Pearls from the Upanishads
The Upanishads are treasure houses of ancient Hindu thought of philosophy. They are among the great seminal books of the world. They are also known as Vedanta since they come at the end of their respective Vedas after the Mantra, Brahmana and the Aranyaka portions. They have influenced countless generations of men and have given rise to a vast literature in a hundred different languages.
The etymological meaning of the word upanishad is ‘sitting(sad), close by (upa) with devotion (ni)’. Since the Upanishadic doctrine is not for the masses, it was given to the eligible pupil in seclusion. Hence ‘Upanishad’ came to mean secret doctrine.
The central teaching of the Upanishads may be said to contain in the following verse from the Kathopanishad:
एको वशी सर्वभूतान्तरात्मा एकं रूपं बहुधा यः करोति
तमात्मस्थं ये नु पश्यन्ति धीराः तेषाम् सुखं शाश्वतं नेतराणाम्
Eko vashee sarvabhootaantaraatmaa
Ekam roopam bahudhaa yah karoti
Tamaatmastham yenupashyanti dheeraah
Teshaam sukham shaashwatam netareshaam
“The one Controller, the inner self of all beings who makes his one form manifold; the wise who perceive him as existing within themselves – for them there is eternal happines; not for others.
Here we have in a nutshell the deepest intuition of the Rishis of yore. We have here, by implication, the absoluteness of God, his immanence and transendence and his creative evolution as well as the brotherhood of all created things, their inherent divinity, their blindness, sin and suffering and their final emancipation.
The whole aim of the Upanishads is to show that God, man and nature are bound together in mystic bonds, that the self of man and the self of all other beings in the world are, at bottom, the same as the universal Self. Our highest happiness consists in realising this unity in diversity and acting accordingly. A man who realises this identity not simply as an intellectual proposition or scriptural statement, but as a fact of immediate experience, transcends all limitations, feels perfectly at home everywhere in the universe and thus reaches the highest state.
The goal of man, according to the Upanishadic teaching, is realisation of the self as Brahman, the universal Self. As means thereto are taught an attitude of detachment, the spirit of renunciation, cultivation of cardinal virtues, devotion to the Deity, a passion for enquiry and knowledge of the Absolute. It is this knowledge that removes all sorrow and delusion; for as the Isavasya says, there can be no sorrow and no delusion for one who has seen the unity of the self in all beings.
Among the Indologists and philosophers of the West, Max Muller has this to say about the Upanishads (Vedanta):
“ The Upanishads are the sources of the Vedanta Philosophy, a system in which human speculation seems to me to have reached its very acme…. I spend my happiest hours in reading Vedantic books. They are to me like the light of the morning, like the pure air of the mountains, so simple, so true, if once understood.”
The great German philosopher Schopenhauer says:
“From every sentence (of the Upanishads of Vedanta) deep, original and sublime thoughts arise, and the whole is pervaded by a high and holy and earnest spirit…. In the whole world there is no study so beneficial and so elevating as that of the Upanishads (the Vedanta)…(They) are products of the highest wisdom…It is destined sooner or later to become the faith of the people.”
From the vast ocean of Upanishadic literature, a few pearls are presented here wiith the Sanskrit text in Roman script and a rendering of the meaning in English. It should, however, be understood that the translation in English cannot bring out the full import, connotation, brevity and beauty of the original. An attempt has, however, been made to bring out the broad meaning of the original text for the benefit of those who cannot take advantage of the original text in Sanskrit.
पूर्णमदः पूर्णमिदं पूर्णात् पूर्णमुदच्यते
पूर्णस्य पूर्णमादाय पूर्णमेवावशिष्यते
Poornamadah poornamidam poornaat poornamudachyate
Poornasya Poornamaadaaya Poornamevaavashishyate
On Shantih Shantih Shantih (Shanti paathah)
That ( Brahman) is full; this ( World) is full. The full comes out of the full. Taking the full from the full, the full itself remains. Om, peace, peace, Peace.
