Name nArAyaNa नारायण : A truer understanding

Calling shrI viSNu instead as “nArAyaNa” is a serious disrespect, even if borne out of ignorance, towards shrI viSNu: Narayana is a proper name of shrI sUrya, a Vedic god. Narayana as an epithet of shrI viSNu, no problems, but as a proper name itself — is a huge denigration of both shrI viSNu and Vedic Dharma.


nAra means waters, also means woman, mother.
And AyaNa : let us just say, it means “refuge”.
Indeed, we are not talking about “Samudra” (the Father) here, instead we are talking about Apah, nAra, Mothers’ expanse.

Who is the first born of Mother? In Shaiva tradition it is gaNesha, and equivalently in Vedic it is shri agni, also called “apAma-napAta” i.e. waters’ child.

Surya is the highest deity in the span of shri agni the aSTa-vasu and therefore understood as the very first manifestation of Creation from Mother’s womb of Infinity. The first God that we can understand in terms of forms and worship accordingly. The overlord, as well as the guide, of all Creation.

shri viSNu, a “composite God” like shri agni, has a still far greater scope (pervading virtually everything within it) than even shri agni, and therefore He obviously “contains” Surya also within Himself (in the infinite unbroken continuity of His being).
In this way He can assume any of the various deities’ names as His adjectives. This is not the same as calling His proper name as something which is a proper name of some other deity.

However, the avatAra who can indeed take Narayana as His proper name is the Avatara of Lord who comes in the Surya-mode of shri viSNu.

And that would be, shri rAma. Ever heard of “rAmAyaNa”? The sacred book that is the refuge of all mortals? Ramayana is Narayana.

Does Rama-Narayana ring a bell? yes?
Does Krishna-Narayana ring a bell? No?

If we try go deeper into the famed “nara, nArAyaNa, hari, kriSNa” found in the purANa-s, by comparing with the mahA-mantra “hare kriSNa hare kriSNa..” we find that hari and kriSNa are common to both listings.

nara is nothing but the divine human inflated within us. So we are left with the word nArAyaNa being same as the name rAma of the mahA-mantra.

shri rAma – the superhero of rAmAyaNa, when exhausted in the war against rAvaNa, was advised to worship shri sUrya (in Aditya stotram) in order to regain strength by tapping into His very own source (sUrya).

But do I mean then that shri rAma was an incarnation of sUrya deva, not of shri viSNu?

No. karNa in the mahAbhArata was a manifestation of sUrya. But when we talk about avatAra, we say: “shri rAma was viSNu’s avatAra in the mode of sUrya.” We can, otherwise, find many similarities between karNa and shri rAma. But karNa wasn’t an avatAra. People in the anga-pradesha even to this day remember the rule of karNa as fondly as the rest of Hindus remember the rAma-rAjya.


rAma nAma and nArAyaNa nAma:

Many Hindus cultivate a habit of using the rAma nAma frequently, such as by greeting each other using the nAma (“Jai shri rAma”, etc). The secret behind this is no secret at all: we do it so that the nAma is on our lips for one final time again when we are about to die.

RAma is the shortest path to what Vedanta knows as “moksha”. I equated rAma nAma to nArAyaNa earlier in this thread. Notice the “rA” sound common to both (same that occurs in surya who is bhArata-bhAratI).

So, yes, we are not talking about finite entities here at all. We are talking strictly about the “Infinites”, the “its” here.

Read the following carefully to understand this:

Let me explain the idea using the material analogy (a valid method). Let us then talk about the material space (bhaga-AkAsha) that we are surrounded with. How do we characterise this space?

Clearly, bhaga-AkAsha is attribute less. Yet we say, “here we have so and so length, so and so width, and so and so depth”. Thus, we still are able to talk about the infinite in terms of “length”, “width”, and “height” which are very much finites. This is known as understanding the infinite using the language of finite.

In surya who is bhArata-bhAratI, the bhArata-component is an aMsha of Sri Indra, while the bhAratI-component (a mighty Devi as well) is an aMsha of Narayana.

In this way, to the Vedic Rsis all knowledge was expressed in terms of the aindra (Vedic Sanskrit is called Aindra): Indra classifies the finites by “divide-and-rule”, but also makes out the infinites using the Aindra reception (also known as “inducing”, “induction” etc – these words are rooted in Indu and Indra).

