Thursday, May 20, 2010

Purusha Sukta some details

This is an attempt to translate the commentary on Purusha Sukta by Sri Bannanje Govnidacharya. Whatever mistakes that you may find here are due to my limitations alone; neither of the Sukta or Bannanje.

Anuvaadaka Uvacha (Bannanje Says)

There are two great suktas that glorify the Father and Mother of this Universe: Purusha Sukta and Shri Sukta.

Purusha Sukta (PS) can be found in RigvEda [10th Mandala, 10th Sukta] and YajurvEda [Krishna YajurvEda Taitareeya AaraNyaka, 3rd PrapaaThaka, 12th Anuvaaka; Shukla-YajurvEda vaajasanEya samhita, 31st Adyaya; kaaNva samhita 35th Adyaya].

In the RigvEda recitation there are 16 Mantras, as in the kaaNva samhita recitation too. In the taittiriya recitation there are 18 Mantras. In the VaajasanEya Samhita version there are 16+6 = 22 mantras.

We can find Purusha Sukta in Samaveda too, but only the first five mantras: RigvEda's first varga [AraNya kaaNda's 617 to 621 or 6th Chapter's 4th kaNda's 3rd to 7th mathras]. It can also be found in AtharvavEda [19th kaaNda 6th Sukta], 16 mantras, except for the final mantra which is different.

There may be some minor differences in word usages and the sequence but essential the idea remains constant. Example: "sahasrasheershaa" has become "saharshasheershaaH" in SamavEda, and "sahasrabaahuH" in atharvavEda.

The spiritual importance and significance of this sukta can thus inferred by its presence in all the 4 vedas. This is the common base or injunction of all vedas. Some even consider Gayatri as the root of this Sukta and the Vedas as its expansion or exploration. The three parts / aksharas of the Omkara (PraNava) represent the three layered creation of Bhuh (Earth), Bhuvah (Sky), Suvah (Space). Purusha Sukta has three Sections that represent the three parts of Omkara and the three sections of the creation. So, in short Purusha Sukta is the essence of all vedas, and the is no sukta parallel to Purusha Sukta.

Rigvedic recitation which has 16 manthras are key to the shodashopachara (16 variated offerings to the Lord). These 16 represent: naama (name), lOka (word), karma (there is no equivalent in English that I know of, closest is work), maatu (vaak; speech), chintane (thought), veerya (seminal power/vigor), anna (body; sustaining aspect), manah (mind), indiryaah (senses), maNNu (earth), neenu (water), benki (fire), gaaLi (air), shraddha (faith), and jiva (existence; life; self). The 17th is the Chit-Prakriti (I dont have a translation for this; the Universal Energy or Daivi Maya) and the 18th is the Lord. And 18 thus has a huge significance in Vedic world.

The 16 aspects are together called the "kshara purusha" [kshasrah sarvaNi bhutani] in Bhagawad Gita. The SOUL (Jiva) is bound by the fence of MAYA (Chit-Prakriti), and the the mother of this creation is Laxmi Devi, who is referred to as akshara-purusha [kooTastoksharah uchyate]. The one who frees the JIVAs from this fencing of Maya is called Purushottama [uttama purusastu anyah paramatmeti udahritah .... pratitah purushottamah]. The kshara-akshra-purushottama trilogy put together are 18.

In Rigveda version these 16 mantras are divided into 3 sections: first five mantras form the first section; the next five (6-10) the second section; the remaining 6 (11-16). The three parts of AUM, and the three padas of Gayatri represent these three portions of the Sukta. Since swayam NarayaNa is the "rishi" for this Sukta, and since He is the pratipadyadevata (the Glorified deity of the Sukta), which is why this is also called "NaaraayaNaanuvaaka". This also confirms that Purusha Means NarayaNa alone, thus the Rigvedas purushasukta is referred to as NarayaNasukta in Yajurveda.

In Rigveda, the first fifteen of the 16 mantras follow Anushtup chandas (meters), and the last falls into trishtup. In the Yajurveda, the first 15 are Anustup and the last 3 are trishtup. In the Anustup Chandas, there are four 'padas' with eight letters each, so totally 32 letters. Sometimes there are just 7 or 9 letters in anustup, e.g. one pada - 'yad bhutam yaccha bhavyam'; half words like not considered in the count. In Tirshtup Chandas there are 11 letters in four padas, totally 44 letters.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Sanskrit influence in English

Parimita (mita - limit) - Permit
Upa - Higher - Up - Oppar
Manushyah - Manavah - Manava - Man
Purusham - Purushan - Person
Matr - Mother
Pitr - Father
Bratr - Brother
Atma - Atom
Paada - Ped (pedestrian) or pod as in tripod
mada - Mad
aswa - ass (even though aswa means horse)
para - par

Mahabharata Contents - Index

I. Adi Parva: 1. Anukramanika Parva. 2. Parvasangraha Parva. 3. Paushya Parva. 4. Pauloma Parva. 5. Astika Parva. 6. Ansavatarana Parva. 7. Sambhava Parva. 8. Jatugriha Parva. 9. Hidimba-vadha Parva. 10. Baka-Vadha Parva. 11. Chaitraratha Parva. 12. Svayamvara Parva. 13. Vaivahika Parva. 14. Viduragamana - Rajyalambha Parva. 15. Arjunavanavasa Parva. 16. Subhadraharana Parva. 17. Haranaharana Parva. 18. Khandava-daha Parva.

II. Sabha-Parva: 1. Sabha-kriya parva. 2. Lokapala Sabhakhyana Parva. 3. Rajasuyarambha Parva. 4. Jarasandha Vadha Parva. 5. Digvijaya Parva. 6. Rajsuyika Parva. 7. Arghyaharana Parva. 8. Shishupala Vadha Parva. 9. Dyuta Parva. 10. Anudyuta Parva.

III Vana Parva: 1. Aranyaka Parva. 2. Kirmira Vadha Parva. 3. Arjunabhigamana Parva. 4. Kairata Parva. 5. Indralokagamana Parva. 6. Nalopakhyana Parva. 7. Tirtha-Yatra Parva. 8. Yaksha Yuddha Parva. 9. Nivatakavacha Yuddha Parva. 10. Ajagara Parva. 11. Markandeya-Samasya Parva. 12. Draupadi Satyabhama Samvada Parva. 13. Ghosha Yatra Parva. 14. Mriga Svapnodbhava Parva. 15. Vrihi Drounika Parva. 16. Draupadi Harana Parva. 17. Jayadratha Vimokshana Parva. 18. Ramopakhyana Parva. 19. Pativrata Mahatmya Parva. 20. Kundalaharana Parva. 21. Araneya Parva.

IV Virata Parva: 1. Pandava Pravesha Parva. 2. Kichaka-Vadha Parva. 3. Goharana Parva. 4. Vaivahika Parva.

V. Udyoga Parva: 1. Senodyoga Parva. 2. Sanjayayana Parva. 3. Prajagara Parva. 4. Sanat-Sujata Parva. 5. Yanasandhi Parva. 6. Bhagavad-Yana Parva. 7. Sainya Niryana Parva. 8. Ambopakshyana Parva.

VI Bhisma Parva: 1. Jambukhanda Vinirmana Parva. 2. Bhumi Parva. 3. Bhagavadgita Parva. 4. Bhishmavadha Parva.

VII Drona Parva: 1. Dronabhisheka Parva. 2. Samshaptaka-Vadha Parva. 3. Abhimanyu-Vadha Parva. 4. Pratijna Parva. 5. Jayadratha-Vadha Parva. 6. Ghatotkacha-Vadha Parva. 7. Drona-Vadha Parva. 8. Narayanastramoksha Parva.

VIII Karna Parva

IX Salya Parva

X Sauptika Parva

XI Stree Parva

XII Jalapradanika Parva.

XIII Gadayuddha Parva.

XIV Santi Parva: Makshadharma Parva.

XV Anusasana Parva

Ashvamedhika Parva

Ashramavasika Parva

Mausala Parva

Mahaprasthanika Parva

Svargarohana Parva.

Magha Kavya

Shishupala Vadha
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaJump to:navigation, search
The Shishupala Vadha (Sanskrit: शिशुपालवध, IAST: Śiśupāla-vadha, lit. "the slaying of Shishupala") is a work of classical Sanskrit poetry (kāvya) composed by Māgha in the 7th or 8th century. It is an epic poem in 20 sargas (cantos) of about 1800 highly ornate stanzas,[1] and is considered one of the six Sanskrit mahakavyas, or "great epics". It is also known as the Māgha-kāvya after its author. Like other kavyas, it is admired more for its exquisite descriptions and lyrical quality than for any dramatic development of plot.

[edit] Contents
The tale is drawn from the Mahabharata and concerns Shishupala, king of the Chedis in central India. The 10th-century literary critic Kuntaka observes that Magha arranges the story such that the sole purpose of Vishnu's avatara as Krishna is the slaying of the evil Shishupala. Magha also invents a conflict in Krishna's mind, between his duty to destroy Shishupala, and to attend Yudhisthira's ceremony to which he has been invited; this is resolved by attending the ceremony to which Shishupala also arrives and is killed.[2]

The evil Shishupala has previously clashed with Lord Krishna many times, such as when the latter eloped with Rukmini who was betrothed to him, and defeated the combined armies of Shishupala and Rukmini's brother Rukma. When the story begins, Sage Narada reminds Krishna that while he had previously (in the form of Narasimha) killed Hiranyakashipu, the demon has been reborn as Shishupala and desires to conquer the world, and must be destroyed again.[3] Meanwhile, Yudhiṣṭhira and his brothers, having conquered the four directions and killed Jarasandha, wish to perform the Rajasuya yajña (ceremony) and Krishna has been invited. Unsure what to do (Canto II), Krishna takes the counsel of his brother Balarama and of Uddhava. While Balarama suggests attacking declaring war on Shishupala immediately, Uddhava points out that this would involve many kings and disrupt Yudhisthira's ceremony (where their presence is required). Instead, he suggests ensuring that Shishupala attends the ceremony as well. Pleased with this plan, Krishna sets out (Canto III) with his army to Indraprastha where the ceremony will be held. On the way, he sees Mount Raivataka (Canto IV), decides to camp there (Canto V), and all seasons simultaneously manifest themselves for his pleasure (Canto VI). His followers' enjoyment (Canto VII) and water sports (Canto VIII) are then described, as are nightfall (Canto IX), drinking and a general festival of love (Canto X) and dawn (Canto XI). These cantos, containing exquisite and detailed descriptions that are unrelated to the action, are usually the most popular with Sanskrit critics. The army resumes its march in Canto XII, and Krishna finally enters the city (Canto XIII). The ceremony takes place, and at the end, at Bhishma's advice, the highest honour (arghya) is bestowed on Krishna (Canto XIV). Shishupala is enraged at this (Canto XV), and makes a long speech on (what he considers) Krishna's bad qualities. He leaves the assembly. In Canto XVI, he sends a messenger to Krishna. Krishna declares war (Canto XVII), and the armies fight (Canto XVIII), with the various complex formations of the armies being matched by the complex forms Māgha adopts for his verses in Canto XIX. Finally, Krishna enters the fight (Canto XX), and after a long battle, strikes off Shishupala's head with Sudarshana Chakra, his discus.[3][4]

