rule



 

 

Canto 11

Arunodaya-kîrt./Jiv Jâg

 

 


Chapter 17: The Varnâs'rama System and the Boat of Bhakti: the Students and the Householders

(1-2) S'rî Uddhava said: 'Oh Lotus-eyed One, You previously described the religious principles of being devoted to You that are respected by all varnâs'rama followers and even by those who do not follow this system. Explain now to me how human beings by mindfully executing their occupational duties may arrive at devotional service unto You. (3-4) Dear Mâdhava, oh Mighty-armed One, in the past You in the form of Lord Hamsa approached Brahmâ about the religious principles by which one finds supreme happiness [11.13]. After having ruled for such a very long time oh Subduer of the Enemies, these principles that You have taught today, will not be common any longer in human society [see also 5.6: 10 and 11.5: 36 and Kali-yuga]. (5-6) Dear Acyuta, there is no speaker, creator and protector of dharma other than You; not on earth and not even in the assembly of Brahmâ where You are present in a partial manifestation of Yours [viz. the Vedas, see also 10.87]. When the earth is abandoned by Your lordship oh Madhusûdana, oh Creator, Protector and Speaker, who then oh Lord, will speak about the [knowledge that was] lost? (7) Please describe therefore to me oh Master, oh Knower of All Dharma, who would qualify to observe the original duties that are characterized by devotion unto You and how does one perform them?'

(8) S'rî S'uka said: 'He, the Supreme Lord Hari, thus being questioned by the best of His devotees was pleased and then spoke, for the sake of the welfare of all conditioned souls, about the eternal duties of dharma. (9) The Supreme Lord said: 'This question of yours is one faithful to the dharma, it leads man to beatitude. Please, Uddhava, learn from Me about these forms of good [varnâs'rama] conduct concerning the societal status [âs'rama] and vocation [varna]. (10) In the beginning in Satya-yuga there was [only] one class of human beings and they were called hamsa [swan]. The citizens of that age were by birth well known with the duties to be performed - hence the scholars know that age as Krita-yuga, the age of the fulfillment of duty. (11) One during that time with the Pranava gave expression to the [not in four divided] Veda, knowing Me to be the duty in the form of the bull of religion [see 1.16: 18 and 1.17: 24]. Fixed in austerity and free from sins, one worshiped Me as Lord Hamsa. (12) At the beginning of Tretâ-yuga, oh greatly fortunate one, in My heart from the prânâ the threefold of knowing [the three Vedas Rig, Sâma and Yajur] originated whereby I appeared in the three forms of sacrifice [hence the name Tretâ, see ritvik]. (13) From the Original Personality the intellectuals, the rulers, the merchants and the laborers [the varnas] generated whose personal activities can be recognized as [respectively] those from the mouth, the arms, the thighs and feet [legs] of the universal form [compare 2.1: 37]. (14) The celibate students came from My heart, the householders are from My loins, from My chest the ones [of retreat] living in the forest found their existence and the renounced order of life is found in My head [see âs'ramas]. (15) The usual natures of the people of  the different societal classes [varnas] and status groups [âs'ramas] evolved according to the situation of their birth [in My body]: in a low position inferior natures evolved and in a high position superior natures developed. (16) Equanimity, sense-control, austerity, cleanliness, contentment, forgiveness, sincerity, devotion to Me, compassion and truthfulness are the natural qualities of the brahmins [compare 7.11: 21 and B.G. 18: 42]. (17) Ardor, physical strength, determination, heroism, tolerance, generosity, endeavor, steadiness, being mindful of the brahminical culture and leadership are the natural qualities of the kshatriyas [My arms, compare 7.11: 22 and B.G. 18: 43]. (18) Faith, dedication to charity, straightforwardness, service to the brahmins and always engaged in the accumulation of money, constitute the natural qualities of the vais'yas [My thighs, compare 7.11: 23 and B.G. 18: 44]. (19) Free from deceit being obedient towards the twice-born souls [the three higher varnas], of service for both the cows and the divine personalities as also being perfectly contented with the reward thus acquired, are the natural qualities of the s'ûdras [His feet or legs, compare 7.11: 24 and B.G. 18: 44]. (20) To be unclean, deceitful, thievish, faithless, quarrelsome, lusty, fiery and of constant hankering, constitutes the nature of those who occupy the lowest position [the outcasts]. (21) It is the duty of all members of society to be of nonviolence, truthfulness and honesty, to be free from lust, anger and greed and to desire the welfare and happiness of all living entities.

