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To The Maruts





Source: Sacred Books Of The East


I

Come hither, Maruts, on your chariots charged with lightning, resounding
with beautiful songs, stored with spears, and winged with horses! Fly to
us like birds, with your best food, you mighty ones! They come
gloriously on their red, or, it may be, on their tawny horses which
hasten their chariots. He who holds the axe is brilliant like
gold;--with the tire of the chariot they have struck the earth. On your
bodies there are daggers for beauty; may they stir up our minds as they
stir up the forests. For yourselves, O well-born Maruts, the vigorous
among you shake the stone for distilling Soma. Days went round you and
came back, O hawks, back to this prayer, and to this sacred rite; the
Gotamas making prayer with songs, pushed up the lid of the cloud to
drink. No such hymn was ever known as this which Gotama sounded for you,
O Maruts, when he saw you on golden wheels, wild boars rushing about
with iron tusks. This comforting speech rushes sounding towards you,
like the speech of a suppliant: it rushed freely from our hands as our
speeches are wont to do.

II

Let us now proclaim for the robust host, for the herald of the powerful
Indra, their ancient greatness! O ye strong-voiced Maruts, you heroes,
prove your powers on your march, as with a torch, as with a sword! Like
parents bringing a dainty to their own son, the wild Maruts play
playfully at the sacrifices. The Rudras reach the worshipper with their
protection, strong in themselves, they do not fail the sacrificer. For
him to whom the immortal guardians have given fulness of wealth, and who
is himself a giver of oblations, the Maruts, who gladden men with the
milk of rain, pour out, like friends, many clouds. You who have stirred
up the clouds with might, your horses rushed forth, self-guided. All
beings who dwell in houses are afraid of you, your march is brilliant
with your spears thrust forth. When they whose march is terrible have
caused the rocks to tremble, or when the manly Maruts have shaken the
back of heaven, then every lord of the forest fears at your racing, each
shrub flies out of your way, whirling like chariot-wheels. You, O
terrible Maruts, whose ranks are never broken, favorably fulfil our
prayer! Wherever your glory-toothed lightning bites, it crunches cattle,
like a well-aimed bolt. The Maruts whose gifts are firm, whose bounties
are never ceasing, who do not revile, and who are highly praised at the
sacrifices, they sing their song for to drink the sweet juice: they know
the first manly deeds of the hero Indra. The man whom you have guarded,
O Maruts, shield him with hundredfold strongholds from injury and
mischief--the man whom you, O fearful, powerful singers, protect from
reproach in the prosperity of his children. On your chariots, O Maruts,
there are all good things, strong weapons are piled up clashing against
each other. When you are on your journeys, you carry the rings on your
shoulders, and your axle turns the two wheels at once. In their manly
arms there are many good things, on their chests golden chains, flaring
ornaments, on their shoulders speckled deer-skins, on their fellies
sharp edges; as birds spread their wings, they spread out splendors
behind. They, mighty by might, all-powerful powers, visible from afar
like the heavens with the stars, sweet-toned, soft-tongued singers with
their mouths, the Maruts, united with Indra, shout all around. This is
your greatness, O well-born Maruts!--your bounty extends far, as the
sway of Aditi. Not even Indra in his scorn can injure that bounty, on
whatever man you have bestowed it for his good deeds. This is your
kinship with us, O Maruts, that you, immortals, in former years have
often protected the singer. Having through this prayer granted a hearing
to man, all these heroes together have become well known by their
valiant deeds. That we may long flourish, O Maruts, with your wealth, O
ye racers, that our men may spread in the camp, therefore let me achieve
the rite with these offerings. May this praise, O Maruts, this song of
Mandarya, the son of Mana, the poet, ask you with food for offspring for
ourselves! May we have an invigorating autumn, with quickening rain!

III

For the manly host, the joyful, the wise, for the Maruts bring thou, O
Nodhas, a pure offering. I prepare songs, like as a handy priest, wise
in his mind, prepares the water, mighty at sacrifices. They are born,
the tall bulls of heaven, the manly youths of Rudra, the divine, the
blameless, pure, and bright like suns; scattering raindrops, full of
terrible designs, like giants. The youthful Rudras, they who never grow
old, the slayers of the demon, have grown irresistible like mountains.
They throw down with their strength all beings, even the strongest, on
earth and in heaven. They deck themselves with glittering ornaments for
a marvellous show; on their chests they fastened gold chains for beauty;
the spears on their shoulders pound to pieces; they were born together
by themselves, the men of Dyu. They who confer power, the roarers, the
devourers of foes, they made winds and lightnings by their powers. The
shakers milk the heavenly udders, they sprinkle the earth all round with
milk. The bounteous Maruts pour forth water, mighty at sacrifices, the
fat milk of the clouds. They seem to lead about the powerful horse, the
cloud, to make it rain; they milk the thundering, unceasing spring.
Mighty they are, powerful, of beautiful splendor, strong in themselves
like mountains, yet swiftly gliding along;--you chew up forests, like
wild elephants, when you have assumed your powers among the red flames.
Like lions they roar, the wise Maruts, they are handsome like gazelles,
the all-knowing. By night with their spotted rain-clouds and with their
spears--lightnings--they rouse the companions together, they whose ire
through strength is like the ire of serpents. You who march in
companies, the friends of man, heroes, whose ire through strength is
like the ire of serpents, salute heaven and earth! On the seats on your
chariots, O Maruts, the lightning stands, visible like light.
All-knowing, surrounded with wealth, endowed with powers, singers, men
of endless prowess, armed with strong rings, they, the archers, have
taken the arrow in their fists. The Maruts who with the golden tires of
their wheels increase the rain, stir up the clouds like wanderers on the
road. They are brisk, indefatigable, they move by themselves; they throw
down what is firm, the Maruts with their brilliant spears make
everything to reel. We invoke with prayer the offspring of Rudra, the
brisk, the pure, the worshipful, the active. Cling for happiness-sake to
the strong company of the Maruts, the chasers of the sky, the powerful,
the impetuous. The mortal whom ye, Maruts, protected, he indeed
surpasses people in strength through your protection. He carries off
booty with his horses, treasures with his men; he acquires honorable
wisdom, and he prospers. Give, O Maruts, to our lords strength glorious,
invincible in battle, brilliant, wealth-acquiring, praiseworthy, known
to all men. Let us foster our kith and kin during a hundred winters.
Will you then, O Maruts, grant unto us wealth, durable, rich in men,
defying all onslaughts?--wealth a hundred and a thousand-fold, always
increasing?--May he who is rich in prayers come early and soon!

