Badarayana, after delivering his discourses on the Upanishads, tells his assembly comprising both his students and his critics that he is embarking on a scrutiny of the constitution, Brahma. (athato brahma jijnasa 1-1-1) The transliteration by Thibaut of this statement as Then therefore the enquiry into Brahman and his elaborate explanation do not carry conviction.
Thibaut's translation of the next formula (1-1-2) as (Brahman is that) from which the origin etc. (i.e. the origin, subsistence and dissolution) of this (world proceeds) is not rational.
Badarayana says that he proposes to examine the course of the birth or emergence and development of the social world according to the stand adopted by this constitution. The assumption that it deals with the three functions, creation, maintenance and destruction, which are supposed to be performed by God the Almighty, is not warranted. (janmadi asya yata 1-1-2)
Brahma-sutra is a discipline that presents in pithy statements the principles behind the aspects of the socio-political constitution elaborated in the different Upanishads, which are considered to be annexure to the Vedas proper. Vedas, referred to as Srutis, were chronicles of past events heard and transmitted orally. The terms, sound (sabda) and utterance (vak) too, referred to these Srutis or Vedas.
Following the annotators of the medieval times, Thibaut encouraged by Max Muller interprets the second formula as implying that as Brahma is the source of the Scripture it may be concluded that Brahma is omniscient. But that Brahman is to be known from scripture because it is connected with the Vedanta texts as their purport.
The teacher tells his students that the code, that is, Dharmasastra has its origin (yoni) in the constitution that is explained in the Upanishads. But there is a correlation between this Upanishadic constitution and the contents of the superior and basic and also more ancient Brahma or social constitution. The term, Brahma, referred to Vedas in general and Atharvaveda in particular.
The scholars who outlined the Upanishads, which have come to be treated as Vedanta, the concluding sections of the Vedas, did not hold that the Upanishads were superior to or set aside any section or passage of the Vedas.
While the socio-political constitutions of the Vedic times were incorporated in Atharvaveda, the socio-cultural constitution was to be traced from the contents of the other three Vedas, Rg, Yajur and Sama. The code, Dharmasastra is an offshoot of that more authoritative constitution of the Vedic times and cannot claim validity for any provision that is at variance with the original Vedic constitution, the teacher implies.
To be precise, the principles of the socio-cultural code, Dharmasastra, that were recognized by the State were inspired by these three Vedas and the provisions of the politico-economic code, Arthasastra that guided the State were based on Atharvaveda.
Badarayana demanded that the editors of Dharmasastra and Arthasastra should be on the alert against departing from the conventions hallowed by the Vedas. (Sastra yonitvat tat tu samanvayat 1-1-3,4)
Thibaut translates them as (The omniscience of Brahman follows) from its being the source of scripture and But that (Brahma is to be known from Scripture) because it is connected (with the Vedanta-texts) as their purport. We would prefer not to embark at this stage on a criticism of his elaborate discussion on this theme.
Max Muller interprets the next formula (iksha tena asabdam 1-1-5) as: On account of seeing (i.e. thinking being attributed in the Upanishads to the cause of the world; the pradhana) is not (to be identified with the cause indicated by the Upanishads; for) it is not founded on Scripture. We would refrain from using the term, pradhana, and indulging in an enquiry into what is the cause of what.
Badarayana explains that it is of course not explicitly stated that the new code, sastra, is based on the earlier constitution, Brahmam, for it was not felt necessary to state so as it was obvious and every one could see the correlation even without being directed to notice it. He was defending his statement against the objections raised by his critics.
The teacher puts forth the argument that the recent code, Dharmasastra, is correlated to the earlier constitution, Brahma, and is not a heretical one, as in both, the concept, atma, features.
In other words the new code, Dharmasastra, a product of the Upanishadic constitution, like the earlier constitution, Brahma, has not denied the individual his right to choose, determine and pursue the way of life that he deems to be the best for him. The original constitution of the Vedic times was based on the principles of Rta, that is, on laws of nature, svabhava. The individual pursued a course of life that accorded with his aptitude. Dharmasastra did not reject Rta, according to Badarayana.
[The interpretation that the teacher was only denying that he was using the term, seeing only in a figurative sense does not carry conviction. The concept of atma or Self as being the cause of the world is not relevant in this context.] (gaunascen na atma sabdat 1-1-6) Thibaut translates this formula as If it is said that (the word seeing) has a figurative meaning, we deny that on account of the word, Self (being applied to the cause of the world).
Thibaut translates the next formula (1-1-7) as (The pradhana cannot be designated by the term, Self) because release is taught of him who takes his stand on that (the Sat).
The teacher rejects the argument that the new code does not dwell on the concept of the free individual, atma. Like the earlier Vedic constitution, Brahma, it too describes how the individual can function independent of control by the social bodies.
The detractors argued that the new code (sastra) prescribed too many rules that prevented the individual from functioning apart from the social group in which he found himself. The word Brahma referred to the final stage that can be arrived at by an individual, atma, especially, an intellectual seeking fulfilment and freedom and becoming free (moksha) from the influence of his social group and being not bound by any duty to his specific social group. (tannishtasya moksha upadesat 1-1-7)
Thibaut translates the next formula (1-1-8) as And (the pradhana cannot be denoted by the word Self) because there is no statement of its having to be set aside.
The teacher tells the detractor that there is no statement in the new code that the concept of the liberated individual, atma, has been set aside or given up. Hence it needs to be agreed that the new constitution, Brahma, of which Dharmasastra is an offshoot, though it has not specifically promised freedom of the individual from all social bonds and has specifically permitted him to pursue personal interests rather than only those of his groups, continues to grant all the freedoms permitted by the original Vedic constitution, Brahma.
These freedoms included the right not to be associated with or bound to any social body and to pursue the attainment of the highest bliss and salvation. Such pursuit was possible for most persons only in an atmospIhere of solitude.It may be noted here that rationalism requires that the Vedas and the Upanishads are not presumed as having advocated spiritualism, that is, development of the human soul, jivatma, to its highest abilities and its attaining the status of the highest, that is, divine soul, paramatma, to the exclusion of issues pertaining to mans social life.
Badarayana was required to explain why Dharmasastra dealt mainly with dharma and artha, performance of social duties and pursuit of wealth and not with the steps to be followed for attaining salvation, moksha. Was he interested only in the man who was a part of the society and his worldly life and not in the man who lived away from his social group seeking final salvation, that is, release from the cycle of births and deaths? (heyatva ava ca anatcca 1-1-8)
Thibault translates the next formula (1-1-9) as On account of (the individual Soul) going to the Self (the Self cannot be the pradhana).