(22) A twice-born soul  having undergone a second birth with purificatory rites [with samskâras receiving a sacred thread] and [initiation into] the Gâyatrî mantra, should reside in the residence [the school] of the guru and  must with his senses under control on his request study the scriptures [see also B.G. 16: 24]. (23) Carrying a belt, a deerskin, a staff, prayer beads, a brahmin thread, a water pot and matted hair, he [the brahmacârî] without neglecting [*] his teeth and clothes, uses kus'a grass [to sit upon] and [does] not [accept] a pleasant seat. (24) Bathing and eating, attending sacrifices and doing japa, passing stool and urine, he does in silence [Vaishnavas actually murmur doing japa]; he should not [fully] trim his nails or hair, including the hair under his arms and in the pubic area [see also s'ikhâ]. (25) Someone under the vow of celibacy should never spill his semen and, when it flowed of its own, take a bath, control his breath and chant the Gâyatrî [see also ûrdhva-retah]. (26) Purified with fixed attention, at the beginning and the end of the day performing his japa silently, he should serve the fire-god, the sun [see cakra], the âcârya, the cow, the brahmin, the teacher, the elderly and the God-fearing soul [compare: 11.14: 35]. (27) He has to recognize Me in the teacher of example [the âcârya]. The âcârya he should never at any time enviously deny respect considering him a mortal being, for the spiritual master represents all the gods [see also rule of thumb and compare e.g. 7.14: 17, 10.81: 39, 10.45: 32 and 11.15: 27]. (28) In the morning and evening he should bring him the food that was collected and offer it to him together with other articles. In self-restraint he should accept what he allows [to be his share]. (29) He should always humbly be engaged in serving the âcârya, following him closely, proving his respect with folded hands wherever he goes, rests, sits or stands. (30) Thus being engaged he [the upakurvâna brahmacârî] should, free from [unregulated] sense gratification and without breaking the vow [of celibacy], live in the school of the guru until the education is completed [see also Kumâras]. (31) If he [naishthhika, faithful for the rest of his life] desires to climb up to the world of the verses [Maharloka], the heaven of Brahmâ, he should, for the sake of his Vedic studies, offer his body to the guru with the great vow [of permanent celibacy, see yama]. (32) Actively engaged in the spirit and sinless he should worship Me as being the Supreme Undivided Intelligence present in the fire, in the spiritual master, in himself and in all living beings [see also B.G. 5: 18, siddhânta and advaita]. (33) The first thing to be forsaken by someone [sexually ripe but spiritually directed who is] not running his own household, is to glance at, touch, converse and joke and such with [sexually receptive] women or other sexually active living beings [see 11.14: 29 and 6.1: 56-68]. (34-35) Cleanliness, washing one's hands, bathing, in the morning and evening being of religious service, worshiping Me, visiting holy places, handling the prayer beads, avoiding things untouchable, things not fit for consumption and things not to be discussed - this all oh Uddhava, constitutes the voluntary penance that in order to restrain the mind, the words and the body with Me, I who reside within all beings, is enjoined for all spiritual departments [âs'ramas]. (36) A brahmin observing the great vow who thus burns his karmic mentality by the intensity of his penance, becomes as bright as a fire and a spotless devotee of Mine. (37) When after thus properly having studied the Vedic knowledge, he [the brahmacârî] desires [to enter family life], he must offer the spiritual master remuneration and with his permission bathe himself, [put on nice clothes and leave **].

