Linguistic Knowledge of Vedic Hindus (Post No.4498)

Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 15 DECEMBER 2017 


Time uploaded in London-  15-55



Post No. 4498

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


Vedic Hindus were highly educated. We come across many linguistic observations in all the four Vedas. Rig Veda, the oldest book, has many hymns dealing with linguistic points. Satyakam Varma has summarised them in his book Vedic Studies.


Rig Vedic hymns 1-164, 4-58, 8-59, 8-10, 10-114, 10-125, 10-177 and many hymns in the Atharva Veda talk about language and linguistics.


A brief summary of the points raised by the Vedic seers in those hymns are as follows:

Hymn 1-164

Dirgatamas’ hymn 1-164 is one of the longest hymns the Rig Veda. He talks about various subjects in a coded language with lot of symbolism.

In the hymn, mantra 24 refers to the seven speeches

Mantra 24 points out that this faculty of speech is found only in the human beiges.

Mantra 45 gives information about the divisions of speech. Grammarian Patanjali and others also discussed this in detail.

Hymn 4-58

Patanjali referred to part of this hymn. The four parts of speech are explained here. Patanjali discusses seven cases and the three originating centres of pronunciation.


In the opening mantra of this hymn, the originating source of speech has been referred to as GUHA while BRAHMA has been referred to as a title for the one who knows the intricacies of the four -fold speech and its behaviour.

Hymn 8-59

Some of the most prominent observations of this hymn are as follows:

The ultimate truth is brought forth through the medium of seven-fold speech

These seven folds or divisions of speech are seven sisters of the ultimate truth

Speech protects us through its seven physical and three temporal divisions. And

three chief aspects of speech-behaviour are mental, and intellectual faculties, coupled with the acquired knowledge.


Hymn 8-100

The tenth and eleventh verses of this hymn declare that speech is the expressive medium for human as well as animal beings, the only difference being in the degree of distinctness

Hymn 10-71

This hymn is most important and is soley devoted to the linguistic observations alone, some of which are as follows:

An initial expression of name is indicative of a wholesome integrated expression of the accumulated ideas in the speaker’s mind. Thus, it originates as a representative of complete statement.

The emotions are desires of the Self are filtered in the mind, from where it takes the shape of words or speech, which is expressed externally with the help of the articulatory forces.

Thus, a word takes its usable form first in one’s mind which is then pronounced from seven places and in different tones.

Speech and language are not only the objects ears and eyes alone; no one can understand it without the help of mind, the sharpness of otherwise of which makes the difference in one’s power of understanding.

With only training and knowledge, we can learn the correct usage of the language and avoid its misuse, generated mostly from our ignorance.


Hymn 10-114

In at least six verses of this hymn, different aspects of linguistic phenomenon have been discussed. In the fourth and fifth verses, the principle of multiple exprepressibility of one and the same truth has been stressed explicitly. The seventh verse declares that the seven fold speech is capable to express all expressible forms.

Hymn 10-125

The hymn discloses the inner strength of speech, more particularly its unifying and harmonising powers.

Hymn 10-177

If interpreted in its proper prspective this hymn discloses the four steps involved in the speech production. It consists only three verses. Its topic is Patanga which often has been interpreted as Sun or Supreme Self. But its proximity with the speech equates it with the Speech Self or Vagatma.


Sabda Brahman

The original concept of the eternity of speech has been propunded in the Rig Veda, making speech one in extent and content with Brahman, which stands for Supreme Self, Knowledge and Veda alike


My Comments


These verses spread over different Mandalas (chapters) of Rig Veda show that they are not isolated ones. Moreover, these cover different periods of time. The Vedic people were neither nomads nor primitive. Great grammarians like Patanjali who lived at least 2000 years ago interpret them correctly. So we don’t need any help from the ‘Western Sayanas’.


The absence of such linguistic and grammatical observations in other ancient cultures show that we are well advanced than those cultures. And it also shows we were sons of the soil. If we have come from Central Asia or Europe, at least some remnants must be there.

Oldest Tamil Book

Oldest Tamil book Tolkappiam is a grammatical treatise. Scholars date it between first and third century BCE. Even that book refers to the Vedas where it dealt with pronunciation and origin of speech (Sutra 102). If it has reached the southern most part of India 2300 years ago, we must understand how much we have progressed in the science of languages.