IV

Sing forth, O Kanvas, to the sportive host of your Maruts, brilliant on
their chariots, and unscathed,--they who were born together,
self-luminous, with the spotted deer, the spears, the daggers, the
glittering ornaments. I hear their whips, almost close by, when they
crack them in their hands; they gain splendor on their way. Sing forth
the god-given prayer to the wild host of your Maruts, endowed with
terrible vigor and strength. Celebrate the bull among the cows, for it
is the sportive host of the Maruts; he grew as he tasted the rain. Who,
O ye men, is the strongest among you here, ye shakers of heaven and
earth, when you shake them like the hem of a garment? At your approach
the son of man holds himself down; the gnarled cloud fled at your fierce
anger. They at whose racings the earth, like a hoary king, trembles for
fear on their ways, their birth is strong indeed: there is strength to
come forth from their mother, nay, there is vigor twice enough for it.
And these sons, the singers, stretched out the fences in their racings;
the cows had to walk knee-deep. They cause this long and broad unceasing
rain to fall on their ways. O Maruts, with such strength as yours, you
have caused men to tremble, you have caused the mountains to tremble. As
the Maruts pass along, they talk together on the way: does anyone hear
them? Come fast on your quick steeds! there are worshippers for you
among the Kanvas: may you well rejoice among them. Truly there is enough
for your rejoicing. We always are their servants, that we may live even
the whole of life.

V

To every sacrifice you hasten together, you accept prayer after prayer,
O quick Maruts! Let me therefore bring you hither by my prayers from
heaven and earth, for our welfare, and for our great protection; the
shakers who were born to bring food and light, self-born and
self-supported, like springs, like thousandfold waves of water, aye,
visibly like unto excellent bulls, those Maruts, like Soma-drops, which
squeezed from ripe stems dwell, when drunk, in the hearts of the
worshipper--see how on their shoulders there clings as if a clinging
wife; in their hands the quoit is held and the sword. Lightly they have
come down from heaven of their own accord: Immortals, stir yourselves
with the whip! The mighty Maruts on dustless paths, armed with brilliant
spears, have shaken down even the strong places. O ye Maruts, who are
armed with lightning-spears, who stirs you from within by himself, as
the jaws are stirred by the tongue? You shake the sky, as if on the
search for food; you are invoked by many, like the solar horse of the
day. Where, O Maruts, is the top, where the bottom of the mighty sky
where you came? When you throw down with the thunderbolt what is strong,
like brittle things, you fly across the terrible sea! As your conquest
is violent, splendid, terrible, full and crushing, so, O Maruts, is your
gift delightful, like the largess of a liberal worshipper,
wide-spreading, laughing like heavenly lightning. From the tires of
their chariot-wheels streams gush forth, when they send out the voice of
the clouds; the lightnings smiled upon the earth, when the Maruts shower
down fatness. Prisni brought forth for the great fight the terrible
train of the untiring Maruts: when fed they produced the dark cloud, and
then looked about for invigorating food. May this praise, O Maruts, this
song of Mandarya, the son of Mana, the poet, ask you with food for
offspring for ourselves! May we have an invigorating autumn, with
quickening rain!

VI

The Maruts charged with rain, endowed with fierce force, terrible like
wild beasts, blazing in their strength, brilliant like fires, and
impetuous, have uncovered the rain-giving cows by blowing away the
cloud. The Maruts with their rings appeared like the heavens with their
stars, they shone wide like streams from clouds as soon as Rudra, the
strong man, was born for you, O golden-breasted Maruts, in the bright
lap of Prisni. They wash their horses like racers in the courses, they
hasten with the points of the reed on their quick steeds. O golden-jawed
Maruts, violently shaking your jaws, you go quick with your spotted
deer, being friends of one mind. Those Maruts have grown to feed all
these beings, or, it may be, they have come hither for the sake of a
friend, they who always bring quickening rain. They have spotted horses,
their bounties cannot be taken away, they are like headlong charioteers
on their ways. O Maruts, wielding your brilliant spears, come hither on
smooth roads with your fiery cows whose udders are swelling; being of
one mind, like swans toward their nests, to enjoy the sweet offering. O
one-minded Maruts, come to our prayers, come to our libations like Indra
praised by men! Fulfil our prayer, like the udder of a barren cow, and
make the prayer glorious by booty to the singer. Grant us this strong
horse for our chariot, a draught that rouses our prayers, from day to
day, food to the singers, and to the poet in our homesteads luck,
wisdom, inviolable and invincible strength. When the gold-breasted
Maruts harness the horses to their chariots, bounteous in wealth, then
it is as if a cow in the folds poured out to her calf copious food, to
every man who has offered libations. Whatever mortal enemy may have
placed us among wolves, shield us from hurt, ye Vasus! Turn the wheels
with burning heat against him, and strike down the weapon of the impious
fiend, O Rudras! Your march, O Maruts, appears brilliant, whether even
friends have milked the udder of Prisni, or whether, O sons of Rudra,
you mean to blame him who praises you, and to weaken those who are
weakening Trita, O unbeguiled heroes. We invoke you, the great Maruts,
the constant wanderers, at the offering of the rapid Vishnu; holding
ladles and prayerful we ask the golden-colored and exalted Maruts for
glorious wealth. The Dasagvas carried on the sacrifice first; may they
rouse us at the break of dawn. Like the dawn, they uncover the dark
nights with the red rays, the strong ones, with their brilliant light,
as with a sea of milk. With the morning clouds, as if with glittering
red ornaments, these Maruts have grown great in the sacred places.
Streaming down with rushing splendor, they have assumed their bright and
brilliant color. Approaching them for their great protection to help us,
we invoke them with this worship, they whom Trita may bring near, like
the five Hotri priests for victory, descending on their chariot to help.
May that grace of yours by which you help the wretched across all
anguish, and by which you deliver the worshipper from the reviler, come
hither, O Maruts; may your favor approach us like a cow going to her
calf!