(38) Except for when he is My devotee, a true dvija [a person from the three higher classes] should either enter family life [grihastha], the forest [vanaprastha] or become a monk, a mendicant ['samniyâsin' or sannyâsi]; he should move from one authorized societal position [âs'rama] to the other and not act otherwise. (39) Desiring a household one should marry a wife with similar qualities who is beyond reproach and younger in age. When the first wife is of the same vocation another one may follow [of a lower class - varna - or subdivision of it, the caste - jati]. (40) Sacrifice, Vedic study and charity are the activities of all twice-born souls, but only the brahmins practice the acceptance of charity, giving [Vedic] instructions and performing sacrifices for others [compare 7.11: 14]. (41) When a brahmin considers the acceptance of charity as detrimental to his penance, spiritual power and glory, he must subsist on the other two [of teaching and sacrifice] and when he  considers also these two as incompatible with his spirituality, he must subsist on gathering ears of corn left behind in the field [live 'of the stones', see also 6.7: 36, 7.15: 30 and B.G. 9: 22]. (42) The body of a brahmin is not meant for futile sense gratification [and the consequent involuntary penances of war, disease and incarceration], it is meant for [voluntary] penances in this world and an unlimited happiness in the world hereafter [see also 11.6: 9 and B.G. 17: 14-19]. (43) With his consciousness perfectly contented in his occupation of gleaning grains and magnanimously, free from passion cultivating dharma, someone who has fixed his mind upon Me - and who is thus not very attached - can achieve liberation even when he lives a householder's life [compare B.G. 3: 22 and 10.69]. (44) He who delivers a brahmin surrendered to Me [or an experienced devotee] from a life of suffering [poverty], I before long, like a boat in the ocean, will deliver from all misery. (45) A king saves himself by delivering, like a father, his people from difficulties, just as a bull elephant without any fear for himself protects himself and other elephants [see also 4.20: 14]. (46) The human ruler who thus proceeding on earth removes all sins, will therefore enjoy heaven, together with the king of heaven [Indra] riding a heavenly vehicle as brilliant as the sun. (47) When a [Vedic] scholar suffers want he can engage in doing business like a merchant, or suffering misfortune he must take up the sword [engage in politics]. In no case of misfortune he can behave like a dog [follow a lower master]. (48) A king in case of emergency may maintain himself by acting like a merchant, by hunting or by acting like a man of knowledge. But he can never follow the course of a[n obedient] dog. (49) A vais'ya may adopt the business of a s'ûdra and a s'ûdra may adopt the way of an artisan and make baskets and mats, but freed from misery he must not desire a livelihood by engaging in a lower type of work [see also 7.11: 17]. (50) [Being a householder] one should perform worship on a daily basis for the demigods, the sages, the forefathers and all living beings as being My potencies, by studying Vedic knowledge, saying the mantras svadhâ ['blessed be'] and svâhâ ['hail to'] and by offering food and such depending the prosperity one enjoys [see also 11.5: 41]. (51) Whether one's money was acquired without endeavor or acquired by performing one's straight duty, one should without burdening one's dependents, be of proper respect with the help of Vedic rituals. (52) One should not be fixed on one's family members nor get bewildered by them [trying to control them]; being wise one sees that things ahead are just as temporary as matters of the past. (53) The association with one's children, wife, relatives and friends is like an association with travelers; one is separated from all of them in a next body, just like a dream disappears that occurs in one's sleep [see also 7.2: 21, 9.19: 27-28]. (54) A liberated soul thus convinced who does not identify with the body and selflessly lives at home like a guest, will not get entangled in the domestic situation. (55) When one with the activities of a family life worships Me, one may as a devotee remain at home or enter the forest, or also, given responsible offspring, take to the renounced order. (56) Someone though whose consciousness is disturbed by his desire for a home, children and money, is in a state of bondage and - henpecked - being of a miserly mentality, unintelligently thinks in terms of I and mine. (57) 'Oh my poor old mom and dad. Oh my wife with a baby in her arms and oh my young, unprotected children! How in the world can they live when they, wretched because of missing me, have to suffer greatly?' [see e.g. also 11.7: 52-57] (58) Such a person whose mind in his domestic situation thus is overwhelmed by thoughts and emotions, will because of his bewildered intelligence of constant concern about his family, find no satisfaction and land in darkness when he dies.'

 

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Third revised edition, loaded June 5, 2015.

 



 

 

 

Previous Aadhar edition and Vedabase links:

Text 1-2

S'rî Uddhava said: 'Oh Lotus-eyed One, You previously described the religious principles of being devoted to You that are respected by all varnâs'rama followers and even by those who do not follow this system. Explain now to me how human beings by mindfully executing their occupational duties may arrive at devotional service unto You.
S'rî Uddhava said: 'O Lotus-eyed One, You previously described the religious principles that are prescribed by bhakti and are respected by all varnâs'rama followers and even by those who do not follow this system. You should explain to me that process by means of which human beings executing their occupational duties by Your grace can achieve devotional service. (Vedabase)

 

Text 3-4

Dear Mâdhava, oh Mighty-armed One, in the past You in the form of Lord Hamsa approached Brahmâ about the religious principles by which one finds supreme happiness [11.13]. After having ruled for such a very long time oh Subduer of the Enemies, these principles that You have taught today, will not be common any longer in human society [see also 5.6: 10 and 11.5: 36 and Kali-yuga].

The religious principles by which there is the supreme happiness and of which You, as said [11.13], previously, dear Mâdhava, o Mighty-armed One, in the form of Lord Hamsa spoke to Brahmâ, will, the way they these days have been taught by You, after having ruled for such a very long time, o Subduer of the enemies, not be common any longer in human society [see also 5.6: 10 and 11.5: 36 and Kali-yuga]. (Vedabase)

   

Text 5-6

Dear Acyuta, there is no speaker, creator and protector of dharma other than You; not on earth and not even in the assembly of Brahmâ where You are present in a partial manifestation of Yours [viz. the Vedas, see also 10.87]. When the earth is abandoned by Your lordship oh Madhusûdana, oh Creator, Protector and Speaker, who then oh Lord, will speak about the [knowledge that was] lost?