The teacher argues that his claim that the new code, Brahma, does not depart from the concept of an individual free from social bonds as it refers to and promises the right of the individual to rise to the level of the self-governing noble (sva). Such rise is possible only when a commoner is not totally subject to the diktats of his social group, clan or community, and is free to pursue the way of life close to his heart.
The noble, sva, could not be hauled up by the rest of the society or even by his peers. When the concept of svadharma is brought into focus and the individual is permitted to choose and pursue the vocation and practise ways of life pleasing to him rather than pleasing to others and the scheme of svadharma is instituted by the new code it is implied that he is a free individual, atma, and has been liberated from all bonds. (svapyayat 1-1-9) Every individual can regulate and govern his conduct on his own.
Thibaut reads the formula (1-1-10) as On account of the uniformity of view (of the Vedanta texts, Brahman is to be considered the cause).
The teacher says that his stand that the new code, Brahma, does not depart from the provisions of the earlier constitution which kept open the channels of social ascent to all individuals is valid as the movement for the liberation of the individual (atma) from social bonds had already begun and its momentum (gati) could not be held back.
Dharmasastra based on the Upanishada constitution, Brahma, far from imposing new restrictions on the individual allows him to choose any vocation and practise any way of life. This is a sign of the rights and privileges of the ruling elite (devas) flowing down rapidly to mould the lives of the commoners (manushyas) and enable every commoner to determine his own present and future.
The servants (dasas) who were subordinate to the nobles (svas) were the first to be freed and enabled to be free citizens (aryas). The commoners (manushyas) were the next to be freed from the bonds to their respective clans (kulas) and communities (jatis) and allowed to be equal to and as free as the nobles (svas).
The Brahma constitution distinguished between devas and manushyas who belonged to the two distinct social worlds, sva and bhu, of the core society. The former had personal lands while the latter worked on the common lands or on the personal lands of the nobles.
The new code, Dharmasastra based on the principles of the revised constitution, Brahma, upheld in the Upanishads, treated every one as a free individual. It freed all from subordination to their respective groups or to any other group.
It recognized that men were born free to whichever social rank the parents to whom they were born might have belonged when they were born. In other words, social bonds became operative only after an individual had acknowledged them consciously during the course of his education. It was the concept of dvija, one who is born twice, which validated social duties.
One who did not have the privilege of going through the process of education that entitled him to become a dvija was not free to opt for specific duties and the corresponding rights and often found himself under duress and perform deeds as a dasa, which cannot be termed as performance of duties. He could not but do those works.
This liberation movement was gaining momentum it could be seen, according to Badarayana. There was uniformity in the two approaches, the early Vedic and the neo-Vedic, with respect to this aspect, the former tuned to the principles of Rta and the latter upholding Dharma. (gati samanyat B.S. 1-1-10)
Thibaut reads the formula (1-1-11) as And because it is directly stated in Scripture (therefore the all-knowing Brahman is the cause of the world). According to the interpretation advanced by the annotators of the medieval times and followed by Max Muller and others, the teacher, Badarayana asserted that the scripture, Vedas, has explicitly stated that the all-knowing Brahman is the cause of the world and hence all codes should adopt this position. They have failed to note the real import of the claim put forth by Badarayana in that assembly.
The teacher asserts that it has been said in the Vedas that everyone must be free to rise to the highest level of his own choice and be free to determine his own career, objectives, goals and ways to attain those goals. The Vedas on which the new constitution, Brahma and code of Dharma are based do not impose any limit and such freedom to develop ones own personality is promised to all individuals.
Hence it is wrong to claim that the new code has prescribed limits to ones freedom or that it has given freedoms not granted by the earlier Vedic constitution. (srtatvat ca 1-1-11). Badarayana asserted that he had not, while outlining the rules to be followed by the composers of Vedanta, departed from the stand taken by the sages who had composed the Vedas.
Thibaut translates the formula (1-1-12) as (The Self) consisting of bliss (is the highest Self) on account of the repetition (of the word bliss as denoting the highest Self).
During this discussion with his students and critics, the teacher draws attention to the use of the term, ananda, the happiness emanating from the enjoyment of privileges and immunities of a particular status. All commoners, manushyas, all free men (gandharvas), all nobles (devas) and all officials of the state like, Indra, Brhaspati and Prajapati, have been promised freedom to pursue their respective ways of life and careers and enjoy the rights and privileges commensurate with the roles performed in those stations.
Manushyas, gandharvas and devas, constituted the three classes, lower, middle and upper of the Vedic times. Indra-Brhaspati agreement arrived at during the Vedic times, on behalf of the nobles (devas) and the commoners (manushyas) by the two officials, Indra and Brhaspati, ensured the nobles did not trample on the rights of the commoners. This Vedic polity had the Prajapati as the guardian of the rights of all citizens (prajas) whether they were born in the territory or had been newly admitted as domiciles.
It needs to be recognized that the new code, Brahma, guarantees the status of a free, satisfied and happy individual to all as envisaged in the Vedic constitution. All can be and are free and happy but cannot be equally free and equally happy irrespective of his duties and statuses. The concept of the privileges and immunities, ananda or bliss, of the different social strata and of different levels of socio-political authority is elucidated while discussing the contents of the Taittiriya Upanishad. (anandamaya ubhyasat B.S.1-1-12)
It would appear that the teacher of Taittiriya Upanishad had accepted the approach insisted on by Badarayana rather than the modifications that Yajnavalkya had recommended.
Thibaut reads the formula (1-1-13) as If (it be objected that the term anandamaya, consisting of bliss can) not (denote the highest Self) on account of its being a word denoting a modification (or product) (we declare the objection to be) not (valid) on account of abundance (the idea of which may be expressed by the affix maya).
The detractors pointed out that all did not have the same rights and powers, privileges and immunities when every one whether a noble or a commoner was promised happiness. The term, vikara, indicates distortion and lack of uniformity and hence a faulty social constitution full of inequality and inequity.
The prosperous social welfare state did not treat all as recipients of equal benefits, they claimed. But the teacher, while conceding that the new code did indeed not create a society of equals and did have diverse social and political ranks, argues that it has to be accepted that it is a prosperous state and spreads happiness over a very wide area as a social welfare state.