ईशावास्यमिदं सर्वं यत्किंच जगत्यां जगत्
तेन त्यक्तेन भुंजीथा: मा गृधः कस्यस्विद्धनम्
Eeshaa vaasyamidam sarvam yatkincha jagatyaam jagat
Tena tyaktena Bhunjeethaa maa gridhah kasyaswiddhanam 
By the Lord is encompassed all this, whatsoever changing there is in this changing (World). Through the renunciation of this (world) mayest thou enjoy; covet not anyone’s riches.
यस्तुसर्वाणि भूतानि आत्मन्येवानुपश्यति
सर्वभूतेषु चात्मानं ततो न विजुगुप्सते
Yastu sarvaani bhootani aatmanyevaanupashyati
Sarvabhooteshu chaatmaanam tato na vijugupsate 
One who perceives all beings in the Self and the Self in all beings will not despise or hate because he sees the same atmatattwa in all beings.
अन्धं तमः प्रविशन्ति ते येऽविद्यामुपासते
ततो भूय इव ते तमो य उ विद्यायां रताः
इति शुश्रुम धीराणां ये नस्तद्व्याचचक्षिरे
विद्याम् चाऽविद्यां च यत्तत्वेदोभयं सह
अविद्यया मृत्युं तीर्त्वा विद्ययाऽमृतमश्नुते
Andham tamah pravishanti ye’vidyaamupaasate
Tato bhooya iva te tamo ya u vidyaayaam rataah
Iti shushruma dheeraanaam ye nastadvyaachachakshire
Vidyaam chaa’vidyaam cha yattat vedobhayam saha
Avidyayaa mrityum teertwaa vidyayaa’mritamashnute [9 – 11]
By vidyaa the reference is to knowledge and by avidyaa the reference is to action (karma). Those who follow only the path of karma end up in the darkness of ignorance (ajnaana). Those who follow only the path of knowledge ( jnaana) seem to end up in greater darkness.
The fruit of vidyaa (knowledge) is different and the fruit of avidyaa ( karma, action) is also different. The great souls who have realised this truth have explained and interpreted this to us.
One who knows vidya (knowledge) and avidyaa (action) simultaneously and understands that each complements the other, conquers mrityu ( that is, the lower nature that causes the downfall of atman) and, by vidya (knowledge) experiences his real nature of amritatwa (eternity, blissfulness).
आग्ने! नय सुपथा राये अस्मान्
विश्वानि देव वयुनानि विद्वान्
भूयिष्ठां ते नम उक्तिं विधेम
Agne ! naya supathaa raaye asmaan
Vishwaani deva vayunaani vidwaan
Bhooyishthaam te nama uktim vidhema 
O Agni! Lead us on to prosperity along the auspicious path, knowing, god, all our deeds! Keep away from us deceitful sin! We shall offer unto thee words of obeisance again and again.
माहं ब्रह्म निराकुर्यां मा मा ब्रह्म निराकरोत्
Maaham brahma niraakuryaam maa maa brahma niraakarot
Aniraakaranamastwaniraakarnamastu (shanti paathah)
May I never discard Brahman! May not Brahman discard me! May there be no discarding ! May there be no discarding !
[Note: This prayer is for the realisation of the unity of the individual self with Universal Self.]
न चेदिहावेदीन्महती विनष्टिः
Na chedihaavedeenmahatee vinashtih [2.5]
If one realises and experiences the truth of the unity of the aatman and the paramata n (individual self and the Universal Self) in this birth itself it is good. If one does not realize this in this birth it is a great loss.
तस्यै तपो दमः कर्मेति प्रतिष्ठा, वेदाः सर्वांगानि, सत्यमायतनम्
Tasyai tapo damah karmeti pratishthaa, vedaah sarvaangaani, satyamaayatanam [4.8]
Penance, restraint, sacrificial rites, these are its (Upanishad’s) support. The Vedas are all its limbs. Truth is its abode.
