The ŚIKSHĀ–PATRĪ of the Swāmi–Nārāyaṇa Sect

Translation by

 Professor Monier Williams (12 November 1819 – 11 April 1899)

ŚIKSHĀ– PATRĪ = Instruction Manual
The Project Gutenberg EBook

JOURNAL OF THE ROYAL ASIATIC SOCIETY. [New Series, Volume XIV] [London, Trübner and Company] [1882]
Presentation by Veeraswamy Krishnaraj with currently used diacritics.

1.  I meditate in my heart on that Kṛṣṇa on whose left side     is seated Rādhā, on whose breast reclines 
Ś (Lakshmī), and who enjoyed sport (with them) in Vṛindāvana.
2.  I, Sahajānanda.h Svāmī (afterwards called Svāmī–Nārāyaṇa), living at V
ittālaya, write this Letter of instructions (or Book of directions) to all my followers scattered throughout various countries.

3.  Let the two youths named Ayodhyā–prasāda and Raghu–vīra, the sons of my two brothers, Rāma–pratāpa and Iććhārāma, who were the children of Dharma (or Hari–prasāda);

4.  And let those Naishṭhika Brahmaćārīs (that is to say, those Brahmans who continue Brahmaćārīs or celibates all their lives), the chief among whom is Mukundānanda, and those Gṛihasthas (householders), such as Mayārāma–Bhaṭṭa, and other of my followers;

5. And let those women, whether wives or widows, who have become my disciples, and the whole number of holy men (Sādhus), such as Muktānanda and others;

6. Let all these (persons) constantly give heed to my prayers for their perpetual continuance in their own proper duties––(my prayers) offered up with repetition of the name Kṛṣṇa (Nārāyaṇa), and in accordance with the sacred scriptures. (Literally––Let my benedictory words which keep them in their own duties be always read by all these persons accompanied by repetition of the name of Kṛṣṇa, and approved by the Śāstras.)

7. Let this Letter of directions, which has important objects (to be hereafter enumerated), and which promotes the welfare of all living beings, be studied with perfect concentration of mind by all these (persons).

8. Those (virtuous) persons who conform to the good usages enjoined by the sacred Śāstras will always enjoy great happiness both in this world and in that which is to come.

9. But those evil–minded persons who wilfully transgress such (good usages) will certainly suffer great misery in this world as well as in the next.

10. Therefore let all of you who are my disciples always remain careful and well–contented in the observance of this (Book of directions).

11. Let no followers of mine ever intentionally kill any living thing whatever––not even a louse, flea, or the most minute insect.

12. The killing of any animal such as a goat, etc., for the purpose of sacrificing to the Gods and Pitṛis, must not be practised; because it is declared, that abstinence from injury to others is the highest of all duties.

13. The killing of any human being in any way, at any place, for any object, (even) for the sake of acquiring a wife, wealth, or political supremacy, is wholly prohibited.

14. Suicide at a sacred place of pilgrimage, or from passion, either by hanging, or by poison in consequence of the commission of a criminal act [Footnote: A father sometimes kills himself because a criminal act has been committed by a member of his family], is prohibited.

15. Flesh meat should never be eaten, not even that which remains of a sacrifice. Spirituous liquor of any kind should never be drunk, not even that presented to the Gods.

16. If an unlawful act has been committed anywhere by one's self or any other person, no member either of one's own or any other person's body should be on that account mutilated with a weapon of any kind through anger.

17. All theft is prohibited, even that which is committed under pretense of contributing to religious purposes; nor must such things as wood and flowers that have an owner ever be abstracted without his permission.

18. Let no male or female followers of mine ever commit adultery. Let them shun gaming and similar vices, and abstain from all intoxicating liquors and substances such as hemp, etc.

19. Nowhere––except in Jagannāthapurī––let a man accept water or food which has been cooked by one from whom food is not to be taken (__i.e.__ from a person of low caste), even though that food may have formed the Prasāda [Footnote: By Prasāda is meant the remains of food presented as an offering to a god. Here the word must be either prasādī or prasādi, from prasādin] of Kṛṣṇa (that is, the remains of what has been presented as an offering to Kṛṣṇa).

20. No calumnious language must be used against any one for the sake of promoting one's own interests. No abusive words must ever be spoken.

21. Never use nor listen to profane language against the Gods, sacred places, Brāhmans, holy women, Sādhus and the Vedas.

22. The remains of the offering to that Goddess to whom flesh and liquor are offered and in whose presence the killing of goats, etc., takes place, are not to be eaten.

23. If you happen on the road to see before you a temple of Śiva or any other God, having first made a salutation, respectfully enter inside to view the image.

24. Let no one abandon the duties of the class and order to which he belongs, nor practice the religious duties of others; nor have anything to do with those propounded by heretical teachers.

