स होवाचाजातशत्रुः, प्रतिलोमं चैतद्यद्ब्राह्मनः क्षत्रियमुपेयात्, ब्रह्म मे वक्ष्यतीति, व्येव त्वा ज्ञपयिष्यामीति; तं पानावादयोत्तस्थौ, तौ ह पुरुषं सुप्तमाजग्मतुः, तमेतैर्नामभिरामन्त्रयांचक्रे, बृहन् पाण्डरवासः सोम राजन्निति; स नोत्तस्थौ, तं पाणिनाऽऽपेषम् बोधयांचकार, स होत्तस्थौ ॥ १५ ॥
sa hovācājātaśatruḥ, pratilomaṃ caitadyadbrāhmanaḥ kṣatriyamupeyāt, brahma me vakṣyatīti, vyeva tvā jñapayiṣyāmīti; taṃ pānāvādayottasthau, tau ha puruṣaṃ suptamājagmatuḥ, tametairnāmabhirāmantrayāṃcakre, bṛhan pāṇḍaravāsaḥ soma rājanniti; sa nottasthau, taṃ pāṇinā”peṣam bodhayāṃcakāra, sa hottasthau || 15 ||
15. Ajātaśatru said, ‘It is contrary to usage that a Brāhmaṇa should approach a Kṣatriya thinking, “He will teach me about Brahman.” However I will instruct you.’ Taking Gārgya by the hand he rose. They came to a sleeping man. (Ajātaśatru) addressed him by these names, ‘Great, White-robed, Radiant, Soma.’ The man did not get up. (The King) pushed him with the hand till he awoke. Then he got up.
Ajātaśatru said: It is contrary to usage —what is so?—that a Brāhmaṇa, who comes of a superior caste qualified to be a teacher, should approach a Kṣatriya, who is by custom not a teacher, in the role of a student, with a view to receiving instruction from him about Brahman. This is forbidden in the scriptures laying down rules of conduct. Therefore remain as a teacher; I will anyway instruct you about the true Brahman which should be known, knowing which one can claim to have a knowledge of Brahman.
Seeing Gārgya abashed, in order to set him at ease, he took him by the hand and rose. They, Gārgya and Ajātaśatru, came to a man who was asleep in a certain part of the palace. Coming to him he addressed the sleeping man by these names, ‘Great, White-robed, Radiant, Soma.’ Even though thus addressed, the sleeping man did not get up. Finding he did not awake, (the King) pushed him again and again with the hand till he awoke. Then he got up. From this it was evident that the being whom Gārgya wanted to convey was not Brahman, the agent and experiencer in this body.
Objection: How do you know that the act of going to the sleeping man, calling him and his not getting up indicate that the Brahman advocated by Gārgya is not (the true) Brahman?
Reply: In the waking state, as the being whorrf Gārgya put forward as Brahman, the agent and experiencer, is in touch with the organs, so is the being put forward by Ajātaśatru— who is the master of the other being—in touch with them, as a king is with his servants. But the grounds of ascertaining the difference between the two beings put forward by Gārgya and Ajātaṣatru, that stand in the relation of servant and master respectively, cannot be discriminated, because they are then mixed up. That is to say, the experiencer is the seer or subject, and not an object, and that which is not the experiencer is an object, and not the subject; but these two, being mixed up in the waking state, cannot be shown separately. Hence their going to a sleeping man.
Objection: Even in the sleeping man there is nothing to determine that when addressed by special names, only the experiencer will perceive, and not the non-experiencer.
Reply: Not so, for the characteristics of the being whom Gārgya means are well-defined. That vital force which is covered by ‘truth’ (name and form constituting the gross body), which is the self (the subtle body) and immortal, which does not set when the organs have set (are inactive), whose body is water, which is white-robed, great, on account of being without a rival, and is the radiant Soma consisting of sixteen digits—that vital force remains just as it is known to be, doing its function, with its (active) nature intact. Nor does Gārgya mean that any other agency contrary to the vital force is active at that time. Hence it should know when called by its own names; but it did not. Therefore by the principle of the residuum the Brahman meant by Gārgya is proved not to be the experiencer.
