19 September 2014

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Riddles in Hinduism Shastras on the origin of the Vedas Riddle Three

Riddles in Hinduism Shastras on the origin of the Vedas Riddle Three


The search for the origin of the Vedas may well begin with the Vedas themselves.
The Rig-Veda propounds a theory of the origin of the Vedas.
It is set out in the famous Purusha Sukta.
According to it, there was a mystic sacrifice of the Purusha a mythical being and it is out of this sacrifice that the three Vedas namely.
Rig, Sama, Yajus came into being.

The Sama-Veda and Yajur-Veda have nothing to say about the origin of the Vedas.

The only other Veda that refers to this question is the Atharva-Veda. It has many explanations regarding the origin of the Vedas. One explanation

[Atharva-Veda XIX 54. 3. Quoted in Muir S. 1. III. p. 4. ]
Reads as follows:
“From Time the Rig verses sprang; the Yajus sprang from Time.  "
There are also two other views propounded in the Atharva-Veda on this subject.

The first of these is not very intelligent and may be given in its own language which runs as follows:
[Atharva-Veda X 7.14 quoted in Muir S. 1. III. P . . . 1.]
“Declare who that Skamba (supporting principle) is in whom the primeval rishis, the rick, saman, and yajush, the earth and the one rishi, are sustained

“Declare who is that Skamba from whom they cut off the rick verses, from whom they scrapped off the  yajush, of whom the saman verses are the hairs and the verses of Atharvan and Angiras the mouth. "

Obviously  this statement  is  a  challenge  to someone who had proclaimed  that  the  Rig,  Sama and Yajur Veda were born out of a Skamba.

The second explanation given in the Atharva-Veda is that the Vedas sprang from Indra. [3 Muir S. T. III. p. 4.]

This is all that the Vedas have to say about their own origin. Next in order of the Vedas come the Brahmanas.

We  must  therefore  inquire  into  what  they  have  to  say  on  this  subject.

The  only Brahmanas  which  attempt  to  explain  the  origin of  the  Vedas are  the  Satapatha  Brahmana,  the Taitteriya Brahmana. Aitereya Brahmana and Kaushitaki Brahmana.

The Satapatha Brahmana has a variety of e xplanations. One attributes the origin of the Vedas to Prajapati. [Page: 21 1 Muir Sanskrit Texts, III. p. 5.]

According to it:
"  Prajapati,  was  formerly  this  universe  (i.e.,  the  sole  existence)  one  only.  He desired, ‘may I become, may I be propagated '. He toiled in devotion, he performed austerity.

“From him, when he had so toiled and performed austerity, three worlds were created—earth, air and sky.

He infused warmth into these three worlds.
From them, thus heated, three lights were produced, —
Agni (fire), this which purifies i.e., Pavana, or Vayu, (the Wind), and Surya (the Sun).

He infused heat into these three lights.
From them so heated the three Vedas were produced, —
The Rig-Veda from Agni (fire), the Yajur-Veda from VA yu (Wind) and
The Sama-Veda from Surya (the Sun).

He infused warmth into these three Vedas.
From them so heated three luminous essences were produced, b huh,
From the Rig-Veda, b halvah from the Yajur-Veda, and svar from the Sama-Veda.

Hence,  with  the  Rig-Veda,  the  office  of  the  adhvaryu;  with  the  Sama-Veda,  the duty of the udgatri; while the function of the brahman arose through the luminous essence of the triple science (i.e., the three Vedas combined).'"
The Satapatha Brahmana gives another variant [2 Ibid, p.  8]of  this  explanation  of  the  origin  of the  Veda  from  Prajapati.

The explanation is that Prajapati created the Vedas from waters.
Says the Satapatha Brahmana:
"This male, Prajapati, desired, 'May I multiply, May I be propagated '.
He toiled in devotion; he practised austere-fervour.
Having done so he first of all created sacred knowledge, the triple Vedic science. This became a basis for him. Wherefore men say, ' sacred knowledge is the basis of this universe '.
Hence after studying the Veda a man has a standing ground; for sacred knowledge is his foundation.
Resting on this basis he (Prajapati) practised austere-fervour.
He created the waters from Vach (speech) as their world.
Vach was his; she was created.
As she ervaded (apnot) waters were called 'apah'.
As she covered (avrinot) all, water was called 'Var'.
He desired, 'May I be propagated from these waters ‘.
Along with this triple Vedic science he entered the waters.
Thence sprang an egg.
He gave it an impulse; and said 'let there be, let there be, let there be again ‘.
Hence was first created sacred knowledge, the triple Vedic science.
Wherefore men say, 'Sacred knowledge is the first-born thing' in this universe. Moreover, it was sacred knowledge which was created from that male in front, wherefore it was created as his mouth.
Hence they say of a man learned in the Veda, 'he is like Agni; for the sacred knowledge is Agni's mouth '. "

