5.16  

 

1.5.20   The divine vital force from water and the moon permeates him. That is the divine vital force which, when it moves or does not move, feels no pain nor is injured. He who knows as above becomes the self of all beings. As is this deity (Hiranyagarbha), so is he. As all beings take care of this deity, so do they take care of him. Howsoever these beings may grieve, that grief of theirs is connected with them. But only merit goes to him. No demerit ever goes to the gods.

"The divine vital force from water and the moon permeates him"

As previously explained,   a vital force does not exist in itself.   A vital force is the description of desire using or moving the material of creation to create the object of desire.
Here,   "The divine vital force from water"   is the material form of the man,   "water"   and the mind that desires  "moon"   "permeates him"   that is,   maintaining his being.

"That is the divine vital force which, when it moves or does not move, feels no pain nor is injured"

The material of creation and the desire that moves it to create,   which is called a vital force is merely a concept of desire.   A vital force   "feels no pain nor is injured"   because it has no actual existence.   A vital force   "moves or does not move"   only with desire.

"He who knows as above becomes the self of all beings"

"He who knows"   is he who meditates with desire.   He who meditates with desire desires the power to create,   that is,   become a vital force.   It is desire and vital force that maintains this very material creation   "the self of all beings".

"As is this deity (Hiranyagarbha), so is he"

Hiranyagarbha is the name given to that first movement of energy caused by the first desire to experience worldly   (material)   Knowledge.   That is,   Hiranyagarbha is a vital force of material desire as is the material form of man.

"As all beings take care of this deity, so do they take care of him"

"All beings"   take care of their form because they,   in their ignorance,   believe their material form to be their true selves,   that is,   they believe the vital force to be the true self of all beings.

"Howsoever these beings may grieve, that grief of theirs is connected with them"

Any loss,   any grief,   is only the ignorance of a material being.   A material vital force is the delusion of a material being.
The true Self of all beings is the Absolute Self,   Immutable,   Eternal,   Truth,   Consciousness   and Bliss.

"But only merit goes to him. No demerit ever goes to the gods"

from the attachments that cause grief and demerit.   The Father in this last example has been reborn with the higher Consciousness described by the Sruti as a deity.   But the vital force is still an illusion due to being in ignorance of the Non-Dual Absolute Self so rebirth into material worlds,   albeit as a deity,   is his path.

These last three verses have described the respective three foods of the Father as speech,   mind and vital force.   Also respectively as the world of men,   the world of the manes and the world of the gods.   And in respective order they are gained or achieved through a Son,   through rites and through meditation.
The ultimate achievement of sentient beings is through higher Self Consciousness or Realisation.   This is because in reality the Self Exists as Absolute Consciousness Alone.   This is the verdict of the Sruti   :-
2.4.12   The Self is Consciousness and is all that Exists.

He who understands this,   meditates to Realise this and so gains emancipation from all worlds becoming as the Self Alone.

 

1.5.21   Now a consideration of the vow: Prajapati projected the organs. These, on being projected, quarrelled with one another. The organ of speech took a vow, 'I will go on speaking'. The eye: 'I will see'. The ear: 'I will hear'. And so did the other organs according to their functions. Death captured them in the form of fatigue it overtook them, and having overtaken them it controlled them. Therefore the organ of speech invariably gets tired, and so do the eye and the ear. But death did not over take this vital force in the body. The organs resolved to know it. 'This is the greatest among us that, when it moves or does not move, feels no pain nor is injured. Well, let us all be of its form'. They all assumed its form. Therefore they are called by this name of 'Prana'. That family in which a man is born who knows as above, is indeed named after him. And he who competes with one who knows as above shrivels, and after shrivelling dies at the end. This is with reference to the body.

"Prajapati projected the organs. These, on being projected, quarrelled with one another".

These organs symbolise sentient beings,   sentient beings constitute creation,   the world of man.
The true state of being or existence of the organs is at rest as the Non-Dual Absolute as a singularity of unmanifest Knowledge.
From the cause that brought the universe into being,   the first born or Prajapati or Viraj,   came the cause of the projection of the organs into creation.   All of material Creation including the organs suffers the condition of unreality and duality.   Attached to the delusion of individuality and identified with their form and function they compete for individual recognition,   this is the meaning or cause of their quarrelling.

"The organ of speech took a vow, 'I will go on speaking'. The eye: 'I will see'. The ear: 'I will hear'....."

  All men can say,   "I Am",   and remain unattached,   in this way they would transcend duality.   To say,   "I am Speech"   "I am Sight"   "I am Hearing" etc.   is attachment to ego,   work   and action and is a delusion of material individuality.

