13. The small (ether) (is Brahman), on account of the subsequent (arguments).
The Khandogas have the following text, 'Now in that city of Brahman there is the palace, the small lotus, and in it that small ether. Now what is within that small ether that is to be sought for, that is to be understood' (Kh. Up. VIII, 1, 1).--The question here arises whether that small ether (space) within the lotus of the heart be the material clement called ether, or the individual Self, or the highest Self.--The first view presenting itself is that the element is meant, for the reason that the word 'ether' is generally used in that sense; and because the clause 'what is within that small ether' shows that the ether mentioned constitutes the abode of something else that is to be enquired into.--This view is set aside by the Sūtra. The small ether within the heart is the highest Brahman, on account of the subsequent reasons, contained in clauses of the same section. The passage 'That Self which is free from evil, free from old age, free from death, free from grief, free from hunger and thirst, whose wishes and purposes come true' (VIII, 7, 1) ascribes to that small ether qualities--such as unconditioned Selfhood, freedom from evil, &c.--which clearly show that ether to be the highest Brahman. And this conclusion is confirmed by what other texts say about him who knows the small ether attaining the power of realising his own wishes,'Those who depart from hence having come to know the Self and those real wishes, for them there is freedom in all worlds'; and 'whatever object he desires, by his mere will it comes to him; having obtained it he is happy' (Kh, Up. VIII, 1, 6; 2, 9). If moreover the ether within the heart were the elemental ether, the comparison instituted in the passage 'As large as that (elemental) ether is, so large is this ether within the heart' would be wholly inappropriate.
Nor must it be said that that comparison rests on the limitation of the ether within the heart (so that the two terms compared would be the limited elemental ether within the heart, and the universal elemental ether); for there still would remain the inappropriate assertion that the ether within the heart is the abode of heaven, earth and all other things.--But, an objection is raised, also on the alternative of the small ether being the highest Brahman, the comparison to the universal elemental ether is unsuitable; for scripture explicitly states that the highest Self is (not as large but) larger than everything else, 'larger than the earth, larger than the sky,' &c. (Kh. Up. III, 14, 3). Not so, we reply; what the text says as to the ether within the heart being as large as the universal ether is meant (not to make a conclusive statement as to its extent but only) to negative that smallness of the ether which is established by its abiding within the heart. Similarly we say 'the sun moves with the speed of an arrow'; the sun indeed moves much faster than an arrow, but what our assertion means is merely that he does not move slowly.--But, a further doubt is started, the passage 'That Self which is free from sin,' &c. does not appear to refer back to the small ether within the heart. For the text makes a distinction between that ether and that within that ether which it declares to be the due object of search and enquiry.