Datta: what have we given?
“Datta” ~ Sanskrit: Give
Taken from the first line of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, considered the most important of the 13 Principal Upanishads that compose the Vedanta, “Datta” is one of the three main imperatives from which spring “The Three Principal Virtues" of Hinduism.
According to the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, the imperative "Give" is the first of three commands discerned from the monosyllabic speech of the thunder. As with the other two commands (below), it relates in this poem to the passage that follows. Eliot suggests that “the awful daring of a moment’s surrender” (whether we take that surrender to be erotic, spiritual, or otherwise) is the most important thing we “give” in our lives.
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