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MAṆḌALA 1

Sūkta 20

 

1. Info

To:    ṛbhus
From:   medhātithi kāṇva
Metres:   gāyatrī
 

 

2. Audio

 

▪   by South Indian brahmins

 

▪   by Sri Shyama Sundara Sharma and Sri Satya Krishna Bhatta. Recorded by © 2012 Sriranga Digital Software Technologies Pvt. Ltd.

 
 

 

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3. Text

01.020.01   (Mandala. Sukta. Rik)

1.2.01.01    (Ashtaka. Adhyaya. Varga. Rik)

01.05.019   (Mandala. Anuvaka. Rik)

Samhita Devanagari Accented

अ॒यं दे॒वाय॒ जन्म॑ने॒ स्तोमो॒ विप्रे॑भिरास॒या ।

अका॑रि रत्न॒धात॑मः ॥

Samhita Devanagari Nonaccented

अयं देवाय जन्मने स्तोमो विप्रेभिरासया ।

अकारि रत्नधातमः ॥

Samhita transliteration accented

ayám devā́ya jánmane stómo víprebhirāsayā́ ǀ

ákāri ratnadhā́tamaḥ ǁ

Samhita transliteration nonaccented

ayam devāya janmane stomo viprebhirāsayā ǀ

akāri ratnadhātamaḥ ǁ

Padapatha Devanagari Accented

अ॒यम् । दे॒वाय॑ । जन्म॑ने । स्तोमः॑ । विप्रे॑भिः । आ॒स॒या ।

अका॑रि । र॒त्न॒ऽधात॑मः ॥

Padapatha Devanagari Nonaccented

अयम् । देवाय । जन्मने । स्तोमः । विप्रेभिः । आसया ।

अकारि । रत्नऽधातमः ॥

Padapatha transliteration accented

ayám ǀ devā́ya ǀ jánmane ǀ stómaḥ ǀ víprebhiḥ ǀ āsayā́ ǀ

ákāri ǀ ratna-dhā́tamaḥ ǁ

Padapatha transliteration nonaccented

ayam ǀ devāya ǀ janmane ǀ stomaḥ ǀ viprebhiḥ ǀ āsayā ǀ

akāri ǀ ratna-dhātamaḥ ǁ

interlinear translation

This [1] hymn [4] giving the ecstasy [8] is made [7] for divine [2] birth [3] by illumined seers [5] by mouth [6].

01.020.02   (Mandala. Sukta. Rik)

1.2.01.02    (Ashtaka. Adhyaya. Varga. Rik)

01.05.020   (Mandala. Anuvaka. Rik)

Samhita Devanagari Accented

य इंद्रा॑य वचो॒युजा॑ तत॒क्षुर्मन॑सा॒ हरी॑ ।

शमी॑भिर्य॒ज्ञमा॑शत ॥

Samhita Devanagari Nonaccented

य इंद्राय वचोयुजा ततक्षुर्मनसा हरी ।

शमीभिर्यज्ञमाशत ॥

Samhita transliteration accented

yá índrāya vacoyújā tatakṣúrmánasā hárī ǀ

śámībhiryajñámāśata ǁ

Samhita transliteration nonaccented

ya indrāya vacoyujā tatakṣurmanasā harī ǀ

śamībhiryajñamāśata ǁ

Padapatha Devanagari Accented

ये । इन्द्रा॑य । व॒चः॒ऽयुजा॑ । त॒त॒क्षुः । मन॑सा । हरी॒ इति॑ ।

शमी॑भिः । य॒ज्ञम् । आ॒श॒त॒ ॥

Padapatha Devanagari Nonaccented

ये । इन्द्राय । वचःऽयुजा । ततक्षुः । मनसा । हरी इति ।

शमीभिः । यज्ञम् । आशत ॥

Padapatha transliteration accented

yé ǀ índrāya ǀ vacaḥ-yújā ǀ tatakṣúḥ ǀ mánasā ǀ hárī íti ǀ

śámībhiḥ ǀ yajñám ǀ āśata ǁ

Padapatha transliteration nonaccented

ye ǀ indrāya ǀ vacaḥ-yujā ǀ tatakṣuḥ ǀ manasā ǀ harī iti ǀ

śamībhiḥ ǀ yajñam ǀ āśata ǁ

interlinear translation

Who [1] for Indra [2] fashioned [4] by mind [5] his two bright horses [6], yoked by the speech [3], {they} enjoy [9] sacrifice [8] by achievement of works [7].