25. The narrative of the exploits of the Lord Kṛṣṇa should not be heard from the mouth of any person whose words lead one to fall from his worship or from duty.

26. Never tell a truth which is likely to cause serious injury to yourself or to anyone else. Avoid associating with ungrateful persons. Never accept a bribe from any person whatever.

27. Never associate with thieves, wicked or vicious persons, heretics, people who are in love, and people who are engaged in dishonest occupations.

28. Never associate with those who, through eager desire to obtain a wife, wealth or some sensual gratification, practice sinful acts under pretext of devotion to religion or to sacred knowledge.

29. Never pay attention to those books in which Kṛṣṇa and his incarnations are impugned by controversial arguments.

30. No unstrained water or milk should be drunk, nor should water containing minute insects be used for such purposes as bathing, etc.

31. Never take medicine which is mixed with spirituous liquor or flesh meat; or which has been prescribed by a physician whose character is unknown.

32. Never allow bodily excretions or evacuations or saliva to fall in places prohibited by the Śāstras or by public custom.

33. Never enter or leave (a house) by a side entrance (or private door); never take up your residence at a place belonging to another person, without asking the owner's permission.

34. Males ought not to listen to (discourses on) religious knowledge, or to tales (about the exploits of heroes) from the mouths of women, [Footnote: This is in strict unison with the present Hindū practice of keeping women ignorant. That women in ancient times were not only educated, but sometimes erudite and celebrated as religious teachers, is proved by the example of Maitreyī, Gārgī and others] nor ought they to carry on controversial discussions with females; nor with a king or his officials.

35. Never speak disrespectfully of religious preceptors, of superiors, of those who have gained renown in the world, of learned men, and of those that carry arms.

36. Never do any act rashly; nor be slow in a religious duty. Impart to others the knowledge you may receive, and daily associate with holy men.

37. Do not go empty–handed to pay a visit to a religious preceptor, a god or a king. Never betray a trust or violate confidence. Never praise yourself with your own lips.

38. The clothing of my followers should not be of such an improper kind that, when put on, the limbs are exposed to view.

39. The worship of Kṛṣṇa must not be performed without attending to religious duties. Adoration of Kṛṣṇa should not be abandoned through fear of the reproaches of ignorant people.

40. On religious festivals and on ordinary days, the males and females that go to Kṛṣṇa's temple should keep separate and not touch each other.

41. Those twice–born persons who have received initiation into the worship of Kṛṣṇa from a duly qualified religious teacher should always wear on their necks two rosaries made of Tulsī wood (one for Rādhā and another for Kṛṣṇa), and should make an upright mark on their foreheads.

42. This mark should be made with Gopī–ćandana (__i.e.__ white earth from Dvārikā), or with sandal which is left from that employed in the worship of Hari (Kṛṣṇa), and mixed with saffron.

43. Within this (erect mark) there ought to be made a round (vṛitta) mark with the materials (or earth) used for the Puṇra, or with saffron which has served for the Prasāda of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa (that is, with a portion left from that employed in their worship).

44. Those pure Śūdras who are worshippers of Kṛṣṇa, while practicing their own peculiar duties, should, like the twice– born, use a rosary and a vertical mark on the forehead.

45. By those (Śūdra) worshippers who are different from the pure Śūdras two rosaries made of sandal wood, etc., are to be worn on the throat, and only a round mark is to be made on the forehead.

46. Those twice–born of my followers, who have inherited from their forefathers the custom of using a rosary of Rudrāksha berries (sacred to Śiva), and the three horizontal (Śaiva) marks, should not discontinue that practice.

47. Nārāyaṇa and Śiva should be equally regarded as manifestations of one and the same Universal Spirit, since both have been declared in the Vedas to be forms of Brahma. [Footnote: This precept furnishes an interesting proof of the tolerant character of Vaishṇavism, and of its harmony with the pantheism of the Vedānta.]

48. In times of slight distress my adherents shall not chiefly (or by preference) follow the laws which are laid down by the Śāstras for times of (excessive) distress.

49. Every day let every man awake before sunrise, and after calling on the name of Kṛṣṇa, proceed to the rites of bodily purification.

50. Having seated himself in some place apart, let him cleanse his teeth, and then, having bathed with pure water, put on two well–washed garments (an under and an upper).

51. Then having seated himself on a clean and single (asa.mkīrṇa) seat placed on ground purified (with cow–dung, etc.), let a man sip water with his face either to the east or north.

52. My male followers should then make the vertical mark with the round spot in it on their foreheads, and wives should only make a circular mark with red powder (of saffron).