It was not so when only a few at the top were happy and the many at the bottom worked for the happiness of this few. The teacher draws attention to the spread of happiness in all ranks and sectors of the society. The concept of the freedom of the individual to determine his course of life has led to widespread satisfaction and happiness. (vikara sabdan na iti canna pracuryat 1-1-13) This does not require the formation of a classless society, Badarayana implies.
Thibaut trnslates the formula (1-1-14) as And because he is declared to be the cause of it, (i.e. of bliss; therefore maya is to be taken as denoting abundance). According to the later annotators, Badarayana was defending his argument that the happiness (ananda) of all was because of Brahma and that the term, maya, is to be taken as implying abundance.
The concept, Brahma, would be relevant here only if is recognized that this term refers to the constitution rather than to the highest power, the Absolute. The teacher explains that it has been repeatedly stated by him that the new code promises happiness, ananda, to every sector, stratum and rank. This promise is not to be ignored. No stratum or rank has been left out. The new code has a definite objective, happiness of all. (tat hetu vyapadesat 1-1-14) But it does not mean that all are equal.
Thibaut translates the next formula (1-1-15) as Moreover (the anandamaya is Brahman because) the same (Brahman) which had been referred to in the mantra is sung, (i.e. proclaimed in the Brahmana passage as the anandamaya). The annotator says that according to Badarayana the anandamaya (promised) is Brahman because the same Brahman, which had been referred to in the mantra, is sung, (i.e. proclaimed in the Brahmana passage as the anandamaya).
The teacher points out that what is thus described as the common feature between the earlier constitution, Brahma, and the new code, sastra, is incorporated in the counsel now given by the teacher to the graduates. It is also incorporated in the Gita. This pertains to the assurance that all individuals at whatever social level they are or whatever political role they play could be happy. Thus the teacher rejects the suggestion that there is a divergence between the contents of the convocation address in the Taittiriya Upanishad and the Bhagavad-Gita. (mantra varnikameva ca giyate 1-1-15)
Thibaut translates the next formula (1-1-16) as (The Self consisting of bliss is the highest Self) not the other (i.e. the individual Soul), on account of the impossibility (of the latter assumption). The commentator interprets the next epigram as implying that the Self, consisting of bliss, anandamaya brahma is the highest Soul, paramatma.
The teacher points out that it is not logically possible to arrive at any other conclusion than the above, namely, it is possible for every one to attain the highest happiness as specified in the socio-political constitution, Brahma, in proportion to the importance of his socio-economic deeds or his socio-political roles. This is the concept of social welfare and freedom from social bondage. (na itara anupapatte 1-1-16)
The commentator interprets the next epigram (1-1-17) as: And on account of the declaration of the difference (of the two, the anandamaya cannot be the transmigrating soul). The teacher however takes into account the existence of intrinsic contradiction between the position prevalent in the earlier polity that underlined domination over the many (manushyas) by a few (devas) and the position in the new polity that has a vast middle class of free men (gandharvas) and a small class of privileged rulers (devas) enjoying enormous amount of happiness and their equally small group of subordinates (manushyas) who enjoyed but little happiness. (bheda vyapadesat ca 1-1-17)
This change and development in the structure of the society, which took place between the early Vedic times and the last stage of the Vedic era marked by Vedanta, is not to be ignored.
Thibaut reads the epigram (1-1-18) as And on account of desire (being mentioned as belonging to the anandamaya) no regard is to be had to what is inferred (i.e. to the pradhana inferred by the Samkhyas). The teacher holds that it is not correct to infer that real equality is not to be expected in the new social polity as the desires of men are not all identical. He implies that man strives towards what he desires. As desires are not identical the fruits attained cannot be identical. Social classes and inequality will be present but still all can be happy. (kamat ca na anumana apeksha 1-1-18) Both the commentators of the medieval times and their modern adherents have overlooked this note.
The commentator interprets the next epigram (1-1-19) as implying: And, moreover, it (i.e. Scripture) teaches the joining of this (i.e. the individual soul) with that (i.e. the Self consisting of bliss), on that (being fully known). It needs to be pointed out that Badarayana was not dealing with the concept of the union between human soul (jivatma) and the great soul (paramatma).
The annotators belonging to the medieval times and the ones of the modern times who have followed them have tended to presume that Badarayana was dealing with issues pertaining to the relationship between the human soul and the divine soul. They have presumed so, as they had not grasped the features of the social polity of the Vedic times and had not tried to study the Vedas and Vedanta from the angle of the issues pertaining to social relations.
The teacher says that the law has ordained that there is an intrinsic relation between what is desired and how it is strived for. This exercise is covered by the science known as yoga. In other words it is incorrect to posit that one would enjoy his share of the benefits and privileges mentioned in the schemata for the different social strata and social ranks irrespective of his seeking it or striving for it. (asminnasya ca tat yogam sasti 1-1-19)
The interpretation of the formulae (1-1-20 and 21) as, The one within (the sun and the eye) (is the highest Lord), on account of his qualities being declared. And there is another one (i.e. the Lord who is different from the individual souls animating the sun etc.), on account of the declaration of distinction, is unconvincing. Badarayana draws attention to what has been said while counselling the trainee on the provisions of dharmasastra.
It has drawn attention to that individual who is within the body of the core society and the rights, privileges, immunities and happiness accruing to him from performing the duties prescribed for his social stratum and for the position he is occupying in the polity.
This distinction flowed into the new social order outlined by the dharmasastra, that is, into the scheme of four classes, Brahmans, Kshatriyas, Vaisyas and Shudras, though it was meant originally for the scheme of Devas, Pitaras, Gandharvas and Manushyas (nobles, elders, free persons and commoners) as explained by the teacher in his convocation address (vide Taittiriya Upanishad) while expounding the concept of the highest bliss, Brahmananda. (antat tat dharma upadesat 1-1-20, 21))
Thibaut translates the formula (1-1-22) as The akasa, i.e ether (is Brahman) on account of characteristic marks (of the latter being mentioned). The students wanted to know whether the same principle of stratification applied to the open space (akasa), which did not have organized social groups as in the core society. [It is not rational to interpret the term akasa as ether.]