Dear Acyuta, there is no other speaker, creator and protector of dharma but You; not on earth, nor even in the assembly of Brahmâ where You're present in the form of a part of You [viz. the Vedas, see also 10.87]. When the earth is abandoned by Your lordship, o Madhusûdana, o Creator, Protector and Speaker, then who, o Lord, will speak about the knowledge that was lost? (Vedabase)

 

Text 7

Please describe therefore to me oh Master, oh Knower of All Dharma, who would qualify to observe the original duties that are characterized by devotion unto You and how does one perform them?'

Therefore, while You are still among us, please describe to me o Master, o Knower of All Dharma, who would be fit to execute the original duties that characterize Your bhakti and how they should be performed.' (Vedabase)


Text 8

S'rî S'uka said: 'He, the Supreme Lord Hari, thus being questioned by the best of His devotees was pleased and then spoke, for the sake of the welfare of all conditioned souls, about the eternal duties of dharma.

S'rî S'uka said: 'He, the Supreme Lord Hari, thus pleased to be questioned by the best of His devotees, for the sake of the highest welfare of all conditioned souls spoke about the eternal duties of dharma. (Vedabase)

 

Text 9

The Supreme Lord said: 'This question of yours is one faithful to the dharma, it leads man to beatitude. Please, Uddhava, learn from Me about these forms of good [varnâs'rama] conduct concerning the societal status [âs'rama] and vocation [varna].

The Supreme Lord said: 'This dharmic question of yours constitutes for normal human beings the cause of the highest welfare. Please, Uddhava, learn from Me about the duties, the way they are executed by those who observe the varnâs'rama system. (Vedabase)

 

Text 10

In the beginning in Satya-yuga there was [only] one class of human beings and they were called hamsa [swan]. The citizens of that age were by birth well known with the duties to be performed - hence the scholars know that age as Krita-yuga, the age of the fulfillment of duty.

In the beginning there is the age of Krita wherein the human beings belong to one class that is called hamsa. The citizens of that age are by birth well known with the duties to be performed - hence do the learned know it as Krita-yuga, the age of the fulfillment of duty. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 11

One during that time with the Pranava gave expression to the [not in four divided] Veda, knowing Me to be the duty in the form of the bull of religion [see 1.16: 18 and 1.17: 24]. Fixed in austerity and free from sins, one worshiped Me as Lord Hamsa.

First of all is the [undivided] Veda expressed with the Pranava, with which I am known as duty in the form of the bull of religion [see 1.16: 18 and 1.17: 24]. With that they, who fixed in austerity are free from sins, worship Me as Lord Hamsa. (Vedabase)

 

Text 12

At the beginning of Tretâ-yuga, oh greatly fortunate one, in My heart from the prânâ the threefold of knowing [the three Vedas Rig, Sâma and Yajur] originated whereby I appeared in the three forms of sacrifice [hence the name Tretâ, see ritvik].

At the beginning of Tretâ-yuga, o greatly fortunate one, originated from the prânâ in My heart the threefold of knowing [the three Vedas Rig, Sâma and Yajur] to the occasion of which I appeared in the three forms of sacrifice [hence the name Tretâ, see ritvik]. (Vedabase)

 

Text 13

From the Original Personality the intellectuals, the rulers, the merchants and the laborers [the varnas] generated whose personal activities can be recognized as [respectively] those from the mouth, the arms, the thighs and feet [legs] of the universal form [compare 2.1: 37].

Generated from the Original Personality the learned, the warriors, the merchants and the workers [the varnas] were born and by their personal activities recognized as [respectively] being from the mouth, the arms, the thighs and legs of the universal form [compare 2.1: 37]. (Vedabase)

 

Text 14

The celibate students came from My heart, the householders are from My loins, from My chest the ones [of retreat] living in the forest found their existence and the renounced order of life is found in My head [see âs'ramas].

The householders are situated in My loins, the celibate students in My heart, in My chest the ones dwelling in the forest are found and the renounced order is situated in My head [see âs'ramas]. (Vedabase)

 

Text 15

The usual natures of the people of  the different societal classes [varnas] and status groups [âs'ramas] evolved according to the situation of their birth [in My body]: in a low position inferior natures evolved and in a high position superior natures developed.

Depending the superior or inferior position that one according to one's birth occupies in My body, developed the higher and lower human nature of the people belonging to the different societal classes [varnas] and status groups [âs'ramas]. (Vedabase)


Text 16

Equanimity, sense-control, austerity, cleanliness, contentment, forgiveness, sincerity, devotion to Me, compassion and truthfulness are the natural qualities of the brahmins [in the highest position, the head, compare 7.11: 21 and B.G. 18: 42].