53. A widow is prohibited from making either a vertical or round mark on her forehead. In the next place all my followers ought to engage in the mental worship of Kṛṣṇa.

54. After engaging in mental worship, let them bow down before the pictures of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa, and repeat the eight– syllabled prayer to Kṛṣṇa (that is––the formula meaning 'Kṛṣṇa is my refuge') as many times as possible. After that they may apply themselves to their secular affairs.

55. All my ordinary disciples should perform the preceding rules; but those who like Ambarīsha have dedicated their whole souls (to the Deity) should be most particular in performing the duties ending with mental worship in the order enumerated (in the preceding six verses as well as the following):––

56. (Such devoted persons) should also then worship an image made of either stone or metal, and the black stone called Śālagrāma (representing Vishṇu), with the (sixteen) offerings (of sandal, etc.), such as are procurable, and the eight–syllabled mantra of Kṛṣṇa should be repeated (manu = mantra).

57. Next (in order to the performance of brahma–yajña) the hymn celebrating the praises of Kṛṣṇa should be recited according to ability, and those that have not studied Sanskrit should at least repeat his name.

58. All who have devoted themselves (in this way) to the worship of Kṛṣṇa, should next present an offering (of cooked food) to him, and then they should eat the remains of the offering (prāsādikam). They should at all times be full of joy.

59. Since they are called the passionless (nirguṇa) worshippers of the passionless Kṛṣṇa, therefore, in consequence of that, all their acts are also (called) passionless (nirguṇa).

60. By these devoted (worshippers) indeed no water should be drunk, nor should any leaves, roots or fruits anywhere be eaten which have not been presented to Kṛṣṇa.

61. All those who from old age or some grievous calamity are unable (to perform worship) should make over the (image or Śālagrāma stone) of Kṛṣṇa to the charge of some other devotee (able to carry on the proper services), and should themselves act to the best of their ability.

62. An image (or Śālagrāma) of Kṛṣṇa, given by a religious leader (__āćārya__), or consecrated by him, should be worshipped, but to other images it is sufficient to make obeisance.

63. Every day all my followers should go to the temple of God in the evening, and there loudly repeat the names of the lord of Rādhikā.

64. The story of his exploits should be related as well as heard with the greatest reverence, and on festivals hymns in praise of Kṛṣṇa should be sung accompanied by musical instruments.

65. In this manner all my followers should every day perform religious duties. Moreover, they should study works both in Sanskrit and in the popular dialects, according to their mental abilities.

66. Whatever individual is appointed to any office, he should be so appointed with strict regard to his qualifications, after due consideration, and never in any other way.

67. Let every one always provide his own servants with food and clothing in the most suitable manner, and according to his own pecuniary means.

68. In conversation every person should be addressed conformably to his character (or qualities), and suitably to time and place, and not in any other manner.

69. By all well–conducted persons due deference must be shown to a religious guide, a king, an elder, an ascetic, a learned man, and one that practices austerities, by rising from the seat and so forth.

70. No man should sit down on the ground in the presence of a religious preceptor, a god, or king, or in a (solemn) assembly, in such a (disrespectful) attitude as to make one foot rest on the thigh, or with a cloth tied round the (waist and) knees.

71. A controversial discussion should never be carried on with a religious teacher (__āćārya__). He is to be honoured with gifts of food, money, clothes, and with all other things according to ability.

72. When any of my disciples hear of his arrival, they should immediately show their respect by advancing to meet him, and when he departs, they should accompany him as far as the confines of the village.

73. If an act, attended with large recompense, be opposed to religious duty, that act ought not to be committed; for religious duty (when performed) confers all desired objects.

74. An unrighteous act that may have been committed by great persons in former times must never be held (worthy of imitation); but their virtuous conduct only is to be imitated.

75. Let not the secrets of any one be ever anywhere divulged, the neglect (vyatikrama) of proper respect (for those deserving of reverence) should never be made, (as if all were to be looked at) with an equal eye (of esteem).

76. All my disciples should practice special religious observances during the four special months (beginning with Āshāha). But those who are sickly need only practice the same in the one month of Śrāvaṇa only.

77. Reading and listening to the exploits of Vishṇu, singing his praises, solemn worship, repetition of his mantra ("Great Kṛṣṇa is my refuge"), recitation of the hymn of praise (__i.e.__ of the thousand names of Vishṇu), reverential circumambulations (from left to right with the right side towards the object adored),

78. Prostration with the eight members (of the body) these are considered the best religious observances; any one of these ought to be performed with special devotion.

79. The fasts of all the eleventh days (of the waxing and waning moon) should be carefully observed; also of the birthdays of Kṛṣṇa; and of the night of Śiva (__Śiva–rātri__) with rejoicings during the day.

