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Removing The Sheen From Buddhism
Correction to the following statement (but the rest of what I wrote about Kamakshi Kovil is correct, as I've confirmed it since):

[quote name='Husky' date='03 November 2011 - 09:48 PM' timestamp='1320336641' post='113583']LS and I think LT are also supposed to be given here, and the two Rishis thereof have their Marks at the Kovil as well.[/quote]While LS and I think LT too were indeed given in Kanchi, it was at a different sacred site in Kanchi than the Kamakshi Kovil.

(And it is at that Other Site said Rishis of the stotras left their Mark.)

Romanian/Romani -

I've not read your recent posts above (or your recent PM *), but from your copying out my recent post I can conclude you want to resume the same topic again.

[color="#0000FF"]You've already created a monologuing thread on what appears to be specifically that topic - well, going by its thread title of "Vedanta Monopolytheism" or something.[/color] I suggest you move posts from here, as they don't belong in this thread but in that one instead. People will dialogue there if they want/are interested.

(* And again: I don't want you to send me further PMs, thanks.)
Not really about Buddhism. But the following is related to the post on the previous page concerning Indology on Panini/Grammar. Not about Panini anymore, but the process is sort of the same.

Elst wrote at http://koenraadelst.blogspot.com/2010/07...-yoke.html


Patañjali wrote when theism was at a low ebb. In modern self-presentations of Hinduism, you would not know that it was ever anything else than devotional-theistic. At some point, [color="#0000FF"]a theistic coup d’état has eclipsed the godless schools of thought and written them out of the record. The Gita is a blatant instance, with Krishna imposing his presence as object of devotion on chapters named after (and giving an otherwise fair summary of) godless philosophies like Sankhya.[/color] Some have argued that the YS started with a godless core and had theistic elements added later on, to the point that Hindus came to call it Sesvara Sankhya, i.e. “Sankhya-with-God”. This is plausible, but the reconstruction of a text’s editorial history is notoriously susceptible to speculative excess, so let us cautiously focus on another and unmistakably operative method of theistic incorporation, viz. leaving the text intact but reinterpreting key terms.

Thus, “Isvara” is defined merely as “a distinct purusa untouched by afflictions, actions, fruitions or their residue” in YS 1:24, but has been assigned the exclusive meaning of “God/Shiva”, nowadays assumed in the expression “Isvarapranidhana” (YS 1:23, 2:1, 2:32, 2:45). It is on the basis of little else than this expression’s repeated appearance that the YS is classified among the theistic systems.


Concerning the above matter. The following was written by a native Hindu, in the early 90s I think:

Quote:Pre-classical Samkhya


The concepts of the Purusha, of the Prakriti, of the Gunas, of the evolution of different categories, of life being a vale of sorrows, of the doctrine of Samsara or repeated births and deaths, of gaining freedom from Samsara through spiritual striving, etc. are familiar to the Upanishads, may be with some differences of meaning, and they find a place in the classical Samkhya. The Mundaka and the Katha Upanishads, if closely studied, will be found to have much Samkhyan affinities. The Shvetashvatara Upanishad gives clear evidence of the existence of a pre-classical Samkhya that is not distinguishable from Vedantic ideals. In that Upanishad we get for the first time the expression Prakriti, which is also called Maya--a term which in the earlier literatures was known as Brahman, Akshara, Avyakta, and Mahan-atma. The theory of the three Gunas, which bind the Purusha, is adumbrated in this Upanishad in the passage IV.5, where it speaks of the "Aja" ('female unborn'), red, white and black in colour, and producing offspring resembling her. The dualism of Purusha and Prakriti is clearly visible, but unlike in the classical Samkhya they are unified in Supreme Being, all-powerful, described as Isha or Deva. Prakriti is called His Yoni (source of creative power) and also as Devatma-shakti (the inherent Power of the Lord). It speaks in the same breath in contiguous passages about Samkhya and Vedanta in expressions like samkhya-yogadhigamyam (the Highest Truth that can be attained through Samkhya and Yoga) and vedante prachoditam paramam guhyam (the Supreme Truth inculcated in the Vedanta). The Upanishad also mentions the name of Kapila, the reputed author of the Samkhya philosophy, although that word is interpreted in commentaries as the 'golden-coloured one', the Hiranyagarbha.

Gita Samkhya

The existence of a pre-classical Samkhya, which is both theistic and devotional and therefore indistinguishable from Vedanta, is most abundantly clear from the Mahabharata from its most important sections, the Bhagavad Gita, and the Mokshadharma section of the Shantiparva. Ever since the time of Shankaracharya, the Bhagavad-Gita has gained recognition as one of the most important Vedantic texts--in fact as one of the three foundational Vedantic texts (Prasthanatraya). But critical scholars of the text today claim it also to be a pre-classical Samkhyan text. It is interesting to note that Lord Krishna terms the teaching he gives as Samkhya in several chapters. Thus he calls his teaching as Samkhya in five places (cf. II.39; III.3; V.4-5; XIII.24; and XVIII.13) while he refers to himself in a solitary place as Vedantakrit or author of the Vedanta (cf. XV.15).


The theory of the unaffected Atman discussed in the second chapter, which is one of the basic teachings of the Gita, is described by the Lord as Samkhya. The doctrine of the three Gunas and the various effects through which they are observed, is perhaps discussed in greater detail here than in any Samkhyan text proper. The distinction between the Purusha and the Prakriti or Kshetragnya and Kshetra, is described exactly as it is in the Samkhya texts. There is, however, one important difference. While in classical Samkhya, Prakriti is of the nature of the Gunas, the Gita describes the Gunas as both constituting Prakriti (Gunamayi), and as born of Prakriti (Prakritijan). It is the power of Ishwara (God).

The categories of Prakriti are reduced to 8 in the Gita in place of 24. But all this is done with some basic and fundamental differences from the classical Samkhya, namely, that the Purusha and the Prakriti are the higher and the lower aspects of the Power of Purushottama (the Supreme Purusha), known jointly as the Prakriti, and that the lower Prakriti has power of creation only under the stimulation received from Purushottama, and that the Jiva or the higher Prakriti can gain release only by the grace of the Purushottama. Thus it is found that a pre-classical text like the Gita is cent per cent theistic and devotional.

Epic Samkhya of the Mahabharata

The Mokshadharma of the Shantiparva of the Mahabharata contains many details of what may be called pre-classical epic Samkhya, which is theistic but yet different from the Vedanta as also from the classical Samkhya. Bhishma refers to Samkhya as originated by Kapila, whom he calls an Adhyatma-Chintaka, the founder of a spiritual doctrine. Like the classical Samkhya it recognizes twenty-four categories of Prakriti, and the Purusha as the twenty-fifth, but it differs from the former in holding that there is no ultimacy in the multiplicity of the twenty-fifth as in the classical Samkhya. The Purusha, in association with Prakriti in the creative cycle, seems to be many. But in liberation, with the effacement of the bondage of Prakriti, the separateness of the Purusha is effaced and it becomes the one and only Purusha that exists in the nature of things. This version of Samkhya too is sometimes called Anishwara (without a God), but this is only in the sense that it does not have a twenty-sixth category called God entirely distinct from the twenty-fifth, as was recognized by the Yogins and the Gita-Samkhyans whose leanings are towards the Vedanta.


Another important respect in which the epic Samkhya as also the Gita differs from classical Samkhya is in that Prakriti in the former cannot be active without the prompting or will of the Purusha. The idea of a God is essential to them.


Classical Samkhya scrupulously excludes a God as a superfluous and inconvenient assumption in their way of thinking. Epic Samkhya, however, is entirely different from it, in that the will of the Purusha is necessary to make the Prakriti creative. But this Purusha of the epic Samkhya is not Ishwara, a God, as accepted in the Gita or in all schools of theism. Purusha, free from bondage of Prakriti, is Ishwara, but He becomes a limited centre of intelligence in bondage; He is therefore taken only as the 25th category and not as the twenty-sixth. This equivocal position of Ishwara in epic Samkhya is one of the steps towards the emergence of atheistic Samkhya of classical times.


[color="#800080"](From the section on the above's development into classical non-theistic Samkhya)[/color]

This tendency to downgrade the importance of scripture must have been responsible for the speculative theories of thinkers like Panchashikha and the final termination in atheism. But the Samkhya never rejected the Veda completely unlike the Buddhists and the Jains and so continued to be included among the Astika systems of thought. [...]
Was under the impression the author of the above (who knew Samskritam) had passed away.

Among the bits not present/not typed out in the above excerpt but which are (perhaps) also relevant - may perhaps include them in the future - are:

- the complete section on the development of classical (non-religious) Saamkhyam evolved from the pre-classical kind

- the subsequent discussion on how Hindus tried to later reclaim the "pre-classical theistic" SAmkhya from the "classical, non-theistic" view. (Not just with the SB. But all the way down the centuries.)

Anyway. The above at least goes toward explaining why Samkhya permeates various theistic Hindu paths - and hence, so does Yoga as its counterpart (the practise related to the Hindu cosmological view apparent from Samkhya). The following points are as recalled from a very recent perusal of a booklet (which was possibly/presumably meant as an introduction for kids?):

- The MBh version of Saamkhya as described above - including its view of the puruSha/ishwara - seems to be mirrored in the view of Kashmiri Shaivam, as it explains each pashu/jeeva as being 'Shiva himself, but in bondage of prakriti's evolution'*. While I think in the Shaivam of the Pashupatas and also Shaiva Siddhanta (?) Ishwara is considered unaffected by the evolution of Prakriti. (*Note: paraphrased from memory.)

- And though KS has 36 tattvas (consequently the same as in southern Shaivam of Kannada and Tamizh Hindus, while the Paashupatas apparently kept just the 25), this 36 seems to include the standard 25 of the MBh (which 25 has its own special place in several of these Hindu traditions as well).

Shaktam is of course related. And the presence of Sankhya in Vaishnavam speaks for itself.

- In the Shaivam of paashupata Hindus, Ishwara (who presides over sriShTi, sthiti and samhaaram) is described as in Nyaaya (?): as being the "efficient cause" but not the "material cause" of the Kosmos. While my understanding of Tamizh Shaiva Hindus' view - could be wrong - is that Shiva as Ishwara is considered both, which matches some other traditional Hindu views yet again.

Elst's statements (in this post's first quoteblock) sort of indicates/explains why indology and native parrots have been working to separate "Bhogindra" Patanjali from his traditional Hindu identification with Adishesha. IIRC the claim is that the Kashmiri Hindus just blindly accepted the identification from the Tamizh Hindus (Chidambaram is blamed as the source of this ... what's now dubbed as "mythmaking"). But even that claim admits to one thing at least: that learned Kashmiri Hindu scholars writing on Patanjali repeated his being the Bhogindra as a given. It was part of the same view of the same religion after all. And so the traditional Hindus of this view who still remain state no less.

Of course, in general and regardless of whether Patanjali is or isn't allowed to be identified with the Ananta, it is moreover necessary (and hence is part of the indological pattern) to turn Hindu claims to Patanjali of being a devout Hindu attached to Shiva into "actually, this was but later Hindu mythmaking", same as is done with the tradition regarding the Maheshwara Sutras of Panini. The one thing we *can't* have - after all - is that Patanjali and hence his Yogasutras (or Panini with his opening Shiva Sutras) being a .... what's that ... a "pagan" type character. Hindus can't have any theistic claims on Samkhya or even Yoga - it must all be declared originally "non-theist" or so at core (and BG too is demoted as seen at the Elst link above), or else it should be declared as a secular work un-influenced by any Hindu Divine inspiration (=as with Panini's grammar), or else declared Buddhist/Jain/etc "originally/in influence".

Else yoga can not be made into the practical "universal" system meant "even for alien non-religious persons too" (although having said that, why should alien non-theists be disallowed when alien anti-Hindus of christoislamic affiliation are allowed to dabble in and even claim yoga? Besides, aliens who don't even subscribe to the Hindu cosmological view set out by Samkhya will still do "yoga" <- a logic which I never did get, but hey).

But note how Yoga is now logically made to be At Least As Much alien non-religious persons' as it is theistic Hindus'.

Can watch indology divorce everything piecemeal from theistic Hindu religion (and in origins it was theistic - from the Vedam to the MBh at least).

If it can't all be donated to Buddhism/Jainism (before it can be declared as universal etc. from there), it will be dubbed "Not theistic originally, but was hijacked - 'coup d'etat' - by theistic Hindus *later*, so *actually*, theistic Hindus have no *real* claim on it". A la what was done to Panini and his Maheshwara Sutras (since dubbed the "so-called" Maheshwara Sutras).

