आत्मगृहीतिरितरवत्, उत्तरात् ॥ १६ ॥
ātmagṛhītiritaravat, uttarāt || 16 ||
ātmagṛhīti—The Supreme Self is meant; itaravat—as in other texts (dealing with creation); uttarāt—on account of the subsequent qualification.
16. (In the Aitareva Upanishad 1.1) the Supreme Self is meant, as in other texts (dealing with creation), on account of the subsequent qualification.
“Verily in the beginning all this was the Self, one only; there was nothing else whatsoever” etc. (Ait. 1. 1.). Does the word ‘Self’ here refer to the Supreme Self or to Hiranyagarbha? It refers to the Supreme Self, even as the word ‘Self’ in other texts dealing with creation refers to It and not to Hiranyagarbha: “From the Self sprang forth ether” (Taitt. 2. 1). Why? Because in the subsequent text of the Aiteraya we have, “It thought, ‘Shall I send forth worlds?’ It sent forth these worlds” (Ait. 1. 1-2). This qualification, viz. that ‘It thought’ before creation, is applied to Brahman in the primary sense in other Sruti texts. So from this we learn that the Self refers to the Supreme Self and not to Hiranyagarbha.