80. On a fast–day sleeping by day should most carefully be avoided, since by such sleep the merit of fasting is lost to men, quite as much as by sexual intercourse.

81. Whatever appointed order of religious fasts and festivals (vrata and utsava) was enjoined by Śrī Viṭhṭhaleśa (Viṭhṭhala–nātha), who was the son of Śrī Vallabhāćārya, the most eminent of Vaishṇavas.

82. Having conformed to that order, all religious fasts and festivals should be observed accordingly; and the form of worshipping Kṛṣṇa directed by him (Viṭhṭhaleśa) should be adopted.

83. A pilgrimage to the Tīrthas, or holy places, of which Dvārikā (Kṛṣṇa's city in Gujarāt) is the chief, should be performed according to rule. Love and Charity should be shown towards the poor by all, according to ability.

84. Vishṇu, Śiva, Gaṇa–pati (Gaṇeśa), Pārvatī, and the Sun, these five deities should be honoured with worship by my followers. [Footnote: It is evident from this verse, as from verse 47, that although Vaishṇavas give preferential worship to Vishṇu, they are really Pantheists in the sense of honoring other deities, as manifestations of the Supreme Being. It may be observed that although five deities are here mentioned, Gaṇapati and Pārvatī are connected with Śiva, as the Sun is with Vishṇu.]

85. When at any place a calamity is caused by a demon or by any similar cause, the charm called Nārāyaṇa should be recited or the mantra of Hanumān should be muttered, but not the mantra of any inferior god less esteemed.

 86. On the occurrence of eclipses of the sun and moon, all my followers should immediately suspend their other business, and, having purified themselves, should make repetition of the (eight– syllabled) mantra of Kṛṣṇa.

87. When the eclipse has passed off, they should bathe with their clothes on, and those who are householders should distribute gifts according to their ability. Other persons (who have no worldly means) should engage in the worship of the supreme Lord (Vishṇu).

88. Those followers of mine who belong to the four classes should observe, in conformity with the Śāstras, the rules in regard to the contraction of impurity through births and deaths, according to the degree of kinship.

89. Brāhmans should possess tranquillity of mind, self– restraint, forbearance, contentment and similar virtues. Kshatriyas (or the soldier caste) should be remarkable for bravery, fortitude, and the like qualities.

90. Vai
śyas (or the agricultural and commercial caste) should occupy themselves in mercantile pursuits, money–lending, and the like. Śūdras (or the servile class) should be employed in serving the twice–born, etc.

91. The twice–born should perform at the proper seasons, and according to their means––each according to his own domestic rules––the twelve purificatory rites [Footnote: Of these only six are now generally performed, viz.:––1, the birth–ceremony, or touching the tongue of a new–born infant with clarified butter, etc.; 2, the name–giving ceremony on the tenth day; 3, tonsure; 4, induction into the privileges of the twice–born, by investiture with the sacred thread; 5, solemn return home from the house of a preceptor after completing the prescribed course of study; 6, marriage. See __Indian Wisdom__, p. 246.] (__sanskāra__), the (six) daily duties [Footnote: The six daily duties (called Nitya–karman), according to Parāśara, are:––1, bathing; 2, morning and evening prayer (sandhyā); 3, repetition of sacred texts; 4, offerings to fire (homa); 5, worship of ancestors; 6, worship of the gods. The six daily acts enjoined by Manu are different. See __Indian Wisdom__, p. 244.], and the Śraddha offerings to the spirits of departed ancestors.

92. If intentionally or unintentionally any sin, great or small, be committed, the proper penance must be performed according to ability.

93. The Vedas, the Vedānta–sūtras of Vyāsa, the Bhāgavata– purāṇa and the thousand names of Vishṇu in the Mahābhārata,

94. The Bhagavad–gītā and the precepts of Vidura, the Vāsudeva– māhātmya from the Vaishṇava–khaṇa of the Skanda–Purāṇa,

95. And the Smṛiti of Yājñavalkya, which is one of the Dharma– Śāstras, these eight sacred books are approved by me as authorities. [Footnote: I commend this list to the attention of those European scholars who wish to be guided by Indian authorities in determining the real "sacred books" of India.]

96. All my twice–born disciples who wish good to themselves should recite these sacred books and hear them recited.

97. In deciding questions of ancient usage (āćāra), or practice, or penance, the code of Yājñavalkya, with its commentary the Mitāksharā, should be taken (as the best authority).

98. The tenth and fifth books of the Bhāgavata Purāṇa are to be regarded as having the preeminence over all the other sacred books for the understanding of the glory of Kṛṣṇa.

99. The tenth and fifth books of the Bhāgavata Purāṇa and the code of Yājñavalkya are respectively my Bhakti–Śāstra (manual of faith), Yoga–Śāstra (manual of devotion), and Dharma–Śāstra (manual of law).