The following comment at the Elst link does belong in this thread -

Quote:LV said...

Personally, I think Chip Harnranft's translation is the best. [color="#0000FF"]It rescues the YS from Vedantin and theistic misinterpretations and acknowledges the heavy Buddhist influence[/color]
<img src='http://www.india-forum.com/forums/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Big Grin' /> Just like that.

In a way it's strange to notice a similar metamorphosis happen as for Tiruvalluvar's Tirukkural - once considered Hindu literature (hence still recited by devout Hindoos), then turned secular Tamizh, now declared Other Indic - to Patanjali and his Yogasutras or Panini and his Grammar work. I don't know the present state of wackypedia, but somewhere this or last year the wacky page on either Patanjali or Yogasutras was still mostly devoted to how the Yogasutras was largely Buddhist/Jain in its view. You wouldn't know there was anything Hindu about the work from reading the page. And now that it's been declared there's nothing ("really") theistically Hindu about Yoga either - reiterated by Elst himself - the process of divorcing Yoga from "paganism" is quite complete.

So what's up for grabs next?

Or, approaching the question from the other end ("glass half-full/half-empty"): of what now remains, what are the things they will *never* get?

(Reinstated removed comments.)
ramana Wrote:Can you summarize Kumarila Bhatta's critique of Buddhism for us?

Purva mimamsa defines Dharma as -

वेदबोधितेष्टसाधनताको धर्मः यथा यागादिः |

Dharma is that which is described by the Vedas as the means for achieving the desirable; for example, sacrifices etc.

Pasting from a beautifully written Wiki article on Kumaril Bhatta. Here is the abstract. complete book is available here - http://books.google.dk/books/about/A_Hin...edir_esc=y

Kumaril Bhatta in critique of Bauddha mata Wrote:1. "Buddhist (or Jain) scripture could not be correct because it had several grammatical lapses." He specifically takes the Buddhist verse: ime samkhada dhamma sambhavanti sakarana akarana vinassanti (These phenomena arise when the cause is present and perish when the cause is absent). Thus he presents his argument:[6]

The scriptures of Buddhists and Jains are composed in overwhelmingly incorrect (asadhu) language, words of the Magadha or Dakshinatya languages, or even their dialects (tadopabhramsa). Therefore false compositions (asannibandhana), they cannot possibly be true knowledge (shastra) ... By contrast, the very form itself (the well-assembled language) of the Veda proves its authority to be independent and absolute.

This argument of Bhatta relies heavily on his idea that the meanings of each individual word should be complete for the sentence to have a meaning. It may be noted, that the Pali Canon was intentionally recorded in local dialects and not in languages germane only to the scholarly.

2. Every extant school held some scripture to be correct. In order to show that the Veda was the only correct scripture, Kumarila ingeniously said that "the absence of an author would safeguard the Veda against all reproach" (apaurusheya).[7] There was "no way to prove any of the contents of Buddhist scriptures directly as wrong in spirit...", unless one challenges the legitimacy and eternal nature of the scripture itself. It is well known that the Pali Canon was composed after the Buddha's parinirvana. Further, even if they were the Buddha's words, they were not eternal or unauthored like the Vedas.

3. The Sautrantika Buddhist school believed that the universe was momentary (kshanika). Kumarila said that this was absurd, given that the universe does not disappear every moment. No matter how small one would define the duration of a moment, one could divide the moment into infinitely further parts. Kumarila argues: "if the universe is does not exist between moments, then in which of these moments does it exist?" Because a moment could be infinitesimally small, Kumarila argued that the Buddhist was claiming that the universe was non-existent. This, in a lot of ways was consistent with his literal Sanskrit understanding of the word Shunya (literally 'zero'), found in the Pali Canon and well commented by several later Buddhists. It is noteworthy here, that the Pali Canon says that 'samsara' is characterized as 'anicca' (impermanent, not momentary). Further, the Mimamsic (and Vedantic) understanding of Shunya is inconsistent with the meaning as described in the Pali Canon.

4. The Determination of perception (pratyaksha pariccheda).[8] Kant's Critique of Pure Reason has a lot of similarities with this work, although they are not the same or even on the same subject matter.

Something similar to Kumaril Bhatta's second point is used by Islamists to rebutt other religions (abrahmic and non-abrahmic).

Here is one beautiful resource on Purva Mimamsa - http://www.mimamsa.org/articles/brief_introduction.html

One has to understand Mimansa, if one wishes to indulge in debate with abrahmics. This is one good starting point for purva-paksha.
Sorry Ramana, have a stream of posts that may render yours less visible because of it. Es tut mir leid, aber es muss sein.

First -

X-post from #208 of India/western Sociology thread, because the following is relevant to 2 posts up and subsequent posts.

Quote:The Tantra is regarded as a Shruti or Agama [...] It is thus classed with the Vedas. It is usually defined as "shrutishAkhAvisheShaH", a particular branch of the Vedas. This claim is strongly maintained not only by the later Tantras, but also by the earlier ones. One of the oldest Tantras available in manuscript, NS, holds that the Tantra is the culmination of the esoteric science of the vedAnta and the sAMkhya. In fact, it combines with the ultimate reality of Brahman or Shiva the validity of the world as an expression of His Shakti. The consort of Shiva therefore is first taught the vedAnta, then the 25 sAMkhyas [saamkhya categories], and after that the Shiva Tantra. P, which is an equally old tAntric text, says, 'The Tantra, first communicated by Shiva, came down through tradition. It is Agama with the characteristics of chandas (Vedas).'

The later Tantras reiterate the same claim. The K Tantra says (II. 140-41) that kuladharma is based on, and inspired by, the truth of the Vedas. In the same place, Shiva cites passages from the shruti in support of His doctrine. P2 and other Tantras cite vaidika-mahAvAkyas and mantras; and as mantras are a part of the Vedas, the M Tantra says that the Tantra is a part of the Vedas. The N Tantra calls the Tantra the fifth Veda, and kulAchAra the fifth Ashrama, which follows all the others. The MSM-tantra says that the disciple must be pure of soul and a knower of the Vedas. He who is devoid of vaidikakriyA is disqualified. The GT says that the tAntric sAdhaka must be a believer in the Vedas, ever attached to Brahman, living in Brahman and taking shelter with Brahman. The K Tantra says that there is no knowledge higher than that of the Vedas and no doctrine equal to the kaula.
Abbreviations are my doing.

(I'd apologise for the extreme length of each of these many posts, except that if I wrote in a string of brief predicates I suspect it wouldn't be much appreciated either.

I don't mean to speak "with authority" below, but no one else ever seems to speak about this at all. So I may as well complain on the matter as much as is reasonably within my ability.

Personally, I'd just read the blockquotes in this sequence of posts, or visit any links where no excerpts are given.)

These things are getting out of hand.


Quote:By admitting the plea on the Mahabodhi temple, the bench has taken a narrow view of the oceanic nature of native Indian tradition. In the 1920s itself, renowned archaeologist RP Chanda noted the Indus roots of Yogic tradition (possibly India’s most significant spiritual dimension), particularly the meditation forms that came to be associated with Bauddha and Jaina practice. He observed that the discoveries at Indus sites show that both traditions are indebted to the Indus civilisation for some of their cardinal ideas. Scholars now believe that what were later identified as distinct Hindu, Jaina and Bauddha spiritual streams, had common roots in the Indus civilisation.

Prince Siddhartha (6th century BC) said there had been many Buddhas before him; Buddhist theology has rich genealogies of past Buddhas and the previous lives of Sakya Muni. [...]

Though the topic touched on in the above quoteblock will come first, this set of posts is actually about multiple tangentially-related things that came to mind when reading the above. They're matters which have been gradually developing in the background over some time (and moving to the foreground):

- How the origin of other Indic religions is being shifted backwards in time. As one example: the *later* Buddhist invention of a sequence of Buddhas stretching backwards in time is now presented matter-of-factly as of Buddhism having always existed (in some form). Note that the above reference is to this Buddhist *theology* on previous Buddhas, which is not using "buddhas" in the general sense of the term but in a specific Bauddha sense.

- The origin of yoga and how it is shifted onto other Indic religions.

- Indeed, even Samkhya (until now still regarded as one of the 6 *Astika* schools, just as Yoga) is being similarly transferred.

- And as an inevitable consequence, encroachment on the Upanishads is on too: the most audible claims are being made on those particular Upanishads that clearly mention Yoga, Samkhya and/or concepts related to it (such as Samsara to Samadhi) etc.

- However, there were already preparations afoot for claiming all the Upanishads: that they are "not really Vedic" (not in their "thought"/ideas expressed), but as belonging to some backwards-projected independent ur-'Shramanic' religion, arguing that the Upanishads/Upanishadic thought had somehow "ended up" in Vedic religion. In this, the notion being constructed is that there were always 2 separate religions in India: Shramanism and Vedic religion* and that the former is what "actually" led to the Upanishads, and that the Upanishads therefore "rightfully" belong to the modern Shramanic religions (Jainism and Buddhism) which sprung from Shramanism.

To note, the claim is quite severe: that Upanishadic thought "actually, originally" belongs to the separate non-Vedic religion of "Shramanism" and that it is "therefore" the *Hindus* that would have "encroached" on it.

Indeed, in claiming this much, the fable has evolved further, to evict Vedic Religion as being the invader religion to the subcontinent and the newly invented Shramanism as the native religion.

(Further and more extreme spins place even Jainism and/or Buddhism as the eternally-existing (sanatana) Shramanic religions in India and this is then tied back: that one or both of these religions was behind the Upanishads.)

But the notion that a distinct non-Vedic Indic religion X ("Shramanism" with a capital S*) existed before or during Vedic religion appears to be a more recent consideration. So too that general shramanic practices and ideas "must be independent" of Vedic religion (i.e. of Hindus' religion) rather than always having been a part of it. And that what are regarded as the eventual classical Astika schools like Yoga and Samkhya were again influenced not by Vedic religion, but by "Shramanism" instead.

X appears to have been invented and placed into history just in order to take all elements tied to Yoga - incl. Samkhya usw (and inevitably even encroaching on the Upanishads) - away from Hindus' religion and donate it to an external point, so that it can be claimed that the existence of these things in Hindus' Vedic religion "must therefore be" borrowed from/influenced by X.

* Although, at times another word has been posited for this supposed religion/its adherents too.

Yet where is the evidence for this new additional independent religion X "Shramanism" that is to have overlapped in timeframe with the earliest known-/assigned period of Vedic religion? (I'm not even going to appeal to Occam's Razor. There are more straightforward arguments.)

Where is the evidence, when the ...early range of - or say "core" - Upanishads are part of the Vedas and follow on from the Aranyaka portions? They are *part* of the Vedic religion: constituting an aspect of Vedic thought, Vedic practice and Vedic life. And the Vedic corpus *shows its working* (derivation) on matters pertaining to what came to be viewed as independent "Yoga/Saa~Nkhya".

That is, if the requirement was to find proof of the Hindu evolution of ideas that would lead to Yoga and Samkhyan notions, it has always been there in Vedic texts (which texts include the itihasas - e.g. the MBh is very much about Vedic religious society. And ascetism among Vedic Hindus is rather familiar to the MBh. And not just restricted to ascetic Brahmanas: people in mainstream Hindu society were also seen progressing to ascetic tendencies not just in later stages of life - where elderly kings and queens are seen to withdraw as hermits into the forest, renouncing the comfortable life - but since ancient times many Hindu Yogis, Siddhas and Sadhus have been from all walks of Hindu life.)

Again: the Hindu texts show their working behind the evolution of the ideas. IIRC, some Hindus view the Vedas as theoretically consisting of 2 portions (though constituting one indivisible whole): 1. the Karma Kandam - which are the rituals, for the Gods, for (all life in) this world and for self-purification for the world Beyond as especially happens when the stipulated rituals are performed with [a degree of] renunciation of the fruits for oneself; and 2. the Gnyana Kandam portions (Aranyakas and Upanishads) which are more geared towards contemplating on and realising the (true nature of) Self w.r.t. Kosmos/Brahman/...<bla>. It's why the Gnyana Kandam portions are viewed as part of the "Vedanta" ([color="#0000FF"]edit:[/color] well the Upanishads, but they're said to sort of take the origins of their train of thought from the Aranyakas): the *end* of the Vedam, which implies there is all sorts of stuff that must be done first. Hindus don't skip the Vedic karmas and jump to vedanta (most of those who do that today tend to be new-ageists, the kind that sell "Vedanta" in the west). Usually Hindus tend to recite/perform/etc from all parts of it, though at some point in time, certain more extreme renunciate shramanic type of Vedic Hindus seemed to have eventually considered themselves self-purified to a full extent and felt it was time to renounce even karmas and start planning to no longer being part of ... "this world". [Or something. Which would explain the repeated question-marks about whether *complete* renunciation - not just of the phalam - was actually required or even justified or not. E.g. the Gita considers this question too.]

