collection of hauma hamiddha's scattered posts

Posts tagged ‘vedic’

The pravargya ritual

The pravargya is an exalted vedic sacrifice performed by an Arya to
the ashvins and offers a glimpse of the fusion of the two ancient
ritual streams of the ancient Aryan past. One component of it is the
ancient gharma rite to the Ashvins probably instituted by the bhR^igus
under the great atharvan chyavAna. ChyavAna was revived from
decrepitude and disease by the ashvins and went on to win sukanya the
daughter of shAryAti and accordingly in their honor offered the great
sacrifice of milk. Then the bhArgava dadhichi, gained the madhuvidyas
from the ashvins who had fixed on him the head of the horse, hence he
worshipped them as the gods of medicine. These ancient memories
resulted in the atharvans instituting a sacrificial pouring for the
Ashvins with the mantra AV 7.73 (Shaunaka SaMhita of AV,
samiddhoagnir…). Simultaneously in the Vedic stream of the bhAratas,
the school of the prAjapatya vAishvAmitras instituted a rite to
commemorate the twelve month year also known as prajapati, with a
twelve day pouring two the deities: savitA, agni, mAtarishvAn, the
Adityas, the nakshatras, the R^ita, dhAtA, bR^ihaspati, mitra, varuNa,
indra and soma. The end of the year was marked symbolically by the
beheading of prajapati by rudra. The restoration of his head in the
new year was through the surgery of the ashvins.

The myth of the cephalic surgery on prajapati and dadhichi served as
the fusion point of these rites during the early settlement of the
bhAratas in the sub-continent. This resulted in the pravargya rite in
which marks the restoration of the head of yagna or the prajapati also
called makha’s head in the brAhmaNa literature. Thus the taittiriya
AraNyaka states:
te devA ashvinAvabruvan.h | bhishhajau vai staH | idaM yagnasya shiraH
prati dhattameti |…
The head in the pravargya rite is symbolically denoted by a parvargya
pot. Thus is the rite performed:
The adhvaryu first set up sacrficial fire and offers ghee to savitA.
Then he mixes clay and makes the pravargya pot with an hour glass like
shape with a spout in the top half from three pieces of clay. He also
makes the other chamasas and the ladles for the rite with the
remaining clay. They are sun dried and then the adhvaryu fumigates
them in a fire fueled by horse dung. Then they are heated in the fire
in the sacrificial pit taken out and cooled by the pouring of goat’s
milk. On the day of the rite the adhvaryu uses his forceps to hold the
pravargya pot over the AhAvaniya fire and melts ghee in it and the
prastotA priest sings the pravargya sAmans during this process. The
pot is then place on a raised altar on a silver disk. Ghee is poured
again into it and its heated by the adhvaryu and then surrounded by
samids and covered with a gold lid and a fire lit. It is fanned with 3
fans till the pot becomes redhot and all except the yajamAna’s wife
look at it chanting yajushes. Finally the other participants leave and
the pratiprastAtA priest and yajmAna’s wife not looking at the pot
chant the fertility yajushes to tvashTa. Then a goat and a cow are
milked and the milk is poured into the pravargya pot. It is then held
by tongs and taken to the AhAvaniya fire and the gharma offering to
the ashvins is made. An indra pouring with the formula “svAhendrAya
svAhendrA vaD.h” is made and the milk is made to overflow from the pot
into the fire. The pourings to pUshaN and rudra are made. Then after
performing the agnihotra and worshiping the prANa as indra and agni
with the formula “prANa evainaM indratamegnau juhoti” the yajamAna,
his wife and priests eat the congealed milk of the gharma with honey.
The adhvaryu then disposes the sacrificial implements used in the
rite: the forceps, the tripod, the fans, two fire pokers in the east
by arranging them in the shape of a man. The prastotA priest sings the
rakshoha sAmans during the process. Then singing the shukra samans,
the yajamAna, his wife and the priests dispose the pravargya pot on
the east on the west sides of the uttaravedi platform. If he desires
to slay his foes he lays a death-dealing charm invoking
agni-vaishvAnara and disposes it on the branch of an audumbara fig
tree. He may also dispose it near a termite heap with darbha grass for
successful farming.

Also finally the soma while not directly offered in the Taittiriya
AraNyaka form of the rite, it was possibly originally present as in
the soma offering of the bhR^igus to the ashvins. A relic of this is
seen in the pavamAna sAmans sung in course of the rite.

