Brahma Sutras Chapter 3. 4


Brahma Sutras 3.4

Purusharthadhikaranam -  Topic 1 (Sutra 1-17)

Knowledge of Brahman is independent of sacrificial acts


Purushartho’tah sabdaditi baadarayanah  |III.4.1 (426)

From this (Brahma Vidya or Brahma Jnana results) the purpose or the chief object of pursuit of man, because the scriptures state so; thus (holds) the sage Baadarayana.

Purusharthah - purpose of man, object of human pursuit, here the chief object, i.e., salvation;
Atah - from this, from Brahma Vidya;
Sabdat - from the scriptures, because the scriptures state so, from Sruti;
Iti - so thus (says), this is the opinion of;
Baadarayanah - the sage Baadarayana, (holds).


Seshatvatpurusharthavado yathanyeshviti jaiminih  |III.4.2 (427)

Because (the self) is supplementary (to sacrificial acts), (the fruits of the Knowledge of the Self) are mere praise of the agent, as in other cases; thus Jaimini opines.

Seshatvat - because of being supplementary (to sacrificial acts);
Pususharthavadah - are mere praise or the agent;
Yatha - as;
Anyeshu - in other cases;
Iti - thus (says);
Jaiminih - Jaimini (holds).


Acharadarsanat  |III.4.3 (428)

Because we find (from the scriptures such) conduct (of men of realisation).

Acharadarsanat - because of the conduct found (from the scriptures).


Tacchruteh  |III.4.4 (429)

Because scripture directly declares that (viz., that knowledge of Brahman stands in a subordinate relation to sacrificial acts.)

Tat - that, that knowledge is subsidiary and supplementary to sacrifice;
Sruteh - from Sruti, because the scriptures directly declare.


Samanvarambhanat  |III.4.5 (430)

Because the two (knowledge and work) go together (with the departing soul to give fruits of actions).

Samanvarambhanat - because of the accompanying together, as they jointly follow the sacrificer to produce their effects on account of their taking hold together or being together.


Tadvato vidhanat  |III.4.6 (431)

Because (the scriptures) enjoin (works) for such (only who understand the purport of the Vedas).

Tadvatah - for such (as know the purport of the Vedas);
Vidhanat - because (the scriptures) enjoin (work).


Niyamaccha  |III.4.7 (432)

And on account of prescribed rules.

Niyamat - on account of prescribed rules, because of compulsory injunction;
Cha - also, and.


Adhikopadesaattu baadarayanasyaivam taddarsanat  |III.4.8 (433)

But because (the scriptures) teach (the Supreme Self to be) other (than the agent), Baadarayana’s view is correct (or valid) for that is seen thus (in scriptural passages).

Adhikopadesat - because (the sriptures) teach (the Supreme Self to be) something over and above;
Tu - but;
Baadarayanasya - of Baadarayana;
Evam - thus, such (is the opinion);
Taddarsanat - for that is seen (from the scriptures).
(Adhika - Supreme Being, more different; Upadesat - from the statement in Sruti, owing to the teaching about.)


Tulyam tu darsanam  |III.4.9 (434)

But the declarations of the Sruti equally support both views.

Tulyam - the same, similar, equal;
Tu - but;
Darsanam - declaration of the Sruti.


Asarvatriki  |III.4.10 (435)

(The scriptural declaration referred to in Sutra 4) is not of universal application.

Asarvatriki - not universal, not applicable everywhere.


Vibhagah satavat  |III.4.11 (436)

There is division of knowledge and work as in the case of a hundred (divided between two persons).

Vibhagah - (there is) division of knowledge and work;
Satavat - as in the case of a hundred (divided between two persons).


Adhyayanamatravatah  |III.4.12 (437)

(The scriptures enjoin work) on those who have merely read the Vedas.

Adhyayanamatravatah - of one who has merely read the Vedas.


Naviseshat  |III.4.13 (438)

There being no specification (the rule does) not (specially apply to him who knows, i. e., a Jnani).

Na - not, compulsion does not apply;
Aviseshat - on account of the absence of any specification, because there is no special mention.


Stutaye’numatirva  |III.4.14 (439)

Or rather the permission (to do work) is for the glorification (of knowledge).

Stutaye - for the purpose of glorification (of knowledge);
Anumatih - permission;
Va - or, rather.