If the Brahman meant by Gārgya were the experiencer by its very nature, it would perceive objects whenever it came in contact with them. For instance, ñre, whose nature it is to burn and illumine, must always burn any combustible it gets, such as straw or tender grass, and also illumine things. If it does not, we cannot assert that fire burns or illumines. Likewise, if the vital force advocated by Gārgya were by nature such that it would perceive sound and other objects that came within its range, it would perceive the words ‘Great, White-robed.’ etc., which are appropriate objects for it; just as fire invariably burns and illumines straw, tender grass, etc., that come in contact with it. Therefore, since it did not perceive sound etc. coming within its range, we conclude that it is not by nature an experiencer; for a thing can never change its nature. Therefore it is conclusively proved that the vital force is not the experiencer.
Objection: May not the non-perception be due to its failure to associate the particular names by which it was addressed with itself? It may be like this: As when one out of a number of persons sitting together is addressed, he mav hear, but may not particularly understand that it is he who is being called, because of his failure to associate his particular name with himself, similarly the vital force does not perceive the words addressed to it, because it fails to understand that the names such as ‘Great’ are its own and to associate them with itself, and not because it is other than the knower.
Reply: Not so, for when the vital force is admitted to be a deity, the non-association in question is impossible. In other words, one who admits that the deity identifying himself with the moon etc. is the vital force in the body, and is the experiencer (self), must also admit, for the sake of intercourse with him. that he associates himself with his particular names. Otherwise no intercourse with him will be possible in the acts of invocation etc.
Objection: The objection is not proper, since according to the view that makes the experiencer (seif) other than the vital force, there is a similar non-perception. In other words, one who posits a different experiencer from the vital force must admit that it too, when called by such names as ‘Great,’ should hear them, because those names then apply to it. But we never see it do this when called by those names. Therefore the fact that the vital force fails to hear the call is no proof that it is not the experiencer.
Reply: Not so, for that which possesses something as a part of it cannot identify itself with only that much. According to the view that holds the experiencer to be other than the vital force, the latter is one of its instruments, and it is the possessor of them. It does not identify itself with only the deity of the vital force, as one does not with one’s hand. Therefore it is quite reasonable that the experiencer, identifying itself with the whole, does not hear when addressed by the names of the vital force. Not so, however, with the latter when it is addressed by its special names. Besides, the self does not identify itself with just a deity.
Objection: Such a view is untenable, because we sometimes see that the self does not hear even when called by its own name. For instance, when a man is îast asleep, he does not sometimes hear even when called by his conventional name, say Devadatta. Similarly the vital force, although it is the experiencer, does not hear.
Reply: Not so, for there is this difference between the self and the vital force that the former sleeps, but the latter does not. When the self is asleep, its organs do not function, being absorbed in the vital force. So it does not hear even when its own name is called. But if the vital force were the experiencer, its organs should never cease to function, nor should it fail to hear the call, since it is ever awake.
Objection: It was not proper to call it by its unfamiliar names. There are many familiar names denoting the vital force, such as Prāṇa. Leaving them aside, to call it by unfamiliar names such as ‘Great’ was not proper, for it is against convention. Therefore we maintain that although it failed to hear, the vital force is the experiencer.
Reply: No, for the purpose of using those unfamiliar names was to refute the contention that the deity of the moon is the experiencer. To be explicit: That the vital force which is in this body and ever awake is not the experiencer, has already been proved simply by its failure to hear the call. But names denoting the deity of the moon were addressed to it to disprove Gārgya’s contention that the vital force, which is the same as the deity of the moon, is the experiencer in this body. This purpose could not be served if the vital force were addressed by its popular names. By the refutation of the vital force the contention that any other organ is the experiencer is also refuted, because no organ can function at that time, all being absorbed in the vital force. (And no other deity can be the experiencer), for there is no such deity.
Objection: There is, for a number of gods with particular attributes have been mentioned in the portion beginning with ‘All-surpassing’ and ending with ‘Self-possessed.’