Equanimity, sense-control, austerity, cleanliness, contentment, forgiveness, sincerity, devotion to Me, compassion and truthfulness are the natural qualities of the brahmins [compare 7.11: 21 and B.G. 18: 42]. (Vedabase)

  

Text 17

Ardor, physical strength, determination, heroism, tolerance, generosity, endeavor, steadiness, being mindful of the brahminical culture and leadership are the natural qualities of the kshatriyas [My arms, compare 7.11: 22 and B.G. 18: 43].

Ardor, physical strength, determination, heroism, tolerance, generosity, endeavor, steadiness, being mindful of the brahminical and leadership are the natural qualities of the kshatriyas [compare 7.11: 22 and B.G. 18: 43]. (Vedabase)

 

Text 18

Faith, dedication to charity, straightforwardness, service to the brahmins and always engaged in the accumulation of money, constitute the natural qualities of the vais'yas [My thighs, compare 7.11: 23 and B.G. 18: 44].

Belief in God and dedication to charity, straightforwardness, love for the brahminical and always being busy accumulating money constitute the natural qualities of the vais'yas [compare 7.11: 23 and B.G. 18: 44]. (Vedabase)

 

Text 19

Free from deceit being obedient towards the twice-born souls [the three higher varnas], of service for both the cows and the divine personalities as also being perfectly contented with the reward thus acquired, are the natural qualities of the s'ûdras [His feet or legs, compare 7.11: 24 and B.G. 18: 44].

Free from duplicity to be of service for the brahmins, the cows and the godly and to be perfectly contented with the earnings are the natural qualities of the s'ûdras [compare 7.11: 24 and B.G. 18: 44]. (Vedabase)


Text 20

To be unclean, deceitful, thievish, faithless, quarrelsome, lusty, fiery and of constant hankering, constitutes the nature of those who occupy the lowest position [the outcasts].

To be unclean, deceitful, thievish, faithless, quarrelsome, lusty, fiery and of constant hankering constitutes the nature of those occupying the lowest position [the outcastes].(Vedabase)

 

Text 21

It is the duty of all members of society to be of nonviolence, truthfulness and honesty, to be free from lust, anger and greed and to desire the welfare and happiness of all living entities.

For all the members of society it is the duty to be of nonviolence, truthfulness and honesty, to be free from lust, anger and greed and to desire the welfare and happiness of all living entities. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 22

A twice-born soul  having undergone a second birth with purificatory rites [with samskâras receiving a sacred thread] and [initiation into] the Gâyatrî mantra, should reside in the residence [the school] of the guru and  must with his senses under control on his request study the scriptures [see also B.G. 16: 24]. 

When he in due order [with samskâras] begins a new life with performing his duties [ends his karma, sins no more and usually with initiation into the Gâyatrî receives the sacred thread], someone twice born should, residing in the spiritual community of the guru, with his senses under control follow the precept to study the scriptures [see also B.G. 16: 24]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 23

Carrying a belt, a deerskin, a staff, prayer beads, a brahmin thread, a water pot and matted hair, he [the brahmacârî] without neglecting [*] his teeth and clothes, uses kus'a grass [to sit upon] and [does] not [accept] a pleasant seat.

With a belt, a deerskin [or these days: simple clothes], a staff [or other means of transport], prayer beads, a brahmin thread, a waterpot, matted hair [devotees these days are shaven], with teeth well maintained and clothes properly covering [*] is he [the brahmacârî], carrying kus'a [being of the prayer mat], not after the highest seat. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 24

Bathing and eating, attending sacrifices and doing japa, passing stool and urine, he does in silence [Vaishnavas actually murmur doing japa]; he should not [fully] trim his nails or hair, including the hair under his arms and in the pubic area [see also s'ikhâ].

Bathing and eating, attending sacrifices and doing the rosary, passing stool and urine, he does in silence [Vaishnavas do murmur with japa]; he should not [completely, these days] cut his nails or hair, including the hair under his arms and in the pubic area [see also s'îkhâ]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 25

Someone under the vow of celibacy should never spill his semen and, when it flowed of its own, take a bath, control his breath and chant the Gâyatrî [see also ûrdhva-retah].

Someone of the vow of celibacy should never spill his semen and, when it flowed of its own, take a bath, control his breath and chant the Gâyatrî [see also ûrdhva-retah]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 26

Purified with fixed attention, at the beginning and the end of the day performing his japa silently, he should serve the fire-god, the sun [see cakra], the âcârya, the cow, the brahmin, the teacher, the elderly and the God-fearing soul [compare: 11.14: 35].