Kamakarena chaike  |III.4.15 (440)

And some according to their own liking (have abandoned all works).

Kamakarena - according to their own liking;
Cha - and;
Eke - some.


Upamardam cha  |III.4.16 (441)

And (scripture teaches that the) destruction (of all qualifications for work results from knowledge).

Upamardam - complete destruction, putting an end to all actions;
Cha - and.


Urdhvaretassu cha sabde hi   |III.4.17 (442)

And (knowledge belongs) to those who observe perpetual celibacy, because in scripture (that stage of life is mentioned).

Urdhvaretassu - to those who observe perpetual celibacy, in those stages of life where the sexual energy has an upward flow;
Cha - and;
Sabde - in the Sruti;
Hi - because.

Paramarsadhikaranam -  Topic 2 (Sutras 18-20)

Sannyasa is prescribed by the scriptures


Paramarsam jaiminirachodana chapavadati hi  |III.4.18 (443)

Jaimini (considers that scriptural texts mentioning those stages of life in which celibacy is obligatory, contain) a reference (only to those stages; they are not injunctions; because other (scriptural texts) condemn (those stages).

Paramarsam - a passing allusion, mere reference;
Jaiminih - Jaimini;
Achodana - there is no clear injunction;
Cha - and;
Apavadati - condemns;
Hi - because, clearly, certainly.


Anushtheyam baadarayanah samyasruteh  |III.4.19 (444)

Baadarayana (holds that Sannyasa) also must be gone through, because the scriptural text (quoted) refers equally to all the four Ashramas or stages of life.

Anushtheyam - should be practised;
Baadarayanah - Baadarayana, the author of the Sutras;
Samyasruteh -  for the scriptural text refers equally to all the four Ashramas.


Vidhirva dharanavat  |III.4.20 (445)

Or rather (there is an) injunction (in this text) as in the case of carrying (of the sacrificial wood).

Vidhih - injunction;
Va - or rather;
Dharanavat - as in the case of carrying (of the sacrificial wood).

Stutimatradhikaranam -  Topic 3 (Sutras 21-22)

Scriptural texts as in Chh. Up. I.1.3. which refer to Vidyas are not mere praises but themselves enjoin the meditations


Stutimatramupadanaditi chennapurvatvat  |III.4.21 (446)

If it be said that (texts such as the one about the Udgitha are) mere glorifications on account of their reference (to parts of sacrifices), (we say) not so, on account of the newness (of what they teach, if viewed as injunctions).

Stutimatram - mere praise;
Upadanat - on account of their reference (to parts of sacrificial acts);
Iti - thus, so; Chet - if; Na - not so;
Apurvatvat - on account of its newness.
(Iti chet - if it be said).


Bhavasabdaccha  |III.4.22 (447)

And there being words expressive of injunction.

Bhavasabaat - from words indicative of existence of injunction in Sruti;
Cha - and, also, moreover.

Pariplavadhikaranam -  Topic 4 (Sutras 23-24)

The stories mentioned in the Upanishads do not serve the purpose of Pariplavas and so do not form part of the ritualistic acts. They are meant to euloisge the Vidya taught in them


Pariplavartha iti chenna viseshitatvat  |III.4.23 (448)

If it be said (that the stories told in the Upanishads) are for the purpose of Pariplava (only, we say) not so, because (certain stories above) are specified (by the Sruti for this purpose).

Pariplavarthah - for the purpose of Pariplavas;
Iti - so; Chet - if; Na - not so;
Viseshitatvat - because of specification, on account of (certain stories alone) being specified. (Iti chet - if it be said.)


Tatha chaikavakyatopabandhat  |III.4.24 (449)

And so (they are meant to illustrate the nearest Vidyas), being connected as one coherent whole.

Tatha - so, similarly;
Cha - and;
Ekavakyatopabandhat - being connected as one whole.
(Ekavakya - unity cf construction or of statements or that of sense; Upabandhat - because of connection.)

Agnindhanadyadhikaranam -  Topic 5 (Sutra 25)

Sannyasins need not observe ritualistic acts, as Brahma Vidya or knowledge serves their purpose


Ata eva chagnindhanadyanapeksha  |III.4.25 (450)

And, therefore, there is no necessity of the lighting of the fire and so on.