To come back to the original analogy, what do the Aindra description of bhaga-AkAsha (material space) using length, width and depth (there could be actually many more such finites such as position, momentum, energy, etc) tell us?

This description by the three finites tells us about the existence of three Infinites within the space. What are their names?


Let us now come out of the analogy. The point I tried to demonstrate here was that: “there are more than one Infinite”. There are more than one States of what Vedanta calls “mOkSa”. And Narayana is the deity, the “it”, who is the closest such state. Narayana is therefore also the first deity of this class encountered by our specially talented ancestors, the Rsis, when they were on their “straightest path”, when they toiled hard to pave the way forward for humanity.

The names nara, nArAyaNa, hari and krishNa – spell out a very important formula (though still not the whole of the sanAtana-truth), and all these four names are seen on an equal footing, yet they are different from each other: nara is all the finite worlds combined, whereas the three others are three different Infinites, three different “its”.

I hope I made myself clear here.


On the intellectual plane, let me point out that the Rsis nara, nArAyaNa, hari and krishNa belonged to Satyuga (ref. MahAbhArata). In satayuga shri viSNu doesn’t incarnate: there is no need for it.

So these four were Rsis who specialised in four very important modes of shri viSNu. This is how these names today are quoted more in the context of Vaishnavism. Though, these four names, and the deities behind them, can in a still valid way appear in Shaiva or any other Dharmika paradigm as well. Thus, for example, we see Swamy Satya-narayana’s vigraha (in the ancient and important satya-narayana temple in Annavaram, Andhra Pradesh), though still considered on some kind of equivalence with shri rAma (who is believed to be the kshetra-pAlaka of the said temple), is also traditionally considered as “belonging” to all the three paradigms (also called deities): Shiva, Vishnu and BrahmA.

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Rig veda 

RV [10-121.10]

Prajapati! thou only comprehendest all these created things, and none beside thee.
Grant us our hearts’ desire when we invoke thee: may we have store of riches in possession.

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“Hindu” comes from “Indu” which stands for Soma PavamAna (Soma juice).

RV 8.48.3 (Devata: Soma, Rsi: Kanva)

अपा॑म । सोम॑म् । अ॒मृताः॑ । अ॒भू॒म॒ । अग॑न्म । ज्योतिः॑ । अवि॑दाम । दे॒वान् । किम् । नू॒नम् । अ॒स्मान् । कृ॒ण॒व॒त् । अरा॑ति । किम् । ऊँ॒ इति॑ । धू॒र्तिः । अ॒मृ॒त॒ । मर्त्य॑स्य ॥

apāma | somam | amṛtāḥ | abhūma | aganma | jyotiḥ | avidāma | devān | kim | nūnam | asmān | kṛṇavat | arāti | kim | oṃ iti | dhūrtiḥ | amṛta | martyasya

meaning: “We have drunk Soma (Indu), become Immortal, of Light, and discovered the Gods. Now what harm mortals’ trickery could possibly do to us (the Immortals)?”

This rica from the Veda is very definitive of Āstika ideals. So, whether you use Hindu or Indu, Hindustan or India, doesnt matter.

Soma PavamAna is known as Indu, e.g.

RV 09.113.11 (Devata: Soma PavmAna, Rsi: Kashyapa)

यत्र॑ । आ॒न॒न्दाः । च॒ । मोदाः॑ । च॒ । मुदः॑ । प्र॒ऽमुदः॑ । आस॑ते । काम॑स्य । यत्र॑ । आ॒प्ताः । कामाः॑ । तत्र॑ । माम् । अ॒मृत॑म् । कृ॒धि॒ । इन्द्रा॑य । इ॒न्दो॒ इति॑ । परि॑ । स्र॒व॒ ॥

yatra | ānandāḥ | ca | modāḥ | ca | mudaḥ | pra-mudaḥ | āsate | kāmasya | yatra | āptāḥ | kāmāḥ | tatra | mām | amṛtam | kṛdhi | indrāya | indo iti | pari | srava

Make me immortal in that realm (Prithvi in this pada) where happiness and transports, where Joys and felicities combine, and longing wishes are fulfilled. Flow, Indu, flow for Indra’s sake.

From “Indu” to “Hindu” there is hardly any journey, to warrant an overreaction. Indian/ Indu/ Bharatiya/ Hindu/ Hindustan/ Indus all mean the same thing in Vedic Sanskrit.