Now the issue is that the pravargya pot is a very distinctive
structure that necessarily must appear in the archaeological record.
Especially given the gold/silver base and lid of the pot finding such
structures may be possible. I would like to hear from list members
regarding any pottery that may fit into the parvargya apparatus and
their possible dates and associations. Is there any such material from
Kalibangan for example? Sankalia mentions some pot associated with the
Malwa culture would anyone have details on it?

Interested readers may also consult: J Houben, J Gonda and J
Buitenen’s works on parvargya. Houben’s is a good brief summary with
English translation. Buitenen’s interpretations of the rite are in my
humble opinion completely flawed. Gonda talks of psychic effects of
soma, and ghee drinking in the rite…. But i doubt these were really
relevant.

“vedic” worldview?

> A major problem with those who criticize these sciences
> is a LACK of understanding of the “Vedic Worldview”.
>
> Vedic Worldwview if Brief: There is “something” within us
> that gets projected as our physical body, the same “something”
> projects itself as the physical universe. Now the real cause
> of any event is not in the physical plane but in that
> “something”. The past is remembered within this “something” and
> we call this memory of past within this “something” as
> accumulated karma.

Dear Sir,
with all due respects I have to take very strong objection to this.
This in no way can be called a Vedic world view. I strongly object to
the word Vedic being appended to every other thing in order to give it
a false sense of sanctity. The concepts that you mention are merely
one of the philosophical opinions that are prevalent in classical
Indian philosophies. While the Vedas proper have different
philosophical ideas, they do not subscribe to the notion of karma and
the atman as a imagined by some later Indian philosophies. These ideas
themselves are Indo-European in origin (Though some lateral middle
Eastern Influence cannot be ruled out) but they are essentially
para-Vedic. Only very late in Indian history (Post-bhArata war) did
they have some interaction with the vedic stream. advaita, panchratra
etc are not vedic in sense of the word. They only twist some vedic
ideas to give legitimacy to themselves.

atman is related to the Germanic word Atem and goes back to a PIE word
that probably meant life supporting breath. The vedic AtmA was closer
to this and not to that seen in the later texts. So your concept
should be correctly termed the medieval Hindu world view and not the
vedic world view.

Similarly vedic astrology, vedic mathematics, vedic management and
vedic numerology are phantoms of the modern Hindu mind.

How would you explain the term in Cha_ndogya Upanis.ad in relation to
> soma: a_tma_ yajn~asya? Ain’t this concept of a_tman Vedic?

Well if you interpret the way the later day advaitins and other
vedantins did then you may think that the chAndogya was refering to an
AtmA in the sense of the soul. However, if we carefully look at in the
vedic context we can see that even in a text like the chAndogya of
the late kuru realm the AtmA concept meant something totally different
from the vedantic interpretations of later days (I never said AtmA
concept is not vedic, it not just vedic it is even PIE).

To illustrate this point we consider the famous tale of the dialog
between the kekaya king and the 5 brAhmaNas- prAchInashAla,
satyayagnya, indradyumna, jana and buDila (5.11-16). The vaishvAnara
AtmA is identified in the entire body with its brain, eyes,
respiration, trunk and excretory functions. Thus the AtmA is metabolic
process that permeates the entire body rather than being a something
whose projection is the body.

ta iha vyAgro vA sigaMho va vR^iko vA varAho vA vA kITo vA pata~ngo vA
dagaMsho vA mashako vA yadyadbhavanti tadAbhavanti ||
sa ya eShoNimaitadAtmyamidagaM sarvaM tatsatyagaM sa AtmA tatvamasi
shvetaketo iti || ChU6.9.3/4

Here again the AtmA is described as the common principle of life
existing in diverse forms like the tiger, lion, wolf, boar, beetle,
firefly, gnat and mosquito that said to be able to repeatedly
propogate themselves.

> Bra_hman.a-s are karmaka_n.d.a-s in the Vedic tradition. So how can
> it be said that karman is not Vedic?

The brAhmaNa protion should definitely be treated with greater
circumspection than the saMhita as they are more prone to insertions
and conflation of various intellectual streams.

Shri Reddy,
your mails have been confusing, nevertheless what you ‘vaidika’
friend writes is largely incorrect. I have said this many times on
this list but am just incited to state it against once more:
Unfortunately, despite all their education a large number of Indians
do not understand the foundations of linguistics. The unity of IE
languages and the inference of PIE are not going to go away how much
ever you may whine or bitch. The IE languages are more related to each
other than to any other languages- period. If you are not willing to
function within this framework your theories and models are erroneous
and need not be taken seriously for historical reconstruction.