"Death captured them in the form of fatigue...and having overtaken them it controlled them".

This attachment to action for results is said to be a cause of material creation.   Creation is transient therefore mortal.   Fatigue and death naturally follow.   This is the meaning of   "Death captured them in the form of fatigue".   Naturally death is the ultimate control or limit of all material life.   But on a more subtle level the fear of death controls the freedom of all those ignorant of their true being as the immortal Absolute Self.

"But death did not over take this vital force in the body".

The vital force is that very desire for life.   The original desire that caused creation has the quality of desiring to maintain creation which is the symbol of life itself.   So long as there is desire then so long will there appear a vital force.   Those ignorant of their true self as the Absolute eternal Non-Dual Self will see the vital force as their divine life and self and they will cling to that.

"The organs resolved to know it....They all assumed its form.... 'Prana'".

These organs,   as demonstrated,   are deluded with the evils of duality.   These organs desired what the vital force had   (apparent immortality).

"This is the greatest among us that, when it moves or does not move, feels no pain nor is injured. Well, let us all be of its form"

The original cause of distress to these   "organs"   was attachment to their material identity.   Seeing the vital force unaffected through attachment the organs resolved to take the form of that vital force also called Prana or breath of life.   But through this duality and desire seeking material life through an assumed vital force   (the "self" of the ignorant)   they will be reborn into the Creation cycle,   rebirth being the understanding of immortality for the ignorant.

"That family in which a man is born who knows as above, is indeed named after him"

This means that those ignorant of the Absolute Self become associated with the desire for further creation through sons and family   ( "named after")   using the vital force of desire.

"he who competes with one who knows as above shrivels, and after shrivelling dies at the end. This is with reference to the body."

This means the Self Realised sage through his higher knowledge   "competes"   with the dualistic understanding of individual ego and identification with form as "self" such as the quarrelsome organs of the eye etc.   This Realised one will not seek material gain through a vital force,   therefore he   "shrivels"   and therefore his effect within this material creation will diminish,   his desires within Creation will die.   At the end of the life of this body a new body will not be taken up   (created),   :-
"dies at the end. This is with reference to the body".
This one whose knowledge of the Absolute transcended that of the organs and their vital force also transcended the cycle of birth and death.
Through this renunciation he,   the wise sage,   achieves Self Realisation and liberation.

 

1.5.22   Now with reference to the gods: Fire took a vow, 'I will go on burning' The sun: 'I will give heat'. The moon: 'I will shine'. And so did the other gods according to their functions. As is the vital force in the body among these organs, so is Vayu (air) among these gods. Other gods sink, but not air. Air is the deity that never sets.

Detachment from ones duties while at the same time performing ones duties is right action.   For instance,   it is in the nature of the Sun to radiate heat and through Self awareness it   (as representing beings)   observes itself doing so but without being attached to any outcome from this,   But if,   as in the case of the organs   (or beings)   in the previous verse the sun became attached to its being it would suffer mortality (sink).
Here again the sun follows the example of vital force , air (prana),   It understands attachment to work (vows).   It is caught by attachments.   These gods are proud of their world,   with that pride rises an imagined vital force.
These gods rest in air,   their vital force in the world of the gods.   The organs and sentient beings in the above verse also cling to their vital force.   Our actions should not be for gain or caused by desire and should be free of attachment.   There should be the conscious awareness that there is nothing here to benefit from gain.   Our actions should be to meet the need only and all else sacrificed to That in which all Existence rests.

 

1.5.23   Now there is this verse: 'The gods observed the vow of that from which the sun rises and in which he sets. It is (followed) to day, and it will be (followed) to-morrow'. The sun indeed rises from the vital force and also sets in it. What these (gods) observed then, they observe to this day. Therefore a man should observe a single vow, do the functions of the Prana and Apana (respiration and excretion), lest the evil of death (fatigue) should overtake him. And if he observes it, he should seek to finish it. Through it he attains identity with this deity, or lives in the same world with it.

The world   (Consciousness)   of the gods is still within this Creation.   This creation rose from   (was caused by)   the notion of vital force because it is the ego and desire that understands vital force.
So it is said that all who wish to maintain their world and their position within it should uphold the   "vow"   of the vital force to maintain their material being .
As explained the universe and the sun and all else in creation is maintained (continually caused) by the ignorance of the ego and vital force also seen as the breath of life,   the Prana and Apana.   Through these the universe has been caused   is maintained   and will again be Created.
By maintaining a vital force in this way one clings to life and to ones world.   "lives in the same world with it".