The four divisions of speech are a very interesting one. It needs further research. The Vedic seers say that the audible speech is only one of the four.

Number Seven is associated with lot of things in the Vedas. Seven Sisters or Seven Mothers (Sapta Mata) is seen in Indus seals as well.





Written by London Swaminathan


Date: 3 NOVEMBER 2017


Time uploaded in London- 9-56 AM



Post No. 4362

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

INDRA IN A TEMPLE; Lalgudi Veda post

Vedas are mysterious; the more we read the more we wonder. Even with the available English translations of foreigners who did not understand or appreciate our culture and religion, we know a lot of things. We must read it between the lines. In Hindi, Marathi and Guajarati there are original translations and interpretations; In many other languages, only translations are available


Here are some more wonders:–

Miraculous powers are attributed to the prayers of Rishis (seers) in the following passages in the Rig Veda:


viswaatrasya rakshati brahma idam bhaaratam janam—RV 3-53-12


Praises to Indra have I sung, sustainer of this earth and heaven. This prayer of Viswamitra keeps secure the race of Bharatas.

the race of Bharatas is the descendants of Viswamitra, Bharata being the son of  celebrated Sakuntala,  the daughter of Vviswamitra and Apsaras Mena.


evam nu kam daasaraaknje sudaasam praavad

indro brahmanaa vo vasishtaahaa- RV 7-33-3

“So verily, with these he crossed the river (Yamuna), in company with these he slaughtered Bheda.”

vasishtasya stuvatah indrah asnot urum trutsumya akrunod lokam RV 7-33-5


“Like thirsty men they looked to heaven, in the battle with the Ten Kings, surrounded and imploring.


Then Indra heard Vaishta, as he praised him, and gave the Trustus ample room and freedom.”


These passages show that Indra answered the prayers by giving them miraculous powers. They could cross even deep rivers.


Later we came to know about Vasudeva with Krishna crossed the River Yamuna and Moses crossed the sea with his followers.

The mention of River Yamuna in the Battle of Ten Kings surprised the historians. Even during this early period, the Vedic Hindus spread up to River Yamuna. The Battle of Ten Kings can be compared to several Wars fought by the Three Tamil Kingdoms Chera, Choza and Pandya. Every time one king attacked the other two kings, a lot of chieftains joined one or the other. So the kings were praised as one who defeated Nine Kings or seven kings. Though all the Tamil kings spoke the same language, followed the same culture and same religion, fights like Ten Kings War of Rig Veda (Dasaraja Yuddha) occurred through out 1500 years of Tamil history. Tamils were the longest fighting race in the world.


Half baked foreigners, without understanding  Indian culture, dubbed one or two as Aryans and others as Dravidians or aborigines. The fact of the matter is they were all Vedic Hindus. Foreign coolies concocted their own stories. If one has to understand Indian culture one must study all the 2500 poems of Tamil literature. We have to thank god for foreigners not able to read Tamil poems; otherwise they would have dubbed half of them as Aryans and others Dravidians.



“To these who knowest , Agni, you Disposer, all these wise SECRET SPEECHES I have uttered.

Sung to you, sage, the charming words of wisdom, to you, O Singer, with my thoughts and praises” – RV 4-3-16


2000 year old Tamil Sangam Literature translated the word Veda into ‘Marai’ which means ‘Secre’t, ‘Hidden’ (meaning).




The severest blow to all the foreigners who advocated the Aryan Invasion Theory comes from the Brahmana Literatures.



“One must not sleep with his head towards the west, lest he should sleep stretching his legs towards the gods. The Southern quarters belongs to the Fathers (Pitrs=departed souls); and the Western one to the Snakes (s+naka= Nagas); and that faultless one is the one where the gods ascended to the Heaven. And the Northern quarters belongs to Men; Hence in human practice a hall or a shed is constructed with the top beams running from South to North because the North is the quarter of men. It is only for a consecrated, not for an unconsecrated person, that is constructed with the top beams running from West to East.—Sat. Brah3-1-1-7


(This shows that some sort of Vastu Shastra existed from the Vedic period)



“He cuts off some goat’s hair and lets loose the animals towards the North East for this North East is the region of both gods and men – he thus bestows cattle on that region, and hence both gods and men subsist on cattle- 6-4-4-22


Standing with his face towards North East, Prajapati (Brahma, the Creator) created creatures, and again North East is the quarter of both gods and men…………… In that quarter is the GATE OF THE WORLD OF HEAVEN.—6-6-2-2/4


