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The Vedas (/ˈveɪdəz, ˈviː-/;Sanskrit: वेदveda, 'knowledge') are a large body of religious texts originating in ancient India. Composed in Vedic Sanskrit, the texts constitute the oldest layer of Sanskrit literature and the oldest scriptures of Hinduism. Hindus consider the Vedas to be apauruṣeya, which means 'not of a man, superhuman' and 'impersonal, authorless'.
Vedas are also called śruti ('what is heard') literature, distinguishing them from other religious texts, which are called smṛti ('what is remembered'). The Veda, for orthodox Indian theologians, are considered revelations seen by ancient sages after intense meditation, and texts that have been more carefully preserved since ancient times. In the Hindu Epic the Mahabharata, the creation of Vedas is credited to Brahma. The Vedic hymns themselves assert that they were skillfully created by Rishis (sages), after inspired creativity, just as a carpenter builds a chariot.[note 1]
According to tradition, Vyasa is the compiler of the Vedas, who arranged the four kinds of mantras into four Samhitas (Collections). There are four Vedas: the Rigveda, the Yajurveda, the Samaveda and the Atharvaveda. Each Veda has been subclassified into four major text types – the Samhitas (mantras and benedictions), the Aranyakas (text on rituals, ceremonies, sacrifices and symbolic-sacrifices), the Brahmanas (commentaries on rituals, ceremonies and sacrifices), and the Upanishads (texts discussing meditation, philosophy and spiritual knowledge). Some scholars add a fifth category – the Upasanas (worship).
The various Indian philosophies and denominations have taken differing positions on the Vedas. Schools of Indian philosophy which cite the Vedas as their scriptural authority are classified as 'orthodox' (āstika).[note 2] Other śramaṇa traditions, such as Lokayata, Carvaka, Ajivika, Buddhism and Jainism, which did not regard the Vedas as authorities, are referred to as 'heterodox' or 'non-orthodox' (nāstika) schools. Despite their differences, just like the texts of the śramaṇa traditions, the layers of texts in the Vedas discuss similar ideas and concepts.
- 3Categories of Vedic texts
- 5Four Vedas
- 5.5Embedded Vedic texts
- 6Post-Vedic literature
Etymology and usage
The Sanskrit word véda 'knowledge, wisdom' is derived from the root vid- 'to know'. This is reconstructed as being derived from the Proto-Indo-European root *u̯eid-, meaning 'see' or 'know', cognate to Greek(ϝ)εἶδος 'aspect', 'form'. This is not to be confused is the homonymous 1st and 3rd person singular perfect tense véda, cognate to Greek (ϝ)οἶδα(w)oida 'I know'. Root cognates are Greek ἰδέα, Englishwit, etc., Latinvideō 'I see', etc.
The Sanskrit term veda as a common noun means 'knowledge'. The term in some contexts, such as hymn 10.93.11 of the Rigveda, means 'obtaining or finding wealth, property', while in some others it means 'a bunch of grass together' as in a broom or for ritual fire.
A related word Vedena appears in hymn 8.19.5 of the Rigveda. It was translated by Ralph T. H. Griffith as 'ritual lore', as 'studying the Veda' by the 14th-century Indian scholar Sayana, as 'bundle of grass' by Max Müller, and as 'with the Veda' by H.H. Wilson.
Vedas are called Maṛai or Vaymoli in parts of South India. Marai literally means 'hidden, a secret, mystery'. But Tamil Naanmarai mentioned in Tholkappiam isn't Sanskrit Vedas. In some south Indian communities such as Iyengars, the word Veda includes the Tamil writings of the Alvar saints, such as Divya Prabandham, for example Tiruvaymoli.
The Vedas are among the oldest sacred texts. The Samhitas date to roughly 1700–1100 BCE, and the 'circum-Vedic' texts, as well as the redaction of the Samhitas, date to c. 1000–500 BCE, resulting in a Vedic period, spanning the mid 2nd to mid 1st millennium BCE, or the Late Bronze Age and the Iron Age.The Vedic period reaches its peak only after the composition of the mantra texts, with the establishment of the various shakhas all over Northern India which annotated the mantra samhitas with Brahmana discussions of their meaning, and reaches its end in the age of Buddha and Panini and the rise of the Mahajanapadas (archaeologically, Northern Black Polished Ware). Michael Witzel gives a time span of c. 1500 to c. 500–400 BCE. Witzel makes special reference to the Near Eastern Mitanni material of the 14th century BCE, the only epigraphic record of Indo-Aryan contemporary to the Rigvedic period. He gives 150 BCE (Patañjali) as a terminus ante quem for all Vedic Sanskrit literature, and 1200 BCE (the early Iron Age) as terminus post quem for the Atharvaveda.
Transmission of texts in the Vedic period was by oral tradition, preserved with precision with the help of elaborate mnemonic techniques. A literary tradition is traceable in post-Vedic times, after the rise of Buddhism in the Maurya period,[note 3] perhaps earliest in the Kanva recension of the Yajurveda about the 1st century BCE; however oral tradition of transmission remained active. Witzel suggests the possibility of written Vedic texts towards the end of 1st millennium BCE. Some scholars such as Jack Goody state that 'the Vedas are not the product of an oral society', basing this view by comparing inconsistencies in the transmitted versions of literature from various oral societies such as the Greek, Serbia and other cultures, then noting that the Vedic literature is too consistent and vast to have been composed and transmitted orally across generations, without being written down. However, adds Goody, the Vedic texts likely involved both a written and oral tradition, calling it a 'parallel products of a literate society'.
Due to the ephemeral nature of the manuscript material (birch bark or palm leaves), surviving manuscripts rarely surpass an age of a few hundred years. The Sampurnanand Sanskrit University has a Rigveda manuscript from the 14th century; however, there are a number of older Veda manuscripts in Nepal that are dated from the 11th century onwards.
The Vedas, Vedic rituals and its ancillary sciences called the Vedangas, were part of the curriculum at ancient universities such as at Taxila, Nalanda and Vikramashila.
Categories of Vedic texts
The term 'Vedic texts' is used in two distinct meanings:
- Texts composed in Vedic Sanskrit during the Vedic period (Iron Age India)
- Any text considered as 'connected to the Vedas' or a 'corollary of the Vedas'
Vedic Sanskrit corpus
The corpus of Vedic Sanskrit texts includes:
- The Samhitas (Sanskrit saṃhitā, 'collection'), are collections of metric texts ('mantras'). There are four 'Vedic' Samhitas: the Rig-Veda, Sama-Veda, Yajur-Veda, and Atharva-Veda, most of which are available in several recensions (śākhā). In some contexts, the term Veda is used to refer to these Samhitas. This is the oldest layer of Vedic texts, apart from the Rigvedic hymns, which were probably essentially complete by 1200 BCE, dating to c. the 12th to 10th centuries BCE. The complete corpus of Vedic mantras as collected in Bloomfield's Vedic Concordance (1907) consists of some 89,000 padas (metrical feet), of which 72,000 occur in the four Samhitas.