न वित्तेन तर्पणीयो मनुष्यः
Na vittena tarpaneeyo manushyah [1.1.27]
Man cannot be propitiated with wealth
ते उभे नानार्थे पुरुषं सिनीतः
तयोः श्रेय आदधानस्य साधु भवति
हीयतेऽर्थात् य उ प्रेयो वृणीते
Te ubhe naanaarthe purusham sineetah
Tayoh shreya aadadaanasya saadhu bhavati
Heeyate’rthaat ya u preyo vrineete [1.2.1]
Different is the good, and different, indeed, is the pleasing. These two having different purposes, bind man. It becomes well with him who accepts the good. But he who chooses the pleasing falls away from the purpose.
न जायते म्रियते वा विपश्चि-
न्नायं कुतश्चिन्न बभूव कश्चित्
अजो नित्यः शाश्वतोऽयम् पुराणो
न हन्यते हन्यमाने शरीरे
Na jaayate mriyate vaa vipashchin-
Naayam kutashchinna babhoova kashchit
Ajo nityah shaashwato’yam puraano
Na hanyate hanyamaane shareere [1.2.18]
The knowing self is not born; nor does he die. He sprang from nothing and nothing sprang (from him). He is unborn, eternal, everlasting and ancient. He is not slain when the body is slain.
One who has not abandoned his bad habits, whose mind is not under control, who does not have concentration or whose mind is disturbed cannot realise this atman by mere intellectual reasoning.
तमक्रतुः पश्यति वीतशोको
धातुः प्रसादात् महिमानमात्मनः
Naatmaa’sya jantornihitam guhaayaam
Tamakratuh pashyati veetashoko
Dhatuh prasaadaat mahimaanamaatmanah
Subtler than the subtle, grosser than the gross, the self is concealed in the heart-cave of this creature. He who is free from desire and free from sorrow perceives the glory of the self through the purity of the mind and the senses.
आत्मानं रथिनं विद्धि शरीरं रथमेव तु
बुद्धिं तु सारथिं विद्धि मनः प्रग्रहमेव च
इन्द्रियाणि हयान्याहु: विषयांस्तेषु गोचरान्
यस्त्वविज्ञानवान् भवत्ययुक्तेन मनसा सदा
तस्येन्द्रियाण्यवश्यानि दुष्टाश्वा इव सारथे:
यस्तु विज्ञानवान् भवति युक्तेन मनसा सदा
तस्येन्द्रियाणि वश्यानि सदश्वा इव सारथे:
विज्ञानसारथिर्यस्तु मनप्रग्रहवान् नरः
सोऽध्वन परमाप्नोति तद्विष्णो: परमं पदं
Aatmaanam rathinam viddhi shareeram rathameva tu
Buddhim tu saarathim viddhi manah pragrahameva cha
Indriyaani hayaanyaahurvishayaamsteshu gocharaan
Yastwavijnaanavaan bhavatyayuktena manasaa sadaa
Tasyendriyaanyavashyaani dushtaaswaa iva saaratheh
Yastu vijnaanavaan bhavati yuktena manasaa sadaa
Tasyendriyaani vashyaani sadashwaa iva saaratheh
Vijnaanasaarthiryastu manah pragrahavaan narah
So’dhwanah paramaapnoti tadwishnoh paramam padam [1.3.3,4,5,6,9]
Know the self as the lord of the chariot, the body as the chariot, the intellect as the charioteer and the mind as the reins. The senses are said to be the horses and the sense-objects the spheres for them. Wise men say that (the individual self) as associated with body, the senses and the mind, is the enjoyer. Whoever becomes devoid of knowledge because of mind ever unyoked, for him the senses are uncontrollable, as wild horses are for a charioteer. But whoever becomes endowed with knowledge because of mind ever yoked, for him the senses are controllable, as trained horses are for a charioteer. One who has discriminating intellect as the charioteer and the mind as the reins reaches the end of the path and attains the highest goal of life.
