The Annapurna Upanishad (अन्नपूर्णा उपनिषद्) is a Sanskrit text and one of the minor Upanishads. This particular Upanishad is classified as a Samanya Upanishad and attached to the Atharva Veda. This article contains the English translation of The Annapurna Upanishad.
This Upanishad is well known for its describing the five types of delusions, asserting the Advaita Vedanta doctrine of non-duality and oneness of all souls and the metaphysical The text herein also describes, the process of Jivanmukti (achieving freedom from sufferings and reincarnation) and the characteristics of those who reach the ultimate knowledge of the “Self”.
The Annapurna Upanishad comprises of five chapters to it, with a cumulative total of 337 verses.
The Annapurna Upanishad in English
The Annapurna Upanishad As Translated by Dr. A. G. Krishna Warrier and Published by The Theosophical Publishing House, Chennai.
Om ! O Devas, may we hear with our ears what is auspicious;
May we see with our eyes what is auspicious, O ye worthy of worship !
May we enjoy the term of life allotted by the Devas,
Praising them with our body and limbs steady !
May the glorious Indra bless us !
May the all-knowing Sun bless us !
May Garuda, the thunderbolt for evil, bless us !
May Brihaspati grant us well-being !
Om ! Let there be Peace in me !
Let there be Peace in my environment !
Let there be Peace in the forces that act on me !
I-1-2. The king of Yogins, Nidagha, prostrated flat (like a rod) before
Ribhu, that pre-eminent knower of Brahman. Then, rising, that ascetic
respectfully said, ‘Teach me the truth about the Self; by what kind of
adoration have you, Oh Brahmana, attained this state ?
I-3-4. Teach me that grand science which yields sovereignty over the
empire of emancipation. ‘You have done well, Nidagha ! Listen to the
eternal science by the knowledge of which alone will you be liberated
life. Lodged in Om that envelopes the Root of phenomena (Brahman),
supporting the syllable ‘aim’,
I-5-7. ‘Eternal bliss, independent (‘hrim’), renowned, with streaming
stresses (‘sauh’), the ruler of the world (‘srim’), Mahalakshmi, (at once)
desire (‘klim’), fulfilment, and humanity, is the divine Annapurna. ‘I
begged of Her, using the celebrated and quintessential incantation of
27 syllables, cultivated by hosts of female ascetics,
I-8. ‘Namely, aim, hrim, sauh, srim, klim, aum namo
bhagavatyannapurne mamabhilashitam annam dehi Swaha.
[Salutation, O divine Annapurna, vouchsafe the food I desire]: ‘Thus
have I been instructed by my father. From then on have I established
myself in (this) discipline, persisting in the activities of my station (in
life) and have given myself up to the daily practice of this incantation.
I-9. ‘When many days passed thus, there appeared in front of me
Annapurna, wide-eyed, her lotus-face beaming with a smile.
I-10. ‘Seeing her, I prostrated flat on the ground, and (then) stood up
with folded hands. “Well, child, you have done well; ask of me a boon,
I-11. Oh (Nidagha), best of sages ! Thus hidden by the wide-eyed
(deity) I spoke: ‘O Daughter of the mountain, may the truth of the Self
dawn on my mind’.
I-12. Saying ‘be it so’ she vanished, then and there. Then, through the
perception of the world’s variety the idea (mati) arose in me.
I-13. Delusion appears five-fold; it will be presently set forth. Due to
the first delusion, Jiva and God appear to have different forms.
I-14. Due to the second, the attribute of agency dwelling in the Self
appears to be real. The third (consists in) deeming the Jiva associated
with the three bodies as having attachment.
I-15. The fourth takes the world-cause (God) to be mutable. The fifth
delusion ascribes reality to the world as distinguished from its cause.
Then, also, in the mind flashes the cessation of the five-fold delusion.
I-16. From that moment, spontaneously, my mind was assimilated to
Brahman. O Nidagha, thus may you, too, secure knowledge of reality.
I-17. With humility and respect (Nidagha spoke to Ribhu: impart to me,
having faith (in you), the peerless science of Brahman.
I-18. Gratified, Ribhu said: ‘so be it’. I shall impart to you the
knowledge of reality, O sinless one. Be a mighty agent, ardent enjoyer,
and a great renouncer. Having this investigated your own real nature,
I-19. ‘I am Brahman, ever manifest, pure, first, endless; there is no
room for the slightest dallying with aught else’ – thus think, having
become blemishless; achieve Nirvana (permanent peace) having
purified and quietened all movements of the mind.
I-20. Know that none of the things seen here is there; it is all like ‘the
city in the sky’ and ‘water in the desert’.
I-21. On the other hand, what is nowhere seen, at all, is not given (as
an object); beyond the range of the sixth sense, mind, O sage —
assimilate yourself to That.