Despite what may appear to be little subject matter, the cantos of this work are in fact longer than those of other epics.[3]

[edit] Prashasti
The concluding five verses of the work (known as the Praśasti) mention some autobiographical details, which is rare for Indian poets.[5] They inform that his father was Dattaka and his grandfather was Suprabhadeva, a minister at the court of a king whose name is mentioned in different editions as Varmalāta, Dharmanābha, Dharmanātha, Varmalākhya, etc. These verses are therefore called the nija-vaṃśa-varṇana or kavi-vaṃśa-varṇana by commentators.[6]

[edit] Appraisal
The poet seems to have been inspired by the Kirātārjunīya of Bharavi, and intended to emulate and even surpass it. Like the Kirātārjunīya, the poem displays rhetorical and metrical skill more than the growth of the plot[7] and is noted for its intricate wordplay, textual complexity and verbal ingenuity. It has a rich vocabulary, so much so that the (untrue) claim has been made that it contains every word in the Sanskrit language.[8] The narrative also wanders from the main action solely to dwell on elegant descriptions, with almost half the cantos having little to do with the proper story[9] e.g. while describing the march of an army, cantos 9 to 11 take a detour to describe nature, sunrise and sunset, the seasons, courtesans preparing to receive men, the bathing of nymphs, and so on.[10] Because of these descriptions, the Śiśupālavadha is an important source on the history of Indian ornaments and costumes, including its different terms for dress as paridhāna, aṃśuka, vasana, vastra and ambara; upper garments as uttarīya; female lower garments as nīvī, vasana, aṃśuka, kauśeya, adhivāsa and nitambaravastra; and kabandha, a waist-band.[11] Magha is also noted for technique of developing the theme, "stirring intense and conflicting emotions relieved by lighter situations".[12] The work is primarily in the vīra (heroic) rasa (mood).[3]

In the 20th stanza of the fourth canto, Māgha describes the simultaneous setting of the sun and the rising of the moon on either side of the Meru mountain as like a mighty elephant with two bells dangling on either side of his body. This striking imagery has earned Māgha the sobriquet of Ghaṇṭāmāgha, "Bell-Māgha".[13] His similes are also highly original, and many verses from the work are of independent interest, and are quoted for their poetic or moral nature.[9][14][15][16][17]

Whereas Bhāravi glorifies Shiva, Māgha glorifies Krishna; while Bhāravi uses 19 metres Māgha uses 23, like Bhāravi's 15th canto full of contrived verses Māgha introduces even more complicated verses in his 19th.[9] A popular Sanskrit verse about Māgha (and hence about this poem, as it his only known work and the one his reputation rests on) says:

उपमा कालिदासस्य भारवेरर्थगौरवं|
दन्डिन: पदलालित्यं माघे सन्ति त्रयो गुणः||
upamā kālidāsasya, bhāraver arthagauravaṃ,
daṇḍinaḥ padalālityaṃ — māghe santi trayo guṇaḥ
"The similes of Kalidasa, Bharavi's depth of meaning, Daṇḍin's wordplay — in Māgha all three qualities are found."
Thus, Māgha's attempt to surpass Bharavi appears to have been successful; even his name seems to be derived from this feat: another Sanskrit saying goes tāvat bhā bhāraveḥ bhāti yāvat māghasya nodayaḥ, which can mean "the lustre of the sun lasts until the advent of Maagha (the coldest month of winter)", but also "the lustre of Bharavi lasts until the advent of Māgha".[18] However, Māgha follows Bhāravi's structure too closely, and the long-windedness of his descriptions loses the gravity and "weight of meaning" found in Bhāravi's poem. Consequently, Māgha is more admired as a poet than the work is as a whole, and the sections of the work that may be considered digressions from the story have the nature of an anthology and are more popular.[3] His work is also considered to be difficult, and reading it and Meghadūta can easily consume one's lifetime, according to the saying (sometimes attributed to Mallinātha) māghe meghe gataṃ vayaḥ. ("In reading Māgha and Megha my life was spent", or also the unrelated meaning "In the month of Magha, a bird flew among the clouds".)[2]

[edit] Linguistic ingenuity
Besides its poetry, the poem also revels in wordplay and ingeniously constructed verses. The second canto contains a famous verse with a string of adjectives that can be interpreted differently depending on whether they are referring to politics (rāja-nīti, king's policy) or grammar.[19] The entire 16th canto, a message from Shishupala to Krishna, is intentionally ambiguous and can be interpreted in two ways — a humble apology in courteous words, or a declaration of war.[3] The 19th canto, especially, like the 15th canto of Kirātārjunīya, contains chitrakavya or decorative composition, with many examples of constrained writing. Its third stanza, for instance, contains only the consonant 'j' in the first line, 't' in the second, 'bh' in the third, and 'r' in the fourth:[7]

तं ततोऽतितताततुत् ।
रारारिररिरीररः ॥
taṃ tato'titatātatut

"Then the warrior, winner of war, with his heroic valour, the subduer of the extremely arrogant beings, he who has the brilliance of stars, he who has the brilliance of the vanquisher of fearless elephants, the enemy seated on a chariot, began to fight."[9]
He progresses to just two consonants in the 66th stanza:[20]

भूरिभिर्भारिभिर्भीराभूभारैरभिरेभिरे ।
भेरीरेभिभिरभ्राभैरभीरुभिरिभैरिभाः ॥

"The fearless elephant, who was like a burden to the earth because of its weight, whose sound was like a kettle-drum, and who was like a dark cloud, attacked the enemy elephant."
By the 114th stanza, this is taken to an extreme, with a celebrated example involving just one consonant:[20]

दाददो दुद्ददुद्दादी दाददो दूददीददोः ।
दुद्दादं दददे दुद्दे दादाददददोऽददः ॥
dādado duddaduddādī dādado dūdadīdadoḥ
duddādaṃ dadade dudde dādādadadado'dadaḥ

"Sri Krishna, the giver of every boon, the scourge of the evil-minded, the purifier, the one whose arms can annihilate the wicked who cause suffering to others, shot his pain-causing arrow at the enemy."
The same canto also contains increasingly ingenious palindromes. The 44th stanza, for instance, has each line a palindrome:

वारणागगभीरा सा साराभीगगणारवा ।
कारितारिवधा सेना नासेधा वारितारिका ॥
vāraṇāgagabhīrā sā sārābhīgagaṇāravā /
kāritārivadhā senā nāsedhā vāritārikā

"It is very difficult to face this army which is endowed with elephants as big as mountains. This is a very great army and the shouting of frightened people is heard. It has slain its enemies."[20]
The 88th stanza is a palindrome as a whole (syllable-for-syllable), with the second half being the first half reversed. This is known as pratiloma (or gatapratyāgata) and is not found in Bharavi:[21]

तं श्रिया घनयानस्तरुचा सारतया तया ।
यातया तरसा चारुस्तनयानघया श्रितं ॥
taṃ śriyā ghanayānastarucā sāratayā tayā
yātayā tarasā cārustanayānaghayā śritaṃ

The 34th stanza is the 33rd stanza written backwards, with a different meaning. Finally, the 27th stanza is an example of what has been called "the most complex and exquisite type of palindrome ever invented".[22] Sanskrit aestheticians call it sarvatobhadra, "perfect in every direction" — it yields the same text if read forwards, backwards, down, or up:

कायसाददसायका ।
रसाहवा वाहसार-
नादवाददवादना ॥

rasāhavā vāhasāra-

sa kā ra nā nā ra kā sa
kā ya sā da da sā ya kā
ra sā ha vā vā ha sā ra
nā da vā da da vā da nā
(and the lines reversed)
nā da vā da da vā da nā
ra sā ha vā vā ha sā ra
kā ya sā da da sā ya kā
sa kā ra nā nā ra kā sa

"[That army], which relished battle (rasāhavā) contained allies who brought low the bodes and gaits of their various striving enemies (sakāranānārakāsakāyasādadasāyakā), and in it the cries of the best of mounts contended with musical instruments (vāhasāranādavādadavādanā)."
The 29th stanza can be arranged into the shape of a "drum":[20]

सा सेना गमनारम्भे
रसेनासीदनारता ।
धीरनागमनामया ॥
sā se nā ga ma nā ra mbhe
ra se nā sī da nā ra tā
tā ra nā da ja nā ma tta
dhī ra nā ga ma nā ma yā

The first, second, third, and fourth lines give the same text when read along a "drum" pattern.

"That army was very efficient and as it moved, the warrior heroes were very alert and did their duties with great concentration. The soldiers in the army made a loud sound. The army was adorned with intoxicated and restive elephants. No one was there with any thought of pain."
In the 118th stanza, each half contains the same pada twice, but with different meanings. This is known as samudga:[21]

सदैव संपन्नवपू रणेषु
स दैवसंपन्नवपूरणेषु ।
महो दधे 'स्तारि महानितान्तं
महोदधेस्तारिमहा नितान्तम् ॥
sadaiva saṃpannavapū raṇeṣu
sa daivasaṃpannavapūraṇeṣu
maho dadhe 'stāri mahānitāntaṃ
mahodadhestārimahā nitāntam

Illustration of cakrabandha constraints, with hidden message. (See Devanagari version.)The canto also includes stanzas which can be arranged into the shape of a sword,[23] zigzags, and other shapes.

Finally, it ends with a stanza (120th) in the extremely difficult "wheel design" known as cakra-vṛtta or cakrabandha,[21] wherein the syllables can be arranged in the form of a wheel with six spokes.[24][25]

सत्वं मानविशिष्टमाजिरभसादालम्ब्य भव्यः पुरो
लब्धाघक्षयशुद्धिरुद्धरतरश्रीवत्सभूमिर्मुदा ।
मुक्त्वा काममपास्तभीः परमृगव्याधः स नादं हरे-
रेकौघैः समकालमभ्रमुदयी रोपैस्तदा तस्तरे ॥

satvaṃ mānaviśiṣṭamājirabhasādālambya bhavyaḥ puro
labdhāghakṣayaśuddhiruddharataraśrīvatsabhūmirmudā /
muktvā kāmamapāstabhīḥ paramṛgavyādhaḥ sa nādaṃ hare-
rekaughaiḥ samakālamabhramudayī ropaistadā tastare //

In the figure, the first, second and third lines are read top-to-bottom along the "spokes" of the wheel, sharing a common central syllable, while the fourth line is read clockwise around the circumference (starting and ending where the third line ends), sharing every third syllable with one of the first three lines. Further, the large syllables in bold (within the annuli), read clockwise, spell out śiśupālavadha-māgha-kāvyamidaṃ ("This is Śiśupālavadha, a poem by Māgha").

[edit] Derivatives
Māgha influenced Ratnākara's Haravijaya,[26] an epic in 50 cantos that suggests a thorough study of the Shishupalavadha.[9] The Dharmashramabhyudaya, a Sanskrit poem by Hari[s]chandra in 21 cantos on Dharmanatha the 15th tirthankara, is modeled on the Shishupalavadha.[27]

The oldest known commentary on the Śiśupālavadha is that by Vallabhadeva, known as the Sandehaviṣauṣadhi. The commentary by Mallinātha is known as the Sarvaṅkaṣā,[28] and, as on the other five mahakavyas, is considered the pre-eminent one. There are numerous other commentaries on it from different parts of the country, illustrating its importance.[5]

The Marathi writer Bhaskarabhatta Borikar, of the early 14th century, wrote a Shishupala Vadha in Marathi (1308).[10]:1186

aham aham eva nasmi aham aham!

