The Inter-Relationship of the Elements of Creation and the Role of the Seeker in the Creation

Sri Aurobindo translates Taittiriya Upanishad, Bhriguvalli, Chapter 8: “Thou shalt not reject food; for that too is the vow of thy labour.  Verily the waters also are food, and the bright fire is the eater.  The fire is established upon the waters and the waters are established upon the fires.  Here too is food established upon food.  He who knoweth this food that is established upon food, getteth his firm base, he becometh the master of food and its eater, great in progeny, great in cattle, great in the radiance of holiness, great in glory.”

The Upanishad goes through a progression.  In chapter 7, the injunction was not to “blame” food.  In chapter 8, the seeker is asked not to “reject” food.  The implication is clear that the world manifestation is not to be abandoned.  The Upanishad goes further as it continues to explore the inter-relationships of the various elements of existence.  In chapter 7, the connection between Matter and Life-Force was explored.  In chapter 8, the relationship between water and fire is developed.  We see the same paradigm applied in both cases, and the same result eventuates for the seeker who understands the inter-connected nature of all existence.

Blaming or rejecting the material creation implies a duality.  The manifestation of the universal creation, however, is an expression of the oneness of the Brahman.  The teacher is emphasizing the oneness through this expanding analysis of the seeker’s relationship to the material world.

Sri Aurobindo, The Upanishads,  Taittiriya Upanishad, Bhriguvalli, pp.275-281, M. P. Pandit, Upanishads: Gateways of Knowledge, pp. 169-182