Srimad Bhagavatam 10.84.48-51 - Setting Mode of Sacrifice (download mp3)
by Shyamananda Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty
Vasudeva received initiation along with his wives, who wore silk saris and were adorned with bangles, necklaces, ankle bells and earrings. With his body wrapped in a deerskin, Vasudeva shone splendidly.
sa-sadasya virejus te
yatha vrtra-hano ’dhvare
My dear Maharaja Pariksit, Vasudeva’s priests and the officiating members of the assembly, dressed in silk dhotis and jeweled ornaments, looked so effulgent that they seemed to be standing in the sacrificial arena of Indra, the killer of Vrtra.
tada ramas ca krsnas ca
svaih svair bandhubhir anvitau
rejatuh sva-sutair darair
At that time Balarama and Krsna, the Lords of all living entities, shone forth with great majesty in the company of Their respective sons, wives and other family members, who were expansions of Their opulences.
ije ’nu-yajñam vidhina
prakrtair vaikrtair yajñair
Performing various kinds of Vedic sacrifice according to the proper regulations, Vasudeva worshiped the Lord of all sacrificial paraphernalia, mantras and rituals. He executed both primary and secondary sacrifices, offering oblations to the sacred fire and carrying out other aspects of sacrificial worship.
There are numerous kinds of Vedic fire sacrifice, each of which involves several elaborate rituals. The Brahmana portion of the Vedic sruti specifies the complete step-by-step procedure of only a few prototype sacrifices, such as the Jyotistoma and Darsa-purnamasa. These are called the prakrta, or original, yajñas; the details of other yajñas must be extrapolated from the patterns of these prakrta injunctions according to the strict rules of the Mimamsa-sastra. Since other yajñas are thus known by derivation from the prototype sacrifices, they are called vaikrta, or “changed.”