Ata eva - therefore, only, for this reason only;
Cha - and, also;
Agni - fire;
Indhanadi - fire-wood, and so on, kindling fire and performing sacrifices, etc.;
Anapeksha - no need, has not to be depended upon.
(Agni-indhanadianapeksha - no necessity of lighting fires, etc.)

Sarvapekshadhikaranam -  Topic 6 (Sutras 26-27)

Works prescribed by the scriptures are means to the attainment of knowledge


Sarvapeksha cha yajnadi sruterasvavat  |III.4.26 (451)

And there is the necessity of all works because the scriptures prescribe sacrifices, etc., (as means to the attainment of knowledge) even as the horse (is used to draw a chariot, and not for ploughing).

Sarvapeksha - there is the necessity of all works;
Cha - and;
Yajnadisruteh - for the scriptures prescribe sacrifices, etc., (as means to knowledge);
Asvavat - like a horse, as in the case of the horse.


Samadamadyupetah syat tathapi tu tadvidhestadangataya teshamavasyanushtheyatvat  |III.4.27 (452)

But all the same (even though there is no injunction to do sacrificial acts to attain knowledge in the Brihadaranyaka text) one must possess serenity, self-control and the like, as these are enjoined as auxiliaries to knowledge and therefore have necessarily to be practised.

Samadamadyupetah syat - one must possess serenity, self-control and the like;
Tathapi - still, all the same, even if it be so;
Tu - verily;
Tadvidheh - as they are enjoined;
Tadangataya - on account of their being a part, as helps to knowledge;
Tesham - their;
Avasyanushtheyatvat - because it being necessary to be practised.
(Avasya - necessarily; Anushtheyatvat - because they must be practised.)

Sarvannanumatyadhikaranam -  Topic 7 (Sutras 28-31)

Food-restrictions may be given up only when life is in danger


Sarvannanumatischa pranatyaye taddarsanat  |III.4.28 (453)

Only when life is in danger (there is) permission to take all food (i.e., take food indiscriminately) because the Sruti declares that.

Sarvannanumatih - permission to take all sorts of food;
Cha - only;
Pranatyaye - when life is in danger;
Taddarsanat - because the Sruti declares that.


Abadhatccha  |III.4.29 (454)

And because (thus) (the scriptural statements with respect to food) are not contradicted.

Abadhat - because of a non-contradiction, as there is no contrary statement anywhere in Sruti;
Cha - and, also, moreover, on account of non-sublation.


Api cha smaryate   |III.4.30 (455)

And moreover the Smritis say so.

Api - also; Cha - moreover;
Smaryate - the Smriti says so, it is seen in the Smritis, it is prescribed by Smriti.


Sabdaschato’kamakare  |III.4.31 (456)

And hence the scripture prohibiting license.

Sabdah - the scriptural passage;
Cha - and;
Atah - hence;
Akamakare - to prevent undue license, prohibiting license, as to non-proceeding according to liking.

Ashramakarmadhikaranam -  Topic 8 (Sutras 32-35)

The duties of Ashrama are to be performed by even one who is not desirous of salvation


Vihitatvacchasramakarmapi  |III.4.32 (457)

And the duties of the Ashramas (are to be performed also by him who does not desire emancipation) because they are enjoined (on him by the scriptures).

Vihitatvat - because they are enjoined;
Cha - and;
Ashrama- karma - duties of the Ashrama, or order of life;
Api - also.


Sahakaritvena cha  |III.4.33 (458)

And (the duties are to be performed also) as a means to knowledge.

Sahakaritvena - as, an auxiliary, on account of cooperativeness, as means to knowledge; Cha - and.


Sarvathapi ta evobhayalingat  |III.4.34 (459)

In all cases the same duties (have to be performed), because of the twofold indicatory marks.

Sarvatha - in all cases, in every respect, under any circumstance;
Api - also;
Ta eva - the same duties (have to be performed);
Ubhayalingat - because of the twofold inferential signs.
(Ta - they, the sacrificial works; Eva - certainly.)


Anabhibhavam cha darsayati   |III.4.35 (460)

And the scripture also declares (that he who is endowed with Brahmacharya) is not overpowered (by passion, anger, etc.).

Anabhibhavam - not being overpowered;
Cha - and;
Darsayati - the scripture shows, the Srutis declare.