100. As a treatise on the soul, the commentary on the Bhagavad– Gītā as well as that on the ŚārīrakaSūtras of Vyāsa, made by Rāmānujāćārya, commends itself to my approval.

101. Whatever precepts in these sacred books have for their subject the excessive exaltation of Kṛṣṇa and of Justice (Vṛisha), of faith and of indifference to the world––

102. Such precepts should be regarded as taking precedence over all others. Their essential doctrine is that devotion to Kṛṣṇa should be joined with the performance of duty.

103. Duty (__dharma__) is that good practice which is enjoined both by the Veda (Śruti) and by the law (Smṛiti) founded on the Veda. Devotion (__bhakti__) is intense love for Kṛṣṇa, accompanied with a due sense of his glory.

104. Indifference to worldly objects means absence of satisfaction in any object except Kṛṣṇa. True knowledge consists in discriminating rightly between the nature of the personal soul (jīva), of the external world (Māyā), and of the Supreme Being (Īśa).

105. The personal soul dwells in the heart. It is as subtle as an atom; it is all thought; it has the faculty of knowledge; it is ascertained to be constantly pervading the whole body (__i.e.__ the three corporeal envelopes kāraṇa, sūkshma, and sthūla) by its power of perception; it is characterized by indivisibility and the like.

106. The external world (Māyā) is identical with the energizing power of Kṛṣṇa. It is composed of the three Guṇas; it is darkness; it is to be understood as the cause of the soul's having such ideas in regard to the body, and the things relating to the body, as are conveyed by the expressions I, mine, and the like.

107. He who abides in the living personal soul in the character of an internal monitor, as the personal soul dwells in the heart, he is to be considered as the Self–existent Supreme Being, the Rewarder of all actions.

108. That Being, known by various names––such as the glorious Kṛṣṇa, Param Brahma, Bhagavān, Purushottama––the cause of all manifestations, is to be adored by us as our one chosen deity.

109. He, together with Rādhā, should be regarded as the Supreme Lord, under the name of Rādhā–Kṛṣṇa. With Rukmiṇī and Ramā, he is known as Lakshmī–Nārāyaṇa.

110. When joined with Arjuna, he is known by the name of Nara– Nārāyaṇa; when associated with Balabhadra ( = Balarāma), or any other divine personage, he is called Ramā–Kṛṣṇa and so on.

111. Those devoted (female companions of the god) Rādhā and his other (consorts) are in some places represented at his side. In other places (their images do not appear, because) they are supposed to be one with his body and he with theirs.

112. On no account let it be supposed that difference in forms makes any difference in the identity of the deity. For the two– armed Kṛṣṇa may exhibit himself with four arms (or eight, or a thousand, or any number of arms).

113. Towards him alone ought all faith and worship (bhakti) to be directed by every human being on earth in every possible manner. Nothing else, except such (faith), is able to procure salvation.

114. The best result of the virtues of those who possess good qualities is faith in Kṛṣṇa and association with holy men; without these, even persons who know (the Śāstras) go downwards (towards a lower state).

115. Meditation should be directed towards Kṛṣṇa, his incarnations and their images, but not towards living men, nor (inferior) gods, etc., nor devotees, nor (even) those who (merely) have knowledge of Brahma.

116. Having perceived, by abstract meditation, that the Spirit or Self is distinct from its three bodies (viz. the gross, subtle and causal bodies), and that it is a portion of the one Spirit of the Universe (Brahma), every man ought to worship Kṛṣṇa by means of that (self) at all times.

117. The tenth book of the Bhāgavata–Purāṇa should be listened to reverentially, and learned men should read it daily or (if frequent reading is impossible, at least) once a year.

118. The repetition (of the Bhāgavata), as well as of the thousand names of Vishṇu, etc., should be performed as far as possible in a pure place (such as the precincts of a temple); for (such repetition) causes the accomplishment of desired objects.

119. On the occurrence of any disaster caused by the elements (such as a flood or fire), or when any human calamity or sickness takes place, a man should be wholly occupied in striving to preserve himself and other people and in nothing else.

120. Religious usages, business transactions and penances, should be adapted to country, time, age, property, rank and ability.

121. The (philosophical) doctrine approved by me is the Viśishṭādvaita (of Rāmānuja) [Footnote: This verse proves that in their philosophical ideas the Svāmi–Nārāyaṇa sect are followers of the Rāmānuja sect. Compare verse 100.], and the desired heavenly abode is Goloka. There to worship Kṛṣṇa, and be united with him as the Supreme Soul of the Universe, is to be considered salvation (Mukti).

122. These that have been specified are the general duties, applicable to all my followers, whether male or female. Now I am about to enumerate the special duties.

