As I discuss in the this answer, by far the most popular school of Hindu philosophy is the Vedanta school, which bases its tenets on the doctrines laid out in the Brahma Sutras, a work by the sage Vyasa which summarizes and systematizes the philosophical teachings of the Upanishads. You can read the Brahma Sutras here. In any case, Adhyaya 3 Pada 3 of the Brahma Sutras describes the Brahma Vidyas, 32 lessons found in the various Upanishads which can each lead you to Brahman if you meditate on them. You can see the full list of 32 Vidyas here.

One of these Vidyas is the Nyasa Vidya of the Mahanarayana Upanishad. It concerns the path of Sharanagati or complete surrender to Vishnu, which is emphasized by Sri Vaishnavas as I discuss here and here. But my question is, where in the Mahanarayana Upanishad is the Nyasa Vidya found?

Here is what this web page says:

  1. Nyaasa Vidya — Self-surrender
    Taittiriya Narayanam, 49–52

For those who don't know, the reason the Mahanarayana Upanishad is called the Taittiriya Narayana Upanishad is because it constitutes the 10th section of the Taittiriya Aranyaka of the Yajur Veda, as opposed to the Taittiriya Upanishad which constitutes the 7th, 8th, and 9th sections as I discuss here. In any case, you can read the Mahanarayana Upanishad here. But what does "49-52" mean?

Does it mean verses 49-52? Here are verses 49-52 of section 1 of the Mahanarayana Upanishad:

svasti no maghavā karotu ।
hantu pāpmānaṃ yo'smān dveṣṭi ॥ 49॥

somānam̐ svaraṇaṃ kṛṇuhi brahmaṇaspate kakṣīvantaṃ ya auśijam ।
śarīraṃ yajñaśamalaṃ kusīdaṃ tasmintsīdatu yo'smān dveṣṭi ॥ 50॥

caraṇaṃ pavitraṃ vitataṃ purāṇaṃ yena pūtastarati duṣkṛtāni ।
tena pavitreṇa śuddhena pūtā ati pāpmānamarātiṃ tarema ॥ 51॥

sajoṣā indra sagaṇo marudbhiḥ somaṃ piba vṛtrahañchūra vidvān ।
jahi śatrūm̐rapa mṛdho nudasvāthābhayaṃ kṛṇuhi viśvato naḥ ॥ 52॥

I-49: May Indra grant us welfare. May he destroy the evil one hostile to us.

I-50: O Lord of prayers, make me the presser of soma juice, well known among the gods like Kakshivan, the son of Usik. Make me physically capable of performing sacrifices. Let those who are hostile to us remain ‘there’ long, in the hell.

I-51: He who is rendered holy by the ancient, widespread, sanctifying feet (or by virtuous conduct) crosses over evil deeds and their effects. Having been rendered holy by that naturally pure and purifying feet of the Lord (or conduct) may we overcome our enemies, the sins.

I-52: O Indra, O slayer of Vritra, O valorous one and all-knowing one, accept with pleasure our soma oblation in the company of your retinue and troop of gods. Slay our enemies, give us victory in battle and grant us safety and fearlessness from every quarter.

Or does it mean sections 49-52? Here they are:

harim̐ harantamanuyanti devā viśvasyeśānaṃ vṛṣabhaṃ matīnām ।
brahmasarūpamanu medamāgādayanaṃ mā vivadhīrvikramasva ॥

śalkairagnimindhāna ubhau lokau sanemaham ।
ubhayorlokayorṛdhvāti mṛtyuṃ tarāmyaham ॥

mā chido mṛtyo mā vadhīrmā me balaṃ vivṛho mā pramoṣīḥ ।
prajāṃ mā me rīriṣa āyurugra nṛcakṣasaṃ tvā haviṣā vidhema ॥

mā no mahāntamuta mā no arbhakaṃ mā na ukṣantamuta mā na ukṣitam ।
mā no vadhīḥ pitaraṃ mota mātaraṃ priyā mā nastanuvo rudra rīriṣaḥ ॥

XLIX-1: Like servants gods follow Hari who is the Lord of the universe, who leads all thoughts as the foremost leader and who absorbs into Himself the universe at the time of dissolution (or who destroys the sins of devotees). May this path to liberation taught in the Vedas having the same form as Brahman open itself to me. Deprive not me of that. Strive to secure it for me.

L-1: Kindling the consecrated fire with chips of wood (in order to offer oblations during worship) may I attain both the worlds. Having attained the prosperity of this world and the next I shall cross over death.

LI-1: O fierce Death, do not cut off my life. Do not injure (my interest). Do not cripple my strength. Do not subject me to deprivation. Do not hurt my progeny and life. I shall serve thee with oblations; for, thou art vigilant over the deeds of men.

LII-1: O Rudra, injure not our elders, our children, our adults capable of procreation, the foetus we have laid in the mother’s womb and our father and mother. Do not hurt our dear selves.

So does anyone know for sure what verses constitute the Nyasa Vidya?

1 Answer 1


The webpage has a typo and is missing a leading '1'. The Nyasa-Vidya is described in the concluding 6 sections of the Taittiriya-Narayana-valli aka Mahanarayana-Upanishad. This would make it sections 149-152, not 49-52. The numbering also is broken. Rangaramanuja's version of the Upanishad has only 150 sections and Nyasavidya is covered in sections 145-150.

For reference, here is the original text and Vishishtadvaitic translation/interpretation according to Upanishad Bhashyakara Rangaramanuja Muni. The excerpt is from the book Upanishads by NS Anantharangachar. I have included the entire section on Nyasa. Though there is liberal use of devanagari within the translation, it is still quite readable even if you don't know the script.

enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .