hindu scripture

The Ṛgveda (ऋग्वेद)

The oldest scripture of Hinduism, the Ṛgveda is compound of the word Ṛc – a hymn of praise, and veda – knowledge.

All Hindu scripture is divided into two categories. The ‘Shrutī’ literature – that which was ‘heard’, and the ‘Smritī’ literature – that which is remembered. Roughly, these two types of literature correspond to ‘revelation’ (Shrutī) and ‘tradition’ (Smritī).

The core of the ‘Shrutī’ literature is the ‘Veda’. Usually when the word Veda is used, it refers to the entire body of Vedic literature (including the Upaniśads). However, when the name of a specific Veda is used, it generally refers to the samhitā, collection of hymns, that comprise the Veda. Thus the term Ṛgveda usually means the Ṛc Samhitā or the Ṛgveda Samhita. The term ‘four Vedas’ thus are the four samhitās namely, the Ṛc, Sāma, Yajus and the Atharva.

Some of the few existing manuscripts of the Ṛgveda, from the archives of the Bhandarkar Institute of Oriental Research, Pune, including one written on birch bark.

The Ṛgveda comprising songs and hymns praising the Vedic deities is the oldest of the samhitās. It is estimated that the Ṛgveda was composed between 1800 BCE to 1200 BCE, a date of about 1500 BCE being the current consensus.

Though writing is found in India in the form of the Brahmi script from the 3rd Century BCE, the Ṛgveda was probably not written down until the late Gupta period circa 6th Century CE.  It is remarkable that was preserved with unparalleled fidelity for more than two millennia by oral tradition alone.

The Ṛgveda has 1028 hymns (the suktas) arranged in 10 books called mandalas. Many of these books are named after the clan of Brahmins descended from the seer (Ṛśī) who ‘heard’ the hymns.

The suktas of the Ṛgveda mostly comprise praises of exploits and achievements of the Vedic deities. A large Vedic mythology can be inferred from the Ṛgveda but is not explicitly narrated. However, some suktas serve as an indication of future developments in Vedic thought along two different lines, ritualism and philosophical speculation – especially the highly popular and often quoted Nāsadiya Sukta and Hiraṇyagarbha Sukta.

That which makes the tongue speak but cannot be spoken by the tongue
That alone is God, not what people worship

That which makes the mind think but cannot be thought by the mind
That alone is God, not what people worship

That which makes the eye see but cannot be seen by the eye
That alone is God, not what people worship

If you think that you know God, you know very little
All that we can know are ideas and images of God

I do not know God nor can I say that I don’t know God
If you understand the meaning of, I neither know nor don’t know
You understand God

Those who realize that God cannot be known, truly know
Those who claim that they know, know nothing

The ignorant think that God can be grasped by the mind
The wise know it beyond knowledge

When you see that God acts through you at every moment
In every movement of mind or body you attain true freedom

When you realize the truth and cling to nothing in the world
You enter eternal life.

We knew the world would not be the same. A few people laughed, a few people cried. Most people were silent. I remembered the line from the Hindu scripture, the Bhagavad-Gita. Vishnu is trying to persuade the Prince that he should do his duty, and, to impress him, takes on his multi-armed form and says, ‘Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.’ I suppose we all thought that, one way or another.

Alfred Eisenstaedt     Theoretical Physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer     1947


“We knew the world would not be the same. A few people laughed, a few people cried. Most people were silent. I remembered the line from the Hindu scripture, the Bhagavad-Gita; Vishnu is trying to persuade the Prince that he should do his duty, and to impress him, takes on his multi-armed form and says, ‘Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.’ I suppose we all thought that, one way or another.” J. Robert Oppenheimer (who was able to read Sanskrit and translated Sanskrit poetry as a hobby), recalling his thoughts on witnessing the explosion of the first atomic bomb at the Trinity Site, Alamogordo, New Mexico, 1945.

Avatars of Shiva 

Shiva is known by many names in Hindu scriptures. Yajurveda - one of the four Vedas (Hindu philosophical texts) - mentions a god named “Mahadeva” - who is later identified to be the same as Shiva. 

Mahadeva is synonymous with Shiva. As the supreme and first yogi (A yogi is a Hindu ascetic sage who practices Yoga as a form of devotion for the Supreme Being), Shiva is called Mahayogi. 

As the greatest God, he is known as Mahesha. To his three eyes are attributed his names Trinetra, Triambaka, Triaksha and Trinayana (Tri implies three while Netra, Ambaka, Aksha and Nayana imply eye).

Shiva, often depicted as a naked ascetic, is also called Digambara (He who has the sky as his garment). His name Shankara means the Giver of Joy while his name Shambhu means the Embodiment of Joy. 

Shiva is the eternal time or Mahakal. The moon that he carries on his head has given him the symbolic name Vyomkesha or He who is endowed with the sky as his hair. 