उत्तिष्ठत जाग्रत प्राप्य वरान्निबोधत
क्षुरस्य धारा निशिता दुरत्यया
दुर्गं पथस्तत् कवयो वदन्ति
Uthishthatha jaagrata praapya varaannibodhata
Kshurasya dhaaraa nishitaa duratyayaa
Durgam pathastat kavayo vadanti [1.3.14]
(Those who are immersed in ignorance!) Arise, awake, approach the great souls for enlightenment. The sharp edge of a sword is hard to tread. So also the path to self-knowledge (aatma jnaana), the wise declare, is hard to travel.
पराञ्चि खानि व्यतृणत् स्वयंभू-
स्तस्मात् पराङ्पश्यति नान्तरात्मन्
Paraanchi khaani vytrinat swayambhoo-
stasmaat paraang pashyati naantaraatman
Swaymabhoo (the self-born) Brahma forced the senses outward; hence one sees outward and not the inner self. Some one who is wise, desiring immortality, sees the inner self, by turning the eyes inward.
पराञ्च: कामाननुयन्ति बाला-
स्ते मृत्योर्यान्तिविततस्य पाशम्
अथ धीराः अमृतत्वं विदित्वा
ध्रुवमध्रुवेष्विह न प्रार्थयन्ते
Paraanchah kaamaananuyanti baalaa-
ste mrityoryanti vitatasya paasham
Atha dheeraah amritatwam viditwaa
Dhruvamadhruveshwiha na praarthayante [2.1.2]
The immature pursue outward pleasures; they are caught in the far-flung snare of death. But the wise, knowing immortality to be permanent, do not pray for anything here amidst what are transitory.
अग्निर्यथैको भुवनं प्रविष्टो
रूपं रूपं प्रतिरूपो बभूव
रूपं रूपं प्रतिरूपो बहिश्च
Agniryathaiko bhuvanam pravishto
Roopam roopam pratiroopo babhoova
Roopam roopam pratiroopo bahishcha
As Agni (Fire), which is one, entering this world becomes varied in form according to the respective forms (of objects it burns), so also the one inner self of all beings becomes varied in form according to the respective forms of beings it inhabits and also (exists) outside.
सूर्यो यथा सर्वलोकस्य चक्षु:
न लिप्यते चाक्षुषैर्बाह्यदोषै:
न लिप्यते लोकदुखेन बाह्य:
Sooryo yathaa sarvalokasyachakshu-
rna lipyate chaakshushairbaahyadoshaih
Na lipyate lokadukhena baahyah
As the sun who is the eye of all beings is not stained by the external defects pertaining to the eyes, so also the inner self of all beings is not stained by the misery of beings (though) external.
द्वा सुपर्णौ सयुजौ सखयौ
समानं वृक्षं परिषस्वजाते
तयोरन्यः पिप्पलं स्वाद्यत्ति
Dwaa suparna sayujaa sakhaayaa
samaanam vriksham parishaswajaate
Tayoranyah pippalam swaadyathi
Two birds, ever united companions, cling to the self-same tree. Of these two, one eats the sweet berry (is immersed in the joys and and sorrows of this world) . The other one looks on without eating (He remains as the witness only ).
समाने वृक्षे पुरुषो निमग्नो ऽनीशया शोचतिमुह्यमानः
जुष्टं यदा पश्यत्यन्यमीशमस्य महिमानमिति वीतशोकः
Samaane vrikshe purusho nimagno-
‘neeshayaa shochati muhyamaanah
Jushtam yadaa pashyatyanyameesha-
masya mahimaanamiti veetashokah
On the self-same tree, a person immersed ( in the sorrows of the world) is deluded and grieves on account of his want of strength. But he becomes free from sorrow, when he sees the other who is worshipped (by many) and who is the Lord, and also his greatness.