“Standing with his face towards North East, Prajapati (Brahma, the Creator) created offspring by means of the Vishnu strides; in like manner does the sacrifice now, standing towards North east, create offspring by means of the Vishnu strides. 6-7-2-12

“In whatever direction he may intend to drive, let him first drive east, for the East is Agni’s region 6-8-1-8

“With the they proceed to South west quarter, for that is Nirrti’s quarter (Nirrti= Goddess of Evil); he thus places Nirrti in Nirrti’s quarter-7-2-1-8


“THE EAST TENDS GODWARD – meaning towards Agni 7-3-21 “

(I consider this as the origin of Vastu Shastra; so Vastu Shastra is several thousand years old!!!)


Foreigners said that Vedic culture spread from the western direction (Punjab, Haryana, Gujarat, Rajasthan) to the East, but Vedic scriptures reject those bluffs. Indra is allocated East and Varuna is allocated West in Vedic scriptures. Apart from tha,t the rivers are listed from east to West. And Hindus also believe that Bhageeratha and his forefathers lived on the banks of Ganges. Moreover, Kasi/Benares/ Varanasi was the oldest city in the world and it is on the banks of Ganges.  All of these prove that the westerners’ views are incorrect.

—Subham, Subham–


Hospitality in Rig Veda and Atharva Veda (Post No.4004)

Written by London Swaminathan
Date: 15 June 2017
Time uploaded in London- 20-49
Post No. 4004
Pictures are taken from various sources such as Face book, Wikipedia and newspapers; thanks.


The concept of hospitality is unknown in any ancient civilization except Hindu Civilization. We may have one or two instances in the ancient world, but it was not portrayed a s a virtue there. Rig Veda and Atharva Veda have many hymns on it. Sangam Tamil literature and lature Tirukkural, the Tamil Veda have several verses praising it. Sita and Tamil heroine Kannaki (vide. Tamil epic Silappadikaram) regret that they have lost the opportunity of supporting the guests. Mahabharata and Pancatantra have several stories supporting this virtue.


It all started with the Taittiriya Upanishad. The very first day young children as young as seven year old were taught Athithi Devo Bhava (Treat the guests as Gods). Tirukkural has more than ten couplets praising the hospitality. Thiruvalluvar, the author of Tamil Veda Tirukkural, talks about miracles in the fields of the farmers who supports the guests. He says that crops grow on its own without sowing the seeds. He adds that the angels will be waiting in the heaven to welcome such good people. Sangam Tamil book Purananuru says ta the drums started roaring in the heaven as Indra got ready to welcome the Tamil chieftain Ay Andiran; he was a great philanthrophist. The very name Ay Andiran is nothing but the Tamilzed form of AJA INDRA (Indra becomes Andiran, Andrew etc in Taml and English).

The concept of hospitality exploded the theory of Aryan migration and Aryan-Dravidian divisions. 2300 year old Tamil literature and 5000 year old Vedic literature have ample evidence to show that it existed in a vast geographical area – the cultural empire of India, which are divided as 15 countries now. Thousands of customs mentioned in the Vedas are found only in India from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and nowhere else in the world. This shows all these are developed in the course of their living here for thousands of years. This is a severe blow to those who divide the world into Arya and Non Aryans.


Another proof for hospitality exists until today in the form of Choutries (Chatrams). From Kashmir to Kanyakumari we see thousands and thousands of FREE BOARDING AND LODGING BUILDINGS. No where in the world we can see such Chatrams (shelters for pilgrims). It is a unique Hindu concept to earn merits/Punya. Thousands of inscriptions from the days of Asoka talk about such free boarding and lodging to all the pilgrims and secular passengers. Several towns and villages in tamil Nadu still have the suffix CHATRAM in their names!


No need to sow the Fields!

Now let us look at two couplets from Tirukkural and two hymns from the Vedas:-

The farm of the man wo feeds his guests and eats what is left, will yield crops even though seeds may not be sown (Kural 85)

Having entertained his guests, the man who awaits new guests will be cordially welcomed by the Devas/angels in the Heaven (Kural 86)


Guests in the Atharva Veda (15-11)

Rishi- Atharvan

Let him to whose house the Vratya (Pravrajaka) who possesses

this knowledge (of Divine rule) comes as a guest,

rise up of his own accord to meet him and say, Vratya,

where did you stop overnight? Vratya, here is water.