Sindhu originally means : Ocean, Sea. SaptaSindhu (HaptaHindu) is the region near Ocean where Seven rivers (used to) end their journey. This region is known as Sindh. SaptaSindhavah (plural) means those seven rivers meeting the ocean, in the Sindh region, the leading most of whom is (was) Sarasvati (river).

Sindhu also denotes the “Fourth” realm (see here) which equates it to the word Samudra of the Veda.

Sindhu only later came to be identified with a river when Sarasvati started to flow into that (needs more research though).

We also have HinduKush/ HinduKo west of Indus, and not the east of it.


If we see that the Greek branch of IE is older than Avestan (the latest to migrate out of India), then “Indu” is original just as “Hindu”.


1. Hindu stands for original Indu, notwithstanding the SaptaSindhu-HaptaHindu identity.

2. In Veda, Indu means “Soma flow”/ “Soma-river” and is related to “Indra” who intakes (as in receiving from indriya-s) the Soma through the tongue “which is Agni”. Agni (the janus faced god) has these aspects: bhArata, bhArati. Agni is explicitly called bhArata in Veda. So in the Vedic understanding, bhArat and Indu are on the same level. Again, bhArata means “Indra-like” (like Arjuna is addressed as bhArata by Krishna). bhArati, on the other hand, is like goddess IlA. So in the mystical sense bhArata is the kingdom of Indra, whereas ilA-vrata is the spiritual loka hovering directly over it.

Indu in Aryan Languages

1) Indigo (English) : Greek indikon (ινδικόν), Roman indicum

Literally, “of/ from India”. Also, indikon (and English indigo) is the Greek word for “dye”.

That is, “dye from India”.

On the other hand, indigo as a color is a prominent (sixth) color of Indradhanuhsa. Indra Himself is related to six (as the leader of the six loka-s of dyAvAprithvi), and also originally the lord of the sixth chakra (now it is Soma/ Indu, in Tantra). This is the mystical meaning behind indigo the color, which is the sixth color among the seven of the Indradhanusha light-spectrum. Interestingly, in the modern yoga practices the 6th chakra is shown in indigo color.

2) Indigenous : Latin indu+gena

Indu people (gena/jana) are the indigenous people. That is the psychological reason why the westerners christened many aboriginal races as Indians (Red Indians, West Indians, Indonesians, etc). “The Homeland”/ “Motherland” is subconsciously attached with India.

3) Induction : Latin inducere/ induco : induce, lead in, bring in.

Indra = Indu + ra

Indra drinking indu denotes the receiving of spiritual intuition. “Induction” derives from that.

This has to be seen distinct from Greek [endos], which means “within” and not “leading into”.

4) Industry :

industry (n.)

late 15c., “cleverness, skill,” from Old French industrie “activity; aptitude” (14c.) or directly from Latinindustria “diligence, activity, zeal,” fem. of industrius “industrious, diligent,” used as a noun, from early Latin indostruus “diligent,” from indu “in, within” + stem of struere “to build” (see structure (n.)). Sense of “diligence, effort” is from 1530s; meaning “trade or manufacture” first recorded 1560s; that of “systematic work” is 1610s.

The word is reflective of the Indus (Vedic) civilisation of India which was, as is commonly known, innovations and industry driven. “Indus Civilisation” can be seen thus as “Industrial Civilisation”.

So, we have plenty there on the IE side of the story. Closer to home, I don’t see ancients were so dumb as to equate Sindh with the whole of India. Again, HinduKush/ HinduKo is more along the lines of indiko discussed earlier, and geographically as well doesn’t sit well with Sindh idea. Sindh is still there, as well as the Sindhis.

And India of Indra and Indu is also, still here.

[Advanced readings: In RgVeda Sindhu (Ocean, Samudra) has a mystical meaning more than anything. So, even though the Ocean there is called Sindhu mahAsAgar, we very well know Sindhu means Samudra in general in even Hindi. The best picture imo (in RV thought) is this: Indu (Soma) originates from Samudra (Sindhu) and finally pours into Samudra (Sindhu) as well. Indeed, there are two Samudra-s (one above, one below) in Vedic thought. Sarasvati, too, is called in one place “sindhu-mAtA” (bahuvrihi) meaning: having Samudra (Sindhu) as Her Origin (Mother), which all sounds to be too counter-intuitive if understood in very literal terms. To continue with the Indu flow picture, when it enters into mystical dyAvAprithvi realm through the efforts of Indra, it branches out in six/seven streams each one of which finally merges into the Samudra.]

