ramanan50

Independent Tamil Culture Myth

In Uncategorized on July 24, 2014 at 10:54

The Myth of an independent,secular(?) Dravidian Culture has been and is propagated.

 

Let us see whether the Statement that the Dravidian, more specifically the Tamil Culture was/is independent of Sanatana Dharma, on the basis of historical and archaeological evidence.

Panyan Coin.jpg.

Pandyan coin depicting a temple between hill symbols and elephant, Pandyas, Sri Lanka, 1st century CE.

 

1.Tamil quotes Vedas right from the Sangam Age.

 

2.Vedas and Sanskrit quote Tamil and the land of Tamils, pointedly at Dravida, meaning south of the Vindhyas.

 

3.The earliest recorded Tamil Kingdom was Pandya Kingdom.

 

Lord Krishna visited the capital of Pandyas , Madurai.

 

Arjuna married a Pandyan Princess during his pilgrimage(see my post on this-Arjuna’s Pilgrimage)

 

Ancient Chera Kingdom was from 400 BC to 397 AD.

 

Sangam Cholas 300 BC to 240 AD.

 

Central Pandya  550 BC to 1311 AD.

 

The earliest Pandya to be found in epigraph is Nedunjeliyan, figuring in the Minakshipuram record assigned from the 2nd to the 1st centuries BC.

The record documents a gift of rock-cut beds, to a Jain ascetic.

Punch marked coins in the Pandya country dating from around the same time have also been found.

 

Jainism came after Vedic Period.

 

So when Jainism had made inroads the religion that was in existence was Hinduism even in Tamil Nadu.

 

This may be known by the gifts made by the Pandya Kings to Brahmins(Vediyar, Anthanar)

 

Again we have a reference to a Chera King who participated in the Mahabharata war;he fed both the Kaurava and Pandya Armies.

 

“Reference to Perum Chorru Udiyan Cheral Adan, in the second verse of thePurananuru, an earliest text of Sangam literature, is about his feeding the two armies of the Mahabharata battle.

 

And PT Srinivasa Iyengar states that Perunchoruudiyan Chealathan had granted 100 Velis (one Veli equals 100 acres) of land to Brahmins on the condition that he should see the smoke from the Homa from the Brahimn Agraharam daily

 

He also performed Tharpana, rituals for the dead, to those  who died in the Mahabharata war.

 

Hence the religion that was practiced in Tamil Nadu was Sanatana Dharma and not an independent Tamil Culture.

 

Based on the Aryan invasion theory, it was assumed that only Apasthamba came to the South that Hinduism was introduced.

 

This is incorrect.

 

The Five gems of Tamil Valayapathi, Kundalakesi,Seevaka Sinthamani,Silappathiparam and Manimekalai.

 

All these epics dating to BC (appx) refer to Vedic practices and Silappathikaram and  Seevaka Sinthamani Manimekalai refer to Buddhism and Jainism as well.

 

The canard of an independent Tamil Culture is a Myth.

 

How and Why.

And yet, such statements do not go deep enough, as they still imply a North-South contrast and an unknown Dravidian substratum over which the layer of �Aryan� culture was deposited. This view is only milder than that of the proponents of a �separate� and �secular� Dravidian culture, who insist on a physical and cultural Aryan-Dravidian clash as a result of which the pure �Dravidian� culture got swamped. As we have seen, archaeology, literature and Tamil tradition all fail to come up with the slightest hint of such a conflict. Rather, as far as the eye can see into the past there is every sign of a deep cultural interaction between North and South, which blossomed not through any �imposition� but in a natural and peaceful manner, as everywhere else in the subcontinent and beyond.

