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Rigveda 6:21-40

From the Hymns of the Rigveda, based on Ralph Griffith's translation of 1889, re-edited somewhat by Tormod Kinnes.

21 - Indra. Visvedevas

THESE the most constant singer's invocations call you who are to be invoked, hero;

Hymns call anew the chariot-borne, Eternal: by eloquence men gain abundant riches. [1]

I praise that Indra, known to all men, honoured with songs, extolled with hymns at sacrifices,

Whose majesty, rich in wondrous arts, surpasss the magnitude of earth, and heaven in greatness. [2]

He has made pathways, with the Sun to aid him, throughout the darkness that extended pathless.

Mortals who yearn to worship never dishonour, Mighty God, your Law who are immortal. [3]

And he who did these things, where is that Indra? among what tribes? what people doth he visit?

What sacrifice contents your mind , and wishes? What priest among them all? what hymn, Indra? [4]

Yea, here were they who, born of old, have served you, your friends of ancient time, you active Worker.

Bethink you now of these, Invoked of many! the midmost and the recent, and the youngest. [5]

Inquiring after him, your later servants, Indra, have gained your former old traditions.

Hero, to whom the prayer is brought, we praise you as great for that wherein we know you mighty. [6]

The demon's strength is gathered fast against you: great as that strength has grown, go forth to meet it.

With your own ancient friend and companion, the thunderbolt, brave Champion! drive it backward. [7]

Hear, too, the prayer of this your present beadsman, Indra, hero, cherishing the singer.

For you were aye our fathers' friend aforetime, still swift to listen to their supplication. [8]

Bring to our help this day, for our protection, Varuna, Mitra , Indra, and the Maruts,

Pusan and Visnu, Agni and Purandhi, Savitar also, and the Plants and Mountains. [9]

The singers here exalt with hymns and praises you who art very Mighty and Most Holy.

Hear, when invoked, the invoker's invocation. Beside you there is none like you, immortal! [10]

Now to my words come quickly you who know, Son of Strength, with all who claim our worship,

Who visit sacred rites, whose tongue is Agni, gods who made Manu stronger than the Dasyu. [11]

On good and evil ways be you our Leader, you who are known to all as Path-preparer.

Bring power to us, Indra, with your horses, steeds that are best to draw, broad-backed, unwearied.

22 - Indra

WITH these my hymns I glorify that Indra who is alone to be invoked by mortals,

The Lord, the Mighty One, of manly vigour, victorious, hero, true, and full of wisdom. [1]

Our sires of old,. Navagvas, sages seven, while urging him to show his might, extolled him,

Dwelling on heights, swift, smiting down opponents, guileless in word, and in his thoughts most mighty. [2]

We seek that Indra to obtain his riches that bring much food, and men, and store of heroes.

Bring us, Lord of bay steeds, to make us joyful, celestial wealth, abundant, undecaying. [3]

Tell us this, if at your hand aforetime the earlier singers have obtained good fortune,

What is your share and portion, Strong Subduer, Asura-slayer, rich, invoked of many? [4]

He who for car-borne Indra, armed with thunder, has a hymn, craving, deeply-piercing, fluent,

Who sends a song effectual, firmly-grasping, and strength-bestowing, he comes near the mighty. [5]

Strong of yourself, you by this art have shattered, with thought-swift Parvata, him who waxed against you,

And, Mightiest! roaring! boldly rent in pieces things that were firmly fixed and never shaken. [6]

Him will we fit for you with new devotion, the strongest Ancient One, in ancient manner.

So may that Indra, boundless, faithful Leader, conduct us over all places hard to traverse. [7]

You for the people who oppress have kindled the earthly firmament and that of heaven.

With heat, Bull, on every side consume them: heat earth and flood for him who hates devotion. [8]

Of all the Heavenly Folk, of earthly creatures you are the King, god of splendid aspect.

In your right hand, Indra, grasp die thunder: Eternal! you destroyest all enchantments. [9]

Give us confirmed prosperity, Indra, vast and exhaustless for the foe's subduing.