A corollary to this is that traditional methods of understanding the
vedas have suddenly become inadequate as they do not take into account
the powerful methodology of comparative IE linguistics and mythology.
Through IE lingusitics and mythology we understand the vedas a greater
depth than it was ever traditionally possible both in the historical
and the religious sense. So if you all are missing out IE issues then
you are the losers as you not understanding your heritage correctly.

The undiscerning fellow will insist that the sun revolves around the
Earth and say that he see ‘proof’ for it. If you want to be in that
state fine, there is no point having a dialog with such souls.

btw the mantra that your fired quotes na karmaNA na prajayA…
is not a real vedic mantra. It is a late creation superimposed
erroneously into the upanishadic texts by those who never grasped the
spirit of the vedas.

Ask you friend why the taittiriya U says: prajAtiramR^itaM AnandaM
ityupaste

> It is true that one can arrive at a better understanding of
> the “language of” vedas using IE methodology and comparative
> linguistics. One can also understand the authors, their culture or
> the kings who sponsored them and their kingdoms. But to say that

Bhadraiah what is the difference between the above and below?

> these methodologies can be used to understand vedas themselves is a
> bogus claim. No effort has been made in this direction, and no
> results can be claimed.

I am sure you are meaning something subtle but I do not understand it.

But if by understanding the veda you mean their religious philosophy I
think the comparative information does help us a lot. Many of my
family members and myself perform rites the same way Hindus have been
doing them for hundreds if not thousands of years. There is no change
here but the reasons why we still do these rites and the significance
is only reinforced by the new knowledge. To give you an example the
term ojas represents a concept that needs to be ‘sensed’ to understand
some philosophical issues. Comparative studies show us the link with
the words like augos in Latin and aukhutai of the Shaka that helps us
to understand better the sense of this word in its original
application.

> Apologies for my sweeping statement, and my respects to all the
> serious scholars. Your examples prove that vedic type rituals
> existed in other parts of the world. (Is aukhutai related to Ahuti?)

Well, apologies for a little typo: aukhatai, Avestic Aogah, Sansk.
ojas, Latin augus, Greek Auxein, english wax are all homologs.
Comparative analysis suggests that the word meant not just strength
but a in sense fertility as expressed well in greek auxein or wax. So
the presence of these cognates helps to sense the meaning is say a
vedic mantra like:

mahAnindro ya ojasA parjanyo vR^iShTimAniva of vatsa kaNva | stomair
vatsasya vAvR^idhe ||

This tells me how given the fact that parjanya/vR^iShTi and the verb
vAvR^idhe are used I must understand the term ojasa as in all
likelihood the great kANva had meant it. The raw might of indra is
combined with his ‘fertilizing’ effect as the showering parjanya and
indra expands his might pleased by the sacrificial pouring of vatsa.
The IE comparative analysis helps me in my religious matters of
appreciating the many faceted implication of ojasa as represented by
the english word wax/Gk Auxein, latin augus.

Paralatai, Aukhatai, Traspies and Katiaroi are the castes of the
Scythians. Aukhatai as the warrior caste preserves the military aspect
of the meaning of ojas.

As an aside Paralatai is a cognate of paradAta of the Avesta and may
sort of be an analog of purohita and prefaectus

> algorithmic nature of the ritual can not be minimalized as some form
> of ‘worship of fire’ or treating indra as cloud. Message-board
> hardened IE scholars should collide headon with the subject or get
> out, instead of insulting native vedic scholars just because the
> latter are not so sophisticated in their objections.

I am neither a message-board hardened IE scholar nor a vedic scholar-
my profession lies is an entirely different domain. As brAhmaNa I have
some familiarity with 3 saMhitas suffient to take me through basic
sacrificial rituals I need to conduct over my life. Additionally have
read throught the texts for a few other saMhitas, I have never made
claims of any scholarship native or IE.

I completely agree with you that indra is much more than a cloud and
even much more than a war god or an atmospheric shot, and worship of
agni much more than fire worship. But all this is for those amidst us
who are practicing Hindus. Most indologists are not practicing Hindus
but we need not reject their findings wholescale due to that. We take
what is relevant for our purpose and leave them alone as long as they
are not trying to destroy our religion. Our rituals are largely an
internal matter- so if the Indologist give us some insight but does
not really understand other aspects of the ritual- so be it.

To cite an analogy: The Moslems have harmed Hindus and their religion
in the worst ways. Because of this should stop eating Zilebia,
Jahangiri, Roti, some paneer dishes etc? At least I am not prepared to
do so.

