TEXT 21
tiraścām aṣṭamaḥ sargaḥ
so ’ṣṭāviṁśad-vidho mataḥ
avido bhūri-tamaso
ghrāṇa-jñā hṛdy avedinaḥ
SYNONYMS
tiraścām—species of lower animals; aṣṭamaḥ—the eighth; sargaḥ—creation; saḥ—they are; aṣṭāviṁśat—twenty-eight; vidhaḥ—varieties; mataḥ—considered; avidaḥ—without knowledge of tomorrow; bhūri—extensively; tamasaḥ—ignorant; ghrāṇa-jñāḥ—can know desirables by smell; hṛdi avedinaḥ—can remember very little in the heart.
TRANSLATION
The eighth creation is that of the lower species of life, and they are of different varieties, numbering twenty-eight. They are all extensively foolish and ignorant. They know their desirables by smell, but are unable to remember anything within the heart.
PURPORT
In the Vedas the symptoms of the lower animals are described as follows: athetareṣāṁ paśūnāḥ aśanāpipāse evābhivijñānaṁ na vijñātaṁ vadanti na vijñātaṁ paśyanti na viduḥ śvastanaṁ na lokālokāv iti; yad , bhūri-tamaso bahu-ruṣaḥ ghrāṇenaiva jānanti hṛdyaṁ prati svapriyaṁ vastv eva vindanti bhojana-śayanādy-arthaṁ gṛhṇanti. “Lower animals have knowledge only of their hunger and thirst. They have no acquired knowledge, no vision. Their behavior exhibits no dependence on formalities. Extensively ignorant, they can know their desirables only by smell, and by such intelligence only can they understand what is favorable and unfavorable. Their knowledge is concerned only with eating and sleeping.” Therefore, even the most ferocious lower animals, such as tigers, can be tamed simply by regularly supplying meals and accommodations for sleeping. Only snakes cannot be tamed by such an arrangement.

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