The teacher answers that both men and women are assured freedom to enjoy the rights, privileges, powers, immunities and happiness prescribed for men and women respectively. There would be distinction on the basis of sex though the question of distinction on the basis of social class did not arise for the open unorganised society. In this context, the term, linga implies more than characteristic marks. (akasa tat lingat 1-1-22)
The same principle is applicable in the case of the persons who are at the bare existence level, prana, as in the case of those in the unorganized open society. The teacher draws attention to the social sector (akasa) which has not only no organized social or economic group and in which the members can be distinguished only on the basis of sex, but has not enabled its members to secure their livelihood through pursuit of a vocation. Its members are too poor and they are yet promised happiness through social welfare measures. It is not sound to interpret the term, prana, as implying breath or as implying Brahman (God).
Even as akasa referred to the unorganised social sector of free but insignificant individuals of the larger open society, prana indicated the people at the bare subsistence level. They too were not subject to distinction on the basis of social class. While interpreting the laws upheld by the Upanishads this aspect has to be borne in mind. (ata eva prana 1-1-23) Thibaut translates this as For the same reason breath (is Brahman).
The interpretation of the next epigram (1-1-24) as, the light (is Brahman), on account of the mention of feet (in a passage which is connected with the concept of light) is unsatisfactory. As the concept of offering at the feet of the luminary (is referred to) the teacher recommends that every social group or cadre or individual should offer its or his tributes to the luminary (jyoti) presiding over its sector.
During the Vedic times, Aditya, Agni, Soma, Vayu, Varuna, Aryaman etc. were the designations of such guides with distinct roles and jurisdictions as mentioned in the Upanishads. These offerings (at the feet of the luminary) indicate its or his submission to the authority of that luminary. The concept, Brahman, does not arise here. These luminaries (jyotis) who were social guides, ranked higher than the nobles and the sages. (jyoti carana abhidhanat 1-1-24)
Thibaut translates the formula (1-1-25) as If it be objected that (Brahman is) not (denoted) on account of the metre being denoted; (we reply) not so, because thus (i.e. by means of the metre) the direction of the mind (on Brahman) is declared; for thus it is seen (in other passages also.
If it is objected to that the chant does not mention the supremacy of the constitution, Brahma and does not overtly extol it, Badarayana would reply that the reference to the offering made to the higher authority indicated submission to that authority and the constitution that provided for those authorities. The teacher is hard put to explaining how he had posited the supremacy of the constitution. (chhanda abhidhanat na iti ca ita na tatha ca ita arpana nigadat tatha hi darsayati 1-1-25) Badarayana felt it necessary to defend the editors of Chhandogya Upanishad who had adopted a course not in line with his.
Thibaut reads the next formula (1-1-26) as And thus also (we must conclude, viz. that Brahman is the subject of the previous passage), because (thus only) the declaration as to the beings etc. being the feet is possible.
The interpretation that we must conclude that Brahman is the subject of the previous passage also because (thus only) the declaration as to the beings etc. being the feet is possible is not to the mark. The teacher, Badarayana, points out that that the chants, Chhandogya Upanishad, accept this position may be inferred from the reference to the bhutas (etc.) as forming the feet, base, (of the constitution, Brahma, visualised as a personage, purusha). This interpretation is plausible though a contrary view too is possible.
The discrete individuals of the social periphery who are not organized or settled clans are however the base of the social pyramid on which the constitution, Brahma, stands. In other words, it is not to be presumed that the constitution recognized only organised social groups like cadres, clans and communities which exercised control over their members and not the discrete individuals who enjoyed natural freedom as in the earliest times when these groups had not come into existence and man had not become subordinate to organised groups. The term, bhuta, has far-reaching meaning and is not to be treated as only including all beings, whether human or not.
The Upanishad introduces the students to different types of statuettes of Purusha where there are diverse bases. The Purusha figure with the face standing for the Brahmans, the hands for the Kshatriyas, the torso for the Vaisyas and the feet for the Shudras was one such figure. In the present figure, the jyotis, luminaries, are at a higher level and the discrete individuals (bhutas) of the social periphery and others who do not constitute social groups capable of guarding their interests are at the base. (bhutadi pada vyapadesa upapatta ca evam 1-1-26)
Thibaut interprets the next epigram (1-1-27) as, The objection that (the Brahman of the former passage cannot be recognized in the latter) on account of the difference of designation, is not valid because in either (designation) there is nothing contrary (to the recognition).
Badarayana tells his critics that there is no contradiction in the counsel, for the two submissions are not contrary. The students wondered whether the social periphery whose denizens, the discrete individuals, bhutas, formed the base of the social pyramid, that is, whether they were poorer than the persons of the open space, akasa, who were at the bare subsistence level, prana. They also wondered whether the social periphery was the same as the infinite open space, akasa, which it was said as organized industrial society, antariksham, ranked higher than the agrarian society of the plains, bhumi. The teacher explains that there is no contradiction in the two presentations.
The socio-political constitution, Brahma, advocated by the teachers of the Upanishads, who were stationed in their forest abodes on the social periphery, viewed that periphery as encircling both the plains and the forests and mountains, that is, the two organized societies, the agrarian and the industrial. There were persons at the bare subsistence level, prana, in all areas, whether plains or forests or mountains or mines or moors or open space. But the term, bhutas, referred to only the discrete individuals of the periphery, though some had used it to refer to all living beings, to all members of the larger society. The teacher denies that these are contradictory positions. (Upadesabhedat na iti ca na ubhayasmin naapi avirodhat 1-1-27)
The commentator explains the next formula (1-1-28) as prana (breath) is Brahman, that being understood from a connected consideration (of the passages referring to prana). It follows that Prana, the being at the base level (that is, at the bare subsistence level), is the same as the concept, Bhuta, the discrete individual of the social periphery. Is it so?
The teacher holds that the social constitution, Brahma, obtains its validity as a social welfare constitution applicable to all when it makes as its base either the living being at the bare subsistence level (prana) or the discrete individual (bhuta) of the periphery who as a person discarded by the agrarian society (bhu) and as a member of the subaltern lacks the necessary means of livelihood and social protection.
These weak have to be retrieved and their interests protected against exploitation by the members of organized social groups. Those at the bare subsistence level are not ignored, the teacher points out. (prana tatha anugamat 1-1-28)
The constitution may declare itself as being the protector of all persons at the bare subsistence level hat is, all the pranis, or as one protecting those in the social periphery, that is, the bhutas. The expression, sarvani bhutani, has been later interpreted as indicating all beings, especially all human beings.
The speaker was not presenting himself as an individual, atma, not connected with any social body (and as eligible to be brought under the framework of pranas eligible for constitutional protection). He was essentially an individual, adhyatma, who was connected with the concept, bhuma. The teacher acknowledges that he may be an individual belonging to the bourgeoisie with landed property (bhuma). The term, bhuma, is to be distinguished from the term, bhumipati, who was an owner of lands. The latter was part and head of an economic community.