सत्येन लभ्यस्तपसा ह्येष आत्मा
सम्यग्ज्ञानेन ब्रह्मचर्येण नित्यम्
अन्त: शरीरे ज्योतिर्मयो हि शुभ्रो
यम् पश्यन्ति यतयः क्षीणदोषा:
Satyena labhyastapasaa hyesha aatmaa
Samyagjnaanena brahmacharyena nityam
Antah shareere jyotirmayo hi shubhro
Yam pashyanti ytayah ksheenadoshaah [3.1.5]
This Atman, luminous and pure, whom the blemishless yogis perceive inside this body can be attained only by Truth, tapas (endurance of suffering), true knowledge and brahmacharya.
सत्यमेव जयते नाऽनृतम्
सत्येन पन्था विततो देवयानः
येनाक्रमन्ति ऋषयो ह्याप्तकामा
यत्र तत्सत्यस्यपरं निधानम्
Satyameva jayate naanritam
Satyena panthaa vitato devayaanah
Yatra tatsatyasyaparam nidhaanam [3.3.6]
Truth alone reigns supreme not untruth. By truth is laid out the road (known as) the path of the gods, by which the sages, who have their desires (fully) realised, proceed to where that supreme seat of truth is.
यम् यम् लोकं मनसा संविभाति
विशुद्धसत्व: कामयते यांश्च कामान्
तम् तम् लोकं जायते तांश्च कामां-
Yam yam lokam manasaa samvibhaati
Vishuddhasatwah kaamayate yaamshcha kaamaan
Tam tam lokam jayate taamshcha kaamaam-
stasmaadaatmajnam hyarchayedbhootikaamah [3.1.10]
Whatever world a man of purified nature thinks of in his mind and whatever desires he desires, all those worlds and all those desires he attains. Therefore he who desires prosperity should worship the knower of the self. `
नायमात्मा बलहीनेन लभ्यः
न च प्रमादात्तपसो वाप्यलिंगात्
एतैरुपायैर्यतते यस्तु विद्वां
स्तस्यैष आत्मा विशते ब्रह्म धाम
Naayamaatmaa balaheenena labhyo
Na cha pramaadaattapaso vaapyalingaat
Etairupaayairyatate yastu vidwaam-
stasyaisha aatmaa vishate brahama dhaama
This self is not to be attained by one who is devoid of strength, nor through delusion nor even by penance without an aim. But the wise man who makes the attempt with these means – this self of his enters the Brahman- abode.
ते ब्रह्मलोकेषु परान्तकाले
परामृता: परिमुच्यन्ति सर्वे
Te brahmalokeshu paraantakaale
Paraamritaah parimuchyanti sarve
The ascetics who have ascertained well the import of the Vedanta-knowledge and who have purified their natures through the path of renunciation – all of them, the supreme immortals, are liberated at the end of time in the worlds of Brahman.
वेदमनूच्याचार्योऽन्तेवासिनमनुशास्ति। सत्यं वद । धर्मं चर। स्वाध्यायान्मा प्रमद:।
आचार्याय प्रियंधनमाहृत्य प्रजातन्तुं मा व्यवच्छेत्सी:॥
Vedamanoochyaachaaryo’ntevaasinamanushaasti | satyam vada| dharmam chara | swaadhyaanmaa pramadah | Achaaryaaya priyam dhanamaahritya prajaatantum maa vyavachchhetseeh ||
After expounding the Vedas, the teacher enjoins the disciple thus: Speak the truth. Practice virtue. Do not neglect the Veda that has been studied. Having brought to the teacher the wealth that is pleasing to him, do not cut off the line of progeny.
सत्यान्न प्रमदितव्यम् । धर्मान्न प्रमदितव्यम्।कुशलान्न प्रमदितव्यम् । भूत्यै न प्रमदितव्यम्। स्वाध्यायप्रवचनाभ्यां न प्रमदितव्यम् ॥
Satyaanna pramaditavyam | dharmaanna pramaditavyam | kushalaannapramaditavyam | bhootyai na pramaditavyam |
Swaadhyaayapravachanaabhyaam na pramaditavyam ||
Let there be no neglect of truth. Let there be no neglect of virtue. Let there be no neglect of welfare. Let there be no neglect of prosperity. Let there be no neglect of the Veda that has been studied and its teaching.
