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1. The great sages approached Manu, who was seated with a collected mind, and, having duly worshipped him, spoke as follows: 2. 'Deign, divine one, to declare to us precisely and in due order the sacred laws of each of the (four chief) castes (varna) and of the intermediate ones. 3. 'For thou, O Lord, alone knowest the purport, (i.e.) the rites, and the knowledge of the soul, (taught) in this whole ordinance of the Self-existent (Svayambhu), which is unknowable and unfathomable.' 4. He, whose power is measureless, being thus asked by the high-minded great sages, duly honoured them, and answered, 'Listen!' 5. This (universe) existed in the shape of Darkness, unperceived, destitute of distinctive marks, unattainable by reasoning, unknowable, wholly immersed, as it were, in deep sleep. 6. Then the divine Self-existent (Svayambhu, himself) indiscernible, (but) making (all) this, the great elements and the rest, discernible, appeared with irresistible (creative) power, dispelling the darkness. 7. He who can be perceived by the internal organ (alone), who is subtile, indiscernible, and eternal, who contains all created beings and is inconceivable, shone forth of his own (will). 8. He, desiring to produce beings of many kinds from his own body, first with a thought created the waters, and placed his seed in them. 9. That (seed) became a golden egg, in brilliancy equal to the sun; in that (egg) he himself was born as Brahman, the progenitor of the whole world. 10. The waters are called nârâh, (for) the waters are, indeed, the offspring of Nara; as they were his first residence (ayana), he thence is named Nârâyana. 11. From that (first) cause, which is indiscernible, eternal, and both real and unreal, was produced that male (Purusha), who is famed in this world (under the appellation of) Brahman. 12. The divine one resided in that egg during a whole year, then he himself by his thought (alone) divided it into two halves;
the five organs which perceive the objects of sensation. and the eternal sacrifice. plains. and anger. in their order. and. the perishable from the imperishable. (the body. which is both real and unreal. and he caused the creatures to be affected by the pairs (of opposites). 23. speech. But. 19. Moreover. and conditions to all (created beings). therefore the wise call his frame sarira. and the eternal abode of the waters. 21. and Sâman. he separated merit from demerit. likewise from the mind egoism. in order to distinguish actions. the soul. But from minute body(-framing) particles of these seven very powerful Purushas springs this (world). and all (products) affected by the three qualities. also created the class of the gods. actions. the eight points of the horizon. That the great elements enter. he created all beings. joining minute particles even of those six. together with their functions and the mind. with particles of himself.) 18. Among them each succeeding (element) acquires the quality of the preceding one. between them the middle sphere. But in the beginning he assigned their several names. Time and the divisions of time. enter (â-sri) these (creatures). who are endowed with life. 24. 25. the lunar mansions and the planets. 16. even so many qualities it is declared to possess. 26. Austerity. which possess measureless power. the great one. the oceans. and uneven ground. for the due performance of the sacrifice. which form the (creator's) frame.13. 15. as he desired to call these beings into existence. and the subtile class of the Sâdhyas. which possesses the function of self-consciousness (and is) lordly. Because those six (kinds of) minute particles. the mountains. pleasure. desire. From himself (âtmanah) he also drew forth the mind. even according to the words of the Veda. And out of those two halves he formed heaven and earth. the Lord. and whatever place (in the sequence) each of them occupies. He. wind. through its minute parts the framer of all beings. But from fire. Yagus. this whole creation he likewise produced. the imperishable one. and the sun he drew forth the threefold eternal Veda. 17. 27. 22. 14. called Rik. the rivers. But with the minute perishable particles of the five (elements) which have been . Moreover. 20. and whose nature is action. such as pain and pleasure.