123. The two sons of my elder and younger brothers (viz. Ayodhyā–prasāda and Raghu–vīra) ought never to impart instruction to any women except their nearest relations.

124. They ought never to touch or converse with any women in any place whatever. Cruelty should never be shown towards any person. A deposit belonging to another should never be taken charge of.

125. In business matters no one should stand security for any other person. In passing through a time of distress it is right to ask for alms, but debts should not be contracted.

126. One should not sell corn bestowed by one's own disciples; having given away old corn, new corn is to be bought. That is not called a sale.

127. On the fourth day of the light–half of the month Bhādra, the worship of Gaṇeśa should be performed, and on the fourteenth of the dark–half of Āśvina, Hanumān should be worshipped.

128. Those two sons (of my brothers, viz. Ayodhyā–prasāda and Raghu–vīra), who have been appointed as spiritual guides to guard the religious interests of my followers, should initiate all desirous of obtaining salvation (in the use of the mantra of Kṛṣṇa).

129. They should cause each of their disciples to continue steadfast in his own appointed duty. Honour should be paid to holy men, and the sacred Śāstras should be reverently repeated.

130. Worship of Lakshmī–Nārāyaṇa, and other forms of Kṛṣṇa that have been set up and consecrated by me in the great temples, should be performed with the proper ceremonies.

131. Any one who may come to the temple of Kṛṣṇa to ask for a gift of food (cooked or uncooked) should be received with respect, and food given to him according to ability.

132. Having established a school for giving instruction, some learned Brāhman should be appointed over it. True knowledge should be promoted throughout the world, for that is an act of great merit.

133. The two wives of these (sons of my brothers), with the permission of their respective husbands, should initiate females only (eva) in the Mantra of Kṛṣṇa.

134. They should never touch or speak to other males than their nearest relations; nor should they ever show their faces to them.

135. My male followers who are householders should never touch widows unless they are their own near relatives.

136. They should not remain alone in any private place with a youthful mother, sister or daughter, except in a time of distress. Nor should a wife be given away (to another man).

137. No attachment should on any account be formed with a woman who in any transactions has been brought into connexion with the king of the country.

138. When a guest has arrived at a house, he should be honoured by those (who live in it) with food and other things according to ability. Offerings to the Gods and the Pitṛis (at the Devatā– tarpaṇa and Pitṛi–tarpaṇa and Śrāddha ceremonies) should be made according to right usage and according to one's means.

139. It is the duty of my disciples, as long as they live and according to their ability, to honour with faithful attention their father, mother, spiritual preceptor, and any one affected with sickness.

140. Every person should, according to his ability, carry on some occupation suitable to his caste and religious order. Those that live by agriculture should not allow a bull to be gelded.

141. Provisions and money should be laid by according to circumstances and time; and those that keep cattle should store up as much hay as these animals may need for their consumption.

142. If a man can himself attend to the proper feeding of cows and other animals with hay and water, then only he may keep them, otherwise he must not do so.

143. No business in regard to giving or receiving land or property should ever be transacted even with a son or friend, without a written deed attested by witnesses.

144. When any pecuniary transactions connected with giving away a girl in marriage have to be transacted for one's self or another person, the money to be delivered over should not be settled by verbal agreement, but only by a written contract attested by witnesses.

145. A man's expenditure ought always to be in proportion to his income. Otherwise it is certain that great misery will arise.

146. Every day one should take note of one's income and expenditure in the regular business of life, and write them down with one's own hand.

147. My followers should assign a tithe of the grain, money, etc., acquired by their own occupation or exertions, to Kṛṣṇa, and the poor should give a twentieth part.

148. The due performance of fasts, of which the eleventh–day fasts are the principal, should be effected according to the Śāstras and one's ability; for this will lead to the attainment of desired objects.

149. Every year in the month Śrāvaṇa one should perform, or cause others to perform, cheerfully the worship of Śiva with the leaves of the Bilva–tree, etc.

150. Neither money, nor utensils, nor ornaments, nor clothes should be borrowed for use (on festive occasions) from one's own spiritual preceptor, or from the temple of Kṛṣṇa.

151. While going to do homage to great Kṛṣṇa, to a spiritual preceptor, or to a holy man, food should not be accepted from others on the road, or at the places of pilgrimage; for such food takes away religious merit.

152. The full amount of promised wages should be paid to a workman. Payment of a debt is never to be kept secret. Let no one have any dealings with wicked men.

153. If through great distress caused by a famine, by enemies, or by (the oppression of) a king, any danger of destruction arises anywhere to character, wealth or life,

154. The wise among my followers should at once quit even their own native country, and having gone to another, let them reside there happily.

