Upnishad :


The Upanishads are Hindu scriptures that constitute the core teachings of Vedant. They do not belong to any particular period of Sanskrut literature. The oldest such as the Brhadaranyaka and Chandogya Upanishads date to the late Brahman period (around the middle of the first millennium BCE) while the latest were composed in the medieval and early modern period. The Upanishads realize monist ideas, some of which were hinted at in the earlier texts, and they have exerted an important influence on the rest of Hindu and Indian philosophy, and are considered one of the 100 Most Influential Books Ever Written.


Upnishads are a part of Ved's which are divided in 2 parts Karm-kand and Jnana-kand. The latter is also called Ved's or the upnishads which deal with the knowledge of realities of life.


Purans :


The Purans are a group of important Hindu religious texts notably consisting of narratives of the history of the Universe from creation to destruction, genealogies of the kings, heroes, sages, and demigods, and descriptions of Hindu cosmology, philosophy, and geography. Purans usually give prominence to a particular deity and most use an abundance of religious and philosophical concepts. They are usually written in the form of stories related by one person to another.


Ved Vyas the narrator of the Mahabharat is traditionally considered the compiler of the all 18 Puranas.


The truth of Ved's are told in Purans, in a symbolic way in the form of various stories of incantations of gods, devotees of god, saints and kings and good and evil, it also shows the conflict between devtas, gods and asuras (demons).


Shastra :


Sastra is a Sanskrut term used to denote rules in a general sense. The word is generally used as a suffix in the context of technical or specialized knowledge in a defined area of practice.


Example - Vastu Shastra (architectural science), Shilp Shastra (science of sculpture) and Arth Shastra (political science). In essence, the shastra is the knowledge which is based on principles that are held to be timeless.


Sutra :


Brahmins became divided into various Sakhas or branches, based on the adoption of different Ved's and different readings and interpretations of Ved's. Sects or schools for different denominations of the same Ved's were formed, under the leadership of distinguished teachers among Brahmins. The teachings of these distinguished rishis are called sutras. Every Ved has its own sutra.


The sutras that deal with social, moral and legal precepts are called dharma sutras, whereas those sutras that deal with ceremonials are called Srauta sutras and domestic rituals are called gruhya sutras. Sutras are generally written in prose or in mixed prose and verse. These sutras are based on divine Ved's and are manmade and hence are called Smritis, meaning "recollected or remembered."


The Dharma Sutra of Shukla Yajur Ved is Shankkhalikita.

Gautam Rishi was the most ancient sage of all Brahmin law givers. He was quoted by Baudhayan and belonged to Sam Ved School. Gautam's teachings are called Gautam sutra or Gautam smriti.

Gautam Rishi was also the author of Dharm-sutra known as Gautam Dharm sutra. It is in fact the earliest Dharm Sutra. It contains 28 chapters with 1000 aphorisms. Almost every aspect of the observances of Hindu dharma - including the rules for the four Ashram's, the forty sanskars, the four varnas, kingly duties, the punishments for various offences, the obsequies for the dead, do's and don'ts of food consumption, the dharmas of women, the rules for Praayaschitta (atonement for sins), and the rules of succession of property. In this sense Gautam's Dharm Shastra may perhaps be considered the oldest law book of the world.


Shruti and Smriti :


Sruti in Sanskrut means hearing or listening and Smriti means that which is remembered.


Smrities also talk about creation, various gods, duties of kings, politics, system of justice, etc. There are parts that talk about casts and stages of life, the code of conduct, the righteous way of living, knowledge and so on.


It is a body of literature that addresses the entire spectrum of life. Smrties are said to be eighteen. Of these the Manu-smriti, the code of Manu is the most famous. Some of the other famous Smriti are those of Yajnavalkya, Parashar and Gautam Rishi.


Manu smiti :


Manu Smriti also known as code of law is the most famous among the law books of India. It is considered to be one of the earliest books.


Samhita :


Samhita in Sanskrut means "joined" or "collected" it may refer to the basic text of each of the Ved's specifically, these texts with Vedic chant. In simple words the original text of the Ved is known as the Samhita.


Example - Gher and Samhita, Charak Samhita, Kashyap Samhita, Ashtavakra Samhita, Bhrigu Samhita, Yajnavalkya Samhita, Brahma Samhita, Garg Samhita, Dev Samhita.


Ved :


The Ved means knowledge. It is large body of texts originating in Ancient India. They form the oldest layer of Sanskrut literature and the oldest sacred texts of Hinduism.


The class of "Vedic texts" is aggregated around the five canonical Samhitas or Ved's proper (turiya), of which three (traya) are related to the performance of yajna (sacrifice) in historical (Iron Age) Vedic religion.