There is a third explanation [Page: 23    “I settle thee in the ocean as they seat.”
“Mind is the ocean.
From the mind-ocean with speech for a shovel the Gods dug out the triple Vedic science.
Hence this verse has been uttered; 'May the brilliant deity today know where they placed that offering which the Gods dug out with sharp shovels.
Mind is the ocean; speech is the sharp shovel; the triple Vedic Science is the offering.
In reference to this the verse has been uttered. He settles it in Mind."

The Taitteriya - Brahmana has three explanations to offer.
It speaks of the Vedas as being derived from Prajapati.
It  also says  Prajapati  created  king  Soma  and  after  him  the  three.
Vedas were created. [Ibid. p. 8.]
This Brahmana has another explanation [Ibid. p. 10.] quite unconnected with Prajapati.

According to it: "Vach (speech) is an imperishable thing, and the first-born of the ceremonial, the mother of the Vedas, and the centre-point of immortality.

Delighting in us, she came to the sacrifice.
May the protecting goddess be ready to listen to my invocation, she whom the wise rishis, the composers of hymns, the Gods sought by austere-fervour, and by laborious devotion.
“To crown all this the Taitteriya Brahmana offers a third explanation.
It says that the Vedas came from the beard of Prajapati. [Lbid. p. 10.]

The  Upanishads  have  also  attempted  to  explain  the  origin  of  the  Vedas.
The explanation offered by the Chhandogya Upanishad is the same [1 lbid. p. 5.] as that given by the Satapatha Brahmana—namely that the Rig-Veda originated from Agni, Yajus from Vayu and Sam from the Sun.

The Brahad Aranyaka Upanishad has two explanations to offer.
In one place, it says: [2 Muir Vol. 1. p. 8.]

"As from a fire made of moist wood, various modifications of smoke proceed, so is the breathing of  this  great  Being  the  Rig-Veda,  the  Yajur-Veda,  the  Sama-Veda,  the  Atharvangirases,  the Itihasas,  Puranas, science,  the  Upanishads,  verses  (slokas),  aphorisms,  comments  of  different kinds—all these are his breathings. "

In another place, it says [3 Ibid. p. 9.] “Prajapati (identified with Death or the Devourer) is said to have produced Vach (speech), and through her, together with soul, to have created all things, including the Vedas."

"By that speech and that soul he created all things whatsoever, rick, yajush, and saman texts, metres, sacrifices, creatures and animals.”

"The three Vedas are (identifiable with) these three things (speech, mind and breath).

Speech is the Rig-Veda, mind the Yajur-Veda and breath the Sama-Veda."

Coming  to  the  Smritis,  there  are  two  theories  as  to  the  origin  of  the  Vedas  to  be  found  in  the Manu Smriti.

In one place, [Ibid. p. 6.] it is said that the Vedas were created by Brahma.

"He  (Brahma)  in  the  beginning  fashioned  from  the  words  of  the  Veda  the  several  names, functions,  and separate  conditions  of  all  (creatures).

That Lord also created the subtle host of active and living deities, and of Sadhyas, and eternal sacrifice.

And in order to the performance of sacrifice,  he  drew  forth  from  Agni,  from  Vayu  and  from  Surya,  the  triple  eternal  Veda, distinguished as Rick, Yajush and Saman."

In another place [2 Ibid. p. 7.] he seems to accept the story of Prajapati being the originator of the Vedas as would be evident from the following:

"Prajapati also milked out of the three Vedas the letters, 'a ', ' u ', and "m ' together with the words 'b huh ‘,  ' b huvah ‘and ‘svar  '.

The same supreme  Prajapati  also milked  from  each  of  the  three Vedas one of the three portions of the text called Savitri (or gayatri), beginning with the word tat... .

The three great imperishable particles (bhuh,bhuvah, svar) preceded by om, and the gayatri of three lines, are to be regarded as he mouth of Brahma."

It  is  also  interesting  to note  what  the  Puranas  have  to say  about  the origin of  the  Vedas.