Purified with the consciousness fixed in respect for the fire-god, the sun [see cakra], the cows, the learned, the spiritual master, the elderly and the godfearing, should he, observing silence, do japa at the two junctions of time [morning and evening, compare: 11.14: 35]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 27

He has to recognize Me in the teacher of example [the âcârya]. The âcârya he should never at any time enviously deny respect considering him a mortal being, for the spiritual master represents all the gods [see also rule of thumb and compare e.g. 7.14: 17, 10.81: 39, 10.45: 32 and 11.15: 27].

The teacher of example [the âcârya] one should know to be Me. The âcârya should never at any time enviously be disrespected with the notion of him being a mortal being, for the guru is the representative of all the gods [see also rule of thumb and compare e.g. 7.14: 17, 10.81: 39, 10.45: 32 and 11.15: 27]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 28

In the morning and evening he should bring him the food that was collected and offer it to him together with other articles. In self-restraint he should accept what he allows [to be his share].

In the evening and morning one should bring him the food that was collected and offer it to him together with other articles. Being of self-restraint one should be pleased to accept what is allotted [by him]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 29

He should always humbly be engaged in serving the âcârya, following him closely, proving his respect with folded hands wherever he goes, rests, sits or stands.

Always engaged in serving the âcârya one should humbly at not too great a distance with folded hands prove one's respect for his path, his resting, his sitting and his standing. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 30

Thus being engaged he [the upakurvâna brahmacârî] should, free from [unregulated] sense gratification and without breaking the vow [of celibacy], live in the school of the guru until the education is completed [see also Kumâras].

Thus engaged he should [the upakurvâna brahmacârî], free from [unregulated] sense gratification, carry on unbroken in the vow [of celibacy], living in the school of the guru until the education is completed [see also Kumâras]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 31

If he [naishthhika, for the rest of his life] desires to climb up to the world of the verses [Maharloka], the heaven of Brahmâ, he should, for the sake of his Vedic studies, offer his body to the guru with the great vow [of permanent celibacy, see yama].

If he [naishthhika, for life] desires to climb up to the world of the verses [Maharloka] in order to be engaged in the Absolute Truth he should for the purpose studying the True Self offer his body to the guru with respect for the great vow [see yama]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 32

Actively engaged in the spirit and sinless he should worship Me as being the Supreme Undivided Intelligence present in the fire, in the spiritual master, in himself and in all living beings [see also B.G. 5: 18, siddhânta and advaita].

Vedically enlightened and sinless one should worship Me in the fire, in the spiritual master, in oneself and in all living beings as the Supreme Non-dual Conception [see also B.G. 5: 18, siddhânta and advaita]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 33

The first thing to be forsaken by someone [sexually ripe but spiritually directed who is] not running his own household, is to glance at, touch, converse and joke and such with [sexually receptive] women or other sexually active living beings [see 11.14: 29 and 6.1: 56-68].

With [sexually receptive] women - or sex-minded living beings - glancing, touching, conversing and joking and such is the first thing that someone not running a household [who is not married: the sannyâsî, the vânaprastha and the brahmacârî] should forsake [see 11.14: 29 and 6.1: 56-68]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 34-35

Cleanliness, washing one's hands, bathing, in the morning and evening being of religious service, worshiping Me, visiting holy places, handling the prayer beads, avoiding things untouchable, things not fit for consumption and things not to be discussed - this all oh Uddhava, constitutes the voluntary penance that in order to restrain the mind, the words and the body with Me, I who reside within all beings, is enjoined for all spiritual departments [âs'ramas].

Cleanliness, washing one's hands, bathing, in the morning and evening, being of religious service, worshiping Me, visiting holy places, doing the rosary, avoiding things untouchable, things not fit for consumption and things not to discuss - this all constitutes the voluntary penance that with Me, I who reside within all beings, in order to restrain the mind, the words and the body is enjoined for all spiritual departments [âs'ramas], o Uddhava. (Vedabase)

  

 Text 36

A brahmin observing the great vow who thus burns his karmic mentality by the intensity of his penance, becomes as bright as a fire and a spotless devotee of Mine.

A brahmin thus observing the great vow becomes bright like fire My spotless devotee of whom the karma was burned by the intensity of the penance. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 37

When after thus properly having studied the Vedic knowledge, he [the brahmacârî] desires [to enter family life], he must offer the spiritual master remuneration and with his permission bathe himself[, put on nice clothes and leave **].

Thus properly having studied the vedic literatures he should [as a brahmacârî], care for what's next [see next paragraph], offer the guru remuneration, tidy himself and leave [**] with his permission. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 38

Except for when he is My devotee, a true dvija [a person from the three higher classes] should either enter family life [grihastha], the forest [vanaprastha] or become a monk, a mendicant ['samniyâsin' or sannyâsi]; he should move from one authorized societal position [âs'rama] to the other and not act otherwise.