Bannange defines Aham as the Lord Himself in name; a nama pada.

Does Memory Matter?

My son's friend Vikram, all of 18, was visiting us from the US. He is a bright student, has just finished school and is on a 'gap year', a fancy term these days when youngsters take a year to travel, to laze around, to lie on a beach or 'discover themselves' as they term it. This is what had brought him to Brazil [ Images ].
"So, to what colleges are you applying?" I asked as we sat around.

College selection is a big ritual in the US, -- now in India [ Images ] too -- as students and parents agonise over their choices and come up with a list of universities, some great, others mediocre and some called a 'safety net' if all else fails. The list of 4 to 6 colleges thus arrived at is naturally all-important in the kid's mind and they discuss it with the peer group every day.

I expected Vikram to rattle off his list. But, in response he whipped out his phone, no ordinary instrument, but an iPhone. His parents can afford it. He tapped on it and read out his list. "Cornell, Indiana, Maryland... and so it went."

"What are your grades?" I asked.

Again the tapping on the iPhone and then the answer.

"OK. Now that you are in Brazil, what all do you want to see?"

Vikram began tapping again. "Copacabana beach, the statue of Christ on the hill, the Maracana stadium..." he started reading.

"Look, don't you remember all this? Do you need to refer to it each time?" I asked with some irritation.

"Why should I remember anything? This has a 8 gigabyte memory," he answered looking at me as if I was a dinosaur.

I was nonplussed for a moment.

My memory, which still works without an incitement or an instrument, made me remember my school days in Shimoga, my town in Karnataka [ Images ].

An Asthavadhani is visiting from Andhra Pradesh, the home of people with the prodigious skill of doing eight cerebral things at the same time which is what the term Asthavadhana literally means. We as children have heard of these legends and their incredible feats but are now witnessing an actual performance.

The scholar starts in Sanskrit with a story from the Mahabharata [ Images ]. Say, he is talking about the pledge of Bhisma. Even as he is developing his theme, our Kannada teacher from the school, asks him a question from the Kannada Mahabharata relating to another theme, say, Draupadi's humiliation.

The scholar now turns to this theme and starts reciting from Kumara Vyasa's version of the epic, another text, only to be interrupted by a third teacher who asks him about some intricate rules in Telagu grammar. And so on, till the Asthavadhani is holding a discourse on eight different themes, with eight pandits and coming back each time to pick up the thread exactly from where he was interrupted.

It is like playing blind chess with a roomful of Grandmasters. What a feat of memory and scholarship; of retention and recall.

A human computer, no doubt, but one with an ability to give answers in verse. Do they still exist, I wonder, with their 12 GB memories.

But even as I recall all this, with Vikram looking at me disdainfully, I begin to reflect on whether my inherent faith in the importance of good memory is something obsolete and irrelevant for Vikram's generation. Whether what our mothers and grandmothers insisted upon is now an anachronism.

"Memorise these four formulae, remember those eight equations, tell me quickly the capitals of all the Scandinavian countries and the currencies of the Balkan states, recite the sloka from the fourth chapter and then the lines from Polonius's advice to his son." Thus were we taught. Learn, memorise, recall and regurgitate. Thus did I do well in school, college and even in the IFS-IAS examination.

My mind and emory was crammed with so much that was important but also so much that was trivia, at that stage. Facts and not knowledge, and at another level, knowledge and not wisdom seemed the immediate goal. Memory was the most important endowment and instrument in the process. And here was someone, questioning the very value of memory?

Startled by this self-awareness about the mutation of yesterday's verities, I began to wonder: Were there other things that we learnt and valued, which are now becoming irrelevant, in a Googalised world? Silicon Valley had taught me about the forces of creative disruption, or is it, disruptive creation, by which changes in technology irrevocably alter lifestyles. Were they altering human attributes too?

I recalled -- my memory again -- how important 'good handwriting' was in our teen years. Back in the mist of time, children were told to practice with only pencils or at worst with 'fountain pens,' ball point pens were not good for a steady handwriting; note books were called 'exercise books' and had four coloured lines to 'exercise your calligraphy.'

This was a mantra drilled into me, but without much success causing me endless agony over my bad 'writing'. Then there were the arithmetical tables: In the conservative schools in the South, we learnt tables up to 19 and could recite 19x6= 114, 19x7=133 in our sleep. Are these still admirable skills, even if not essential?

When was the last time, I wrote by hand and without a keyboard, and when did I multiply beyond five without a calculator, I wondered.

Perhaps these are qualities and attributes that will be irretrievably given up by the human race, and one day in the evolutionary scheme of things human hands will not be so crafted as to hold a pen, but will have bent fingers for faster tapping on the keyboard? I was getting carried away.

My mind wandered in another direction. Is exercising memory good for health and happiness or is it a burden, I thought. Are we better off not carrying so much junk in our mind -- telephone numbers, birthdays, accounts particulars etc etc; better off transferring all that to the gadgetry, or are we losing something by relying on the digital memory instead of our own neuron buzz in the brain?

Researching a little on this theme, I came across enough medical evidence to show that exercising your brain and memory is as necessary a thing as exercising your body. One of the dreadful prospects in Alzheimer's is the loss of memory and there are sufficient indications to say that it is important to keep the mind alert just as one should try to keep the body fit.

But too much memory is not too good a thing either, I read. From an Indian philosophical perspective -- and J Krishnamurthy is a good example of this view -- memory creates attachments and being too wedded to the memory of the past is to lose the ability to observe and experience the present . 'Do not clutter your mind with unnecessary details' was also a management principle.

The upshot of all this academic reading was the return to the good old 'golden mean:' Memory is a tool. To forget everything is foolish, but to remember too much is also a curse. Remember your passwords, then, but don't burden yourself with memorising all your bank accounts. Commit them to a register or an address book or the iPhone, when you can afford one.

"Does memory matter?" Having wondered about all this, I turned to Google to see what it offers. Go on. Try it yourself. The first answer you get is '2x4 gb or 4x2 gb: does Ram speed memory matter?' Need I say more?

B S Prakash is the Indian Ambassador to Brazil and can be reached at

Illustration: Uttam Ghosh

Monday, May 17, 2010

Vishnu Sahasranama in Mahabharata

Mahabharata, Anushāsanaparva (Book 13), Chapter 149.
Copied from:

"Vaisampayana said, 'Having heard all the duties in their entirety and all those sacred acts and objects that cleanse human beings of their sins. Yudhishthira once more addressed the son of Santanu in the following words.'

"Yudhishthira said, "Who may be said to be the one god in the world? Who may be said to be the one object which is our sole refuge? Who is he by worshipping whom or hymning whose praises human being would get what is beneficial? What religion is that which, according to thy judgment, is the foremost of all religions? What are those Mantras by reciting which a living creature becomes freed from the bonds of birth and life?'

"Bhishma said, 'One should always, with alacrity and throwing away all languor, hymn the praises of that Lord of the universe, that god of gods (viz., Vasudeva), who is Infinite and the foremost of all Beings, by uttering His thousand names. By always worshipping with reverence and devotion that immutable Being, by meditating on him, by hymning His praises and bowing the head unto Him, and by performing sacrifices unto Him, indeed by always praising Vishnu, who is without beginning and without end or destruction, who is the Supreme Lord of all the worlds, and who is the Master and Controller of the universe, one can succeed in transcending all sorrow. Verily, He is devoted to the Brahmanas, conversant with all duties and practices, the enhancer of the fame and achievement of all persons, the master of all the worlds, exceedingly wonderful, and the prime cause of the origin of all creatures. Even this, in my judgment, is the foremost religion of all religions, viz., one should always worship and hymn the praises of the lotus-eyed Vasudeva with devotion. He is the highest Energy. He is the highest Penance. He is the highest Brahma. He is the highest refuge. He is the most holy of all holies, the most auspicious of all auspicious objects. He is the god of all the gods and He is the immutable father of all creatures. On the advent of the primal Yuga, all creatures spring from Him. On the expiration, again of a Yuga, all things disappear in Him. 1 Hear, O king, the thousand names, possessed of great efficacy in destroying sins, of that foremost one in all the worlds that Master of the universe, viz., Vishnu. All those names derived from His attributes, secret and well-known, of the high-souled Vasudeva which were sung by Rishis, I shall recite to thee for the good of all. They are, Om! He that enters all things, besides Himself, He that covers all things, He unto whom sacrificial libations are

p. 328

poured, the Lord of the Past, the Present, and the Future, the Creator (or Destroyer) of all existent things, the upholder of all existent things, the Existent, the Soul of all, the Originator of all things (I--IX); of cleansed Soul, the Supreme Soul, the highest Refuge of all emancipated persons, the Immutable, He that lies enclosed in a case, the Witness, He that knows the material case in which He resides, the Indestructible (X--XVII); 1 He upon whom the mind rests during Yoga-abstraction, the Guide or leader of all persons conversant with Yoga, the Lord of both Pradhana (or Prakriti) and Purusha. He that assumed a human form with a leonine head, He of handsome features and equipments, He of beautiful hair, the foremost of Purushas (XVIII--XXIV); 2 the embodiment of all things, the Destroyer of all things, He that transcends the three attributes of Sattwa, Rajas and Tamas, the Motionless, the Beginning of all things, the Receptacle into which all things sink at the universal Dissolution, the Immutable, He who takes birth at his own will, He who causes the acts of all living creatures to fructify (in the form of weal or woe) the Upholder of all things, the Source from which the primal elements have sprung, the Puissant One, He in whom is the unbounded Lordship over all things (XXV--XXXVII); 3 the Self-born, He that gives happiness to His worshippers, the presiding Genius (of golden form) in the midst of the Solar disc, the Lotus-eyed, Loud-voiced, He that is without beginning and without end. He that upholds the universe (in the form of Ananta and others), He that ordains all acts and their fruits, He that is superior to the Grandsire Brahma (XXXVIII--XLVI); 4 the Immeasurable, the Lord of the senses (or He

p. 329

that has curled locks), He from whose navel the primeval lotus sprang, the Lord of all the deities, the Artificer of the universe, the Mantra, He that weakens or emaciates all things, He that is vast, the Ancient one, He that is enduring (XLVII--LVI). 1 He that is incapable of being seized (by either the senses or the mind), the Eternal One, Krishna, the Red-eyed, He that kills all creatures at the time of the universal dissolution, He that is vast for knowledge and puissance and other attributes of the kind, He that resides in three parts (above, middle, and below) of every, creature. That which cleanses, is auspicious, and high (LVII--LXIV). 2 He that urges all creatures in respect of all their acts. He that causes the life-breaths to act. He that causes all living creatures to live, the Eldest, the Foremost of all those that are regarded as the Lords of all creatures, He that has gold in his abdomen, He that has the Earth for his abdomen, the Lord of Sri or Lakshmi, the Slayer of Madhu (LXV--LXXII) 3: the Omnipotent, He that is endued with great prowess, He that is armed with the bow, He that is Possessed of a mind capable of bearing the contents of all treatises, He that roves through the universe, riding on Garuda. He that is well suited to the offerings