Anyway, my point was: there is a *natural* relation/logical 'relatedness' between the "Vedic (i.e. Hindu) religion" of the Vedic rituals and the Vedic Hindu religion of Hindu ascetism - i.e. *Hindu* shramanas (lower case s to indicate use in the plain sense of the word). They're both the Vedic religion. [An example: even the performance of the rites of the *Hindu* agamic and tantra texts are specifically described and understood as being internally-performed *Vedic* sacrifices (e.g. the temple is the Yagnyashala, or the flaming Shivalingam in the heart is the Vedic fire), thus mirroring internally within each Hindu the external Vedic sacrifices that are carried out by the Vedabrahmanas. And this internalisation of the Vedic rites seen in the Hindu agama and tantra texts - even when performed as dhyana - is already there in the Upanishads (actually it appears to be there in parts from the rest of the Vedam too: considering how some suktas/mantras/stuff seem to additionally be performed mentally as well, as dhyanam.)]

* And a general attitude of renunciation is part of the "Karmakanda" portion of the Vedam itself, even noticeable in the overall frugality of the lives of many a married Rishi, Vedabrahmana and other Vedic ascetic.

But it is precisely because the Upanishads are so ...footloose ascetic (shramanic, used in the plain sense of the word; as ascetism and renunciation is well-known in Vedic religion)

in both thought and implied lifestyle, and because these texts contain undeniable pointers to Yoga and Samkhya, that the Upanishad portions of the Vedam now Have To Be Encroached on as being part of (else influenced by) "the independent original Shramanic religion" that is being postulated.

How else can claims be made to sever the Upanishads from the Vedas/Vedic religion, than by presupposing a distinct and independent Shramanic ur-religion - which must by necessity be defined as being non-Vedic in origin? Because any admission of the converse would mark a return to what was the generally held status-quo until now: that the *known* Shramanic religions of history at some point found derivation in some manner from the pre-existing Vedic religion, and not from a distinct non-Vedic, un-Vedic ur-religion, existing *in contrast* to the Vedic religion (let alone the argument that the extant Shramanic religions existed always/"were sanatana", to be claimed using e.g. the later "Buddhist theology" of many *Buddhist* Buddhas, placed into remoter history in order to make Buddhism itself into an eternal religion, far predating the Gautama Buddha/the actual origin of Buddhism. IIRC, there was a time when Buddhism was so insane as to attempt to make out that the very Daoist God, the Jade Emperor of Daoist Heaven himself, was a Buddha. But then, it's not encumbent on Hindus to subscribe to Buddhist theology).

Actually the tendency among other Indic religions to at some point start perceiving themselves as "eternal religions" seems to parallel that other move: their *eventual* (late) decision to claim their chosen languages/languages of their liturgy as "eternal languages" much after seeing how Vedic Hindus' considered (Chandas) Samskritam to be eternal/divine (or something). [In this, Buddhism eventually latching onto Samskritam as their (note 2nd) choice for "eternal language of Buddhism" came only after they had already spent considerable time blasting I mean critiquing the Vedic Hindus and their Vedas and (attachment to) Samskritam.]

What comes hereafter is (cut 'n paste) examples of:

1. what others concerned thought before now

2. what other (pro-Buddhist, specifically *not* pro-Hindu) 'scholars' on Buddhism had to say as recently as 2001-2003 about Yoga and related ideas in Buddhism, and where the notion of multiple *Buddhist* Buddhas comes from (i.e. not merely any self-perfected beings, but particularly self-perfected beings that were ever specifically *Buddhist* in view and therefore 'proof' of Buddhism's sanatana-ness)

3. And the main point of the current slew of posts: how, since then, matters are being developed/history rewritten - including how Vedic religion is slowly being written out.

Returning to


(the original link above is available again, but if not, a copy is also at bharatabharati.wordpress.com/2012/03/02/mahabhodi-temple-sc-opens-temple-reclamation-door-sandhya-jain/)

Sandhya Jain wrote:

Quote:By admitting the plea on the Mahabodhi temple, the bench has taken a narrow view of the oceanic nature of native Indian tradition. In the 1920s itself, renowned archaeologist R.P. Chanda noted the Indus roots of Yogic tradition (possibly India’s most significant spiritual dimension), particularly the meditation forms that came to be associated with Bauddha and Jaina practice. He observed that the discoveries at Indus sites show that both traditions are indebted to the Indus civilization for some of their cardinal ideas. Scholars now believe that what were later identified as distinct Hindu, Jaina and Bauddha spiritual streams, had common roots in the Indus civilisation.

Prince Siddhartha (6th century BC) said there had been many Buddhas before him; Buddhist theology has rich genealogies of past Buddhas and the previous lives of Sakya Muni. [...]
The 2 paragraphs above are related in that they follow on. This choice of construction is important in intended meaning.

The notion is that Buddhism - or at least a precursor independent of the Vedic religion (the "religion of the Vedas", i.e. what is called the "Hindu" religion now) - goes back to the "beginning". Where the beginning here is at least as far as the IVC.

Moreover, there's no reason why the reference which Buddha is to have made to Buddhas before him ought to be taken in the (later) Buddhist theological sense: it admits to no more that self-perfected beings had existed before him (of whatever pre-existing Indic religion).

However the choice to bring in Buddhist theology of past Buddhas implies that Buddha was referring to self-perfected *Buddhists* before him. That is, that Buddhism existed forever. This is *late* Buddhist theology, forget having anything to do with fact.

1. koenraadelst.voiceofdharma.com/books/wiah/ch7.htm

Elst writes that Sandhya's father Girilal Jain wrote:

Quote:“Though not to the same extent as in the case of Sikhs, (…) neo-Buddhists and at least some Jains have come to regard themselves as non-Hindus. In reality, however, Buddhism and Jainism have been no more than movements within the larger body of Hinduism.”8

If that is to be disregarded as unclear or open to interpretation, the following is not.

Below is the Buddhist Dharmapala again - from some late part of the colonial period. He does not appear to contend that Buddhism predated the Upanishads (or the Gita) but the reverse, and that Buddhism's starting point was from (considering the ideas in) these Vedic materials. (Though some - core - Buddhist principles were set up in specific denial of certain affirmations made in Upanishadic thought, which does not make Buddhism a "progression" as much as a distinctive branching-off.)

Quote:Dharmapala went a step further and said that Buddhism went deeper into the mysteries of life than either the Gita or the Upanishads.

To underscore this point, Dharmapala quoted a well-known contemporary authority on comparative religions, Justice Telang of the Bombay High Court, to say that Buddhism had concepts, which had appeared in "less thorough-going manifestations" in the Upanishads and the Gita.

"The Upanishads, with the Gita and the Precepts of the Buddha, appear to be the successive embodiments of the spiritual thought of the age," Telang had said.

But it is understandably hard to deny chronology. (E.g. hard to deny that the Buddhist "anatman" was developed in particular rejection of the Upanishadic "atman". Formulation of anatman presupposes conceptualisation of atman - not in the mere formation of the word, but the whole conception which it sought to deny.)

2. Points of relevance/interest in Encarta 2002 on Buddha. Gives you an idea on what western and eastern perceived experts on Buddhism/Buddha believed about a decade ago (meanwhile a century ago, the western experts on Buddhism still insisted that Buddha/Buddhism opposed the ritualism of the Vedas rather than argue it was caste that the Buddha/Buddhism was opposed to):


Buddha (563?-483?bc), Indian philosopher and the founder of Buddhism


All the surviving accounts of Buddha's life were written many years after his death by idealizing followers rather than by objective historians.


Wandering as a mendicant over northern India, Buddha first investigated Hinduism. He took instruction from some famous Brahman teachers, but he found the Hindu caste system repellent and Hindu asceticism futile.


Not only did he establish a great new religion, but his revolt against Hindu hedonism, asceticism, extreme spiritualism, and the caste system deeply influenced Hinduism itself. His rejection of metaphysical speculation and his logical thinking introduced an important scientific strain heretofore lacking in Oriental thought.


Contributed By:

Wing-Tsit Chan

Microsoft® Encarta® Encyclopedia 2002. © 1993-2001 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

- "revolt against Hindu ascetism" contains admission not only of some sort of ascetism in pre-existing Hindu religion, but also alludes to Buddha's choice of a middle way (hence his rejection of "Hindu hedonism" too - generally explained as a reference to Hindus' pursuit of happiness even in life/this world).

- "rejection of metaphysical speculation" is a reference to Buddhism's rejection of certain concepts that the Upanishadic line of thought took for granted/as a given and for the inquiry itself

- "his logical thinking introduced an important scientific strain heretofore lacking in Oriental thought" is a bit of a stretch. VaisheShika is (or at least was, not so long ago) apparently dated to 600 BCE and Nyaya to the 6th century BCE too, and I've not heard either of these accused of being strangers to Logical thinking. But when Buddhism is credited as originating so much else, why not Logic too, nah.




Originating as a monastic movement within the dominant Brahman tradition of the day, Buddhism quickly developed in a distinctive direction.


No complete biography of the Buddha was compiled until centuries after his death; only fragmentary accounts of his life are found in the earliest sources.


Renouncing earthly attachments, he embarked on a quest for peace and enlightenment, seeking release from the cycle of rebirths. For the next few years he practiced Yoga and adopted a life of radical asceticism.

Eventually he gave up this approach as fruitless and instead adopted a middle path between the life of indulgence and that of self-denial.

B2 Anatman

Buddhism analyzes human existence as made up of five aggregates or “bundles” (skandhas): the material body, feelings, perceptions, predispositions or karmic tendencies, and consciousness. A person is only a temporary combination of these aggregates, which are subject to continual change. No one remains the same for any two consecutive moments. Buddhists deny that the aggregates individually or in combination may be considered a permanent, independently existing self or soul (atman). Indeed, they regard it as a mistake to conceive of any lasting unity behind the elements that constitute an individual. The Buddha held that belief in such a self results in egoism, craving, and hence in suffering. Thus he taught the doctrine of anatman, or the denial of a permanent soul. He felt that all existence is characterized by the three marks of anatman (no soul), anitya (impermanence), and dukkha (suffering). The doctrine of anatman made it necessary for the Buddha to reinterpret the Indian idea of repeated rebirth in the cycle of phenomenal existence known as samsara.

C Conflict and New Groupings

As Buddhism developed in its early years, conflicting interpretations of the master’s teachings appeared, resulting in the traditional 18 schools of Buddhist thought. As a group, these schools eventually came to be considered too conservative and literal minded in their attachment to the master’s message. Among them, Theravada was charged with being too individualistic and insufficiently concerned with the needs of the laity. Such dissatisfaction led a liberal wing of the sangha to begin to break away from the rest of the monks at the second council in 383 bc.

The Mahasanghikas speculated that the human Buddha was but an apparition of the transcendental Buddha.

While the more conservative monks continued to honor the Buddha as a perfectly enlightened human teacher, the liberal Mahasanghikas developed a new concept. They considered the Buddha an eternal, omnipresent, transcendental being. They speculated that the human Buddha was but an apparition of the transcendental Buddha that was created for the benefit of humankind. In this understanding of the Buddha nature, Mahasanghika thought is something of a prototype of Mahayana.


C1 Mahayana

The origins of Mahayana are particularly obscure. Even the names of its founders are unknown, and scholars disagree about whether it originated in southern or in northwestern India. Its formative years were between the 2nd century bc and the 1st century ad.

Speculation about the eternal Buddha continued well after the beginning of the Christian era and culminated in the Mahayana doctrine of his threefold nature, or triple “body” (trikaya). These aspects are the body of essence, the body of communal bliss, and the body of transformation. The body of essence represents the ultimate nature of the Buddha. Beyond form, it is the unchanging absolute and is spoken of as consciousness or the void. This essential Buddha nature manifests itself, taking on heavenly form as the body of communal bliss. In this form the Buddha sits in godlike splendor, preaching in the heavens. Lastly, the Buddha nature appears on earth in human form to convert humankind. Such an appearance is known as a body of transformation. The Buddha has taken on such an appearance countless times. Mahayana considers the historical Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama, only one example of the body of transformation.

The new Mahayana concept of the Buddha
made possible concepts of divine grace and ongoing revelation that are lacking in Theravada. Belief in the Buddha’s heavenly manifestations led to the development of a significant devotional strand in Mahayana. Some scholars have therefore described the early development of Mahayana in terms of the “Hinduization” of Buddhism.