VII

I come to you with this adoration, with a hymn I implore the favor of
the quick Maruts. O Maruts, you have rejoiced in it clearly, put down
then all anger and unharness your horses! This reverent praise of yours,
O Maruts, fashioned in the heart, has been offered by the mind, O gods!
Come to it, pleased in your mind, for you give increase to our worship.
May the Maruts when they have been praised be gracious to us, and
likewise Indra, the best giver of happiness, when he has been praised.
May our lances through our valor stand always erect, O Maruts! I am
afraid of this powerful one, and trembling in fear of Indra. For you the
offerings were prepared--we have now put them away, forgive us! Thou
through whom the Manas see the mornings, whenever the eternal dawns
flash forth with power, O Indra, O strong hero, grant thou glory to us
with the Maruts, terrible with the terrible ones, strong and a giver of
victory. O Indra, protect thou these bravest of men, let thy anger be
turned away from the Maruts, for thou hast become victorious together
with those brilliant heroes. May we have an invigorating autumn, with
quickening rain!

VIII

O Maruts, that man in whose dwelling you drink the Soma, ye mighty sons
of heaven, he indeed has the best guardians. You who are propitiated
either by sacrifices or from the prayers of the sage, hear the call, O
Maruts! Aye, the powerful man to whom you have granted a sage, he will
live in a stable rich in cattle. On the altar of this strong man Soma is
poured out in daily sacrifices; praise and joy are sung. To him let the
mighty Maruts listen, to him who surpasses all men, as the flowing
rain-clouds pass over the sun. For we, O Maruts, have sacrificed at many
harvests, through the mercies of the storm-gods. May that mortal be
blessed, O chasing Maruts, whose offerings you carry off. You take
notice either of the sweat of him who praises you, ye men of true
strength, or of the desire of the suppliant. O ye of true strength, make
this manifest with might! strike the fiend with your lightning! Hide the
hideous darkness, destroy every tusky fiend. Make the light which we
long for!

IX

Endowed with exceeding vigor and power, the singers, the never
flinching, the immovable, the impetuous, the most beloved and most
manly, have decked themselves with their glittering ornaments, a few
only, like the heavens with the stars. When you have seen your way
through the clefts, like birds, O Maruts, on whatever road it be, then
the clouds on your chariots trickle everywhere, and you pour out the
honey-like fatness for him who praises you. At their racings the earth
shakes, as if broken, when on the heavenly paths they harness their deer
for victory. They the sportive, the roaring, with bright spears, the
shakers of the clouds have themselves glorified their greatness. That
youthful company, with their spotted horses, moves by itself; hence it
exercises lordship, invested with powers. Thou indeed art true, thou
searchest out sin, thou art without blemish. Therefore the manly host
will help this prayer. We speak after the kind of our old father, our
tongue goes forth at the sight of the Soma: when the singers had joined
Indra in deed, then only they took their holy names;--these Maruts,
armed with beautiful rings, obtained splendors for their glory, they
obtained rays, and men to celebrate them; nay, armed with daggers,
speeding along, and fearless, they found the beloved domain of the
Maruts.

X

What then now? When will you take us as a dear father takes his son by
both hands, O ye gods, for whom the sacred grass has been trimmed? Where
now? On what errand of yours are you going, in heaven, not on earth?
Where are your cows sporting? Where are your newest favors, O Maruts?
Where the blessings? Where all delights? If you, sons of Prisni, were
mortals, and your praiser an immortal, then never should your praiser be
unwelcome, like a deer in pasture grass, nor should he go on the path of
Yama. Let not one sin after another, difficult to be conquered, overcome
us; may it depart together with greed. Truly they are terrible and
powerful; even to the desert the Rudriyas bring rain that is never dried
up. The lightning lows like a cow, it follows as a mother follows after
her young, when the shower of the Maruts has been let loose. Even by day
the Maruts create darkness with the water-bearing cloud, when they
drench the earth. Then from the shouting of the Maruts over the whole
space of the earth, men reeled forward. Maruts on your strong-hoofed,
never-wearying steeds go after those bright ones, which are still locked
up. May your fellies be strong, the chariots, and their horses, may your
reins be well-fashioned. Speak forth forever with thy voice to praise
the Lord of prayer, Agni, who is like a friend, the bright one. Fashion
a hymn in thy mouth! Expand like the cloud! Sing a song of praise.
Worship the host of the Maruts, the terrible, the glorious, the musical.
May they be magnified here among us.