p. 330

made unto Him and that has the power to enjoy them properly, the Unrivalled, He that is incapable of being discomfited, He that knows all acts that are done, He that is identical with all acts, He that rests on His own true self (LXXIV--LXXXIV) 1 the Lord of all the deities, He that is the Refuge of all, the embodiment of the highest felicity, He whose seed is the universe, He that is the source of all things, the day (in consequence of His awakening Jiva who is steeped in the sleep of Nescience), the Year, the Snake (owing to His being incapable of being seized), the embodiment of Conviction, He that sees all things (LXXXV--XCIV): 2 the Unborn, the Lord of all creatures, He that has achieved success, He that is Success itself, He that is the beginning of all things (in consequence of His being the cause of all things), He that is above deterioration, He that is Righteousness in the form of the bovine bull and the great boar that raised the submerged Earth, He that is of immeasurable soul, He that stands aloof from all kinds of union (XCV--CIII); 3 He that is Pauaka among the deities called Vasus (or, He that dwells in His worshippers). He that is liberal soul, being freed from wrath and hatred and pride and other evil passions. Truth whose soul is equable in consequence of His thorough impartiality, He that has been measured by His worshippers, He that is always equal, being above all change or modification, He that never refuses to grant the wishes of His worshippers, He whose eyes are like the petals of the lotus, He whose acts are always characterised by Righteousness (or He who is always engaged in granting the wishes of those that are devoted to Him), He that is of the form of Righteousness (CIV--CXIII); He that destroys all creatures (or their pains), the Many headed, He that upholds the universe, He that is the source of the universe, He who is of pure or spotless fame, the Immortal One He that is Eternal and Fixed, He that is possessed of beautiful limbs, (or, He the ascension unto whom is the best of all acts), He who has such knowledge having penance for its indication that He is able to agitable Prakriti for evolving the universe out of her (CXIV--CXXII); He that goes everywhere (in the sense of pervading all things as their cause), the Omniscient One, He that blazes forth in unmodified effulgence, He whose troops are everywhere (in the form of devoted

p. 331

associates), (or He at whose very sight the Danava troops are scattered in all directions). He that is coveted (or sought) by all (or, He that grinds all His foes), He that is the Veda, He that is conversant with the Veda, He that is conversant with all the limbs (or branches) of the Veda, He that represents the limbs (or branches) of the Veda (i.e., all the subsidiary sciences), He that settles the interpretations of the Vedas, He that has no superior in wisdom (CXXIII--CXXXIII); He that is the master of all the worlds, He that is the master of the deities, He that is the Supervisor of both Righteousness and Unrighteousness (for giving the fruits thereof to those that seek the one or the other), He that is both Effect and Cause, (or, He whose life has not been determined by acts achieved on any previous occasion in consequence of His transcending Prakriti). He that is four-souled (in consequence of His four forms of Aniruddha, Pradyumna, Sankarshana and Vasudeva). He that is known by four forms (as above), He that has four horns (which appeared on Him when He had assumed a human form with a lion's head for slaying the Asura chief Hiranya-Kasipu), He that has four arms (for holding the conch, discus, mace, and lotus) (CXXXIV--CXLI); He that blazes forth in effulgence, He that is the giver of food and cherishes those that are good; He that does not bear or put up with those that are wicked, (or, He that puts up with the occasional transgressions of his devotees); He that existed before the universe started into life; He that is stainless; He that is ever victorious; He that vanquishes the very deities; He that is the material cause of the universe; He that repeatedly resides in material causes (CXLII--CL); He that is the younger brother of Indra, (or He that transcends Indra in accomplishments and attributes). He that took birth as a dwarf (from Aditi by her husband Kasyapa in order to beguile the Asura king Vali of the sovereignty of the three worlds, and bestow the same upon Indra who had been dispossessed of it), He that is tall (in allusion to the vast universal form of His which He assumed at the sacrifice of Vali for covering Heaven, Earth, and the Nether regions with three steps of His). He whose acts are never futile, He that cleanses (those that worship Him, those that hear of Him and those that think of Him), He that is endued with pre-eminent energy and strength, He that transcends Indra in all attributes, He that accepts all His worshippers, He that is the Creation itself in consequence of His being the Causes thereof, He that upholds His self in the same form without being ever subject to birth, growth, or death, He that sustains all creatures in their respective functions in the 'universe, He that controls the hearts of all creatures (CLI--CLXII); He that deserves to be known by those who wish to achieve what is for their highest good; He who is the celestial physician in the form of Dhanwantari, (or He who cures that foremost of all diseases, viz., the bonds that bind one to the world); He that is always engaged in Yoga; He that slays

p. 332

great Asuras for establishing Righteousness; He that is the Lord of that Lakshmi who sprang from the ocean when it was churned by the deities and the Asuras, (or, He that cherishes both the goddesses of prosperity and learning); He that is honey (in consequence of the pleasure He gives to those that succeed in having a taste of him); He that transcends the senses (or is invisible to those that turn away from Him); He that is possessed of great powers of illusion (manifested in His beguiling Mahadeva and the deities on many occasions); He that puts forth great energy (in achieving mighty feats); He that transcends all in might (CLXIII--CLXXII); He that transcends all in intelligence; He that transcends all in puissance; He that transcends all in ability; He that discovers the universe by the effulgence emanating from his body; He whose body is incapable of being ascertained by the eye (or any other sense organ of knowledge); He that is possessed of every beauty; He whose soul is incapable of being comprehended by either deities or men; He that held on his back, in the form of the vast tortoise, the huge mountain, Mandara, which was made the churning staff by the deities and the Asuras when they set themselves to churn the great ocean for obtaining therefrom all the valuables hid in its bosom; (or, He who held up the mountains of Govardhana in the woods of Brinda for protecting the denizens of that delightful place, who were especial objects of His kindness, from the wrath of Indra who poured incessant showers for days together with a view to drowning every thing) (CLXXIII--CLXXX); He that can shoot His shafts to a great distance, piercing through obstruction of every kind; He that raised the submerged Earth, having assumed the form of the mighty Boar; He on whose bosom dwells the goddess of Prosperity; (or He that is identical with Kama, the lord of Rati); He that is the Refuge of those that are righteous; He that is incapable of being won without thorough devotion; (or, He that is incapable of being immured or restrained by any one putting forth his powers); He that is the delight of the deities, or, He that is the embodiment of fullness of joy; He that rescued the submerged Earth; (or He that understands the hymns addressed to him by His devotees); He that is the Master of ell eloquent persons (or He that dispels the calamities of all those who know him) (CLXXXL--CLXXXVIII); He that is full of blazing effulgence) He that suppressed the afflictions of His adorers; (or, He that assumes the form of Yama, the universal Destroyer, for chastising all persons that fall away from their duties); He that assumed the form of a Swan for communicating the Vedas to the Grandsire Brahman; (or, He that enters into the bodies of all persons); He that has Garuda, the prince of the feathery denizens of the welkin, for His vehicle; He that is the foremost of snakes in consequence of His identity with Sesha or Ananta who upholds on his head the vast Earth, (or, He that has the hood of the prince of snakes for His bed while He lies down to sleep on the vast expansion of water after the dissolution of the universe); He whose navel is as beautiful as gold; He

p. 333

that underwent the severest austerities in the form of Narayana at Vadari on the breast of Himavat; He whose navel resembles a lotus; (or, He from whose navel sprang the primeval lotus in which the Grandsire Brahma was born); He that is the Lord of all creatures (CLXXXIX--CXCVII); He that transcends death; (or, He that wards off Death from those that are devoted to him); He that always casts a kind eye on His worshippers; (or, He that sees all things in the universe); He that destroys all things; (or, He that drenches with nectar all those that worship Him with single-minded devotion); He that is the Ordainer of all ordainers; (or, He that unites all persons with the consequences of their acts); He that himself enjoys and endures the fruits of all acts, (or, He that assumed the form of Rama, the son of Dasaratha, and going into exile at the command of His sire made a treaty with Sugriva the chief of the Apes for aiding him in the recovery of his kingdom from the grasp of his elder brother Vali in return for the assistance which Sugriva promised Him for recovering from Ravana His wife Sita who had been ravished by that Rakshasa and borne away to his island home in Lanka), He that is always of the same form; (or, He that is exceedingly affectionate unto His worshippers); He that is always moving; (or, He that is of the form of Kama who springs up in the heart of every creature); He that is incapable of being endured by Danavas and Asuras (or, He that rescued His wife Sita after slaying Ravana, or, He that shows compassion towards even Chandalas and members of other low castes when they approach Him with devotion, in allusion to His friendship, in the form of Rama, for Guhaka the chief of the Chandalas, inhabiting the country known by the name of Sringaverapura); He that chastises the wicked; (or, He that regulates the conduct of all persons by the dictates of the Srutis and the Smritis); He whose soul has true knowledge for its indication; (or, He that destroyed Ravana, the foe of the gods, having assumed the form of Rama that was full of compassion and other amiable virtues); He that destroys the foes of the deities (or, He that slays those who obstruct or forbid the giving of presents unto deserving persons) (CXCVII--CCVIII); He that is the instructor in all sciences and the father of all; He that is the instructor of even the Grandsire Brahma; He that is the abode or resting place of all creatures; He that is the benefactor of those that are good and is free from the stain of falsehood; He whose prowess is incapable of being baffled; He that never casts his eye on such acts as are not sanctioned or approved by the scriptures; He that casts his eye on such acts as are sanctioned or approved by the scriptures; (or, He whose eye never winks or sleeps); He that wears the unfading garland of victory called by the name of Vaijayanti; He that is the Lord of speech and that is possessed of great liberality insomuch that He rescued the lowest of the low and the vilest of the vile by granting them His grace (CCLX--CCXVIII); He that leads persons desirous of Emancipation to the foremost of all conditions, viz., Emancipation itself; (or, He that assumes the form of a mighty Fish and scudding through

p. 334

the vast expanse of waters that cover the Earth when the universal dissolution comes, and dragging the boat tied to His horns, leads Manu and others to safety); He that is the leader of all creatures; (or, He that sports in the vast expanse of waters which overwhelm all things at the universal dissolution); He whose words are the Veda and who rescued the Vedas when they were submerged in the waters at the universal dissolution; He that is the accomplisher of all functions in the universe; He that assumes the form of the wind for making all living creatures act or exert themselves; (or, He whose motions are always beautiful, or, who wishes His creatures to glorify Him); He that is endued with a thousand heads; He that is the Soul of the universe and as such pervades all things; He that has a thousand eyes and a thousand legs; (CCXIX--CCXXVI); He that causes the wheel of the universe to revolve at His will; He whose soul is freed from desire and who transcends those conditions that invest Jiva and to which Jiva is liable; He that is concealed from the view of all persons that are attached to the world; (or, He that has covered the eyes of all persons with the bandage of nescience); He that grinds those that turn away from him; He that sets the days a-going in consequence of His being identical with the Sun; He that is the destroyer of all-destroying Time itself; He that conveys the libations poured on the sacred fire unto those for whom they are intended; (or, He that bears the universe, placing it on only a minute fraction of His body); He that has no beginning; (or, He that has no fixed habitation) He that upholds the Earth in space (in the form of Sesha, or, rescues her in the form of the mighty boar or supports her as a subtil pervader) (CCXXVII--CCXXXV); He that is exceedingly inclined to grace, insomuch that He grants happiness to even foes like Sisupala; He that has been freed from the attributes of Rajas (passion) and Tamas (darkness) so that He is pure or stainless Sattwa by itself; (or, He that has obtained the fruition of all His wishes); He that supports the universe; He that feeds (or enjoys the universe); He that is displayed in infinite puissance; He that honours the deities, the Pitris, and His own worshippers; He that is honoured or adored by those that are themselves honoured or adored by others; (or, He whose acts are all beautiful and enduring); He that accomplishes the purposes of others; (or, He that is the benefactor of others); He that withdraws all things unto Himself at the universal dissolution; (or, He that destroys the foes of the deities or of His worshippers); He that has the waters for his home; (or, He that is the sole Refuge of all creatures or He that destroys the ignorance of all creatures (CCXXXVI--CCXLVI); He that is distinguished above all, He that cherishes the righteous, He that cleanses all the worlds, He that crowns with fruition the desires of all creatures, He whose wishes are always crowned with fruition, He that gives success to all, He that bestows success upon those that solicit Him for it (CCXLVII--CCLVI); He that presides over all sacred days; (or, He that overwhelms Indra himself with His own excellent attributes), He

