Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Vedangas are additional limbs or chapters in the Vedas. There are six Vedangas. The 6 Vedangas are:

Smriti is not meant for chanting. Smriti is meant for memorization.
Vedangas (Veda+ Anga, Limbs of vedas) are part of Smriti literature.

Shiksha- (Phonetics) 
Deals with Phonetics. Connected with correct pronunciation of the words of the Vedas.
Siksha is tongue of Vedas.
Pratisakya suthra is the earliest book available on Shiksha.

Niruktha- (Etymology)
Deals with the origin of meaning of the word.
Yaksha of 5th C. B.C. was the first scholar to deal with etymology.
The book Niruktha was written by Yaksha.

Vyakarana- (Grammar)
Panini is the 1st known grammarian of India. Graduate of Taxila (Taxasila, Takshashila) University. Lived in Gandhara region. Gandhara lies in Northe west region (Pakisthan and Afghanisthan). Its capital was Taxila (Present Rawalpinid and Islamabad).
Taxila University was the most ancient University. (6th Century B.C.- 5th Century A.D.)
Jivaka (5ht Century B.C.), Panini (6th Century B.C.), Charaka (1st Century A.D.) were the students of Taxila University.
Panini wrote Ashtadhyayi, 8 chapters.
Ashtadyayi- 1st book on grammar.

Chandas- (Metrics)
Pingala was the 1st person in ancient Indian to write on Chchandas.

Jyothisha- (Astrology)
Lagoda(6th Century B.C.) was the 1st person to write on Jyothishya.

Kalpa- (Ritual)
Deals with rituals.
Kalpa has four sub parts called Kalpasuthras.
A. Griha Suthras (Smartha suthras)--Ritual
B. Shrautha suthra----------------------Ritual
C. Sulva suthra--------------------------Ritual
D. Dharma Sutra. ----------------------- Legal.

Grihaya Suthras- About domestic rituals.
To be performed by an individual.
Purushardhas- Individual goals. (Dharma, Artha, Kaama, Moksha)
Shodasha karmas- 16 rituals. (16 sacraments)
Shodasha karmas start even before the birth of a child. When the kid is in the womb, kid’s parents should perform some of them. In the form of the Shodasha karmas Brahmins took hold of every person’s life. From conception to cremation (Womb-tomb) life was in the hands of Brahmins. They have designed them in such a way that People need to pay them at every walk of life.
Garbhadaana- Should be performed by a newly wed couple. If a kid is born without this ritual, he is not entitled for salvation.
Pumsavana- Should be done after pregnancy and before the birth . this ritual is done for expecting the birth of male child. Pum= Male.
Simanthonyaya- On 6th or 7th month of the conception. Simanthonyaya is done for the safety of the child in the womb. God is invoked for the child`s safety.
Jataka karma- Astrologer reads the child’s future.
Namakarana- Naming ceremony.
Nishakramana- 1st time the kid is exposed to the sun. kid is shown to the sun.
Food is given to the kid for the first time.
Anna prasana- Child is given solid food for the first time.
Chuda karma- Keshakhandana mahotsavam. Tonsure ceremony.
Karna Bheda- Pearcing the ears.
Vidyaramba- Formal commencement of education.
Upanayana- Most sacred ceremony. Sacred thread ceremony on 8th year. Women and Sudras are not eligible for this Upanayana ceremony. Women and Sudras are Ekajas. They are born only once. Ekajas were looked down in the society.
Upanayana is performed for the new and real birth of a boy.
On this occasion Gayathri manthra (Rg veda III mandala) is chanted. At the age of 8 ceremonial birth is given to child.
Vedaaramba- After Upanayana boy goes to Gurukula. Sudras and women are not allowed into Gurukula.
Keshantha- shaving head.
Samavartana- Home coming ceremony. After the completion of education boy comes back to home from Gurukula
Vivaaha End of Brahmacharya.
Anthyesti- Performed after the death. Last rites. Performed by a son for his parents.

Blog Archive