[Advaita-l] Part 2...In Rig-veda Agni Deva, the Fire, is Brahman

sidha at omkarananda-ashram.org sidha at omkarananda-ashram.org
Mon Feb 7 12:40:08 CST 2005

In Rig-veda Agni Deva, the Fire, is Brahman (Part 2)

>>>>>Agni is also called Jaathavedah.

Jaatavedas in the Veda means "one who knows all that have come into
existence". Agni is called so because he lies in every womb giving birth
to every creature. Isn't it the warmth and heat of the mother, from which
the child gets nourished. Even the egg needs heat to develop. Agni Deva is
doing its work for every creature to be born, this is what is meant by

>>>>>>>>>>Jaathavedasi is Durga. “Jaathavedase sunavaama somam”. She is
the nectar or the Water.

Durgaa has nowhere in the Samhita parts of the Veda mentioned as a
goddess. That is a later pauranic development of Maayaa. The term
Jaatavedasi doesn't even exist in Vedic literature according to my
knowledge. I doubt if it exists anywhere else. It would be a great help to
me if you could point out any reference. I haven't come across any such
reference in the past 20 years, since I have been studying Sanskrit. In
the mantra that you have quoted, it is only the 4th case of "jaatavedas",
i.e. we bow down to Jatavedas, the fire.
Even in the following Mantra "taam agnivarnaam tapasaa" etc. Durga has
been mentioned as being radiant and burning like the fire, which rules out
the possibility of its meaning "water". However, this is the only place
where she has been mentioned, in the last part of the Taittiriya Aranyaka,
in it "Khila", which is like an appendix. The Aranyaka itself is the last
part of the Taiitiriya Brahmana, which in turn is the last part of
Taittiriya Samhita. Sayana clearly indicates here in the commentary that
Durga has been only mentioned in the Kalpa Sutras apart from here. She is
not at all a Vedic goddess. The rest Mantras of the Sukta are only praises
to Agni, nothing to do with Durga. Just the word occurs, that too in
neutral gender, nothing to do with Goddess Durga.

>>>>>>>>Both these water and Fire are an inseparable duel like Siva and

I'm sorry but I'm really unable to understand what you mean by this? And
have you come to this conclusion? Is there any such statement that has led
you to this conclusion?

>>>>>>>> “Apsu jyothih pratishthitam” “ “JyoteenShyaapah pratisthithaah”,
“Adhbhyo agnih”.

The first two quotations are from the Taitttiriya 3-8. I would like to
have a clear reference to the third one, since I think that quotation is
"agneraapah. adbhyah prithivii" (Taittiriya 2-1).
The first two quotation simply say that there is fire is established in
the waters (one can see that in the clouds) and there is water in the
fire. H2O = water. Hydrogen is highly flammable, and also oxygen is a must
for combustion. However, the context there in the Upanishad is that "water
is the food, and fire is the one who eats the food", this is how they are
mutually existing within each other. There are two more such similar
examples in that context, Prana exists in the body and body exists in the
Prana, i.e. body is depended on the Prana; or the earth is existing in the
ether, i.e. it is the ether that is bearing the earth, and the ether is
existing in the earth. What is meant is that in a similar way "water
exists in the fire" since fire is the cause of water, and "fire exists in
the water" in the same way like clay exists in a clay-pot.
Traditional scholars like Sayana comment upon it in a different way. He
says, "fire is existing in the water, because we see fire in the form of
thunderbolt in the waters of the clouds. And water is existing in the
fire, because we see that when the body is heated, it starts to perspire".
One thing is for sure, that this shruti doesn't in any way proof that
water and fire are inseparable duel or something like that. That is a very
different context.

>>>>>We cant say which is first in the evolution.

It is clear from the correct third quotation that fire comes first
according to the Srishtikrama of the Upanishads, accepted by all
philosophers and water comes after fire.