p. 335

that showers all objects of desire upon His worshippers, He that walks over all the universe, He that offers the excellent flight of steps constituted by Righteousness (unto those that desire to ascend to the highest place); He that has Righteousness in His abdomen; (or, He that protects Indra even as a mother protects the child in her womb); He that aggrandises (His worshippers), He that spreads Himself out for becoming the vast universe, He that is aloof from all things (though pervading them); He that is the receptacle of the ocean of Srutis (CCLVII--CCLXIV); He that is possessed of excellent arms (i.e., arms capable of upholding the universe); He that is incapable of being borne by any creature, He from whom flowed the sounds called Brahman (or Veda), He that is the Lord of all Lords of the universe, He that is the giver of wealth, He that dwells in His own puissance, He that is multiform, He that is of vast form, He that resides in the form of Sacrifice in all animals, He that causes all things to be displayed (CCLXV--CCLXXIV), He that is endued with great might, energy, and splendour; He that displays Himself in visible forms to His worshippers, He that scorches the unrighteous with His burning energy, He that is enriched with the sixfold attributes (of affluence, etc.), He that imparted the Veda to the Grandsire Brahma, He that is of the form of the Samans, Riks, and Yajuses (of the Veda); He that soothes His worshippers burning with the afflictions of the world like the rays of the moon cooling all living creatures of the world, He that is endued with blazing effulgence like the sun (CCLXXV--CCLXXXII); He from whose mind has sprung the moon, He that blazes forth in His own effulgence, He that nourishes all creatures even like the luminary marked by the hare, He that is the Master of the deities, He that is the great medicine for the disease of worldly attachment, He that is the great causeway of the universe, He that is endued with knowledge and other attributes that are never futile and with prowess that is incapable of being baffled (CCLXXXIII--CCLXXXIX); He that is solicited by all creatures at all times, viz., the Past, the Present, and the Future; He that rescues his worshippers by casting kind glances upon them, He that sanctifies even them that are sacred; He that merges the life-breath in the Soul; (or, He that assumes diverse forms for protecting both the Emancipated and the Unemancipated); He that kills the desires of those that are Emancipated; (or, He that prevents evil desires from arising in the minds of His worshippers); He that is the sire of Kama (the principle of desire or lust); He that is most agreeable, He that is desired by all creatures, He that grants the fruition of all desires, He that has the ability to accomplishing all acts (CCXC--CCXCIX); He that sets the four Yugas to begin their course; He that causes the Yugas to continually revolve as on a wheel, He that is endued with the diverse kinds of illusion (and, therefore, the cause from which spring the different kinds of acts that distinguish the different Yugas); He that is the greatest of eaters (in consequence of His swallowing all things at the

p. 336

end of every Kalpa); He that is incapable of being seized (by those that are not His worshippers); He that is manifest (being exceedingly vast); He that subjugates thousands of foes (of the deities); He that subjugates innumerable foes (CCC--CCCVIII); He that is desired (by even the Grandsire and Rudra, or He that is adored in sacrifices); He that is distinguished above all; He that is desired by those that are endued with wisdom and righteousness; He that has an ornament of (peacock's) feathers on His headgear; He that stupefies all creatures with His illusion; He that showers His grace on all His worshippers; He that kills the wrath of the righteous; He that fills the unrighteous with wrath; He that is the accomplisher of all acts; He who holds the universe on his arms; He that upholds the Earth (CCCIX--CCCXVIII); He that transcends the six well-known modifications (of inception, birth or appearance growth, maturity, decline, and dissolution); He that is endued with great celebrity (in consequence of His feats); He that causes all living creatures to live (in consequence of His being the all-pervading soul); He that gives life; the younger brother of Vasava (in the form of Upendra or the dwarf); He that is the receptacle of all the waters in the universe; He that covers all creatures (in consequence of His being the material cause of everything); He that is never heedless (being always above error); He that is established on His own glory (CCCXIX--CCCXXVII); He that flows in the form of nectar; (or, He that dries up all things); He upholds the path of righteousness; He that bears the burden of the universe; He that gives desirable boons unto those that solicit them: He that causes the winds to blow; He that is the son of Vasudeva; (or, He that covers the universe with His illusions and sports in the midst of it); He that is endued with extraordinary lustre; He that is the originating cause of the deities; He that pierces all hostile towns (CCCXXVIII--CCCXXXVI); He that transcends all sorrow and grief; He that leads us safely across the ocean of life or the world; He that dispels from the hearts of all His worshippers the fear of rebirth; He that is possessed of infinite courage and prowess; He that is an offspring of Sura's race; He that is the master of all living creatures; He that is inclined to show His grace unto all; He that has come on earth for a hundred times (for rescuing the good, destroying the wicked, and establishing righteousness); He that holds a lotus in one of his hands; He whose eyes resemble the petals of the lotus (CCCXXXVII--CCCXLVI); He from whose navel sprang the primeval lotus; (or, He that is seated upon a lotus); He that is endued with eyes resembling the petals of the lotus; He that is adored by even worshippers as one seated within the lotus of His hearts; He that assumed the form of embodied Jiva (through His own illusion); He that is endued with puissance of every kind; He that grows in the form of the five primal elements; the Ancient Soul; He that is endued with vast eyes; He that has Garuda sitting on the standard of His car (CCCXLVII--CCCCLV); He that is incomparable; the Sarabha (the lion-killing animal); He that

p. 337

strikes the wicked with terror; He that knows everything that has occurred in Time; He that accepts, in the forms of the deities, the butter poured on the sacrificial fire; He that is known by all kinds of evidence or proof; He upon whose breast sits Prosperity always; He that is victorious in every battle (CCCLVI--CCCLXIV); He that is above destruction; He that assumes a red form; (or, becomes wrathful unto the enemies of His worshippers); He that is an object of search with the righteous; He that is at the root of all things; He that has the mark of the string around his abdomen (for Yasoda had bound Him with a cord while He was Krishna); He that bears or forgives all injuries; He that upholds the Earth in the form of her mountains; He that is the foremost of all objects of worship; He that is endued with great speed; He that swallows vast quantities of food (CCCLXV--CCCLXXIV); He that caused the creation to start into life; He that always agitates both Prakriti and Purusha; He that shines with resplendence; (or, sports in joy); He that has puissance in his stomach; He that is the Supreme Master of all; He that is the material out of which the universe has been made; He that is the cause or Agent who has made the universe: He that is independent of all things; He that ordains variety in the universe; He that is incapable of being comprehended; He that renders Himself invisible by the screen of illusion (CCCLXXV--CCCLXXXV); He that is Chit divested of all attributes; He on whom all things rest; He in whom all things reside when the universal dissolution comes; He that assigns the foremost place to those that worship Him; He that is durable; He that is endued with the highest puissance; He that has been glorified in the Vedanta; He that is contented; He that is always full; He whose glance is auspicious (CCCLXXXVI--CCCXCV); He that fills all Yogins with delight; He that is the end of all creatures (for it is in Him that all things merge at the universal dissolution); He that is the faultless Path; He that in the form of Jiva, leads to Emancipation; He that leads (Jiva to Emancipation); He that has none to lead Him; He that is endued with great might; He that is the foremost of all beings possessed of might; He that uphold He that is the foremost of all Beings conversant with duty and religion (CCCXCVI--CDIV); He that joins, at the time of creation, the disunited elements for forming all objects; He that resides in all bodies; He that causes all creatures to act in the form of Kshetrajna; He that creates all creatures after destroying them at the universal dissolution; He unto whom every one bows with reverence; He that is extended over the entire universe; He that owns the primeval golden egg as his abdomen (whence, as from the female uterus), everything proceeds; He that destroys the foes of the deities; He that overspreads all things (being the material cause whence they spring); He that spreads sweet perfumes; He that disregards the pleasures of the senses (CDV--CDXV); He that is identifiable with the seasons; He at whose sight alone all worshippers succeed in obtaining the great object of their wish; He that weakens

p. 338

all creatures; He that dwells in the firmament of the heart, depending upon His own glory and puissance; He that is capable of being known everywhere (in consequence of His omnipresence); He that inspires everyone with dread; He in whom all creatures dwell; He that is clever in accomplishing all acts; He that constitutes the rest of all creatures (being, as He is, the embodiment of Emancipation); He that is endued with competence greater than that of other Beings (CDXVI--CDXXV); He in whom the whole Universe is spread out? He that is Himself immobile and in whom all things rest for ever; He that is an object of proof; He that is the Indestructible and unchanging seed; He that is sought by all (in consequence of His being happiness); He that has no desire (in consequence of all His desires having been gratified); He that is the great cause (which covers the universe): He that has all sorts of things to enjoy; He that has great wealth wherewith to secure all objects of desire (CDXXVI--CDXXXIV); He that is above despair; He that exists in the form of Renunciation; He that is without birth; He that is the stake unto which Righteousness is tethered; He that is the great embodiment of sacrifice; He who is the nave of the starry wheel that revolves in the firmament; 1 He that is the Moon among the constellations; He that is competent to achieve every feat; He that stays in His own soul when all things disappear He that cherishes the desire for Creation (CDXXXV--CDXLIV); He that is the embodiment of all sacrifices; He that is adored in all sacrifices and religious rites; He that is the most adorable of the deities present in the sacrifices that men perform; He that is the embodiment of all such sacrifices in which animals are offered up according to the ordinance; He that is adored by persons before they take any food; 2 He that is the Refuge of those that seek emancipation; He that beholds the acts and omissions of all creatures; He whose soul transcends all attributes; He that is possessed of omniscience; He that is identical with knowledge that is unacquired, unlimited, and capable of accomplishing everything (CDXLV--CDLIV); He that is observant of excellent vows (chief amongst which is the granting of favour unto one that solicits it with a pure heart); He that has a face always full of delight; He that is exceedingly subtle; He that utters the most agreeable sounds (in the form of the Veda or as Krishna playing on the lute); He that gives happiness (to all His worshippers); He that does good to others without expecting any return; He that fills all creatures with delight; He that has subdued wrath; He that has mighty arms (so mighty that He has slain as if in sport the mightiest of Asuras); He that tears those that are unrighteous (CDLV--CDLXIV); He that causes those persons who are destitute of