Let them refresh you, Vratya. Whatever you like, let

that be, Vratya; whatever your wish, let that be Vratya,

as you desire, so let it be.

Another Hymn from AV 15-10

So let the King whose house the Vratya  who possesses this knowledge comes as a guest,

honour him as one superior to himself, so that he does not work against the ruling power or the state

From him verily the spiritual power and the ruling power arose.

(according to Apastamba Srauta Sutra, the term Vraatya is to be used in addressing a guest).

Guests in the Rig Veda (10-117)

The Devas have not given hunger to be our death,

even to the well-fed man death comes in many shapes

The wealth of the liberal never wastes away,

he who gives no protection finds no consoler.(1)


He who, possessed of food, hardens his heart against

the weak man, craving nourishment, and suffering,

who comes to him for help, though of old he helped him

surely such a one finds no consoler.(2)


He is liberal who gives to one who asks for alms

to the distressed man who seeks food, wandering; success comes to him in the challenge of battle

and for future conflicts he makes a friend for him. (3)


He is no friend who does not give to a friend

to a comrade who comes imploring for food;

let him leave such a man – his is not a home—

and rather seek a stranger who brings him comfort. (4)


Let the rich man satisfy one who seeks help

and let him look upon a longer pathway;

wealth revolves like the wheels of a chariot,

coming now to one, now to another. (5)



Mystery of Horse: Sudden Appearance from Egypt to India! (Post No.3181)


Written by London swaminathan

Date: 23 September 2016

Time uploaded in London: 15-30

Post No.3181

Pictures are taken from various sources; thanks.


Rig Veda, the oldest book in the world, contains references to horse, horse race, chariots and riding in almost all the ten Mandalas. No other literature in the world has so many references to horses. May be Zend Avesta which came after Rig Veda has some references. We know Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey came nearly 1000 years after the Rig Veda.


A research paper submitted on the basis of fossils discovered in Western India in 2014 showed that the ancient relatives of horses originated in India.

“Working at the edge of a coal mine in India, a team of Johns Hopkins researchers and colleagues have filled in a major gap in science’s understanding of the evolution of a group of animals that includes horses and rhinos. That group likely originated on the subcontinent when it was still an island headed swiftly for collision with Asia, the researchers report today in the online journal Nature Communications. It happened more than fifty million years ago. (20 November 2014 newspaper report)


Though there is a very big gap in time between the Rig Veda and the fossils, the fossil discovery shows that horses are not new to this region. Actually a great mystery lies in the fact that horses appeared suddenly in Egypt, Middle East and India at the “same time”. But latest hydrological research in the Sarasvati basin shows that Rig Veda was “composed” or “heard” by the seers before 1900 BCE. The precession of the earth and the stars mentioned in the Vedic literature shows that Rig Veda must have been composed or heard before 3000 BCE. This means that the horses were exported from India to other parts of the world.


Is there any other proof to support this hypotheses? Yes, we have archaeological proof from the Hittite empire. They were trained in Sanskrit!

Mitannian kings had Sanskrit names found in Ramayana and Vishnu sahasranama such as Dasarata, Pratardana. But being distant from the place of origin they had corrupted spellings like Tushratta. We see such trends in Mauritius, Sri Lanka and Malaysia where the migrated Tamils write Turka instead of Durga, Tamayanti instead of Damayanti, Murder mootoo instead of Marudamuthu.


We also find the Sanskrit word asva/horse in their names: Biridaswa (Brhad Asva) possessing great horses, sattasva (Sapta+ Asva), possessing or winning seven horses.


Zend Avesta, holy book of Zoroastrians, also has names such as Drvaspa ( agoddess)- she who keeps horses in good health, Vistaspa ( a king of Bactria), son of Aurvat aspa, Pourus aspa, father of Zarathustra, he who possess many horses, Arbataspa master of war like hoses, Huaspa- having good horses.

Aspa= Asva= Hrasva= Horse

Kikkuli of Mitanni was the one who taught them to use war horses. His horse training manual is in Sanskrit:

Wartanna = vartana = a turn

Akika = Eka = one turn

Tera = tri = three turns

Panza = pancha = five turns

Nava artanna = nava = nine turns.