- The Brahmanas are prose texts that comment and explain the solemn rituals as well as expound on their meaning and many connected themes. Each of the Brahmanas is associated with one of the Samhitas or its recensions. The Brahmanas may either form separate texts or can be partly integrated into the text of the Samhitas. They may also include the Aranyakas and Upanishads.
- The Aranyakas, 'wilderness texts' or 'forest treaties', were composed by people who meditated in the woods as recluses and are the third part of the Vedas. The texts contain discussions and interpretations of ceremonies, from ritualistic to symbolic meta-ritualistic points of view. It is frequently read in secondary literature.
- Older Mukhya Upanishads (Bṛhadāraṇyaka, Chandogya, Kaṭha, Kena, Aitareya, and others).
The Vedas (sruti) are different from Vedic era texts such as Shrauta Sutras and Gryha Sutras, which are smriti texts. Together, the Vedas and these Sutras form part of the Vedic Sanskrit corpus.
While production of Brahmanas and Aranyakas ceased with the end of the Vedic period, additional Upanishads were composed after the end of the Vedic period.
The Brahmanas, Aranyakas, and Upanishads, among other things, interpret and discuss the Samhitas in philosophical and metaphorical ways to explore abstract concepts such as the Absolute (Brahman), and the soul or the self (Atman), introducing Vedanta philosophy, one of the major trends of later Hinduism. In other parts, they show evolution of ideas, such as from actual sacrifice to symbolic sacrifice, and of spirituality in the Upanishads. This has inspired later Hindu scholars such as Adi Shankara to classify each Veda into karma-kanda (कर्म खण्ड, action/ritual-related sections) and jnana-kanda (ज्ञान खण्ड, knowledge/spirituality-related sections).
The texts considered 'Vedic' in the sense of 'corollaries of the Vedas' is less clearly defined, and may include numerous post-Vedic texts such as the later Upanishads and the Sutra literature. Texts not considered to be shruti are known as smriti (Sanskrit: smṛti; 'the remembered'), or texts of remembered traditions. This indigenous system of categorization was adopted by Max Müller and, while it is subject to some debate, it is still widely used. As Axel Michaels explains:
These classifications are often not tenable for linguistic and formal reasons: There is not only one collection at any one time, but rather several handed down in separate Vedic schools; Upanişads .. are sometimes not to be distinguished from Āraṇyakas..; Brāhmaṇas contain older strata of language attributed to the Saṃhitās; there are various dialects and locally prominent traditions of the Vedic schools. Nevertheless, it is advisable to stick to the division adopted by Max Müller because it follows the Indian tradition, conveys the historical sequence fairly accurately, and underlies the current editions, translations, and monographs on Vedic literature.'
The Upanishads are largely philosophical works, some in dialogue form. They are the foundation of Hindu philosophical thought and its diverse traditions. Of the Vedic corpus, they alone are widely known, and the central ideas of the Upanishads are at the spiritual core of Hindus.
Vedic schools or recensions
The four Vedas were transmitted in various śākhās (branches, schools). Each school likely represented an ancient community of a particular area, or kingdom. Each school followed its own canon. Multiple recensions are known for each of the Vedas. Thus, states Witzel as well as Renou, in the 2nd millennium BCE, there was likely no canon of one broadly accepted Vedic texts, no Vedic “Scripture”, but only a canon of various texts accepted by each school. Some of these texts have survived, most lost or yet to be found. Rigveda that survives in modern times, for example, is in only one extremely well preserved school of Śåkalya, from a region called Videha, in modern north Bihar, south of Nepal. The Vedic canon in its entirety consists of texts from all the various Vedic schools taken together.
Each of the four Vedas were shared by the numerous schools, but revised, interpolated and adapted locally, in and after the Vedic period, giving rise to various recensions of the text. Some texts were revised into the modern era, raising significant debate on parts of the text which are believed to have been corrupted at a later date. The Vedas each have an Index or Anukramani, the principal work of this kind being the general Index or Sarvānukramaṇī.
Prodigious energy was expended by ancient Indian culture in ensuring that these texts were transmitted from generation to generation with inordinate fidelity. For example, memorization of the sacred Vedas included up to eleven forms of recitation of the same text. The texts were subsequently 'proof-read' by comparing the different recited versions. Forms of recitation included the jaṭā-pāṭha (literally 'mesh recitation') in which every two adjacent words in the text were first recited in their original order, then repeated in the reverse order, and finally repeated in the original order. That these methods have been effective, is attested to by the preservation of the most ancient Indian religious text, the Rigveda, as redacted into a single text during the Brahmana period, without any variant readings within that school.
The Vedas were likely written down for the first time around 500 BCE. However, all printed editions of the Vedas that survive in the modern times are likely the version existing in about the 16th century AD.
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Karaka Katha Samhita
Kapisthala Kahta Samhita
The canonical division of the Vedas is fourfold (turīya) viz.,
- Rigveda (RV)
- Yajurveda (YV, with the main division TS vs. VS)
- Samaveda (SV)
- Atharvaveda (AV)
Of these, the first three were the principal original division, also called 'trayī vidyā'; that is, 'the triple science' of reciting hymns (Rigveda), performing sacrifices (Yajurveda), and chanting songs (Samaveda). The Rigveda is the oldest work, which Witzel states are probably from the period of 1900 to 1100 BCE. Witzel, also notes that it is the Vedic period itself, where incipient lists divide the Vedic texts into three (trayī) or four branches: Rig, Yajur, Sama and Atharva.
Each Veda has been subclassified into four major text types – the Samhitas (mantras and benedictions), the Aranyakas (text on rituals, ceremonies such as newborn baby's rites of passage, coming of age, marriages, retirement and cremation, sacrifices and symbolic sacrifices), the Brahmanas (commentaries on rituals, ceremonies and sacrifices), and the Upanishads (text discussing meditation, philosophy and spiritual knowledge). The Upasanas (short ritual worship-related sections) are considered by some scholars as the fifth part. Witzel notes that the rituals, rites and ceremonies described in these ancient texts reconstruct to a large degree the Indo-European marriage rituals observed in a region spanning the Indian subcontinent, Persia and the European area, and some greater details are found in the Vedic era texts such as the Grhya Sūtras.
Only one version of the Rigveda is known to have survived into the modern era. Several different versions of the Sama Veda and the Atharva Veda are known, and many different versions of the Yajur Veda have been found in different parts of South Asia.
RigvedaNasadiya Sukta (Hymn of non-Eternity):
Who really knows?