Indian-Hindu-Āstika :: Political:Cultural:Religious

The “directory”, apparently, is:

Indian > Hindu > Āstika

Here I am taking the words according to their present meaning (so, “Hindu” is cultural, and “Indian” is political, even though both derive from the same word Indu).

Or, let us say:


Today it has already suffered ellipsis and we have:


And tomorrow, devoid of the cultural assets, the bindi and the sari, it will be:


This can be the western route. By that time, to counterbalance that, there will be no India left.

This is based on pure observation. The story on this end of spectrum is going on like this:





Already we are into the phase in India where Hindu word has been orchestrated.

It is already into the last phase where the idea of India is in peril. Foreigners and Indian intellectuals (not to forget the immigrants)have joined a chorus: “there never was an India” (la-la-..background music).

Yet, pick any Indian among the billions of them, and run a narco on him/her, you will hear Vedic rica-s straight coming one after one from the mouth.

*But, again, that one is from the third innermost, obsolete, layer i.e. Āstika.

[The idea “India” received a major setback during the mass exodus of thousands of “educated Indians” especially during the nineties, the consequences of which will be most readily visible in the next twenty-five years.]

“Indu” went under some other morphisms too. One example is “Bindu”.

Bindu: drop, point, ajna chakra, soma.

Yet another is: “Bindi” which women folk put on their foreheads (again, the 3rd eye, ajna chakra).

That Bindu and Bindi are sound morphisms becomes evident from their non-derivation from any sandhi or other rules in Sanskrit.

“Indu” is obviously a less understood word and its significance is not grasped fully even by pundits of Hindu Dharma. So, I will not be surprised if it still takes many decades before Hindus themselves are able to understand and visualise this word Hindu/ Indu properly in its full light.

Ultimately, however, I do see the point of having the freedom to choose ones own name, instead of relying on terms given by others no matter however much Vedic in origin or not.

So, the focal point is this word, “Indu”. Why should we accept it?

Why should we, of all Devatā-s in our pantheon, relate ourselves, for the denomination, to Indra only?

Where is the evidence, if there at all, that our Rishis called themselves as Indu-s?

However, we know that we have always used BhArata and BhArati for self-identity.

But, who is this BhArata and this BhArati?

Well, there have been illustrious kings, chakravartins, going by that name. There was a Vedic tribe, a very prominent one, also of name BhArata.

But ultimately it is our spirituality, our worldview, that gives us a meaningful insight into the meaning of these two words.

Though I have touched on this earlier, briefly, I will rather avoid dwelling on it right now. Except, emphasising on that there is a point where BhArata meets BhArati. That point is to be understood (again, IMO) as Indu.

In Indu, both BhArata and BhArati are simultaneously present.

Then, it might be asked here: why the hell we don’t remember all this?

Because, this was a real, long, long time ago.

Another hint that I will leave here is, the whole world was dominated and in a way controlled by Aryan armies from India. India, therefore, when seen through the eyes of the world, was an icon, murthy, of Lord Indra.

[Advanced Readings:

bhArata and bhAratī —

Let us think of these as mere words (so, Sanskrit is the key, again).

Both these words mean: “of bharata” (Hindi: भरत का).

Mostly, bhArata = son of bharata

bhAratī = daughter of bharata

This much is clear as day. But, now, just imagine,

Who (ka?) is that divine power that could be the Father of Mother BhArati Herself?

PrajApati. It is PrajApati.

So the next immediate question: is PrajApati called bharata anywhere? Or, who are the deities that are called bharata?


Satpatha BrAhmaNa 1.8.14

‘Far, far famed is this Agni of the Bharata (tribe),’–the Bharata, doubtless, is Pragâpati, for he sustains (bhar) this entire (universe);–‘that his great light shineth brightly, as the sun(Surya),’–that is, ‘that, like the sun(Surya), his great light shines brightly;’

My further opinion on this;

Agni and Prajāpati together form the Whole. It is as if the coming together of Finite and Infinite. When we start Yagya, we first become inflated and one with Agni, and then invoke Prajapati to unite with us (this is somewhere in some BrAhmaNa). This is still only a very generic understanding. Actually, just as a rectangular field can be divided by any line running across it, similarly, Rsis used to dissect the Map Of Reality in as many ways as possible, so in that sense we can say, the division into Agni and PrajApati is one such (and of particular interest to us in the present context).