Foreigners looking at the colloquial form of Sanskrit thought that it was Proto Sanskrit. It is actually the localised Sanskrit. Even today Sanskrit words are Tamilized in Tamil Nadu and the ancient Tamil Grammar book has rules for it. Without understanding this, they thought it was a different language.


There is another proof also. The Bogaizkoy inscription mentioned the Vedic Gods in the same order as Rig Veda. When two kings signed an agreement they sealed their agreement with the Vedic mantra. All the scholars who studied Vedas agree that the Vedas originated on Indian soil. This shows that  the Hindu scriptures have spread to Turkey-Syria border around 1400 BCE!

We see horses at the same time from Egypt to India


With the archaeological and linguistics evidence, now it is confirmed that the Hindus went from India to give training in horses. There are more proofs in the Rig Veda:-

The horse was called asva, atya (runner), arvant (swift), strong for pulling (vaajin), the runner (sapti). Mare was called with four different names. Different colours of horses are also described. A white horse with black ears is mentioned in the Athrva Vedas as of special value. Horses were highly prized. Gifts of 400 horse are mentioned. Horses were decorated with pearls and gold. Horses from Indus and Sarasvati were praised high.   Kings had names as Asvapati etc. chariots, races and Asvamedha Yajna are mentioned.

All these show that the technic of raising horses originated in India.

Now that we know the Rig Veda is dated between 1900 BCE and 3000 BCE following dates are better understood:–

Hittite empire, a city rebelling against King Anittas in 1750 BCE, fielded 40 Chariots; Hattusilis I (sathyaseela)  (1650 BCE) fielded 80 chariots at the siege of Urshu; by the Battle of Kadesh (1285 BCE) Hattusas fielded 2500 chariots under Muwattalis II (1306 BCE)



The Hyksos (Hindu Yakshas)

Egypt used ‘equus asinus’ first for carrying burdens and then ‘equus caballus’. Asiatic Hyksos captured power in Nile delta in 1750 BCE. They were the one who brought horses from India to Egypt they are shown in chariots.


We see horses in a plaque of Tuthmose III (1479 BCE). Later we see more horses. So around 1400 BCE it is seen on a large area frm Egypt to Plains of Ganges. How was it possible where there was no modern transport like today. It was possible only because India sent trainers like Kikkuli to all the countries


Science of Horses

Mitochondrial DNA tests conducted on over 600 horses from 25 breeds world wide prove that at least 17 genetic groups are involved; that horses originally from diverse locations; and there were at least six locations in which horses were domesticated. At present no direct glimse of how the first horse was domesticated (Daily telegraph, 14-8-2002)


Domesticated horse was present in Mesopotamia from 2500 BCE. Horse remains found in Syria are dated 2400 BCE. Syria and Turkey were under Vedic Kings from very early times under Kassites, Hittites and Mitanni. Standard of Ur depicts five four wheeled wagons with four equids apiece. Mesopotamian horse artefacts are dated between 2800-2500 BCE. Sice the Vedas are dated before this date by astronomical refrences, we may assume that domesticated horses went for India to other countries.


The horse appears in a Sumerian text ‘The Curse of Agade” where the Goddess Inanna of Agade, capital of Sumer, sought to bring harmony to men and nimals, among them the ass of the mountains Anse Kur ra – the horse (2000 BCE)


There are proverbs about horses in Sumerian texts :

You sweat like a horse (it is) what you have drunk

If my burden is always  to be this, I shall become weak (horse says)


Domestic horse remains are recovered from south west Iran. They are from the Kaftari era (2100-1800 BCE)


Biblical reference

Genesis 47:16 has reference to horses. Canaanites had come requesting food from Egypt; this was granted ‘in exchange for their horses, their sheep and goats, their cattle and donkeys’.

Mari used chariotry in war, and also the donkey mounted couriers. From mari comes the earliest personal record of horse riding. King Zimri Lim was advised to take the safer option of riding a mule, or in a chariot, rather than risk riding horses.


The scarcity of horses at this time is shown by the value of a single animal:

A horse is worth 30 times that of a slave

Or 500 sheep

Or 5 minas of silver (2-4 Kilos)

From the above facts  we can prove that the Rig Veda is the first source of horses provided the date 3000 BCE is accepted.



At Jaggayyapeta, India is a relief where the horse is depicted as a symbol of the world ruler- Chakravarti.