The Vishnu Purana [1 Muir Vol. 1. p. 11] says:
"  From  his  eastern  mouth  Brahma  formed  the  gayatra,  the  rick  verses,  the  trivrit,  the  soma-rathantara,  and  of  sacrifices,  the  agnishtoma.  From  his southern mouth  he  created  the  yajush verses,  the  trishtubh metre,
the  panchadasa-stoma,  the  vrihat-saman  and  the  ukthya.

From his western mouth he formed the saman verses, the jagatimetre,
the saptadasa-stoma, the vairupa, and the atiratra.

From his northern mouth he framed the ekavinsa, the atharvan, the aptoryaman,
with the anushtubh and biraj metres. "

The Bhagvat Purana [Ibid. p. II.] says:

"Once  the  Vedas  sprang  from  the  four-faced  creator,  as  he  was  meditating  '  how  shall  I create the aggregate worlds as before?. .

He formed from his eastern and other mouths the Vedas called rick, yajush, saman, and atharvan, together with praise, sacrifice, hymns and expiation. " 

  " Entering between her eyes. From her there was then produced a quadruple being in the form of  a  Male,  lustrous  as  Brahma,  undefined,  eternal,  undecaying,  devoid  of  bodily  senses  or qualities,  distinguished  by  the  attribute  of  brilliancy,  pure  as  the  rays of  the  moon,  radiant,  and embodied in letters.

The God fashioned the Rig-Veda, with the Yajush from his eyes, the Sama-Veda from the tip of his tongue, and the Atharvan from his head.

These Vedas, as soon as they are  born,  find a  body,  (kshetra).
Hence  they  obtain  their  character of  Vedas,  because  they  find
(vindanti) that abode.

These Vedas then create the pre-existent eternal Brahma (sacred science), a Male of celestial form, with their own mind-born qualities. "

It  also  accepts  Prajapati  as  the  origin.
It  says  that  when  the  Supreme  being  was  intent  on creating the Universe, Hiranyagarbha, or Prajapati, issued from his mouth the sound ' Om ', and was desired to divide himself—a process which he was in great doubt how he should effect— the Harivamsa proceeds: [Ib id. p. 14]
"  While  he  was  thus  reflecting,  the sound  '  om  '  issued  from him,  and  resounded  through  the earth,  air  and sky.
While  the  God of  Gods  was again  and  again  repeating  this,  the  essence of mind,  the  vashatkara  proceeded  from  his  heart.
Next,  the  sacred  and  transcendent  vyahritis, (bhuh, bhuvah, svar), formed of the great smriti, in the form of sound, were produced from earth, air, and sky.

Then appeared the goddess, the most excellent of meters, with twenty-four syllables (the  gayatri).

Reflecting  on  the  divine  text  (beginning  with)  'tat',  the  Lord  formed  the  Savitri.
He then produced all the Vedas, the Rick, Saman, Atharvan, and Yajush, with their prayers and rites."

Here we have eleven different explanations regarding the origin of the Vedas—

(1) as originating from the mystical sacrifice of Purusha

(2) as resting on Skambha

(3) as cut or scraped off from him, as being his hair and his mouth

(4) as springing from Indra

(5) as produced from Time

(6) as produced from Agni, Va yu and Surya

(7) as springing from Prajapati, and the Waters

(8) as being the breath of Brahma

(9) as being dug by the Gods out of mind-ocean

(10) as being the hair of Prajapati's beard

(11) as being the offspring of Vach.

This  bewildering multiplicity  of  answers  to a simple question is  a  riddle.
The  writers  who  have come forward to furnish these answers are all Brahmins. They belong to the same Vaidik school of  thought.

They  alone were  the  guardians  of  the  ancient  religious  lore.

Why  should  they  have  given such incoherent and chaotic answers to a very simple question?

Suggested Reading –

Part 1 Riddles in Hinduism the Difficulty of Knowing Why One is a Hindu

Part 2 Riddles in Hinduism the origin of the Vedas Riddle

Source –
Riddles in Hinduism - Bharat Ratna Dr. Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar

Reality views by sm –

Friday, September 19, 2014

Tags - Riddles in Hinduism Shastras on the origin of the Vedas


rudraprayaga September 22, 2014  

Whatever the explanations may be, Vedas are a fact and there are millions,no zillions of believers and followers for them even if one or two criticize them.

And the other religions are also interpretted according to fancies of the person despite their sacredness.