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Vedas, Vedanta and Sanskrit texts

 

Vedas, Vedanta and Sanskrit texts


Online Resources and Books

The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad (other titles available at this site)

 

The Gayatri Mantra

Some famous Mantras

The Advaita Vedanta Page by Vidyasankar Sundaresan

The Antiquity of the Vedas

To quote the Kanchi Sankaracharya on this topic

Date of the Vedas : Inquiry not Proper from the Chapter "The Vedas", in Hindu Dharma : kamakoti.org:

"The idea that the Vedas are eternal does not fit into the mental outlook of Western Indologists. Their claims to impartiality and to conducting research in a scientific manner notwithstanding, they are not prepared to accord an elevated status to the Hindu texts. Many Hindu research scholars have also found themselves unable to accept the view that the Vedas are eternal.

Modern historians have adopted chiefly two methods to determine the date of the Vedas: the first is based on the astronomical references in the scriptures and the second on the morphology of the language of the same. But have they, using either method, come to any definite conclusion? Each investigator has arrived at a different age. Tilak has assigned the date 6000 B. C to the Vedas. According to some others it is 3000 B. C or 1500 B. C.

There is no difference of opinion among historians about the dates of the scriptures of other religions. They are agreed that the Buddhist Tripitaka was written during the time of Asoka but that the teachings of the Buddha included in it belong to an earlier time. There is similar unanimity of view in that the New Testament is 2000 years old. And all are agreed that the Qur'an was composed 1, 300 years ago. In the case of Vedas alone have historians not arrived at a decisive date.

I mentioned that two methods were adopted in reckoning the age of the Vedas. There are references in these scriptures to the position of certain heavenly bodies. The date of the Vedas, fixed at 6000 B. C. or so, is based on an astronomical conjunction mentioned in them.

But is it right to say that such an astronomical conjunction would not have occurred earlier too? Conjunctions similar to the one on the basis of which the date of 6000 B. C. has been arrived at must have occurred not only before the present creation, but even far far earlier. Which of these is to be taken as the one mentioned in the Vedas? The sages had a vision that could penetrate through the eons. So such calculations will not hold in the case of the Vedas which the great sages brought together with their trans-sensual powers of perception. We find thus that the internal astronomical "evidence" found in the Vedas and made much of by modern researchers does not help in fixing their date.

Further, the Kanchi Acharya is of the opinion that linguistics cannot answer this question authoritatively since it makes assumptions about the time duration for mutations in language to take place. Such assumptions may not be valid in the case of the Vedas. Why ? Special effort is made by those who chant the Vedas to  preserve the purity of the chant and the meter (chandas). This is a subject which is mastered in its own right. Given the care taken to preserve the integrity of the chant, it is reasonable to posit that any changes in the Veda must have taken place over much longer periods of time. The situation is not unlike that of the Qur'an. It is universally accepted that the manner in which the Qur'an is chanted has remained unchanged over the intervening 1300 years.  In the same way, it is a reasonable postulate to claim that changes in the Veda must have occurred over much longer periods of time than in the rest of the Prakrit languages, such as Hindi or Bengali or even Tamil , the other ancient language of India. The conclusion of the Acharya is that linguistics cannot give a proper answer to the question of the antiquity of the Vedas.

Shukla Yajur veda

How to order books on Vedas, Vedanta, Sanskrit and related topics

Arshavidya Ashram Bookstore

The catalog of books available at  Arshavidya    are listed   in the following web page  http://books.arshavidya.org/

If there are books that you need that are not available  in the catalog, pl. do not hesitate to contact me at kaushal42@gmail,com and i will personally conduct the research and have them shipped to you 

 

The law code of manu by Oxford university Press.

In all the criticism that is leveled at Manu today, it is often forgotten that he was the  original Law Giver to the human race, long before Hammurabi of Babylon. It is also forgotten that he devised these laws for a time more than 5000 years ago, when the rest of the world did not have the faintest notion as to what the word meant. Furthermore there are no fatwas if we do not follow the laws of Manu today, which have been superseded by the civil code of the Republic today. While we wallow in self criticism on the role and relevance of Manu to the society of today, let us remind ourselves that foreign scholars are under no compulsion or obligations to  cease research into his work, as is exemplified by  the work of Patrick Olivelle here.

 

  • The translation is based on the first ever critical edition of the text, established by the translator, to be published by OUP New York.
  • The Law Code of Manu is the most authoritative and best-known legal text of ancient India.
  • The introduction argues for the unitary authorship of the text and explores the social, political, and economic context within which it was produced. It also analyses the structure of the Code for the first time.
  • The copious notes explain the text and compare it to other legal codes of ancient India.
  • Four appendices explain the flora and fauna, personal and place names, ritual vocabulary, weights, measures, and currency used in the Code.
  • Patrick Olivelle is the foremost scholar of ancient Indian texts and award-winning translator of the Upanishads in Oxford World's Classics.

From Manusmrti to Madhusmrti,Flagellating a mythical enemy

 

A Vedic reader by Arthur McDonell

Sanskrit and Indo-European

Patanjali's Yoga sutras

Ekam sad vipraha Bahuda vadanti - 1

Ekam sad vipraha Bahuda vadanti - 2

 


Revised: 03/28/05.