The horse sacrifice also appears in Zend Avesta , albeit in religious fiction, when 100 male horses, 1000 oxen, 10,000 lambs are offered to Ardvi sura Anahita on the Hara, the Alborz mountains south of Caspian Sea.

(This shows Zend Avesta is an imitation of Hindu scriptures, sometimes a caricature of the Hindu Vedas)

Source: The horse in the ancient world by Ann Hyland, 2003, Newspaper cuttings and my comments.




Image Worship in the Vedas: Sringeri Acharya

ganesh kutty



Compiled  by London swaminathan

Date: 24 September 2015

Post No: 2185

Time uploaded in London :–  20-52

(Thanks  for the pictures) 

His Holiness Sachidananda Siva Abhinava Narasimha Bharati Svaminah of Sringeri Mutt (33rd Head of Sringeri Shankara Mutt) said in one of his lectures:

As long as God remains but a notional hypothesis, it is impossible for our gross to have any contact with Him, much more to surrender ourselves to Him He has to be conceived of as manifesting Himself through forms which are gross enough to be comprehended by us. That conception of Godhead is not a mere abstraction for, by reason of His omnipresence, there is really no form which is not permeated by Him. He can therefore be contacted through any form in the universe. Though this proposition is theoretically perfect and true, when our capacity for such contact is taken into account, it is only some form that help us to have such contact and what those forms are prescribed by the Sastras (scriptures). The grossest of such forms but a very necessary step towards establishing contact with subtler forms is the image of God. It is sheer ignorance to decry the value of image worship.

It is sometimes urged that, in the Samhita portion of the Vedas, there is no warrant for image worship. The several Gods like Agni, Indra and Varuna sre described there with hands and feet, as holding several weapons and as doing several exploits. How can this be possible if they have no forms?

Assuming that the Samhitas do not mention image worship is it not enough if the Brahmana portions mention it? If the Penal Code makes no mention of the law of succession, does the latter lose its validity? As the Vedas comprehend both the Samhitas and the Brahmanas, it is illogical to expect that every portion should mention all that the Vedas intend to say.

It is thought by some that in image worship God the omnipresent is sought to be confined within the dimensions of the image. On the other hand, it is quite illogical to say that the omnipresent God is not in the image. Nobody who engages himself in image worship ever commits the mistake of limiting God to that image. He knows clearly that the image is resorted to for the purpose of establishing contact with the intangible universal godhead who can manifest Himself in any form.

dubai muslim deeparadhana

Nobody who wants to write is immediately able to write small letters and in a neat hand. He has to begin the practice of writing big letters on sand or on rough sheets till he gets some proficiency. Similarly, the aspirant who wants to contemplate on god has to begin by concentrating his mind on a gross visible image of God.

It is meaningless to say that we are in anyway decrying God by worshipping Him in a limited concrete image are we decrying the ruler of the land if we show respect to a picture of his> the ruler will really be pleased to know that even his picture is worshipped. He does not commit the mistaking of thinking that the picture is being worshipped in preference to himself nor is the worshipper foolish enough to think that the picture as such is his ruler

garauda, alakar koil



Post No. 725 dated 28th November 2013

“As the tastes and inclinations of people are infinite in their variety, it cannot be said that a single uniform form of God will appeal to all as worthy object of worship. Our system therefore prescribes innumerable forms from which any aspirant may choose that which most appeals to him, as the result of his pre -natal leanings and training.

“This explains why saint Vyasa has written so many Puranas in each of which he has extolled a particular form and described it as the highest. Do we not see that a hospitable host who invites a large number of friends for dinner does not content himself with preparing a particular tasty dish to be relished by all of them but has several dishes prepared so that each guest may select what is most palatable to him and partake of it more than from other dishes? The host will really be inhospitable if he wants all his guests to take only the single dish which he chooses to prepare.  The guests who are not able to relish it will have to return disappointed and hungry. It is to avoid such a contingency that several forms are prescribed for God.

“As the satisfaction of the guests is the prime motive of the host in having a variety of dishes, the variety in the forms of God is intended only to help every aspirant  towards the feet of God.

“If we take children to a sweat meat shop and ask them to select what they want , a child may prefer to have a ring shaped sweat meat, another a rod like one , another in the form of a peacock, another in the form of a chair, and so on. We know all these are made up of sugar and it is not material to us what form each child chooses. We know also that, once the children put the sweat meats in to their mouths and begin to taste them, the particular forms will easily dissolve themselves leaving only the taste of sugar and that this taste will be common to all the children though the forms through which they obtain it are quite different from one another.

ganesh drawing

“Similarly our religion recognises that forms of God are necessary and that the forms lose their significance when the Godhead in them begins to be realised.

