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"In the great teaching of the Vedas, there is no touch of sectarianism. It is of all ages, climes and nationalities and is the royal road for the attainment of the Great Knowledge."

- Thoreau(American Thinker)

In religion, India is the only millionaire .... The One land that all men desire to see and having seen once, by even a glimpse, would not give that glimpse for all the shows of all the rest of the globe combined."

- Mark Twain(American Author 1835-1910)

Vedah ( Veda ) As It Is

 

CONTENTS

1. What Are Vedah ( Veda ) ? 2. Who are Vedic Gods ?
3. Rigvedah (Rigveda) As It Is : Pundit Shriram Sharma Aacharya
4. Upnishads As They Are : in Sanskrit, Hindi and English (Hind translation by Shri Harikrishndas Goyandka)
Previous Vedah Vedah ( Veda ) Home Next

What are Vedah ( Veda ) ?

Vedah ( Veda ) is a word of Sanskrit language. It means knowledge. These and associated books contain knowledge on philosophy, mathematics, medicine, astronomy, navigation, music, dance, drama...

Since time unknown they had been only in verbal form in India. Then some-body compiled them in writing. These are the oldest books of the world (These were compiled at least 6000 BC). These are mainly on devotion and philosophy. Like all great Indian compilers the compiler did not like to mention his/her name, however people attribute it to sage Veda-Vyasa.

They are compiled in complex meters and filled with various sophisticated plays on the sounds of words. They are compiled in a language (Sanskrit) which is filled with synonyms indicating a long and rich development. Above all it has an entire mysticism of sound, mantra and the Divine Word

They have been in the hearts of Indians since then. Though is not fair to confine them under a tag, but if we have to do that then they are, what is called Hindu philosophy.

Vedah ( Veda ) are four in numbers. Every Vedah ( Veda ) has three sections namely Mantra section , Brahman section and Gyana section. The Mantra section is also called Sanhita (which means collection) section. Sanhita section gets its name from the fact that it is collection of Mantras.

Mantra section contains prayers of cosmic powers as Manifestation of Brahm(GOD). Brahman sections are also referred to as Karm Kaand and Gyan section is referred to as Upnishad. Brahman section deals with the use of the mantras in the perfomance of non-violent rituals in yagya. Upnishads(Vedanta) deal with the philosophical knowledge and worship of Unmanifest Brahm (GOD).

Who are vedic gods ?

The vedic gods to whom Mantra section is devoted are nothing else but the worship of "manifested characteristics" of Nirakaar Brahm () and it is the first stage of devotion towards the Brahm.

But this is just the beginning. This devotion should grow and broaden and ultimately end into the devotion towards a Nirakaar Brahm (). Who is the one who is in every thing or who is every seeable and unseeable entity.

The Upanishads discuss the Nirakaar Brahm. The one who is beyond time, death and every thing. Every thing is in Him. Every seeable and unseeable entity is in Him.. Then the Vedah ( Veda ) say "Na Iti, Na Iti" meaning this is not the end of the description of Brahm. How can we describe completely the one who is beyond our senses ? We can only indicate. Upnishads accept the limiation of human body as it is. But with the continious effort and meditation upon Him one can realize Him without any illusion.

As per me the following is the definition of Upnishad-

"Upnishads are the collection of pearls of philosophy that are spread in the ocean of Vedah ( Veda )."

Thus though the Vedah start with indirect worship of Brahm they end up with the worship of Brahm in totality.

What is Shruti and What is Smriti (Esmriti) ?

Vedah fall under category ofShruti . This knowledge is seen by "seers" and not created by them (human). This is manifested to them by GOD and not created by them. On the other hands Esmriti are those scriptures which are written by human and need change as they are not good for all times. Manu Esmriti is of the second type.

What are Vedanga?

Vedanga means parts of vedah. These are six in number. 1) Shiksha (science of pronouncing). 2) Chanda Shastra (The meters). 3) Vyakaran Gramar 4) Nirukta To know meaning of difficult Sansktit words in right context 5)Jyotisha (Astronomy and Mathematics) 6)Kalpa (Rituals).

In depth knowledge of these is must inorder to understand Vedah. This is not an easy task. One has to go in the shelter of Gurus in Varanasi and learn for years in order to undersatnd vedah in correct context. This is the reason that initial english/german translaters like Max Muler failed badly as they were totally incapable of the job. They did not realize what they were dealing with. The astronomy and mathematics was also not mature enough in west to undersatnd the ideas described in vedah in subtle form.

Now as the science (physics, math and astronomy) has grown intellectuals are getting astonished by the revalations of indian Vedah. Just to name a few in rigvedah people knew lunar calendar (consisting of 12 months and one adhika maas)...they knew speed of light...yantras shows complex geometrical math..We use zero and indian numerals as it is today....these are just a few.

What is Yagya?

Yagya are of two types physical yagya and Mental and Karma Yagya. In physical yagya the following are required. 1) A Yajmaan (the person who wishes the yagya to be performed. 2) A Hwawan Kund , a structure in which fire is lit. 3) A vedi (a structure on which geometrical patterns (yantras) are made to invoke gods) 4) A priest (who recites mantra) 5) Hawan Samagree - which could be ghrit (smilar to claridied butter), water or leaves 6) And Bhog (different fruits or water with sugar)which means offerings.

The priest invokes GOD and the Havan Kund is considered the mouth of GOD. The Yajmaan feeds Havan Samgree with affection to GOD as the Mantra are recited. Just as a mother fedds to a child, Yajmaan feeds with love to GOD. The Havan Samgree smells good. We can offer to GOD water, leaf, rice or any thing pious.

In Mental and Karma Yagya we have to give up our selfishness, ego, anger and desires. We have to burn our selfishness. Any karma of Dharma is a Yagya as we have to give up our self-interest.

Yagya are done for the benefits of society and Vedah strongly advocate non-violence without any exception. After physical yagya is done GOD is considered to have eaten the Bhog(different fruits or water with sugar), which is then distributed to people gathered at the place.

Every hindu marriage is done with a yagya. This has been continious since at least 6000 years before Buddha. In fact all hindu rituals are done with same thosand years old yagya.

What is Ashwamedh Yagya?

Though the name has Yagya but it has nothing to do with Vedah but as this process started with a physical yagya so it carries the suffix Yagya. This has more to do with the king practice. In this if king wishes to be emperor then he will choose a horse and send to all kingdoms as his/her messenger. The kingdoms which surrender will not catch the horse. If a king catched horse it meant he/she did not accept the governance and he/she had to fight. The horse was the symbol of the king who sent it.