देवपितृकार्याभ्यां न प्रमदितव्यम् । मातृदेवो भव । पितृदेवो भव। आचार्यदेवो भव। अतिथिदेवो भव॥
Deva pitrikaaryaabhyaam na pramaditavyam | Matrudevo bhava | pitrudevo bhava | Aachaaryadevo bhava |
Atithidevo bhava | |
Let there be no neglect of what is due to gods and to departed forefathers. Be one to whom mother is a god; be one to whom father is a god; be one to whom teacher is a god; be one to whom guest is a god.
यान्यनवद्यानि कर्माणि तानि सेवितव्यानि । नो इतराणि । यान्यस्माकं सुचरितानि तानि त्वयोपास्यानि नो इतराणि ॥
Yaanyanavadyaani karmaani taani sevitavyaani| No itaraani | yaanyasmaakam sucharitaani taanitwayopaasyaani | No itaraani||
Whatever deeds are blameless, be devoted to them; to no others. Whatever good customs there are among us, they have to be adopted by you, no others.
ये के चास्मच्छ्रेयांसो ब्राह्मणा तेषां त्वयासनेन प्रश्वसितव्यम् । श्रद्धया देयम् ।।अश्रद्धयाऽदेयम् । श्रिया देयम्। ह्रिया देयम्।
भिया देयम् । संविदा देयम्।
Ye ke chaasmachchhreyaamso braahmanaa teshaam twayaasanena prashwasitavyam | shraddhayaa deyam | ashraddhayaa’deyam | shriyaa deyam | hriyaa deyam | bhiyaa devyam | samvidaa deyam ||
Whatever Braahmanas there may be who are superior to us, they should be comforted by you by giving them a seat. Gifts should be given with faith; should not be given without faith; should be given in plenty; should be given with modesty; should be given with fear; should be given with sympathy
अथ यदि ते कर्मविचिकित्सा वा वृत्तविचिकित्सा वा स्यात् ये तत्र ब्राह्मणा: सम्मर्शिनो युक्ता आयुक्ता अलूक्षा धर्मकामा स्युर्यथा ते तत्र वर्तेरन् तथा तत्र वर्तेथा:
Atha yadi te karmavichikitsaa vaa vritta vichikitsaa vaa syat ye tatra braahmanaah sammarshino yuktaa aayuktaa alookshaa dharmakaamaa syuryathaa te tatra varteran tathaa tatra vartethaah
Then, if there is in you any doubt regarding rites and any doubt regarding conduct, you should conduct yourself in those cases in such a way in which those Brahmanas who may be living there, who are competent to judge, dedicated (to good deeds), not led by others, not cruel and are lovers of virtue, conduct themselves in these cases.
अथाभ्याख्यातेषु ये तत्र ब्राह्मणा: सम्मर्शिनो युक्ता आयुक्ता अलूक्षा धर्मकामा स्युर्यथा ते तत्र वर्तेरन् तथा तत्र वर्तेथा:
Athaabhyaakhyaateshu ye tatra braahmanaah sammarshino yuktaa aayuktaa alookshaa dharmakaamaa syuryathaa te tatra varteran tathaa tatra vartethaah
Then in respect of persons who are accused of (sin), you should conduct yourself in such a way in which those Brahmanas who may be living there, who are competent to judge, dedicated (to good deeds), not led by others, not cruel and are lovers of virtue, conduct themselves in respect of such persons.
एश आदेश: । एष उपदेश: । एषा वेदोपनिशद् । एतदनुशासनम्। एवमुपास्तव्यम् । एवमुचैतदुपास्यम्
Esha aadeshah | Esah upadeshah | Eshaa Vedopanishad | Etadanushaasanam | Evamupaasitavyam |
This is the command . This is the teaching. This is the secret meaning of the Vedas. This is the instruction. Thus should one worship. Thus indeed should one worship this.
