Kena Upanishad

The Best Quotes

Brahman Alone Exists

The disciple asked: Om. By whose will directed does the mind proceed to its object? At whose command does the prana, the foremost, do its duty? At whose will do men utter speech? Who is the god that directs the eyes and ears? (1:1)

The teacher replied: It is the Ear of the ear, the Mind of the mind, the Speech of speech, the Life of life and the Eye of the eye. Having detached the Self from the sense—organs and renounced the world, the Wise attain to Immortality. (1.2)

The eye does not go thither, nor speech, nor the mind. We do not know It; we do not understand how anyone can teach It. It is different from the known; It is above the unknown. Thus we have heard from the preceptors of old who taught It to us. (1.3-4)

That which cannot be expressed by speech, but by which speech is expressed—That alone know as Brahman and not that which people here worship.

That which cannot be apprehended by the mind, but by which, they say, the mind is apprehended—That alone know as Brahman and not that which people here worship.

That which cannot be perceived by the eye, but by which the eye is perceived—That alone know as Brahman and not that which people here worship.

That which cannot he heard by the ear, but by which the hearing is perceived—That alone know as Brahman and not that which people here worship. (1.5-8)



Brahman alone exists.

All other objects, such as the body, the senses, and the mind, are falsely superimposed upon It, like an illusory snake upon a rope. As the rope is the true essence and self of the illusory snake, so Brahman is the essence and self of the eye, speech, the mind, and the rest.

This essence, or Brahman, is Consciousness, the eternal and infinite Subject; It cannot be made an object of the material and finite senses.

The tongue defines an object by means of words. The words are said to meet the object. But Brahman is the very essence and self of all, including both the words and the tongue that utters them. Therefore speech cannot define Brahman.

Fire, which burns and illumines other objects, cannot burn or illumine itself.

Brahman (the Ultimate Reality; the Universe; the Absolute) is Pure Consciousness and cannot be know by man because it is not an object.

Brahman is the essence of the eye (' Eye of the eye'), the ear, the mind etc. Brahman — Eternal, Infinite, Unconditioned — cannot be made an object of material, limited and finite senses.

He by whom Brahman is not known, knows It; he by whom It is known, knows It not. It is not known by those who know It; It is known by those who do not know It. (2.3)

Brahman is known when It is realized in every state of mind, for by such Knowledge one attains Immortality. By Atman one obtains strength, by Knowledge, Immortality. (2.4)

If a man knows Atman here, he then attains the true goal of life. If he does not know It here, a great destruction awaits him. Having realized the Self in every being, the wise relinquish the world and become immortal. (2.5)

That Brahman is called Tadvana, the Adorable of all; It should be worshipped by the name of Tadvana. All creatures desire him who worships Brahman thus. (4.6)

The disciple said; 'Teach me, sir, the Upanishad." The preceptor replied: "I have already told you the Upanishad. I have certainly told you the Upanishad about Brahman." (4.7)

Austerities, self-restraint and sacrificial rites are Its feet and he Vedas are all Its limbs. Truth is Its abode. (4.8)

He who thus knows this Upanishad shakes off all sins and becomes firmly established in the infinite and the highest Heaven, yea, the highest Heaven. (4.9)


Isha Upanishad Best Quotes

Renounce of All Desires

All this—whatever exists in this changing universe—should be covered by the Lord. Protect the Self by renunciation. Lust not after any man's wealth. (1)


Pure Consciousness is the Essence of Reality

To the seer, all things have verily become the Self: what delusion, what sorrow, can there be for him who beholds that oneness? (7)


The Real Nature of Atman

It is He who pervades all—He who is bright and bodiless, without scar or sinews, pure and by evil unpierced; who is the Seer, omniscient, transcendent and uncreatd. He has duly allotted to the eternal World-Creators their respective duties. (8)

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* Excerpts translated by Swami Nikhilananda