History of Saiva Agamas

>Unfortunately, however no sacred texts of any pre-Aagamic Saiva sect have =
been preserved.
> Possibly none were written during this early period. It is not unlikely t=
hat when Saivism developed into a
>popular movement it relied at first on the Vedas and related literature al=
ong with developing epic Puranic traditions as
>sounding boards for their sectarian views.

This is really a weird statement. At face value it is plainly wrong. I agre=
e that shaivism, just as bhagavatism is actually a
very ancient religous stream of the Indo-Aryans. Both shaivism and bhagavat=
ism was probably affiliated with certain vedic
principles because they originated in the circum-vedic environment, however=
, they did undergo considerable early
development of their own. **There was an extensive pre-Agamic literature in=
sanskrit unlike suggested above.** The
clearest evidence for this come from the two texts: the shvetAshvatara upan=
iShat and the atharvashiras.

While the SU sticks to the classical vedantic pattern and has emerged out o=
f the core vedic paradigm, but we see the
identification of the brahman with rudra is beginning to occur. See mantras=
1.10 and 4.12:
4.12. He, the generator and supporter of the devas, *rudra*, the maharShi, =
the lord of all, who saw Hiranyagarbha being
born, may he endow us with good thoughts.

The atharvashiras goes beyond:

rudraM shAshvataM vai purANaM iShaM urjaM tapasA niyachchhata | vrataM eta=
t pAshupataM |
agniriti bhasma vAyuriti bhasma jalamiti bhasma sthalamiti bhasma vyometi b=
hasma sarvaM ha vA idaM bhasma mana
etAni chakshuMshhi bhasmAni | agnirityAdinA bhasma gR^ihItvA vimR^ijyA~NgA=
ni saMspR^ishet tasmAd
vratametat pAshupataM pashupAshavimokshAya |

The core of the pAshupata rite is layed out and rudra is clearly the brahma=
n one attains after freedom from the
pashupAsha. The tatvas are also identified with bhasma, the essential core =
of them them that is rudra.

So we may conclude that the pAshupata rite and the core of shaiva thought d=
eveloped coevally with the traditional vedic
religions and borrowed from it. In the late vedic period there were at least 4 clear texts (in the order of closeness to the vedic throught they are): 1) shvetAshvatara 2)atharvashiras 3)atharvashikha=
4) kAlAgnirudra. So these *are* the
pre-Agamic texts of shaivism. We very much have them in the sanskrit tradit=
ion. Interestingly these texts are paralleled
by the bhagavatic texts: nArAyaNa sUktaM, a late insert into the yajur corp=
us and nArAyaNopaniShat. This suggests that actually bhAgavatism and shaivism imitated each other in their evolution.

>contributed to the development of a corpus of sacred Saiva literature – th=
e Saiva Aagamas – that considered itself to be
>independent of authority of the Vedas and had nothing to do with the epics=
or puranas.

Untrue. Interestingly, recent studies clearly suggest a link between the sh=
aivas and the vedic world. In any case they
were firmly within the itihasa purANa genre of literature, unlike as sugges=
ted above. Most ironically, the kApAlikas, who
are considered by some as the epitome of vAmAchara, were actually soma sacr=
ificers. It appears that the kApAlika
doctrine itself may have arisen as a tantric caricature of the vedic soma s=
acrifice.

Mantras, concept of bhArata etc

Mr Chandran made some generally important observations
regarding the role of mantra as an assumed devotional
corpus.

This holds true if one looks at the mantras in the
vedic saMhitas themselves. A comparison with the
yashts of the Avesta and for that matter even the
underlying spirit of the gathas the very same
sentiment of devotional poetry to the Indo-Iranian
deities is seen. This is also seen in other fragments
of Indo-European culture that survive like the
Homerical hymns in Greek. The traditions of practice
associated with the Avesta and the Vedas are similar
in that they command immense respect in cultures that
are intellectual and/or genetic descendents of the
original producers *eventhough the popular religions
of these cultures may have diverged immensely*. When
one looks at the later layers of the brAhmaNa
literature one can see that the various strands of
popular religion are already diverging way away from
the saMhita religion. This is the main problem with
all Western mainstream Models of the Aryan issue which
place the Vedas in Indian after 1700BC. Where does all
this divergence come from? (I beseech the interested
list members to pursue this line of thought and see
what it tells them. I do not want to say anything
about AIT due the general allergy for it on the list).
Once one views the Vedic saMhitas as *INDO-EUROPEAN*
religio-philosophical poetry with all its basic
directions then one can see that there were really
only a narrow set meanings intended for each mantra.
This is *Not* to say that the entire corpus did not
encompass diversity. We have the purusha sUktaM and
the nAsadiya sUktam sitting next to each other in the
same maNDala!!!