The essential individual, adhyatma, who was not part of a social body but had liquid assets, could claim for his property and life and body as much protection as the individual, atma, who did not belong to any social body could or as one, who had no guaranteed means of livelihood as the discrete individual of the social periphery (bhuta) or as a member, prana, of the subaltern could. The social constitution protected the essential individual, adhyatma. (na vaktu atma upadesat iti ca it adhyatma sambandha bhuma hi asmin 1-1-29)
Thibaut translates this formula as If it be said that (Brahman is) not (denoted) on account of the speaker denoting himself; (wereply that the objection is not valid) because there is in that (chapter) a multitude of references to the interior Self.
Thibault notes in (1-1-30) that the declaration (made by Indra about himself, viz. that he is one with Brahman) (is possible) through intuition vouched for by the Scripture, as in the case of Vamadeva. Drshta does not imply intuition in this context. What Badarayana has stated so far is based on the counsels given by Vamadeva who cited the new social code, sastra. Vamadeva, a great Vedic sage, was an authority often cited on the relevance of the views of the sages of the earlier Vedic times to the new comprehensive and expanded society. He was associated with sages like Kashyapa and Vasishta.
The teacher refutes the allegation that his concept of adhyatma, the essential individual shorn of property and social affiliation, is irrelevant to the constitution that sought to protect the pranas at the level of the subaltern and the discrete individuals, bhutas, of the periphery. (sastra drshtatya tu upadesa vamadevatam 1-1-30)
It may be noted that an Indra who was known as Bahudantiputra or son of the lady with many teeth was an associate and guide of the famous emperor, Mamdhata. He was the author of a politico-economic code, Arthasastra, known as Bahudantakam and was a champion of Kshatriya supremacy. Vamadeva must have referred to the stand of this Indra that his code was in tune with the socio-political constitution, Brahma, of the Vedic times.
Thibaut reads the next formula (1-1-31) as, If it be said (that Brahman is) not (meant), on account of the characteristic marks of the individual soul and the vital air (being mentioned), we say no, on account of the threefold-ness of devout meditation, (which would result from your interpretation); on account of (the meaning advocated by us) (Badarayana) being accepted (elsewhere); and on account of (characteristic marks of Brahman) being connected (with the passage under discussion).
Badarayana points out that life is important for the living being and not sex. And honouring and adhering to the three disciplines of study through study and practice of yoga is called for here. The teacher denies that Vamadeva gave sex primary importance while dealing with the theory of social evolution and the ascent of man to higher levels of civilisation. He considered that protection of the species should be given importance and this was possible only through sex and reproduction of species. He was not a hedonist.
The teacher tells the followers of Vamadeva that the school of Yoga which the former was presiding over required its students to adhere to the teachings of all the three disciplines, vidyas, Trayi, Varta and Dandaniti that dealt with humanities, economic and political policy respectively. This school of yoga was open to both sexes though it did not accept the views of the school of Vamadeva. (jivamukhya prana lingat na iti ca ena upasa traividyat asritatvat iha tat yogat 1-1-31)
CHAPTER 1 SECTION 2
Badarayana told his students and others that he proposed to scrutinise the contents of the new code because it had been announced that it would be made applicable to all sections of the larger society. (sarvatra prasiddha upadesat 1-2-1) The interpretation given by Max Muller and Thibaut on the basis of the inferences that the commentators of the medieval times had arrived at about the purport of this section, (That which consists of mind is Brahman) because there is taught what is unknown from everywhere is untenable.
Thibaut interprets the next formula as And because the qualities desired to be expressed are possible (in Brahman; therefore the passage refers to Brahman. His argument that because the qualities that are desired are possible (only) in Brahman, the passage can refer only to Brahman (the Omniscient) is unacceptable. Badarayana implies that because the traits expected (in the officials manning the high judiciary, Brahma) are possible (and are not too idealistic) the new constitution (Brahma) is not utopian. (vivakshita guna upapatte ca 1-2-2)
Thibauts interpretation of the next formula (1-2-3) as, On the other hand, as (those qualities) are not possible (in it), the embodied (soul is) not (denoted by manomaya etc.) does not bring out its import fully. Badarayana explains to his students that far from being utopian those traits acquisition of which is impractical are not incorporated in it. The teacher points out that in the body (sarira) of the new code, no qualification or eligibility rule that cannot be complied with by any one or by most persons is included. (anupapatte tu na sarira 1-2-3)
Thibaut translates the next formula (1-2-4) as, And because there is a (separate) denotation of the object of activity and of the agent. There is a distinction between the deed (karma) and the executive (karta). The teacher points out that the code has separately defined what a duty performed is and who will be considered as having the traits and qualifications necessary for a person to be appointed to the position of the official (kartr) entrusted with that duty (karma). The translation by Thibaut of the term, karma, as object of activity, and of kartr as agent is not to the mark. (karma kartr vyapadesat ca 1-2-4) Badarayana belonged to the school of karmayoga that treated samkhya dialectics and the principles of exertion, yoga, as intrinsically related.
The teacher points out that the terms used in the new code have special meanings and do not convey the same sense as in the earlier and other codes. For instance, the terms, bhutas and pranas, are not used as having identical denotations. (sabda viseshat 1-2-5) Thibaut translates this formula as On account of the difference of words. Badarayana was cautioning his students against assuming that the terms used in the neo-Vedic literature like the Upanishads were used in the same sense as done in the earlier Vedic literature.
Thibaut translates the formula (1-2-6) as: And on account of Smrti. And it is necessary to take into account how they have been used in the past as noticed in the writings known as Smrtis. The authors of the present codes, Sastras, Smrtis, claim that they have incorporated in the body of their works the provisions of the constitution (Brahma) that was in vogue earlier. They claimed that they followed the meanings as told by the ancients and heard by the sages who composed the Vedas or Srutis. Badarayana must have been aware that there were differences in usages. The distinct usages have to be taken into account. (smrte ca 1-2-6)
The commentator explains the next formula (1-2-7) as, If it be said that (the passage does) not (refer to Brahman) on account of the smallness of the abode (mentioned), and on account of the denotations of that (i.e. of minuteness); we say, no; because (Brahman) has thus to be contemplated, and because the case is analogous to that of ether. The concept, ether, is not to be dragged in. In fact, it is not proper to proceed under the assumption that water, earth, fire, air and ether are five basic elements. Apa, Prthvi, Agni, Vayu and Akasa were designations of the officials of the early Vedic polity in charge of different areas of the larger society.
