More Stories from the Brahmana Literature (Post No.4045)

Compiled by London Swaminathan
Date: 2 July 2017
Time uploaded in London-15-05
Post No. 4045

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks.

Extra Terrestrials in Tandya Maha Brahmana

The Lord of creatures offered himself a sacrifice for the benefit of the Devas. The Devas were mortals who thus became divine or glorified.

Apastamba (2-7-16) comments on this are interesting:

“Formerly men and gods lived together in this world. Then the gods in reward of their sacrifices went to heaven, but men were left behind. Those men who perform sacrifices in the same manner as the gods did, dwell (after death) with the gods and Brahma in heaven.

“Whatever sins we have committed by day or night, you are the annulment thereof. Whatever sins we have committed sleeping or awake you are the annulment thereof. Whatever sins we have committed knowing or unknown you are the annulment thereof. You are the annulment of sin.


Why Asvamedha is performed?

Prajapati, having created all living beings, through affection entered within them. But afterwards he could not get out of them. He said, “whoever will extricate me from this confinement will become wealthy. The Devas performed an Asvamedha and thereby extricated him; thus they became wealthy. Whoever performs an Asvamedha attains profusion of wealth by extricating Prajapati—Taittiriya Brahmana


Why a cow immediately on calving should not be milked?

Certain descendants of Angiras, the expounder of the fourth Veda, had a lean white milch cow, which for want of grass lived on the pressed stalks of Soma vine. The sight of this grieved the owners much, and they performed a sacrifice which brought on plenteous rain, every drop of which grew up into nutritious vegetables. The Pitris (manes) besmeared them with poison when the cow was affected, and appeared before the sacrificers. They enquired who had caused the evil, whereupon the pitris (departed souls) said, we co -sharers of the ceremony, have caused this.

The sacrificers then gave a share of the sacrifice to the Pitris who benignantly removed the poison. When the cow was fattened by profusion of fodder, the calf was let loose  and requested by  the sacrificers  to drink a little milk and leave the rest for the sacrifice. The calf refused to do so unless they would engage to milk the cow for the first ten days after calving, and to allow the calf to suck for a period equal to one fifth of the day or night after morning and evening milking. The calf which drinks for a longer period is cursed by Rudra.

My comments:

Even a cursory reading will tell us that the story is symbolic.  Literally it may look like a meaningless story. Moreover, stories like this must be read in their contexts.




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