Sage Angirasa is one of the Saptarishis (Seven Sages) and the Manasaputra (son born of the mind) of Brahma. He is one of the Projenitors of humankind. His wife is Svadha, Smriti, Sati & Shraddha and Sage Brihaspati was his son. Many verses in the Vedas are attributed to Sage Angirasa. He along with sage Atharvan are said to have composed most of the Atharvana Veda. Some descendents of Sage Angirasa are said to be Kshatriya by birth and Brahmins by calling. This is so because the Sage helped a childless King to beget children.

Sage Angirasa and Saunaka, the Householder

One of the stories related to Sage Angirasa is mentioned in the Mundaka Upanishad. A householder by the name Saunaka carries his firewood and reaches the forest where Sage Angirasa is. He approaches the Sage reverentially and beseeches “O Holy Sage, teach me that through which the whole universe can be known.” Sage Angirasa goes on to explain the two different kinds of knowledge on this Earth. The lower knowledge he states are the sciences, hymns, rituals, grammar, poetry astrology etc. The higher knowledge is that which leads a man to that which never dies. The Indestructible.

Sage Angiras to explain this further says “This body is like a tree in which two birds live. They look alike. The lower bird is tasting the fruits of the tree and some are sweet and others are sour. The higher bird is just watching the lower bird.  One day the lower bird is tired of everything and starts to weep. The lower bird sees the higher bird which is calm, unattached and at peace. The lower bird hops towards the higher one. It suddenly realizes that the upper bird is also just himself, his true Self . Knowing this his grief disappears. He realises that the Ego was not real, the Self was real, the observer of all.