imperfect (rohita) and perfect rainbows. 30. having performed austerities. his thighs. whom that male. 31. Apsarases (the dancers of the gods). comets. (the bird-deities called) Suparnas and the several classes of the manes. his arms. with that (female) he produced Virâg. But for the sake of the prosperity of the worlds he caused the Brahmana. cattle. desiring to produce created beings. lords of created beings. the Lord became half male and half female. 32. Whatever he assigned to each at the (first) creation. deer. and Nârada. 39 (Horse-faced) Kinnaras. 38. truth or falsehood. Kratu. lice. But to whatever course of action the Lord at first appointed each (kind of beings). the Kshatriya. Asuras. and the Sudra to proceed from his mouth. falling meteors. gentleness or ferocity. Dividing his own body. to be the creator of this whole (world). Marîki. Yakshas (the servants of Kubera. 37. and (thereby) called into existence ten great sages. 29. and his feet. Pulaha. Vasishtha. Lightnings. virtue or sin. O most holy among the twice-born. this whole (world) is framed in due order. gods and classes of gods and great sages of measureless power. all stinging and biting insects and the several kinds of immovable things. and carnivorous beasts with two rows of teeth. noxiousness or harmlessness. Then I. men. monkeys. (the snake-deities called) Nâgas and Sarpas. 35. They created seven other Manus possessing great brilliancy. Angiras. and heavenly lights of many kinds. bugs. fishes. . birds of many kinds. 36. 34. Pulastya. performed very difficult austerities. supernatural noises. that alone it has spontaneously adopted in each succeeding creation. Virâg. the Vaisya.mentioned. flies. But know me. even so corporeal beings (resume in new births) their (appointed) course of action. Praketas. moths. the demons called) Râkshasas and Pisâkas. Gandharvas (or musicians of the gods). Atri. himself produced. Small and large worms and beetles. thunderbolts and clouds. 40. As at the change of the seasons each season of its own accord assumes its distinctive marks. 28. that clung (afterwards) spontaneously to it. Bhrigu. 33.
desist from their actions and mind becomes inert. both the immovable and the movable. 52. annual plants (are those) which. From hot moisture spring stinging and biting insects. the corporeal beings whose nature is action. he disappeared in himself. deer. the climbing plants and the creepers spring all from seed or from slips. bugs. Thus was this whole (creation). possess internal consciousness and experience pleasure and pain. as well as similar terrestrial and aquatic (animals). 50. Râkshasas. free from all care and occupation. (Those trees) which bear fruit without flowers are called vanaspati (lords of the forest). fishes. (each being) according to (the results of) its actions. snakes. produced by those high-minded ones by means of austerities and at my command. All plants. lice. and all other (creatures) of that kind which are produced by heat. 51. From eggs are born birds. then he who is the soul of all beings sweetly slumbers. as well as their order in respect to birth. are stated to begin with (that of) Brahman. Cattle. then this world stirs. 45. repeatedly suppressing one period by means of the other. When this (soul) has entered darkness. 53. tortoises. the different kinds of grasses. and to end with (that of) these (just mentioned immovable creatures). 46. But the various plants with many stalks. had thus produced the universe and men.41. But whatever act is stated (to belong) to (each of) those creatures here below. that I will truly declare to you. propagated by seed or by slips. 43. flies. 55. grow from shoots. growing from one or several roots. When they are absorbed all at once in that great soul. carnivorous beasts with two rows of teeth. and men are born from the womb. 49. Pisâkas. perish after the ripening of their fruit. 44. When he whose power is incomprehensible. then the universe sinks to sleep. The (various) conditions in this always terrible and constantly changing circle of births and deaths to which created beings are subject. When that divine one wakes. 54. 47. 42. but those which bear both flowers and fruit are called vriksha. But when he reposes in calm sleep. These (plants) which are surrounded by multiform Darkness. when he slumbers tranquilly. crocodiles. the result of their acts (in former existences). bearing many flowers and fruits. 48. it remains for a long time united with the .
A month is a day and a night of the manes. 68. both human and divine. here. the night (being intended) for the repose of created beings and the day for exertion. being clothed with minute particles (only). it then assumes. thirty kâshthâs one kalâ. possessing great lustre. But he having composed these Institutes (of the sacred law). the descendant of the Self-existent (Svayambhu). the imperishable one. The dark (fortnight) is their day for active exertion. thirty kalâs one muhûrta. Raivata. These seven very glorious Manus. that during which it goes southwards the night. . Then that great sage Bhrigu. 58. 62. 67. being thus addressed by Manu. Kâkshusha. but the division is according to fortnights. to me alone in the beginning. are one kâshthâ). their division is (as follows): the half year during which the sun progresses to the north will be the day.organs (of sensation). When. 64. (Are) Svârokisha. the bright (fortnight) their night for sleep. very powerful Manus. each during the period (allotted to him). united (with the fine body). Auttami. who belong to the race of this Manu. and who have severally produced created beings. and as many (muhûrtas) one day and night. for that sage learned the whole in its entirety from me. A year is a day and a night of the gods. to all the sages. 63. produced and protected this whole movable and immovable (creation). 66. 57. Eighteen nimeshas (twinklings of the eye. Tâmasa. it enters into vegetable or animal seed. But hear now the brief (description of) the duration of a night and a day of Brahman and of the several ages (of the world. a (new) corporeal frame. spoke. 59. the first among whom is Svâyambhuva. 'Listen!' 61. Thus he. 60. it then leaves the corporeal frame. himself taught them. yuga) according to their order. 65. will fully recite to you these Institutes. The sun divides days and nights. by (alternately) waking and slumbering. but performs not its functions. Bhrigu. pleased in his heart. next I (taught them) to Marîki and the other sages. 56. Six other high-minded. according to the rule. and the son of Vivasvat. incessantly revivifies and destroys this whole movable and immovable (creation).
