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The Maitrayaniya Upanishad of Maharashtra Painted through Submerged scripts

Maharashtra is the abode of one of the most significant parts of the Yajurveda, The Maitrayaniya Upanishad, number 24 in the canon of Muktika of 108 Upanishads. Yajurveda can be divided into two parts- white and black.  Maitrayaniya Upanishad is a part of the latter, with the expression "black" standing for "the un-organized, diverse assortment" of content in Yajurveda. 

Seven Prapathakas make up the Maitrayaniya Upanishad-

  • The main Prapathaka is essential.

  • The following three are laid out as questions and answers, and examine mystical inquiries connecting with Atman (Self).

  • The fifth to seventh Prapathaka are mere supplements. 

German philologist, Max Muller, states that the Maitrayaniya Upanishad talks extensively about the Self, which can be summarised in two or three words, "(Man) is the Self - the exceptional, the valiant, the Brahman ''. A couple of versions of the Maitrayaniya Upanishad contain fewer Prapathakas, with the one in the Telugu language having just four and the Burnell comprising a single section. The substance and development of the Upanishad are also disparate in various recensions, suggesting that the Upanishad was extensively worked upon. 

Maitrayaniya Upanishad is famous for its demonstration of Anyatrapyuktam (or Ityevam Hyaha), one of the earliest known Sanskrit texts that supported everything it stated with credits and steady references to old Sanskrit texts. The Maitri Upanishad's ancient text status is highly recognisable from the fact that it has several references to hypotheses  found in Buddhism, parts of the Samkhya and Yoga schools of Hinduism, and even the Ashrama structure. 

The association of Brahman liberates the genuine Self unto happiness. But, the Self is plagued, inebriated and attached to material things in life which bring it a sense of false joy and puts a long pause on an individual’s ability to discover their True Self. The Maitri Upanishad comes up with a solution for this. It states that to properly fathom what the True, genuine self is all about, one should understand the Vedas, perform Svadha for Rta and embrace the Ashrama life dedicatedly. According to the dictates of the fourth prapathaka as mentioned in passage 4.4 in the Upanishad, accepting challenges, persistence, and dedicated devotion brings one closer to the Brahman state of delight that is enduring, boundless and unchangeable. 

The Upanishad, in section 4.3, recognizes the innate pressure between the parsimonious existence of disavowing society for Self-information and the svadharma in each Ashrama phase of existence with the dedication to society. It calls asceticism qua asceticism wrong, and afterward promptly calls asceticism right, vital and acclaims austerity for the inward flawlessness and Self-information it brings.

Niratman is a unique term that crops up in maitri Upanishad multiple times- stanzas 6.20, 6.21 and 7.4. Niratman, stands for "benevolent" or "selfless." Sections 6.22 and 6.23 examine sound-Brahman (Om, sabda-brahman, lower Brahman) and soundless-Brahman (unfilled, Asaba-brahman, higher Brahman), then instruct that both ought to be known. The niratman idea has been deciphered to be comparable to Buddhism's anatta tenet (anatman). In the Upanishad, various positive and negative portrayals of different states -, for example, niratman and sarvasyatman (the Self of all) - are utilised in Maitrayaniya Upanishad to make sense of the nondual idea of the "highest Self."


Q1. What is the primary difference between the Vedas and the Upanishads?

Vedas zeroed in on ritualistic subtleties, uses and customs. Upanishads zeroed in on Spiritual edification.

Q2. Which Upanishad is popularly called “The Secret of Death”?

The Katha Veda is also known as “The Secret of Death”.