XI

Let your voice-born prayers go forth to the great Vishnu, accompanied by
the Maruts, Evayamarut, and to the chasing host, adorned with good
rings, the strong, in their jubilant throng, to the shouting power of
the Maruts. O Maruts, you who are born great, and proclaim it yourselves
by knowledge, Evayamarut, that power of yours cannot be approached by
wisdom, that power of theirs cannot be approached by gift or might; they
are like unapproachable mountains. They who are heard with their voice
from the high heaven, the brilliant and strong, Evayamarut, in whose
council no tyrant reigns, the rushing chariots of these roaring Maruts
come forth, like fires with their own lightning. The wide-striding
Vishnu strode forth from the great common seat, Evayamarut. When he has
started by himself from his own place along the ridges, O ye striving,
mighty Maruts, he goes together with the heroes, conferring blessings.
Impetuous, like your own shout, the strong one made everything tremble,
the terrible, the wanderer, the mighty, Evayamarut; strong with him you
advanced self-luminous, with firm reins, golden colored, well armed,
speeding along. Your greatness is infinite, ye Maruts, endowed with full
power, may that terrible power help, Evayamarut. In your raid you are
indeed to be seen as charioteers; deliver us therefore from the enemy,
like shining fires. May then these Rudras, lively like fires and with
vigorous shine, help, Evayamarut. The seat of the earth is stretched out
far and wide, when the hosts of these faultless Maruts come quickly to
the races. Come kindly on your path, O Maruts, listen to the call of him
who praises you, Evayamarut. Confidants of the great Vishnu, may you
together, like charioteers, keep all hateful things far, by your
wonderful skill. Come zealously to our sacrifice, ye worshipful, hear
our guileless call, Evayamarut. Like the oldest mountains in the sky, O
wise guardians, prove yourselves for him irresistible to the enemy.

XII

O Syavasva, sing boldly with the Maruts, the singers who, worthy
themselves of sacrifice, rejoice in their guileless glory according to
their nature. They are indeed boldly the friends of strong power; they
on their march protect all who by themselves are full of daring. Like
rushing bulls, these Maruts spring over the dark cows, and then we
perceive the might of the Maruts in heaven and on earth. Let us boldly
offer praise and sacrifice to your Maruts, to all them who protect the
generation of men, who protect the mortal from injury. They who are
worthy, bounteous, men of perfect strength, to those heavenly Maruts who
are worthy of sacrifice, praise the sacrifice! The tall men, coming near
with their bright chains, and their weapon, have hurled forth their
spears. Behind these Maruts there came by itself the splendor of heaven,
like laughing lightnings. Those who have grown up on earth, or in the
wide sky, or in the realm of the rivers, or in the abode of the great
heaven, praise that host of the Maruts, endowed with true strength and
boldness, whether those rushing heroes have by themselves harnessed
their horses for triumph, or whether these brilliant Maruts have in the
speckled cloud clothed themselves in wool, or whether by their strength
they cut the mountain asunder with the tire of their chariot; call them
comers, or goers, or enterers, or followers, under all these names, they
watch on the straw for my sacrifice. The men watch, and their steeds
watch. Then, so brilliant are their forms to be soon, that people say,
Look at the strangers! In measured steps and wildly shouting the gleemen
have danced towards the cloud. They who appeared one by one like
thieves, were helpers to me to see the light. Worship, therefore, O
seer, that host of Maruts, and keep and delight them with your voice,
they who are themselves wise poets, tall heroes armed with
lightning-spears. Approach, O seer, the host of Maruts, as a woman
approaches a friend, for a gift; and you, Maruts, bold in your strength,
hasten hither, even from heaven, when you have been praised by our
hymns. If he, after perceiving them, has approached them as gods with an
offering, then may he for a gift remain united with the brilliant
Maruts, who by their ornaments are glorious on their march. They, the
wise Maruts, the lords, who, when there was inquiry for their kindred,
told me of the cow, they told me of Prisni as their mother, and of the
strong Rudra as their father. The seven and seven heroes gave me each a
hundred. On the Yamuna I clear off glorious wealth in cows, I clear
wealth in horses.

XIII

Those who glance forth like wives and yoke-fellows, the powerful sons of
Rudra on their way, they, the Maruts, have indeed made heaven and earth
to grow; they, the strong and wild, delight in the sacrifices. When
grown up, they attained to greatness; the Rudras have established their
seat in the sky. While singing their song and increasing their vigor,
the sons of Prisni have clothed themselves in beauty. When these sons of
the cow adorn themselves with glittering ornaments, the brilliant ones
put bright weapons on their bodies. They drive away every adversary;
fatness streams along their paths;--when you, the powerful, who shine
with your spears, shaking even what is unshakable by strength--when you,
O Maruts, the manly hosts, had yoked the spotted deer, swift as thought,
to your chariots;--when you had yoked the spotted deer before your
chariots, hurling thunderbolt in the fight, then the streams of the
red-horse rush forth: like a skin with water they water the earth. May
the swiftly-gliding, swift-winged horses carry you hither! Come forth
with your arms! Sit down on the grass-pile; a wide seat has been made
for you. Rejoice, O Maruts, in the sweet food. Strong in themselves,
they grew with might; they stepped to the firmament, they made their
seat wide. When Vishnu saved the enrapturing Soma, the Maruts sat down
like birds on their beloved altar. Like heroes indeed thirsting for
fight they rush about; like combatants eager for glory they have striven
in battles. All beings are afraid of the Maruts; they are men terrible
to behold, like kings. When the clever Tvashtar had turned the
well-made, golden, thousand-edged thunderbolt, Indra takes it to perform
his manly deeds; he slew Vritra, he forced out the stream of water. By
their power they pushed the well aloft, they clove asunder the rock,
however strong. Blowing forth their voice the bounteous Maruts
performed, while drunk of Soma, their glorious deeds. They pushed the
cloud athwart this way, they poured out the spring to the thirsty
Gotama. The Maruts with beautiful splendor approach him with help, they
in their own ways satisfied the desire of the sage. The shelters which
you have for him who praises you, grant them threefold to the man who
gives! Extend the same to us, O Maruts! Give us, ye heroes, wealth with
valiant offspring!