And from light. and that his night has the same length. the thousands and hundreds are diminished by one (in each). thence ether is produced. possessing the quality of taste. and the twilight following it of the same number. and through (the prevalence of) theft. nor does any gain accrue to men by unrighteousness. Those (only. being multiplied by seventy-one. awakes and. from water earth which has the quality of smell. performs the work of creation by modifying itself. modifying itself. The before-mentioned age of the gods. The Manvantaras. Brahman repeats this again and again. creates mind. who) know that the holy day of Brahman. 80. which illuminates and dispels darkness. (is produced) water. the twilight preceding it consists of as many hundreds. At the end of that day and night he who was asleep.69. the creations and destructions (of the world. indeed. (are really) men acquainted with (the length of) days and nights. 76. But from ether. impelled by (Brahman's) desire to create. They declare that the Krita age (consists of) four thousand years (of the gods). In the other three ages with their twilights preceding and following. Next from wind modifying itself. 78. 77. they declare that sound is the quality of the latter. powerful wind. and fraud the . Mind. (constitutes what) is here named the period of a Manu (Manvantara). sporting. springs the pure. 73. and (so is) Truth. These twelve thousand (years) which thus have been just mentioned as the total of four (human) ages. that is held to possess the quality of touch. ends after (the completion of) one thousand ages (of the gods) and that his night lasts as long. (or) twelve thousand (of their years). 70. are called one age of the gods. falsehood. the vehicle of all perfumes. 71. But know that the sum of one thousand ages of the gods (makes) one day of Brahman. 82. 81. In the Krita age Dharma is four-footed and entire. modifying itself. 74. which is both real and unreal. by reason of (unjust) gains (âgama). 79. proceeds the brilliant light. Dharma is deprived successively of one foot. 72. 75. are) numberless. as it were. In the other (three ages). such is the creation in the beginning. that is declared to possess the quality of colour. after awaking.
One occupation only the lord prescribed to the Sudra. to study (the Veda). (Men are) free from disease. The Kshatriya he commanded to protect the people. to offer sacrifices. In the Krita age the chief (virtue) is declared to be (the performance of) austerities. different ones in the Treta and in the Dvapara. For the Self-existent (Svayambhu). to trade. To Brahmanas he assigned teaching and studying (the Veda). to bestow gifts. 91. But in order to protect this universe He. through whose mouth the gods continually consume the sacrificial viands and the manes the offerings to the dead? . One set of duties (is prescribed) for men in the Krita age. in order that the offerings might be conveyed to the gods and manes and that this universe might be preserved. having performed austerities. in a proportion as (those) ages decrease in length. giving and accepting (of alms). What created being can surpass him. The Vaisya to tend cattle. as he was the first-born. and feet. and to cultivate land. The life of mortals. 85. 94. 87. in the Treta (divine) knowledge. the most resplendent one. accomplish all their aims. but in the Treta and (in each of) the succeeding (ages) their life is lessened by one quarter. 86.merit (gained by men) is diminished by one fourth (in each). hence the Self-existent (Svayambhu) has declared the purest (part) of him (to be) his mouth. thighs. 90. to serve meekly even these (other) three castes. 84. 95. As the Brahmana sprang from (Brahman's) mouth. in the Kali liberality alone. arms. to lend money. assigned separate (duties and) occupations to those who sprang from his mouth. in the Dvapara (the performance of) sacrifices. 92. 83. and as he possesses the Veda. to study (the Veda). the desired results of sacrificial rites and the (supernatural) power of embodied (spirits) are fruits proportioned among men according to (the character of) the age. to bestow gifts. 88. to offer sacrifices. produced him first from his own mouth. Man is stated to be purer above the navel (than below). and live four hundred years in the Krita age. and (again) another (set) in the Kali. and to abstain from attaching himself to sensual pleasures. sacrificing for their own benefit and for others. mentioned in the Veda. 89. 93. he is by right the lord of this whole creation.