(And the equally self-inflicted conscious Daoisation of Buddhism, etc. depending on geography.

Note influence of pre-existing Hindu matters including Brahman - majorly copied in Tibetan Buddhist sects - and bhakti.)

Another important new concept in Mahayana is that of the bodhisattva or enlightenment being, as the ideal toward which the good Buddhist should aspire. A bodhisattva is an individual who has attained perfect enlightenment but delays entry into final nirvana in order to make possible the salvation of all other sentient beings. The bodhisattva transfers merit built up over many lifetimes to less fortunate creatures. The key attributes of this social saint are compassion and loving-kindness. For this reason Mahayana considers the bodhisattva superior to the arhats who represent the ideal of Theravada. Certain bodhisattvas, such as Maitreya, who represents the Buddha’s loving-kindness, and Avalokitesvara or Guanyin, who represents his compassion, have become the focus of popular devotional worship in Mahayana.


Microsoft® Encarta® Encyclopedia 2002. © 1993-2001 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
BTW, bodhisattva is very similar in notion to the pre-existing concept of Daoist 'Immortals'... I imagine I know the Chinese word for this, but don't want to get it wrong. Statues and paintings of some of the famous ones would be familiar to many, I think. Anyway, Daoist 'Immortals' used to be Daoists - human or otherwise - who had successfully self-cultivated to rise to becoming Immortals. Thereafter, in line with Daoist Heaven, they help and guide other Daoists to similarly successfully cultivate Daoism also, just as the Daoist Gods are famous for doing. The Immortals are often revered or worshipped alongside the Daoists' Gods - rather like Hindus worship Rishis and Hindu Yogis/Siddhars along with our Gods etc. Similar to the Daoist Gods, the Immortals commune with Daoists and intervene beneficially in their lives. To this day. Compassion and loving-kindness are naturally their forte, as they do not judge failure and are a source of advice, teachings and other help - having even special powers to help. IIRC Buddhism tried to declare a few of the more famous ones as bodhisattvas later on, but appear not to have succeeded as well as they did with some other Daoist beings of Daoist cosmology.

As a point of interest, though not otherwise relevant to my posts, the above (2nd) encarta article also states:

Quote:Buddhism was first introduced into Tibet through the influence of foreign wives of the king, beginning in the 7th century ad.
Of course. (Curious, were these ones planted too?)

But generally too, happens all too often: wives following missionary religions. And the top-down missionising strategy. How much they have altered the character of nations.

It's on "trifling" matters like the choice of spouse that destinies of entire countries rest.
And the actual stuff I wished to point out begins here.


en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shramana (contents as at sometime early March, when I saved the page to show it to a relative)


The Shramana (also spelled Sramana) movement was a non-Vedic movement parallel to Vedic Hinduism in ancient India. The Shramana tradition gave rise to Jainism,[1] Buddhism,[2] Yoga,[3] and was responsible for the related concepts of the cycle of birth and death, samsara, and liberation.[4]


The Pāli samaṇa and the Sanskrit Śramaṇa' refer to renunciate ascetic traditions from the middle of the first millenium before the common era.[5] They were individual, experiential and free-form traditions, independent of society; and in religious competition with brahmin priests, who as opposed to Shramanas, stressed on mastery of texts and performing rituals.[5]


A Sanskrit definition of Shramana is śramati tapasyatīti śramaṇaḥ ("a śramaṇa is he who exerts himself and performs religious austerities").[citation needed] However, Indian grammarians use the terms 'Sharamana' and 'Brahmin' to illustrate bitter opponents whose differences came from varying religious models.[5] Part of the Shramana tradition remained outside the Hindu fold by rejecting the authority of the Vedas; with the Jains, Buddhists, Ajivikas, and other religious groups developing as a result of this rejection.[5] Part of the Shramana tradition was absorbed into Hindu dharma literature with a place for a renunciate sanyasi in it, in the four stages (ashramas) of life.[5]

(And yet it admits that the word already occurred in Taittiriya Aranyaka. Aranyakas are part of the Vedam <= Oooh, more stuff they need to encroach onSmile

One of the earliest uses of the word is in the Hindu text Taittiriya Aranyaka (2-7-1) with the meaning of 'performer of austerities'.[citation needed] Buddhist commentaries associate the word's etymology with the quieting (samita) of evil (pāpa) as in the following phrase from the Dhammapada, verse 265: samitattā pāpānaŋ ʻsamaṇoʼ ti pavuccati ("someone who has pacified evil is called samaṇa").[3]

I could well be wrong, but I think shramana in the general sense also occurs in Valmiki's Ramayanam (?), with no mention of any specific religion - especially not as referring to anyone of some "other" religion. (But rather in the context by implication it was the same Vedic religion: IIRC "shramanas" were mentioned as part of all those who were visiting and fed by Dasaratha during some great Vedic event.) But I wouldn't rely on my memory or its accuracy and will need to confirm.

Great. I'm not wrong - plus looking up the net rather than plaguing my mind in what part of a book I saw something is clearly the way to go, as there are footnotes in the following that are specifically relevant to this very topic: it even bothers to explain in what sense the word is and isn't used in the text. Moreover it makes especial mention of how Buddhism (etc) is not implied, to pre-empt eager claimants:


Quote:Some scholars tend to conclude that Ramayana might have been written in post Buddhist period by finding the words like shramaNa etc., the famous wandering Buddhist monk sect. The word shramaNa in Sanskrit means only a pilgrim, and pilgrimage is an ordained aspect of salvation as per Indra is the friend of traveller. Therefore wander - aitareya brahmaNa [VII.33.3] The Buddhist shramaNa -s are the wandering monks in search of converts whereas Hindu shramana-s are pure sanyasi-s wandering for their own salvation.
Apparently, both Balakanda AND Kishkinda kanda of the Ramayanam use the word shramana (and both in the general meaning). In this context: the other Hindu itihasa on Vedic religion and society - the MBh - IIRC mentioned a great sacred Tree's divine beauty as attracting both Brahmanas and other ascetics of the implicit Vedic religion to do tapas under it. Any Hindu Yogi/Siddha can fall under that category.

It's true that many seem keen on claiming words like Shramana and Vrat(y)a and anything "ascetic" sounding for Jainism or even Buddhism in general. Even when mentioned in Vedic literature. Most especially when such words take specific meaning in the other Indic religions and are considered important for them to claim (as proof of their early existence). But IIRC Vratapati is one of the names of Rudra in the Vedam. (Makes perfect sense then that Mahavratas turned out to specifically be another name for the Pashupatas.) In the context: likewise, Arhanta has the general meaning of "worthy" <- again, makes sense that it is one of the names of Shiva. These words do not imply Buddhism and Jainism, especially not when used in Hindu texts about Hindu matters including society.

Back to the wiki page on Shramana: they're now claiming Yati and Muni too! And the word Tapas too (via Tapasa) - despite admitting that the ancient Brihadaranyaka Upanishad mentions Tapasa. Don't ya just love it? (Never mind that Tapas is known in say the Ramayanam and before. Didn't Vishvamitra and so many another Vedic Rishi do Tapas? But all of this must be disregarded in order to acquire Tapas for the "ur-Shramana" religion.)

Quote:There are only two references to the word Sramana in vedic literature.[9] One is in Brihadaranyaka Upanishad where it is placed next to the term 'tapasa', indicating that the Shramana like the tapasa was a class of mendicants.[9] It has been argued renunciation was not common to the Vedic society, with Yatis, Munis, Shramanas quoted amongst earliest renouncers.[10] In the pastoral cultures of Vedic people, the renouncer Munis and Yatis were looked down upon.[11] The renouncers meditated upon death, link between births and death conditioned by attachment to desire. These themes surface in vedic literature for the first time in the Upanishads. After passing through henotheism and pantheism, the anthropomorphism of Vedas entered the period of monotheism in the Upanishadic period.[9]

(Oh no, not "monotheism" <img src='http://www.india-forum.com/forums/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Big Grin' /> - doubly-obvious that non-Hindus/unHindus are writing this stuff.

Plus renunciation is clearly there even in the itihasas not to mention the earlier Vedic texts.)

It is in the Upanishadic period that theories identifiable with Shramanas come in direct contact with brahmanical ideals.[9] According to Ananda Guruge, a renowned Buddhist leader, the Sramana movement impacted Vedic education through the Upanishads, with debate and discussion replacing parrot-like repetition of the Vedas.[12]
Two things to comment on:

1. "It has been argued renunciation was not common to the Vedic society"?

Well, in contrast to this new claim: until recent years at least, the officially-voiced Buddhist complaint against Vedabrahmanas had been that a life of renunciation, i.e. of a sannyasa (which is admitted to have included yoga, which is especially mentioned), was only available to the Brahmanas - but only when these last were actually in that "4th stage of their live". Buddha's supposed revolution was always argued as offering the (note, as admitted: pre-existing) Hindu life of sannyasa to all people.* (But in making the argument, it was also explicitly admitted that not just Buddhism but even the Buddha had been forced to kick out the increasing numbers of those that - though willing - were not yet ready or else unable to comply with the strict demands/expectations, and seriously violated Buddhist monastic norms as a result. Eventually the Buddhist Sangha came up with the notion of a Buddhist laity, and relaxed rules for them. Meanwhile: In Hindu religion, laity following the path that comes natural to them or is familiar to them, while having a similar attitude of renouncing the fruit of their actions, were considered as attaining to the same Moksha as Brahmana and other Vedic ascetics, by means directly within their ken and reach. It's why Hindoo Religion was always the religion of the laity: it neither places impossible demands on them nor censures them as failures for not perfectly complying with such demands, nor denies them the pursuit of happiness in this world. It being an ethnic a.o.t. missionary religion, consequently Vedic society consisted of laity - as seen in Ramayanam, MBh.)

* The point to note was: this bit summarised a confession - in print! - that sannyasa (also repeated there as "monastic life") and Yoga existed in Vedic religion and predated Buddha hence Buddhism.

2. So Buddhism etc via the invented ur-Shramanism - placed backwards into time of course - is now to have influenced the Upanishads...

Since when does "it has been argued" form a statement that constitutes proof? (In that case: it has been argued that the world is flat too... Where do these people learn logic, btw?)

Note the way they draw conclusions/invent 'proof' of their imaginary ur-Shramanism: "It has been argued that renunciation was not common to Vedic society" <-> "Therefore Upanishads - containing highly developed notions pertaining to renunciation and ascetism - are not really Vedic/must have been influenced by the ur-Shramanism"

Christianism is clearly not the *only* religion that believes in claiming things Backwards In Time. Then again, such Buddhist claiming "techniques" have been applied to Daoism for a long time now. Hindus may at last start to feel the pinch. It's only fair after all. Why should such behaviour only impact (injure) other people and not those of India themselves, nah?

But it's always fascinating to see the claimant religions read *themselves* (rather than the general Sanskrit meanings) into Hindu Vedic literature. Their only "proof" of prior existence (in any form) is in *other* religions' literature, by choosing to interpret terms there to refer peculiarly to themselves. Apparently it is in all ways unlikely that others' literature is speaking of those others themselves: that Vedic literature could have been speaking of shramanas (in the general sense) amongst its own kind.

Why can't all these "Shramanic religions" find oral/textual proof of their existence - sorry, of the existence of the ur-Shramanism - in Vedic times? That is, find proof of themselves in their *own* texts/oral traditions of the period (not in later works projecting themselves into antiquity, obviously, nor read their pre-existence into other religions' works)?

Meanwhile, the Vedic materials show the internal derivation of ideas: the discussion and development and ponderings which concretised somewhat in the later Astika schools (the famous 6). All that the contenders positing the extraneous entity "Shramanism" can do - since they lack early evidence for earlier versions of themselves - is claim that anything in Vedic religion that they want for themselves "must therefore have been" derived from their posited ur-Shramanism instead. Circular "logic", of a specific type already familiar to Hindus in another famous matter of appropriation (one I was told I had no right to speak on, so I won't mention it). Hint: the positing of an entity, the claiming of existing elements A, B, C etc for that entity and then using the existence of A, B, C (etc) to prove that "therefore the entity is real". Then again, I suppose if the logic is allowed to hold for one, then every other mercenary opportunist would reasonably figure it to hold for them too. Makes for a nice pillage fest.