He should found a family or else live in the forest [becoming a recluse] or, belonging to the best of the twice-born [the brahmins], become a mendicant. For someone who didn't surrender to Me there is no alternative but to move systematically from one spiritual department to the next âs'rama. (Vedabase)


 Text 39

Desiring a household one should marry a wife with similar qualities who is beyond reproach and younger in age. When the first wife is of the same vocation another one may follow [of a lower class - varna - or subdivision of it, the caste - jati].

Desiring a household one should marry a wife with similar qualities who is beyond reproach and younger in age. With the first wife of the same vocation may follow another one [of a lower class or caste]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 40

Sacrifice, Vedic study and charity are the activities of all twice-born souls, but only the brahmins practice the acceptance of charity, giving [Vedic] instructions and performing sacrifices for others [compare 7.11: 14].

Sacrifice, vedic study and charity are the activities of all the twice-born, but only the brahmins practice the acceptance of charity, teaching vedic knowledge and officiating in sacrifices [compare 7.11: 14]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 41

When a brahmin considers the acceptance of charity as detrimental to his penance, spiritual power and glory, he must subsist on the other two [of teaching and sacrifice] and when he considers also these two as incompatible with his spirituality, he must subsist on gathering ears of corn left behind in the field [live 'of the stones', see also 6.7: 36, 7.15: 30 and B.G. 9: 22].

When an intellectual [a brahmin] considers the acceptance of charity as detrimental to his penance, spiritual stature and glory, he must subsist on the other two [of teaching and sacrifice] or, when he considers these two as incompatible with his spirituality, subsist on gathering ears of corn left behind in the field ['of the stones', live on the dole, see also 6.7: 36, 7.15: 30 and B.G. 9: 22]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 42

The body of a brahmin is not meant for futile sense gratification [and the consequent involuntary penances of war, disease and incarceration], it is meant for troublesome [voluntary] penances in this world and an unlimited happiness in the world hereafter [see also 11.6: 9 and B.G. 17: 14-19].

Certain is that the embodiment of a brahmin is meant for the hardship of [voluntary] penances in this world to find unlimited happiness in the hereafter and not for futile sense gratification [and the consequent involuntary penances of war, disease and incarceration, see also 11.6: 9 and B.G. 17: 14-19]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 43

With his conscioucness perfectly contented in his occupation of gleaning grains and magnanimously, free from passion cultivating dharma, someone who has fixed his mind upon Me - and who is thus not very attached - can achieve liberation even when he lives a householder's life [compare B.G. 3: 22 and 10.69].

Perfectly contented in being occupied with gleaning grains and magnanimously, free from passion cultivating dharma, can, even staying at home, the one who turned his mind to Me - and is thus not that attached - achieve liberation [compare B.G. 3: 22 and 10.69]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 44

He who delivers a brahmin surrendered to Me [or an experienced devotee] from a life of suffering [poverty], I before long, like a boat in the ocean, will deliver from all misery.

Those who uplift the learned as well as the ones who having surrendered to Me are suffering [poverty and disease], will by Me, like with a boat in the ocean, very soon be delivered from all miseries. (Vedabase)


 Text 45

A king saves himself by delivering, like a father, his people from difficulties, just as a bull elephant without any fear for himself protects himself and other elephants [see also 4.20: 14].

Like a bull elephant who fearlessly protects himself and other elephants, protects the king himself by saving, just like a father, all citizens from difficulties [see also 4.20: 14]. (Vedabase)


 Text 46

The human ruler who thus proceeding on earth removes all sins, will therefore enjoy heaven, together with the king of heaven [Indra] riding a heavenly vehicle as brilliant as the sun [see also 4.20: 14].

Thus the human ruler, who on earth removes all sins, enjoys heaven, together with Indra riding a heavenly vehicle as brilliant as the sun. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 47

When a [Vedic] scholar suffers want he can engage in doing business like a merchant, or suffering misfortune he must take up the sword [engage in politics]. In no case of misfortune he can behave like a dog [follow a lower master].

When a learned person is indebted the calamity must be overcome by doing business in behaving like a merchant, or else, still afflicted with misfortune, he must take up the sword [go in politics]. In no case can he behave like a dog [follow a lower master]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 48

A king in case of emergency may maintain himself by acting like a merchant, by hunting or by acting like a man of knowledge. But he can never follow the course of a[n obedient] dog.

A king suffering want may maintain himself acting like a merchant, or do so by means of hunting or by stepping forward as a man of learning. Under no condition may he follow the course of a dog.  (Vedabase)

 

 Text 49

A vais'ya may adopt the business of a s'ûdra and a s'ûdra may adopt the way of an artisan and make baskets and mats, but freed from misery he must not desire a livelihood by engaging in a lower type of work [see also 7.11: 17].