Who can here proclaim it?
Whence, whence this creation sprang?
Gods came later, after the creation of this universe.
Who then knows whence it has arisen?
Whether God's will created it, or whether He was mute;
Only He who is its overseer in highest heaven knows,
—Rig Veda 10.129.6–7
The Rigveda Samhita is the oldest extant Indic text. It is a collection of 1,028 Vedic Sanskrithymns and 10,600 verses in all, organized into ten books (Sanskrit: mandalas). The hymns are dedicated to Rigvedic deities.
The books were composed by poets from different priestly groups over a period of several centuries from roughly the second half of the 2nd millennium BCE (the early Vedic period), starting with the Punjab (Sapta Sindhu) region of the northwest Indian subcontinent. The Rigveda is structured based on clear principles – the Veda begins with a small book addressed to Agni, Indra, Soma and other gods, all arranged according to decreasing total number of hymns in each deity collection; for each deity series, the hymns progress from longer to shorter ones, but the number of hymns per book increases. Finally, the meter too is systematically arranged from jagati and tristubh to anustubh and gayatri as the text progresses. In terms of substance, the nature of hymns shift from praise of deities in early books to Nasadiya Sukta with questions such as, 'what is the origin of the universe?, do even gods know the answer?', the virtue of Dāna (charity) in society, and other metaphysical issues in its hymns.
There are similarities between the mythology, rituals and linguistics in Rigveda and those found in ancient central Asia, Iranian and Hindukush (Afghanistan) regions.
The Samaveda Samhita consists of 1549 stanzas, taken almost entirely (except for 75 mantras) from the Rigveda. The Samaveda samhita has two major parts. The first part includes four melody collections (gāna, गान) and the second part three verse “books” (ārcika, आर्चिक). A melody in the song books corresponds to a verse in the arcika books. Just as in the Rigveda, the early sections of Samaveda typically begin with hymns to Agni and Indra but shift to the abstract. Their meters shift also in a descending order. The songs in the later sections of the Samaveda have the least deviation from the hymns derived from the Rigveda.
In the Samaveda, some of the Rigvedic verses are repeated. Including repetitions, there are a total of 1875 verses numbered in the Samaveda recension translated by Griffith. Two major recensions have survived, the Kauthuma/Ranayaniya and the Jaiminiya. Its purpose was liturgical, and they were the repertoire of the udgātṛ or 'singer' priests.
The Yajurveda Samhita consists of prose mantras. It is a compilation of ritual offering formulas that were said by a priest while an individual performed ritual actions such as those before the yajna fire.
The earliest and most ancient layer of Yajurveda samhita includes about 1,875 verses, that are distinct yet borrow and build upon the foundation of verses in Rigveda. Unlike the Samaveda which is almost entirely based on Rigveda mantras and structured as songs, the Yajurveda samhitas are in prose and linguistically, they are different from earlier Vedic texts. The Yajur Veda has been the primary source of information about sacrifices during Vedic times and associated rituals.
There are two major groups of texts in this Veda: the 'Black' (Krishna) and the 'White' (Shukla). The term 'black' implies 'the un-arranged, motley collection' of verses in Yajurveda, in contrast to the 'white' (well arranged) Yajurveda. The White Yajurveda separates the Samhita from its Brahmana (the Shatapatha Brahmana), the Black Yajurveda intersperses the Samhita with Brahmana commentary. Of the Black Yajurveda, texts from four major schools have survived (Maitrayani, Katha, Kapisthala-Katha, Taittiriya), while of the White Yajurveda, two (Kanva and Madhyandina). The youngest layer of Yajurveda text is not related to rituals nor sacrifice, it includes the largest collection of primary Upanishads, influential to various schools of Hindu philosophy.
The Artharvaveda Samhita is the text 'belonging to the Atharvan and Angirasa poets. It has about 760 hymns, and about 160 of the hymns are in common with the Rigveda. Most of the verses are metrical, but some sections are in prose. Two different versions of the text – the Paippalāda and the Śaunakīya – have survived into the modern times. The Atharvaveda was not considered as a Veda in the Vedic era, and was accepted as a Veda in late 1st millennium BCE. It was compiled last, probably around 900 BCE, although some of its material may go back to the time of the Rigveda, or earlier.
The Atharvaveda is sometimes called the 'Veda of magical formulas', an epithet declared to be incorrect by other scholars. The Samhita layer of the text likely represents a developing 2nd millennium BCE tradition of magico-religious rites to address superstitious anxiety, spells to remove maladies believed to be caused by demons, and herbs- and nature-derived potions as medicine. The text, states Kenneth Zysk, is one of oldest surviving record of the evolutionary practices in religious medicine and reveals the 'earliest forms of folk healing of Indo-European antiquity'. Many books of the Atharvaveda Samhita are dedicated to rituals without magic, such as to philosophical speculations and to theosophy.
The Atharva veda has been a primary source for information about Vedic culture, the customs and beliefs, the aspirations and frustrations of everyday Vedic life, as well as those associated with kings and governance. The text also includes hymns dealing with the two major rituals of passage – marriage and cremation. The Atharva Veda also dedicates significant portion of the text asking the meaning of a ritual.
Embedded Vedic texts
The Brahmanas are commentaries, explanation of proper methods and meaning of Vedic Samhita rituals in the four Vedas. They also incorporate myths, legends and in some cases philosophy. Each regional Vedic shakha (school) has its own operating manual-like Brahmana text, most of which have been lost. A total of 19 Brahmana texts have survived into modern times: two associated with the Rigveda, six with the Yajurveda, ten with the Samaveda and one with the Atharvaveda. The oldest dated to about 900 BCE, while the youngest Brahmanas (such as the Shatapatha Brahmana), were complete by about 700 BCE. According to Jan Gonda, the final codification of the Brahmanas took place in pre-Buddhist times (ca. 600 BCE).
The substance of the Brahmana text varies with each Veda. For example, the first chapter of the Chandogya Brahmana, one of the oldest Brahmanas, includes eight ritual suktas (hymns) for the ceremony of marriage and rituals at the birth of a child. The first hymn is a recitation that accompanies offering a Yajna oblation to Agni (fire) on the occasion of a marriage, and the hymn prays for prosperity of the couple getting married. The second hymn wishes for their long life, kind relatives, and a numerous progeny. The third hymn is a mutual marriage pledge, between the bride and groom, by which the two bind themselves to each other. The sixth through last hymns of the first chapter in Chandogya Brahmana are ritual celebrations on the birth of a child and wishes for health, wealth, and prosperity with a profusion of cows and artha. However, these verses are incomplete expositions, and their complete context emerges only with the Samhita layer of text.
How many seasons of the office total. Wanting a party everyone suggests ideas for a theme: tropical, topless, etc.