155. Wealthy householders should perform those sacrifices in honour of Vishṇu which entail no killing of animals. Brāhmans and holy men (Sādhus) should be fed on festival days at sacred places of pilgrimage.

156. They should observe the great festivals in honour of the Deity in the temples, and should distribute various gifts among Brāhmans who are deserving objects (of generosity).

157. Kings who are my followers should govern all their subjects in accordance with the law (laid down in the Dharma–Śāstras), and should protect them as if they were their children, and should establish the observance of proper duties throughout the whole land.

158. They should be well acquainted with the circumstances of their kingdom; as, for example, with the seven Angas (viz. the duties of the sovereign, minister, ally, treasury, territory, fortresses and army); the four Upāyas (viz. conciliation, sowing dissension, bribing, and punishing); the six Guṇas (viz. peace, war, marching, sitting encamped, dividing the forces, having recourse to an ally for protection); and the places of resort to which spies should be sent. They should also make themselves acquainted with the men who are skilled in legal procedure, and with all the court functionaries, observing by the right signs whether any ought to be punished or not. [Footnote: With reference to this verse compare Manu's directions to Kings (Books vii. and viii.), and the precepts in the Vigraha chapter of the Hitopadeśa.]

159. Wives should honour their husbands as if they were gods, and never offend them with improper language, though they be diseased, indigent, or imbecile. [Footnote: Compare Manu, v. 154.]

160. No communication, even though arising naturally (__sāhajika__), should be held with any other man who may be possessed of beauty, youth and good qualities.

161. A chaste woman should not allow her navel, thighs, or breasts to be seen by males; nor should she remain without an upper garment (anuttarīyā), nor should she look at (the antics of) buffoons, nor associate with an immodest woman.

162. A wife while her husband is absent in a foreign country should wear neither ornaments nor fine clothes; she ought not to frequent other people's houses, and should abstain from laughing and talking with other women.

163. Widows should serve the God Kṛṣṇa with minds intent on him as their only husband; they should live under the control of their father, or other male members of the family, and never in independence.

164. They must never at any time touch any men except their nearest relations, and when young they should never without necessity engage in conversation with youthful men.

165. If an infant male–child touch them, no blame attaches to them, any more than from contact with a dumb animal; nor if they are compelled from necessity to talk with or touch an old man.

166. Instruction in any science should not be received by them from any man except from their nearest relations. They should frequently emaciate their bodies by vows and fasts.

167. They should never give away to others the money which is required for their own support. That only must be given away which they have in excess.

168. They should eat only one meal a day, and should sleep on the ground; they should never look at (animals) engaged in sexual acts.

169. They must never wear the dress of a married woman, nor of a female ascetic, nor of a mendicant, nor any unbecoming attire.

170. They should neither associate with nor touch a woman who has been guilty of procuring abortion; nor should they either converse about, or hear stories of the loves of the male sex.

171. Except in times of distress widows who are young should never remain alone in secret places along with men, even with their own relatives, if youthful.

172. They should never join in the frolics practiced at the Holī festival, nor should they put on ornaments or finely woven clothes composed of cotton or metal threads.

173. Neither wives nor widows ought ever to bathe without wearing clothes. No woman should ever conceal the first appearance of her monthly periods.

174. A woman at that season should not for an interval of three days touch any human being, clothes, etc.; nor ought she to do so till she has bathed on the fourth day.

175. Those of my followers who have taken the vow of Naishṭhika Brahmaćārīs (that is, of perpetual celibacy and chastity) must not knowingly either touch or converse with or look at women.

176. They should never talk or listen to conversations about women, and they should not perform their ablutions or other religious rites at places where women pass backwards and forwards.

177. They should never knowingly touch or look at even the pictures or wooden images of women, unless they be the representations of goddesses.

178. They should neither draw any likeness of a woman, nor touch her clothes. They must never knowingly look even at animals engaged in sexual acts.

179. They should neither touch nor look at a male dressed up as a woman; nor should they sing the praises of the Deity with a view to being heard by women.

180. They should pay no attention to the command of even their spiritual preceptor if likely to lead them to a breach of their vow of chastity. They should continue steadfast, contented, and humble–minded.

181. When a woman insists on forcing herself near them, they should immediately try to keep her off by expostulating with her, and (if she still approaches) by reproaching her.

182. In cases where their own lives, or those of women, are in jeopardy, they may be allowed contact or conversation with women, such contact being necessary for the saving of life.

183. They should not anoint their lips with oil. They should not carry weapons. They should not dress themselves in unbecoming costume. They should subdue the sense of taste.

184. If in the house of any Brāhman the meals are cooked and served up by a woman, they should not go there to ask for food, but should ask for it at some other house.