Vidhuradhikaranam -  Topic 9 (Sutras 36-39)

Those who stand midway between two Ashramas also are qualified for knowledge


Antara chapi tu taddrishteh  |III.4.36 (461)

And (persons standing) in between (two Ashramas) are also (qualified for knowledge), for that is seen (in scripture).

Antara - (persons standing) in between (two Ashramas);
Cha - and;
Api tu - also;
Taddrishteh - such cases being seen, (as it is seen in Sruti, because it is so seen).


Api cha smaryate  |III.4.37 (462)

This is stated in Smriti also.

Api -  also, too;
Cha - moreover, and;
Smaryate - is stated in Smriti, the Smriti records such cases.


Viseshanugrahascha  |III.4.38 (463)

And the promotion (of knowledge is bestowed on them) through special acts.

Visesha - special;
Anugrahah - favour;
Cha - and.
(Viseshanu- grahah - special advantage, advantage or favour accruing from extraordinary good works done in the previous life.)


Atastvitarajjyayo lingaccha  |III.4.39 (464)

Better than this is the other (state of belonging to an Ashrama) on account of the indicatory marks (in the Sruti and the Smriti).

Atah - from this, than this, than the intermediate state mentioned above;
Tu - but;
Itarat - the other, the state belonging to a prescribed order of life;
Jyayah - better, superior;
Lingat - because of the indicatory marks, from such indications in the scripture, from indication, signs, inferences;
Cha - and.

Tadbhutadhikaranam -  Topic 10 (Sutra 40)

He who has taken Sannyasa cannot revert back to his former stages of life


Tadbhutasya tu natadbhavo jaiminerapi niyamatadrupabhavebhyah   |III.4.40 (465)

But for one who has become that (i.e. entered the highest Ashrama, i.e., Sannyasa) there is no reverting (to the preceding ones) on account of restrictions prohibiting such reversion or descending to a lower order. Jaimini also (is of this opinion).

Tadbhutasya - of one who has become that, for one who has attained that (highest Ashrama);
< strong>Tu - but; Na - no;
Atadbhavah - lapse from that stage, falling away from that;
Jaimineh - according to Jaimini, of Jaimini (is this opinion);
Api - also, even;
Niyamatadrupabhavebhyah - on account of the restrictions prohibiting such reversion.
(Niyamat - because of the strict rule; Atadrupdbhavebhyah - because there is no statement permitting it, and because it is against custom; Abhavebhyah - because of the absence of that.)

Adhikaradhikaranam -  Topic 11 (Sutras 41-42)

Expiation for one who has broken the vow of Sannyasa


Na chadhikarikamapi patananumanattadayogat   |III.4.41 (466)

And there is no fitness for expiation in the case of a Naishthika Brahmacharin (who is immoral), because a fall (in his case) is inferred from the Smriti and because of the inefficacy (in his case) of the expiatory ceremony.

Na - not; Cha - and;
Adhikarikam - (expiation) mentioned in the chapter that deals with the qualification;
Api - also, even;
Patananumanat - because of a fall (in his case) is inferred from the Smriti;
Tadayogat - because of its (of the expiatory ceremony) inefficiency in his case.


Upapurvamapi tveke bhavamasanavattaduktam  |III.4.42 (467)

But some (consider the sin) a minor one (and therefore claim) the existence (of expiation for the Naishthika Brahmacharin also); as in the case of eating (of unlawful food). This has been explained (in the Purvamimamsa).

Upapurvam - (Upapurvaka-patakam, Upapatakam) a minor sin;
Api tu - but, however;
Eke - some (say);
Bhavam - possibility of expiation;
Asanavat - as in the eating (prohibited food);
Tat - this;
Uktam - is explained (in Purvamimamsa).

Bahiradhikaranam -  Topic 12 (Sutra 43)

The life-long celibate who fails to keep up his vow must be excluded by society


Bahistubhayathapi smriteracharaccha  |III.4.43 (468)

But (they are to be kept) outside the society in either case, on account of the Smriti and custom.

Bahih - outside;
Tu - but;
Ubhayatha - in either case, whether it be a grave sin or a minor sin;
Api - also, even;
Smriteh - on account of the statement of the Smriti, from the Smriti;
Acharat - from custom;
Cha - and.

Svamyadhikaranam -  Topic 13 (Sutras 44-46)

The meditations connected with the subordinate members of sacrificial acts (Yajnangas) should be observed by the priest and not by the sacrifice


Svaminah phalasruterityatreyah  |III.4.44 (469)

To the sacrificer (belongs the agentship in meditations) because the Sruti declares a fruit (for it) -  thus Atreya (holds).

