SrI: SrImathE SatakOpAya nama: SrImathE rAmAnujAya nama: SrImath varavaramunayE nama:
āścarya-vat paśyati kaścid enam
āścarya-vad vadati tathaiva cānyaḥ
āścarya-vac cainam anyaḥ śṛṇoti
śrutvāpy enaṁ veda na caiva kaścit
‘One looketh on this (ātmā) as wonderful; similarly someone else speaketh of it in wonderment; another heareth about it as wonderful but no one knoweth at all what it is.'[2. Cf. Śravaṇayāpi bahubhir-yona labhyah, sṛiṇvantopi bahavo yam na vidyuh, āścharya vaktā kuśalosya labdhā (Kat: Up: II-7). This Śruti is with reference to Paramātma.]
Amongst innumerable beings, rarely is there one whose sins have become expunged by rigorous austerities, and who has so accumulated merit as to realize ātmā in its singularly distinct nature as such from all the rest of things, according to the description given above. Such a person talks about it to another. Another person similarly circumstanced gives it hearing and so on. But no one definitely understands the true nature of ātmā. The conjunctive particle cha used at the end of the verse is to connote that even among the seers, talkers and hearers of ātmā, the definite seeing, the definite talking and the definite hearing, of what ātmā precisely is, is rare.
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