Satapatha-Brâhmana, Part 60

BY: SUN STAFF - 22.6 2018

A serial presentation of the Satapatha Brahmana, translated by Julius Eggeling in 1882.


First Kânda - The Darsapûrnamâsa-Ishtî or New And Full-Moon Sacrifices

Ninth Adhyâya – Second Brâhmana, Part Two


1:9:2:25 - 25. He (the Adhvaryu) now makes the samishtayagus-oblation, thinking, 'In the east my sacrifice shall be completed!' Were he to perform the samishtayagus-oblation first and then the patnîsamyâgas, that sacrifice of his would be completed in the west (behind the sacrificer) [3]: hence he makes the samishtayagus-oblation at this particular time, thinking, 'In the east my sacrifice shall be completed!'

1:9:2:26 - 26. Now as to why it is called samishtayagus [1]: whatever deities he invites through this (new or full-moon) sacrifice, and for whichever deities this sacrifice is performed, all those are thereby 'sacrificed to together' (sam-ishta); and because he now makes a (butter) oblation [2] to all those deities, who have been 'sacrificed to together,' therefore this (oblation) is called samishtayagus.

1:9:2:27 - 27. And again as to why he performs the samishtayagus: whatever deities he invites through this sacrifice, and for whichever deities this sacrifice is performed, they continue waiting until the samishtayagus is performed, thinking, 'This he must offer to us!' These same (deities) he thereby dismisses in due form; and whatever be the practice in their case in accordance with that he has, in thus performing it, produced the sacrifice, and having thus produced it he now establishes it safely where there is a safe basis for it: this is why he performs the samishtayagus.

1:9:2:28 - 28. He makes the offering, with the text (Vâg. S. II, 21 b), 'Ye path-finding gods,'--for the gods are indeed the finders of the path [1];--'Having found the path--,' thereby he says, 'having found the sacrifice;'--'Walk in the path!' thereby he dismisses them in due form;--'O divine Lord of mind, this sacrifice--Svâhâ!--give to the wind!' for the sacrifice, indeed, is that blowing one (the wind). Having accordingly prepared this (special) sacrifice, he thereby establishes it safely in that (chief, full or new-moon) sacrifice, and thus unites sacrifice with sacrifice: for this reason he says, 'Svâhâ! give (it) to the wind!'

1:9:2:29 - 29. He then offers up the barhis, The barhis, truly, is this world, and the barhis (consists of) plants: hence he thereby bestows plants on this world, and these plants are safely established in this world: for this reason he offers up the barhis.

1:9:2:30 - 30. This offering he makes as an additional one, since the samishtayagus is the end of the sacrifice, and consequently what comes after the samishtayagus is additional; and because, in performing the samishtayagus, he offers to those (deities [2]), and thence additional unlimited plants are here produced.

1:9:2:31 - 31. He offers it, with the text (Vâg. S. II, 22), 'May the barhis combine with the sacrificial food, with the butter! May Indra combine with the Âdityas, the Vasus, the Maruts, and the Visve Devâh! May what (has been offered with) "Svâhâ" go up to the heavenly ether [3]!'

1:9:2:32 - 32. Having thereupon walked round (from the north side of the Âhavanîya fire) to the south, he pours the pranîtâ-water [1] out (on the altar). Now, when he spreads the sacrifice, he yokes it. But were he not to pour out (the pranîtâ-water), the sacrifice, being unyoked, would, in moving backward, injure the sacrificer. In this way, however, the sacrifice does not injure the sacrificer; and for this reason he pours out the pranîtâ-water, after walking round to the south.

1:9:2:33 - 33. He pours it out, with the text (Vâg. S. II, 23 a), 'Who [2] unyokes thee? He unyokes thee! For whom does he unyoke thee? For him he unyokes thee! For plenty!' He thereby announces to the sacrificer the highest prosperity. He pours it out with the same (vessel) with which he brings it forward; for wherewith they yoke the team, therewith they also unyoke it; with the yoke-tie they yoke it, and with the yoke-tie they unyoke it. By means of a potsherd he now throws the refuse from the cleaning of the rice [3] right under the black antelope skin; with the text (Vâg. S. II, 23 b), 'The Rakshas' share art thou!'

1:9:2:34 - 34. Now the gods and the Asuras, both of them sprung from Pragâpati, were contending about this sacrifice, (that is, their) father Pragâpati, the year. 'Ours it (he) shall be! ours it shall be,' they said.

1:9:2:35 - 35. Thereupon the gods obtained possession of the whole of the sacrifice, and dispossessed those (Asuras) of it by (giving them) what was the worst part of the sacrifice, to wit, with the blood of the victim (they dispossessed them) of the animal sacrifice, and with the refuse of the rice of the haviryagña. 'May they be duly dispossessed of the sacrifice,' they thought for he indeed is duly dispossessed, who is dispossessed even while obtaining a (worthless) share. He, on the other hand, who is dispossessed without any share whatever, hopes for a while, and when it occurs to him, he says, 'What share hast thou given me?' Hence what share the gods set apart for those (Asuras), that same share he now makes over to them in pouring (the refuse of the rice) right under the black antelope skin. He thereby casts it into blind darkness, where there is no (sacrificial) fire. And in the same way he casts the blood of the victim into blind darkness, where there is no fire; thinking, 'Thou art the Rakshas' share!' For this reason they use not the gore of the victim (for sacrificial purposes), since it is the Rakshas' share.



256:1 The meaning of the term seems to be 'offerings made (to some deities) along with the wives (of the gods);' the deities to whom the four offerings are made, being Soma, Tvashtri, the Devapatnyah (wives of the gods), and Agni Grihapati.

