Tag Archives: atharvaveda

Indo-European expansions and iconography: revisiting the anthropomorphic stelae

Was there an early Indo-European iconography? The anthropomorphic stelae There is no linguistic evidence for the presence of iconic or temple worship among the early Indo-Europeans. However, after their migrations, when they settled in the lands of sedentary peoples, they … Continue reading

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Sneha, snowstorms, the sun and the moon in enigmatic ṛk-s

That the Indo-European homeland was a cold place with snow is evidenced by widespread survival of two hon-homologous words for snow. Recently, a discussion on one of these words, sparked by some linguist, landed on my timeline on Twitter. From … Continue reading

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Agni as the divine commander in the Veda and the Purāṇa

With the Sākamedha-parvan with the oblations to Agni Anīkavat having just passed, we present a brief note on Agni as the general of the deva army. Agni is presented as the commander of the deva-s in the brāhmaṇa literature. For … Continue reading

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Twin Āditya-s, twin Rudra-s

This note originated as an intended appendix to the article on Rudra and the Aśvin-s we published earlier. The first offshoot from that work, which we published separately, explored the links between Rudra, Viṣṇu and the Aśvin-s in the śrauta … Continue reading

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Matters of religion: Varuṇāvasiṣṇavam, Agnāvasiṣṇavam and the vyahṛti-s

Like the clouds lifting after the monsoonal deluge to unveil the short-lived comforts of early autumn, the metaphorical pall over the nation cast by the engineer’s virus was lifting. Somakhya and Lootika were at the former’s parents’ house, relieved that … Continue reading

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Making an illustrated Nakṣatra-sūkta and finding the constellation for a point in the sky

The illustrated Nakṣatra-sūkta Towards the latter phase of the Vedic age, multiple traditions independently composed sūkta-s that invoked the pantheon in association with their home nakṣatra-s as part of the śrauta Nakṣatreṣṭi or related gṛhya homa-s. Of these oldest and … Continue reading

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Some notes on the Brahmayajña brāhmaṇa and Uttama-paṭala of the Atharvaṇ tradition

PDF version  The Brahmayajña brāhmaṇa (1.1.29 of the Gopatha-brāhmaṇa) of the Atharvaveda provides a glimpse of the Vedic saṃhitā canon as known to the brāhmaṇa authors of the AV tradition. The Brahmayajña might be done as part of the basic … Continue reading

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Yajus incantations for the worship of Rudra from the Kāṭhaka ritual manuals

This article is available as a pdf document. The notes from it are appended below. The loss of the northern and northwestern Kṛṣnayajurveda traditions due to the Mohammedan depredations of Northern India (aided an abetted by the predatory Anglospheric regimes) … Continue reading

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RV 10.5

The Ṛgveda is replete with obscure sūkta-s but RV 10.5 might easily take a place in the top tier of those. One might even ask why even attempt to write a commentary on this. We admit we could be plainly … Continue reading

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The Aśvin-s and Rudra

The twin Aśvin-s and Rudra are both Indo-Aryan reflexes of two deity-classes which can be reconstructed as likely being present in the Proto-Indo-European religion. Both are likely to have even deeper roots going back to even earlier religious traditions across … Continue reading

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Matters of religion-3

Lootika seeing Somakhya contemplating something remarked: “That great clash of men is upon us, where, as the śruti says, our flag will be mingled with that of the enemy in close combat.” Somakhya: “It’s almost as if your mind is … Continue reading

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Kaiṭabha, poison and death: meanderings through tradition

For better reading try PDF version The medical Suśruta-saṃhitā, kalpasthāna, chapter 3 contains an unusual mythologem about the origin of poison. It clearly belongs to the Prājāpatya tradition and presents some unusual features. It presented in full below: prajām imām … Continue reading

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Matters of religion: the Vāyavīyaṃ Kaubera-vratam

The bus came to halt at the underground stop. Vrishchika of pretty tresses got off the bus and walked up the stairs to reach the over-bridge. She reached the middle of the bridge and stood there looking out expectantly at … Continue reading

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Notes on the Bhadra-sūkta, a hymn for felicity to the Vedic pantheon

For better type-setting and Devanagari rendering use PDF version. Introduction Several sub-schools of the Taittirīya school of the Kṛṣṇayajurveda possess their own collections of mantra-s distinct from their saṃhitā-s known as the mantra-pāṭha-s. These include mantra-s that are often found … Continue reading

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Making of a modern-day mantra-śāstra pamphlet

Originally, all mantra instructions were oral, keeping with the spirit of the śruti. But over time, starting probably around the Mauryan age, written manuals began to supplement the oral teachings. Thus, through the ages practitioners of the mantra-lore have made … Continue reading

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A note on the pantheon of the Indian Saura tradition

The Indian Saura-mata (or the Hindu sect of the Sun) is an amalgam of two distinct layers [Footnote 1]: 1) The endogenous layer of solar deities going back to the Veda and 2) the neo-morphic layer of Iranic origin which … Continue reading

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Exploring the history of Hindu festivals: the ancient strands of Holākā

Updated version of article published originally at IndiaFacts In Hindu tradition there is a clear demarcation of at least three distinct classes of ritual observances: 1) The most conservative of these are the śrauta rituals that deviate little from their … Continue reading

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Śakadhūma: Possible parallels in a meteorological tradition from India and South America

This is an updated version of our earlier study: published first at IndiaFacts Research by Orlove, Cane and Chiang on the native weather forecasters in mountains of Peru and Bolivia has brought to light an interesting tidbit of traditional knowledge … Continue reading

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The indrajAla-sUktaM and the atharvan military ritual

An atharvan military ritual for kShatriya-s headed to war involves deployment of AV-vulgate 8.8 or its cognate AV-P 16.29. The ritual is specified by the kaushika sUtra 16.9-20 and some details are provided by the atharvan commentators dArila and keshava. … Continue reading

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Anatomy and heavens in the boomorphic universe

The bovine species lay at the center of the existence of the early Indo-Aryan. After all he owed his very success in history to the strength of milk. Hence, rather appropriately payas means both milk and strength in saMskR^ita. Not … Continue reading

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Beetles and men: some glimpses of history through the contemporary lens

The tale of poisoned arrows The bushmen clans generally used to not fight each other because most adult males are armed with arrows that have been smeared with deadly toxins. However, when from the mid-1600s the Dutch started intruding into … Continue reading

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The mAtR^ikA krama

The worship of the mAtR^ikA-s lies at the root of the kaula system. We have earlier discussed the links of the mAtR^ikA worship with the kaumAra system. The presence of female deities, later explicitly termed mAtR^ikA-s or yoginI-s, in the … Continue reading

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