Thursday, September 16, 2010

A glimpse of Vedas as flashed by me on the f.b. on September 16,2010.

Bishwanath Singh: I was told that some westerners have certain misgivings about Vedas that I would like to straighten up and clear. Firstly, I would like to advice them to go through Vedas very thoroughly under the guidance of a very good teacher who is well-versed with Vedas and knows Sanskrit very well .Secondly, they must have pat...ience and full faith in Vedas and thirdly, they must go deep into Vedas with clarity of their minds without any pre-conceived notion.. Unless, they have those qualities can’t understand Vedas fully that should be very clear to all living far & wide. The Vedas are among the oldest sacred texts. The Samhitas date to roughly 1500–1000 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, spanning the Late Bronze Age and the Iron Age. 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. 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 BCE to c. 500-400 BCE. Witzel makes special reference to the Near Eastern Mitanni material of the 14th c. 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.[ The general accepted historical chronology of the Vedas ranks the Rig Veda as the first, followed by the Yajur Veda, Sama Veda and finally the Atharva Veda.Transmission of texts in the Vedic period was by oral tradition alone, preserved with precision with the help of elaborate mnemonic techniques. A literary tradition set in only in post-Vedic times, after the rise of Buddhism in the Maurya period, perhaps earliest in the Kanva recension of the Yajurveda about the 1st century BCE; however oral tradition predominated until c. 1000 CE. 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.[20] The Benares Sanskrit University has a Rigveda manuscript of the mid-14th century; however, there are a number of older Veda manuscripts in Nepal belonging to the Vajasaneyi tradition that are dated from the 11th century onwards.The canonical division of the Vedas is as follows ;1. Rig Veda (RV) 2. Yajurveda (YV, with the main division TS vs. VS) 3. Sama-Veda (SV)& 4. Atharva-Veda (A.V) Of these, the first three were the principal original division, also called "trayī vidyā", that is, "the triple sacred science" of reciting hymns (RV), performing sacrifices (YV), and chanting (SV). This triplicity is so introduced in the Brahmanas (ShB, ABr and others), but the Rigveda is the older work of the three from which the other two borrow, next to their own independent Yajus, sorcery and speculative mantras.Thus, the Mantras are properly of three forms: 1. Ric, which are verses of praise in metre, and intended for loud recitation; 2. Yajus, which are in prose, and intended for recitation in lower voice at sacrifices; 3. Sāman, which are in metre, and intended for singing at the Soma ceremonies. The Yajurveda, Samaveda and Atharvaveda are independent collections of mantras and hymns intended as manuals for the Adhvaryu, Udgatr and Brahman priests respectively. The Atharvaveda is the fourth Veda. Its status has occasionally been ambiguous, probably due to its use in sorcery and healing. However, it contains very old materials in early Vedic language. Manusmrti, which often speaks of the three Vedas, calling them trayam-brahma-sanātanam, "the triple eternal Veda". The Atharvaveda like the Rigveda, is a collection of original incantations, and other materials borrowing relatively little from the Rigveda. It has no direct relation to the solemn Śrauta sacrifices, except for the fact that the mostly silent Brahmán priest observes the procedures and uses Atharvaveda mantras to 'heal' it when mistakes have been made. Its recitation also produces long life, cures diseases, or effects the ruin of enemies.
You, Chaudhary AdEel, John Monteiro and Nikhil Singh like this.

Bishwanath Singh : Let us pay our humble obeisance's to Vedas-our holy ancient scrptures together with their author Mahasshi Ved Vyash Ji and seek their bliss for well-being of all living-betng of this universe!
September 16,2010.

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