Strengthen therewith the Arya's hate and Dasa's, and let the arms of Nahusas be mighty. [10]

Come with your team which brings all blessings here, Disposer, much-invoked, exceeding holy.

You whom no fiend, no God can stay or hinder, come swittly with these steeds in my direction.

23 - Indra

You are attached to pressed-out Soma, Indra, at laud, at prayer, and when the hymn is chanted;

Or when with yoked Bays, Maghavan, you come, Indra, bearing in your arms the thunder. [1]

Or when on that decisive day you holpest the presser of the juice at Vritra's slaughter;

Or when you, while the strong one feared, undaunted, gavest to death, Indra, the daring Dasyus. [2]

Let Indra drink the pressed-out Soma, helper and mighty Guide of him who sings his praises.

He gives the hero room who pours oblations, and treasure even to the lowly singer. [3]

Even humble rites with his bay steeds he visits: he wields the bolt, drinks Soma, gives us cattle.

He makes the valiant rich in store of heroes, accepts our praise and hears the singer's calling. [4]

What he has longed for we have brought tIndra, who from the days of old has done us service.

While Soma flows we will sing hymn, and laud him, so that our prayer may streng. then Indra's vigour. [5]

You have made prayer the means of yours exalting, therefore we wait on you with hymns, Indra.

May we, by the pressed Soma, Somadrinker! bring you, with sacrifice, blissful sweet refreshment. [6]

Mark well our sacrificial cake, delighted Indra, drink Soma and the milk commingled.

Here on the sacrificer's grass be seated: give ample room to your devoted servant. [7]

Mighty One, be joyful as you willest. Let these our sacrifices reach and find you;

And may this hymn and these our invocations turn you, whom many men invoke, to help us. [8]

Friends, when thejuices flow, replenish duly your own, your bounteous Indra with the soma.

Will it not aid him to support us? Indra. spares him who sheds the juice to win his favour. [9]

While Soma flowed, thus Indra has been lauded, Ruler of nobles, mid the Bharadvajas,

That Indra may become the singer's patron and give him wealth in every kind of treasure.

24 - Indra

STRONG rapturous joy, praise, glory are with Indra: impetuous God, he quaffs the juice of soma:

That Maghavan whom men must laud with singing, Heaven-dweller, King of songs, whose help is lasting. [1]

He, friend of man, most wise, victorious hero, hears, with far-reaching aid, the singer call him.

Excellent, Praise of Men, the bard's Supporter, Strong, he gives strength, extolled in holy synod. [2]

The lofty axle of your wheels, hero, is not surpassed by heaven and earth in greatness.

Like branches of a tree, Invoked of many manifold aids spring forth from you, Indra. [3]

Strong Lord, your energies, endowed with vigour, are like the paths of kine converging homeward.

Like bonds of cord, Indra, that bind the younglings, no bonds are they, you of boundless bounty. [4]

One act to-day, another act tomorrow oft Indra makes what is not yet existeni.

Here have we Mitra, Varuna, and Pusan to overcome the foeman's domination. [5]

By song and sacrifice men brought the waters from you, as from a mountain's ridge, Indra.

Urging your might, with these fair lauds they seek you, theme of song, as horses rush to battle. [6]

That Indra whom nor months nor autumn seasons wither with age, nor fleeting days enfeeble,

Still may his body Wax, even now so mighty, glorified by the lauds and hymns that praise him. [7]

Extolled, he bends not to the strong, the steadfast, nor to the bold incited by the Dasyu.

High mountains are as level plains tIndra: even in the deep he finds firm ground to rest on. [8]

Impetuous Speeder through all depth and distance, give strengthening food, you drinker of the juices.

Stand up erect to help us, unreluctant, what time the gloom of night brightens to morning. [9]

Hasting to help, come here and protect him, keep him from harm when he is here, Indra.

At home, abroad, from injury preserve him. May brave sons gladden us through a hundred winters.

25 - Indra

WITH your assistance, you Mighty Indra, be it the least, the midmost, or the highest,

Great with those aids and by these powers support us, Strong God! in battle that subdues our foemen. [1]

With these discomfit hosts that fight against us, and check the opponent's wrath, yourself uninjured.

