Imatges de pÓgina

"He must eat without distraction of mind.”

"Let him honor all his food, and eat it without contempt; when he sees it, let him rejoice and be calm, and pray, that he may always obtain it."

"Food, eaten constantly with respect, gives muscular force and generative power; but, eaten irreverently, destroys them both."

"It is delivered as a rule of the gods, that meat must be swallowed only for the purpose of sacrifice; but it is a rule of gigantic demons, that it may be swallowed for any other purpose."


"By falsehood, the sacrifice becomes vain; by pride, the merit of devotion is lost; by insulting priests, life is diminished; and by proclaiming a largess, its fruit is destroyed."

"To a king, on the throne of magnanimity, the law ascribes instant purification, because his throne was raised for the protection of his people, and the supply of their nourishment."

"The hand of an artist employed in his art is always pure."

"Bodies are cleansed by water; the mind is purified by truth; the vital spirit, by theology and devotion; the understanding, by clear knowledge."

"If thou be not at variance by speaking falsely with Yama the Subduer of all, with Vaivaswata the Punisher, with that great divinity who dwells in the breast, go not on a pilgrimage to the river Ganga, nor to the plains of Curu, for thou hast no need of expiation."

"Whoever cherishes not five orders of beings, — the deities, those who demand hospitality, those whom he ought by law to maintain, his departed forefathers, and himself, — that man lives not, even though he breathe."

"To all the gods assembled let him throw up his oblation in open air; by day, to the spirits who walk in light; and by night, to those who walk in darkness."

"Some, who well know the ordinances for those oblations, perform not always externally the five great sacraments, but continually make offerings in their own organs."

"Some constantly sacrifice their breath in their speech, when they instruct others, or praise God aloud, and their speech in their breath, when they meditate in silence; perceiving in their speech and breath, thus employed, the imperishable fruit of a sacrificial offering."

"The act of repeating his Holy Name is ten times better than the appointed sacrifice; a hundred times better, when it is heard by no man; and a thousand times better, when it is purely mental."

"Equally perceiving the supreme soul in all beings, and all beings in the supreme soul, he sacrifices his own spirit by fixing it on the spirit of God, and approaches the nature of that sole divinity, who shines by his own effulgence."


"A Brahmin, who is the giver of spiritual birth, the teacher of prescribed duty, is by right the father of an old man, though himself be a child."

"Cari, child of Angiras, taught his paternal uncles and cousins to read the Veda, and, excelling them in divine. knowledge, said to them Little sons.'

"They, moved with resentment, asked the gods the meaning of that expression; and the gods, being assembled, answered them, 'The child has addressed you properly; '

"For an unlearned man is in truth a child; and he who teaches him the Veda is his father: holy sages have always said child to an ignorant man, and father to a teacher of scripture."

"Greatness is not conferred by years, not by gray hairs, not by wealth, not by powerful kindred; the divine sages have established this rule: Whoever has read the Vedas, and their Angas, he among us is great.'"

"The seniority of priests is from sacred learning; of warriors, from valor; of merchants, from abundance of grain; of the servile class, only from priority of birth."

"A man is not therefore aged, because his head is gray; him, surely, the gods considered as aged, who, though young in years, has read and understands the Veda."

"Let not a sensible teacher tell what he is not asked, nor what he is asked improperly; but let him, however intelligent, act in the multitude as if he were dumb."

"A teacher of the Veda should rather die with his learning, than sow it in sterile soil, even though he be in grievous distress for subsistence."


"Justice, being destroyed, will destroy; being preserved, will preserve; it must therefore never be violated. Beware, O judge, lest Justice, being overturned, overturn both us and thyself."

"The only firm friend, who follows men even after death, is Justice; all others are extinct with the body."

"The soul is its own witness; the soul itself is its own refuge offend not thy conscious soul, the supreme internal witness of men."

"O friend to virtue, that supreme spirit, which thou believest one and the same with thyself, resides in thy bosom perpetually, and is an all-knowing inspector of thy goodness or of thy wickedness."

"Action, either mental, verbal, or corporeal, bears good or evil fruit, as itself is good or evil; and from the actions of men proceed their various transmigrations in the highest, the mean, and the lowest degree."