01.020.03   (Mandala. Sukta. Rik)

1.2.01.03    (Ashtaka. Adhyaya. Varga. Rik)

01.05.021   (Mandala. Anuvaka. Rik)

Samhita Devanagari Accented

तक्ष॒न्नास॑त्याभ्यां॒ परि॑ज्मानं सु॒खं रथं॑ ।

तक्ष॑न्धे॒नुं स॑ब॒र्दुघां॑ ॥

Samhita Devanagari Nonaccented

तक्षन्नासत्याभ्यां परिज्मानं सुखं रथं ।

तक्षन्धेनुं सबर्दुघां ॥

Samhita transliteration accented

tákṣannā́satyābhyām párijmānam sukhám rátham ǀ

tákṣandhenúm sabardúghām ǁ

Samhita transliteration nonaccented

takṣannāsatyābhyām parijmānam sukham ratham ǀ

takṣandhenum sabardughām ǁ

Padapatha Devanagari Accented

तक्ष॑न् । नास॑त्याभ्याम् । परि॑ऽज्मानम् । सु॒ऽखम् । रथ॑म् ।

तक्ष॑न् । धे॒नुम् । स॒बः॒ऽदुघा॑म् ॥

Padapatha Devanagari Nonaccented

तक्षन् । नासत्याभ्याम् । परिऽज्मानम् । सुऽखम् । रथम् ।

तक्षन् । धेनुम् । सबःऽदुघाम् ॥

Padapatha transliteration accented

tákṣan ǀ nā́satyābhyām ǀ pári-jmānam ǀ su-khám ǀ rátham ǀ

tákṣan ǀ dhenúm ǀ sabaḥ-dúghām ǁ

Padapatha transliteration nonaccented

takṣan ǀ nāsatyābhyām ǀ pari-jmānam ǀ su-kham ǀ ratham ǀ

takṣan ǀ dhenum ǀ sabaḥ-dughām ǁ

interlinear translation

{They} fashioned [1] for Nasatyas (lords of the journey, Ashvins) [2] all-pervading [3] happy [4] chariot [5], fashioned [6] milch-cow (perception from Svar) [7] giving its rich yield of milk [8].

01.020.04   (Mandala. Sukta. Rik)

1.2.01.04    (Ashtaka. Adhyaya. Varga. Rik)

01.05.022   (Mandala. Anuvaka. Rik)

Samhita Devanagari Accented

युवा॑ना पि॒तरा॒ पुनः॑ स॒त्यमं॑त्रा ऋजू॒यवः॑ ।

ऋ॒भवो॑ वि॒ष्ट्य॑क्रत ॥

Samhita Devanagari Nonaccented

युवाना पितरा पुनः सत्यमंत्रा ऋजूयवः ।

ऋभवो विष्ट्यक्रत ॥

Samhita transliteration accented

yúvānā pitárā púnaḥ satyámantrā ṛjūyávaḥ ǀ

ṛbhávo viṣṭyákrata ǁ

Samhita transliteration nonaccented

yuvānā pitarā punaḥ satyamantrā ṛjūyavaḥ ǀ

ṛbhavo viṣṭyakrata ǁ

Padapatha Devanagari Accented

युवा॑ना । पि॒तरा॑ । पुन॒रिति॑ । स॒त्यऽम॑न्त्राः । ऋ॒जु॒ऽयवः॑ ।

ऋ॒भवः॑ । वि॒ष्टी । अ॒क्र॒त॒ ॥

Padapatha Devanagari Nonaccented

युवाना । पितरा । पुनरिति । सत्यऽमन्त्राः । ऋजुऽयवः ।

ऋभवः । विष्टी । अक्रत ॥

Padapatha transliteration accented

yúvānā ǀ pitárā ǀ púnaríti ǀ satyá-mantrāḥ ǀ ṛju-yávaḥ ǀ

ṛbhávaḥ ǀ viṣṭī́ ǀ akrata ǁ

Padapatha transliteration nonaccented

yuvānā ǀ pitarā ǀ punariti ǀ satya-mantrāḥ ǀ ṛju-yavaḥ ǀ

ṛbhavaḥ ǀ viṣṭī ǀ akrata ǁ

interlinear translation

Having the true thoughts [4], going straight [5] Ribhus [6] in their pervasion [7] made [8] Parents (Earth and Heaven) [2] young [1] again [3].