XIV

Who are these resplendent men, dwelling together, the boys of Rudra,
also with good horses? No one indeed knows their births, they alone know
each other's birthplace. They plucked each other with their beaks; the
hawks, rushing like the wind, strove together. A wise man understands
these secrets, that Prisni, the great, bore an udder. May that clan be
rich in heroes by the Maruts, always victorious, rich in manhood! They
are quickest to go, most splendid with splendor, endowed with beauty,
strong with strength. Strong is your strength, steadfast your powers,
and thus by the Maruts is this clan mighty. Resplendent is your breath,
furious are the minds of the wild host, like a shouting maniac. Keep
from us entirely your flame, let not your hatred reach us here. I call
on the dear names of your swift ones, so that the greedy should be
satisfied, O Maruts, the well-armed, the swift, decked with beautiful
chains, who themselves adorn their bodies. Bright are the libations for
you, the bright ones, O Maruts, a bright sacrifice I prepare for the
bright. In proper order came those who truly follow the order, the
bright born, the bright, the pure. On your shoulders, O Maruts, are the
rings, on your chests the golden chains are fastened; far-shining like
lightnings with showers, you wield your weapons, according to your wont.
Your hidden splendors come forth; spread out your powers, O racers!
Accept, O Maruts, this thousandfold, domestic share, as an offering for
the house-gods. If you thus listen, O Maruts, to this praise, at the
invocation of the powerful sage, give him quickly a share of wealth in
plentiful offspring, which no selfish enemy shall be able to hurt. The
Maruts, who are fleet like racers, the manly youths, shone like Yakshas;
they are beautiful like boys standing round the hearth, they play about
like calves who are still sucking. May the bounteous Maruts be gracious
to us, opening up to us the firm heaven and earth. May that bolt of
yours which kills cattle and men be far from us! Incline to us, O Vasus,
with your favors. The Hotri priest calls on you again and again, sitting
down and praising your common gift, O Maruts. O strong ones, he who is
the guardian of so much wealth, he calls on you with praises, free from
guile. These Maruts stop the swift, they bend strength by strength, they
ward off the curse of the plotter, and turn their heavy hatred on the
enemy. These Maruts stir up even the sluggard, even the vagrant, as the
gods pleased. O strong ones, drive away the darkness, and grant us all
our kith and kin. May we not fall away from your bounty, O Maruts, may
we not stay behind, O charioteers, in the distribution of your gifts.
Let us share in the brilliant wealth, the well-acquired, that belongs to
you, O strong ones. When valiant men fiercely fight together, for
rivers, plants, and houses, then, O Maruts, sons of Rudra, be in battles
our protectors from the enemy. O Maruts, you have valued the praises
which our fathers have formerly recited to you; with the Maruts the
victor is terrible in battle, with the Maruts alone the racer wins the
prize. O Maruts, may we have a strong son, who is lord among men, a
ruler, through whom we may cross the waters to dwell in safety, and then
obtain our own home for you. May Indra then, Varuna, Mitra, Agni, the
waters, the plants, the trees of the forest be pleased with us. Let us
be in the keeping, in the lap of the Maruts; protect us always with your
favors.

XV

Sing to the company of the Maruts, growing up together, the strong among
the divine host: they stir heaven and earth by their might, they mount
up to the firmament from the abyss of Nirriti. Even your birth was with
fire and fury, O Maruts! You, terrible, wrathful, never tiring! You who
stand forth with might and strength; everyone who sees the sun, fears at
your coming. Grant mighty strength to our lords, if the Maruts are
pleased with our praise. As a trodden path furthers a man, may they
further us; help us with your brilliant favors. Favored by you, O
Maruts, a wise man wins a hundred, favored by you a strong racer wins a
thousand, favored by you a king also kills his enemy: may that gift of
yours prevail, O ye shakers. I invite these bounteous sons of Rudra,
will these Maruts turn again to us? Whatever they hated secretly or
openly, that sin we pray the swift ones to forgive. This praise of our
lords has been spoken: may the Maruts be pleased with this hymn. Keep
far from us, O strong ones, all hatred, protect us always with your
favors!