रसो वै सः। रसम् ह्येवायं लब्ध्वाऽऽनन्दी भवति । को ह्येवान्यात् कः प्राण्यात् ? यदेष आकाश आनन्दो न स्यात् एष ह्येवानन्दयति ॥
Raso vai sah | rasam hyevaayam labdhwaanandee bhavati| ko hyevaanyaat kah praanyaat? Yadesha aakaasha aanando na syaat Esha hyewanandayati [2.7]
Brahman is of the nature of infinite bliss. All beings experience joy from an infinitesimal part of this bliss of Brahman. Without this bliss of brahman pervading all of space, how can anyone find joy in living involving such acts as breathing, eating and excreting. It is the same Ultimate Reality which is the source of joy for every living being
आनन्दं ब्रह्मणो विद्वान् न बिभेति कश्चन
Aanandam brahmano vidwaan na bibheti kushchana [2.9]
He who has experienced the bliss of Brahman will never again fear from anthing.
य़तो वा इमानि भूतानि जायन्ते । येन जातानि जीवन्ति । यत् प्रयन्त्यभिसंविशन्ति। तद्विजिज्ञासस्व तद्ब्रह्म – इति ॥
Yato vaa imaani bhootaani jaayante yena jaataani jeevanti yat prayantyabhisamvishanti tadvijijnaasaswa| Tadbrahma – iti ||
That, verily, from which these beings are born, that by which the beings live, that into which, when departing, they enter, seek to know that. That is Brahman.
त्रयो धर्मस्कन्धा: – यज्ञोऽध्ययनम् दानमिति प्रथम:, तप एव द्वितीयः, ब्रह्मचार्याचार्यकुलवासी त्रितीयोऽत्यन्तमात्मानमाचार्यकुलेऽवसादयन् ॥
Trayo dharma skandhaah – yajno’dhyayanam daanamiti prathamah, tapa eva dwiteeyah, brahmachaaryaachaaryakulavaasee triteeyo’tyantamaatmaanamaachaaryakule’vasaadayan [2.23.1]
There are three supports for dharma. The first is sacrifices, study of vedas and gifting. The second is tapas . The third is brahmachari living in the gurukula physically exhausting himself in the service of the guru and gurukula.
यो वै भूमा तत्सुखम् नाल्पे सुखमस्ति
Yo vai bhoomaa tatsukham
भूमैव सुखम् । भूमा त्वेव विजिज्ञासितव्यः
Bhoomaiva sukham | bhoomaa tweva vijijnaasitavyah[7.2.1]
What is great is bliss. There is no bliss in the small. The great itself is bliss. The great itself is what is to be desired to be known.
यो वै भूमा तदमृतं । अथ यदल्पं तन्मर्त्यं
Yo vai bhoomaa tadamritam | Atha yadalpam tanmartyam [7.24.1]
What is great is immortal. Then, what is small that is transient.
आहारशुद्धौ सत्त्वशुद्धि: सत्त्वशुद्धौ ध्रुवा स्मृतिः स्मृतिलाभे सर्वग्रन्थीनां विप्रमोक्षः
Aaahaara shuddhau sattwashuddhih | Sattava suddhau dhruvaa smritih |
Smritilaabhe sarvagrantheenaam vipramokshah
When the food taken is pure, the inner mind of the person becomes pure. When the mind is pure, the memory is stable. With the help of this stable memory all the internal knots are untied.
असतो मा सद्गमय तमसो मा ज्योतिर्गमय मृत्योर्माऽमृतम् गमय
Asato maa sad gamaya
Tamaso maa jyotirgamaya
From the unreal lead me to the real. From darkness lead me to light. From death lead me to immortality.