I-22. Grasp: I am That which is the indestructible, infinite, Spirit, the
Self of everything, integral, replete, abundant and partless.
I-23. Due to the absolute contemplation of absence (or nihil), when the
mind dwindles, there results the state of the being-in-general (sattasamanya),
of that whose essence is unqualified consciousness.
I-24. Surely, devoid of all objective tinge, when consciousness (chit)
subsides, there supervenes the exceedingly transparent being-ingeneral
that resembles non-being.
I-25. For the liberated Self, both embodied and disembodied, surely
there occurs this ultimate perception known as the state-beyond-the
I-26. O sinless one, this occurs in the case of the knower both when he
has risen from Concentration (Samadhi) and when he is established in
it; being born of awareness, this does not happen for the ignorant
I-27. All waverings between states of reasoning, etc., having vanished
long since, his face steeped in the lovely light of Brahmic bliss, (the
sage) attains the blessed state through right knowledge alone.
I-28. The inner cool (calm repose) of him who perceives this multitude
of gunas as non-Self is said to be Concentration.
I-29. The steady mind is empty of latent impulses; the same is (the
state of) contemplation. The same also is Aloneness. Besides, it is
nothing but perpetual quiescence.
I-30. The mind with attenuated latent impulses is said to be bound for
the highest state. Next, the mind, without such impulses, attains the
status of the non-doer.
I-31. On the other hand, the mind’s imagination of being the doer is
replete with latent impulses; it causes all sufferings; therefore
attenuated latent impulses.
I-32. When the imagination of unity with all objects is mentally
discarded, due to its constant introverted state, all things are resolved
into empty space.
I-33. As crowds in a market, though active, are as good as non-existent
(to the observer) when he is not related (to them), so too, to the
knower is a village like unto a forest.
I-34. Being inwardly withdrawn, the knower, either asleep, awake,
walking or reading, beholds a city, country-side, or village as if it were
no other than a forest (i.e. with total disinterestedness).
I-35. Once the inner cool is won, the world is cool. To those scorched by
the inner thirst, the world is afire.
I-36. For all (unliberated) beings what is within is projected externally.
I-37. But the lover of the inner Self, though operating through the
organs of action, is unaffected by joy and sorrow; he is said to be
I-38. He who, as a matter of course and not through fear, beholds all
beings as one’s own Self and others’ possessions as clods of earth,
alone sees aright.
I-39. Let death come now or at the end of cycles; he remains
unblemished as gold (fallen) in mire.
I-40. Consider in your mind: who am I ? How is all this (brought
about) ? How do death and birth (happen) ? Thus (considering) will you
earn the great benefit (of investigation).
I-41. Your mind will shed its (discursive) form and quietly win repose,
once, through investigation, you comprehend your real nature.
I-42. O Brahmin, your mind, cured of its feverishness, no more sinks in
empirical activities, as an elephant does not, in the hollow made by a
I-43. But a petty mind, O Brahmin, does sink in any petty affair, just as
a battered mosquito does, in the water collected in the hollow made by
a cow’s hoof.
I-44. O best of ascetics, to the extent all objects are readily renounced,
the supreme Self, the transcendent light, alone remains.
I-45. So long as all objects are not renounced, the Self is not won. What
remains after the renunciation of the entire objective manifold is said
to be the Self.
I-46. Therefore, in order to realize the Self, renounce everything.
Having cast off all (objects), assimilate yourself to that which remains.
I-47. Whatever object is beheld in the world around is but the vibration
of Consciousness, it is nothing permanent.
I-48. O Brahmin, by the term Samadhi (Concentration) the wise denote
transcendent understanding that is concentrated, eternally appeased,
and is cognisant of things as they are.
I-49. The term Concentration denotes the stable, mountain-like, status
(of the self) that is unagitated, unegoistic, and unrelated to dualities.
I-50. O Brahmin, it denotes the perfected flow of the mind that is sure,
choiceless and goalless.
I-51. The best of the knowers of the Vedas, the great ones, win that
fourth and stable perception that is fashioned solely through a part of
the light of the Spirit.
I-52. (It is) lodged in the heart of all things and not altogether unlike
dreamless slumber, when the mind and the ego subside.
I-53. After liquidating the mind with the mind, that state – that
supremely divine bliss-body – is automatically won.
I-54. Thence follows the obliteration of all cravings for objects; then
dawns the auspicious and superbly splendid light, and then, in the case
of the very best, due to the sway of even-mindness (takes place) the
ineffable transformation into the Self’s substance.
I-55. Directly experienced indeed as the God of gods and Self of all
entities, moving and stationary is this total and infinite reality of the
Self, dwelling in the fast-evolving mind that is quietened externally.
I-56. The unattached, steady, and controlled mind is not in evidence in
the worldings; the attached mind, though subjected to long-drawn
austerities is, as it were, altogether bound.