Aranyakas and Upanishads
The Aranyakas layer of the Vedas include rituals, discussion of symbolic meta-rituals, as well as philosophical speculations.
Aranyakas, however, neither are homogeneous in content nor in structure. They are a medley of instructions and ideas, and some include chapters of Upanishads within them. Two theories have been proposed on the origin of the word Aranyakas. One theory holds that these texts were meant to be studied in a forest, while the other holds that the name came from these being the manuals of allegorical interpretation of sacrifices, for those in Vanaprastha (retired, forest-dwelling) stage of their life, according to the historic age-based Ashrama system of human life.
The Upanishads reflect the last composed layer of texts in the Vedas. They are commonly referred to as Vedānta, variously interpreted to mean either the 'last chapters, parts of the Vedas' or 'the object, the highest purpose of the Veda'. The concepts of Brahman (Ultimate Reality) and Ātman (Soul, Self) are central ideas in all the Upanishads, and 'Know your Ātman' their thematic focus. The Upanishads are the foundation of Hindu philosophical thought and its diverse traditions. Of the Vedic corpus, they alone are widely known, and the central ideas of the Upanishads have influenced the diverse traditions of Hinduism.
Aranyakas are sometimes identified as karma-kanda (ritualistic section), while the Upanishads are identified as jnana-kanda (spirituality section). In an alternate classification, the early part of Vedas are called Samhitas and the commentary are called the Brahmanas which together are identified as the ceremonial karma-kanda, while Aranyakas and Upanishads are referred to as the jnana-kanda.
The Vedangas developed towards the end of the vedic period, around or after the middle of the 1st millennium BCE. These auxiliary fields of Vedic studies emerged because the language of the Vedas, composed centuries earlier, became too archaic to the people of that time. The Vedangas were sciences that focused on helping understand and interpret the Vedas that had been composed many centuries earlier.
The six subjects of Vedanga are phonetics (Śikṣā), poetic meter (Chandas), grammar (Vyākaraṇa), etymology and linguistics (Nirukta), rituals and rites of passage (Kalpa), time keeping and astronomy (Jyotiṣa).
Vedangas developed as ancillary studies for the Vedas, but its insights into meters, structure of sound and language, grammar, linguistic analysis and other subjects influenced post-Vedic studies, arts, culture and various schools of Hindu philosophy. The Kalpa Vedanga studies, for example, gave rise to the Dharma-sutras, which later expanded into Dharma-shastras.
Pariśiṣṭa 'supplement, appendix' is the term applied to various ancillary works of Vedic literature, dealing mainly with details of ritual and elaborations of the texts logically and chronologically prior to them: the Samhitas, Brahmanas, Aranyakas and Sutras. Naturally classified with the Veda to which each pertains, Parisista works exist for each of the four Vedas. However, only the literature associated with the Atharvaveda is extensive.
- The Āśvalāyana Gṛhya Pariśiṣṭa is a very late text associated with the Rigveda canon.
- The Gobhila Gṛhya Pariśiṣṭa is a short metrical text of two chapters, with 113 and 95 verses respectively.
- The Kātiya Pariśiṣṭas, ascribed to Kātyāyana, consist of 18 works enumerated self-referentially in the fifth of the series (the Caraṇavyūha) and the Kātyāyana Śrauta Sūtra Pariśiṣṭa.
- The KṛṣṇaYajurveda has 3 parisistas The Āpastamba Hautra Pariśiṣṭa, which is also found as the second praśna of the Satyasāḍha Śrauta Sūtra', the Vārāha Śrauta Sūtra Pariśiṣṭa
- For the Atharvaveda, there are 79 works, collected as 72 distinctly named parisistas.
The term upaveda ('applied knowledge') is used in traditional literature to designate the subjects of certain technical works. Lists of what subjects are included in this class differ among sources.The Charanavyuha mentions four Upavedas:
- Archery (Dhanurveda), associated with the Yajurveda
- Architecture (Sthapatyaveda), associated with the Atharvaveda.
- Music and sacred dance (Gāndharvaveda), associated with the Samaveda
- Medicine (Āyurveda), associated with either the Rigveda or the Atharvaveda.
'Fifth' and other Vedas
Some post-Vedic texts, including the Mahabharata, the Natyasastra and certain Puranas, refer to themselves as the 'fifth Veda'. The earliest reference to such a 'fifth Veda' is found in the Chandogya Upanishad in hymn 7.1.2.
Let drama and dance (Nātya, नाट्य) be the fifth vedic scripture. Combined with an epic story, tending to virtue, wealth, joy and spiritual freedom, it must contain the significance of every scripture, and forward every art. Thus, from all the Vedas, Brahma framed the Nātya Veda. From the Rig Veda he drew forth the words, from the Sama Veda the melody, from the Yajur Veda gesture, and from the Atharva Veda the sentiment.
'Divya Prabandha', for example Tiruvaymoli, is a term for canonical Tamil texts considered as Vernacular Veda by some South Indian Hindus.
Other texts such as the Bhagavad Gita or the Vedanta Sutras are considered shruti or 'Vedic' by some Hindu denominations but not universally within Hinduism. The Bhakti movement, and Gaudiya Vaishnavism in particular extended the term veda to include the Sanskrit Epics and Vaishnavite devotional texts such as the Pancaratra.
The Puranas is a vast genre of encyclopedic Indian literature about a wide range of topics particularly myths, legends and other traditional lore. Several of these texts are named after major Hindu deities such as Vishnu, Shiva and Devi. There are 18 Maha Puranas (Great Puranas) and 18 Upa Puranas (Minor Puranas), with over 400,000 verses.
The Puranas have been influential in the Hindu culture. They are considered Vaidika (congruent with Vedic literature). The Bhagavata Purana has been among the most celebrated and popular text in the Puranic genre, and is of non-dualistic tenor. The Puranic literature wove with the Bhakti movement in India, and both Dvaita and Advaita scholars have commented on the underlying Vedanta themes in the Maha Puranas.
The study of Sanskrit in the West began in the 17th century. In the early 19th century, Arthur Schopenhauer drew attention to Vedic texts, specifically the Upanishads.The importance of Vedic Sanskrit for Indo-European studies was also recognized in the early 19th century.English translations of the Samhitas were published in the later 19th century, in the Sacred Books of the East series edited by Müller between 1879 and 1910.Ralph T. H. Griffith also presented English translations of the four Samhitas, published 1889 to 1899.
Voltaire regarded Vedas to be exceptional, he remarked that:
The Veda was the most precious gift for which the West had ever been indebted to the East.
Rigveda manuscripts were selected for inscription in UNESCO's Memory of the WorldRegister in 2007.