 

Section 6.

1.6.1   This (universe) indeed consists of three things: name, form and action. Of those names, speech (sound in general) is the Uktha (source), for all names spring from it. It is their Saman (common feature), for it is common to all names. It is their Brahman (self), for it sustains all names.

"This (universe) indeed consists of three things: name, form and action"

We have already had the universe explained as consisting of name and form only due to its all arising from the one source of pure knowledge.
Name and form being manifest is the manifestation of energy or material.   The sole purpose of having a material form   (body)   is to provide the experience of duality and interaction in all its forms.

"speech (sound in general) is the Uktha (source) for all names spring from it"

Speech sounds duality and describes duality through the differentiation of names.

"It is their...common feature"

All names depend on sound,   therefore sound or speech is the   "common feature"   of names and differentiation.

"It is their Brahman (self), for it sustains all names"

This   "Brahman (self)"   means the vital force of desire that sustains,   for the time being,   material creation including the creation of sound.

 

1.6.2   Now of forms the eye (anything visible) is the Uktha (source), for all forms spring from it. It is their Saman (common feature), for it is common to all forms. It is their Brahman (self), for it sustains all forms.

"the eye (anything visible) is the...source...for all forms spring from it"

Without the sense of sight the differentiation into forms would not be known.   Therefore from the sense of sight all forms become known.

"It is their...common feature...for it is common to all forms"

All forms rely on the sense of sight for their relevance so it is the common feature in their cognition.

"It is their Brahman (self), for it sustains all forms"

This   "Brahman (self)"   means the vital force of desire that sustains,   for the time being,   material creation including the creation of sight and light and so forth.

 

1.6.3   And of actions the body (activity) is the Uktha (source), for all actions spring from it. It is their Saman (common feature), for it is common to all actions. It is their Brahman (self), for it sustains all actions. These three together are one; this body, and the body, although one, is these three. This immortal entity is covered by truth (the five elements): The vital force is the immortal entity, and name and form are truth (so) this vital force is covered by them.

"of actions the body (activity) is the...source...for all actions spring from it"

The action referred to here is action due to desire.

"It is their...common feature...for it is common to all actions"

All desires are obtained through the functions of the form "body".

"It is their Brahman (self), for it sustains all actions"

The Body is the   "Brahman (self)"   of material desire,   (vital force).

"this body, and the body"

"this body"   refers to the body of causes that are named   "vital force".
"the body"   refers to the material form   "body"   consisting of organs and so forth.

(this body, and the body)   "although one, is these three"
The meaning of   "(this body, and the body)   although one..."   is that in reality all this Universe containing all its forms is but the material of that original desire.
Which also corresponds with the fact that the material form of the body is also the material of that original desire.
Here,   a vital force is also described as a "body",   being made up of desire manifested through the creation of material.
"These three",   name,   form   and action are the components of the functions of the material body,   and   "These three",   are also the results of a vital force.

"This immortal entity is covered by truth (the five elements)"

The five elements refer to the material of creation.

"The vital force is the immortal entity"

As previously described,   a vital force is desire made manifest through the creation of material.   Without desire there is no vital force,   but the knowledge from which desire arises and therefore a vital force is eternal.

"and name and form are truth (so) this vital force is covered by them"

"name and form"   are the material of the universe.   It is through   "covered by them"   the material of creation producing the object of desire that a vital force is described.

That this universe consists of name form and action is revealed in its differentiation.   It is being said that sound is the fundamental support of all names.   Sight is the fundamental support of form and the body is the support and source of all action or work.
Work is the action of desire and desires are the product of duality and ignorance which assumes a vital force.

As explained in the introduction to this commentary   "truth"   is a description used for the material of creation,   in particular here referring to the material body.   This body it is said covers the   "immortal"   Vital Force.   The vital force or the ego will be the eternal   ("immortal")   support of desire and ignorance which in turn will always be the immortal or perpetual cause of this Creation due to that ignorance.
What can also be understood from this section is that this Universe and all that can be seen with the senses is transient and unreal.   As a mere projection of Absolute Knowledge it is truth,   but in reality the Absolute is the One Non-Dual   "Truth"   of this   "truth".

The meaning is,   this Universe and mankind consists materially of name and form alone.
All this material arose from and depends on desire which constitutes a material vital force of desire   (action).
This Consciousness of material desire has caused the forgetting of the Non-Dual Absolute.
The wise tell us that The Non-Dual Absolute   (Knowledge, Consciousness and Bliss)   Alone should be meditated on and Realised.

 

 

Ohm   peace,   peace,   peace.

 

Continue to Chapter Two