It is only by constant practice of worshipping the formful God that one attains competence to contemplate on God who transcends all forms”.

From the book ‘Golden Sayings’,1969 publication by Sri Jnanananda Grantha Prakasana Samiti, Thenkarai, Madurai District.

Gandharvas in the Vedas!


Gandharvas in Mamallapuram sculptures, Tamil Nadu

Research Paper No.1803; Date: 16th April 2015

Written by London swaminathan

Uploaded from London at 10-55 am

Summary of the Article

1.Gandharvas were the dominant community in the Indus/Sarasvati valley civilization 2.They were well versed in music and dance 3. They were in charge of Soma plants and Soma juice production 4.Indus valley had other communities and sects like modern day Hinduism. They had fights and peaceful existence with them 5.Ramayana and Mahabharata give lot of information about Gandharva territories (Indus/Sarasvati valley) 6.Now we know the full significance of the filter like emblem found in most of the Indus seals. Those seals belong to the Gandharvas. Other seals belong to other sects of the Indus valley 7.The dancer statue of Indus valley belongs to the Gandharvas 8.Scholars who were misled by the Aryan Dravidian racist theory failed to understand the multi-cultural, multi ethnic fabric of the Indus/Sarsvati valley. It was NOT a homogenous community.

I have a strong suspicion that the Indus valley Civilization was a Gandharva Civilization or dominated by the Gandharvas who lived along with other sects. I have already written two posts showing the link between the civilization and the Gandharvas:

Haha and Huhu: Famous Celestial Musicians, Posted on 27 October 2014

Indus Valley Cities in Ramayana, posted on 18 December 2012

Gandharvas were celestial musicians and their marriages were love marriages. Of the eight types of marriages mentioned in Manu Smrti and oldest Tamil book Tolkappiam, love marriage is called Gandharva type. Indus Valley people probably led a free life like the Gandharvas. The famous dancing statue stands as a proof for this.

Here are more references from the Vedas which also prove that they were popular during Vedic times which nearly coincides with the Indus valley period according to latest accepted date for the Rig Veda (1700 BCE):

Indus Seal2 002

Soma filter in front of the animal in Indus seals

1.Consorts of Gandharvas were called Apsarasses.

2.In the later Samhitas Gandharvas forms a distinct class by the side of gods, Fathers and Asuras (AV 11-5-2; TS 7-8-25-2) (Like in today’s India they might have co-existed with others such as Asuras, Devas, Humans in the Indus Valley)

3.Their number is fixed as 27 in some Yajus texts and even said to be 6333 in the Atharva Veda (11-5-2)

4.Rig Veda has only few references: in books 2 and 7, while in book 8 it occurs twice.

5.In one place they are shown hostile to Indra (but I will treat it as an insignificant fact. Indra was hostile to every one: Brahma, Vishnu, Siva, several Vedic seers such as Agastya, Gautama, Krishna, Vedic Brahmins Trisiras, Vrtra etc Since Indra is a title like King, we would never know which Indra did what).

6.Gandharvas were associated with Sky or higher areas. (Probably they lived in hills and mountains or they came from higher areas).

7.He is a measurer of space (RV 10-139-5).He is found in the fathomless space of  air (8-66-5).He stands erect on the vault of heaven(RV 10-123-7)

8.He is the lover on whom the Apsaras smiles (RV 10-123-5).His abode is heaven(AV 2-2-1-2) and the blessed live with them (AV 4-34-3)

9.They are connected with celestial light. He is brought into relation with the sun- the golden winged bird), the messenger of Varuna.

10.He is further connected with rainbow in one hymns(RV 10-1-23). In post Vedic literature, one of the names of the mirage is ‘’City of Gandharva’’.

11.He is connected with Sun bird, Sun Steed, 27 stars, particularly Rohini Star. (Rohini’s closeness to moon is in many mythological stories. Tamils and north Indians celebrated marriages on Rohini star day).