With these chase all our foes to every quarter: subdue the tribes of Dasas to the Arya. [2]

Those who array themselves as foes to smite us, Indra, be they kin or be they strangers,

Strike you their manly strength that it be feeble, and drive in headlong flight our foemen backward. [3]

With strength of limb the hero slays the hero, when bright in arms they range them for the combat.

When two opposing hosts contend in battle for seed and offspring, waters, kine, or corn-lands. [4]

Yet no strong man has conquered you, no hero, no brave, no warrior trusting in his valour.

Not one of these is match for you, Indra. You far surpassest all these living creatures. [5]

He is the Lord of both these armies' valour when the commanders call them to the conflict:

When with their ranks expanded they are fighting with a great foe or for a home with heroes. [6]

And when the people stir themselves for battle, be you their saviour, Indra, and protector,

And theirs, your manliest of our friends, the pious, the chiefs who have installed us priests, Indra. [7]

To you for high dominion has been for evermore, for slaughtering the Vritras,

All lordly power and might, Holy Indra, given by gods for victory in battle. [8]

So urge our hosts together in the combats: yield up the godless bands that fight against us.

Singing, at morn may we find you with favour, yea, Indra, and even now, we Bharadvajas.

26 - Indra

INDRA, hear us. Raining down the soma, we call on you to win us mighty valour.

Give us strong succour on the day of trial, when the tribes gather on the field of battle. [1]

The warrior, son of warrior sire, invokes you, to gain great strength that may be won as booty:

To you, the brave man's Lord, the fiends' subduer, he looks when fighting hand to hand for cattle. [2]

You did impel the sage to win the daylight, did ruin Susna for the pious Kutsa.

The invulnerable demon's head you clavest when you wouldst win the praise of Atithigva. [3]

The lofty battle-car you brought forward; you holpest Dasadyu the strong when fighting.

Along with Vetasu you slew Tugra, and made Tuji strong, who praised you, Indra. [4]

You made good the laud, what time you rent a hundred thousand fighting foes, hero,

Slew the Dasa Sambara of the mountain, and with strange aids did succour Divodasa. [5]

Made glad with Soma-draughts and faith, you sentest Cumuri to his sleep, to please Dabhiti.

You, kindly giving Raji to Pithinas, slew with might, at once, the sixty thousand. [6]

May I too, with the liberal chiefs, Indra, acquire your blin supreme and domination,

When, Mightiest! hero-girt! Nahusa heroes boast them in you, the triply-strong Defender. [7]

So may we he your friends, your best beloved, Indra, at this holy invocation.

Best be Pratardani, illustrious ruler, in slaying foemen and in gaining riches.

27 - Indra

WHAT deed has Indra done in the wild transport, in quaffing or in friendship with, the soma?

What joys have men of ancient times or recent obtained within the chamber of libation? [1]

In its wild joy Indra has proved him faithful, faithful in quaffing, faithful in its friendship.

His truth is the delight that in this chamber the men of old and recent times have tasted. [2]

All your vast power, Maghavan, we know not, know not the riches of your full abundance.

No one has seen that might of yours, productive of bounty every day renewed, Indra. [3]

This one great power of yours our eyes have witnessed, wherewith you slew Varasikha's children,

When by the force of your descending thunder, at the mere solund, their boldest was demolished. [4]

In aid of Abhyavartin Cayamana, Indra destroyed the seed of Varasikha.

At Hariyupiya he smote the vanguard of the Vrcivans, and the rear fled frighted. [5]

Three thousand, mailed, in quest of fame, together, on the Yavyavati, much-sought Indra,

Vrcivan's sons, falling before the arrow, like bursting vessels went to their destruction. [6]

He, whose two red Steers, seeking goodly pasture, plying their tongues move on 'twixt earth and heaven,

Gave Turvasa to Srnjaya, and, to aid him, gave the Vrcivans up to Daivavata. [7]

Two wagon-teams, with damsels, twenty oxen, Agni, Abhydvartin Cayamdna,

The liberal Sovran, givs me. This guerdon of Prthu's seed is hard to win from others.

