[Advaita-l] vedas - classification
sgadkari2001 at yahoo.com
Fri Mar 17 02:42:55 CST 2006
Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
>Many people are confused about this. The confusion
vanishes if we simply
>stop thinking of the Vedas as a "book" in the modern
sense of the word.
>Whether a given passage is karmakANDa or upAsanAkANDa
or jnAnakANDa has to
>be understood with respect to understanding the
content of the passage. At
>its base, it is very simple, as the classification
refers mainly to the
>thrust of the passage. Does it teach action,either
directly or through
>inference, or does it teach a particular mode of
>pancAgni-vidyA), or does it only teach knowledge
(e.g. ayam AtmA brahma)?
>This mode of classifying the subject matter of the
veda is often independent
>of samhitA, brAhmaNa, AraNyaka distinctions in the
title headings of the
>sections of the veda.
Just to add to this:
It is possible to look at the vedas simply
as a huge collection of vidyA-s. Each vidyA
has a part dealing with jnAna-vijnAna, an
associated set of mantra-s, recommended practices
to make faster progress in learning the vidyA,
plus anecdotes related to each vidyA. This
complete collection is the veda.
At some point, it was found necessary/ useful
to collect mantras associated with various vidyA-s
and create samhitA-s out of them. What we have
today as the four "veda"s, is vyAsa's collection
of mantras into four samhitA-s.
Note: A collection of the anecdotes is the purAna-s.
It is also possible to conceive of a grand shAstra
that collects all vidyA-s, vedic and non-vedic.
An important question that needs to be addressed is:
"what is the fundamental difference between a vedic
vidyA, and a non-vedic vidyA?".
Based on my current understanding, it seems the
most convincing criterion is:
vedic vidyA: is based on concepts, observations that
are available for general experience (vAstu tantra).
non-vedic vidyA: is based on concepts, observations
that are available for experience only based on the
level of sAdhanA (puruSa tantra).
Possibly every non-vedic vidyA can be reformulated
by people of refined intellect into a vidyA that uses
only concepts that are available for general
experience, thereby converting it into a vedic vidyA.
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