Now let us have a look at this pada of RgVeda [9.5.9] regarding Indu (Soma) PavamAna,

“Indu is Indra, tawny Steer; PavamAna is PrajApati.”

So “Indu PavamAna” is purposely broken into Indu and PavamAna to showcase the duality inherent in Indu.

One part is, clearly, on the side of Infinite Godhead, the PrajApati, while the other is on the side of the Finite Godhead, Indra.

But, instead of themselves fully entering inside the DNA of Indu (ain’t possible )- PrajApati and Indra elect their representations. Indra selects bhArata from this side and PrajApati sends BhArati from His side. So that’s why I said in an earlier post that BhArata is “Indra-like”.

But I also said that BhArati is ILA-like, but here I write She is a representation of PrajApati, how? Actually, it is in the same manner as “bhArata is Indra-like, yet also a representation of Agni”. It isn’t clear at all, I guess, but let it be, for now.

So this kind of, “logically”, illustrates that “Indu is bhArata-bhArati”.]


1) Indu doesn’t mean “Moon” originally, neither does soma. Indu is infact more related to Surya Deva. “Moon” is a symbol of “mind-body” and thus is the last receiver of the nectar, here on the mortal Earth, and hence soma can be seen on this level only symbolically as Moon. Indu, however, is the level of soma not on Earth but on Swarga. So connecting Indu with Moon is not OK.

2) PrajApati has undergone some change after the Vedic age, but still, as this wiki-page amply shows, He still remained a very formidable Deity, and could well be on a resurgence today. The wiki-page also suggests the relationship between PrajApati and the geographical map of India.

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Understanding The Indu-Saraswati Seals

The Indu-Saraswati seals of archaeological find provide a very keen insight, as also some hard evidence, into the deep Vedic roots of the (H)indu Civilization. The connection between the two: Vedic literature, and archaeological find: is apparently indeed natural, but it could be asked here- why, then, the connection has not been immediately evident to everyone? The answer to this question has more to do with a bad approach to the problem, than the “purported” mal-intent of some to distort an otherwise purely academic discourse.

The problem with the approach has been that it misconstrued the Vedic corpus as a “given” and an accessible resource, while the seals (and the other finds) were “meant” to be something inscrutable, mysterious that needed decoding. The reality, however, turns out to be just the opposite:

The seals- simple creations of artisans- are actually the “given”, whereas it is the Vedic texts that needed the decoding.

This problem is more a home-grown one than a conspiracy theory pointing to some foreign stake-holders:
Hindus have failed to understand the Vedic thought in its true light, and under the spell of relatively recent paradigms such as Vedanta continue to see the Veda as merely something of a ritual-book, karma-kANda. The Vedic Sanskrit (in which the Veda is written) is far richer than the Classical Sanskrit (in which the Vedanta is expressed), and this fact alone- if not anything else- should have alerted them that the quality of content should therefore also be far richer in the Vedic than in the post Vedic.

Anyway, enough on this already; here we will be discussing some of the depictions in the seals alongside an understanding from the Vedic view-point. For the conceptual framework- not much is explained here- the reader is advised to consult other posts of this blog-site.

ADITI and The Four Realms (lokA)

This depiction relates to the Four Realms of Aditi, and the three-fold nature of each Realm is represented by three concentric circles in each of the quadrants. The circles (realms), naturally, also have contact points with the adjacent realms. “Asat” is the state of these realms when they are isolated from each other, whereas “Sat” is the state when these realms communicate with each other via the four contact points between them.

This depiction is a secondary variation of the first one. In addition to the four realms, there is one more shown now in the center, indicative of the “Immortal” consciousness which is placed center of all the realms and their influences.

This seal focuses only on one realm, and as before there are three concentric circles, and also the fourth making a boundary giving effect of emanating Sun-rays. The circles therefore can also be seen as some kind of solar deities, also called Aditya-s, or the children of Aditi.

This one is still another variation of the Four Realms, idealized to the extreme by the use of plain straight lines. This symbol is known as Swastika and is the most sacred  (certainly more than the AUM) symbol of Hindus.

This one is yet another idealized variation of Realms. The circles are not completely abandoned (not even in the present day Swastika) and are depicted as simple dots.