What has happened to important historical southern Hindu characters and their Hindu works is now spreading to consume all-Indian Hindu and even core Vedic material. Some years ago people were posting excerpts by Hindus invoking Patanjali's work to prove that Tiruvalluvar/Tirukurral were Hindu: that Tiruvalluvar's Tirukkural was parroting what was there in Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. Now that Patanjali's Yoga Sutras have essentially been donated to the Shramanic religions (in terms of "influence" at the very least). I predict there will definitely be Jain voices who will see the opportunity to reverse that argument - if they haven't done so already: to claim that "since Patanjali('s work) is 'obviously' Shramanic, this only further underscores that Tiruvalluvar/Tirukkural is too (and hence is Jain)!" Like I said, circular reasoning. And Hindus can't say anything about it, since everything is claimed from the intangible *ur*-Shramanism down. No proof of existence for the ur-Shramanism need be given - no proof of any ancient literary works or anything - and yet it can be used to claim all. A most handy device for appropriation.

(BTW, Patanjali is also famous for stipulating and instituting the Vedic (incl. Yoga-related) rites at Chidambaram Kovil which sets this mandiram apart from many of the other ancient Hindu Kovils of the region which are based on the Hindu Agama Shastras instead. <- The smallish implication in that statement was that Patanjali was doubly identifiable as a Vedic Hindoo (since Agamic Kovils are specifically of the Vedic religion themselves). But no doubt the Chidambaram Kovil's references to Patanjali will be dismissed as "but late Hindu tradition" about him - as so many other things are - in order to make it all "originally Shramanic" and "not really Hindu in essence".)

Oh it's getting better and better - so entertaining! (Well, until you remember these guys mean business - and that the world is full of Ready Believers not to mention Applauders who lap this stuff up):

Quote:The heterogenous nature of Upanishads shows infusions of both social and philosophical elements, pointing to evolution of new doctrines from non-brahmanical sources.[9] While the Upanishadic doctrines of Brahman and Atman can be traced back to the Vedas and Brahmanas, the doctrines of Transmigration (as punarjanma), Karma (as action), and Emancipation (as moksha) do not follow with consistency from vedic traditions, and are fundamental to the Shramana religions.[9]

Several śramaṇa movements are known to have existed in India, even before the 6th century BCE, and these influenced both the Astika and the Nastika traditions of Indian philosophy. It was as a Shramana that the Buddha left his father's palace and practised austerities.[14] The Brahmajāla Sutta mentions many śramaṇas with whom Buddha disagreed.[15] Some scholars [b]opine Sramanas of Jaina tradition were widespread in the Indus Valley, with the relics of Indus Valley civilization representing Jaina culture, like the standing nude male figures (Jaina Kayotsarga), idols in Padmasana and images with serpent-heads, and the Bull symbol of Vrshabadeva.[16][17][18][19][/b] However, other scholars opine the Sramana cultures arose and flourished in the Gangetic areas, rather than the Indus Valley.[12] Additionally, some scholars opine the term Shramana appears in texts of the Brahmanas as a religious order other than the Vedic (ie., Astika) traditions,[17]. (*Later* texts of Hindus do refer to non-lay adherents of the then-known nastika Jain, Buddhist, Ajeevika type religions as "Shramanas" - capital S sense - in distinction to those of the Vedic religion. But in such cases it was not used in a general sense anymore but the specific one it had gained by that time. But in ancient Hindu scriptures from Vedic texts to Ramayanam and Mahabharata, it is used in the general sense, as was also argued for the Ramayanam case at that link to its translation.)

The Shramana tradition of the Jaina religion is considered the oldest of the non-Aryan group, as an independent pre-Buddhist religion (Bhaskar, 1972), and is suggested to have existed before the brahmin cult.[20] From rock edicts, it is found that both Brahmans as well as Shramana Buddhist ascetics enjoyed equal sanctity.[21]
And they went and claimed the Padmasana too! But when they claim all of Yoga as "actually" theirs, what's one more asana, right?

Apparently they've not noticed the obvious, but the Vrishabha is very Vedic: the Bull is [Vedic] Dharma (the way Garuda is the vedam, and I think the Hamsa is - among other things - the parabrahmam and gnyanam). Not just in language (Samskritam!) It's the very name of Indra - repeat: he is known as the "Bull (the very Dharma) of the Vedas". It's also the name of many another Hindoo God incl. Shiva, Vishnu blablabla. So too it's the Dharma-embodied Vrishabha that Shiva significantly rides on. And this makes sense in the trio vahanas of the Hindus' trimUrti (vahanas hence also represented with Gayatri Devi): vR^iShabha, garuDa, haMsa.

Will return to the line highlighted in blue and bold later.

Moving on, it seems even the Charvakas are turned into a spin-off of the Shramanic religion (I never heard that one before.... While the Epicureans of GR space are ascetic and fit a very general meaning of terms like shramana or yati at least - down to being not just frugal and vegetarians but IIRC avoiding promiscuity and even going towards abstinence/celibacy. But the Charvaka ideology... is ascetic/shramana? Maybe I just missed the reasoning behind the argument?)

Quote:Though Shramana traditions are associated with ascetism, some shramana traditions were, in fact, peculiar as materialists, in the sense they preached a worldly existence and carried denunciation of brahmanical orthodoxy to the extreme.[14][13] The Shramana traditions included a range of beliefs, such as the Cārvākas, who on one end of the spectrum lived a luxurious life, to the Jainas, who on the other hand, developed a theory of extreme self-mortification. Some Shramanas were openly critical of the sacrificial traditions of the brahmins and the concepts of Karma, claiming them to be simply a swindle --[22]

No I see. It makes sense that they would bring in the Charvakas too: it's all about amalgamating all the anti-Vedic and non-Vedic groups and inserting their swipes against Vedic religion (besides making Vedic religion alien to the subcontinent and themselves the natives), which is, as always, most easily affected by making Brahmanas the butt of it.

Similarly/predictably, the ref section quotes again on how the Vedam is supposedly swindle, taking a swipe at Brahmanas in order to sever the Hindoo laity from their Vedic religion:

Quote:22 Buddhist Society (London, England) (2000). The Middle way, Volumes 75-76. The Society. p. 205: "..some of them said quite openly the sacrificial tradition of which the Brahmins had a monopoly was simply a swindle.".
But of course the missionary competition would try to blacken their opponents. They have to somehow make the Hindoo laity displeased with their ancestral religion - and alienate them from it - in order to convince them that Buddhism is Da Way.

But while the Vedas *work* - and even the anti-Hindu indologicals (trying to wrest it from Hindus while extincting the Hindus) have jealously and grudgingly admitted as much, considering even the drool with which they eagerly encourage and attend rare yagnyas by self-invitation [for copying I mean documentation purposes], whereas alien dabblers admit the same in an appropriating "the Vedas are actually ours/Oryanism -> *of course* they work" manner -

Again: while the Hindus' Vedas certainly work, Buddhism is known for appropriating and disrespecting Other people's Gods and pretending these have something to do with Buddhism (even backwards in time!). They're even caught lying all too often about other religions, which together with attempts at subversion/appropriation is merely in order to steal the laity of Other religions (as is the case with all missionary religions). E.g. the whole "Shinto Gods are bodhisattvas" type swindle.

That the whole purpose of aggregating the various non-Vedic and anti-Vedic Indian movements into a single "Shramanism" umbrella is for negating the Vedic religion becomes more apparent as you go on - in addition, the following also claims the conception/conceptualising of "Karma" as being "Shramanic" (note capital S again) onlee:

Quote:While authority of vedas, belief in a creator, path of ritualism and social system of heredity ranks, made up the cornerstones of brahminal schools, the path of asceticism was the main characteristic of all the heterodox schools collectively called the Shramanas.[9]

It was in Shramana traditions that concepts of Karma and Samsara became central themes of debate.[13], and it has been suggested that this may have been introduced into the mainstream by Kshatriyas.
[23] In Jainism, Karma is based on materialist element philosophy, where Karma is the fruit of one's action conceived as material particles which stick to a soul and keep it away from natural omniscience.[13] The Buddha conceived Karma as a chain of causality leading to attachment of the material world and hence to rebirth.[13] The Ajivikas of Makkhali Ghosa were a third successful movement during this time. They were fatalists and elevated Karma as inescapable fate, where a person's life goes through a chain of consequences and rebirths until it reaches its end.[13] Some famous philosophers of that time, such as Pakkudha Kaccayana and Purana Kashyapa, denied the existence of Karma. It was indeed the creative Shramana generations of the 500 to 400 BCE, in whom Karma doctrine became the centre of attention, who set far-reaching consequences for lifestyle and thought among Indians.[13]

In later periods, the Jains migrated towards the West and South of India and established themselves as prosperous communities in the Chalukya and Rashtrakuta courts. The Digambaras in the South could not preach against social ranks at the cost of their survival. It was suicidal for them to follow the brahmanical law-books. Therefore in the 8th century, Jinasena produced Jain law books in the guise of Puranas glorifying Jain Thirthankaras and declaring Varnas were not of Brahmanical origin but was promulgated by the first of the twenty-four Tirthankaras, Vrsabha, at the beginning of the present kalpa. Vrashabha prescribed Jain rites for birth, marriage, death and instituted a class of Jain-brahmans.[9][24]
Of course they would need to blame the persistence of castes in Jainism on the "brahmanical Vedic religion". But it certainly undermines the point Sandhya Jain once tried to make with it - by referring to what would likely be the same rather late Jain works: that Jainism had supposedly invented the Varnas including eventually/lastly the Brahmanas (which was indirectly but obviously an argument for Jainism "predating the Vedas", since the Vedic seers/Rishis are generally by definition Brahmanas and some among them were born-Brahmanas too).

This interesting bit from later on the page seems relevant to the quoteblock immediately above:

Quote:The Venerable ascetic Mahavira belonged to the Kasyapa gotra.
If nothing else, the very word "gotra" certainly implies something about the organisation of Jain societal structure (think deeply now).

But is this "Kasyapa" Gotra in any way supposed to be the same as the Vedic Brahmana Kashyapa Gotra? Or is it just a coincidentally similarly-named Jaina Gotra? If the former: wouldn't it be a *particularly* troublesome thing for others that the only Tirthankara who's generally recognised by actual history books as having historically existed* turns out to be of Vedic even Brahminical ancestry? However, I'm sure the claimants for Shramanism would have noticed such a flaw in their argument before, which by implication would mean that therefore the mentioned Jaina Gotra - though seemingly of a similar name - is not related to the Hindu i.e. Vedic one.

* Obviously am not here considering the Jaina theology of several Tirthankaras, which Hindus are not required to believe in. The matter is similar to how history only recognises Gautama Buddha as historical among the now-several Buddhas claimed for Buddhism. It is for this reason that Buddhism continues to be dated to the Buddha, same as how history traces Jainism to Mahavira. When Koenraad Elst and retinue insist that Hindus "be rational/reasonable/bla" <=> "accept that the Vedas are man-made and not eternal" [except that they *work*/it proves itself, which is I think why Hindus consider/adhere to the descriptions], why in the world would Hindus - who are not even subject to Jain and Buddhist theology, in order to be expected to bend here - buy into the "eternal Buddhism and Jainism" notions which are moreover known to have been eventually invented?

In the following, the claims expand further: to include not only Vedanta, Samkhya and Yoga but Tantra too now! Sounds like they're desperate to make everyone believe - and thereby perhaps even themselves - that everything Buddhism inherited from pre-existing Hindu religion (and which is hence present in Hindu religion) - is "actually" "originally" ur-Shramanism onlee:

Quote:Śramaṇa Influences

Among the Astika schools of Hinduism, [color="#0000FF"]Vedanta, Samkhya, and Yoga[/color] are early and very important philosophies that have influenced and been influenced by the Sramana philosophy, with their origins in the Indus Valley period of about 3000-2000 BCE. Yoga follows the Samkhya philosophy of liberating oneself from the grip of Prakriti (nature) through individual effort. Elaborate processes are outlined in Yoga to achieve individual liberation through breathing techniques (Pranayama), physical postures (Asanas) and meditations (Dhyana). Patanjali's Yoga sutra is one product (school) of this philosophy. Other Yogic schools and [color="#0000FF"]the Tantra traditions are also important derivatives and branches of the Sramana practices.[/color]

[color="#0000FF"]The Sramana movement later[/color] received a boost during the times of Mahavira and Buddha when Vedic ritualism had become the dominant tradition in certain parts of India. Śramaṇas adopted a path alternate to the Vedic rituals to achieve liberation, while renouncing household life. They typically engage in three types of activities: austerities, meditation, and associated theories (or views). As spiritual authorities, śramaṇa were at variance with traditional Brahmin authority. However some brahmins joined the Sramana movement, such as Cānakya and Śāriputra[4].

"Shramana" turned into a "unified movement" by repetition is curious.

