VEDIC REQUIREMENTS FOR THE SACRIFICIAL PURUSHA

The Rig Veda specifies ten important requirements for the sacrificial Purusha.

1.  SHOULD  BE  WITHOUT   BLEMISH (NISHKALANGA PURUSHA):

       Kaatyaayana Srautasootram describes in chapter six, that water and fire were to be used for the purification of the animals since blameless animals are not available in this world. Chantokia Upanishad (1.6-6.7) says, the yagna Purusha is free from all sins.

2.  THE PURUSHA HAS TO BE SEPARATED FROM OTHERS:

       While sacrificing the horse, the sacrificial horse is always separated from other horses.  A bush of thorns is usually placed on the head of the horse to inform the people that this horse is separated for the sacrifice. Also the head of the horse is considered to represent the Purusha (Sathapatha Brahmana 13th kanda, 6.2.2). 

3.  THE PURUSHA HAS TO BE REJECTED BY HIS OWN PEOPLE:

         In Itareya Brahmana it is written that the sacrificial animal should be rejected by its father, mother, brother, sister and friends (2.16).

4.  THE YAGNA PURUSHA HAS TO SUFFER SILENTLY:

          Rig Veda 5.46.1 says, Like a horse I have yoked myself, well knowing to the pole.  I seek neither release nor turning back”.

5.  THE PURUSHA HAS TO BE TIED TO A POST:

         In Satapata Brahmana it is written, never do they immolate an animal without tying it to a pole. Na varute yapaat pasum alabhate kadachana (III-7.3.1)”.  It is important to tie the animal to a sacrificial pillar before it is sacrificed.  This pillar is called “Yupastamba (sacrificial pillar)”, which has now become a flag mast.

6.  THE BLOOD OF THE SACRIFICIAL PURUSHA SHOULD BE SHED:

        Bruhad Aranyaka Upanishad ( 3.9.28.2) says,Tvacha evasya rudhiram, prasyandi tvacha utpatah, Tasmaattadarunnaat praiti, raso vrukshadi vahataat “.  As the sap comes out of the cut tree, blood comes out of the Purusha who is cut.

7.  THE SACRIFICED ANIMAL’S BONES SHOULD NOT BE BROKEN:

           In Itareya Brahmana 2.6 it is stated that the sacrificer separates the twenty-six ribs of the animal without breaking them.

8.  THE SACRIFICED PURUSHA SHOULD RETURN TO LIFE:

           The Bruhad Aranyaka Upanishad says,          

“Yad Vruksho vrukshano rohati, mulannavatharah punah, martyah svinmrutyuna vruknah, kasmaanmulaat prarohati, Retasa iti maavocata, jivatastat praja yate, dhanaruh a iva vai crau vruksho, anjasaa pretya sammbhavha”, which means, if the tree is cut, it will grow again from its root.  But after the man  (martyah) was cut off by death, from which root does he come forth? Do not say that he is from the ratas (seed or semen) because ratas comes from the one who lives. Remember this man is dead. But this man (Purusha) comes alive, on his own.

9.  THE  FLESH  OF  THE  PURUSHA  SHOULD  BE  EATEN  BY  HIS  SAINTS:

            In Satpata Brahmana (5.1.1.1,2) we find that Prajapati gave Himself up to them, thus the sacrifice became theirs, and indeed the sacrifice is the food of the gods (saints).

10. THE SACRIFICE IS FOR ALL:  

            Verse 8 in Purusha Sukta explains, Tasmaad yagnatsarvahutah, pasuntamscakre voayaryaa, naananyaan gramyaasca ye. By that sacrifice, Purusha offered everything he had. All kinds of animals of the sky, forest and country including sprinkled ghee originated. This sprinkled ghee which is used for yagna represents the original sacrifice. 

            Verse 9 of Purusha Sukta says: Tasmaad yagnat sarvahuta, nucha samaari jagnire, Chandaamsi jagnine, tasmaad yajustas naada jaayatah. Through that sacrifice, Purusha  offered everything that he had, including the Rig, Sama, Yazur Vedas and the Chandas (sacred writings).

 

 

Written by The word of Truth 

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