The new code uses the term, akasa to indicate the open space in the core society. It is small and stands different from the vast open space outside the core society. The latter too has been regarded as akasa. It is not logical to conclude that the jivatma that is present deep in the heart of man which is referred to as internal akasa and not part of the human body is the same as the paramatma who is supposed to pervade the infinite vast open space of the cosmos, the external akasa.
In (1-2-7) Badarayana elucidates that when he refers to jiva (life) as the main characteristic of prana (breath), that is, struggle for continuance of the species through sex for reproduction (linga) is the main theme in the life of the people at the bare subsistence level, he talks of the micro-society occupying the unnoticed depths of the core society as well as of the macro-society whose external areas have not come to the notice of the commoners and to that of even the thinkers and executives. (arbhaka okastvat tat vyapadesat na iti ca na nicayyatvat evam vyomavat ca 1-2-7)
Thibaut interprets the next formula (1-2-8) as If it is said that (from the circumstance of Brahman and the individual soul being one) there follows fruition (on the part of Brahman); we say, no; on account of thr difference of nature (of the two). The concept, sambhoga, does not warrant the introduction of the concept of union between the human soul, jivatma, and the great soul, paramatma. Need for sexual intercourse and the joy obtained thereby are not the special characteristics (referred to by Vamadeva). Badarayana points out that the school of yoga does not treat interaction between sexes and obtaining of delight through sexual intercourse as a social act or social duty. This school was against hedonism and against treating fulfilment of sex urge as a basic need of men and women. (sambhoga praptihi iti ca inna vaiseshyat 1-2-8)
Thibaut presents only a transliteration when he interprets the next formula (1-2-9) as The eater (is the highest Self) since what is movable and what is immovable is mentioned (as his food). It is wrong to introduce the concept asana and anasana here and interpret them as eating and non-eating. Some had opted to take up the ways of settled communities (cara) and some those of mobile groups (acara). It is necessary to distinguish between the life of those in the micro-society who have opted to stay as settled groups and the life of those in the macro-society who are constantly on the move.
For those in the small settled groups with meagre sources of livelihood sexual relations are meant more for reproduction of the species and its continued existence. The rules regulating these relations in the subaltern cannot be the same as those regulating sex relations present in the vast open society where it is sex for delight and resources are plenty. For the micro-society sex is an unavoidable necessity while for the large open society it is not a necessity but is related to its hedonistic way of life. The teacher was drawing attention to the apparent inadequacy in the theorem advanced by Vamadeva. (atta cara acara grahanat 1-2-9) Then he turns to the topic under discussion. (prakaranat ca 1-2-10)
Thibaut interprets the next formula (1-2-11) as The two entered the cave (are the individual soul and the highest Self); for the two are (intelligent) Selfs (and therefore of the same nature), as it is seen (that numerals denote beings of the same nature). Badarayana draws attention to the two individuals, the man and the woman who entered the dark deep place for sex. Introduction of the concepts, jivatma and paramatma here is unwarranted. (guha pravishtau atmanau hi tat darsanat 1-2-11)
And because of the distinction the teacher points out that it is apparent that the two who entered the cave for copulation and procreation did not belong to the same sex. Similarly, social interactions between different groups and strata are necessary for growth and development of the society, it is implied. (viseshanat ca 1-2-12) Thibaut translates this formula as And on account of the distinctive qualities (mentioned).
Thibaut interprets the next epigram (1-2-13) as, The person within (the eye is Brahman) on account of the agreement (of the attributes of that person with the nature of Brahman). The reference is to prana in the interior (the life within the body), on account of agreement. The teacher says that there has to be internal correspondence of traits in the two persons or groups or strata that interact silently if social relations are to prove productive. (antar upapatte 1-2-13)
Thibaut translates the next formula (1-2-14) as And on account of the statement of place and so on. The teacher points out that social relations can be beneficial only if there is compatibility in status etc. It is not enough to have willingness to have sexual or social relation with the other person. The two have to be from two different groups (sexes) but belong to the same social and economic status. The teacher was dealing with the issue of compatibility between the two individuals involved in sex. Sex and marriage cannot keep out the issue of social and economic status (sthana). The new social code hence while recognizing the right of the individual to choose his or her partner counsels that issues pertaining to social and economic compatibility are not to be ignored. (sthanadi vyapadesat ca 1-2-14)
Thibaut translates the formula (1-2-15) as And on account of the passage referring to that which is distinguished by pleasure (i.e. Brahman). The teacher justifies his stand on the basis of the passage (cited) drawing attention to which act is specially characterized as yielding happiness or comfort. He asks the student to note that social relations that do not result in wholesome satisfaction for both the interacting groups (or individuals or partners as in a sexual intercourse) cannot be upheld by the social code. In other words they should be beneficial to both and not be exploitation or coercion of one by the other. (sukha visishta abhidhanat eva ca 1-2-15)
Thibaut translates the formula (1-2-16) as And on account of the statement of the way of him who has heard the Upanishads. The teacher defends his position citing the explanation given by one who has heard the secret message, Upanishad, pertaining to the Veda or Sruti concerned. He explains that his interpretation has taken into account the stand taken by the earlier scholars who have drafted the Upanishads. (sruta upanishad ka gati abhidhanat ca 1-2-16)
Thibaut explains the next formula (1-2-17) as, (The person within the eye is the highest), not any other Self; on account of the non-permanence (of the other Selfs) and on account of the impossibility (of the qualities of the person in the eye being ascribed to the other Selfs). There is no possibility of the highest authority being located in a particular place, for instance, the eye. The teacher returns to the issue of the location of this high authority who has to observe all happenings and all activities. It is not sound to presume that the king or judge can directly observe all persons and all their deeds from his present station or by shifting to some other place where he will be a participant observer. Badarayana was not dealing with the concept of Brahman as omniscient and omnipresent God. (anavasthitera sambhavat ca na itara 1-2-17)
Thibaut translates the next formula (1-2-18) as The internal ruler over the devas and so on (is Brahman), because the attributes of that (Brahman) are designated. The highest among the nobles (devas) and the highest in the social world (loka) of commoners is the highest internal authority, according to the dharmasastra prescriptions. The teacher deals with a core society where the nobles (devas) ranked higher than the commoners (manushyas) who were engaged in economic activities. The controller of this core society has to be a member of this core society and not an outsider. He has to be superior to all the nobles (adhidaiva) and all the members of the commonalty (adhiloka).