Next, the claim is on to rope in the Ajeevika Chanakya - he's conveniently dead and hence unable to defend himself (rather like heathen soldiers in Malaysia getting an islamic burial after being posthumously declared to have been "actually" muslim). But it's interesting that they would rope in even the theistic type of Ajivika (despite their being attached to famously Vedic Gods no less). Yet the article doesn't seem to mention that the Ajeevikas were generally considered to predate Buddhism and Jainism... Or do I merely remember the chronology wrong? Hmmm, though I have a feeling I'm right, am not interested enough to bother looking for proof of it - at the moment at any rate.

As for Tantra:

Tantra practices in the Hindus' religion goes back to the Vedam itself. Atharva Veda is certainly admitted to have a lot of tantra material - though apparently tantra practices are also there in the Rig Vedam. [I guess AV's case goes toward explaining why some Shakta literature IIRC described this vedam as Tantra (literature), speaking of the AV as being the Vedam of the Devi, after describing the first-listed 3 Veda-s as being similarly presided over by each of the Trimurti.] Moreover, Hindu Tantra practices among Shaivas and Vaishnavas apparently go back to before the Mahabharata, since the MBh already knows of Pashupatas and the Pancharatra system (Agamic material on Vishnu).

In contrast, Buddhist Tantra is officially dated to the 7th century, although Buddhists later laid claims to some earlier Hindu Yogis/Siddhas as having been "actually Buddhists" (rather like they tried with Panini) and try to increase the age of Tantra's presence in Buddhism by just a few more centuries in that manner.

As for things that can be classed as "tantra" in a very wide and general sense: it occurs all over. A most popular living example: Daoism has always been famously permeated by it. At least 1/3 of Daoist religion consists of practices that Hindus may perceive as some sort of "tantra", and one of the 2 major Daoist subgroups' *primary* practice is "tantric" in this sense (the other group also carries out practices of this type, but it is not their "primary" practice). Talismans, charms, "exorcisms", you name it. <- That last is another important part of Daoism, but it includes more than the driving away of misfortune and mindviruses and angry spirits. It is also for undoing the residual effects of crimes/'sins' in Daoism that were committed unwittingly or which people sincerely regret afterwards.

Predictably, all such Daoist practices work (for Daoists) it seems. Apparently they have recitations and practices that will make even the Daoist Gods appear - even the major, Major ones - though at least some of these are meant to be used only in truly desperate moments such as trauma or when Divine aid is particularly necessary.

Indeed, some of 'Buddhist' "tantra" is not called "chinachara" owing to a mere coincidence of sounds, but rather, Buddhist texts specifically explain that those practices were derived from China, although they typically bauddhified the origins with a story on these practices having been originated by (a) Buddha in China. In reality, guess who "influenced" the origins of the uniquely-Chinese practices among these (i.e. where they copied these from)? The plain answer: Daoism. (Although where they may have turned out weird isn't owing to Daoism.)

Back to the wacky article: And now at last, they can admit to Brahmanas pre-existing (need to pre-exist in order to convert to Jainism in Mahavira's time or early Buddhist period), seeing as how they have invented/laid the groundwork for "(The Originating) Shramanism" as the ur-religion:

Quote:Similarly, a group of eleven Brahmins accepted Jainism of Mahavira, and become his chief disciples or Ganadharas.[25]

With regard to Buddhism, Randall Collins opined that Buddhism was more of reform movement within the educated religious classes, composed mostly of Brahmins, than a rival movement from outside these classes, with the largest number of monks in the early movement derived from Brahmin origin, and virtually all the monks were recruited from the two upper classes of society[26]

Ahimsa encroached on too (also in one of the page's references):

Quote:Śramaṇa philosophy

Indian philosophy is a confluence of Śramaṇic (self-reliant) traditions, Bhakti traditions with worship of deities and Vedic ritualistic nature worship.
These co-exist and influence each other.[27] Śramaṇas held a view of samsara as full of suffering (or dukkha). They practiced Ahimsa and rigorous ascetism. They believed in Karma and Moksa and viewed re-birth as undesirable.[28]

Vedics, on the contrary believe in the efficacy of rituals and sacrifices, performed by a privileged group of people, who could improve their life by pleasing certain Gods. The Sramanic ideal of mendicancy and renunciation, that the worldly life is full of suffering and that emancipation requires abandoning desires and withdrawal into a solitary contemplative life, is in stark contrast with the Brahminical ideal of an active and ritually punctuated life. Traditional Vedic belief holds that a man is born with an obligation to study the Vedas, to procreate and rear male offspring and to perform sacrifices. Only in later life may he meditate on the mysteries of life. The idea of devoting one's whole life to mendicancy seems to disparage the whole process of Vedic social life and obligations.[29] Because the Sramanas rejected the Vedas, the Vedics labelled their philosophy as "nastika darsana" (heterodox philosophy).

Intriguing, they've now invented Vedic religion, Shramana and *Bhakti* traditions side-by-side. Bhakti severed (as separate "traditions" no less) from Hindus' Vedic religion in order to pounce on that next too, I shouldn't wonder. Vedic religion specifically defined as non-ascetic and no-renunciation, since that is claimed for the invented ur-Shramanism religion onlee.

Moreover, Vedic religion is defined as "nature-worship" in specific contrast to Bhakti traditions being defined as worship of Gods. Apparently Vedic religion does not worship Gods <img src='http://www.india-forum.com/forums/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Big Grin' />/> Who is writing this stuff? They are SO debile.

Use of "Vedics" is also interesting.

It's *all* interesting.

Quote:Beliefs and concepts of Śramaṇa philosophies:-

Denial of creator and omnipotent Gods (except that they forgot to mention that IIRC Gods were reasonably central to the theistic among Ajivikas - these were Hindus' Vedic Gods btw - which puts theistic Ajivikas closer to Hindus than to other Indic religions)

Rejection of the Vedas as revealed texts (<- careful, people could easily construe such a "Shramanic philosophical belief" as admitting to the pre-existence of Vedas)

Affirmation of Karma and rebirth, Samsara and transmigration of Soul.

Affirmation of the attainment of moksa through Ahimsa, renunciation and austerities

Denial of the efficacy of sacrifices and rituals for purification.

Rejection of the caste system

Ultimately, the sramana philosophical concepts like ahimsa, karma, re-incarnation, renunciation, samsara and moksa were accepted and incorporated by the brahmins in their beliefs and practices, eg. by abandoning the sacrifice of animals.[30]

Ahimsa's often claimed to be Buddhism's (else Jainism's) invention that then influenced Hindus' Vedic religion (rather as is claimed with vegetarianism). Yet the concept of Ahimsa was long-established in Vedic religion and was therefore also treated in length by the Mahabharata which, though it stresses ahimsa's ideal in the general case, also stresses at what times recourse to violence is necessitated: war that is justified *because* the villainy that will ensue - when left unchallenged - will be greater for all concerned. IIRC, the MBh says that both ahimsa and himsa are part of Dharma - the right action in the right context - with ahimsa being the state of the general case, and himsa the special case.

Quote:"The four pillars of Jainism karma-samsara-jnana-mukti have been assimilated into Hinduism. The Pancamahavrata of Jainism (Satya, Ahimsa…) have been fully adopted by Hinduism though not with the same rigour."

Wait. Did they really just claim Satya and Gnyana too, next to Samsara, Mukti, Karma (and vrata)? All Sanskrit words, I note. Forget that Satya (plus its root) has a high place in the Vedam. Karma is a very Vedic Sanskrit word (as is Dharma): these words were merely taken over and given different meanings in Jainism and Buddhism. (Which is why Hindu dharma is not the same as Jain and Buddhist dhamma.)

The original Jain liturgy is said to be in some Magadha language variant - called not Arya Magadha as I'd earlier misremembered its name, but Ardha Magadhi it seems. "Partial" or "Half-Magadhi" (?) seems to indicate some sort of dialect origins - even mixed perhaps. Regardless, it clearly makes the language historical (that is, Ardha Magadhi can Not be eternal, having precursors), besides making the oldest Jain literary traditions necessarily contingent to time constraints: Jaina religious materials - including the words of religious practices - were never set down (and quite possibly never even formulated) into words until the Ardha Magadhi language was formed.

The antiquity of the language of the Vedas (Chandas) at least dates the Vedas to such an early time as cannot be approached by either Jain or Buddhist liturgy - full stop - besides indicating the direction of borrowing for words like satya, karma, gnyana, vrata, etc, which obviously pre-date Ardha Magadhi or any Magadhi or any known Prakrita. If people want to claim otherwise, they may Prove It.

Quote:Buddhism was a challenge to the traditional brahmin practices, attacking its rituals and especially its sacrifices by the doctrine of ahimsa

I don't see how Buddhism of all things can pretend to claim ahimsa, when Buddhism wasn't even vegetarian originally - not counting backward projections. A bit hypocritical too, to boo at generally-vegetarian* Vedabrahmanas merely for partaking of sacrificed animals (since sacrifices are *prescribed* and hence any which involved animal sacrifices would have been found unavoidable/prescribed/required by such Hindus, whereas the Buddhist monks could always have *chosen* to control their diet rather than partake of killings - no sacrifice was expected of them. It's a cop-out to say that they *had* to beg for alms, and moreover shouldn't criticise the food they were given, when they could simply have asked for vegetarian food from their benefactors since they did not aim to acquire food by their own means.)

* The excerpts from the Mahabharata at IF about vegetarianism seemed to give well-reasoned Hindu arguments for vegetarianism in and from an entirely Hindu context: without booing and hissing at Vedic rites that involved animal sacrifice, since that is a separate matter. This indicates that vegetarianism as an ideal general practice among Hindus (but not all) reasonably existed in Vedic society since an ancient period. Such values could not have been inserts into the work by Buddhism/Jainism (or ur/"Shramanism" capital S), since in that case there would specifically have been condemnation of the Vedic animal sacrifice and subsequent consumption during rites.

This next bit from the MBh's Shanti Parva illustrates the exemption made for consuming animals of Vedic sacrifices when speaking of vegetarianism - showing that the reasoning for vegetarianism among Hindus was entirely Hindu in origin:


Quote:"Bhishma said, 'He will be regarded as one that is always fasting if he eats once during the day and once during the night at the fixed hours without eating anything during the interval. Such a Brahmana, by always speaking the truth and by adhering always to wisdom, and by going to his wife only in her season and never at other times, becomes a Brahmancharin. By never eating meat of animals not killed for sacrifice, he will become a strict vegetarian.
^ Oh and look ^ MBh mentions the ideal of adherence to Truth and Wisdom (without looking things up I'm going to suspect the words to be "satya" and "gnyana" in the original language) - alongside a vegetarianism that does not impinge on the requirements of Vedic rites.

Moreover, Bhishma here looks to be describing a sort of ideal of ascetic behaviour among Vedabrahmanas. <- Sounds quite like it fits that gradual renunciation that goes with self-purification.

Of course traditional Hindus who were influential in such things have over time reformed the matter of animals in Vedic sacrifices also (at least, where I come from), so that Vedabrahmanas no longer offered nor consumed animals in Vedic rites either.

Anyway, things become more daring than I had anticipated. Apparently the invented "Shramana movement" - gradually being concretised using repeat assertions - is to now have influenced the Aranyaka portions of the Vedam <img src='http://www.india-forum.com/forums/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Big Grin' />

Quote:Influence on Hinduism

Sramana gave rise to several elements which were subsequently adopted by several Indian religions.[42] The concept of the cycle of birth and death, the concept of samsara, the concept of liberation[43] and yoga[44] are ultimately from Sramana. The Hindu ashrama system of life was an attempt to institutionalize Shramana ideals within the Brahmanical social structure.[45] The Shramana movement also influenced the Aranyakas and Upanishads in the Brahmanical tradition.[46]

I couldn't leave it, had to scroll to the given reference - and it's as idiotic as could be expected/hoped for (no doubt sufficiently convincing for the believing readers of wackypedia):

Quote:46.^ Reddy, Krishna. 2007. Indian History. Tata McGraw-Hill. pg. 122. "Sramana religion seems to have influenced the authors of the Aranyakas and the Upanishads."
That's all the reference can give us, one statement. And that too an "it seems".

So by 2007 at latest, people have already been hard at work - even in Tata McGraw-Hill - on inventing a "Shramana religion" that would predate and moreover "influence" the Aranyakas (and Upanishads).

Well, to be logically consistent, it's understandable that they'd *have* to claim the Aranyakas too - thereby making the claim extend predictably to the whole "Gnyana Kandam" of the Vedam. Because they're after declaring "samsara, liberation - sa~Nkhya and yoga" as being "ultimately from Sramana". And as I said, it's an unravelling thread. They have to keep claiming more and more of the Vedic religion.