In a related symbology, this seal depicts Vedic God Yama having buffalo-horns (buffalo is His vAhana) for His crown. This goes against the earlier speculations about the figure being that of Shiva/ Rudra, though very few know about the close proximity of the two Vedic Gods Yama and Rudra. As a corroborative we can see four animals surrounding the kingly God: a Tiger (on His left bottom), an Elephant (on His left top), a Rhino (on right top) and a Buffalo (on right bottom). These four animals denote (in the postVedic mythology) the “contact points” between the four realms. Moreover, their sequencing is also right: Tiger is opposite Buffalo (Yama’s own place), and Elephant is opposite Rhino.

copyright: J M Kenoyer

copyright: J M Kenoyer

Finally, this one, as also discussed earlier in this post, depicts the Vedic God Vayu as an exotic imaginary animal, who is “made up” from an artistic synthesis of many different animals (yes, horse included), receiving Soma juice (soma pavamAna) from an equally exotic “Soma-juice-blender”-cum-“Sacrificial-altar” where the acts of sacrifice (Vedic Yagna) and the receiving of Soma-juice are simultaneously performed and effected. This is also how the communication lines are established between the two (of the four) realms: Heaven (Dyo) and Earth (Prithvi).

Bolsena Italy 700 BCE

Now let us look at the above pendant. Looks like yet another Vedic depiction of Swastika and Aditi’s Realms ? Well, only, this is from Bolsena, Italy  ( Etruscan, 700 BC at the farthest). The Indu-Saraswati seals discussed here, however, belong to 3000-2000 BC window. So, the pendant borrows from the Indu-Saraswati which is the source– if we go by the time-scales involved, by the richness and the variety evident of the original design as discussed earlier, and also by how this goes right to the heart and crux of the Vedic thought; finally, the stickiness and exact similarity between the two confirms a faithful transfer of religio-spiritual beliefs (normally associated with actual migrations/invasions of people).

There is more to say, no doubt, but let us leave it here for now.


1. RgVeda: A Summary

2. Conversations & Stories

3. RgVeda: The Real Meaning


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Hinduism's biggest God

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brahman, brahma, brahmA

In this post the meaning of brahmanब्रह्मन्-brahmaब्रह्म-brahmAब्रह्मा is discussed and explained, along-with the other derived and related words found in Hindu texts.

“brahma”ब्रह्म is often used something like an attribute (as in brahma-loka, brahma-vidya, brahma-gyAna, etc), in other words, brahma is adjective-like. Analogy is: rudra which means “angry” but still is a Vedic god’s name. Or, daksha means “skilled” but still many times a god’s name (theonym). Similarly, brahma means “creating”, but still…what?

1) So we come to the occurrences of brahma in RigVeda. We are told that the prAtipadika प्रातिपदिक (nominal stem) bráhman = prayer/ creation, and the prAtipadika brahmán = a type of ritvija priest.

2) So in their nominative forms प्रथमा विभक्ति, we have bráhma for the “prayer”, and (brahmá turned into) brahmA for the latter, i.e. the “priest”.

3) brahma in this way, is the unnamed (because it has never been used as a theonym in RV) trinity god of Veda (“the-you-know-who”, the 12th aditya) with the other mighty two as mentioned in the above: rudra and daksha.

4) From the Rig-Veda, brahma-daksha-rudra are the core aspects of brahmA-Vishnu-Shiva, respectively. Of course this is neutrally speaking, not with respect to any sectarian viewpoint (e.g., the Vaishnava pov: “brahmA came from Vishnu, not from brahma, and Vishnu himself being brahma”, and so on, etc).


To further illustrate on the meaning of brahman-brahma-brahmA, we can use analogy.

Say, in Atman-Atma-AtmA, the first word “Atman” आत्मन् is a prAtipadika प्रातिपदिक (nominal stem), and both “Atma” आत्म and “AtmA” आत्मा are two different words (the nominative प्रथमा विभक्ति) formed from the same prAtipadika, Atman आत्मन् .

It gets easier if we use some imagination (and theory) to understand their meaning:
Let us think of Átman, and Atmán. Now, both are the same Atman but with accents on different a’s. It is not difficult to see how the nominative Átma comes from Átman, and the nominative Atmá comes from Atmán.

Of course this we will not find in the grammar-treatises on classical Sanskrit (i.e., post Vedic), but have to construct (and in fact has been already) this picture about accents (note: accents went extinct in classical Sanskrit).

So, by the time of  classical Sanskrit, words like Atmá gave way to words like AtmA. There are many such examples: amman-amma/ammi-ammA, amban(?)-amba/ambi-ambA, etc. Though we dont have any clue anymore, this should be the case with words such as rudra, daksha etc also.