XVI

Come hither, do not fail, when you march forward! Do not stay away, O
united friends, you who can bend even what is firm. O Maruts,
Ribhukshans, come hither on your flaming strong fellies, O Rudras, come
to us to-day with food, you much-desired ones, come to the sacrifice,
you friends of the Sobharis. For we know indeed the terrible strength of
the sons of Rudra, of the vigorous Maruts, the liberal givers of rain.
The clouds were scattered, but the monster remained, heaven and earth
were joined together. O you who are armed with bright rings, the tracts
of the sky expanded, whenever you stir, radiant with your own splendor.
Even things that cannot be thrown down resound at your race, the
mountains, the lord of the forest--the earth quivers on your marches.
The upper sky makes wide room, to let your violence pass, O Maruts, when
these strong-armed heroes display their energies in their own bodies.
According to their wont these men, exceeding terrible, impetuous, with
strong and unbending forms, bring with them beautiful light. The arrow
of the Sobharis is shot from the bowstrings at the golden chest on the
chariot of the Maruts. They, the kindred of the cow, the well-born,
should enjoy their food, the great ones should help us. Bring forward, O
strongly-anointed priests, your libations to the strong host of the
Maruts, the strongly advancing. O Maruts, O heroes, come quickly hither,
like winged hawks, on your chariot with strong horses, of strong shape,
with strong naves, to enjoy our libations. Their anointing is the same,
the golden chains shine on their arms, their spears sparkle. These
strong, manly, strong-armed Maruts, do not strive among themselves; firm
are the bows, the weapons on your chariot, and on your faces are
splendors. They whose terrible name, wide-spreading like the ocean, is
the one of all that is of use, whose strength is like the vigor of their
father, worship these Maruts, and praise them! Of these shouters, as of
moving spokes, no one is the last; this is theirs by gift, by greatness
is it theirs. Happy is he who was under your protection, O Maruts, in
former mornings, or who may be so even now. Or he, O men, whose
libations you went to enjoy; that mighty one, O shakers, will obtain
your favors with brilliant riches and booty. As the sons of Rudra, the
servants of the divine Dyu, will it, O youths, so shall it be. Whatever
liberal givers may worship the Maruts, and move about together as
generous benefactors, even from them turn towards us with a kinder
heart, you youths! O Sobhari, call loud with your newest song the young,
strong, and pure Maruts, as the plougher calls the cows. Worship the
Maruts with a song, they who are strong like a boxer, called in to
assist those who call for him in all fights; worship them the most
glorious, like bright-shining bulls. Yes, O united friends, kindred, O
Maruts, by a common birth, the oxen lick one another's humps. O ye
dancers, with golden ornaments on your chests, even a mortal comes to
ask for your brotherhood; take care of us, ye Maruts, for your
friendship lasts forever. O bounteous Maruts, bring us some of your
Marut-medicine, you friends, and steeds. With the favors whereby you
favor the Sindhu, whereby you save, whereby you help Krivi, with those
propitious favors be our delight, O delightful ones, ye who never hate
your followers. O Maruts, for whom we have prepared good altars,
whatever medicine there is on the Sindhu, on the Asikni, in the seas, on
the mountains, seeing it, you carry it all on your bodies. Bless us with
it! Down to the earth, O Maruts, with what hurts our sick
one--straighten what is crooked!

XVII

Full of devotion like priests with their prayers, wealthy like pious
men, who please the gods with their offerings, beautiful to behold like
brilliant kings, without a blemish like the youths of our hamlets--they
who are gold-breasted like Agni with his splendor, quick to help like
self-harnessed winds, good leaders like the oldest experts, they are to
the righteous man like Somas, that yield the best protection. They who
are roaring and hasting like winds, brilliant like the tongues of fires,
powerful like mailed soldiers, full of blessings like the prayers of our
fathers, who hold together like the spokes of chariot-wheels, who glance
forward like victorious heroes, who scatter ghrita like wooing youths,
who chant beautifully like singers, intoning a hymn of praise, who are
swift like the best of horses, who are bounteous like lords of chariots
on a suit, who are hastening on like water with downward floods, who are
like the manifold Angiras with their numerous songs. These noble sons of
Sindhu are like grinding-stones, they are always like Soma-stones,
tearing everything to pieces; these sons of a good mother are like
playful children, they are by their glare like a great troop on its
march. Illumining the sacrifice like the rays of the dawn, they shone
forth in their ornaments like triumphant warriors; the Maruts with
bright spears seem like running rivers, from afar they measure many
miles. O gods, make us happy and rich, prospering us, your praisers, O
Maruts! Remember our praise and our friendship, for from of old there
are always with you gifts of treasures.

XVIII

O Indra, a thousand have been thy helps accorded to us, a thousand, O
driver of the bays, have been thy most delightful viands. May thousands
of treasures richly to enjoy, may goods come to us a thousandfold. May
the Maruts come towards us with their aids, the mighty ones, or with
their best aids from the great heaven, now that their furthest steeds
have rushed forth on the distant shore of the sea; there clings to the
Maruts one who moves in secret, like a man's wife,[2] and who is like a
spear carried behind, well grasped, resplendent, gold-adorned; there is
also with them Vak,[3] like unto a courtly, eloquent woman. Far away the
brilliant, untiring Maruts cling to their young maid, as if she belonged
to them all; but the terrible ones did not drive away Rodasi, for they
wished her to grow their friend. When the divine Rodasi with dishevelled
locks, the manly-minded, wished to follow them, she went, like Surya,[4]
to the chariot of her servant, with terrible look, as with the pace of a
cloud. As soon as the poet with the libations, O Maruts, had sung his
song at the sacrifice, pouring out Soma, the youthful men placed the
young maid in their chariot as their companion for victory, mighty in
assemblies. I praise what is the praiseworthy true greatness of those
Maruts, that the manly-minded, proud, and strong one drives with them
towards the blessed mothers. They protect Mitra and Varuna from the
unspeakable, and Aryaman also finds out the infamous. Even what is firm
and unshakable is being shaken; but he who dispenses treasures, O
Maruts, has grown in strength. No people indeed, whether near to us, or
from afar, have ever found the end of your strength, O Maruts! The
Maruts, strong in daring strength, have, like the sea, boldly surrounded
their haters. May we to-day, may we tomorrow in battle be called the
most beloved of Indra. We were so formerly, may we truly be so day by
day, and may the lord of the Maruts be with us. May this praise, O
Maruts, this song of Mandarya, the son of Mana, the poet, ask you with
food for offspring for ourselves! May we have an invigorating autumn,
with quickening rain!