- ^'As a skilled craftsman makes a car, a singer I, Mighty One! this hymn for thee have fashioned. If thou, O Agni, God, accept it gladly, may we obtain thereby the heavenly Waters'. – Rigveda 5.2.11, Translated by Ralph T.H. Griffith
- ^Elisa Freschi (2012): The Vedas are not deontic authorities in absolute sense and may be disobeyed, but are recognized as an deontological epistemic authority by a Hindu orthodox school; (Note: This differentiation between epistemic and deontic authority is true for all Indian religions)
- ^The early Buddhist texts are also generally believed to be of oral tradition, with the first Pali Canon written many centuries after the death of the Buddha.
- ^'Veda'. Random House Webster's Unabridged Dictionary.
- ^see e.g. Radhakrishnan & Moore 1957, p. 3; Witzel, Michael, 'Vedas and Upaniṣads', in: Flood 2003, p. 68; MacDonell 2004, pp. 29–39; Sanskrit literature (2003) in Philip's Encyclopedia. Accessed 2007-08-09
- ^Sanujit Ghose (2011). 'Religious Developments in Ancient India' in Ancient History Encyclopedia.
- ^Vaman Shivaram Apte, The Practical Sanskrit–English Dictionary, see apauruSeya
- ^D Sharma, Classical Indian Philosophy: A Reader, Columbia University Press, pp. 196–197[ISBN missing]
- ^Jan Westerhoff (2009), Nagarjuna's Madhyamaka: A Philosophical Introduction, Oxford University Press, ISBN978-0195384963, p. 290
- ^Warren Lee Todd (2013), The Ethics of Śaṅkara and Śāntideva: A Selfless Response to an Illusory World, ISBN978-1409466819, p. 128
- ^Apte 1965, p. 887
- ^Sheldon Pollock (2011), Boundaries, Dynamics and Construction of Traditions in South Asia (Editor: Federico Squarcini), Anthem, ISBN978-0857284303, pp. 41–58
- ^ abHartmut Scharfe (2002), Handbook of Oriental Studies, Brill Academic, ISBN978-9004125568, pp. 13–14
- ^Seer of the Fifth Veda: Kr̥ṣṇa Dvaipāyana Vyāsa in the Mahābhārata Bruce M. Sullivan, Motilal Banarsidass, pp. 85–86
- ^'The Rig Veda/Mandala 5/Hymn 2'.
- ^Holdrege, Barbara A. (2012). Veda and Torah: Transcending the Textuality of Scripture. SUNY Press. pp. 249, 250. ISBN9781438406954.
- ^Dalal, Roshen (15 April 2014). The Vedas: An Introduction to Hinduism's Sacred Texts. Penguin UK. ISBN9788184757637.
- ^ abcGavin Flood (1996), An Introduction to Hinduism, Cambridge University Press, ISBN978-0521438780, pp. 35–39
- ^Bloomfield, M. The Atharvaveda and the Gopatha-Brahmana, (Grundriss der Indo-Arischen Philologie und Altertumskunde II.1.b.) Strassburg 1899; Gonda, J. A history of Indian literature: I.1 Vedic literature (Samhitas and Brahmanas); I.2 The Ritual Sutras. Wiesbaden 1975, 1977
- ^ abA Bhattacharya (2006), Hindu Dharma: Introduction to Scriptures and Theology, ISBN978-0595384556, pp. 8–14; George M. Williams (2003), Handbook of Hindu Mythology, Oxford University Press, ISBN978-0195332612, p. 285
- ^ abJan Gonda (1975), Vedic Literature: (Saṃhitās and Brāhmaṇas), Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, ISBN978-3447016032
- ^ abcdA Bhattacharya (2006), Hindu Dharma: Introduction to Scriptures and Theology, ISBN978-0595384556, pp. 8–14
- ^ abcBarbara A. Holdrege (1995), Veda and Torah: Transcending the Textuality of Scripture, State University of New York Press, ISBN978-0791416402, pp. 351–357
- ^Elisa Freschi (2012), Duty, Language and Exegesis in Prabhakara Mimamsa, Brill, ISBN978-9004222601, p. 62
- ^ abFlood 1996, p. 82
- ^'astika' and 'nastika'. Encyclopædia Britannica Online, 20 Apr. 2016
- ^Monier-Williams 2006, p. 1015; Apte 1965, p. 856
- ^see e.g. Pokorny's 1959 Indogermanisches etymologisches Wörterbuch s.v. u̯(e)id-²; Rix' Lexikon der indogermanischen Verben, u̯ei̯d-.
- ^Monier-Williams, Monier (1899). A Sanskrit-English dictionary : etymologically and philologically arranged with special reference to cognate Indo-European languages. Oxford: Clarendon Press., p. 1015
- ^Monier-Williams, Monier (1899). A Sanskrit-English dictionary : etymologically and philologically arranged with special reference to cognate Indo-European languages. Oxford: Clarendon Press., p. 1017 (2nd Column)
- ^Monier-Williams, Monier (1899). A Sanskrit-English dictionary : etymologically and philologically arranged with special reference to cognate Indo-European languages. Oxford: Clarendon Press., p. 1017 (3rd Column)
- ^Sanskrit: यः समिधा य आहुती यो वेदेन ददाश मर्तो अग्नये । यो नमसा स्वध्वरः ॥५॥, ऋग्वेद: सूक्तं ८.१९, Wikisource
- ^K.F. Geldner, Der Rig-Veda, Harvard Oriental Series 33–37, Cambridge 1951
- ^HH Wilson, Rig-veda Sanhita Sixth Ashtaka, First Adhayaya, Sukta VII (8.19.5), p. 291, Trubner London
- ^Vasudha Narayanan (1994), The Vernacular Veda: Revelation, Recitation, and Ritual, University of South Carolina Press, ISBN978-0872499652, p. 194
- ^ abJohn Carman (1989), The Tamil Veda: Pillan's Interpretation of the Tiruvaymoli, University of Chicago Press, ISBN978-0226093055, pp. 259–261
- ^ abVasudha Narayanan (1994), The Vernacular Veda: Revelation, Recitation, and Ritual, University of South Carolina Press, ISBN978-0872499652, pp. 43, 117–119
- ^Sagarika Dutt (2006). India in a Globalized World. Manchester University Press. p. 36. ISBN978-1-84779-607-3.
- ^Gabriel J. Gomes (2012). Discovering World Religions. iUniverse. p. 54. ISBN978-1-4697-1037-2.
- ^Lucas F. Johnston, Whitney Bauman (2014). Science and Religion: One Planet, Many Possibilities. Routledge. p. 179.
- ^Gavin Flood sums up mainstream estimates, according to which the Rigveda was compiled from as early as 1500 BCE over a period of several centuries. Flood 1996, p. 37
- ^Witzel, Michael, 'Vedas and Upaniṣads', in: Flood 2003, p. 68
- ^ abDonald S. Lopez Jr. (1995). 'Authority and Orality in the Mahāyāna'. Numen. 42 (1): 21–47. JSTOR3270278.