Now, what all this says about the meaning part?

When the accented letter is nearer to the first letter of the word, we can expect the meaning “essence” of something. Whereas when the accented letter is nearer to the last letter of the word, we can expect the meaning “envelope” of something.(As we are told, “the first can be like abstract noun, and the second could be like agent noun.”)

Thus amba अम्ब means “mother” which is the essence of a lady’s relationship with her child. But “ambA” अम्बा means “someone who possesses motherhood” (apart from being other things).

So one can call his mother “ammi” अम्मी but any lady (including one’s own mother) can be called “ammA” अम्मा.


The suffix “Na” ण is also interesting. And what we get to see in RV is that bráhmaNa (from bráhma) and brahmáNa (from brahmá) are also seemingly present.

“Na” suffix makes a change in the meaning, which looks like:-

1) whereas bráhma = supreme-creativity/ creative, bráhmaNa = hymn/ prayer (a product of supreme-creativity). So when bráhma became brahma, bráhmaNa became brAhmaNa, which we know as “brAhmaNa-texts”. The varna brAhmaNa also comes from this, and should mean “a creative-man-product stamped out of Rsis’ varna-ashrama”.

2) whereas brahmá = a possessor of supreme-creativity, brahmáNa = a kind of mystic (a manifestation of supreme-creativity into man). And when (in fact in the RV itself) brahmá became brahmA (the divine possessor of brahma), brahmáNa becomes brahmANa (a brahma-possessor mystic or priest).



Rig 06.052.003
किम् । अ॒ङ्ग । त्वा॒ । ब्रह्म॑णः । सो॒म॒ । गो॒पाम् । किम् । अ॒ङ्ग । त्वा॒ । आ॒हुः॒ । अ॒भि॒श॒स्ति॒ऽपाम् । नः॒ ।
किम् । अ॒ङ्ग । नः॒ । प॒श्य॒सि॒ । नि॒द्यमा॑नान् । ब्र॒ह्म॒ऽद्विषे॑ । तपु॑षिम् । हे॒तिम् । अ॒स्य॒ ॥
kim | aṅga | tvā | bráhmaṇaḥ | soma | gopām | kim | aṅga | tvā | āhuḥ | abhiśasti-pām | naḥ |
kim | aṅga | naḥ | paśyasi | nidyamānān | bráhma-dviṣe | tapuṣim | hetim | asya
Why then, O Soma, do they call thee keeper of prayer? Why then thou not guard our devotion from reproaches?
Why then beholdest thou how men revile us? Cast thy hot dart at him who hates devotion.

Rig 02.001.002

तव॑ । अ॒ग्ने॒ । हो॒त्रम् । तव॑ । पो॒त्रम् । ऋ॒त्विय॑म् । तव॑ । ने॒ष्ट्रम् । त्वम् । अ॒ग्नित् । ऋ॒त॒ऽय॒तः ।
तव॑ । प्र॒ऽशा॒स्त्रम् । त्वम् । अ॒ध्व॒रि॒ऽय॒सि॒ । ब्र॒ह्मा । च॒ । असि॑ । गृ॒ठऽप॑तिः । च॒ । नः॒ । दमे॑ ॥
tava | agne | hotram | tava | potram | ṛtviyam | tava | neṣṭram | tvam | agnit | ṛta-yataḥ | tava | pra-śāstram | tvam | adhvari-yasi | brahmā | ca | asi | gṛṭha-patiḥ | ca | naḥ | dame
Thine is the Herald’s task and Cleanser’s duly timed; Leader art thou, and Kindler for the pious
Thou art Director, thou the ministering Priest: thou art the Brahmā (ritvija priest), Lord and Master in our home. (Griffith)

1) brahman ब्रह्मन् is a root, and should not be used.
2) The root brahman ब्रह्मन् has two nominative words: brahma ब्रह्म and brahmā ब्रह्मा.
3) brahma ब्रह्म = creation, devotion, creative, the unnamed deity of RgVeda, the 12th Aditya, the central deity of advaita-vedānta.
4) brahmā ब्रह्मा = a ritvija (vedic) priest, one of the trinity gods in Hinduism, the deity (brahmā) whose core aspect is brahma ब्रह्म.
5) brāhmaNa ब्राह्मण = prayer, prayer-book, any creative product, brāhmaNa varNa.
6) brahmāNa ब्रह्माण (?) = a mystic.