As regards an imaginary Dravidian �secularism� (another quite inept word to use in the Indian context), it has been posited by many scholars�: Marr,[56] Zvelebil[57] and others characterize Sangam poetry as �secular� and �pre-Aryan�[58] after severing its heroic or love themes from its strong spiritual undercurrents, in a feat typical of Western scholarship whose scrutiny always depends more on the magnifying glass than on the wide-angle lens. A far more insightful view comes from the historian M.�G.�S. Narayanan, who finds in Sangam literature �no trace of another, indigenous, culture other than what may be designated as tribal and primitive.�[59] He concludes�:

The Aryan-Dravidian or Aryan-Tamil dichotomy envisaged by some scholars may have to be given up since we are unable to come across anything which could be designated as purely Aryan or purely Dravidian in the character of South India of the Sangam Age. In view of this, the Sangam culture has to be looked upon as expressing in a local idiom all the essential features of classical �Hindu� culture.[ 60]

However, it is not as if the Tamil land passively received this culture�: in exchange it generously gave elements from its own rich temperament and spirit. In fact, all four Southern States massively added to every genre of Sanskrit literature, not to speak of the signal contributions of a Shankara, a Ramanuja or a Madhwa. Cultural kinship does not mean that there is nothing distinctive about South Indian tradition�; the Tamil land can justly be proud of its ancient language, culture and genius, which have a strong stamp and character of their own, as anyone who browses through Sangam texts can immediately see�: for all the mentions of gods, more often than not they just provide a backdrop�; what occupies the mind of the poets is the human side, its heroism or delicate emotions, its bouncy vitality, refined sensualism or its sweet love of Nature. �Vivid pictures of full-blooded life exhibiting itself in all its varied moods,� as Raghunathan puts it. �One cannot but be impressed by the extraordinary vitality, variety and richness of the poetic achievement of the old Tamil.�[61] Ganapathy Subbiah adds, �The aesthetic quality of many of the poems is breathtakingly refined.�[62] It is true also that the Tamil language developed its own literature along certain independent lines�; conventions of poetry, for instance, are strikingly original and more often than not different from those of Sanskrit literature.

More importantly, many scholars suggest that �the bhakti movement began in the Tamil country and later spread to North India.�[63] Subbiah, in a profound study, not only challenges the misconceived �secular� portrayal of the Sangam texts, but also the attribution of the Tamil bhakti to a northern origin�; rather, he suggests, it was distinctly a creation of Tamil culture, and Sangam literature �a reflection of the religious culture of the Tamils.�[64]

As regards the fundamental contributions of the South to temple architecture, music, dance and to the spread of Hindu culture to other South Asian countries, they are too well known to be repeated here. Besides, the region played a crucial role in preserving many important Sanskrit texts (a few Vedic recensions, Bhasa�s dramas, the Arthashastra for instance) better than the North was able to do, and even today some of India�s best Vedic scholars are found in Tamil Nadu and Kerala.[*] As Swami Vivekananda put it, �The South had been the repository of Vedic learning.�[65]

 

 

Citation .

 

www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/

 

www.micheldanino.voiceofdharma.com/tamilculture.html

 

14 Goddesses Temple Chaturdasa, Agartala Tripura

In Hinduism on July 24, 2014 at 07:56

 

Chaturdasha Temple also called as Fourteen Goddess Temple  is  situated near old Agartala, Tripura, India.

 

Chaturdasa Temple, Agartala,Tripura.jpg

Chaturdasa Temple, Agartala,Tripura.

This temple was built in honour of fourteen Gods and Goddessess, together called the Chaturdasha Devata, by King Krishna Manikya Debbarma of Tripura and these deities are ceremoniously worshipped during Kharchi Puja.

The Kokborok names of the fourteen deities are,

Lampra, Akhatra, Bikhatra, Burasa, Thumnairok, Bonirok, Sangroma, Mwtaikotor, Twima, Songram, Noksumwtai, Mailuma, Khuluma and Swkalmwtai.

Near the sacred 14 Goddess Temple during the month of July every year a Kharchi festival is organised and thousands of pilgrims and devotees visit this festival.

 

How To reach.

Agartala is the nearest airport and rail head to this temple. It is easily accessible by buses and taxis.