Upved :


UpVed's are additions to the Ved's. Gandharv Ved, Dhanur Ved, Ayur Ved and Arth Shastra are Upved's. They are also highly revered and are looked upon as authentic sources of knowledge.


Ayur Ved is Upved of Rig Ved authored by Brahma and twin Gods called' Aswinis' and Dhanwantari.


Dhanur Ved is Upved of Yajur Ved by Visvamitra. Vishvamitra was taught Dhanur Ved by Brahma and Lord Shiv.


Gandharv Ved is Upved of Sama Ved by Sage Bharat who was well versed in music and dance. Gandharv Ved involVed the traditions of Sangeet (music) started in Sam Ved.


Arth Shastra is Upved of Atharv Ved. Arth Shastra includes Science of Polity (a particular form or system of government).


Jati (Caste System) :


Ashram is the stage of life and there are four stages of life everyone passes through. Varna is translated as caste. It is the classification according to the inner disposition of a person. Broadly speaking a mind has three dispositions - Satva, Rajas and Tamas. These three components make up the mind.


Satva is purity, clarity, contemplativeness, transparency, etc. Rajas predominate with activity, ambition, desire, etc. and Tamas predominates mind with dullness, inactivity, lack of motivation, etc.


These 3 are present in every person and vary from person to person. At a given time one of them may be predominant.


The four casts Brahman, Kshitray, Vaishya and Shudra are classified according to these 3 combinations of inner disposition.


Satva predominates and is followed by rajas and tamas (satva-rajas-tamas). A person with Satva predominance would be contemplative and with pious mind that is conductive to learning, teaching, worshipping and praying. He would be spiritual person and hence in the Vedic times this sort of person was classified as Brahmin.
Rajas predominates and is followed by satva and tamas (rajas-satva-tamas) and hence the person is active. Rajas is followed by satva and hence the activity is likely to be selfless. He is responsible and sensitive to the needs of others and feels responsible to the fulfill them. Kshatriya is a leader practicing and protecting dharma and leading the society.
Rajas predominate and is followed by tamas and satva (rajas-tamas-satva) and hence the person is active but followed by tamas so the activity is likely to be self-centered so, the person is called Vaishya belonging to trading or merchant class.
Tamas predominates here followed by rajas and tamas (tamas-rajas-satva) and hence the person lacks motivation and requires guidance this sort of person is called Shudra.

A person's action and the path that he walks on make him a Brahmin, kshatriya, vaishya or shudra.


The Vedic society recognized and organized the obtaining variations in the people. The functions performed by all four casts are required for the successful completion of any endeavor. These four functions are taking place in our bodies also, the head is the thinking and knowing faculty, the Brahman, the arms are organs of activity and protection, kshatriya, the stomach receives, digests and distributes, vaishya. The lets support entire body and take it from one place o another, shudra.


A part of body cannot be said to be superior to the other because the contribution of all the organs is required for the body to function. There is harmony in the body because all th components perform their roles. There is unity in diversity. The spirit of co-operation unites all the organs.


The Vedic society was organized around the principle of co-operation and not competition among different members. The cast system was required for the functioning of the society - people to think,, learn and teach; to lead and protect others; to produce and distribute, and to provide services. This is how society was organized in Vedic times.


The Ved's teach that it is not what a person does but the way he does is important. The scriptures further teach that it is not competition but it is co-operation that is conductive for inner growth and happiness of person.


The division of caste is based on inner disposition and not on birth. How ever the inner disposition is subjective and there is no way of measuring or determining that disposition. In order to judge that birth is accepted as the closest criterion. The principle of the law of karma is involVed in this determination.


A person is born in a given family, in a environment in keeping with his past karma. A shudra is born as that because that is the appropriate place according to his karma and he will have the disposition of a shudra. Since we do not have a way to judge the inner disposition because it is subjective, an objective criterion has to be accepted. The marriage in the same caste takes place as there is probability of greater compatibility.


Dharma and Karma :


Dharm is known as a correct way of living which is described in Ved's and many other ancient religious books.


Karma means action it can be good or even bad. But, in true sense Karm means walking on the correct path as described in the ancient religious books. The theory of karma also states that what ever a person does either good or bad he will receive the same in return by nature (law).


There are many things written about how to live life but according to Ved Vyas "paropkarya puniyai papai parpidnam" which means doing good to some one is punya and harassing some one or doing bad to some one is paap.


Karma has more importance then Dharma because it is always easy to preach or show a correct path but to walk on the path of Dharma is always difficult and is considered as a test of human character.


To make the matter simpler "just be good and do good" this is good karma.