- ^Witzel, Michael, 'Vedas and Upaniṣads', in: Flood 2003, p. 69; For oral composition and oral transmission for 'many hundreds of years' before being written down, see: Avari 2007, p. 76.
- ^ abJack Goody (1987). The Interface Between the Written and the Oral. Cambridge University Press. pp. 110–121. ISBN978-0-521-33794-6.
- ^Brodd, Jeffrey (2003), World Religions, Winona, MN: Saint Mary's Press, ISBN978-0-88489-725-5
- ^Jamison, Stephanie W.; Brereton, Joel P. (2014). The Rigveda. vol. 1. Oxford University Press. p. 18. ISBN978-0-19-972078-1.
- ^'Cultural Heritage of Nepal'. Nepal-German Manuscript Preservation Project. University of Hamburg. Archived from the original on 18 September 2014. Retrieved 4 November 2014.
- ^Buswell, Robert E.; Lopez, Jr., Donald S. (2013). The Princeton dictionary of Buddhism. Princeton: Princeton University Press. ISBN9781400848058. Entry on 'Nālandā'.
- ^Frazier, Jessica, ed. (2011). The Continuum companion to Hindu studies. London: Continuum. p. 34. ISBN978-0-8264-9966-0.
- ^Walton, Linda (2015). 'Educational institutions' in The Cambridge World History Vol. 5. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 122. ISBN978-0-521-19074-9.
- ^Sukumar Dutt (1988) [First published in 1962]. Buddhist Monks And Monasteries of India: Their History And Contribution To Indian Culture. George Allen and Unwin Ltd, London. ISBN81-208-0498-8. pp. 332–333
- ^according to ISKCON, Hindu Sacred Texts, 'Hindus themselves often use the term to describe anything connected to the Vedas and their corollaries (e.g. Vedic culture)'.
- ^37,575 are Rigvedic. Of the remaining, 34,857 appear in the other three Samhitas, and 16,405 are known only from Brahmanas, Upanishads or Sutras
- ^Klaus Klostermaier (1994), A Survey of Hinduism, Second Edition, State University of New York Press, ISBN978-0791421093, pp. 67–69
- ^ abBrahmana Encyclopædia Britannica (2013)
- ^ abcJan Gonda (1975), Vedic Literature: (Saṃhitās and Brāhmaṇas), Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, ISBN978-3447016032, pp. 424–426
- ^ abcdMichaels 2004, p. 51.
- ^ abWitzel, Michael, 'Vedas and Upaniṣads', in: Flood 2003, p. 69.
- ^For a table of all Vedic texts see Witzel, Michael, 'Vedas and Upaniṣads', in: Flood 2003, pp. 100–101.
- ^The Vedic Sanskrit corpus is incorporated in A Vedic Word Concordance (Vaidika-Padānukrama-Koṣa) prepared from 1930 under Vishva Bandhu, and published in five volumes in 1935–1965. Its scope extends to about 400 texts, including the entire Vedic Sanskrit corpus besides some 'sub-Vedic' texts. Volume I: Samhitas, Volume II: Brahmanas and Aranyakas, Volume III: Upanishads, Volume IV: Vedangas; A revised edition, extending to about 1800 pages, was published in 1973–1976.
- ^Flood 2003, pp. 100–101
- ^Edward Roer (Translator), Shankara's Introduction at Google Books to Brihad Aranyaka Upanishad at pp. 1–5; Quote: 'The Vedas are divided in two parts, the first is the karma-kanda, the ceremonial part, also (called) purva-kanda, and treats on ceremonies; the second part is the jnana kanda, the part which contains knowledge, also named uttara-kanda or posterior part, and unfolds the knowledge of Brahma or the universal soul.'
- ^ abcdWendy Doniger (1990), Textual Sources for the Study of Hinduism, 1st Edition, University of Chicago Press, ISBN978-0226618470, pp. 2–3; Quote: 'The Upanishads supply the basis of later Hindu philosophy; they alone of the Vedic corpus are widely known and quoted by most well-educated Hindus, and their central ideas have also become a part of the spiritual arsenal of rank-and-file Hindus.'
- ^Wiman Dissanayake (1993), Self as Body in Asian Theory and Practice (Editors: Thomas P. Kasulis et al.), State University of New York Press, ISBN978-0791410806, p. 39; Quote: 'The Upanishads form the foundations of Hindu philosophical thought and the central theme of the Upanishads is the identity of Atman and Brahman, or the inner self and the cosmic self.';
Michael McDowell and Nathan Brown (2009), World Religions, Penguin, ISBN978-1592578467, pp. 208–210
- ^Patrick Olivelle (2014), The Early Upanisads, Oxford University Press, ISBN978-0195352429, p. 3; Quote: 'Even though theoretically the whole of vedic corpus is accepted as revealed truth [shruti], in reality it is the Upanishads that have continued to influence the life and thought of the various religious traditions that we have come to call Hindu. Upanishads are the scriptures par excellence of Hinduism'.
- ^ abFlood 1996, p. 39.
- ^ abcdeWitzel, M., 'The Development of the Vedic Canon and its Schools : The Social and Political Milieu', Harvard University, in Witzel 1997, pp. 261–264
- ^ abJamison and Witzel (1992), Vedic Hinduism, Harvard University, p. 6
- ^J. Muir (1868), Original Sanskrit Texts on the Origin and History of the People of India – their religion and institutions at Google Books, 2nd Edition, p. 12
- ^Albert Friedrich Weber, Indische Studien, herausg. von at Google Books, Vol. 10, pp. 1–9 with footnotes (in German); For a translation, Original Sanskrit Texts at Google Books, p. 14
- ^For an example, see Sarvānukramaṇī Vivaraṇa Univ of Pennsylvania rare texts collection
- ^R̥gveda-sarvānukramaṇī Śaunakakr̥tāʼnuvākānukramaṇī ca, Maharṣi-Kātyayāna-viracitā, OCLC11549595
- ^(Staal 1986)
- ^ ab(Filliozat 2004, p. 139)
- ^Avari 2007, pp. 69–70
- ^Michael Witzel, 'Vedas and Upaniṣads', in: Flood 2003, p. 69, Quote: '.. almost all printed editions depend on the late manuscripts that are hardly older than 500 years'
- ^Radhakrishnan & Moore 1957, p. 3; Witzel, Michael, 'Vedas and Upaniṣads', in: Flood 2003, p. 68
- ^Witzel, M., 'The Development of the Vedic Canon and its Schools : The Social and Political Milieu' in Witzel 1997, pp. 257–348
- ^MacDonell 2004, pp. 29–39
- ^Jamison and Witzel (1992), Vedic Hinduism, Harvard University, p. 21
- ^Witzel, M., 'The Development of the Vedic Canon and its Schools : The Social and Political Milieu' in Witzel 1997, p. 286
- ^ ab
- Original Sanskrit: Rigveda 10.129 Wikisource;
- Translation 1: Max Müller (1859). A History of Ancient Sanskrit Literature. Williams and Norgate, London. pp. 559–565.