01.020.05   (Mandala. Sukta. Rik)

1.2.01.05    (Ashtaka. Adhyaya. Varga. Rik)

01.05.023   (Mandala. Anuvaka. Rik)

Samhita Devanagari Accented

सं वो॒ मदा॑सो अग्म॒तेंद्रे॑ण च म॒रुत्व॑ता ।

आ॒दि॒त्येभि॑श्च॒ राज॑भिः ॥

Samhita Devanagari Nonaccented

सं वो मदासो अग्मतेंद्रेण च मरुत्वता ।

आदित्येभिश्च राजभिः ॥

Samhita transliteration accented

sám vo mádāso agmaténdreṇa ca marútvatā ǀ

ādityébhiśca rā́jabhiḥ ǁ

Samhita transliteration nonaccented

sam vo madāso agmatendreṇa ca marutvatā ǀ

ādityebhiśca rājabhiḥ ǁ

Padapatha Devanagari Accented

सम् । वः॒ । मदा॑सः । अ॒ग्म॒त॒ । इन्द्रे॑ण । च॒ । म॒रुत्व॑ता ।

आ॒दि॒त्येभिः॑ । च॒ । राज॑ऽभिः ॥

Padapatha Devanagari Nonaccented

सम् । वः । मदासः । अग्मत । इन्द्रेण । च । मरुत्वता ।

आदित्येभिः । च । राजऽभिः ॥

Padapatha transliteration accented

sám ǀ vaḥ ǀ mádāsaḥ ǀ agmata ǀ índreṇa ǀ ca ǀ marútvatā ǀ

ādityébhiḥ ǀ ca ǀ rā́ja-bhiḥ ǁ

Padapatha transliteration nonaccented

sam ǀ vaḥ ǀ madāsaḥ ǀ agmata ǀ indreṇa ǀ ca ǀ marutvatā ǀ

ādityebhiḥ ǀ ca ǀ rāja-bhiḥ ǁ

interlinear translation

The intoxications of rapture [3] have came [4] to you [2] with [1] Indra [5] attended by the Maruts [7] and [6] with kings [10] Adityas (sons of the boundless mother Aditi) [8].

01.020.06   (Mandala. Sukta. Rik)

1.2.02.01    (Ashtaka. Adhyaya. Varga. Rik)

01.05.024   (Mandala. Anuvaka. Rik)

Samhita Devanagari Accented

उ॒त त्यं च॑म॒सं नवं॒ त्वष्टु॑र्दे॒वस्य॒ निष्कृ॑तं ।

अक॑र्त च॒तुरः॒ पुनः॑ ॥

Samhita Devanagari Nonaccented

उत त्यं चमसं नवं त्वष्टुर्देवस्य निष्कृतं ।

अकर्त चतुरः पुनः ॥

Samhita transliteration accented

utá tyám camasám návam tváṣṭurdevásya níṣkṛtam ǀ

ákarta catúraḥ púnaḥ ǁ

Samhita transliteration nonaccented

uta tyam camasam navam tvaṣṭurdevasya niṣkṛtam ǀ

akarta caturaḥ punaḥ ǁ

Padapatha Devanagari Accented

उ॒त । त्यम् । च॒म॒सम् । नव॑म् । त्वष्टुः॑ । दे॒वस्य॑ । निःऽकृ॑तम् ।

अक॑र्त । च॒तुरः॑ । पुन॒रिति॑ ॥

Padapatha Devanagari Nonaccented

उत । त्यम् । चमसम् । नवम् । त्वष्टुः । देवस्य । निःऽकृतम् ।

अकर्त । चतुरः । पुनरिति ॥

Padapatha transliteration accented

utá ǀ tyám ǀ camasám ǀ návam ǀ tváṣṭuḥ ǀ devásya ǀ níḥ-kṛtam ǀ

ákarta ǀ catúraḥ ǀ púnaríti ǁ

Padapatha transliteration nonaccented

uta ǀ tyam ǀ camasam ǀ navam ǀ tvaṣṭuḥ ǀ devasya ǀ niḥ-kṛtam ǀ

akarta ǀ caturaḥ ǀ punariti ǁ

interlinear translation

And [1] that [2] new [4] perfectly made [7] cap [3] of divine [6] Twashtri [5] {they} made [8] four times [9] again [10].