Swarg and Nark (heaven and hell) :


Swarg (heaven) :


According to ancient books swarg is a place where a person enjoys the fruits of his good deeds that he has done. A person is said to be in swarg till his balance of good deeds is not finished and after his account of good deeds gets finished a person has to again take birth.


Nark (hell) :


A person who does bad deeds goes to a place called nark where he is tortured according to the bad things he has done to other people and after he has suffered the consciences of the sufferings that he has given to others he again takes birth.


The concept of swarg and nark (heaven and hell) can be said that it is all here on earth. A family or a person who is walking on the path of Dharma and who is happy, united and lives a satisfied life in what ever they have are said to be in swarg.


A family or a person inspite of having everything who is walking on path of Adharma (doing wrong things) and has fights in family, differences, who is unhappy, etc. is said to be in hell.


Nature and God :


Nature and God (Brahma, Vishnu and Shiv)

As H + O2 (H2O) makes water same way due to a process of nature a body is formed and the work of god (brahma) is to put in it soul (atma) that is to give life.


Bhoomi (Earth), Jal (Water), Agni (Fire), Vayu (Air) and Aakash (Space) are the 5 elements of Nature it is believed in Hinduism that a human body is made of these 5 elements and by cremating the body it is believed that the body finally gets back to original basics which is Nature.


Whenever there is any change in environment (nature) its effect can be seen on body example during winter a person can catch cold and in hot summer a person can get sunstroke.


Moreover when a person is in company of a bad person his thoughts and action becomes bad and when person is in company of a good person his thoughts and action becomes good.


Hence, we can observe that body and soul are two different identities. Nature creates body and God (Brahma) puts soul in the body.


Every life on this planet whether good or bad has a purpose and that is the reason why it is created. In general the purpose of life is to attain God realization while doing good in the world but specifically if a person wants to know his/her purpose of life then meditation is the only way no person can tell you your purpose of life as its only you who has to find it out.


The destination of every journey is self-realization and in his journey comes many questions which are like locks and meditation is the key to open these locks when a person opens these locks he/she comes to know himself/herself and experiences God and understands the purpose of his/her life.


It's your life and it's your journey, saints can guide you and show you the path but finally it's only you who has to walk on it and the secret to make your life a wonderful experience is to know your specific purpose and when you come to know it you put in all your efforts to complete it in a useful way to the entire mankind with grace (grace means the exercise of love, kindness, mercy, favor; disposition to benefit or serve another; favor bestowed or privilege conferred).


Moksh (salvation) :


Moksh means release or to set free from taking birth again and again.


Life and death is an on going process due to the law of nature. The reason why a person takes birth and dies is because a person's body is part of nature and soul is a part of god. A human being or any other living thing is not complete nature or god and hence what all is not complete has to get destroyed in the end.


When a person gets complete is when he/she is free from his/her worldly desires and that's when he/she gets complete and attains Moksh (salvation).


The path of Moksh (salvation) can be found from Ved's, various spiritual books, guru, meditation, etc.


Every journey that starts has an end and the end of a person journey is moksh through self-realization and this no one can give you as it is only you who has to earn it by walking on the path of dharma.


A person who plays games with people, lies, cheats and does many other bad deeds no matter how many times he goes to a temple and prays he cannot get god or moksh as he is not walking on the path of dharma.


No matter how tough it get to walk on the path of truth a person should always walk on the path of what is right because in long run the right is always rewarded.


Many things are written about moksh and how to attain it but according to me a person should walk on the right path as described in Dharma and do daily prayers and meditation. When a person walks on the path of Karma and does good deeds he attains moksh automatically.


A person can have Moksh even when he is alive that is when a person is free from all desires and wishes he is said to have attained Moksh.


Guru :


Guru is a person who gives knowledge it is not necessary that only a saint can be a guru even parents can be guru as they teach their children's, any person who give true knowledge which enlightens a person is Guru.


Karma-kand :


Karma-kand instructs about various rituals, various codes of conduct and how to make our life worshipful, prayerful. It teaches a way of life based on responsibly, a sense of gratitude, sensitivity about one's place in universe and the grace that is enjoyed. It is a beautiful way of life that Ved's teach us.


Trishul :


The word 'Trishul' is derived from the Sanskrut words, 'Tri' meaning three and 'Shul' meaning a spiked weapon. Indian mythology has it that this three edged spiked weapon was a powerful and all pervasive weapon of Lord Shiv and other Goddesses.


It was effectively used to ward off evil. The 'Trishul' as a weapon has been used ever since then to symbolize the victory of truth and righteousness over evil. According to mythology, surviving the onslaught of the Trishul is impossible.