185. They should constantly repeat the Vedas and Śāstras, and serve their spiritual preceptor. They must shun the society of women, and of men who are fond of women.

186. He who is by birth a Brāhman should on no account drink water from a leathern vessel; nor should he ever eat garlic, onions, etc.

187. Nor must he eat food without having first performed his ablutions, the Sandhyā service, repetition of the Gāyatri, the worship of Vishṇu, and the Vaiśvadeva ceremony. [Footnote: This ceremony, which partly consists in throwing portions of food into the fire, before dinner, as an offering to all the deities, will be fully described in my new work on "Religious Thought and Life in India," to be published by Mr. Murray.]

188. All who are Sādhus are bound, just like those who have made a vow of perpetual celibacy, to avoid associating with women, or with men who are fond of women, and should subdue their (six) internal enemies (lust, anger, avarice, infatuation, pride, and envy).

189. They should subjugate all the senses, more especially the sense of taste; they should neither lay by a store of property themselves, nor make others do so for them.

190. They must not take charge of any one's deposit, they should never relax their firmness, nor allow a woman to enter their abodes at any time. [Footnote: We may notice that there is no little repetition in this Book of instructions, especially in enforcing the duty of keeping clear of all feminine seductions.]

191. Except at a time of distress, they should never go anywhere by night without a companion, nor should they travel to any place singly.

192. They should not use a costly variegated cloth, or one dyed with kusumbha, or dyed in any other way; or any expensive cloth, though freely presented to them by another.

193. They should not go to the houses of householders unless for the purpose of asking alms, or for being present at an assembly. They should not spend time uselessly without devoting any of it to the worship of the Deity.

194. To the abode of a householder in which only males are employed for serving up the cooked food, and where no woman is to be seen––

195. To the house of such a householder only should my Sādhus resort for participation in a meal, otherwise they should ask for uncooked food, and prepare it themselves.

196. All my holiest sages should conduct themselves in the same manner as Bharata, son of ṛishabha, the idiot Brāhman (Jaa– vipra), did in ancient times. [Footnote: The story is told in Vishṇu–purāṇa, ii. 13. He feigned idiocy, that he might not be troubled with worldly society and might so give his undivided attention to devotional exercises.]

197. Those holy men (Sādhus) who are Brahmaćārīs should diligently abstain from eating or using betel–leaves, opium, tobacco (tamāla), etc.

198. They should never accept a meal given on the performance of the Sa__n__skāra ceremonies, beginning with that of conception; [Footnote: See note to verse 91.] nor on performing the Śrāddha ceremony at death, nor at that performed on the 12th day after decease.

199. They should never sleep during the day, unless afflicted with sickness, etc. They should never gossip about local matters, nor intentionally listen to such gossip.

200. They should not lie down on a bedstead except when suffering from illness or other affliction, and should be guileless and straightforward in their behaviour towards other Sādhus.

201. They should patiently bear abusive language, or even blows from evil–minded persons, and wish good to (them in return).

202. They should not undertake the work of a go–between or informer, or spy; they should never show selfishness or partiality towards their relations.

203. Thus I have specified in a summary manner the general duties of all. Those who desire more particular instructions must refer to the sacred books handed down by tradition.

204. Having myself extracted the essence of an the sacred Śāstrās, I have written this Directory, which leads men to the attainment of desired objects.

205. Hence it is incumbent on my followers, having their minds well controlled, to conduct themselves in conformity with its precepts, and not according to their own wills.

206. Those males and females of my disciples who will act according to these directions shall certainly obtain the four great objects of human desires (viz. __Dharma__, religious merit; __Artha__, wealth; __Kāma__, pleasure; and __Moksha__, final beatitude).

207. Those who will not act according to these (directions) shall be considered by my male and female followers as excluded from communion with my sect.

208. My followers should daily read this Book of directions, and those who do not know how to read should listen to others reading it.

209. But in the absence of a reader (vaktrabhāve), worship should be paid to it every day, and it should be honoured with the greatest reverence as my word and my representative.

210. This Directory should only be given to those persons who are endowed with a nature of the divine type; never to a man possessing a nature of the demoniacal type. [Footnote: The Purāṇas divide all men into two classes: those whose nature is divine, and those whose nature is demoniacal.]

211. This Book of directions, bringing welfare (to all who study it), was completed on the first day of the season of spring in the year 1882 of the era of Vikramāditya. ( = Aḍ. 1826).

212. May Kṛṣṇa, the remover of the sufferings of his worshippers, the maintainer of devotion, accompanied with the performance of proper duties, the bestower of the desires of the heart, grant us blessings of all kinds!

End of the Project Gutenberg EBook of The Siksha–Patri of the Swami–Narayana Sect, by Professor Monier Williams (Trans.)