I-57. The man free from inner clingings, whose mind dwells on the
blissful (Brahman) may or may not act externally; never can he be
either agent or experiencer.
II-1. Nidagha: What is attachment like ? What kind of it leads to human
bondage ? And what kind of it is said to liberate ? How is this
(attachment) cured ?
II-2. (Ribhu): Imagination, ignoring wholly the distinction between the
body and the embodied (Self) – the exclusive faith in the body – is the
attachment that is said to bind.
II-3. All this is Self: what shall I seek here and what avoid ? Know this to
be the position of non-attachment that the Jivanmukta fosters.
II-4. I am not; none, other than me, is; neither this nor the non-other
exists. This (attitude) is said to be non-attachment, always
maintaining, ‘I am Brahman’.
II-5. He does not approve of inactivity; neither does he cling to
activities. He, the renouncer, is the superbly equable (in outlook); he is
said to be the non-attached.
II-6. One who mentally, and not in the concrete act alone, renounces
fruits, etc., of all his activities – that adept is said to be non-attached.
II-7. Imaginations and the manifold activities issuing (therefrom) are
cured, here, by non-indulgence in imagination; thus promote well being.
II-8-9. The mind that clings not to acts, thoughts, and things, to
wanderings and reckonings of time, but reposes in Consciousness
alone, finding no delight anywhere, even when turned toward some
objects, revels in the Self.
II-10. Let him perform or not all this empirical activity; doing or nondoing,
his true occupation is Self-delight.
II-11. Or, giving up even that objective element, as stabilised
Consciousness, the tranquillised Jiva abides in the Self like a radiant
II-12. The quiescent state of the attenuated mind, free from all
objective reference, is said to be the deep sleep in wakefulness.
II-13. This state of slumber, O Nidagha, fully developed through
practice, is styled the Fourth by the best knowers of Truth.
II-14. Having attained the indestructible status in this fourth stage, one
reaches a non-blissful poise (as it were), its nature being invariably
II-15. Thence lifted above all relativities, like non-bliss and great bliss,
the time-less Yogin, reaching the state beyond the fourth, is said to be
II-16. With all bonds of birth loosened, and all Tamasic conceits
dissolved, the great sage (abides) as the blissful being of the supreme
Self like a salt-crystal in water.
II-17. That which is the trans-empirical and experiential reality, present
in the (contrasted) perceptions of the material and the conscious, is
the essence; Brahman is said to be that.
II-18(a). Bondage is encompassed by the object; on release from this,
liberation is said to supervene.
II-18(b)-19. Resting in that unvexed experience, discriminated in the
link between the substance and perception, abide you; thus one
attains the (peace) of deep sleep. That develops into the Fourth;
station your gaze on That.
II-20. The Self is neither gross nor subtle; neither manifest nor hidden;
neither spiritual nor material; neither non-being nor being.
II-21. That non-dual indestructible one which has become the object,
the ground of mind and all sense-organs, is neither ‘I’ nor another;
neither one nor many.
II-22. That real joy (experienced) in the relation between the object and
perception is the transcendental state; therefore it is, as it were,
nothing (in itself).
II-23. Liberation is not on the top of the sky; not in the nether world;
not on the earth. The dwindling of mind in which all desires dry up is
held to be liberation.
II-24. With the thought, within, ‘let me have liberation’ the mind
springs up; this worldly bondage is firm in the mind agitated with
II-25. The mere non-cleansing of the mind reduces it to a state of
prodigious transmigration; its cleansing alone, on the other hand, is
said to be liberation.
II-26. What is bondage and what is liberation in respect of the Self that
transcends all things or that pervades all forms ? Think freely.
II-27. Loving the Spirit, lifted above all hopes, full, holy in mind, having
won the incomparable state of repose, he seeks nothing here.
II-28. He is called the Jivanmukta (Liberated in life) who lives,
unattached, in the pure Being that sustains all, the indubitable Spirit
that is the Self.
II-29. He craves not for what is yet to be; he does not bank on the
present; he remembers not the past; yet he does all work.
II-30. Ever unattached to those who cling to him; devoted to the
devotees; he is harsh, as it were, to the harsh.
II-31. A child amidst children; adult amidst adults; bold amidst the bold;
a youth amidst the youthful; lamenting amidst those who lament;
II-32. Steadfast, blissful, polished, of holy speech, wise, simple and
sweet; never given to self-pity;
II-33. Through discipline, when the throb of vital breaths ceases, the
mind is wholly dissolved; the impersonal bliss (Nirvana) remains;
II-34. Whence all discursive speech turns back. With the obliteration of
all of one’s mental constructions that (Brahmic) status abides.
II-35. Here is the supreme Self whose essence is the light of
Consciousness without beginning or end; the wise hold this luminous
certitude to be the right knowledge.