01.020.07   (Mandala. Sukta. Rik)

1.2.02.02    (Ashtaka. Adhyaya. Varga. Rik)

01.05.025   (Mandala. Anuvaka. Rik)

Samhita Devanagari Accented

ते नो॒ रत्ना॑नि धत्तन॒ त्रिरा साप्ता॑नि सुन्व॒ते ।

एक॑मेकं सुश॒स्तिभिः॑ ॥

Samhita Devanagari Nonaccented

ते नो रत्नानि धत्तन त्रिरा साप्तानि सुन्वते ।

एकमेकं सुशस्तिभिः ॥

Samhita transliteration accented

té no rátnāni dhattana trírā́ sā́ptāni sunvaté ǀ

ékamekam suśastíbhiḥ ǁ

Samhita transliteration nonaccented

te no ratnāni dhattana trirā sāptāni sunvate ǀ

ekamekam suśastibhiḥ ǁ

Padapatha Devanagari Accented

ते । नः॒ । रत्ना॑नि । ध॒त्त॒न॒ । त्रिः । आ । साप्ता॑नि । सु॒न्व॒ते ।

एक॑म्ऽएकम् । सु॒श॒स्तिऽभिः॑ ॥

Padapatha Devanagari Nonaccented

ते । नः । रत्नानि । धत्तन । त्रिः । आ । साप्तानि । सुन्वते ।

एकम्ऽएकम् । सुशस्तिऽभिः ॥

Padapatha transliteration accented

té ǀ naḥ ǀ rátnāni ǀ dhattana ǀ tríḥ ǀ ā́ ǀ sā́ptāni ǀ sunvaté ǀ

ékam-ekam ǀ suśastí-bhiḥ ǁ

Padapatha transliteration nonaccented

te ǀ naḥ ǀ ratnāni ǀ dhattana ǀ triḥ ǀ ā ǀ sāptāni ǀ sunvate ǀ

ekam-ekam ǀ suśasti-bhiḥ ǁ

interlinear translation

Establish [4] for us [2] for pressing {soma} [8], three times [5] by [6] seven1 [7] those [1] ecstasies [3] each separately [9] by perfect utterances [10].

1 This is a key note: Two fundamental conceptions of Rigveda are behind two rows of manifold figures that are united by numbers three and seven. Without understanding of these two conceptions anybody hardly can understand properly the Rigveda itself.

The three is a number of objective planes of being, measured out by three steps of Vishnu (see 1.154-1.155). Two lower are the worlds where men moves – Heaven-Earth (physical and mental) with Antariksha (vital) in-between. The third world, Mahas-Svar, is a supramental world of the Truth. (Let’s note by the way, that another parallel system of objective worlds is a system of five earths: They have said about five-footed with twelve forms Father living in в supreme realm of Heaven; then these other ones say about all-seeing fixed upon having seven wheels having six spokes, 1.164.12.

