Hindu’s Life according to Atharva Veda

Image of Vedic God Varuna

compiled by London Swaminathan
Date: 8 July 2017
Time uploaded in London- 15-43
Post No. 4062

 
Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks.

 

The life of a Vedic Hindu may be introduced by the following graphic sketch by Griffith:

“Setting aside the rivalries, wars and conquests of kings princes, and the lofty claims and powers of the hierarchy, we may follow the course of the middle-class Hindu’s life from the cradle to the funeral pile, and even accompany him to his final home in the world of the Departed.

We hear the benedictive charm pronounced over the expectant mother before her child is born, and in due time on the darling’s first two teeth. We attend the solemn ceremony in which the youth is invested with his new garment whose assumption signifies his recognition as an adult member of the family with new responsibilities and new duties to perform.

 

As his fancy turns to thoughts of love, we hear him murmuring the charm which shall win him the maiden of his choice, and the lullaby which shall seal every eye but hers in his beloved’s house and enable him to visit her without detection or suspicion.

Picture of Vedic God Indra

 

We follow him in his formal and somewhat unromantic wooing of a bride through a friend who acts as match-maker; we see the nuptial procession and the bride’s introduction to her new home; we hear her benediction on the bridegroom, and the epithalamium pronounced over the wedded pair.

 

The young husband is an agriculturist, and we see him supe rintending the ploughmen and praying to Indra and Pushan and the Genii of agriculture to bless their labours. Anon, with propitiatory prayer, he is cutting a new channel to bring the water of the brook to the land which is ready for irrigation; or he praying for rain or an abundant crop.

 

Again, when the corn is ripe he is busy among the men who gather in harvest, invoking the aid of good natured goblins, and leaving on the ground some sheaves the to remunerate their toil.  At sunset he superintends the return of the cows who have been grazing under the protection of the Wind-God in the breezy pastures and their return under Divine guidance, and the reunion of all the members of the household are celebrated with symbolical mixt oblation, with milk and a brew of grain.

 

 

His wealth and family increase in answer to his repeated prayer for children and riches, and a new house must be built on a large scale. The building is erected under the careful eye of the master and blessed and consecrated with prayers to the Gods and to the Queen of the Home. The mistress of the house brings forth the well filled pitcher, all present are rele gated with the stream of molten batter blent with nectar and the householder enters and takes formal possession his dwelling with fire, the two most important necessaries of human life. The house, moreover- a wooden building with a thatched roof has been specially assured against fire by a prayer to Agni the God of that element with the additional security afforded by the immediate neighbourhood of good stream of pool of water.

Image of praying for rains and it is called Varuna Japa.

 

Such or something like this, was the ordinary life of the agriculturist. A devout believer in the gods, he did not spend his substance on the performance of costly sacrifices, but was content with simple ceremonies and such humble offerings as he could well afford. His chief care was for the health and well-being of himself, his wife, children and dependents for plentiful harvests and for thriving and multiplying cattle; and these were the blessing for which he most frequently prayed. His chief troubles were an occasional touch of malarial fever or rheumatism, a late or scanty rainfall, a storm that lodged his ripe barley, lightning that struck his cattle, and similar mischances caused by the anger of the gods or the malevolence of demons; and he was always armed with prayers and spells against the recurrence of such disasters.

 

……………………continued in second part

 

 

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