Where Are Manuscripts Of Vedas

In Hinduism on July 23, 2014 at 21:21

The Vedas, the Scriptures of the Hindus are voluminous.

 

They were not written by any one but grasped from Ether.

 

Tradition of Vedic Chanting.jpg

Tradition of Vedic Chanting.

 

(Image copyright Indira Gandhi National Center for Arts)

 

There are four Vedas, Rig,Yajur, Sama and Atharva .

 

In addition to this, we have Upavedas,Vedangas,Parisista,  not to speak of the Smritis.

 

Of this lot this is what has been collected.

 

“The complete corpus of Vedic mantras as collected in Bloomfield‘s Vedic Concordance (1907) consists of some 89,000 padas (metrical feet), of which 72,000 occur in the four Samhitas

 

This is only for the Samhitas.

 

Brahmanas,Aranyakas,Upanishads remain.

 

There seems to be no information on when the Vedas were written in the form of manuscripts.

 

The Digitized copies  of The Rigveda Brahmanas: the Aitareya and Kausītaki Brāhmanas of the Rigveda are in American Libraries.

 

(Link provided below).

 

  1. Rgvedasamhita
    Accession No. : 5/1875-76
    Material : Birch Bark
    Uniqueness / Pecularity : The manuscript was used by Prof. F. Max Müller for the edition of the Rgveda with Sayana’s commentary. The manuscript is a beautiful specimen of the old style Manuscript of Kashmir.
  2. Bhagavata Purana
    Accession No. : 61/1907-1915
    No. of Illustrations : 128
    Uniqueness / Pecularity : It is one of the most precious mss. of the Institute’s collection. It contains 128 beautiful paintings in color.

 

These are Thirty Volumes of Rig Veda Samhitas which Max Mueller had quoted and wrote his Books upon.

 

Rest of the manuscripts’ whereabouts not known despite claims that they are in Germany, US do not seem to hold, as far as I could fathom.

 

Readers may contribute.

 

The best that had happened to Hinduism is that they have not been written but transmitted Orally.

 

That is the reason they have survived.

 

Hope efforts have been made to preserve available oral material has been saved.

 

 

The Vedas on UNESCO Register.

 

The Vedas comprise a vast corpus of Sanskrit poetry, philosophical dialogue, myth, and ritual incantations developed and composed by Aryans over 3,500 years ago. Regarded by Hindus as the primary source of knowledge and the sacred foundation of their religion, the Vedas embody one of the world’s oldest surviving cultural traditions.

The Vedic heritage embraces a multitude of texts and interpretations collected in four Vedas, commonly referred to as “books of knowledge” even though they have been transmitted orally. The Rig Veda is an anthology of sacred hymns; the Sama Veda features musical arrangements of hymns from the Rig Veda and other sources; the Yajur Veda abounds in prayers and sacrificial formulae used by priests; and the Atharna Veda includes incantations and spells. The Vedas also offer insight into the history of Hinduism and the early development of several artistic, scientific and philosophical concepts, such as the concept of zero.

Expressed in the Vedic language, which is derived from classical Sanskrit, the verses of the Vedas were traditionally chanted during sacred rituals and recited daily in Vedic communities. The value of this tradition lies not only in the rich content of its oral literature but also in the ingenious techniques employed by the Brahmin priests in preserving the texts intact over thousands of years. To ensure that the sound of each word remains unaltered, practitioners are taught from childhood complex recitation techniques that are based on tonal accents, a unique manner of pronouncing each letter and specific speech combinations.

Although the Vedas continue to play an important role in contemporary Indian life, only thirteen of the over one thousand Vedic recitation branches have survived. Moreover, four noted schools – in Maharashtra (central India), Kerala and Karnataka (southern India) and Orissa (eastern India) – are considered under imminent threat.

 

Citation.

 

http://www.unesco.org/culture/ich/en/RL/0006

 

www.acrhive.org

 

 

www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/vedas

 

www.bori.ac.in

 

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