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Brahma Sutras
by Swami Sivananda


Section 3: Introduction

In the last Section texts of doubtful import were interpreted to refer to Brahman. Some other expressions prescribed for divine contemplation in different Srutis, not already discussed in Section 2 are now taken up for discussion to prove that they all indicate the same Infinite Brahman.

In the First Section of the First Chapter the author (Sutrakara) took up the terms which referred to themanifested world such as Akasa (ether), Prana (energy),Jyoti (light) and showed that they really refer toBrahman. In the Second Section the author took upthe terms which referred to the human body and showedthat they refer to Brahman. The Section referredto the Saguna aspect of Brahman. The Third Section refers to the Nirguna aspect of Brahman. Here the subject of discussion is to Para Brahman or the Supreme Nirguna Brahman.


Some other passages prescribed for meditation in different Srutis, not already discussed in Section-2 are now taken up for discussion to prove that they all indicate the same Infinite, Satchidananda, all-pervading, eternal, Immortal Brahman.

Adhikarana I:

(Sutras 1-7) proves that that within which the heaven, the earth etc., are woven (Mun. Up. II-2-5) is Brahman.

Adhikarana II:

(Sutras 8-9) shows that the Bhuma referred to in Chh. Up. VII-23 is Brahman.

Adhikarana III:

(Sutras 10-12) teaches that the Akshara (the Imperishable one) of Bri. Up. III-8-8 in which the ether is woven is Brahman.

Adhikarana IV:

(Sutra 13) decides that the Highest Person who is to be meditated upon with the syllable OM according to Prasna Up. V-5 is not the lower but the higher Brahman.

Adhikarana V:

(Sutras 14-21) shows that the small ether (Daharakasa) within the lotus of the heart mentioned in Chh. Up. VIII-1 is Brahman.

Adhikarana VI:

(Sutras 22-23) proves that he after whom everything shines, by whose light all this is lighted – Katha Up. II-2-15 – is not some material luminous body, but Brahman itself.

Adhikarana VII:

(Sutras 24-25) decides that the person of the size of a thumb mentioned in Katha Up. II-1-12 is not the individual soul but Brahman.

Adhikarana VIII:

(Sutras 26-33) The next two Adhikaranas are of the nature of a digression. They raise a side issue and decide that deities are equally entitled to practise Brahma Vidya as prescribed in the Vedas. Sutras 29 and 30 establish the conclusion that the Vedas are eternal.

Adhikarana IX:

(Sutras 34-38) explains that Sudras are altogether not entitled for Brahma Vidya.

Adhikarana X:

(Sutra 39) proves that the Prana in which everything trembles according to Katha Up. II-3-2 is Brahman.

Adhikarana XI:

(Sutra 40) proves that the 'light' (Jyoti) mentioned in Chh. Up. VIII-12-3 is the Highest Brahman.

Adhikarana XII:

(Sutra 41) decides that the ether which reveals names and forms (Chh. Up. VIII-14) is not the elemental ether but Brahman.

Adhikarana XIII:

(Sutras 42-43) teaches that the Vijnanamaya – he who consists of knowledge of Bri. Up. IV-3-7 is not the individual soul but Brahman.