The seven is a number of subjective principles of consciousness, of One Ocean of the Being, the seven forms-currents of consciousness-being, penetrating all three objective planes of being: Seven rivers bring his hearing of the Truth (i.e. inspired knowledge), Heaven-Earth, Earth is visible embodiment (1.102.2); Seven regions-wombs, the semen of being, stand in the order and law by command of Vishnu; they by thoughts, by mind, they illumined in consciousness, everywhere existing, on every side all around come into being (1.164.36); I proclaim three-headed seven-rayed whole Agni sitting within two parents (Earth and Heaven), him moving, eternal, filling all bright planes of Heaven. (1.146.1); The masters of sacrifice have found in Agni thrice seven hidden secret planes (1.72.6); Establish for us for pressing soma, three times by seven those ecstasies each separately by perfect utterances (1.20.7); Thrice, O Ashvins, with the seven mothers-rivers fill three jars (1.34.8). This seven often are named as mothers, maidens, wombs, because they give birth and give being, they increase and care: The seven ones yoke chariot having one wheel, the one horse having seven names bears, the imperishable unobstructable three-naved wheel where all these worlds have stood upon. (1.164.2). Those who are seven have stood upon this chariot, seven horses bear having seven wheels; seven sisters together move there where are set seven names of cows (1.164.3); I call divine Waters from which our cows (perceptions from supramental Svar) drink (1.23.18). They bear all that exists and Surya himself, so they often named as horses: Seven shining horses carry thee in chariot, O God, O Sun (1.50.8); Surya has yoked seven pure daughters of chariot (1.50.9). They flow out from the one Ocean and flow back into It: seven rivers flowing to ocean. (1.71.7). But for their free movement they must be released from their imprisonment in the rock of material existence: Indra released to flow the seven rivers (1.32.12); Thou, verily, O Indra, fighting hast broke asunder the seven strongholds (1.63.7). And they themselves for their freedom step forward on all seven planes of conscious being as the seven seers, the seven Rishis, the seven Angirases, as one Angiras speaking by seven mouths, as seven-headed thought, as seven warriors, flaming and aspiring together with God to freedom and non-icebound flow of current of conscious being: whom (Agni) seven tongues of flame embrace in pilgrim-sacrifices of chanting sage (1.58.7); Indra by perfect stubh, he by stubh roaring with seven illumined seers has split asunder the mountain-receptacle, O Indra, with the Dashagvas by cry caused Vala to burst. (1.62.4); thou (O Indra) goest, with thrice seven warriors. (1.133.6).

01.020.08   (Mandala. Sukta. Rik)

1.2.02.03    (Ashtaka. Adhyaya. Varga. Rik)

01.05.026   (Mandala. Anuvaka. Rik)

Samhita Devanagari Accented

अधा॑रयंत॒ वह्न॒योऽभ॑जंत सुकृ॒त्यया॑ ।

भा॒गं दे॒वेषु॑ य॒ज्ञियं॑ ॥

Samhita Devanagari Nonaccented

अधारयंत वह्नयोऽभजंत सुकृत्यया ।

भागं देवेषु यज्ञियं ॥

Samhita transliteration accented

ádhārayanta váhnayó’bhajanta sukṛtyáyā ǀ

bhāgám devéṣu yajñíyam ǁ

Samhita transliteration nonaccented

adhārayanta vahnayo’bhajanta sukṛtyayā ǀ

bhāgam deveṣu yajñiyam ǁ

Padapatha Devanagari Accented

अधा॑रयन्त । वह्न॑यः । अभ॑जन्त । सु॒ऽकृ॒त्यया॑ ।

भा॒गम् । दे॒वेषु॑ । य॒ज्ञिय॑म् ॥

Padapatha Devanagari Nonaccented

अधारयन्त । वह्नयः । अभजन्त । सुऽकृत्यया ।

भागम् । देवेषु । यज्ञियम् ॥

Padapatha transliteration accented

ádhārayanta ǀ váhnayaḥ ǀ ábhajanta ǀ su-kṛtyáyā ǀ

bhāgám ǀ devéṣu ǀ yajñíyam ǁ

Padapatha transliteration nonaccented

adhārayanta ǀ vahnayaḥ ǀ abhajanta ǀ su-kṛtyayā ǀ

bhāgam ǀ deveṣu ǀ yajñiyam ǁ

interlinear translation

Bearers of the offerings [2] held [1] and distributed [3] in gods [6] sacrificial [7] share [5] by good work [4].

Translations and commentaries by Sri Aurobindo

1. May 19151

The Ribhus, Artisans of Immortality

1.20.1 Lo, the affirmation made for the divine Birth with the breath of the mouth by illumined minds, that gives perfectly the bliss;

1.20.2 Even they who fashioned by the mind for Indra his two bright steeds that are yoked by Speech, and they enjoy the sacrifice by their accomplishings of the work.

1.20.3 They fashioned for the twin lords of the voyage their happy car of the all-pervading movement, they fashioned the fostering cow that yields the sweet milk.

1.20.4 O Ribhus, in your pervasion you made young again the Parents, you who seek the straight path and have the Truth in your mentalisings.