A vais'ya may adopt the business of a s'ûdra and a s'ûdra may adopt the way of an artisan, making baskets and mats to deal with an awkward situation, but freed one must not desire the work of such an inferior livelihood [see also 7.11: 17]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 50

[Being a householder] one should perform worship on a daily basis for the demigods, the sages, the forefathers and all living beings as being My potencies, by studying Vedic knowledge, saying the mantras svadhâ ['blessed be'] and svâhâ ['hail to'] and by offering food and such depending the prosperity one enjoys [see also 11.5: 41].

According to one's prosperity one should daily be of respect for the manifestations of My potency - the gods, the sages, the forefathers and all living entities - by vedic study and by offerings of food and such accompanied by [the mantras] svadhâ ['blessed be'] and svâhâ ['hail to', this rule thus applies to normal householders, see also 11.5: 41]. (Vedabase)


 Text 51

Whether one's money was acquired without endeavor or acquired by performing one's straight duty, one should without burdening one's dependents, be of proper respect with the help of Vedic rituals.

Unembarrassed with one's dependents whether one is of money acquired without endeavor or of money acquired by honest work, one should be of proper respect with the help of vedic rituals. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 52

One should not be fixed on one's family members nor get bewildered by them [trying to control them]; being wise one sees that things ahead are just as temporary as matters of the past.

One should not be attached to family members, nor go crazy [in being the controller]; nay, a wise person should see that things that lay ahead are just as temporary as matters that have happened. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 53

The association with one's children, wife, relatives and friends is like an association with travelers; one is separated from all of them in a next body, just like a dream disappears that occurs in one's sleep [see also 7.2: 21, 9.19: 27-28].

The association of children, a wife, relatives and friends is like the being together with travelers; like a dream occurring in one's sleep are they all separated with each change of body [see also 7.2: 21, 9.19: 27-28]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 54

A liberated soul thus convinced who does not identify with the body and selflessly lives at home like a guest, will not get entangled in the domestic situation.

With that conviction a liberated soul who doesn't identify with the body and lives selflessly at home like a guest, will not get entangled in the domestic situation. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 55

When one with the activities of a family life worships Me, one may as a devotee remain at home or enter the forest, or also, given responsible offspring, take to the renounced order.

When one with the activities of a family life worships Me, may one as a devotee remain at home or enter the forest, or also, given responsible offspring, take to the renounced order. (Vedabase)


 Text 56

Someone though whose consciousness is disturbed by his desire for a home, children and money, is in a state of bondage and - henpecked - being of a miserly mentality, unintelligently thinks in terms of I and mine.

Someone fixed on women however and whose consciousness is perturbed by the desire for a home, children and money, is in his bondage unintelligently with a miserly mentality thinking 'I am that and this is mine'. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 57

'Oh my poor old mom and dad. Oh my wife with a baby in her arms and oh my young, unprotected children! How in the world can they live when they, wretched because of missing me, have to suffer greatly?' [see e.g. also 11.7: 52-57]

'O my poor old mom and dad, my wife with a baby in her arms and my young, unprotected children! How in the world can they live when they wretched have to suffer greatly, missing me?' [see e.g. also 11.7: 52-57]. (Vedabase)

 

 Text 58

Such a person whose mind in his domestic situation thus is overwhelmed by thoughts and emotions, will because of his bewildered intelligence of constant concern about his family, find no satisfaction and land in darkness when he dies.

Thus will, with his home as his retreat, such a one, with his heart overwhelmed unsated ruminating about them, with a wrong point of view blinded land in darkness when he dies.' (Vedabase)


*: The term adhauta used here means, according the Monier Williams Dictionary, the negative of dhauta, which means white, washed, and purified as also removed and destroyed. Concerning teeth and clothes this could mean unpolished teeth and unwashed clothes as also teeth not broken, neglected or rotting and clothes properly covering the body. So it is to the context of the other values of renunciation to decide what meaning would apply. Since adhauta in the first sense would be at odds with the value of cleanliness, s'aucam [see e.g. verse 20 of this chapter and 1.17: 24], here therefore, contrary to previous interpretations, is chosen for the second sense of well maintained teeth and clothes properly covering the body, which is more in line with the normal code of conduct of vaishnava brahmacârî devotees in acceptance of a spiritual master [see also pp. 11.17: 23].

**: This process of 'tidying' is called the samâvartana-samskâra that marks the completion of the studies and returning home from living with the guru.

 
 




 

 

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The painting of the goddess Gayatri is by R.R. Varma.
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