More imaginatively still, it's supposed to be the older and *native* religion of India, while Hindus' Vedic religion is supposed to have "invaded" India <img src='http://www.india-forum.com/forums/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Big Grin' /> as seen in the best line - which gave away the whole plot:

Quote:The Shramana tradition of the Jaina religion is considered the oldest of the non-Aryan group, as an independent pre-Buddhist religion (Bhaskar, 1972), and is suggested to have existed before the brahmin cult.[20]

Heard first in the lunatic fringe, it appears to slowly become more mainstream that:

- Jainism is "non-Aryan" hence "native religion"

- existed before "Brahmanas" (which is code for "Jainism existed before the Vedas/Vedic religion, but don't ask for tangible proof").

- plus combine the reference to Jainism as "non-oryan" - which implies that Vedic religion is uniquely oryan - with the statement on Jainism being "widespread in the Indus Valley" and you get the Vedic oryans invading and oppressing poor native Jainists/stealing their land and adherents. And that's what the Jain Minority Forum claimed. And now the same is repeated in more ... mainstream places like wackypedia.

But I'd already gone over the reasoning behind the motivated projection of Brahmanas as uniquely foreign.

- "Brahmin cult" is again *interesting*: cult seems to be the new name for Hindus' (Vedic) religion. (Compare with repetition of "Shramana movement" to give it currency and respectability.) Their choice of using "Brahmin cult" (and refusing to use/recognise the word Hindu) is important <-> Apparently, there's no such thing as any other Hindoos. I wonder how other Hindoos feel about Buddhism/Jainism/the concocted ur-Shramanism denying that they exist - or even ever existed - and that they have a religion, and that this is very much the religion derived from the Hindoo Gods/Vedas. Then again, the word Hindu itself is denied, denying that there is a Hindoo laity. It's all calculated, of course. It always is.

Notice how they just invented the "native dravoodians" (of the oryan invasion theory, though not explicitly named) as the ur-"Shramanas" <- they've invented an ur-religion for the ur-Dravoodians. Naturally, this religion is (related to) the competing Indic religions. That these religions are most specifically competing with Hindu religion for the Hindoo laity - i.e. missionising on Hindoo laity - is obvious from their constant hobby of making claims on Hindu stuff (which were earlier heard screeched by neo-Buddhism and its equivalent, the Jain Minority Forum. But now their looney claims have seeped into the mainstream/visible space, where it is all presented as "fact".)

The endgoal is not really the minute percentage of Brahmanas in India - although they're certainly in the way - but the humongous percent of every other kind of Hindoo.

Because all the above items point to missionising tendencies: the claim that Vedic religion is not in any way or any degree the religion of all the natives who are Hindus now, is an attempt to missionise the Hindoos who are not of Brahmana ancestry. Indeed, all those Hindus doing Yoga, anyone practising Hindu Tantra stuff (e.g. pooja or reciting stotras from Hindu Tantra texts - that's probably *you* BTW) or believing in Samsara and hence trying for Moksha and attracted to the Upanishads -

the claim is that all these are practising something that "actually" belongs to Shramanism and that they had therefore better convert to Buddhism/Jainism already, as this is supposedly their "true, original" religion.

Plus any Hindoos attached to their Hindoo Gods are (magically) declared to not be of "Vedic religion", but practising an independent religion filed suddenly under "Bhakti traditions" as if this is unrelated to the Vedas. Yet the Hindu Gods themselves are particularly related to the Vedas/Vedic religion - they are the Gods of the Vedic religion, they belong to it/it is of them.

So while easily-offended people may imagine this is all uniquely some insult to Brahmanas, the actual attack is - as always - on *Hindoos'* religion, it is aimed at severing the Hindoo laity from their ancestral religion. That is why the word Hindu is specifically never used, why the existence of Hindoo laity is never mentioned: this group is deliberately un-recognised, to strip them of their identity, so that they can then be herded into any identity others choose for them. By turning Hindu laity into Indians with no religion, these "Indians" are left "free" to be claimed by all religions: to be missionised by all missionary religions.

Because it is *this* group that is put at stake: put up for sale. Thus, the text tends to speak only of "Brahmanas" (used interchangeably with "Vedics"), no mention of any other types of Hindoos. So they claim "It's not anyone else's religion, it is solely the religion of Brahmanas." Apparently only Brahmanas followed/were originally of the Vedic religion <img src='http://www.india-forum.com/forums/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Big Grin' /> - it's now not supposed to be the religion of even the kShatriyas let alone the Vaishyas and Shudras. This is also why exclusively Brahmanas are singled out as the non-natives, as the (here implied, elsewhere articulated) "oryan" invaders: because the "Shramanic" religions want to claim all the remaining native Hindoos especially the Hindoo laity for their own. <- The Hindoo laity is regarded as the Prize pool, even though Buddhism was never originally a religion for laity.

And that is why they've now also invented a split of the religion into "Bhakti traditions" as a separate stream from the Vedic religion.

Never misinterpret what the missionary competition's negation of the existence of Hindoo laity means. It means only one thing: derecognition of them as Hindoos, as having existed as Hindoos - that is, as having any attachment to their ancestral religion. It is exactly the same reasoning behind why the christomedia calls Hindoo victims of christoislamic violence as "dalits" never mentioning their Hinduness, even when the victims mention their insubvertible Hindooness in no uncertain terms.

It's all a little mindgame. Everyone is out to convert the masses of Hindoos. They're considered a free for all. I wonder why Hindoos stand for this. Only they can protect themselves. Since that is the genius behind accusing Brahmanas exclusively (of non-nativeness/invasion, of swindle, of uniquely belonging to the religion etc): makes Brahmanas have no right to speak up for other Hindoos as being Hindoos. The clever tactic orphans both Hindoo parties from each other - leaving both bereaved - just as if they had never been of the same religion and had never been the children of the same Divine Parents.

But all this is creeping into the mainstream. Seen even in the opening quoteblock. Not only in Sandhya Jain's line that "In the 1920s itself, renowned archaeologist RP Chanda noted the Indus roots of Yogic tradition (possibly India’s most significant spiritual dimension), particularly the meditation forms that came to be associated with Bauddha and Jaina practice." But she also refers to Buddhist theology's many Buddhas to make Buddhism reach far back into a time when it didn't actually exist.

I think I've finished with that wacky page now. But there's sadly more. Not today.

Ramana's post is way up there in #163

I wondered how wackypedians would explain away the derivation of anatman, but found more memorable stuff instead: on this next page it does not claim all Upanishads yet (it not having been brought to speed with the developments on wacky's Shramanism page, I suspect. Besides: that the formulation of anatman necessarily succeeds the Hindus' atman concept is a fact that can't be denied). However, the page does specifically mention one Upanishad by name as being "post-Buddhist" and "therefore" - via conjectures using "possibly" - influenced by Buddhism:


Quote:While the pre-Buddhist Upanishads link the Self to the attitude "I am," others like the post-Buddhist Maitri Upanishad hold that only the defiled individual self, rather than the universal self, thinks "this is I" or "this is mine". According to Peter Harvey,

This is very reminiscent of Buddhism, and may well have been influenced by it to divorce the universal Self from such egocentric associations.[40]
Negations of what Is Not the Brahman/Self/whatever, as well as affirmations of the totality indeed being Brahman/Self/... is typically Upanishadic. And the negation of possessiveness ("mine") is another common Hindu notion - underpins renunciation in general of frugal Hindus and of cultivating a renunciatory attitude toward, say, the phalam accruing to oneself from performing Vedic rites. Also: IIRC the Gita also makes a difference between the real Self and being misled by thoughts of "mine", and misidentifying the self with those things that are not self (the latter fits with typically Samkhyan distinctions between what is and is not the purusha).

And then the Wacky page on this upanishad:


Quote:The Maitrayaniya Upanishad (Sanskrit: मैत्रायणीय उपनिषद्, Maitrāyaṇīya Upaniṣad) or the Maitri Upanishad (Sanskrit: मैत्री उपनिषद्, Maitrī Upaniṣad) belongs to the Maitri or Maitrayaniya shakha (branch) of the Kṛṣṇa Yajurveda, though some texts assign it to the Sāmaveda. It figures as number 24 in the Muktika canon of 108 Upanishads under the name of the Maitrāyaṇi Upanishad, which is included there as a Sāmānya Upanishad, associated with the Samaveda. The Dīpikā, a notable commentary on this text was written by Rāmatirtha.

Rhys Davis (n.d.: unpaginated) holds that within the manuscripts of this text is the earliest documented Sanskrit literary usage of the term 'samadhi' (Sanskrit). It was first found in the Tipitaka in Pali [1]

(I hope they don't intend that last as some argument for earliest antiquity:

Just because manuscripts of the Buddhist Tipitaka have been better preserved - and for that reason feature the now oldest *remaining* written reference to Samadhi, does not mean that the Tripitaka - or even Buddhism - predates the Hindus' usage of it.... Moreover, the Vedam - including the Upanishad portions - have been oral tradition since ages before they have been available in written form. So the presence of this statement in the page means nothing.)

The Upanishad is post-Ashokan, and shows signs of Buddhist influence.[2][3]

Interesting to note how Buddhism etc keep insinuating themselves into Wacky pages on Hindu matter. Rather like how they derailed Wacky's page on either Patanjali or his Yogasutras into being all about Jainism and Buddhism in the end. They sound very desperate to pretend they are the authors (backwards in time of course) of everything in Hindus' Vedic religion.

However, I'm surprised the Buddhists (or else the various ur-Shramanism-peddlers) didn't first pounce on say the Shvetasvatara Upanishad since it mentions Yoga and Samkhya. Is it an oversight? Then again, according to a Hindoo book from the mid 80s, a shloka from the Shvetashvatara is quoted by the Gita and hence makes it older than the Gita. (The author was also inclined to think that, since the SU repeated statements from a couple of Upanishads known to be ancient but presumably not from Upanishads considered later, this does not preclude the possibility of the SU being even contemporaneous with those earlier Upanishads which it chimed in with.)

Oh but this next in a comment to an article by Elst is another timely find. Looks to contain a crucial reason why Buddhism would have moved swiftly in order to claim this Upanishad was necessarily "influenced" by Buddhism: Yoga-related stuff.

The stuff in the comment appears to contain indicators concerning chronology of the Buddha/Buddhism with respect to the same Maitri Upanishad (though referred to here by its other name) and some apparently Yoga-type practices alluded to in the MU. The sentence structure looks to imply chronology, in specific that the Buddha came *after* this Upanishad's allusion to a Yoga-practice that allows the Muni state to be attained:


Quote:Harish said...

"The khecharI mudra is a yogic practice of great antiquity emerging in late vedic stratum first represented in the maitrayaNIyopaniShad the only surviving portion of the maitrAyaNIya brAhmaNa in both manuscript and a precarious oral tradition. In this text the khecharI mudra is expounded by shAkAyanya to the magadhan king bR^ihadratha along with proto-“kuNDalini” yoga (MaiU 6.20-21). The khecharI mudra here is described as the great practice by which one has the experience of brahmaivAhamasmi, a key teaching of vedAnta. The practice was incorporated into the early classical yoga of epic period. Subsequently, it was acknowledged by the tathAgata as a means of achieving the state of a muni. It is clear that in one his sutta-s known as the nAlaka sutta (verse 38), in the mahAvagga of the suttanipAta, the tathAgata expounds the khecharI mudra just as in the upaniShad as the means of achieve the state of knowledge i.e. that of the muni.


So not a "post-Buddhist" (let alone "post-Ashokan") Upanishad "influenced by Buddhism" after all? (Or at the very least not where the described Yoga practice is concerned - and which was exactly the sort of thing which enticed all and sundry into claiming such Upanishads' contents for themselves in the first place.) Oh well, too bad: Buddhism/Shramanism/whatever, Try Try Again tomorrow. No doubt they'll next argue that "the great antiquity (of this yogic practice)" implies it was of the "Shramana Religion" originally, and that its emergence in only "the late vedic stratum of the M-Upanishad" implies the direction of borrowing from the hypothesised ur-Shramanism *into* Vedic religion <img src='http://www.india-forum.com/forums/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Big Grin' />

Gave the main article by Elst a brief glance and it promises to be rather amusing: it appears he wants to donate Kundalini Yoga to Daoism? The attempt certainly marks a change from the numerous western books on "eastern religions" from the 80s and 90s which sought to absurdly donate this, that and the other core Daoist thing to *Hindu* (naturally not Buddhist) religion - including even the Qi, btw.* So I guess western writers on eastern religions will keep dilly-dallying on this from one double-decade to the other, depending on who they want to strike at. Aliens are such experts on heathen religions of the east after all, knowing it first-hand and all, that theirs are *surely* the books that must be read in order for native heathens to learn about heathenisms - including even heathens' own. Confusedatire: (Am I wrong?)