अमृतत्त्वस्य नाशास्ति वित्तेनेति
Amritattwasya naashaasti vitteneti
There is no hope of attaining immortality through vitta (wealth, material means)
न वा अरे पत्युः कामाय पति: प्रियो भवति
आत्मनस्तु कामाय पति: प्रियो भवति
न वा अरे सर्वस्यकामाय सर्वं प्रियं भवति
आत्मनस्तु कामाय सर्वं प्रियं भवति
आत्मा वा अरे द्रष्टव्य: श्रोतव्यो मन्तव्यो निदिध्यासितव्यो मैत्रेयि
आत्मनो वा दर्शनेन श्रवणेन मत्या विज्ञानेनेदं सर्वं विदितम्
Na vaa are patyuh kamaaya patih priyo bhavati
Aatmanastu kaamaaya patih priyo bhavati
Na vaa are sarvasyakaamaaya sarvam priyam bhavati|
Aatmanastu kaamaaya sarvam priyam bhavati
Aatmaa vaa are drashtavyah shrotavyo mantavyo nididhyaasitavyo maitreyi !|
Aatmano vaa are darshanena shravanena matyaa vijnaanenedam sarvam viditam ||
Not indeed for the love of a husband is the husband dear. But, for the love of the self is the husband dear.
Not indeed for the love of all is all dear. But, for the love of the self is all dear.
It is, indeed, the self that is to be seen, that is to be heard of, that is to be thought about, that is to be meditated on. Lo, Maitreyi, indeed by the sight of the self, by its being heard of, by its being thought about, by its being known, all this becomes known.
यदा चर्मवदाकाशं वेष्टयिष्यन्ति मानवाः
तदा देवमविज्ञाय दुखस्यान्तो भविष्यति
Yadaa charmavadaakaasham veshtayishyanti maanavaah
Tadaa devamavijnaaya dukhasyaanto bhavishyati
When men can wrap the sky (space) around themselves as a piece of skin then, without knowing the one God, there will be end of all sorrow (meaning there can be no end of sorrow without knowing the one God).
एको देवः सर्वभूतेषु गूढ:
साक्षी चेता केवलो निर्गुणश्च
Eko devah sarvabhooteshu gooDhah
Sakshee chetaa kevalo nirgunashcha
He is the one God, hidden in all beings, pervading all, the inner self of all, the perceiver of all deeds, the presider of all beings, the witness, the knower, the sole one, and devoid of qualities.
यो ब्रह्माणं विदधाति पूर्वम्
यो वै वेदांश्च प्रहिणोति तस्मै
तं ह देवमात्मबुद्धिप्रकाशं
मुमुक्षुर्वै शरणमहं प्रपद्यॆ
Yo brahmaanam vidadhaati poorvam
Yo vai vedaamshcha prahinoti tasmai
Tam ha devamaatmabuddhiprakaasham
Mumukshurvai sharanamaham prapadye
He who of old created Brahma, and who verily imparted the Vedas to him, that God who manifests in his own intellect, I, in my eargerness for release, approach as a refuge.
शुभाशुभाभ्यां मार्गाभ्यां वहन्ती वासनासरित्
पौरुषेण प्रयत्नेन योजनीया शुभे पथि
हस्तं हस्तेन संपीड्य दन्तैर्दन्तान् विचूर्णयन्
अंगान्यंगैः समाक्रम्य जयेदादौ स्वकं मनः
Shubhaashubhaabhyaam maargaabhyaam vahantee vaasanaa sarit
Paurushena prayatnena yojaneeyaa shubhe pathi
Hastam hastena sampeedya dantairdantaan vichoornayan
Angaanyangai samaakramya jayedaadau swakam manah
The innate tendencies of man accumulated in countless births flows in two channels. The first one yields good and happiness and the other one yields evil and sorrow. By a herculean effort one should divert the vasanas into the first channel which leads one to the ultimate goal of life.
Firmly locking together one’s both hands, grinding one’s teeth together and pitting the limbs of the body against one another (meaning using a herculean effort) one should conquner one’s mind as the first thing ( for further advancement in the spiritual path).