However the later interpretation starting from the
late brAhmaNa period have completely missed the
original meanings [So there is no sense in the
bickerings of a guy like LS on this matter- just some
vague statements having missed some original point].
There have been some tracts of brilliance on part of
later commentators , I think skandasvAmin was one
such, but misunderstanding of the saMhitas loomed
large. One example of this is the pauranic veda homas.
These lists like in the agni purANa give a list of
vedic mantra from all 4 that are used for various
purposes. Like for example pratar-agniM partar
mitravaruNa… (RVmandala7) for getting a wife. Now
there is connection between the Mantra and its use. So
there is no surprise that Staal or Indian applicants
make the statements they have made.

All this said the entity called India of today and its
precursor greater India that covered most of SE-Asia
exist because of the progeny cultures of the Vedic
peoples. So the individual sub-cultures of the India
really mean less to the unified structure called
Jambudvipa. It goes to the credit of the brAhmaNas
(the simple objective truth, not because I happen to
be one) that they figured out a relatively
non-destructive way imposing the unifying vedic
culture by non-destructively recycling and preserving
local traditions. The survival of this system cannot
be attributed to the brAhmaNas as much as to the
vaishyas and the shudras. Thus even though the brahMin
supported by kshatriya/vaishya patrons may have played
a significant role in the formalization of the
extended daughter culture of Vedic#, its acceptance by
all inhabitants of Jambudvipa, suggests that it is the
main stay of a common Indic culture and religious
stream that goes under name neomorphic name Hindu.
This point of course is devastating to people with
socialist, Monotheist and other kookish agendas and
will not be seen by them.

#by Vedic I follow more extended definition: Indic
Indo-Europeans not talageri’s definition that is
probably right sensu strictu.

> Also why is avesta only associated with gAthas, are there no Rks or
> equivalent? How many gAthas are in veda? Is it that Rks are
universal
> and gAthas are local traditions? Or did we lose gAthas just as
avesta
> may have lost Rks?

The term gatha does definitely go back to the common Indo-Iranian
period. While they were Pan-Indo-Iranian poetic structures to start
with, their development was particularly common in the Iranian-kANva
locus. While not directly called that, gAthas do survive in the
Indo-Aryan tradition while being remodelled in the later vedic period.
One example in my opinion of such a surviving gatha is the Atharvaveda
Shaunaka 5.11. The R^ik might be a more local development amidst the Indo-Aryans R^ishis but it is possible that it
is merely an artefact of poor preservation of the Iranian material.
The yashts could be equivalent to the yajus though it appears
equivalence in not a homologous one.

Indra & Thor

> IEists refer to indra’s slaying of vrtra as similar to IE myths of a
> hero who slays a dragon.

Actually there are different issues here: The dragon myths and the
demon myths- both of which in my opinion can be traced back to the
PIE period and may even have homologs in the cultures that
diverged even before PIE. The dragon myth,involved the slaying of a
serpentine dragon and is attested in the Indian stream not by the
vR^itra myth but by the ahi myth. Ahi was clearly serpentine entity
quite distinct from vR^itra. Ahi emerges in the Iranian world as Azhi
Dahaka who was slain by Thraetaona with the aid of Verethraghna. Thor
slays a similar serpent termed Jormungand in the great battle of
Ragnarok. Zeus’ battles with Typhon are the greek version of this.

The demon myth involved the slaying of more anthropic entities
: dAnu, vR^itra, namUchi, kUyava and pipru fall in that category. We
see them as the jotunar slain by Thor in Germanic lore and the great
battles of Zeus with the Titans in the yavana world. In this context
some hymns of the early Germanic folk are very reminiscent of the
mantras of shaunaka or vAmadeva:
A hymn to Thor by Vetrlidi Summarlidason:

You smashed the limbs of Leiku, You bashed Thrivaldi
You knocked down Starkad, you trod Gjalp dead under foot.

A hymn to Thor by Thorbjorn Disarskald:
Your Mjollnir rang on Keila’s skull, you crushed the body of
Kjallandi,
you had killed Lut and Leidi, you made blood flow from Buseyra
you finished Hengjankapta, Hyrrokin died before that
earlier the dusky Svivor was robbed of her life.