(Some of the commentators of the earlier times were aware that devas were nobles and not gods, but later annotators lacking a rational perspective treated the devas as immortals and held them to be gods though they were hard put to explain how this stand could accord with the principles of monism or non-dualism, advaita.) Badarayana points out that the qualifications of such a ruler are prescribed and explained in the dharmasastra. (antaryami adhidaiva adhiloka adhishu tat dharma vyapadesat 1-2-18)
Thibaut interprets the next formula (1-2-19) as And (the internal ruler is) not that which the Smrti assumes (viz. the pradhana), on account of the statement of qualities not belonging to it. He missed the note. As the students cite a particular text of social code that is remembered to have prevailed earlier, the teacher says that the smrti referred to, mentioned traits not expected by dharma. The teacher says that the text of the Smrti may have mentioned certain qualifications as expected in a ruler who is to be assigned to the highest position. But these qualifications may not have been expected in a person who has to uphold the principles of dharma. In other words, the overlord may be able to wield the coercive power needed to control both the nobles and the commoners but he may not be able to uphold dharma, the laws pertaining to impartial justice. (na ca smartam atat dharma abhilashat 1-2-19)
Thibaut interprets the next formula (1-2-20) as And the embodied soul (also cannot be understood by the internal ruler), for both also (i.e. both recensions of the Brhad Aranyaka) speak of it as different (from the internal ruler). That the soul in the body, that is, the individual who is a member of a social body cannot be impartial is a rider mentioned and is referred to. The teacher advises the students to refer to the rider to the prescribed qualifications. Both the social worlds insist that the highest ruler must not be a member of either stratum. Neither the overlord nor the highest judge may belong to either of the two strata, nobility or commonalty, or to any social group, it has to be noted. He has to be a free person who stands away from all groups and strata. There is no need to bring into picture two divergent views as said to have been expressed in one of the Upanishads, namely Brhadaranyaka Upanishad. (sarira ca ubhaya api bheda nainam adhiyate 1-2-20)
The interpretation of the next formula (1-2-21) as presented by Thibaut, That which possesses the attributes of invisibility and so on, (is Brahman), on account of the declaration of attributes is not to the mark. Badarayana implies that it is mentioned in the code of dharma that invisibility is its trait. He does not state that God is invisible. The teacher holds that according to the new code based on the concept of dharma, the influence of that high authority that is deep in the core society is latent and not obtrusively manifest. (adrsya adigunya dharma ubake 1-2-21)
According to Thibauts translation of (1-2-22), the two others (i.e. the individual soul and the pradhana) are not (the source of all beings) because there are distinctive attributes and differences. It is not rational to introduce the concept of Brahman as the pradhana, the primordial that determines the features and activities of different types of beings. The two primordials referred to are not sources of authority as their specific attributes are contrary to each other. These two are distinct from the nobility, devas, and commoners, manushyas.
The teacher holds that the traits of the unattached individual of the micro-society who is at the subsistence level (that is, of prana) are different from those of the distant individual of the macro-society (that is, of Vayu) who is constantly on the move, though both these individuals are capable of being neutral and hence deserving to be judge-cum-ruler. But the teacher does not recommend either of them for this high position. (viseshana bheda vyapadesabhya ca na itarau 22)
The transliteration of (1-2-23), And on account of its form being mentioned, fails to convey the import of the next epigram. It is more correct to state that And the structure of the total society has been described. The teacher, Badarayana, draws attention to the structure (rupa) of the larger society, visva, described in the allegory before explaining who could stand aloof from all social groups and yet represent all of them. (rupa upanyasat ca 1-2-23)
The commentator translates the formula (1-2-24) as, Vaisvanara (is the highest Lord) on account of the distinction qualifying the common terms (Vaisvanara and Self). Vaisvanara is that highest and impartial authority who guards the interests of all while not pursuing his own. The distinguishing traits are present in that common expression. The teacher does not want to term this authority as a super-power. He is a free man, nara, not bound to any social group including the family in which he was born and is free to move amongst all social cadres and groups whether organized or not and at whatever social or economic level these groups find themselves. He is a Vaisvanara, the representative of the universal society whose structure is denoted by the term, Visvarupa. (vaisvanara sadharana sabda viseshat 1-2-24)
It is necessary to be at every stage aware of the distinction between the terms, manushya and nara. The manushyas were commoners and during the Vedic times ranked below the gandharvas who constituted the free middle class and the nobles, devas. They were organised in clans and communities and did not enjoy the same amount of freedom as the naras who formed the lower ranks of the gandharvas did. A nara, a free man, who was associated with all sectors of the larger society was deemed to be eligible to represent that society. He was referred to as Vaisvanara and the structure of that larger society was referred to as Visvarupa.
Thibaut translates the next formula (1-1-25) as, (And) because that which is stated by Smrti (i.e. the shape of the highest Lord as described by Smrti) is an inference (i.e. an indicatory mark from which we infer the meaning of Sruti). The phrase cannot be construed as granting validity to the visualizing of God as a colossus. Smrti, the Dharma code, takes the above position. It may be inferred so because of this need for a view to be valid and authoritative for all sections of the larger society. The teacher defends the concept of Vaisvanara as representing Visvarupa. The interests of the larger universal social structure, Visvarupa, are best represented by Vaisvanara. Vaisvanara too was but a human being. (smaryamanam anumanam syat iti 25)
According to the interpretation (of formula 1-2-26) provided by the commentators of the medieval times and followed by Thibaut and Max Muller, If it be maintained that (Vaisvanara is) not (the highest Lord) on account of the term (viz. Vaisvanara, having a settled different meaning) etc. and on account of his abiding within (which is characteristic of the gastric fire) (we say) no, on account of the perception (of the highest Lord), being taught thus (viz. in the gastric fire), and on account of the impossibility (of the heavenly world etc. being the head etc. of the gastric fire), and because they (the Vajasaneyins) read of him (viz. the Vaisvanara) as man (which term cannot apply to the gastric fire).