256:2 The lady of the house occupies a seat south-west of the Gârhapatya fire. See I, 3, 1, 12. The Adhvaryu now sits down with raised knees (south of her, with his face to the north-east). Kâty. III, 7, 5. The Âgnîdhra sits down in the same way north of the fire, with his face to the south, and the Hotri in the middle; cf. Hillebrandt, Neu- and Vollm. p. 151.

257:1 Or, 'is produced from the hind-part of the sacrifice,' i.e. from the sacrificer's wife, seated behind the altar, see par. 3.

258:1 The Adhvaryu calls on the Hotri: 'For Soma (Tvashtri, &c. respectively)' (in a low voice)--'recite!' (aloud). The Hotrithen recites the invitatory prayer (anuvâkyâ, for which see Âsv. Sr. I, 10, 5) in a low voice, except the concluding 'om!' which he pronounces aloud. The Adhvaryu now calls on the Âgnîdhra, who responds with 'Astu sraushat.' Thereupon the Adhvaryu calls on the Hotri; 'For Soma,' &c. (in a low voice),--'pronounce the offering prayer!' (aloud); and the Hotrirecites the yâgyâ, in a low voice, except the concluding 'Vaushat,' which is pronounced aloud, and simultaneously with which the Adhvaryu pours the oblation (consisting of four ladlings of butter from the butter-pot into the guhû, by means of the sruva) into the fire.

258:2 He does so in his capacity of divine artificer and architect.

259:1 Gighatsanti, 'eat greedily, swallow their food.' The Kânva text does not mention Yâgñavalkya, but merely says, 'hence women also here swallow their food apart from men.'

259:2 The idâ-ceremony (I, 8, 1, 18) is repeated after the patnîsamyâgas, together with the Samyuvâka and the offering of remains, but with special reference to the mistress of the house. Since the prastara-bunch and the enclosing-sticks have already been consumed by the fire, the Sûktavâka is omitted on the present occasion; the Adhvaryu merely throwing a stalk of the reed-grass of the veda into the fire, as a substitute for the stalk of the prastara (representing the sacrificer).

259:3 See I, 8, 3, 11 seq.

260:1 See I, 8, 3, 19 seq.

260:2 That is, after the Hotri has again recited the Samyuvâka, in the same way as above, I, 9, I, 26-29.

260:3 Viz. at the offering of the remains of butter (I, 8, 3, 23), of which the present ceremony is the counterpart. Dr. Hillebrandt, Neu- and Vollm. p. 160, (after a scholiast) calls this modification Pragraha-homa (offered to Agni adabdhâyu asîtama). According to Kâty. III, 7, 18; 19, this ceremony is followed by the performance, in the Dakshina fire, of two (guhoti) oblations of butter, to Agni samvesapati and Sarasvatî respectively (see the formulas Vâg. S. II, 20, b, c); and the pishtalepa-âhuti to the Visve Devâh, being an offering of the remnants of dough, left from the preparation of the sacrificial cakes. These offerings would then be succeeded by the ceremonies treated in par. 22 seq.

261:1 Harisvâmin derives asîtama and asishtha from as, 'to eat' (instead of from as, 'to reach, penetrate'), hence 'the greatest eater.' Mahîdhara gives both derivations.

262:1 According to Katy. III, 8, 2, the lady thereupon unties the grass-cord with which she was girt (see I, 3, 1, 12), with the text, 'I free myself from Varuna's noose wherewith the gracious Savitri bound me; place me unscathed, together with my husband, in the lap of eternal law, in the world of righteousness!' Âsv. I, 11, 3, however, assigns this ceremony to the Hotri; and no doubt rightly, since it is not mentioned by our author, and the Vâg. S. does not give the formula. Thereby also the original form of the text (Rig-veda X, 85, 24), 'I free thee,' &c., is preserved. Mahîdhara on Vâg. S. here takes 'veda' either in the sense of 'the Veda (Rik, &c.),' or as 'the knower.' Perhaps it should rather be taken as 'the obtainer.'

262:2 Thus â vedeh is explained by Harisvâmin (according to comm. on Katy. III, 8, 3). Others take it in the sense of 'up to where the barhis begins.'

262:3 The patnîsamyâgas were performed in the Gârhapatya fire, and therefore west of the altar; and on their completion, the priests betake themselves back to the Âhavanîya.

263:1 The real original meaning of the term would rather seem to have been 'the formula marking the completion of the sacrifice,' it having afterwards come to be applied to the oblation (to the wind-god) itself. Cf. par. 30 and Weber, Ind. Stud. IX, 232,

263:2 Or rather, 'because to all those deities to whom an ishti (or yagati-offering, made by the Adhvaryu standing south of the altar; and followed or accompanied by the vashat-call) has been offered in common, he now makes an âhuti (or guhoti-offering, made by him whilst standing north of the altar, with the svâhâ-call).'

264:1 Mahîdhara refers gâtu-vidah and vittvâ to vid, 'to know.'

264:2 According to Harisvâmin, he does so, since that offering is made for the sake of dismissing (satisfying) the deities.

264:3 Mahîdhara interprets, 'May Indra--together with the Âdityas, the Vasus, the Maruts, and the Visve Devâh--anoint the barhis thoroughly with the havis-like ghee,' &c.

265:1 See p. 9, note 1.

265:2 Or, Pragâpati . . ., see I, 1, 1, 13, with note.

265:3 See I, 1, 4, 23-24. According to the Paddhati on Katy. III, 8, the Adhvaryu holds the deer-skin with his left hand over the utkara, or heap of rubbish, and pours the refuse under the skin on the utkara.