Here is a hymn of a Germanic priestess Steinunn to the great god Thor
in response to a Christian missionary trying to convert the pagans.
She invokes Thor (who as the thunderer) destroyed the Saxon missionary
Thangbrand’s ship. You can again see deep impress of the Indra-like
deity on the pagan mind and the clear disdain for the fake god Christ
being peddled by the missionary (“The dasas who are anindra!”). In
many ways this is sort of a tragic hymn for it represents the last
bastion of our cultural kin in western Europe. But when we look back
we have many reasons to feel pleased that we are the last upholders of
the great Indo-European traditions that has elsewhere been obliterated
by the Abrahamic maniacs. It is important that we do not lose our
ultimately Indo-European identity in the very least to our internal
negationism and Rajaramism.

He that giant’s offspring slayeth
Broke the mew-field’s bison stout,
Thus the Gods, bell’s warder grieving,
Crushed the falcon of the strand;
To the courser of the causeway
Little good was that god Christ,
When Thor shattered ships to pieces
Gylfi’s reindeer Christ could not help.
Thangbrand’s vessel from her moorings,
Sea-king’s steed, Thor wrathful tore,
Shook and shattered all her timbers,
Hurled her broadside on the beach;
Ne’er again shall Viking’s snow-shoe,
On the briny billows glide,
For a storm by Thor awakened
Dashed the bark to splinters small.

> – Thor was the popular god. (Odin, the king of the gods of the
> Norse, was not widely worshipped, but instead primarily followed by
> the upper classes.) Indra is claimed by some to have been the main
> popular god among Vedist Hindus at some time

Indra clearly was indeed a very special deity for the Indo-Aryans. It
appears that the Aryans considered most of their deities to be
equipotent, but clearly the worship Indra was pinnacle of the core
Aryan religion. The Indra Mahotsava was the most important
public festival and just as with the Greeks, romans or germans the
best of the Indic votary poetry was aimed at Indra. The basic spirit
of Indra worship is far from gone amidst the lay Hindus. Much of
Indra has been transparently transfered to the hero cult of rAma the
ikshvAku.

> – Indra wields the vajra (thunderbolt). Thor wields the mjollnir
> (thunder-hammer).

There are more tied into this comparison. Thor’s mjollnir was forged
specially for him to slay the Jotunar just as tvashTA forged Indra’s
vajra for the slaying of the dAsas and dAnavas.

The nordics used the mjollnir is a rite called the hallowing rite
where they sanctified a bride during marriage or a new born with an
image of the hammer. This was called ‘vigja’. Now this is a cognate of
Roman vegeo- to invigorate, and descends from the same root as
Sanskrit vajra.

> >Stop peddling this myth of Hindu-Norseman bhai-bhai.

You and your like-minded fellows are free to remain profoundly deluded
in your negationist fervor. The opposition that you all are raising to
the Indo-European unification is only going to consigned to the
nearest historical trash-can at end of this confused generation of
Hindus, tossing about as a boat cutoff from its moorings. However in
the mean time it may cause a serious obstruction to the flow of
understanding of the ontology of the Hindu world to its lay
practioners.

> Again, aren’t these 2000 years apart and 10000 miles apart, and so
> either you have to consider these human societies to be as
> deterministic as chemical solutions, or you have to

Context, Context, please read more about other IE cultures with an
open mind. 2000 years and 10000 miles mean nothing in this context. It
is a product of probabilities: a smaller number than the individual
probabilities.

On Vedic Astrology and Abhijit

<<Will the Vedic Astrologers explain what happened to Abhijit?>>

While I am no vedic astrologer, I was tempted to state something here:
abhijit’s disappearance is apparently not due to the yavana influence
on Hindu astrology. It has something to do with the timing of the
some of the most ancient sacrificial rituals when the sacrificial
session was initiated with punarvasu.
The most ancient form of the yearly sattra had the viShuvAn day
falling after a set of 3*6 day rites called the abhiplava ShaLaha and
1*6 day rite called the pR^iShThya ShaLaha were completed.
Immediately after this is the abhijit day, followed by 3 svarasAman
days. With no bright star near the ecliptic to mark the viShuvAn and
an indication was needed to know the exact position of the viShuvAn
day. Here is where the abhijit day was important because the viShuvAn
point lay 4-5 degrees away from abhijit. thus the abhijit+3
svarasAman days accounted for the movement of the sun by the required
amount to reach the viShuvAn point on the ecliptic. As precession
pushed the viShuvAn far away from the abhijit it lost its practical
importance and probably favored its loss.

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