Reply: Not so, for all the Śrutis admit them to be unified in the vital force, as in the illustration of the spokes and nave. Moreover, in the passages, ‘Covered by truth’ (I. vi. 3), and ‘The vital force is the immortal entity’ (Ibid.), no other experiencer besides the vital force is admitted. Also, in the passages, ‘This indeed is all the gods’ (I. iv. 6), and ‘Which is that one god? The vital force’ (III. ix. 9), all the gods have been shown to be unified in the vital force.
Similarly none of the organs can be put forward as the experiencer; for in that case it would be impossible to connect memory, perception, wish, etc. in the same subject, as in the case of different bodies. What one person has seen another cannot recollect, or perceive, or wish, or recognise. Therefore none of the organs can by any means be the experiencer. Nor can mere (momentary) consciousness be such.
Objection: Why not take the body itself to be the experiencer, why imagine something over and above it?
Reply: That cannot be, for we notice a difference made by the pushing. If this aggregate of body and organs were the experiencer, then, since this aggregate ever remains the same, pushing or not pushing would not make any difference as regards awaking. If, however, something other than the body were the experiencer, then, since it has different kinds of relation to the body, and may presumably get pleasure, pain or stupor as the varied result of its past actions, according as they were good, indifferent, or bad, there would naturally be a difference in the perception due to pushing or not pushing. But were the body itself the experiencer, there should not be any difference, since differences concerning relation and the result of past actions would be out of place in that case. Nor should there be any difference due to the strength or feebleness of the sound, touch, etc. But there is this difference, since Ajātaśatru roused the sleeping man, whom a mere touch could not awaken, by repeatedly pushing him with the hand. Therefore it is proved that that which awoke through pushing—blazing forth, as it were, flashing, as it were, and come from somewhere, as it were, rendering the body different from what it was, endowing it with consciousness, activity, a different look, etc.— is an entity other than the body and different from the types of Brahman advocated by Gārgya.
Moreover the vital force, being a compound, must be for the benefit of some other entity. We have already said that it, like the post etc. of a house, is the internal supporter of the body and is combined with the body etc. It is also as a felloe is to the spokes. And in it, which is comparable to a nave, everything is fixed. Therefore we understand that like a house etc. it has been compounded for the benefit of some entity categorically different from its parts as also the aggregate. We see that the parts of a house such as posts, walls, straw and wood, as also the house itself, subserve the purpose of a person who sees, hears, thinks and knows them, and whose existence and manifestation are independent of the birth, growth, decay, death, name, form, effect and other attributes of those things. From this we infer that the parts of the vital force etc. as also.the aggregates must subserve the purpose of some entity that sees, hears, thinks and knows them, and whose existence and manifestation are independent of the birth, growth, etc. of those things.
Objection: But since the deity (called the vital force) is conscious, it is equal in status (to the self); so how can it be subordinate (to the other)? That the vital force is conscious has already been admitted when we see it addressed by particular names. And since it is conscious, it cannot subserve the purpose of another, for it is equal in status.
Reply: Not so, for the instruction that is sought to be conveyed is about the unconditioned, absolute Brahman. That the self identifies itself with action, its factors and its results, is due to the limitations of name and form and is superimposed by ignorance. It is this that causes people to come under relative existence, consisting in their identification with action and the rest. This has to be removed by a knowledge of the real nature of the unconditioned Self. Hence to teach about that this Upaniṣad (from this chapter) has been begun. For instance, it opens with, T will tell you about Brahman’ (II. i. 1), and ‘By knowing this much one cannot know (Brahman)’ (II. i. 14) aṇḍ concludes with, ‘This much indeed is (the means of) immortality, my dear’ (IV. v. 15). And nothing else is either meant to be taught or expressed in between. Therefore there is no scope for the objection that one cannot be subordinate to the other, being equal in status.
The relation of principal and subordinate is only for the dealing of the differentiated or conditioned Brahman, and not the opposite One; whereas the whole Upaniṣad seeks to teach about the unconditioned Brahman, for it concludes with, ‘This (self) is That which has been described as “Not this, not this,” ‘ etc. (III. ix. 26; IV. ii. 4; IV. iv. 22; IV. v. 15). Therefore it is proved that there is a conscious Brahman other than and different from these types of unconscious Brahman.