If it is argued that the above term Vaisvanara does not denote the highest authority as it has a different meaning on account of his being situated inside the body politic and not stationed above it to be able to control it, that argument is countered as not likely. The counsel of the sages requires us to notice it (him) as such high representative authority. They (Vajasaneyas) read of him as a social leader (purusha) who is ahead of others. The teacher points out that a personage who leads the entire larger society knowing the views and needs of all its sections will be at the head of it though he belongs to its core and yet not to any particular social group. The interpretation that Vaisvanara meant the internal gastric fire (agni) has come down from the medieval times and has misled the social philosophers of the modern times. This perception is irrational.
Agni was the designation of the Vedic official who represented the commonalty, manushyas, of the agrarian core society. He was also its civil judge. The irrepressible and primal (hot like lava) urge that the core of the society has to get released from the depths and merge in the structured society enveloping it finds expression in the views of the Vaisvanara. An ideal social leader, purusha, takes along with him the entire society including this deep subaltern whose conduct may seem to be ferocious and primal. The purusha shares this irrepressible urge as he pushes ahead of others while representing the cause of all his followers. The term, purusha, is not to be transliterated as man or male. It had a specific meaning indicating one who had the ability to lead others from within or from the front. (sabdhadhibhya antapratishtanat ca na iti ca na tatha drshtat upadesat asambhavat purusham api ca enam adhiyate 1-2-26)
The commentator translates the next phrase (1-2-27) as For the same reasons (the Vaisvanara) cannot be the divinity (of fire) or the element (of fire). The terms, deva and devata are not to be interpreted as indicating divine beings. They were also human beings. The term, bhuta, was used to indicate the discrete individuals of the social periphery in particular. For the same reason as cited above the Vaisvanara cannot be a devata, a plutocrat or a technocrat who heads the frontier industrial society or a bhuta, a discrete individual of the social periphery. Visvarupa was an intellectual and technocrat and claimed the status of a Brahman as an intellectual and a devata. The term, deva, indicated a liberal aristocrat.
In an attempt to bring together the two societies, agro-pastoral core society and the industrial frontier society, plutocrats, yakshas, who controlled the latter were given the status of devatas, a rank marginally lower than that of devas, cultural aristocrats, who led the core society. Technocrats who were also intellectuals claimed a rank equal to that of these plutocrats.
The teacher recommends that an innately dynamic person, purusha, who emerges from the deep core of the agrarian society rather than from its commonalty, manushyas, or from its governing elite, devas, is best suited to be the representative of the larger society as Vaisvanara. Neither an aristocrat (deva) nor a plutocrat (devata) is suitable for this position. Similarly the discrete individuals (bhutas) of the social periphery who are in fact dropouts from the commonalty (bhu) of the core society are not fit to become such leaders (purushas) or free representatives of the larger society (vaisvanara). (ata eva na devata bhuta na 1-2-27)
Thibaut reads the formula 1-2-28 as Jaimini (declares that there is) no contradiction even on the assumption of a direct (worship of the highest Lord as Vaisvanara). To be precise, there is no direct contradiction between the two concepts, purusha and vaisvanara, according to Jaimini. A social leader, purusha, who is ahead of all his followers and is at the threshold of the aristocracy can represent as vaisvanara, the entire large universe if he has risen from the depths of the core society. The people at this lowest level are said to be uneducated and untamed. But they have an irrepressible urge to overcome all obstructions that keep them back.
This urge was likened to the gastric fire that is deep within mans gut and also was when the solar system appeared with hot balls cooling down to form themselves into planets. But these concepts were adopted to explain the emergence of the irrepressible urge of the early men who were at the bare subsistence level to rise up high in the socio-economic ladder. (sakshat api avirodham jaimini 1-2-28) It is not sound to declare that Badarayana was citing Jaimini only to contradict his stand. The two were equally great thinkers of the early Upanishadic times though they did not think alike.
Thibaut translates the next phrase (1-2-29) as, On account of the manifestation, so Asmarathya opines. The teacher says that in the opinion of Asmarathya, (an anonymous teacher?) the description of Visvarupa as emerging from the ocean and rising to a very great height and having a certain span, only indicates the expression of the internal primal power of the representative of the larger society, Vaisvanara, who had his roots in the lowest rungs of the core society and its manifestation as the social leader, Purusha, traversing all the ranks of the mega-society. This entire picture is indicated by the term, abhivyakta. (abhivyakta iti Asmarathya 29)
The commentator translates the next phrase (1-3-30) as On account of remembrance, so Badari opines. The teacher notices that identification of Vaisvanara with Visvarupa, the Purusha, was in tune with the stand taken by the Smrti, according to Badari. In other words the extant Vedic hymns do not indicate any school of thought having shared this stand that the great towering personage, Visvarupa, was indeed the manifestation of the irrepressible urge of the subaltern to free itself from its shackles and spurt into and gush forth as an awesome and unchained power of the total society. (Prometheus Unbound?) Badarayana was a follower of Badari. (anusmrta iti Badari 1-2-30)
It may be noted here that Vamana who humbled Usanas in a debate on the provisions of the political code, Dandaniti and exiled the feudal lord, Bali, from Janasthana in the Vindhyas was later identified with Vishnu who was claimed to have taken the form of a colossus, Visvarupa, for this purpose. The Vedic poet however rejected this view. Vamana looked like a dwarf (perhaps because he was a hunchback). He was not a technocrat. He was not Vishnu, an associate of Vivasvan. He was not a Vaisvanara either though he spoke for the entire society of seven social worlds.
Thibaut translates the next statement (1-2-31) as, On the ground of imaginative identification (the highest Lord may be called pradesamatra), Jaimini thinks; for thus (Scripture) declares. The commentator notes that Ananda Giri is seen to have used the term pradesamatra to indicate a minute particle that moves in all areas and is not bound by regional limits. Jaimini thinks that it is but an equating of the two concepts. This is indicated by his elucidation. The total society with several strata is compared with the towering figure rising from the bottom of the sea and his head vanishing into the high clouds of the sky. Nothing beyond poetic imagination is to be read in this, according to Jaimini. (sampatte iti Jaimini tatha hi darsayati 1-2-31)
Thibaut translates the next formula (1-2-32) as, Moreover they (the Jabalas) speak of him (the highest Lord) in that (i.e. the interstice between the top of the head and the chin which is measured by a span). The height of this Purusha in terms of span is a proportion of the height from the chin to the top of the head to the width measured by the open palm. The teacher draws attention to the decrying of the concept of Visvarupa by the Jabalas who were rationalists but were condemned as heretics and who argued that it only indicated that the height of a man was proportionate to the height of his skull and hence it was irrational to talk in terms of a super-man. (amananti ca enam asmin 1-2-32)