The Rig Veda/Mandala 8/Hymn 85

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The Rig Veda
Mandala 8, Hymn 85
Translated by Ralph T.H. Griffith
1. FOR him the Mornings made their courses longer, and Nights with pleasant voices spake to Indra.
     For him the Floods stood still, the Seven Mothers, Streams easy for the heroes to pass over.
2. The Darter penetrated, though in trouble, thrice-seven close-pressed ridges of the mountains.
     Neither might God nor mortal man accomplish what the Strong Hero wrought in full-grown vigour.
3. The mightiest force is Indra's bolt of iron when firmly grasped in both the arms of Indra.
     His head and mouth have powers that pass all others, and all his people hasten near to listen.
4. 1 count thee as the Holiest of the Holy, the caster-down of what hath ne'er been shaken.
     I count thee as the Banner of the heroes, I count thee as the Chief of all men living.
5. What time, O Indra, in thine arms thou tookest thy wildly rushing bolt to Slay the Dragon,
     The mountains roared, the cattle loudly bellowed, the Brahmans with their hymns drew nigh to Indra.
6. Let us praise him who made these worlds and creatures, all things that after him sprang into being.
     May we win Mitra with our songs, and Indra, and. wait upon our Lord with adoration.
7. Flying in terror from the snort of Vrtra, all Deities who were thy friends forsook thee.
     So, Indra, be thy friendship with the Maruts: in all these battles thou shalt be the victor.
8. Thrice-sixty Maruts, waxing strong, were with thee, like piles of beaming light, worthy of worship.
     We come to thee: grant us a happy portion. Let us adore thy might with this oblation.
9. A sharpened weapon is the host of Maruts. Who, Indra, dares withstand thy bolt of thunder?
     Weaponless are the Asuras, the godless: scatter them with thy wheel, Impetuous Hero.
10. To him the Strong and Mighty, most auspicious, send up the beAuteous hymn for sake of cattle.
     Lay oa his body many songs for Indra invoked with song, for will not he regard. them?
11. To him, the Mighty, who accepts laudation, send forth thy thought as by a boat o'er rivers,
     Stir with thy hymn the body of the Famous and Dearest One, for will not he regard it?
12. Serve him with gifts of thine which Indra welcomes: praise with fair praise, invite him with thine homage.
     Draw near, O singer, and refrain from outcry. Make thy voice heard, for will not he regard it?
13. The Black Drop sank in Amsumati's bosom, advancing with ten thousand round about it.
     Indra with might longed for it as it panted: the hero-hearted laid aside his weapons.
14. 1 saw the Drop in the far distance moving, on the slope bank of Amsumati's river,
     Like a black cloud that sank into the water. Heroes, I send you forth. Go, fight in battle.
15. And then the Drop in Amsumati's bosom, splendid with light, assumed its proper body;
     And Indra, with Brhaspati to aid him, conquered the godless tribes that came against him.
16. Then, at thy birth, thou wast the foeman, Indra, of those the seven who ne'er had met a rival.
     The hidden Pair, the Heaven and Earth, thou foundest, and to the mighty worlds thou gavest pleasure.
17. So, Thunder-armed! thou with thy bolt of thunder didst boldly smite that power which none might equal;
     With weapons broughtest low the migbt of Susna, and, Indra, foundest by thy strength the cattle.
18. Then wast thou, Chieftain of all living mortals, the very mighty slayer of the Vrtras.
     Then didst thou set the obstructed rivers flowing, and win the floods that were enthralled by Dasas.
19. Most wise is he, rejoicing in libations, splendid as day, resistless in his anger.
     He only doth great deeds, the only Hero, sole Vrtra-slayer he, with none beside him.
20. Indra is Vrtra's slayer, man's sustainer: he must be called; with fair praise let us call him.
     Maghavan is our Helper, our Protector, giver of spoil and wealth to make us famous.
21. This Indra, Vrtra-slayer, this Rbhuksan, even at his birth, was meet for invocation.
     Doer of many deeds for man's advantage, like Soma quaffed, for friends we must invoke him.