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PanchaJana पञ्चजन and The Five Yoga-s

From Vedanta वेदान्त generally one comes to know about the four Yoga-s योग as spiritual disciplines that can be practiced together or independent of each other.  Vedanta, however, has only made a collection of the already existing Yoga-s: bhakti भक्तिkarma कर्मrAja राज, and jnana ज्ञान.

Firstly, Vedanta did not create them.

Secondly, even then, one Yoga is missed out: the Yoga of “Artistic pursuits” (for the lack of better word).

The only place where these are talked about (and indeed discovered) is in the Veda, where the Five Yoga-s are called “The Five Tribes” (PanchJana/ पञ्चजन), where, the evolved mankind is thought of as “components” made from five kind of people: The Athlete (<Karma), The Lover (<Bhakti), The Artist, The Thinker (<Raja), and the Sage (<Jnana). Every Arya (Hindu) is invited to fully evolve himself using all these modes, together.

This is aligned to the way by which we can implement Dharma धर्म into the practical/ day-to-day aspects of our lives, something that holds further promise for our progress.

¿”The Yoga of Artistic pursuits”? / “A FIFTH Yoga?”

Veda doesn’t use too many labels, it only talks in terms of its Devatā-s. One can say, Veda is the BigBang consciousness where all knowledge, all awareness, reside in a unitary language.
We can call this “fifth” Yoga, and what comes to my mind, the “Vrata Yogaव्रत योग. Vrata means here “starting something with a resolve of completing it”, i.e., “the part” containing the “whole” by the way of harmony. Indeed, Art fits the bill, but there is surely a greater scope.

These five Yoga-s, or the modes, are gifts from the Deva-s of Swarga स्वर्ग: Sūrya सूर्य (Jnana), Indra इन्द्र (raja), Mitra मित्र (Vrata), Marut मरुत (Bhakti), and AśviniKumar अश्विनीकुमार (Karma). Swarga has two ends (like any other Lōka): one is presided over by Sūrya and the other by AsviniKumar.
One can say, Surya is very much related to Indra, and Asvins (AsviniKumar) very much related to Marut.

PanchJana and Pandava-s

In Mahabharata, Kunti (wife of king Pāndu) wanted the very best of humans as her children, with the use of the vardāna (boon) given to her by Rsi Durvāsā. She (along with the other queen, Mādri) was blessed with “five sons” known as “Pāndava-s”.

Now, the thing with the Mahabharata is that here we get to see the total range, from the very divine to the vilest; purest of knowledge, mixed with even the worst of ignorance. And a lot of grey shades, to add on to this.

Rsi Durvāsā’s vardāna was perfect; Mitra, Indra, Maruta and AsviniKumar — gave their amśa-s (parts) to take birth (as manifestation only, and not Avatāra) as: Yudhisthira, Arjun, Bhim, and Nakul – Sahdeva, respectively.

Of course, people of the Mahabharata age, due to some ignorance (no Satyuga, remember) called Yudhisthira to be from Dharma, and Bhima from Pavan, since Mitra was as good as forgotten by that time, and Marut also got converged into a separate Vedic Deva, Vayu. (confusing mostly because Lord Hanuman, a Janus-God, was known to be from both Marut and Pavan/ Vayu). On the other hand, Dharma as an idea had become the prerogative and authority of the king (means, no separate Judiciary), by that time, and indeed, in Veda it is Mitra who is the ruler of Swarga (not Indra), so Yudhisthira was conceived to be “the best ruler of men.” {however, Dharma in general relates to all the five modes together, and Marut in particular}

Mahabharata is rich, and complex in its history telling. Now, in the “Pāndava-s”, AsviniKumar manifested as a twin (since Asvins are twins). So it seems to break the notion of PanchJana.

Though, actually not, the real fifth in this fivesome was KarNa, the son of Surya from Kunti.

Mahabharata is mind-boggling, yes?

The Pāndava-s became the “five modes” to support progress by connecting to the divine in Krishna. One may ask, however, how come Krishna was an Avatār, but the Pāndava-s were not?

One can only say: if, for example, Vishnu incarnates as the Indra mode, then it is Avatāra; equally, and equivalently, the same thing can be said as: if Indra incarnates in the Vishnu mode then it is an Avatāra. Else, the manifestation could well turn out be an out-of-harmony power, Asura (not a pejorative in the Veda; it is like “Titan” may be).


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