hence a twice-born man who possesses regard for himself. for the protection of the treasury of the law. He sanctifies any company (which he may enter). and becomes one with Brahman. 97. and of men.96. mankind. 107. 105. 108. and he must duly instruct his pupils in them. of the intelligent. on account of the excellence of his origin The Brahmana is. 106. In order to clearly settle his duties those of the other (castes) according to their order. of the animated. of those who possess this knowledge. it (leads to) supreme bliss. it increases understanding. is never tainted by sins. those who know the Brahman. 102. The rule of conduct is transcendent law. should be always careful to (follow) it. for he is born to (fulfil) the sacred law. 104. bestows but his own in alms. it procures fame and long life. seven ancestors and seven descendants. (To study) this (work) is the best means of securing welfare. A Brahmana. is born as the highest on earth. the Brahmanas. entitled to all. wise Manu sprung from the Self-existent. composed these Institutes (of the sacred Law). 101. of the learned. and he alone deserves (to possess) this whole earth. but nobody else (shall do it). of the performers. the property of the Brahmana. The very birth of a Brahmana is an eternal incarnation of the sacred law. those which subsist by intelligence. A Brahmana who studies these Institutes (and) faithfully fulfils the duties (prescribed therein). indeed. (to be followed) by all the four castes (varna). arising from thoughts. 99. coming into existence. 98. In this (work) the sacred law has been fully stated as well as the good and bad qualities of (human) actions and the immemorial rule of conduct. whether it be taught in the revealed texts or in the sacred tradition. . The Brahmana eats but his own food. those learned (in the Veda). Of Brahmanas. 100. Of created beings the most excellent are said to be those which are animated. Whatever exists in the world is. wears but his own apparel. 103. A learned Brahmana must carefully study them. those who perform them. words. those who recognise (the necessity and the manner of performing the prescribed duties). or deeds. the lord of all created beings. other mortals subsist through the benevolence of the Brahmana.
The threefold course of transmigrations. 110. in reply to my questions. formerly promulgated these Institutes. the most excellent rule of bathing (on return from the teacher's house). 1-28. The rules for the examination of witnesses. the result of (good or bad) actions. the whole duty of a king and the manner of deciding lawsuits. (the manner of attaining) supreme bliss and the examination of the good and bad qualities of actions. Translated by G. (the manner of gaining) final emancipation and (of) renouncing the world. The sages who saw that the sacred law is thus grounded on the rule of conduct. The primeval laws of countries. From: The Laws of Manu. 116.109. will obtain the full reward. and the rules concerning heretics and companies (of traders and the like)--(all that) Manu has declared in these Institutes. 113. Max Müller. the rule of the sacraments. 117. The creation of the universe. Bühler. 114. the law for all castes in times of distress and the law of penances. the laws concerning husband and wife. 1886. (The law of) marriage and the description of the (various) marriage-rites. Oxford: Clarendon Press. F. the purification of men and of things. The laws concerning women. and the respectful behaviour (towards Gurus). the origin of the mixed castes. of families. (the rules regarding) lawful and forbidden food. does not reap the fruit of the Veda. 111. XXV of The Sacred Books of the East. As Manu. Vol. 112. (the law) of hermits. the law of (inheritance and) division. but he who duly follows it. The description of the modes of (gaining) subsistence and the duties of a Snataka. editor. 115. (the law concerning) gambling and the removal of (men nocuous like) thorns. have taken good conduct to be the most excellent root of all austerity. A Brahmana who departs from the rule of conduct. the ordinances of studentship. of castes (gati). (The law concerning) the behaviour of Vaisyas and Sudras. 118. . the regulations for the great sacrifices and the eternal rule of the funeral sacrifices. even so learn ye also the (whole work) from me. 119.
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