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The Upanishads

  1. Jan 18, 2004 #1
    What's the story with the Upanishads?

    From what most people tell me:
    The Vedas were written first.
    The Vedas consist of knowledge passed directly from God(s) to sages during meditation as ideas (not with words, AKA Sruti).
    Later, the Upanishads were written by Yogis (not through divine intervention, AKA Smriti) because the Vedas were so difficult to understand.
    The Upanishads were written by the wise as the keys to understanding the Vedas.
    However, this weekend, I was talking to an "expert" on Hindu Mythology, history and language, and he told me that the Upanishads were part of the Vedas.
    He said that the Upanishads were knowledge given to the Sages by the God(s) along with the Vedas.
    I read on a site that the Vedas are broken up into 4 sections each.
    From the site:
    "There are four Vedas, each consisting of four parts. The primary portion is the mantra or hymn section (samhita). To this are appended ritualistic teachings (brahmana) and theological sections (aranyaka). Finally philosophical sections (upanishads) are included. The hymn sections are the oldest. The others were added at a later date and each explains some aspect of the hymns or follows one line of interpreting them."

    However, the Upanishads are known as the Vedanta, doesn't that mean the end of the Vedas?

    I also read that there are only 108 Upanishads remaining (though there were more).

    Were SOME Upanishads included in the Vedas and handed down by God(s) and SOME written later by Yogis?
    Of the 108 left, are they all from the Vedas, and some from the Yogis?
    Are all the Upanishads from the Vedas intact?

    Does anyone know who wrote the Upanishads that are not from the Vedas?

    Are the Upanishads that are not in the Vedas considered Sruti or Smriti?

    Was the Samhita written first, then all the other stuff (like the Upanishads) written later and added to it?

    What's the story?

  2. jcsd
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