Svaminah - of the master, of the sacrificer or Yajamana;
Phalasruteh - from the declaration in Sruti of the results;
Iti - so, thus;
Atreyah - the sage Atreya (holds).


Artvijyamityaudulomistasmai hi parikriyate  |III.4.45 (470)

(They are) the duty of the Ritvik (priest), this is the view of Audulomi, because he is paid for that (i.e., the performance of the entire sacrifice).

Artvijyam - the duty of the Ritvik (priest);
Iti - thus;
Audulomih - the sage Audulomi (thinks);
Tasmai - for that;
Hi - because;
Parikriyate - he is paid.


Srutescha  |III.4.46 (471)

And because the Sruti (so) declares.

Sruteh - from the Sruti;
Cha - and.

Sahakaryantaravidhyadhikaranam -  Topic 14 (Sutras 47-49)

In Bri. Up. III.5.1 meditation is enjoined besides the child-like state and scholarship


Sahakaryantaravidhih pakshena tritiyam tadvato vidhyadivat   |III.4.47 (472)

There is the injunction of something else, i.e., meditation, cooperation (towards knowledge) (which is) a third thing (with regard to Balya or state of a child and Panditya or scholarship), (which injunction is given) for the case (of perfect knowledge not yet having arisen) to him who is such (i.e., the Sannyasin possessing knowledge); as in the case of injunctions, and the like.

Sahakaryantaravidhih - a separate auxiliary injunction;
Pakshena - as an alternative;
Tritiyam - the third;
Tadvatah - for one who possesses it, (i.e., knowledge);
Vidhyadivat - just as in the case of injunctions and the like.


Kritsnabhavattu grihinopasamharah  |III.4.48 (473)

On account of his being all, however, there is winding up with the householder.

Kritsnabhavat - on account of the householder’s life including all;
Tu - verily;
Grihina - by a householder, with the householder;
Upasamharah - the conclusion, the goal, salvation, (the Chapter) ends.
(Kritsna - of all (duties); Bhavat - owing to the existence; Grihinopasamharah - conclusion with the case of the householder.)


Maunavaditareshamapyupadesat  |III.4.49 (474)

Because the scripture enjoins the other (stages of life, viz., Brahmacharya and Vanaprastha), just as it enjoins the state of a Muni (Sannyasi).

Maunavat - just as silence, like constant meditation, like the state of a Muni (Sannyasi); Itaresham - of the others, of the other orders of life;
Api - even, also;
Upadesat - because of scriptural injunction.

Anavishkaradhikarnam -  Topic 15 (Sutra 50)

Child-like state means the state of innocence, being free from egoism, lust, anger, etc.


Anavishkurvannanvayat  |III.4.50 (475)

(The child-like state means) without manifesting himself, according to the context.

Anavishkurvan - without manifesting himself;
Ananvayat - according to the context.

Aihikadhikaranam -  Topic 16 (Sutra 51)

The time of the origination of knowledge when Brahma Vidya is practised


Aihikamapyaprastutapratibandhe taddarsanat  |III.4.51 (476)

In this life (the origination of knowledge takes place) if there be no obstruction to it (the means adopted), because it is so seen from the scriptures.

Aihikam - in this life;
Api - even;
Aprastutapratibandhe - in the absence of an obstruction to it (the means adopted); Taddarsanat - as it is seen in Sruti.
(Aprastuta - not being present; Pratibandhe - obstruction; Tat - that; Darsanat - being declared by the scriptures.)

Muktiphaladhikaranam -  Topic 17 (Sutra 52)

Liberation is a state without difference. It is only one


Evam muktiphalaniyamastadavasthavadhritestadavasthavadhriteh  |III.4.52 (477)

No such definite rule exists with respect to emancipation, the fruit (of knowledge), because the Sruti asserts that state (to be immutable).

Evam - thus, like this;
Muktiphalaniyamah - there is no rule with respect to the final emancipation, the fruit (of knowledge);
Tadavasthavadhriteh - on account of the assertions by the Sruti as to that condition. (Mukti - salvation; Phala - fruit; Aniyamah - there is no rule; Tat - that; Avastha - condition; Avadhriteh - because the Sruti has ascertained so.)