XIX

Who knows their birth? or who was of yore in the favor of the Maruts,
when they harnessed the spotted deer? Who has heard them when they had
mounted their chariots, how they went forth? For the sake of what
liberal giver did they run, and their comrades followed, as streams of
rain filled with food? They themselves said to me when day by day they
came to the feast with their birds: they are manly youths and blameless;
seeing them, praise them thus; they who shine by themselves in their
ornaments, their daggers, their garlands, their golden chains, their
rings, going on their chariots and on dry land. O Maruts, givers of
quickening rain, I am made to rejoice, following after your chariots, as
after days going with rain. The bucket which the bounteous heroes shook
down from heaven for their worshipper, that cloud they send along heaven
and earth, and showers follow on the dry land. The rivers having pierced
the air with a rush of water, went forth like milk-cows; when your
spotted deer roll about like horses that have hasted to the
resting-place on their road. Come hither, O Maruts, from heaven, from
the sky, even from near; do not go far away! Let not the Rasa, the
Anitabha, the Kubha, the Krumu, let not the Sindhu delay you! Let not
the marshy Sarayu prevent you! May your favor be with us alone! The
showers come forth after the host of your chariots, after the terrible
Marut-host of the ever-youthful heroes. Let us then follow with our
praises and our prayers each host of yours, each troop, each company. To
what well-born generous worshipper have the Maruts gone to-day on that
march, on which you bring to kith and kin the never-failing seed of
corn? Give us that for which we ask you, wealth and everlasting
happiness! Let us safely pass through our revilers, leaving behind the
unspeakable and the enemies. Let us be with you when in the morning you
shower down health, wealth, water, and medicine, O Maruts! That mortal,
O men, O Maruts, whom you protect, may well be always beloved by the
gods, and rich in valiant offspring. May we be such! Praise the liberal
Maruts, and may they delight on the path of this man here who praises
them, like cows in fodder. When they go, call after them as for old
friends, praise them who love you, with your song!

XX

You have fashioned this speech for the brilliant Marut-host which shakes
the mountains: celebrate then the great manhood in honor of that host
who praises the warm milk of the sacrifice, and sacrifices on the height
of heaven, whose glory is brilliant. O Maruts, your powerful men came
forth searching for water, invigorating, harnessing their horses,
swarming around. When they aim with the lightning, Trita shouts, and the
waters murmur, running around on their course. These Maruts are men
brilliant with lightning, they shoot with thunderbolts, they blaze with
the wind, they shake the mountains, and suddenly, when wishing to give
water, they whirl the hail; they have thundering strength, they are
robust, they are ever-powerful. When you drive forth the nights, O
Rudras, the days, O powerful men, the sky, the mists, ye shakers, the
plains, like ships, and the strongholds, O Maruts, you suffer nowhere.
That strength of yours, O Maruts, that greatness extended as far as the
sun extends its daily course, when you, like your deer on their march,
went down to the western mountain with untouched splendor. Your host, O
Maruts, shone forth when, O sages, you strip, like a caterpillar, the
waving tree. Conduct then, O friends, our service to a good end, as the
eye conducts the man in walking. That man, O Maruts, is not overpowered,
he is not killed, he does not fail, he does not shake, he does not drop,
his goods do not perish, nor his protections, if you lead him rightly,
whether he be a seer or a king. The men with their steeds, like
conquerors of clans, like Aryaman, the Maruts, carrying waterskins, fill
the well; when the strong ones roar, they moisten the earth with the
juice of sweetness. When the Maruts come forth this earth bows, the
heaven bows, the paths in the sky bow, and the cloud-mountains with
their quickening rain. When you rejoice at sunrise, O Maruts, toiling
together, men of sunlight, men of heaven, your horses never tire in
running, and you quickly reach the end of your journey. On your
shoulders are the spears, on your feet rings, on your chests golden
chains, O Maruts, on your chariot gems; fiery lightnings in your fists,
and golden headbands tied round your heads. O Maruts, you shake the red
apple from the firmament, whose splendor no enemy can touch; the hamlets
bowed when the Maruts blazed, and the pious people intoned their
far-reaching shout. O wise Maruts, let us carry off the wealth of food
which you have bestowed on us; give us, O Maruts, such thousandfold
wealth as never fails, like the star Tishya from heaven! O Maruts, you
protect our wealth of excellent men, and the seer, clever in song; you
give to the warrior a strong horse, you make the king to be obeyed. O
you who are quickly ready to help, I implore you for wealth whereby we
may overshadow all men, like the sky. O Maruts, be pleased with this
word of mine, and let us speed by its speed over a hundred winters!

XXI

The chasing Maruts with gleaming spears, the golden-breasted, have
gained great strength, they move along on quick, well-broken
horses;--when they went in triumph, the chariots followed. You have
yourselves, you know, acquired power; you shine bright and wide, you
great ones. They have even measured the sky with their strength;--when
they went in triumph, the chariots followed. The strong heroes, born
together, and nourished together, have further grown to real beauty.
They shine brilliantly like the rays of the sun;--when they went in
triumph, the chariots followed. Your greatness, O Maruts, is to be
honored, it is to be yearned for like the sight of the sun. Place us
also in immortality;--when they went in triumph, the chariots followed.
O Maruts, you raise the rain from the sea, and rain it down, O yeomen!
Your milch-cows, O destroyers, are never destroyed;--when they went in
triumph, the chariots followed. When you have joined the deer as horses
to the shafts, and have clothed yourselves in golden garments, then, O
Maruts, you scatter all enemies;--when they went in triumph, the
chariots followed. Not mountains, not rivers have kept you back,
wherever you see, O Maruts, there you go. You go even round heaven and
earth;--when they went in triumph, the chariots followed. Be it old, O
Maruts, or be it new, be it spoken, O Vasus, or be it recited, you take
cognizance of it all;--when they went in triumph, the chariots followed.
Have mercy on us, O Maruts, do not strike us, extend to us your manifold
protection. Do remember the praise, the friendship;--when they went in
triumph, the chariots followed. Lead us, O Maruts, towards greater
wealth, and out of tribulations, when you have been praised. O
worshipful Maruts, accept our offering, and let us be lords of
treasures!

