Bīrūnī, Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad, Alberuni's India (v. 1)

(London :  Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co.,  1910.)



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CHAPTER  VII.                               77

ating the senses in a gentle way to detach themselves according to
from the external world, and to concentrate themselves nsJum-
upon the internal one, so that they exclusively occupy and Gttk
themselves with God.    This is in general the path of
him who does not desire anything save what is sufficient Page 38.
to sustain life."

In the book Vishnu-Dhai-ma we read : " The king
Pariksha, of the family of Bhrigu, asked Satanika, the
head of an assembly of sages, who stayed with him, for
the explanation of some notion regarding the deity, and
by way of answer the sage communicated what he had
heard from Saunaka, Saunaka from Usanas, and Usanas
from Brahman, as follows : ' God is without first and
without last; he has not been born from anything, and
he has not borne anything save that of which it is im¬
possible to say that it is He, and just as impossible to
say that it is Not-he. How should I be able to ponder
on the absolute good which is an outflow of his benevo¬
lence, aud of the absolute bad which is a product of his
wrath ; and how could I know him so as to worship him
as is his due, save by turning away from the world in
general and by occupying myself exclusively with him,
by perpetually cogitating on him ? '

" It was objected to him: ' Man is weak and his life
is a trifling matter. He can hardly bring himself to
abstain from the necessities of life, and this prevents
him from walking on the path of liberation. If we
were living in the first age of mankind, when life
extended to thousands of years, and when the world
was good because of the non-existence of evil, we might
hope that that which is necessary on this path should
be done. But since we live in the last age, what,
according to your opinion, is there in this revolving
world that might protect him against the floods of the
ocean and save him from drowning ? '

" Thereupon Brahman spoke : ' Man wants nourish¬
ment, shelter, and clothing.    Therefore in them there
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