1.20.5 The raptures of the wine come to you entirely, to you with Indra companioned by the Maruts and with the Kings, the sons of Aditi.

1.20.6 And this bowl of Twashtri new and perfected you made again into four.

1.20.7 So establish for us the thrice seven ecstasies, each separately by perfect expressings of them.

1.20.8 They sustained and held in them, they divided by perfection in their works the sacrificial share of the enjoyment among the Gods.

Commentary

The Ribhus, it has been suggested, are rays of the Sun. And it is true that like Varuna, Mitra, Bhaga and Aryaman they are powers of the solar Light, the Truth. But their special character in the Veda is that they are artisans of Immortality. They are represented as human beings who have attained to the condition of godhead by power of knowledge and perfection in their works. Their function is to aid Indra in raising man towards the same state of divine light and bliss which they themselves have earned as their own divine privilege. The hymns addressed to them in the Veda are few and to the first glance exceedingly enigmatical; for they are full of certain figures and symbols always repeated. But once the principal clues of the Veda are known, they become on the contrary exceedingly clear and simple and present a coherent and interesting idea which sheds a clear light on the Vedic gospel of immortality.

The Ribhus are powers of the Light who have descended into Matter and are there born as human faculties aspiring to become divine and immortal. In this character they are called children of Sudhanwan2, a patronymic which is merely a parable of their birth from the full capacities of Matter touched by the luminous energy. But in their real nature they are descended from this luminous Energy and are sometimes so addressed, “Offspring of Indra, grandsons of luminous Force.” For Indra, the divine mind in man, is born out of luminous Force as is Agni out of pure Force, and from Indra the divine Mind spring the human aspirations after Immortality.

The names of the three Ribhus are, in the order of their birth, Ribhu or Ribhukshan, the skilful Knower or the Shaper in knowledge, Vibhwa or Vibhu, the Pervading, the self-diffusing, and Vaja, the Plenitude. Their names indicate their special nature and function, but they are really a trinity, and therefore, although usually termed the Ribhus, they are also called the Vibhus and the Vajas. Ribhu, the eldest is the first in man who begins to shape by his thoughts and works the forms of immortality; Vibhwa gives pervasiveness to this working; Vaja, the youngest, supplies the plenitude of the divine light and substance by which the complete work can be done. These works and formations of immortality they effect, it is continually repeated, by the force of Thought, with the mind for field and material; they are done with power; they are attended by a perfection in the creative and effective act, svapasyayā sukṛtyayā, which is the condition of the working out of Immortality. These formations of the artisans of Immortality are, as they are briefly summarised in the hymn before us, the horses of Indra, the car of the Ashwins, the Cow that gives the sweet milk, the youth of the universal Parents, the multiplication into four of the one drinking-bowl of the gods originally fashioned by Twashtri, the Framer of things.

The hymn opens with an indication of its objective. It is an affirmation of the power of the Ribhus made for the divine Birth, made by men whose minds have attained to illumination and possess that energy of the Light from which the Ribhus were born. It is made by the breath of the mouth, the life-power in the world. Its object is to confirm in the human soul the entire delight of the Beatitude, the thrice seven ecstasies of the divine Life.

This divine Birth is represented by the Ribhus who, once human, have become immortal. By their accomplishings of the work,– the great work of upward human evolution which is the summit of the world-sacrifice,– they have gained in that sacrifice their divine share and privilege along with the divine powers. They are the sublimated human energies of formation and upward progress who assist the gods in the divinising of man. And of all their accomplishings that which is central is the formation of the two brilliant horses of Indra, the horses yoked by speech to their movements, yoked by the Word and fashioned by the mind. For the free movement of the luminous mind, the divine mind in man, is the condition of all other immortalising works.

The second work of the Ribhus is to fashion the chariot of the Ashwins, lords of the human journey,– the happy movement of the Ananda in man which pervades with its action all his worlds or planes of being, bringing health, youth, strength, wholeness to the physical man, capacity of enjoyment and action to the vital, glad energy of the light to the mental being,– in a word, the force of the pure delight of being in all his members.