Kinnara in Thailand Museum (aasociates of Gandharvas)

12.Gandharva is associated with Soma.He guards the place of Soma and protects the race of the Gods (RV 9-83-4;9-85-12;9-113-3). Through Gandharva’s mouth Gods drink Soma (AV 7-73-3)The Maitrayani Samhita says that Gandharvas kept Soma for the Gods ((3-8-10)

(My comments: INDUS VALLEY AND SOMA CULT– The mysterious figure in a lot of Indus seals is interpreted as a Soma rasa filter. These hymns linking Gandharvas with the Devas confirm my view that the Gandharvas were the dominating people of the Indus valley. Others might have co-existed with them. When I say Gandharvas, it was a tribe who identified themselves with the heavenly Gandharvas; they need NOT be actual Gandharvas of the heaven).

13.Gandharvas knows plants(AV 4-41). Soma was stolen by Gandharva Visvavasu, but was brought back.

  1. Gandharvas are fond of females (AB 1-27;TS 6-1-6-5,MS 3-7-3); Gandharvas in the waters (RV 10-10-4; RV 9-86-36;AV 2-2-3; 4-37-12)
  1. Gandharvas are connected with Hindu weddings: The unmarried maiden is said to belong to Gandharvas as well as to Soma and Agni( RV 10-85-40 and 41)
  1. Gandharvas’ physical appearance: They are wind haired (RV 3-38-6) and have brilliant weapons (RV 10-123-7). The Atharva Veda is more definite (4-37-8-6-1ff). Here they are said to be shaggy and to have half animal forms, being in many ways antagonistic to men. Elsewhere they are spoken of as handsome (SB13-4-3-7). The RV mentions that Gandharvas wears a fragrant (surabhi) garment (10-123-7), while in the Atharvaveda (12-1-23) the odour (gandha) of the earth is said to have given rise to the Gandharvas.

(Source: A Cultural Index to Vedic Literature by N N Bhattacharya with my comments)

soma filter

Soma filter on Indus seals

Gandharva Desa = Indus Valley

17.Varahamihira’s Brhat Samhita adds:–

Gandharva desa seems to be the original name (Ramayana 7-101-11) of Gandhara which is extended from Kabul Valley to Taxila (Takshasila) and comprised the Rawalpindi and Peshawar districts in Pakistan. Varahamihira mentioned two towns of Gandhara viz. Takshasila and Puskalavati (modern Charsadda) situated to the east and west respectively of the Indus River ( Souce:-Brhat Samhita translated into English by Prof.Ramakrishna Bhat)

Mahabharata and Puranas on Gandharvas

18.Mahabharata says that Shantanu’s elder son Chitangada was killed by a Gandharva by the same name on the banks of River Sarasvati. In another episode Arjuna fought with the Gandharvas and released Duryodhana who was earlier captured by them.

Mahabharata says about a 12 year long drought in the Sarasvati River area and Brahmins all forgot the Vedas during that period. Others migrated to different areas and those Brahmins are called Sarasvats. Son of Dadhichi only remained there and taught the Vedas to the seers when they returned to Sarasvati basin. His name was Sarasvata. (This shows that there was an exodus from Sarasvati River (Indus Valley Civilization area) at one time. Probably that was the reason for empty Indus cities).

19.Gandharvas’ names have the word CHITRA more often. If we are able to decipher this word in the Indus script we can make a breakthrough in deciphering the script.

19.Since Gandharvas are said to live in the sky and their main job was to prepare Soma juice for the Gods, we can assume that they lived in mountains where Soma plant was grown. Vedas always say everything in a secret language (in the sky= high mountains, preparing juice for Gods= bringing soma for Yajnas)

soma filter 2

The mysterious emblem infront of the animal is the Vedic device to extract Soma juice

  1. Later Puranas gave different accounts: Vishnu Purana says that they were born from Brahma’s nose. Chitraratha was the chief of Gandharvas. The cities of the Gandharvas are often referred to as being very splendid (probably they mean Cities of Indus valley). The Vishnu Purana has a legend of the Gandharvas fighting with the Nagas, whose dominions they seized and whose treasures they plundered. Nagas sent Narmada to Purukutsa (Vishnu in disguise)) who was led by Narmada to Gandharvas. Purukutsa destroyed them. This shows that they extended their sway up to Narmada River at one time and Purukutsa defeated them. Purukutsa may be one of the kings of rival groups of Indus Valley.

There is more scope for research into GANDHARVAS.

Pictures are used from different sites;thanks