28 - Cows

THE Kine have come and brought good fortune: let them rest in the cow-pen and be happy near us.

Here let them stay prolific, many-coloured, and yield through many morns their milk for Indra. [1]

Indra aids him who offers sacrifice and gifts: he takes not what is his, and gives him more thereto.

Increasing ever more and ever more his wealth, he makes the pious dwell within unbroken bounds. [2]

These are never lost, no robber ever injures them: no evil-minded foe attempts to harass them.

The master of the Kine lives many a year with these, the Cows by which he pours his gifts and serves the gods. [3]

The charger with his dusty brow overtakes them not, and never to the shambles do they take their way.

These Cows, the cattle of the pious worshipper, roam over widespread pasture where no danger is. [4]

To me the Cows seem Bhaga, they seem Indra, they seem a portion of the first-poured Soma.

These present Cows, they, you Indra. I long for Indra with my heart and spirit. [5]

Cows, you fatten even the worn and wasted, and make the unlovely beautiful tolook on.

Prosper my house, you with auspicious voices. Your power is glorified in our assemblies. [6]

Crop goodly pasturage and be prolific drink pure sweet water at good drinking places.

Never be thief or sinful man your matter, and may the dart of Rudra still avoid you. [7]

Now let this close admixture be close intermigled with these Cows,

Mixt with the Steer's prolific flow, and, Indra, with your hero might.

29 - Indra

YOUR men have followed Indra for his friendship, and for his loving-kindness glorified him.

For he bestows great wealth, the Thunder-wielder: worship him, Great and Kind, to win his favour. [1]

Him to whose hand, men closely cling, and drivers stand on his golden chariot firmly stationed.

With his firm arms he holds the reins; his horses, the stallions, are yoked ready for the journey. [2]

Your devotees embrace your feet for glory. Bold, thunder-armed, rich, through your strength, in guerdon,

Robed in a garment fair as heaven to look on, you have displayed you like an active dancer. [3]

That Soma when effused has best consistence, for which the food is dressed and grain is mingled;

By which the men who pray, extolling Indra chief favourites of gods, recite their praises. [4]

No limit of your might has been appointed, which by its greatness sundered earth and heaven.

These the Prince fills full with strong endeavour, driving, as it were, with help his flocks to waters. [5]

So be the lofty Indra prompt to listen, helper unaided, golden-visored hero.

Yea, so may he, shown forth in might unequalled, smite down the many Vritras and the Dasyus.

30 - Indra

INDRA has waxed yet more for hero prowess, alone, Eternal, he bestows treasures.

Indra transcends both the worlds in greatness: one half of him equalls earth and heaven. [1]

Yea, mighty I esteem his godlike nature: none hinders what he has once determined.

Near and afar he spread and set the regions, and every day the Sun became apparent. [2]

Even now endures your exploit of the Rivers, when, Indra, for their floods you clavest passage.

Like men who sit at meat the mountains settled: by you, Most Wise! the regions were made steadfast. [3]

This is the truth, none else is like you, Indra, no God superior to you, no mortal.

You slew Ahi who besieged the waters, and lettest loose the streams to hurry seaward. [4]

Indra, you break up the floods and portals on all sides, and the firmness of the mountain.

You are the King of men, of all that lives, engendering at once Sun, Heaven, and Morning.

31 - Indra

SOLE Lord of wealth are you, Lord of riches: you in your hands have held the people, Indra!

Men have invoked you with contending voices for seed and waters, progeny and sunlight. [1]

Through fear of you, Indra, all the regions of earth, though naught may move them, shake and tremble.

All that is firm is frightened at your coming, -the earth, the heaven, the mountain, and the forest. [2]

With Kutsa, Indra! you did conquer Susna, voracious, bane of crops, in fight for cattle.

In the close fray you rent him: you stolest the Sun's wheel and did drive away misfortunes. [3]

You smote to the ground the hundred castles, impregnable, of Sambara the Dasyu,

When, Strong, with might you holpest Divodasa who poured libations out, Soma-buyer, and made Bharadvaja rich who praised you. [4]

As such, true hero, for great joy of battle mount your terrific car, Brave and Manly.