The third work of the Ribhus is to fashion the cow who gives the sweet milk. It is said elsewhere that this cow has been delivered out of its covering skin,– the veil of Nature’s outward movement and action,– by the Ribhus. The fostering cow herself is she of the universal forms and universal impetus of movement, viśvajuvaṃ viśvarūpām, in other words she is the first Radiance, Aditi, the infinite Consciousness of the infinite conscious Being which is the mother of the worlds. That consciousness is brought out by the Ribhus from the veiling movement of Nature and a figure of her is fashioned here in us by them. She is, by the action of the powers of the duality, separated from her offspring, the soul in the lower world; the Ribhus restore it to constant companionship with its infinite mother.

Another great work of the Ribhus is in the strength of their previous deeds, of the light of Indra, the movement of the Ashwins, the full yield of the fostering Cow to restore youth to the aged Parents of the world, Heaven and Earth. Heaven is the mental consciousness, Earth the physical. These in their union are represented as lying long old and prostrate like fallen sacrificial posts, worn-out and suffering. The Ribhus, it is said, ascend to the house of the Sun where he lives in the unconcealed splendour of his Truth and there slumbering for twelve days afterwards traverse the heaven and the earth, filling them with abundant rain of the streams of Truth, nourishing them, restoring them to youth and vigour. They pervade heaven with their workings, they bring divine increase to the mentality; they give to it and the physical being a fresh and young and immortal movement3. For from the home of the Truth they bring with them the perfection of that which is the condition of their work, the movement in the straight path of the Truth and the Truth itself with its absolute effectivity in all the thoughts and words of the mentality. Carrying this power with them in their pervading entry into the lower world, they pour into it the immortal essence.

It is the wine of that immortal essence with its ecstasies which they win by their works and bring with them to man in his sacrifice. And with them come and sit Indra and the Maruts, the divine Mind and its Thought-forces, and the four great Kings, sons of Aditi, children of the Infinite, Varuna, Mitra, Aryaman, Bhaga, the purity and vastness of the Truth-consciousness, its law of love and light and harmony, its power and aspiration, its pure and happy enjoyment of things.

And there at the sacrifice the gods drink in the fourfold bowl, camasaṃ caturvayam, the pourings of the nectar. For Twashtri, the Framer of things, has given man originally only a single bowl, the physical consciousness, the physical body in which to offer the delight of existence to the gods. The Ribhus, powers of luminous knowledge, take it as renewed and perfected by Twashtri’s later workings and build up in him from the material of the four planes three other bodies, vital, mental and the causal or ideal body.

Because they have made this fourfold cup of bliss and enabled him thereby to live on the plane of the Truth-consciousness they are able to establish in the perfected human being the thrice seven ecstasies of the supreme existence poured into the mind, vitality and body. Each of these they can give perfectly by the full expression of its separate absolute ecstasy even in the combination of the whole.

The Ribhus have power to support and contain all these floods of the delight of being in the human consciousness; and they are able to divide it in the perfection of their works among the manifested gods, to each god his sacrificial share. For such perfect division is the whole condition of the effective sacrifice, the perfect work.

Such are the Ribhus and they are called to the human sacrifice to fashion for man the things of immortality even as they fashioned them for themselves. “He becomes full of plenitude and strength for the labour, he becomes a Rishi by power of self-expression, he becomes a hero and a smiter hard to pierce in the battles, he holds in himself increase of bliss and entire energy whom Vaja and Vibhwa, the Ribhus foster.... For you are seers and thinkers clear-discerning; as such with this thought of our soul we declare to you our knowledge. Do you in your knowledge moving about our thoughts fashion for us all human enjoyings,– luminous plenitude and fertilising force and supreme felicity. Here issue, here felicity, here a great energy of inspiration fashion for us in your delight. Give to us, O Ribhus, that richly-varied plenitude by which we shall awaken in our consciousness to things beyond ordinary men.”

 

1 Selected Hymns. XI. The Ribhus, Artisans of Immortality // CWSA.– Vol. 15.– The Secret of the Veda.– Pondicherry: Sri Aurobindo Ashram, 1998, pp. 336-342. 1-st published: Arya: A Philosophical Review. Monthly.– Vol.1, No 10 – May 1915, pp. 602-607.

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2 “Dhanwan” in this name does not mean “bow” but the solid or desert field of Matter otherwise typified as the hill or rock out of which the waters and the rays are delivered.

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3 4.36.3

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