Page:Sacred Books of the East - Volume 15.djvu/90

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SECOND Khanda


1. This is the truth[1]: the sacrificial works which they (the poets) saw in the hymns (of the Veda) have been performed in many ways in the Tretâ age[2]. Practise[3] them diligently, ye lovers of truth, this is your path that leads to the world of good works[4]!

2. When the fire is lighted and the flame flickers, let a man offer his oblations between the two portions of melted butter, as an offering with faith.

3. If a man's Agnihotra sacrifice[5] is not followed

  1. In the beginning of the second Khanda the lower knowledge is first described, referring to the performance of sacrifices and other good deeds. The reward of them is perishable, and therefore a desire is awakened after the higher knowledge.
  2. The Tretâ age is frequently mentioned as the age of sacrifices. I should prefer, however, to take tretâ in the sense of trayî vidyâ, and santata as developed, because the idea that the Tretâ age was distinguished by its sacrifices, seems to me of later origin. Even the theory of the four ages or yugas, though known in the Ait. Brâhmana, is not frequently alluded to in the older Upanishads. See Weber, Ind. Stud. I, p. 283.
  3. The termination tha for ta looks suspiciously Buddhistic; see "Sanskrit Texts discovered in Japan," J.R.A.S. 1880, p. 180.
  4. Svakrita and sukrita are constantly interchanged. They mean the same, good deeds, or deeds performed by oneself and believed to be good.
  5. At the Agnihotra, the first of all sacrifices, and the type of many others, two portions of âgya are sacrificed on the right and left side of the Âhavanîya altar. The place between the two is called the Âvâpasthâna, and here the oblations to the gods are to be offered. There are two oblations in the morning to Sûrya and Pragâpati, two in the evening to Agni and Pragâpati. Other sacrifices, such as the Darsa and Pûrnamâsa, and those mentioned in verse 3, are connected with the Agnihotra.