>>>>>>>>“Yopaamaayatanam veda aayatanavaan bhavathi
agnirva apaamaayatanam aayathanavaan bhavathi
yo agneraayathanam veda aayathanavaan bhavathi
aapova agneraayathanam aayathanavan bhavathi
ya evam veda||”

Sayana explains this thus: The cause of the waters is the fire, that is
why they are established in the fire. However, since the entire creation
is said be existing in the beginning in the form of "apas" or "salila"
which is a mixture of all objects, also translated as a sort of water, but
indeed not the physical water, here the term "water" just has been used to
denote a particular type of mixture. In which even the fire is existing.
This is a very deep science, which has to be understood deeply and
mystically. Only then all this can be understood. If you are interested,
in further understanding of this quotation according to Shvetashvatara
etc. please let me know, I would search you out all the needed quotations
to make my point clear. They are just not popping up into my mind right

>>>>>>>“Ashrutaa sashrutaa sascha yajwaano ye apyajwanah
swaryantho naapyapekshatha indramagnincha ye viduh
sikathaa iva samyanthi rasmibhih samudeerithaa
asmaallokaadamusha chyetyapahaarunikee srutih||”
We have to meditate upon both the agni and water together in a combined
form and not separately. Here Indra means the lord of waters. If you say
Agni is Brahma, it can not be the truth.

Please give clear references to the above quotation. Since I have mainly
focused my studies on the Rig-veda, I'm unable to locate the above
quotation. I'm unable to comment until I don't see the context. Indra
nowhere in the Veda is the lord of waters. That is again a later Pauranic
development, totally not heard about in the Vedas. If at all, but that too
only to some extent, the God of waters is "Varuna". Indra and Agni have
been glorified in a combined form in a very few Suktas in the Rig-veda.
All other Suktas glorify them differently.

>>>>>>>>In the same way, the Sun god also cannot be considered as Brahma.
The Sun is not a reality at all.

There are so many Surya Suktas in the Rig-veda.

>>>>>>> It is the admixture of ”agneeshomathmakam” and having no
individuality at all.

Please give a clear reference stating that!

>>>>>>>The golden coloured rays of the Agni (having the nature of rising
upwards) while ascending towards the moon, and the white silvery
rays of the moon decending downwards, both met and mixed up in the
Chathurdasa bhuvanaatmaka chaturdasaara chakra and formed as a
round circle there.

Any Vedic proof?

>>>>>>It is described in sreesuuktha as “Suvarna rajatha srajaam”.

That is a description of Lakshmi. Nothing to do with all the stuff you
have mentioned in the above paragraph.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Just as the universe of the fourteen worlds is considered
as Midhyaa, this Sun also should be considered as Midhya.

It is, eventually everything is Mithya. Even the Ishvara in Vedanta is
Mithya. When there is no creation, there can be no creator. But still we
say that Ishvara is Sopadhika Brahman. It is the same with the Sun. It is
a manifestation, but what I mean to say is that in many places in the
Rig-veda that Supreme God has been praised by calling it "Sun". I don't
mean to say that this physical sun that is visible to our eyes, is
Brahman. This is just a manifestation.

>>>>>>>>>>>Have you ever seen any authority in vedaas that the rays of the
sun going to the moon? The vedaas recognized the moon only as
Swayamprakasaka. And not the Sun god at all. The Sun represents
the universe which is Jada, cannot be equelled with the

A total misunderstanding. Please read the following words from an article
by me recently published in a magazine.
"One particular ray of Surya Bhagavan (the Sun) has been mentioned in the
Shukla Yajur Veda 18-40, called "SushumNa", i.e. great bliss ("sushumNaH
sushThusukhah" as Acarya Durga, the commentator of the Nirukta interprets
it in Sanskrit). This particular ray is said to give light to the moon,
clearly indicating that Vedic Seers knew very well that the light seen in
the moon, is not its own, but it simply reflects the light of the Sun.
That is why one of the name of the moon in the Veda is "Gandharva", i.e.
the bearer of a ray (from the Sun)."

In the end, before concluding I would like to thank you very much for
taking the pains to consider my exhaustive article. I thank you very much
and would feel very sorry if I heart anybody's feelings with this
free-minded article. This is just for a better understanding of the
scripture. I could be totally wrong, but this was what seemed correct to
With all my Love and respect, Pranams to you, and thank you very much once
Siddhartha Krishna

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