p. 339

knowledge of the soul to be steeped in the deep sleep of His illusion; He that relies on Himself (being entirely independent of all persons and things); He that overspreads the entire universe; He that exists in infinite forms; He that is engaged in vocations infinite in number; He that lives in everything; He that is full of affection towards all His worshippers; He that is the universal father (all living creatures of the universe being as calves sprung from Him); He that holds, in the form of the vast Ocean, all jewels and gems in His abdomen, He that is the Lord of all treasures (CDLXV--CDLXXIV); He that is the protector of righteousness; He that accomplishes all the duties of righteousness; He that is the substratum of righteousness; He that is existent for all time; He that is non-existent (in the form of the universe, for the manifested universe is the result of illusion); He that is destructible (in the form of the universe); He that is indestructible as Chit; He that is, in the form of Jiva, destitute of true knowledge; He that is, in the form of the Sun, is endued with a thousand rays; He that ordains (even all such great and mighty creatures as Sesha and Garuda, etc.); He that has created all the Sastras (CDLXXV--CDLXXXV); He that exists, in the form of the Sun, as the centre of innumerable rays of light; He that dwells in all creatures; He that is possessed of great prowess; He that is the Master of even Yama and others of similar puissance; He that is the oldest of the deities (existing as He does from the beginning); He that exists in His own glory, casting off all conditions; He that is the Lord of even all the deities; He that is the ruler of even him that upholds the deities (viz., Indra) (CDLXXXVI--CDXCIII); He that transcends birth and destruction; He that tended and protected kine (in the form of Krishna); He that nourishes all creatures; He that is approachable by knowledge alone; He that is Ancient; He that upholds the elements which constitute the body; He that enjoys and endures (weal and woe, in the form of Jiva); He that assumed the form of a vast Boar; (or, He that, in the form of Rama, was the Lord of a large monkey host); He that gave plentiful presents unto all in a grand sacrifice performed by Him (CDXCIV--DII); He that drinks Soma in every sacrifice; He that drinks nectar; He that, in the form of Soma (Chandramas), nourishes all the herbs and plants; He that conquers foes in a trice when even they are infinite in number; He that is of universal form and is the foremost of all existent entities; He that is the chastiser; He that is victorious over all; He whose purposes are incapable of being baffled; He that deserves gifts; He that gives what His creatures have not and who protects what they have (DIII--DXII); He that holds the life-breaths; He that beholds all His creatures as objects of direct vision; He that never beholds anything beside His own Self; He that gives emancipation; He whose footsteps (three in number) covered Heaven, Earth, and the Nether regions; He who is the receptacle of all the water; He that overwhelms all Space, all Time, and all things; He that lies on the vast expanse of waters after the universal dissolution; He that causes the destruction of all things (DXIII--DXXI); He that is without birth; He

p. 340

that is exceedingly adorable; He that appears in His own nature; He that has conquered all foes (in the form of wrath and other evil passions); He that delights those that meditate on Him; He that is joy; He that fills others with delight; He that swells with all causes of delight; He that has truth and other virtues for His indications; He whose foot steps are in the three worlds (DXXII--DXXX); He that is the first of the Rishis (being conversant with the entire Vedas); He that is identical with the preceptor Kapila; He that is the knower of the Universe; He that is Master of the Earth; He that has their feet; He that is the guardian of the deities; He that has large horns (in allusion to the piscatory form in which He saved Manu on the occasion of the universal deluge by scudding through the waters with Manu's boat tied to His horns); He that exhausts all acts by causing their doers to enjoy or endure their fruits; (or, He that grinds the Destroyer himself) (DXXXI--DXXXVIII); the great Boar: He that is understood or apprehended by the aid of the Vedanta; He that has beautiful troops (in the form of His worshippers); He that is adorned with golden armlets; He that is concealed (being knowledge with the aid of the Upanishads only); He that is deep (in knowledge and puissance); He that is difficult of access; He that transcends both word and thought, that is armed with the discus and the mace (DXXXIX--DXLVII); the Ordainer; He that is the cause (in the form of helper of the universe); He that has never been vanquished; He that is the Island-born Krishna; He that is enduring (in consequence of His transcending decay): He that mows all things and is Himself above deterioration; the Varuna (the deity of the waters); the son of Varuna (in the form of Vasishtha or Agastya); He that is immovable as a tree; He that is displayed in His own true form in the lotus of the heart; He that creates, preserves, and destroys by only a fiat of the mind (DXLVIII--DLVIII); He that is possessed of the sixfold attributes (of sovereignty etc.); He that destroys the sixfold attributes (at the universal dissolution); He that is felicity (in consequence of His swelling with all kinds of prosperity); He that is adorned with the triumphal garland (called Vaijayanta); He that is armed with the plough (in allusion to His incarnation as Valadeva); He that took birth from the womb of Aditi (in the form of the dwarf that beguiled Vali); He that is endued with effulgence like unto the Sun's; He that endures all pairs of opposites (such as heat and cold, pleasure and pain, etc.); He that is the foremost Refuge of all things (DLIX--DLXVIII); He that is armed with the best of bows (called Saranga); He that was divested of His battle-axe (by Rama of Bhrigu's race); 1 He that is fierce; He that is the giver of all objects of desire; He that is so tall as to touch the very heavens with

p. 341

his head (in allusion to the form He assumed at Valis sacrifice); He whose vision extends over the entire universe; He that is Vyasa (who distributed the Vedas); He that is the Master of speech or all learning; He that has started into existence without the intervention of genital organs (DLXVIII--DLXXVI); He that is hymned with the three (foremost) Samans; He that is the singer of the Samans; He that is the Extinction of all worldly attachments (in consequence of His being the embodiment of Renunciation); He that is the Medicine; He that is the Physician (who applies the medicine); He that has ordained the fourth or last mode of life called renunciation (for enabling His creatures to attain to emancipation); He that causes the passions of His worshippers to be quieted (with a view to give them tranquillity of soul); He that is contented (in consequence of His utter dissociation with all worldly objects); He that is the Refuge of devotion and tranquillity of Soul (DLXXVII--DLXXXV); He that is possessed of beautiful limbs; He that is the giver of tranquillity of soul; He that is Creator; He that sports in joy on the bosom of the earth; He that sleeps (in Yoga) lying on the body of the prince of snakes, Sesha, after the universal dissolution; the Benefactor of kine; (or, He that took a human form for relieving the earth of the weight of her population); the Master of the universe; the Protector of the universe; He that is endued with eyes like those of the bull; He that cherishes Righteousness with love (DLXXXVI--DXCV): He that is the unreturning hero; He whose soul has been withdrawn from all attachments; He that reduces to a subtle form the universe at the time of the universal dissolution; He that does good to His afflicted worshippers; He whose name, as soon as heard, cleanses the hearer of all his sins; He who has the auspicious whorl on His breast; He in whom dwells the goddess of Prosperity for ever; He who was chosen by Lakshmi (the goddess of Prosperity) as her Lord; He that is the foremost one of all Beings endued with prosperity (DXCVI--DCIV); He that give prosperity unto His worshippers; the Master of prosperity; He that always lives with those that are endued with prosperity; He that is the receptacle of all kinds of prosperity; He that gives prosperity unto all persons of righteous acts according to the measure of their righteousness; He that holds the goddess of Prosperity on his bosom; He that bestows prosperity upon those that hear of, praise, and mediate on Him; He that is the embodiment of that condition which represents the attainment of unattainable happiness; He that is possessed of every kind of beauty; He that is the Refuge of the three worlds (DCV--DCXIV); He that is possessed of beautiful eye; He that is possessed of beautiful limbs; He that is possessed of a hundred sources of delight; He that represents the highest delight; He that is the Master of all the luminaries in the firmament (for it is He that maintains them in their places and orbits); He that has subjugated His soul; He whose soul is not swayed by any superior Being; He that is always of beautiful acts; He whose doubts have all been dispelled (for

p. 342

[paragraph continues] He is said to behold the whole universe as an Amlaka in His palm) (DCXV--DCXXIII); He that transcends all creatures; He whose vision extends in all directions: He that has no Master; He that at all times transcends all changes; He that (in the form of Rama) had to lie down on that bare ground; He that adorns the earth (by His incarnations); He that is puissance's self; He that transcends all grief; He that dispels the griefs of all His worshippers as soon as they remember His (DCXXIV--DCXXXII); He that is possessed of effulgence, He that is worshipped by all; He that is the water-pot (as all things reside within Him); He that is of pure soul; He that cleanses all as soon as they hear of him; He that is free and unrestrained; He whose car never turns away from battles; He that is possessed of great wealth; He whose prowess is incapable of being measured (DCXXXIII--DCXLI); He that is the slayer of the Asura named Kalanemi; He that is the Hero; He that has taken birth in the race of Sura; He that is the Lord of all the deities; the soul of the three worlds; the Master of the three worlds; He that has the solar and lunar rays for his hair; the slayer of Kesi; He that destroys all things (at the universal dissolution) (DCXLII--DCL); the Deity from whom the fruition of all desires is sought; He that grants the wishes of all; He that has desires; He that has a handsome form; He that is endued with thorough knowledge of Srutis and Smritis; He that is possessed of a form that is indescribable by attributes; He whose brightest rays overwhelm heaven; He that has no end; He that (in the form of Arjuna or Nara) acquired vast wealth on the occasion of his campaign of conquest (DCLI--DCLX); He who is the foremost object of silent recitation, of sacrifice, of the Vedas, and of all religious acts; He that is the creator of penances and the like; He that is the form of (the grandsire) Brahman, He that is the augmentor of penances; He that is conversant with Brahma; He that is of the form of Brahmana; He that has for His limbs Him that is called Brahma; He that knows all the Vedas and everything in the universe; He that is always fond of Brahmanas and of whom the Brahmanas also are fond (DCLXI--DCLXX); He whose footsteps cover vast areas; He whose feats are mighty; He who is possessed of vast energy; He that is identical with Vasuki, the king of the snakes; He that is the foremost of all sacrifices; He that is Japa, that first of sacrifices; He that is the foremost of all offerings made in sacrifices (DCLXXI--DCLXXVIII); 1 He that is hymned by all; He that loves to be hymned (by his worshippers); He that is himself the hymns uttered by His worshippers; He that is the very act of hymning; He that is the person that hymns; He that is fond of battling (with everything that is evil); He that is full in every respect; He that fills others with every kind of affluence; He that destroys all sins as soon as He is remembered;

