Satapatha-Brâhmana, Part 105

BY: SUN STAFF - 24.9 2018

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


Second Kânda - The Agnyâdhâna, The Agnihotra, The Pindapitriyagña, The Âgrayaneshti, And The Kâturmâsyâni


2:5:3:11 - 11. Then there is this other. The same altar covered (with sacrificial grass) which has served for the Maruts, the Scorchers, is (used now). Near this covered altar they lay down the enclosing-sticks and pieces of firewood; and having had (the cows) milked in the same way (as before) he cooks the rice-pap. The butter he puts on so as to be no mere accessory [4]

Having cooked (the pap) and basted it, and removed it (from the fire), he anoints it. He then removes the butter in the pot (from the fire), and wipes the dipping and offering spoons. Thereupon, taking the dish with the pap, he walks up (to the altar); and again, taking the butter in the pot, he walks up; and again, taking the dipping and offering spoons, he walks up (to the altar). He then touches that covered altar, lays the enclosing-sticks round (the Âhavanîya fire), and puts on as many pieces of wood as he thinks fit. He then deposits successively [1] (in their respective places) the dish with the pap, the pot with butter, and the dipping and offering spoons. The Hotri sits down in the Hotri's seat. Taking the dipping and offering spoons, he (the Adhvaryu) says,--

2:5:3:12 - 12. 'Pronounce the invitatory prayer to Agni!' with a view to (offering) Agni's butter-portion. He then takes four 'cuttings' of butter from the pot and steps across (to the offering-place on the south side of the fire). Having stepped across and called for the (Âgnîdhra's) Sraushat, he says (to the Hotri), 'Pronounce the offering-prayer to Agni!' and pours out the oblation, as soon as the Vashat has been uttered.

2:5:3:13 - 13. He then says, 'Pronounce the invitatory prayer to Soma!' with a view to Soma's butter-portion. He then takes four cuttings of butter from the pot, and steps across. Having stepped across, and called for the Sraushat, he says, 'Pronounce the offering-formula to Soma!' and pours out the oblation, as soon as the Vashat has been uttered.

2:5:3:14 - 14. Thereupon he says, 'Pronounce the invitatory prayer to the Maruts, the Householders!' He then makes an 'under-layer' of butter (in the guhû), takes two cuttings from that pap, pours some butter thereon, re-anoints (replenishes with butter the parts of the sacrificial dish from which he has made) [1] the two cuttings, and steps across (to the offering-place). Having stepped across and called for the Sraushat, he says, 'Pronounce the offering-prayer to the Maruts, the Householders!' and pours out the oblation, as soon as the Vashat has been uttered.

2:5:3:15 - 15. Thereupon he says, 'Pronounce the invitatory prayer to Agni Svishtakrit!' He then makes an under-layer of butter, takes one cutting from the pap, pours twice butter thereon, without, however, re-anointing the (place of the) cutting; and steps across. Having stepped across, and called for the Sraushat, he says, 'Pronounce the offering-prayer to Agni Svishtakrit!' and pours out the oblation, as soon as the Vashat has been uttered.

2:5:3:16 - 16, He then cuts off the Idâ, but no fore-portion. Having invoked (the Idâ), they (the priests) eat it. As many members of (the sacrificer's) household as are entitled to partake of the remains of sacrificial food [1] may eat (of the pap); or the officiating priests may eat it; or, if there be abundant pap, other Brâhmans also may eat of it. The pot having then been covered, before it is quite emptied, they put it away in a safe place, for the 'full-spoon ceremony.' Thereupon they let the calves together with their mothers; and thus the cattle take that nourishment. That night he performs the Agnihotra with rice-gruel. In the morning they milk a cow, which suckles an adopted calf [2], for the purpose of the offering to the fathers.

2:5:3:17 - 17. Thereupon, in the morning, either after or before the performance of the Agnihotra--whichever he pleases--he cuts out (the remaining rice-pap) with the darvi-spoon [3] from the un-emptied pot, with the text (Vâg. S. III, 49), 'Full, O spoon, fly away, well filled fly back to us! O thou (Indra), of a hundredfold powers, let us two barter food and drink, like wares!' In like manner as an invitatory prayer (is used at offerings) so does he by this (verse) invite him (Indra) to that share.