Chandrashekhar (or master of the moon) is also a name attributed to this feature. His name Siddheshwar is derived from his nature of a perfect being. 

His trident (or Trishul) has earned him the name Trishuldhari while his being the cosmic tutor has given him the name Dakhshinamurthi. 

His abode is mount Kailash and thus, He is also identified as Kailashpati. Since He is the lord of all creatures, He is called Pashupatinath while as the husband of Uma, He is called Umapati.

By K.Nagori

We knew the world would not be the same. A few people laughed, a few people cried. Most people were silent. I remembered the line from the Hindu scripture, the Bhagavad Gita; Vishnu is trying to persuade the Prince that he should do his duty and, to impress him, takes on his multi-armed form and says, ‘Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.’ I suppose we all thought that, one way or another.
—  Robert Oppenheimercreator of the atomic bomb- on the destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. 
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Rati; goddess of love, lust, and pleasure. The Hindu scriptures stress her beauty and sensuality. They depict her as a maiden who has the power to enchant the god of love. When the god Shiva burnt her husband to ashes, it was Rati, whose beseeching or penance, leads to the promise of Kama’s resurrection.

Basics of Hinduism

- Hinduism is an ancient religion. It is so old that its beginning precedes recorded history. 

- Hindu scriptures (The Vedas) are the world’s most ancient available scriptures.

- Hinduism does not have a human founder. 

- Hinduism is not an organized religion and has no systematic approach to teaching its values.

- The universe undergoes endless cycles of creation, preservation and dissolution. 

- Individuals have the ability to create their own destiny through their thoughts, words and attitudes.

- The soul reincarnates, and that the individual soul is neither created nor destroyed. It has always been there and it always will be

- A single supreme being

- All life is sacred, to be loved and revered

- No single religion teaches the only exclusive way to salvation above all others, but that all genuine paths are facets of God’s Light, deserving tolerance and understanding.

- The truth is eternal and the goal is to pursue knowledge and understanding of the Truth. Hindus believe that Brahman is Truth and Reality. 

- Everyone should strive to achieve dharma, as in righteousness, and being morally good and ethical

Affirmation
I know that if I offer my friendship to all, I shall begin to feel the cosmic love, which is God. Human friendship is the echo of God’s friendship. To give hatred for hatred is easy, but to give love for hatred is far more difficult and far greater. Therefore I will consume hatred in the roaring conflagration of my spreading love.

East And West - The Lessons We Are Here On Earth To Learn

The Hindu scriptures teach that man is attracted to this particular earth to learn, more completely in each successive life, the infinite ways in which the Spirit may be expressed through, and dominant over, material conditions. East and West are learning this great truth in different ways, and should gladly share with each other their discoveries. Beyond all doubt it is pleasing to the Lord when His earth-children struggle to attain a world civilization free from poverty, disease, and soul ignorance. Man’s forgetfulness of his divine resources (the result of his misuse of free will) is the root cause of all other forms of suffering.

The ills attributed to an anthropomorphic abstraction called “society” may be laid more realistically at the door of Everyman. Utopia must spring in the private bosom before it can flower in civic virtue, inner reforms leading naturally to outer ones. A man who has reformed himself will reform thousands.

*The artwork depicts Krishna and Christ, avatars of East and West, before the sacred fire of Kriya Yoga, working together with Mahavatar Babaji, to bring about spiritual regeneration for mankind in this age. - Artist unknown.

-Paramahansa Yogananda, A World In Transition, p 250; Affirmation, Metaphysical Meditations, p 79.

Name Meanings in Star wars.

Ezra- Helpful, Strong. Hebrew name and the name of a minor prophet in the Bible.

Hera- Radiant. Name of the wife of Zeus. Greek.

Caleb- Faithful. Brave. Hebrew. Name of a person in the book of Joshua in the Bible.

Kanan- Forest. Indian Name.

Ashoka- The name of an indian Emperor and a Hindu scripture. Cannot find the meaning anywhere.

Luke- Light. Name of a book of the bible and the author of that book. 

Leia-Weary. Hebrew.

Sabine- Sabine Woman. French name.

Ben/Benjamin- Son of my Right hand. Hebrew. Biblical.

Anakin- Warrior. American name.

Padme- Closest I could get was Padma which means: Lotus Blossom and is a Hindi name.

Han- Closest I could get was Hans: God is Gracious. Scandinavian.

Lando- Famous Land. Spanish.

Zeb- Short form of Zebadiah: Endowed by God. Hebrew. A name of several people in the Bible.

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We knew the world would not be the same. A few people laughed, a few people cried. Most people were silent. I remembered the line from the Hindu scripture, the Bhagavad-Gita. Vishnu is trying to persuade the Prince that he should do his duty, and, to impress him, takes on his multi-armed form and says, ‘Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.’ I suppose we all thought that, one way or another.” – J. Robert Oppenheimer