p. 343

[paragraph continues] He whose acts are all righteous; He that transcends all kinds of disease (DCLXXIX--DCLXXXIX); He that is endued with the speed of the mind; He that is the creator and promulgator of all kinds of learning; He whose vital seed is gold; He that is giver of wealth (being identical with Kuvera the Lord of treasures); He that takes away all the wealth of the Asuras; the son of Vasudeva; He in whom all creatures dwell; He whose mind dwells in all things in thorough identity with them; He that takes away the sins of all who seek refuge in him (DCXC--DCXCVIII); He that is attainable by the righteous; He whose acts are always good; He that is the one entity in the universe; He that displays Himself in diverse forms; He that is the refuge of all those that are conversant with truth; He who has the greatest of heroes for his troops; 1 He that is the foremost of the Yadavas; He that is the abode of the righteous He that sports in joy (in the woods of Brinda) on the banks of Yamuna (DCXCIX--DCCVVII); He in whom all created things dwell; the deity that overwhelms the universe with His Maya (illusion); He in whom all foremost of Beings become merged (when they achieve their emancipation) He whose hunger is never gratified; He that humbles the pride of all; He that fills the righteous with just pride; He that swells with joy; He that is incapable of being seized; He that has never been vanquished (DCCVII--DCCXVI); He that is of universal form; He that is of vast form; He whose form blazes forth with energy and effulgence; He that is without form (as determined by acts); He that is of diverse forms; (He that is unmanifest); He that is of a hundred forms; He that is of a hundred faces (DCCXVII--DCCXXIV); He that is one; He that is many (through illusion); He that is full of felicity; He that forms the one grand topic of investigation; He from whom is this all; He that is called THAT; He that is the highest Refuge; He that confines Jiva within material causes; He that is coveted by all; He that took birth in the race of Madhu; He that is exceedingly affectionate towards His worshippers (DCCXXV--DCCXXXV); He that is of golden complexion; He whose limbs are like gold (in hue); He that is possessed of beautiful limbs; He whose person is decked with Angadas made with sandal-paste; He that is the slayer of heroes; He that has no equal; He that is like cipher (in consequence of no attributes being affirmable of Him); He that stands in need of no blessings (in consequence of His fulness); He that never swerves from His own nature and puissance and knowledge; He that is mobile in the form of wind (DCCXXXVI--DCCXLV); He that never identifies Himself with anything that is not-soul; 2 He that confers honours on His worshippers; He that is honoured by all; He that is the Lord of the three worlds; He that upholds the three worlds; He that is possessed of intelligence

p. 344

and memory capable of holding in His mind the contents of all treatises; He that took birth in a sacrifice; He that is worthy of the highest praise; He whose intelligence and memory are never futile; He that upholds the earth (DCCXLVI--DCCLV); He that pours forth heat in the form of the Sun; He that is the bearer of great beauty of limbs; He that is the foremost of all bearers of weapons; He that accepts the flowery and leafy offerings made to Him by His worshippers; He that has subdued all his passions and grinds all His foes; He that has none to walk before Him; He that has four horns; He that is the elder brother of Gada (DCCLVI--DCCLXIV); He that has four arms; He from whom the four Purushas have sprung; He that is the refuge of the four modes of life and the four orders of men; He that is of four souls (Mind, Understanding, Consciousness, and Memory); He from whom spring the four objects of life, viz., Righteousness, Wealth, Pleasure, and Emancipation; He that is conversant with the four Vedas; He that has displayed only a fraction of His puissance (DCCLXV--DCCLXXII); He that sets the wheel of the world to revolve round and round; He whose soul is dissociated from all worldly attachments; He that is incapable of being vanquished; He that cannot be transcended; He that is exceedingly difficult of being attained; He that is difficult of being approached; He that is difficult of access; He that is difficult of being brought within the heart (by even Yogins); He that slays even the most powerful foes (among the Danavas) (DCCLXXIII--DCCLXXXI); He that has beautiful limbs; He that takes the essence of all things in the universe; He that owns the most beautiful warp and woof (for weaving this texture of fabric of the universe); He that weaves with ever-extending warp and woof; He whose acts are done by Indra; He whose acts are great; He who has no acts undone; He who has composed all the Vedas and scriptures (DCCLXXXII--DCCLXXXIX); He whose birth is high; He that is exceedingly handsome; He whose heart is full of commiseration; He that has precious gems in His navel; He that has excellent knowledge for His eye; He that is worthy of worship by Brahman himself and other foremost ones in the universe; He that is giver of food; He that assumed horns at the time of the universal dissolution; He that has always subjugated His foes most wonderfully; He that knows all things; He that is ever victorious over those that are of irresistible prowess (DCCXC--DCCXCIX); He whose limbs are like gold; He that is incapable of being agitated (by wrath or aversion or other passion); He that is Master of all those who are masters of all speech; He that is the deepest lake; He that is the deepest pit; He that transcends the influence of Time; He in whom the primal elements are established (DCCC--DCCCVI); He that gladdens the earth; He that grants fruits which are as agreeable as the Kunda flowers (Jasmim pubescens, Linn); He that gave away the earth unto Kasyapa (in His incarnation as Rama); He that extinguishes the three kinds of misery (mentioned in the Sankhya philosophy) like a rain-charged cloud cooling

p. 345

the heat of the earth by its downpour; He that cleanses all creatures; He that has none to urge Him; He that drank nectar; He that has an undying body; He that is possessed of omniscience; He that has face and eyes turned towards every direction (DCCCVIII--DCCCXVI); He that is easily won (with, that is, such gifts as consist of flowers and leaves); He that has performed excellent vows; He that is crowned with success by Himself; He that is victorious over all foes; He that scorches all foes; He that is the ever-growing and tall Banian that overtops all other trees; He that is the sacred fig tree (Ficus glomerata, Willd); He that is the Ficus religiosa; (or, He that is not durable, in consequence of His being all perishable forms in the universe even as he is all the imperishable forms that exist); He that is the slayer of Chanura of the Andhra country (DCCCXVII--DCCCXXV); He that is endued with a thousand rays; He that has seven tongues (in the forms of Kali, Karali, etc.); He that has seven flames (in consequence of His being identical with the deity of fire); He that has seven horses for bearing His vehicle; (or, He that owns the steed called Sapta); He that is formless; He that is sinless: He that is inconceivable; He that dispels all fears; He that destroys all fears (DCCCXXVI--DCCCXXXIV); He that is minute; He that is gross; He that is emaciated; He that is adipose; He that is endued with attributes; He that transcends all attributes; He that is unseizable; He that suffers Himself to be easily seized (by His worshippers); He that has an excellent face; He that has for His descendants the people of the accidental regions; He that extends the creation consisting of the fivefold primal elements (DCCCXXXV--DCCCXLVI); He that bears heavy weights (in the form of Ananta); He that has been declared by the Vedas; He that is devoted to Yoga; He that is the lord of all Yogins; He that is the giver of all wishes; He that affords an asylum to those that seek it; He that sets Yogins to practise Yoga anew after their return to life upon the conclusion of their life of felicity in heaven; He that invests Yogins with puissance even after the exhaustion of their merits; He that has goodly leaves (in the form of the Schhandas of the Vedas, Himself being the tree of the world); He that causes the winds to blow (DCCCXLVII--DCCCLVI); He that is armed with the bow (in the form of Rama); He that is conversant with the science of arms; He that is the rod of chastisement; He that is chastiser; He that executes all sentences of chastisement; He that has never been vanquished; He that is competent in all acts; He that sets all persons to their respective duties; He that has none to set Him to any work; He that has no Yama to slay Him (DCCLVII--DCCCLXVI); He that is endued with heroism and prowess; He that has the attribute of Sattwa (Goodness); He that is identical with Truth; He that is devoted to Truth and Righteousness; He that is sought by those who are resolved to achieve emancipation; (or, He towards whom the universe proceeds when the dissolution comes); He that deserves to have all objects which His

p. 346

worshippers present unto Him; He that is worthy of being adored (with hymns and flowers and other offering of reverence); He that does good to all; He that enhances the delights of all (DCCCLXVII--DCCCLXV); He whose track is through the firmament; He that blazes forth in His own effulgence; He that is endued with great beauty; He that eats the offerings made on the sacrificial fire; He that dwells everywhere and is endued with supreme puissance; He that sucks the moisture of the earth in the form of the Sun; He that has diverse desires; He that brings forth all things; He that is the parent of the universe; He that has the Sun for His eye (DCCCLXXVI--DCCCLXXXV); He that is Infinite; He that accepts all sacrificial offerings; He that enjoys Prakriti in the form of Mind; He that is giver of felicity; He that has taken repeated births (for the protection of righteousness and the righteous); He that is First-born of all existent things; He that transcends despair (in consequence of the fruition of all His wishes); He that forgives the righteous when they trip; He that is the foundation upon which the universe rests; He that is most wonderful (DCCCLXXXVI--DCCCXCV); He that is existent from the beginning of Time; He that has been existing from before the birth of the Grandsire and others; He that is of a tawny hue; (or, He that discovers or illumines all existent things by His rays); He that assumed the form of the great Boar; He that exists even when all things are dissolved; He that is the giver of all blessings; He that creates blessings; He that is identifiable with all blessings; He that enjoys blessings; He that is able to scatter blessings (DCCCXXI--CMV); He that is without wrath; He that lies ensconced in folds (in the form of the snake Sesha); (or, He that is adorned with ear-rings); He that is armed with the discus; He that is endued with great prowess; He whose sway is regulated by the high precepts of the Srutis and the Smritis; He that is incapable of being described by the aid of speech; He whom the Vedantas have striven to express with the aid of speech; He that is the dew which cools those who are afflicted with the three kinds of grief; He that lives in all bodies, endued with the capacity of dispelling darkness (CMVI--CMXIV); He that is divested of wrath; He that is well-skilled in accomplishing all acts by thought, word, and deed; He that can accomplish all acts within the shortest period of time; He that destroys the wicked; He that is the foremost of all forgiving persons; He that is foremost of all persons endued with knowledge; He that transcends all fear; He whose names and feats, heard and recited, lead to Righteousness (CMXV--CMXXII), He that rescues the Righteous from the tempestuous ocean of the world; He that destroys the wicked; He that is Righteousness; He that dispels all evil dreams; He that destroys all bad paths for leading His worshippers to the good path of emancipation; He that protects the universe by staying in the attribute of Sattwa; He that walks along the good path; He that is Life; He that exists overspreading the universe (CMXXIII--CMXXXI); He that is of infinite forms; He that is endued with infinite

p. 347

prosperity; He that has subdued wrath; He that destroys the fears of the righteous; He that gives just fruits, on every side, to sentient beings according to their thoughts and acts; He that is immeasurable Soul; He that bestows diverse kinds of fruits on deserving persons for their diverse acts; He that sets diverse commands (on gods and men); He that attaches to every act its proper fruit (CMXXXII--CMXL); He that has no beginning; He that is the receptacle of all causes as well as of the earth; He that has the goddess of Prosperity ever by his side; He that is the foremost of all heroes; He that is adorned with beautiful armlets; He that produces all creatures; He that is the original cause of the birth of all creatures; He that is the terror of all the wicked Asuras; He that is endued with terrible prowess (CMXLI--CMXLIX); He that is the receptacle and abode of the five primal elements; He that gulps down His throat all creatures at the time of the universal dissolution; He whose smile is as agreeable as the sight of flowers; (or, He who laughs in the form of flowers); He that is always wakeful; He that stays at the head of all creatures; He whose conduct consists of those acts which the Righteous do; He that revives the dead (as in the case of Parikshit and others); He that is the initial syllable Om; He that has ordained all righteous acts (CML--CMLVIII); He that displays the truth about the Supreme Soul; He that is the abode of the five life-breaths and the senses; He that is the food which supports the life of living creatures; He that causes all living creatures to live with the aid of the life-breath called Prana; He that is the great topic of every system of philosophy; He that is the One Soul in the universe; He that transcends birth, decrepitude, and death (CMLIX--CMLXV); He that rescues the universe in consequence of the sacred syllable Bhuh, Bhuvah, Swah, and the others with which Homa offerings are made; He that is the great rescuer; He that is the sire of all; He that is the sire of even the Grandsire (Brahman); He that is of the form of Sacrifice; He that is the Lord of all sacrifices (being the great deity that is adored in them); He that is the sacrificer; He that has sacrifices for his limbs; He that upholds all sacrifices (CMLXXVI--CMLXXXV); He that protects sacrifices; He that has created sacrifices; He that is the foremost of all performers of sacrifices; He that enjoys the rewards of all sacrifices; He that causes the accomplishment of all sacrifices; He that completes all sacrifices by accepting the full libation at the end; He that is identical with such sacrifices as are performed without desire of fruit; He that is the food which sustains all living creatures; He that is also the eater of that food (CMLXXVI--CMLXXXIV); He that is Himself the cause of His existence; He that is self-born; He that penetrated through the solid earth (and repairing to the nether regions slew Hiranyaksha and others); He that sings the Samans; He that is the delighter of Devaki; He that is the creator of all; He that is the Lord of the earth; He that is the destroyer of the sins of his worshippers (CMLXXXV--CMXXCII); He that bears the conch (Panchajanya) in His hands; He that bears the sword of

p. 348

knowledge and illusion; He that sets the cycle of the Yugas to revolve ceaselessly; He that invests Himself with consciousness and senses; He that is endued with the mace of the most solid understanding. He that is armed with a car-wheel; He that is incapable of being agitated; He that is armed with all kinds of weapons (CMXCIII--M). Om, salutations to Him!