"Iniquity, committed in this world, produces not fruit immediately, but, like the earth, in due season; and, advancing by little and little, it eradicates the man who committed it."

"Yes; iniquity, once committed, fails not of producing fruit to him who wrought it; if not in his own person, yet in his sons; or, if not in his sons, yet in his grandsons."

"He grows rich for a while through unrighteousness; then he beholds good things; then it is, that he vanquishes his foes; but he perishes at length from his whole root upwards."

"If the vital spirit had practised virtue for the most part, and vice in a small degree, it enjoys delight in celestial abodes, clothed with a body formed of pure elementary particles."

"But, if it had generally been addicted to vice, and seldom attended to virtue, then shall it be deserted by those pure elements, and, having a coarser body of sensible nerves, it feels the pains to which Yama shall doom it."

"Souls, endued with goodness, attain always the state of deities; those filled with ambitious passions, the condition of men; and those immersed in darkness, the nature of beasts: this is the triple order of transmigration."

"Grass and earth to sit on, water to wash the feet, and affectionate speech, are at no time deficient in the mansions of the good."


"He, sure, must be the perfect essence of majesty, by whose favor Abundance rises on her lotos; in whose favor dwells conquest; in whose anger, death."


"The names of women should be agreeable, soft, clear, captivating the fancy, auspicious, ending in long vowels, resembling words of benediction."

In the second quarter of the Brahmin's life, when he has left his instructor, to commence house-keeping,

"Let him choose for his wife a girl, whose form has no defect; who has an agreeable name; who walks gracefully, like a phenicopteros, or like a young elephant; whose hair and teeth are moderate respectively in quantity and in size; whose body has exquisite softness."

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"When a Brahmin springs to light, he is born above the world, the chief of all creatures, assigned to guard the treasury of duties religious and civil.”

"Whatever exists in the universe, is all in effect the wealth of the Brahmin, since the Brahmin is entitled to it all by his primogeniture and eminence of birth."

"The Brahmin eats but his own food; wears but his own apparel; and bestows but his own in alms: through the benevolence of the Brahmin, indeed, other mortals enjoy life."

"Although Brahmins employ themselves in all sorts of mean occupation, they must invariably be honored; for they are something transcendently divine."

"He must avoid service for hire."

"He may either store up grain for three years, or garner

up enough for one year, or collect what may last three days, or make no provision for the morrow."

"Let him never, for the sake of a subsistence, have recourse to popular conversation; let him live by the conduct of a priest, neither crooked, nor artful, nor blended with the manners of the mercantile class."

"Let him not have nimble hands, restless feet, or voluble eyes; let him not be crooked in his ways; let him not be flippant in his speech, nor intelligent in doing mischief." "He must not gain wealth by any art that pleases the sense; nor by any prohibited art; nor, whether he be rich or poor, indiscriminately."

"Though permitted to receive presents, let him avoid a habit of taking them; since, by taking many gifts, his divine light soon fades."

"A twice-born man, void of true devotion, and not having read the Veda, yet eager to take a gift, sinks down together with it, as with a boat of stone in deep water."

"A Brahmin should constantly shun worldly honor, as he would shun poison; and rather constantly seek disrespect, as he would seek nectar."

"For, though scorned, he may sleep with pleasure; with pleasure may he awake; with pleasure may he pass through this life but the scorner utterly perishes.'


"All that depends on another gives pain; all that depends on himself gives pleasure; let him know this to be in few words the definition of pleasure and of pain."

As for the Brahmin who keeps house,

"Let him say what is true, but let him say what is pleasing; let him speak no disagreeable truth, nor let him speak agreeable falsehood: this is a primeval rule."


"Let him say well and good,' or let him say 'well' only; but let him not maintain fruitless enmity and altercation with any man."

"Giving no pain to any creature, let him collect virtue by degrees, for the sake of acquiring a companion to the next world, as the white ant by degrees builds his nest."

"For, in his passage to the next world, neither his father, nor his mother, nor his wife, nor his son, nor his kinsmen, will remain in his company: his virtue alone will adhere to him."

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