1. In the imperishable, infinite supreme brahman
Two are kept in a secret place, knowledge and ignorance,
Ignorance is the perishable, knowledge the immortal:
But the one who rules knowledge and ignorance is different again—
2. The one who stands over every womb,
All forms and all wombs,
Who carries the Rsi Kapila, first begotten, in his thoughts
And can see him being born.
3. The god spreads out net after net, in many ways,
And draws them together in this field.
When the Yatis—and thus the lord—have created again,
The magnanimous one becomes overlord of all.
4. As the draught-ox shines, lighting all regions,
Above, below and across,
The one blessed, lovely god
Rules over those who have the nature of the womb.
5. One who, womb of all, ripens his own nature,
Stands over all this whole,
To mature all that is to be ripened,
To assign all strands.
6. Brahma knows it as the womb of brahman,
That which is hidden in the Upanisads that are hidden in the Vedas.
The gods and Rsis who knew it of old,
Becoming of a kind with it, became immortal.
7. The one with the strands, doer of actions which bring fruit,
Is the experiencer of that act.
In all forms, with three strands, with three paths,
The overlord of the breaths wanders according to his own actions.
8. With a form like the sun, he is a thumb in length,
When possessing intention and the sense of ‘I’.
With just the strand of understanding and the strand of self
He seems in length the lesser point of a spoke.
9. The life (jiva) should be known as a fraction
Of the hundredth part of a hair-tip
A hundredfold divided—
Yet it is fitted for infinity."
10. It is neither female nor male,
Nor is it neuter.
It is guarded by whatever body
It takes on.
11. By intention, touch, sight and passion
And the rain of food and water, the self grows and is born
Embodied, it takes in succession to different forms
In different places in accordance with its action.
12. Through its own strands, the embodied
Chooses many shapes, gross and subtle.
Because of the strands of actions and the strands of self,
The cause of their joining seems to be another.
13. Knowing the god, beginningless, endless, in the midst of the throng,
Many-formed creator of all,
Enfolder of all,
One is freed from all bonds.
14. Those who know him, to be found through being, 'nestless' by name,
Siva, maker of being and not-being,
The god, maker of the creation of parts,
Have left the body behind.