2:5:3:18 - 18. Let him then tell (the Sacrificer) to make a bull roar. 'If it roars,' say some, 'then that (sound) is the Vashat; let him offer after that Vashat.' And in this way indeed he calls Indra in his own form to the slaying of Vritra [1]; for the bull is indeed Indra's form: hence he thereby calls Indra in his own form to the slaying of Vritra. If it roars, then one may know that Indra has come to his sacrifice, that his sacrifice is with Indra. And should it not roar, let the priest, seated on the south side (viz. the Brahman), say, 'Sacrifice!'--this, indeed, is Indra's voice.

2:5:3:19 - 19. He offers with the text (Vâg. S. III, 50), 'Give unto me, (and) I give unto thee. Bestow (gifts) on me, (and) I bestow on thee [2]! And mayest thou give me guerdon, (and) I will give thee guerdon! Svâhâ!'

2:5:3:20 - 20. He then offers a cake on seven potsherds to the sportive (Krîdinah) Maruts. For when Indra went forward in order to slay Vritra, the sportive Maruts were sporting around him singing his praises; and even so do they sport around this (Sacrificer), singing his praises, now that he is about to slay his wicked, spiteful enemy: this is why (he sacrifices) to the sportive Maruts [1]. Thereupon (follows the performance) of the Great Oblation (Mahâ-havis): this (performance) is in accordance with that of the great (seasonable) oblation [2].



408:1 The performance of the Sâkamedha offerings requires two days. In the first place--after the Âhavanîya has been 'taken out' from the Gârhapatya--both fires are taken up by means of (or 'made to mount') the two kindling-sticks, and transferred (by 'churning out') to another altar (the uttaravedi). On the first day oblations are then made to Agni Anîkavat, the Marutah Sântapanâh and the Maruto Grihamedhinah, these being completed on the next morning by a Darvihoma to Indra, and an oblation of cake to the Marutah Krîdinah. Then follows the Mahâhavis, consisting--besides the five constant oblations--of oblations to Indra-Agni, Mahendra, and Visvakarman. In the afternoon takes place the Mahâpitriyagña, or (Great) sacrifice to the Manes (performed on a special altar and fire-place, south of the Dakshinâgi); which is succeeded by the Traiyambakahoma, or offering to Rudra Tryambaka, performed on a cross-way somewhere north of the sacrificial ground.

408:2 That is, Agni, the 'sharp-pointed' or 'sharp-edged;' an epithet apparently referring to the pointed flames or tongues of. Agni. The St. Petersburg Dict. takes it to mean 'Agni, possessed of a face.' Perhaps it may mean, 'Agni, constituting the front or van of the army.' In Sat. Br. III, 4, 4, 14, Agni is likened to the point (anîka) of the thunderbolt, Soma to its shaft (sakya), and Vishnu to the part where the point is fixed on the shaft (kulmala). Compare the corresponding passage in Taitt. Br. I, 6, 6: 'The gods and Asuras were contending. Agni spake, "My body is anîkavat (possessed of an army, acc. to Sâyana): satisfy it and you will overcome the Asuras!" The gods prepared a cake on eight potsherds for Agni Anîkavat. Agni Anîkavat, being pleased with his share, produced for himself four anîkas; and thereby the gods prevailed and the Asuras were defeated. . . . Now Agni Anîkavat is yonder sun: his rays are the anîkas.' Here anîka would rather seem to mean either 'dart or 'face.' [In Taitt. Br. I, 6, 2, 5, in the battle between the gods and Asuras, Agni is represented as the mukham of the gods, which Sâyana takes to mean the 'van-guard' or 'the champion' of the gods. Compare also Sat. Br. II, 6, 4, 2; XI, 5, 2, 4]. Acc. to the Black Yagus, the cake to Agni Anîkavat is to be prepared (or offered) simultaneously (sâkam) with the rising of the sun; whence is probably derived the term 'Sâkam-edha.'

409:1 I.e. into a sharp-pointed weapon; or, perhaps, 'after appointing Agni their leader.' Cf. p. 449 note; and Sat. Br. V, 3, 1, I.

410:1 That is, strengthening food. Instead of medhas, the Kânva recension has throughout medham (as once in our text).

410:2 At the preceding offering, that to the Marutah Sântapanâh, the ishti is either to be interrupted at the end of the Samishtayagus (see I, 9, 2, 25-28), or only the offering of the Barhis (I, 9, 2, 29-31) is to be omitted. The concluding ceremonies are to be performed either on the same day, after the offering to the Maruto Grihamedhinah--which itself concludes with the Idâ, and (acc. to Taitt. Br. I, 6, 6, 6) has neither fore-offerings nor after-offerings--or the following morning after the Darvihoma (see par. 17). Katy. V, 6, 3-5, 2-33.