Come with your help to me, you distant Roamer, and, glorious God, spread among men my glory.

32 - Indra

I WITH my lips have fashioned for this hero words never matched, most plentiful and auspicious,

For him the Ancient, Great, Strong, Energetic, the very mighty Wielder of the Thunder. [1]

Amid the sages, with the Sun he brightened the Parents: glorified, he burst the mountain;

And, roaring with the holy-thoughted singers, he loosed the bond that held the beams of Morning. [2]

Famed for great deeds, with priests who kneel and laud him, he still has conquered in the frays for cattle,

And broken down the forts, the Fort-destroyer, a friend with friends, a Sage among the sages. [3]

Come with your girthed mares, with abundant vigour and plenteous strength to him who sings your praises.

Come here, borne by mares with many heroes, Lover of song! Steer! for the people's welfare. [4]

Indra with rush and might, sped by his coursers, has swiftly won the waters from the southward.

Thus set at liberty the rivers daily flow to their goal, incessant and exhaustless.

33 - Indra

GIVE us the rapture that is mightiest, Indra, prompt to bestow and swift to aid, hero,

That wins with brave steeds where brave steeds encounter, and quells the Vritras and the foes in battle. [1]

For with loud voice the tribes invoke you, Indra, to aid them in the battlefield of heroes.

You, with the singers, have pierced through the Panis: the charger whom you aidest wins the booty. [2]

Both races, Indra, of opposing foemen, hero, both the Arya and the Dasa,

Have you struck down like woods with well-shot lightnings: you rent them in fight, most manly Chieftain! [3]

Indra, befriend us with no scanty succour, prosper and aid us, Loved of all that lives,

When, fighting for the sunlight, we invoke you, hero, in the fray, in war's division. [4]

Be ours, Indra, now and for the future, be graciously inclined and near to help us.

Thus may we, singing, sheltered by the Mighty, win many cattle on the day of trial.

34 - Indra

FULL Many songs have met in you, Indra, and many a noble thought from you proceedeth.

Now and of old the eulogies of sages, their holy hymns and lauds, have yearned for Indra. [1]

He, praised of many, bold, invoked of many, alone is glorified at sacrifices.

Like a car harnessed for some great achievement, Indra must be the cause of our rejoicing. [2]

They make their way tIndra and exalt him, bim whom no prayers and no laudations trouble;

For when a hundred or a thousand singers. laud him who loves the song their praise delights him. [3]

As brightness mingles with the Moon in heaven, the offered Soma yearns to mix with Indra.

Like water brought to men in desert places, our gifts at sacrifice have still refreshed him. [4]

To him this mighty eulogy, tIndra has this our laud been uttered by the poets,

That in the great encounter with the foemen, Loved of all life, Indra may guard and help us.

35 - Indra

WHEN shall our prayers rest in your car beside you? When do you give the singer food for thousands?

When will you clothe this poet's laud with plenty, and when will you enrich our hymns with booty? [1]

When will you gatber men with men, Indra, heroes with heroes, and prevail in combat?

You shall win triply kine in frays for cattle, so, Indra, give us celestial glory. [2]

Yea, when will you, Indra, you Most Mighty, make the prayer all-sustaining for the singer?

When will you yoke, as we yoke songs, your horses, and come to offerings that bring wealth in cattle? [3]

Grant to the Singer food with store of cattle, splendid with horses and the fame of riches.

Send food to swell the milch-cow good at milking: bright be its shine among the Bharadvajas. [4]

Lead otherwise this present foeman, Sakra! Hence are you praised as hero, foe destroyer

Him who gives pure gifts may I praise unceasing. Sage, quicken the Angirases by devotion.

36 - Indra

YOUR raptures ever were for all men's profit: so evermore have been your earthly riches.

You still have been the dealer-forth of vigour, since among gods you have had power and Godhead. [1]

Men have obtained his strength by sacrificing, and ever urged him, on to hero valour.

For the rein-seizing, the impetuous Charger they furnished power even for Vritra's slaughter. [2]

Associate with him, as teams of horses, help, manly might, and vigour follow Indra.