XXII

O Agni, on to the strong host of the Maruts, bedecked with golden chains
and ornaments. To-day I call the folk of the Maruts down from the light
of heaven. As thou, Agni, thinkest in thine heart, to the same object my
wishes have gone. Strengthen thou these Maruts, terrible to behold, who
have come nearest to thy invocations. Like a bountiful lady, the earth
comes towards us, staggering, yet rejoicing; for your onslaught, O
Maruts, is vigorous, like a bear, and fearful, like a wild bull. They
who by their strength disperse wildly like bulls, impatient of the yoke,
they by their marches make the heavenly stone, the rocky mountain cloud
to shake. Arise, for now I call with my hymns the troop of these Maruts,
grown strong together, the manifold, the incomparable, as if calling a
drove of bulls. Harness the red mares to the chariot, harness the ruddy
horses to the chariots, harness the two bays, ready to drive in the
yoke, most vehement to drive in the yoke. And this red stallion too,
loudly neighing, has been placed here, beautiful to behold; may it not
cause you delay on your marches, O Maruts; spur him forth on your
chariots.

We call towards us the glorious chariot of the Maruts, whereon there
stands also Rodasi, carrying delightful gifts, among the Maruts.

I call hither this your host, brilliant on chariots, terrible and
glorious, among which she, the well-born and fortunate, the bounteous
lady, is also magnified among the Maruts.

XXIII

O Rudras, joined by Indra, friends on golden chariots, come hither for
our welfare! This prayer from us is acceptable to you like the springs
of heaven to a thirsty soul longing for water. O you sons of Prisni, you
are armed with daggers and spears, you are wise, carrying good bows and
arrows and quivers, possessed of good horses and chariots. With your
good weapons, O Maruts, you go to triumph! You shake the sky and the
mountains for wealth to the liberal giver; the forests bend down out of
your way from fear. O sons of Prisni, you rouse the earth when you, O
terrible ones, have harnessed the spotted deer for triumph! The Maruts,
blazing with the wind, clothed in rain, are as like one another as
twins, and well adorned. They have tawny horses, and red horses, they
are faultless, endowed with exceeding vigor; they are in greatness wide
as the heaven. Rich in rain-drops, well adorned, bounteous, terrible to
behold, of inexhaustible wealth, noble by birth, golden-breasted, these
singers of the sky have obtained their immortal name. Spears are on your
two shoulders, in your arms are placed strength, power, and might. Manly
thoughts dwell in your heads, on your chariots are weapons, and every
beauty has been laid on your bodies. O Maruts, you have given us wealth
of cows, horses, chariots, and heroes, golden wealth! O men of Rudra,
bestow on us great praise, and may I enjoy your divine protection! Hark,
O heroes, O Maruts! Be gracious to us! You who are of great bounty,
immortal, righteous, truly listening to us, poets, young, dwelling on
mighty mountains, and grown mighty.

XXIV

I praise now the powerful company of these ever-young Maruts, who drive
violently along with quick horses; aye, the sovereigns are lords of
Amrita the immortal. The terrible company, the powerful, adorned with
quoits on their hands, given to roaring, potent, dispensing treasures,
they who are beneficent, infinite in greatness, praise, O poet, these
men of great wealth! May your water-carriers come here to-day, all the
Maruts who stir up the rain. That fire which has been lighted for you, O
Maruts, accept it, O young singers! O worshipful Maruts, you create for
man an active king, fashioned by Vibhvan; from you comes the man who can
fight with his fist, and is quick with his arm, from you the man with
good horses and valiant heroes. Like the spokes of a wheel, no one is
last, like the days they are born on and on, not deficient in might. The
very high sons of Prisni are full of fury, the Maruts cling firmly to
their own will. When you have come forth with your speckled deer as
horses on strong-fellied chariots, O Maruts, the waters gush, the
forests go asunder;--let Dyu roar down, the bull of the Dawn. At their
approach, even the earth opened wide, and they placed their own strength
as a husband the germ. Indeed they have harnessed the winds as horses to
the yoke, and the men of Rudra have changed their sweat into rain. Hark,
O heroes, O Maruts! Be gracious to us! You who are of great bounty,
immortal, righteous, truly listening to us, poets, young, dwelling on
mighty mountains, and grown mighty.

XXV

They truly tried to make you grant them welfare. Do thou sing praises to
Heaven, I offer sacrifice to the Earth. The Maruts wash their horses and
race to the air, they soften their splendor by waving mists. The earth
trembles with fear from their onset. She sways like a full ship, that
goes rolling. The heroes who appear on their marches, visible from afar,
strive together within the great sacrificial assembly. Your horn is
exalted for glory, as the horns of cows; your eye is like the sun, when
the mist is scattered. Like strong racers, you are beautiful, O heroes,
you think of glory, like manly youths. Who could reach, O Maruts, the
great wise thoughts, who the great manly deeds of you, great ones? You
shake the earth like a speck of dust, when you are carried forth for
granting welfare. These kinsmen are like red horses, like heroes eager
for battle, and they have rushed forward to fight. They are like
well-grown manly youths, and the men have grown strong, with streams of
rain they dim the eye of the sun. At their outbreak there is none among
them who is the eldest, or the youngest, or the middle: they have grown
by their own might, these sons of Prisni, noble by birth, the boys of
Dyaus; come hither to us!

Those who like birds flew with strength in rows from the ridge of the
mighty heaven to its ends, their horses shook the springs of the
mountain cloud, so that people on both sides knew it. May Dyaus Aditi
roar for our feast, may the dew-lighted Dawns come striving together;
these, the Maruts, O poet, the sons of Rudra, have shaken the heavenly
bucket cloud, when they had been praised.





Next: To The Maruts And Indra

Previous: To The Unknown God



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