II-36. The plenitude due to the knowledge ‘all the world is Self alone’ is
the right measure of Self-realization everywhere in the world.
II-37. All is Self alone; what are the (empirical) states being and nonbeing
? Where have they fled ? Where are those notions of bondage
and liberation ? What stands out is Brahman alone.
II-38. All is the one supreme Sky. What is liberation ? What is bondage ?
This is the great Brahman, established mightily, with extended form;
duality has vanished far from It; be you, yourself, the Self alone.
II-39. When the form of a stock, stone and cloth is seen aright, there is
not even a shadow of difference; bent on imagination (of differences)
where are you ?
II-40. This imperishable and tranquil essence, (present) at the
beginning and end of things and yourself, always be That.
II-41. With mental distinctions of duality and non-duality and delusions
of old age and death, the Self alone shines in its phases (atmabhih)
just as the sea, in its (phases of) waves.
II-42. What enjoyment of the desired (fruits) can disturb him, who
dwells steadfast, ever wedded, in thought, to the pure Self that fells
the tree of dangers, to the status of bliss supreme ?
II-43. Mental enjoyments are the foes of one who has thought
extensively; they move him not in the least just as gentle breezes
move not a hill at all.
II-44. ‘Plurality exists in diverse imaginings, not really, within; just as
there is nothing but water in a lake’ – a man filled with this one
certitude is said to be liberated; he who has perceived the Real.
III-1. (Nidagha): What is the nature of liberation without the body ? Who
is the great sage in possession of it ? Resorting to which Yoga has he
achieved that supreme status ?
III-2. Ribhu: In the region of Sumeru the celebrated sage Mandavya
resorting to Truth (imparted by) Kaundinya became liberated in life.
III-3. Having attained the status of Jivanmukti, that foremost knower of
Brahman, that great sage, made up his mind, once upon a time, to
withdraw all his sense-organs (from their respective objects).
III-4. He sat in the lotus-posture, with eyes half-closed, slowly avoiding
contacts (with objects), external and internal.
III-5. Then he, with his sinless mind, (reflected on) the (degree of)
steadiness of his mind: ‘clearly, though withdrawn, this mind of mine is
III-6. It wanders from a cloth to a pot and thence to a big cart. The
mind wanders among objects as a monkey does from tree to tree.
III-7. The five openings, eyes and so forth, known as the sense organs
of cognition, I am watching carefully with my mind.
III-8. O you sense-organs ! Slowly give up your mood of agitation. Here
I am, the divine spiritual Self, the witness of all.
III-9. With that all-knowing Self, I have comprehended (the nature of)
eyes, etc. I am
completely secure and at peace. Luckily I am fearless.
III-10. Incessantly I rest in my Self, the Fourth; my vital breaths, its
extensions, have all, in due order, subsided within.
III-11. (I am) as a fire with its multitudinous flames, when the fuel has
been consumed; it blazed forth but now is extinguished – the blazing
fire has, indeed, been extinguished.
III-12. Having been purified utterly, I remain equable, enjoying all alike,
as it were. I am awake though in deep sleep; though in deep sleep, I
III-13-14. Resorting to the Fourth, I remain within the body with a stable
status, having abandoned, together with the long thread of sound
reaching upto OM, objects in all the three worlds fashioned by
III-15. As a bird, for flying in the sky, leaves the net (in which it was
enmeshed), the great sage sheds (his) identification with the senseorgans;
then (he sheds) his awareness of limbs which has become
III-16. He has won the knowledge of a new-born infant; as if the air
should give up its power to vibrate, he has terminated the proneness of
consciousness to attach itself to objects.
III-17. Then, attaining the unqualified state of Consciousness – the
state of pure Being –resorting, (as it were), to the state of dreamless
slumber, he has stayed immovable like a mountain.
III-18. Winning the stability of dreamless sleep he has attained the
Fourth; though gone beyond bliss, (he is) still blissful; he has become
both being and non-being.
III-19. Then he becomes that which is beyond even the range of words
which is the nihil of the nihilist and Brahman of the knowers of
III-20. Which is the pure blemishless cognition of the knowers of
cognition, the Purusha of the Sankhyas and Ishvara of the Yogins;
III-21. The Shiva of the Shivagamas; the Time of those who affirm Time
alone (as the basic principle); the final doctrine of all Shastras, and
what conforms to every heart;
III-22. Which is the All, the all-pervading Reality, the Truth. He has
become That, the unuttered, the moveless, the illuminator even of
III-23. The Principle whose sole proof is one’s experience of It – he has
remained as That.
III-24. That which is unborn, deathless, beginningless and the First
immaculate state, whole and impartite – he has remained as That; a
state subtler than that of the sky. In a moment, he has become the
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