As rivers reach the sea, so, strong with praises, our holy songs reach him the Comprehensive. [3]

Lauded by us, let flow the spring, Indra, of excellent and brightly-shining riches.

For you are Lord of men, without an equal: of all the world you are the only Sovran. [4]

Hear what you may hear, you who, fain for worship, as heaven girds earth, guardest your servant's treasure;

Tlat you may be our own, joying in power, famed through your might in every generation.

37 - Indra

LET your bay horses, yoked, mighty Indra, bring your car here fraught with every blessing.

For you, the Heavenly, even the poor invoketh: may we this day, your feast-companions, prosper. [1]

Forth to the vat the brown drops flow for service, and purified proceed directly forward.

May Indra drink of this, our guest aforetime, Celestial King of the strong draught of soma. [2]

Bringing us hereward all-potent Indra on well-wheeled chariot, may the steeds who bear him

Convey him on the road direct to glory, and never may Vayu's Amrta cease and fail him. [3]

Supreme, he stirs this man to give the guerdon,-Indra, most efficacious of the princes,

Wherewith, Thunderer, you removest sorrow, and, Bold One! partest wealth among the nobles. [4]

Indra is hewho gives enduring vigour: may our songs magnify the god Most Mighty.

Best Vritra-slayer be the HerIndra these things he gives as Prince, with strong endeavour.

38 - Indra

HE has drunk hence, Most Marvellous, and carried away our great and splendid call on Indra.

The Bounteous, when we serve the gods, accepts song yet more famous and the gifts we bring him. [1]

The speaker fills with a cry tIndra his ears who coms nigh even from a distance.

May this my call bring Indra to my presence, this call to gods composed in sacred verses. [2]

Him have I sung with my best song and praises, Indra of ancient birth and Everlasting.

For prayer and songs in him are concentrated: let laud wax mighty when addressed tIndra: [3]

Indra, whom sacrifice shall strengthen, Soma, and song and hymn, and praises and devotion,

Whom Dawns shall strengthen when the night departeth, Indra whom days shall strengthen, months, and autumns. [4]

Him, born for conquering might in full perfection, and waxen strongfor bounty and for glory,

Great, Powerful, will we to-day, singer, invite to aid. us and to quell our foemen.

39 - Indra

OF this our charming, our celestial Soma, eloquent, wise, priest, with inspired devotion,

Of this your close attendant, have you drunken. God, send the singer food with milk to grace it. [1]

Craving the kine, rushing against the mountain led on by Law, with holyminded comrades,

He broke the never-broken ridge of Vala. With words of might Indra subdued the Panis. [2]

This Indu lighted darksome nights, Indra, throughout the years, at morning and at evening.

Him have they stablished as the days' bright ensign. He made the Mornings to be born in splendour. [3]

He shone and caused to shme the worlds that shone not. By Law he lighted up the host of Mornings.

He moves with steeds yoked by eternal Order, contenting men with nave that finds the sunlight. [4]

Now, praised, Ancient King! fill you the singer with plenteous food that he may deal forth treasures.

Give waters, herbs that have no poison, forests, and kine, and steeds, and men, to him who lauds you.

40 - Indra

DRINK, Indra; juice is shed to make you joyful: loose your bay steeds and give your friends their freedom.

Begin the song, seated in our assembly. Give strength for sacrifice to him who singeth. [1]

Drink you of this whereof at birth, Indra, you drank, Mighty One for power and rapture.

The men, the pressing-stones, the cows, the waters have made this Soma ready for your drinking. [2]

The fire is kindled, Soma pressed, Indra: let your Bays, best to draw, convey you here.

With mind devoted, Indra, I invoke you. Come, for our great prosperity approach us. [3]

Indra, come here: evermore you camest through our great strong desire to drink the soma.

Listen and hear the prayers which now we offer, and let this sacrifice increase your vigour. [4]

May you, Indra, on the day of trial, present or absent, wheresoever you dwellest,

Thence, with your team, accordant with the Maruts, Song-lover! guard our sacrifice, to help us.

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