Page:Sacred Books of the East - Volume 42.djvu/38

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XXxiv HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

��Atharvanic, and the practices by which its recitation is supplemented might be described in the Kau^ika-sutra. The formula yo asman dvesh/i ykin kd. vaya;/^ dvishma/^, ' he that hates us and whom we hate ' (shall perish, or the like); occurs countless times in the Ya^us-texts, as well as in the Atharvan charms. The aims and the acts of the Atharvan are present at the Vedic sacrifice, as well as at the practices of private life ; the difference lies in the degree of applicability, and the degree of prominence : in the i-ruti-literature the sphere of the Atharvan is restricted to matters that are incidental and subsidiary, intended merely to pave the way for the main issue, the successful dispatching of the sacrifice to the gods, and the undis- turbed gratification of the priests (the ish/am and the pur- tam). Under these circumstances and at such a time pronounced hostility against the Atharvan would be a paradox, too silly even for the Ya^us-texts and the Brah- mawas ; no such hostility or repugnance is in evidence : that is reserved for a later and more reflective age.

In the first place then, the mythic personages Atharvan, Aiigiras, and Bh/7gu, whose proper names in the course of time are growingly restricted to the sphere of the Atharvan, continue in their pristine position of demi-gods. At Maitr. S. I, 6, i the Arigiras are still gods,. arigirasa;;z tva devana;;^ vratena ^ dadhe ; similarly Tait. Br. I, 1,4, 8, bhr/gu;/a;// tva^ngirasa;/^ vratapate vratena^dadhami ; cf. also Tait. Br. Ill, 2, 7, 6; Maitr. S. I, i, 8; Va^- S. I, 18 (5at. Br. I, 2, I, 13; Katy. Sx. II, 4, 3'"^) 5 Apast. Sx. V, 11,7. For Atharvan, see Tait. S. V, i, 4, 3 ; 6, 6, 3 ; Tait. Br. I, I, 10, 4 ; Va^. S. VIII, -^6 ; XI, 32. And so innu- merable other instances. Needless to say, the descendants of the three divinities, conceived eponymically as the founders of families of ^/shis, the Atharva;/a, Aiigirasa, and Bhargava, enjoy the same rights, and hold the same position of honour as the other families of ./^zshis, it being reserved for the later Atharvan writings to extol them beyond measure, and to establish them as the typical teachers ^ Thus Atharvan Daiva is the name of an ancient

^ Cf. Weber, Omina und Portenta, p. 347.

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