- Translation 2: Kenneth Kramer (1986). World Scriptures: An Introduction to Comparative Religions. Paulist Press. p. 21. ISBN978-0-8091-2781-8.
- Translation 3: David Christian (2011). Maps of Time: An Introduction to Big History. University of California Press. pp. 17–18. ISBN978-0-520-95067-2.
- ^see e.g. Avari 2007, p. 77.
- ^For 1,028 hymns and 10,600 verses and division into ten mandalas, see: Avari 2007, p. 77.
- ^For characterization of content and mentions of deities including Agni, Indra, Varuna, Soma, Surya, etc. see: Avari 2007, p. 77.
- ^see e.g. Avari 2007, p. 77 Max Müller gave 1700–1100 BCE, Michael Witzel gives 1450–1350 BCE as terminus ad quem.
- ^Original text translated in English: The Rig Veda, Mandala 10, Hymn 117, Ralph T.H. Griffith (Translator);
C Chatterjee (1995), Values in the Indian Ethos: An Overview, Journal of Human Values, Vol. 1, No. 1, pp. 3–12
- '^For example,
Hymn 1.164.34, 'What is the ultimate limit of the earth?', 'What is the center of the universe?', 'What is the semen of the cosmic horse?', 'What is the ultimate source of human speech?'
Hymn 1.164.34, 'Who gave blood, soul, spirit to the earth?', 'How could the unstructured universe give origin to this structured world?'
Hymn 1.164.5, 'Where does the sun hide in the night?', 'Where do gods live?'
Hymn 1.164.6, 'What, where is the unborn support for the born universe?';
Hymn 1.164.20 (a hymn that is widely cited in the Upanishads as the parable of the Body and the Soul): 'Two birds with fair wings, inseparable companions; Have found refuge in the same sheltering tree. One incessantly eats from the fig tree; the other, not eating, just looks on.';
Sources: (a) Antonio de Nicholas (2003), Meditations Through the Rig Veda: Four-Dimensional Man, ISBN978-0595269259, pp. 64–69;
Jan Gonda, A History of Indian Literature: Veda and Upanishads, Volume 1, Part 1, Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, ISBN978-3447016032, pp. 134–135;
Rigveda Book 1, Hymn 164 Wikisource
- ^Michael Witzel, The Rigvedic religious system and its central Asian and Hindukush antecedents, in The Vedas – Texts, Language and Ritual, Editors: Griffiths and Houben (2004), Brill Academic, ISBN978-9069801490, pp. 581–627
- ^(from sāman, the term for a melody applied to a metrical hymn or a song of praise, Apte 1965, p. 981.
- ^ abcWitzel, M., 'The Development of the Vedic Canon and its Schools : The Social and Political Milieu' in Witzel 1997, pp. 269–270
- ^M Bloomfield, Rig-veda Repetitions, p. 402, at Google Books, pp. 402–464
- ^For 1875 total verses, see the numbering given in Ralph T. H. Griffith. Griffith's introduction mentions the recension history for his text. Repetitions may be found by consulting the cross-index in Griffith pp. 491–499.
- ^Annette Wilke and Oliver Moebus (2011), Sound and Communication: An Aesthetic Cultural History of Sanskrit Hinduism, Walter de Gruyter, ISBN978-3110181593, p. 381
- ^ abMichael Witzel (2003), 'Vedas and Upaniṣads', in The Blackwell Companion to Hinduism (Editor: Gavin Flood), Blackwell, ISBN0-631215352, pp. 76–77
- ^Antonio de Nicholas (2003), Meditations Through the Rig Veda: Four-Dimensional Man, ISBN978-0595269259, pp. 273–274
- ^Witzel, M., 'The Development of the Vedic Canon and its Schools : The Social and Political Milieu' in Witzel 1997, pp. 270–271
- ^Witzel, M., 'The Development of the Vedic Canon and its Schools : The Social and Political Milieu' in Witzel 1997, pp. 272–274
- ^Paul Deussen, Sixty Upanishads of the Veda, Volume 1, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN978-8120814684, pp. 217–219
- ^Michaels 2004, p. 52 Table 3
- ^CL Prabhakar (1972), The Recensions of the Sukla Yajurveda, Archív Orientální, Volume 40, Issue 1, pp. 347–353
- ^Paul Deussen, The Philosophy of the Upanishads, Motilal Banarsidass (2011 Edition), ISBN978-8120816206, p. 23
- ^Patrick Olivelle (1998), Upaniṣhads, Oxford University Press, ISBN0-19-282292-6, pp. 1–17
- ^ abcdMichaels 2004, p. 56.
- ^Frits Staal (2009), Discovering the Vedas: Origins, Mantras, Rituals, Insights, Penguin, ISBN978-0143099864, pp. 136–137
- ^Frits Staal (2009), Discovering the Vedas: Origins, Mantras, Rituals, Insights, Penguin, ISBN978-0143099864, p. 135
- ^Alex Wayman (1997), Untying the Knots in Buddhism, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN978-8120813212, pp. 52–53
- ^'The latest of the four Vedas, the Atharva-Veda, is, as we have seen, largely composed of magical texts and charms, but here and there we find cosmological hymns which anticipate the Upanishads, – hymns to Skambha, the 'Support', who is seen as the first principle which is both the material and efficient cause of the universe, to Prāna, the 'Breath of Life', to Vāc, the 'Word', and so on.' Zaehner 1966, p. vii.
- ^Flood 1996, p. 37.
- ^Laurie Patton (2004), Veda and Upanishad, in The Hindu World (Editors: Sushil Mittal and Gene Thursby), Routledge, ISBN0-415215277, p. 38
- ^ abJan Gonda (1975), Vedic Literature: Saṃhitās and Brāhmaṇas, Vol 1, Fasc. 1, Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, ISBN978-3447016032, pp. 277–280, Quote: 'It would be incorrect to describe the Atharvaveda Samhita as a collection of magical formulas'.