411:1 According to Katy. V, 6, 14, he is to do so either silently, or with the text (Vâg. S. II, 2) used in spreading the sacrificial grass on the altar. See I, 3, 3, 11.

411:2 See I, 3, 3, 13; 3, 4, 1 seq.

412:1 See I, 7, 3, 1 seq.

412:2 See I, 8, 1, 1 seq.

412:3 See I, 7, 4, 6 seq.

412:4 Ned eva prativesam âgyam adhisrayati. There seems to be some mistake here. The commentary on Katy. V, 6, 6 has 'tad eva' instead of 'ned eva.' Sâyana says that the butter is put on the Dakshinâgni; but according to Kâty. V, 6, 24, it is put on the fire together with the pap. The Kânva text has, abhyardha âgyam p. 413 sthâlyâm adhisrayati, 'he puts on the butter in the pot on the near side.'

413:1 In the original this is expressed by repetition of the verb, as was the case in the last sentence but one, where the original construction is retained. The Kânva text has merely, 'Having taken (the pap) with the dish, he hastes up (udâdravati).'

414:1 'Pratyanakti' is probably the same as 'pratyabhighârayati,' generally applied to the basting of the avadâna-sthâna, or that part of the havis from whence the cuttings have been made (Kâty. I, 9, II; the 'replenishing' of the havis in Sat. Br. I, 7, 3, 6 refers to the same thing). See, however, Kâty. V, 6, 22, where it is ruled that no pratyabhighârana is to take place at the present sacrifice. The Kânva MS., on the other hand, reads, 'he does not re-anoint the two cuttings.' Perhaps he is to anoint separately the two cut-off pieces.

415:1 That is, those who have been invested with the sacrificial cord. According to Taitt. Br. I, 6, 7, 1 the mistress of the house is not to eat of it, but an additional (prativesa) pap is to be cooked specially for her on the Dakshina fire.

415:2 'In the morning they tie up the (adopted) calf of a nivânyâ (cow suckling a strange calf),' Kânva text.

415:3 The Darvi-homa, or oblation of a darvi-spoonful of boiled rice to Indra, the associate of the Maruts, may be considered as part of the Grihamedhîyâ ishti, being, as it were, an offering of remains (or scrapings, nishkâsa, Taitt. Br. I, 6, 7, 3); cf. Kâty. V, 6, 33. Like all Guhoti-offerings, the darvi-homa is performed by the Adhvaryu while seated on the north side of the fire. According to Taitt. Br. I, 6, 7, 3, it is to be offered in the Gârhapatya, but according to Katy. V, 6, 38 (comm.) in the Âhavanîya. If the concluding ceremonies of the Sântapanîyâ ishti (from the offering of the Barhis) have not already been performed on the previous night, they have to be performed after the conclusion of the darvi-homa. If, however, only the offering of the Barhis was then omitted, the darvi-homa, if performed before the Agnihotra, is followed immediately by that oblation.

416:1 On the symbolic connection of the seasonal offerings, especially the Sâkamedhâh, with the slaying of Vritra, the evil spirit of drought, see II, 6, 4, 1.

416:2 According to Mahîdhara, this first line is spoken by Indra to his worshipper; the second line containing the latter's reply.

417:1 Comp. Taitt. Br. I, 6, 7, 4: When Indra had slain Vritra (with the thunderbolt) he went to the farthest distances, thinking that he had missed (his aim). He said, 'Who will know this' [viz. whether Vritra is really dead or not, comm.]? The Maruts said, 'We will choose a boon, then we will know (find it out): let the first oblation be prepared for us!' They sported (danced about) on him (Vritra, and thereby found out that he was dead).

417:2 That is to say, the Mahâ-havis, or Great Oblation, though apparently only an integral part of the Sâkamedhâh, is in reality its chief ceremony, and may therefore be considered as being itself on a par with the other seasonal offerings; hence it requires the five oblations common to all the Kâturmâsyas; see II, 5, 1, 8-11. The Black Yagus it seems does not use the term Mahâ-havis, but assigns more importance to the Mahâ-pitriyagña (see II, 6, 1, 1 seq.). See Âpastamba's Paribhâshâs, 80, 81 (M. Müller, Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morg. Ges. IX), according to which the sacrifice to the Manes belongs to the Mahâyagñas.