'Even thus have I recited to thee, without any exception, the thousand excellent names of the high-souled Kesava whose glory should always be sung That man who hears the names every day or who recites them every day, never meets with any evil either here or hereafter. If a Brahmana does this he succeeds in mastering the Vedanta; if a Kshatriya does it, he becomes always successful in battle. A Vaisya, by doing it, becomes possessed of affluence, while a Sudra earns great happiness. If one becomes desirous of earning the merit of righteousness, one succeeds in earning it (by hearing or reciting these names). If it is wealth that one desires, one succeeds in earning wealth (by acting in this way). So also the man who wishes for enjoyments of the senses succeeds in enjoying all kinds of pleasures, and the man desirous of offspring acquires offspring (by pursuing this course of conduct). That man who with devotion and perseverance and heart wholly turned towards him, recites these thousand names of Vasudeva every day, after having purified himself, succeeds in acquiring great fame, a position of eminence among his kinsmen, enduring prosperity, and lastly, that which is of the highest benefit to him (viz., emancipation itself). Such a man never meets with fear at any time, and acquires great prowess and energy. Disease never afflicts him; splendour of complexion, strength, beauty, and accomplishments become his. The sick become hale, the afflicted become freed from their afflictions; the affrighted become freed from fear, and he that is plunged in calamity becomes freed from calamity. The man who hymns the praises of that foremost of Beings by reciting His thousand names with devotion succeeds in quickly crossing all difficulties. That mortal who takes refuge in Vasudeva and who becomes devoted to Him, becomes freed of all sins and attains to eternal Brahma. They who are devoted to Vasudeva have never to encounter any evil. They become freed from the fear of birth, death, decrepitude, and disease. That man who with devotion and faith recites this hymn (consisting of the thousand names of Vasudeva) succeeds in acquiring felicity of soul, forgiveness of disposition, Prosperity, intelligence, memory, and fame. Neither wrath, nor jealousy, nor cupidity, nor evil understanding ever appears in those men of righteousness who are devoted to that foremost of beings. The firmament with the sun, moon and stars, the welkin, the points of the compass, the earth and the ocean, are all held and supported by the prowess of the high-souled Vasudeva. The whole mobile and immobile universe with the deities, Asuras, and Gandharvas, Yakshas, Uragas and Rakshasas, is under the sway of Krishna. The senses, mind, understanding, life, energy,

p. 349

strength and memory, it has been said, have Vasudeva for their soul. Indeed, this body that is called Kshetra, and the intelligent soul within, that is called the knower of Kshetra, also have Vasudeva for their soul. Conduct (consisting of practices) is said to be the foremost of all topics treated of in the scriptures. Righteousness has conduct for its basis. The unfading Vasudeva is said to be the lord of righteousness. The Rishis, the Pitris, the deities, the great (primal) elements, the metals, indeed, the entire mobile and immobile universe, has sprung from Narayana. Yoga, the Sankhya Philosophy, knowledge, all mechanical arts, the Vedas, the diverse scriptures, and all learning, have sprung from Janardana. Vishnu is the one great element or substance which has spread itself out into multifarious forms. Covering the three worlds, He the soul of all things, enjoys them all. His glory knows no diminution, and He it is that is the Enjoyer of the universe (as its Supreme Lord). This hymn in praise of the illustrious Vishnu composed by Vyasa, should be recited by that person who wishes to acquire happiness and that which is the highest benefit (viz., emancipation). Those persons that worship and adore the Lord of the universe, that deity who is inborn and possessed of blazing effulgence, who is the origin or cause of the universe, who knows on deterioration, and who is endued with eyes that are as large and beautiful as the petals of the lotus, have never to meet with any discomfiture.'"


327:1 The Hindu sages never attempt to speculate on the original creation of the universe. Their speculations, however, are concerned with what is called Avantara srishti or that creation which springs forth with the awakening of Brahman. Creation and Destruction have occurred ceaselessly and will occur ceaselessly. The original creation is impossible to conceive as Eternity cannot have a beginning.

328:1 Putatman means, of cleansed Soul. This implies that though He is the Lord or ruler of all existent objects, yet He is dissociated from them The Refuge of the Emancipated--Comp. Gita, 'Mamupetya tu Kaunteya punarjanma na vidyate,' etc., Purusha is He that lies in a pura or the nine-doored mansion, i.e., the body. Sakshi or Witness implies that He sees all things directly, without any medium obstructing His vision. Kshetrajna implies the Chit lying within the body and who knows the body; however, being inert, is not cognisant of the Chit it holds.

328:2 He is called Yoga because of the mind resting upon Him while it is in Yoga abstraction. Pradhana, in Sankhya philosophy, is another name of Prakriti or original Nature. All things have sprung from the union of Prakriti and Purusha. Vasudeva, however, transcends Prakriti and Purusha and is their Lord. Narasinghavapu--He assumed the human form with a lion's head for slaying the Asura Hiranyakasipu, the father of Prahlada.

328:3 Sarva implies the source of all existent and non-existent things and that in which all existent and non-existent things become merged at the universal dissolution. Sambhava signifies Him who takes birth at His own will. Acts cannot touch him. The birth of all other beings is determined by their acts in previous lives. Com. Gita, Paritranaya sadhunam etc. sambhavami yuge yuge. Bhuvana means one who attaches to acts their respective fruits i.e., he in consequence of whom the weal and woe of all creatures flow as due to acts.

328:4 Sambhu implies one whose birth has not been determined by extraneous circumstances, or other influences than his own wish, the birth of all other creatures being determined by forces extraneous to themselves. Aditya may also mean the foremost one among the deities especially called the Adityas. They are twelve in number. Dhatri p. 329 may also imply one who upholds everything in the universe by multiplying Himself infinitely. Dhaturuttama may, besides, signify one who as Chit is superior to all elements like Earth, Water, etc., which constitute all that is not-Chit.

329:1 Aprameya is, literally, immeasurable. Sankara thus explains it: He has no such attributes as sound, etc; in consequence of this He is not an object of direct perception by the sense; nor can He be an object of inference, in consequence of there being nothing to which belong the same attributes as His, etc. His inconceivability is the foundation of His immeasurableness. Hrishikesa is regarded by European scholars as a doubtful word. The Hindu commentators do not regard it so. It implies the lord of the senses i.e., One who has his sense under complete control. Or, it may mean One who sways the sense of others, i.e., causes them to exercise their functions. Sankara proposes another meaning, viz. He that is the form of the Sun or the Moon and as such, the rays of light emanating from those luminaries and gladdening all creatures, are the hairs on His head. Manu is another name for Mantra or sacred words having great efficacy.

329:2 Krishna is one of the foremost names of the supreme God-head. It means One who is always in transports of joy. It is derived from krish which implies to be, and na meaning final Emancipation or cessation of existence; the compound probably means One in whom every attribute has been extinguished; hence, absence of change, of sorrow, of gift, etc., or, eternal and highest joy. Lohitaksha is Red-eyed, from His eyes being of the hue of polished copper. Pratardana, according to Sankara, means the killer of all creatures. Others take it as implying one who destroys the cheerlessness of his worshippers. Prabhuta is One who is Great or Vast in consequence of Knowledge, Puissance, Energy, and Renunciation, etc.; Pavitram, Mangalam, Param should be taken as one name, although each of them has a separate meaning.

329:3 Pranada is interpreted variously. It may mean He that causes the life-breaths to operate; He that, as Time suspends the life-breaths (i.e., kills all creatures); He that connects the life-breaths (i.e., set them a-going when threatened with extinction; hence, healer of diseases). Prana implies He who is the cause of the life of every living creature being Himself, as it were, the life-breath that inspires them. Hiranyagarbha signifies He that is identical with the Grandsire. Bhugarbha is one who has the Earth for his abdomen, implying that all things on Earth are in His abdomen.

330:1 Atmavan, other Beings are said to be Sariravan, Indriyavan, etc., in consequence of the possession of such attributes as Sarira, Indriya, etc. But the Supreme God-head is nothing but soul. He rests on his own true nature or essence without requiring anything extraneous like the deities or human beings whereon to live or exist,

330:2 Aha is the day; He is so called because of Jiva being, as it were, awakened when he goes to Him. As long as Jiva is at a distance from Him, he is steeped in the sleep of Avidya or Nescience (a happy word which Professor Max Muller has coined) Samvatsara or the year He is so called because Time is His essence. Vyala--He is a huge and fierce snake that inspires dread.

330:3 Vrishakapi is otherwise explained by Valadeva Vidyabhushan, as He that showers blessings upon His worshippers and causes all His foes to tremble with fear.

338:1 Vishnu is supposed to be within the constellation called Sisumara or the Northern Bear. The stars, without changing their places per se, seem to revolve round this point within the constellation named.

338:2 In India, no man should worship the deities, with a full stomach. Indeed, one must abstain from every kind of food and drink if one has to worship the deities formally.

340:1 Rama of Bhrigu's race went to Mahadeva for acquiring the science of arms. While dwelling in Siva's retreat, he had a quarrel with Karttikeya or Kumara, the son of Siva's loins. Rama worsted his preceptor's son in battle, at which his preceptor, gratified with him, made him a present of his own battle-axe, wherewith the regenerate here exterminated the Kshatriyas for full one and twenty times.

342:1 Many of these words beginning with Mahat represent Krishna's own words as spoken to Arjuna in the Gita. 'I am the foremost of sacrifices; I am the foremost of sacrificers,' etc.

343:1 Referring to Hanumat and others among the apes that Rama led against Ravana.

343:2 The universe consists of Soul and Not-soul. Jiva, when cased in matter or Not-soul takes Not-soul for himself, in his ignorance. In fact until true knowledge is attained, the body is taken for self.