- ^Kenneth Zysk (2012), Understanding Mantras (Editor: Harvey Alper), Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN978-8120807464, pp. 123–129
- ^On magic spells and charms, such as those to gain better health: Atharva Veda 2.32 Bhaishagykni, Charm to secure perfect health Maurice Bloomfield (Translator), Sacred Books of the East, Vol. 42, Oxford University Press; see also chapters 3.11, 3.31, 4.10, 5.30, 19.26;
On finding a good husband: Atharva Veda 4.2.36 Strijaratani Maurice Bloomfield (Translator), Sacred Books of the East, Vol. 42, Oxford University Press; Atharvaveda dedicates over 30 chapters to love relationships, sexuality and for conceiving a child, see e.g. chapters 1.14, 2.30, 3.25, 6.60, 6.78, 6.82, 6.130–6.132; On peaceful social and family relationships: Atharva Veda 6.3.30 Maurice Bloomfield (Translator), Sacred Books of the East, Vol. 42, Oxford University Press;
- ^Kenneth Zysk (1993), Religious Medicine: The History and Evolution of Indian Medicine, Routledge, ISBN978-1560000761, pp. x–xii
- ^Witzel, M., 'The Development of the Vedic Canon and its Schools : The Social and Political Milieu' in Witzel 1997, pp. 275–276
- ^ abKlaus Klostermaier (1994), A Survey of Hinduism, Second Edition, State University of New York Press, ISBN978-0791421093, pp. 67–69
- ^Moriz Winternitz (2010), A History of Indian Literature, Volume 1, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN978-8120802643, pp. 175–176
- ^Michael Witzel, 'Tracing the Vedic dialects' in Dialectes dans les litteratures Indo-Aryennes ed. Caillat, Paris, 1989, 97–265.
- ^Biswas et al (1989), Cosmic Perspectives, Cambridge University Press, ISBN978-0521343541, pp. 42–43
- ^Klaus Klostermaier (1994), A Survey of Hinduism, Second Edition, State University of New York Press, ISBN978-0791421093, p. 67
- ^ abcdMax Müller, Chandogya Upanishad, The Upanishads, Part I, Oxford University Press, p. lxxxvii with footnote 2
- ^Paul Deussen, Sixty Upanishads of the Veda, Volume 1, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN978-8120814684, p. 63
- ^The Development of the Female Mind in India, p. 27, at Google Books, The Calcutta Review, Volume 60, p. 27
- ^Jan Gonda (1975), Vedic Literature: (Saṃhitās and Brāhmaṇas), Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, ISBN978-3447016032, pp. 319–322, 368–383 with footnotes
- ^AB Keith (2007), The Religion and Philosophy of the Veda and Upanishads, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN978-8120806443, pp. 489–490
- ^Max Müller, The Upanishads, Part 1, Oxford University Press, p. lxxxvi footnote 1
- ^Mahadevan 1956, p. 59.
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- ^WD Strappini, The Upanishads, p. 258, at Google Books, The Month and Catholic Review, Vol. 23, Issue 42
- ^Wiman Dissanayake (1993), Self as Body in Asian Theory and Practice (Editors: Thomas P. Kasulis et al), State University of New York Press, ISBN978-0791410806, p. 39; Quote: 'The Upanishads form the foundations of Hindu philosophical thought and the central theme of the Upanishads is the identity of Atman and Brahman, or the inner self and the cosmic self.';
Michael McDowell and Nathan Brown (2009), World Religions, Penguin, ISBN978-1592578467, pp. 208–210
- ^Patrick Olivelle (2014), The Early Upanisads, Oxford University Press, ISBN978-0195352429, p. 3; Quote: 'Even though theoretically the whole of vedic corpus is accepted as revealed truth [shruti], in reality it is the Upanishads that have continued to influence the life and thought of the various religious traditions that we have come to call Hindu. Upanishads are the scriptures par excellence of Hinduism'.
- ^See Shankara's Introduction at Google Books to Brihad Aranyaka Upanishad at pp. 1–5; Quote: 'The Vedas are divided in two parts, the first is the karma-kanda, the ceremonial part, also (called) purva-kanda, and treats on ceremonies; the second part is the jnana kanda, the part which contains knowledge, also named uttara-kanda or posterior part, and unfolds the knowledge of Brahma or the universal soul.' (Translator: Edward Roer)
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- Radhakrishnan, Sarvepalli; Moore, Charles A., eds. (1957), A Sourcebook in Indian Philosophy (12th Princeton Paperback ed.), Princeton University Press, ISBN978-0-691-01958-1
- Staal, Frits (1986), The Fidelity of Oral Tradition and the Origins of Science, Mededelingen der Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie von Wetenschappen, North Holland Publishing Company
- Smith, Brian K. (1992), 'Canonical Authority and Social Classification: Veda and 'Varṇa' in Ancient Indian Texts', History of Religions, 32 (2): 103–125, JSTOR1062753
- Sullivan, B. M. (Summer 1994), 'The Religious Authority of the Mahabharata: Vyasa and Brahma in the Hindu Scriptural Tradition', Journal of the American Academy of Religion, 62 (1): 377–401, doi:10.1093/jaarel/LXII.2.377
- Annette Wilke; Oliver Moebus (2011). Sound and Communication: An Aesthetic Cultural History of Sanskrit Hinduism. Walter de Gruyter. ISBN978-3-11-018159-3.
- Witzel, Michael (ed.) (1997), Inside the Texts, Beyond the Texts: New Approaches to the Study of the Vedas, Harvard Oriental Series, Opera Minora; vol. 2, Cambridge: Harvard University PressCS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
- Zaehner, R. C. (1966), Hindu Scriptures, Everyman's Library, London: J. M. Dent
- J. Gonda, Vedic Literature: Saṃhitās and Brāhmaṇas, A History of Indian literature. Vol. 1, Veda and Upanishads, Wiesnaden: Harrasssowitz (1975), ISBN978-3-447-01603-2.
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- S. Shrava, A Comprehensive History of Vedic Literature – Brahmana and Aranyaka Works, Pranava Prakashan (1977).
- M. Bloomfield, A Vedic Concordance (1907)
- Vishva Bandhu, Bhim Dev, S. Bhaskaran Nair (eds.), Vaidika-Padānukrama-Koṣa: A Vedic Word-Concordance, Vishveshvaranand Vedic Research Institute, Hoshiarpur, 1963–1965, revised edition 1973–1976.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Vedas.|
|Look up Veda or Vedic in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Vedas|
- Sketch of the Historical Grammar of the Rig and Atharva Vedas, Edward Vernon Arnold, Journal of the American Oriental Society
- On the History and the Present State of Vedic Tradition in Nepal, Michael Witzel
- A Vedic Concordance, Maurice Bloomfield, Harvard University (an alphabetic index to every line, every stanza of the Vedas published before 1906)
- An Enlarged Electronic Version of Bloomfield's A Vedic Concordance, Harvard University
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Vedas are also called śruti ('what is heard') literature, distinguis..more
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If an editor is known, however, Various is not necessary. List the name of the editor as the primary author (with role 'editor'). Contributing authors' names follow it.
Note: WorldCat is an excellent res..more