* Guess why they did it, what was in it for the aliens.

There's one more important thing that is being encroached on - a start has certainly been made and I suspect it will develop further since it's too much of an opportunity for missionary opportunists to miss out on. But best to wait and see if I'm right first before bringing it up. Hint: the looney fringe had already made noises about this - but quite self-inconsistent ones. When/if it will travel into the publicly visible and frequented spaces (like wackypedia), I don't know. But if it does, it will only doubly underline how it's all about stealing The Hindoo Laity for themselves. I.e. nothing more than mercenary opportunism on their part. Some will do anything to acquire converts, after all.

And now: as [color="#0000FF"]an example of where it all comes back to bite the Hindoos[/color] - others know no better than to take the nonsense (invention of ur-Shramanism) seriously:

Apparently, a somewhat recent Huffington Post tactic to dismiss Hindu Dharma with great disdain was to ask its readers to *vote* for whether Yoga is Hindu or not. (How "democratic" again, to vote on what is true, to vote on the ownership of a private community's private religious practices that have been distilled, repackaged and sold by greedy salesmen, stolen and made into "public/universal" property. "Democratically" voting in the truth - rather like the wackypedia. Quite like how the 'nature' of jeebus - as distinct-son-of-gawd-and-yet-also-gawd etc etc - was voted on.)

The Huffington Post page required readers to vote on the topic before seeing the article. Since I didn't regard it a voting issue, I thought I'd try the net to see whether someone had stashed a copy that could be read directly without casting a vote, so I could show it to a relative as an example of how far the interminable stupidity of "sharing" Hindu religion had taken Hindus.

Instead of the article text, found a couple of sites discussing the Vote For It article. One was by a typical dabbling alien, who was eager to ensure yoga was declared universal so she and her gang of likeminded could continue her new age dabbling.

And the other link was one that was ... directly related to the posts above, as can be seen in the emphasised portion below:


Quote:Bran Everseeking

little bits of this and that and photos.

ask, theme

15/3/12 Change My Mind: Yoga Is A Hindu Practice



This is rage inducing. Like… I fill in the poll ‘cause Yoga is a Hindu practice. You read the ‘debate’ as if any white woman should even be giving her opinion about this. Fuck this shit makes me angry.

How in the hell does the HuffPo even think it is appropriate to vote about facts!? Fuck. This is how cultural appropriation becomes so normalized that the appropriated practice can never, ever be reclaimed.

The white woman’s argument is so fucking typical, too. “It’s not that the Hindu’s who practice yoga aren’t special, it’s that everyone else is too.” No, it’s that everyone else is a fucking appropriator, and you’re sitting here with your white ass trying to say that Yoga isn’t a Hindu practice! What the fuck is it, then? American? God!

I would say It (=yoga) is Indian, coming out of the Indus Valley Civilization which is usually considered as before the Vedic religions. Hindu being a Colonial appellation as apt as calling all First Nation/American Indian religions the same.

In the Case of Yoga it is a gift of the subcontinent to the world rather than appropriation. Masters of several paths sent teachers out to teach world over. Though some of the bastardizations are problematic. That which was given cannot be stolen but as the latter instance it can be corrupted.

When I started reading the above I thought, mistakenly: at last, some sympathy. And sense too (minus all the insinuating that the alien terrorists' skin-colour is relevant somehow): someone else sees that this "democratic voting" sharade is no more than a cover for stealing in broad daylight and gloating while they do it. The christo(conditioned) west has stopped openly saying "finders keepers" (as was used in claiming native American land) although "Finders Keepers" became nine-tenths of western law at some point. But the argument for alien appropriation is more evolved and fine-tuned now: "Yoga was always everybody's, it belongs to everyone/the cosmos, it's spiritual/universal, Hindus have no right to insist it has anything Hindu about it and we need not recognise that it does". (The way the christowest now has evolved more high-level arguments on why they have the right to *continue* keeping stolen Hindu Temple vigrahas and are not required to return them to Hindus.)

From my starting off pleased to read that someone (presumably non-Indian) could recognise the theft, I came to the bit where it essentially said Yoga was "actually of the pre-Vedic religion of the IVC" (also: why plural for Vedic religion?), thus parroting the notions that wackypedian lobbiers - and many other Indians elsewhere - are trying to promote, and it became clear that Hindus will always get the short end. (And I do mean all Hindus. It's not at all only the Brahmanas that are targeted: the unnamed are the worst off - after all, they're not even recognised!) Even when it is Hindus' own religion that is at stake, and there's finally some reasoned sympathy arguing against alien theft of Yoga, this sympathy is redirected elsewhere and Hindus' native Vedic religion is made not only peculiarly alien but is also made out to be not related to (it's the meaning of "not the origin of") Yoga.

Another thing I disagree with is the final lines: Yoga "a gift to the world"? Why? Because new-ageist "spiritual" jetsetters and alien-recruiters of Hindu origin took bottled pseudo-yoga lite overseas and sold it to every dabbler who showed interest?

And Hindus would recognise all this as Yoga ... why again?

Then again, the whole advantage (and a source of amusement) is watching the aliens imagine they have yoga and have learnt it.

Of course, some less half-witted aliens have realised by now that they don't in fact have any of it and are grasping - even as we speak - to steal the "real yoga" from India, thinking that if only they pore over more stolen Hindoo texts that don't concern them and get more materials digitised - even as they murder Hindu religion in its own home (yes, it's the Same people doing both, it's always the Same people) - that they will then finally have real Yoga and Tantra and all that can be gained from these.

But I'm reminded of Hindoos' Divine Mother, who memorably sent that dabbler - whats-his-face - 'Arthur Avalon' utterly mad: sent him back to christianism <img src='http://www.india-forum.com/forums/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Big Grin' /> A suitable punishment for him. And so he never even found his way back to his own ancestral religion either (which was Not Hindus' religion, obviously, him being a Briton). So many dabblers "converts" keep getting sent back all the time to the dreary hell-hole that is christianism - never to be seen trying *even* "paganism/new-ageism" again - it's quite encouraging.

Actually this next admission on the calculated termination of the term Hindu is an appropriate find, though the reasoning presented does not go far enough.


Quote:Against Hindu identity

Among Indologists, it is now advised to avoid or at least problematize the word “Hindu”. Among the reasons for this wariness: Hindus themselves have only been using it for a few centuries, it is not mentioned in scripture but was tagged onto them by outsiders, it blurs important inter-Hindu distinctions and conflicts, and most objectionably, it is now the badge claimed by Hindu nationalists.
(The real reason is that denying existence of an (id)entity as an (id)entity ensures speedy extinction.

The tendency is to imagine they're merely denying Hindus a word. They're not. It is an identity - something *deserving* of a word to encompass it - that is being denied.)

Did say. The enemies know what they're doing - and they know why they do it. And they've latched onto the perfect thing. But I wonder ....whether they know to wield it to its maximum capacity - it has the lethal blow in it, after all - rather than under-use it as a pathetic blunt instrument.

But then, who can blame enemies, when Hindus insist on doing it to themselves and *would* argue for it. Blind as they are and will remain to the automatic de-recognition of Hindoo laity as a consequence (which has been making the latter's positon even more vulnerable). And blind too to how there are many more vultures about than just christianism.

Always was a damnable mistake. Enemies, if they have half a brain, will take full advantage - as they should. They're playing to win after all.

A couple of comments to a recent VV article are relevant as the interaction illustrates the typical behaviour of other Hindus whenever one among them dares to make an observation of fact as to antiquity if not origination w.r.t. the other Indic religions.

First, though, a statement from the actual article: the piece is on ahimsa, where Sandhya Jain quickly corners Ahimsa and vegetarianism (elsewhere claimed fervently by Buddhists) for her own religion:


Quote:Very early in its development, Jaina dharma compelled Hindus and Bauddhas to accept the supremacy of Ahimsa and vegetarianism, and fashioned these into cornerstones of Indian culture. Among Hindus, the Vaishnavas became vegetarian though devotees of Shakti practice animal sacrifice on ritual occasions, and many coastal and other groups retain meat in their diet. But once the vegetarian ethic was established as the superior moral ethic, it could never be dislodged through the centuries that followed.

"Jaina dharma compelled Hindus ... to accept the supremacy of Ahimsa and vegetarianism, and fashioned these into cornerstones of Indian culture". Really? Why, because she is so absolutely sure that there was nothing of vegetarianism independent of Jainism in Hindu religion?

Sandhya's quick to declare that Vaishnavas "became" vegetarian (as an implied consequence to her "Jaina dharma compelled Hindus and Bauddhas to accept the supremacy of Ahimsa and vegetarianism"). Curious that she knows to mention "Vaishnavas" - in what seems like pre-emption - though Vaishnavas' vegetarianism, as that of other Hindus, can most easily be derived from the MBh etc. "Sadly" (oftewel: "Helaas Pindakaas"), even the Mahabharatam does not appear to know of the existence of Jainism, though it knows of ahimsa AND vegetarianism as Vedic ideals rather well, as is evident even in that tiny MBh excerpt in one of the related posts directly above. (Indeed, some at IF had posted translations from IIRC the Atharvaveda (?) on vegetarianism and/or preservation of animal life or something - which sounded quite insistent on these matters. As usual, Hindus don't have to look beyond their own religious literature to find ideals that *Hindus* today respect or even hold to.)

What actually bothers me, but it's ceased to surprise me, is that most of the Hindus commenting (including IIRC Radha Rajan) sounded - as always - quite cheerfully approving of the claims made for Jainism, as if they don't know better. Nary a demur.

Also, where is it stated that it was Jainism that "compelled Bauddhas to accept the supremacy of vegetarianism"? Whenever anything has been said on the subject, either Buddhists claim most vocally that their religion came up with it, or they have started taking recourse to ascribing it to the invented ur-Shramanism to make sure Hindus can't claim it, or, when any external influence on vegetarianism in Buddhism is finally admitted (indeed, it's admitted that Buddhism adopted vegetarianism reactively rather than vice-versa as Buddhism now chooses to claim), the argument sounds a variation of the following - x-posting relevant bit (but leaving my comment in purple in):


Quote:Waley makes an educated guess that vegetarianism arose among Hindu followers of Vishnu a century or two before the Mahayana movement took root (the Vishnu cult was the rising movement in Hindu culture at that time).

(Actually, vegetarianism among Hindu communities - at times as something distinct from ritual sacrifices involving animals - has existed much longer than even that and goes back to old Hindu religious texts, but saying so could invite trouble. Hence one strikes such a statement from the official record. As in, I didn't say anything.)

Cultural and social pressures from the Hindu majority may have pushed the minority Buddhists to accepting their neighbours' vegetarian lifestyle in order to reduce friction in their communities. This became doctrinal when the Mahayana texts were being written, somewhat later.

On this bit in Sandhya's quoted statements:

Quote:Though devotees of Shakti practice animal sacrifice on ritual occasions

She doesn't appear to know that several Shaiva and Shakta communities are and have been pointedly vegetarian - and most specifically remain so during their rituals - not just the Brahmanas among them. (Because some Shaktas simply do not do animal sacrifice, since they have their own Shakta rituals of their own ancestral Shakta path, and they are *required* to be vegetarian).

But then, lots of Hindu sub-communities within the Hindu religion are and have been vegetarian. Quite like how not every Hellene was a vegetarian, but many ascetic individual Hellenes and even entire communities of Hellenes *were*. Facts of history. The same goes for Daoists. Several brahmana sects are particularly vegetarian, go back as far as you will. (Again, Not counting Vedic sacrifices in earlier periods at any rate. Come sacrifice, some among the Daoist and Hellenistic vegetarians ceased to insist on ahimsa too, even if some Daoists chose not to eat of the sacrifice. However, the case of animals in sacrifice had been a source of internal debate among Daoists as also Hellenes. Similarly, it led to changes and reforms within Vedic ritualists as well. But Note: *some* Daoist communities always sacrificed only vegetarian fare in their rituals to the Gods since the most ancient times, others in time changed over to pure-vegetarian sacrifices.)

"But once the vegetarian ethic was established as the superior moral ethic"

Superior moral ethic...? Not sure about the infallibility of the assertion.

Humans' vegetarianism is better for animals certainly, just as animals who don't end up sacrificed have the chance to continue their life in this world (something I would wish no less for myself). But the true gain - as with any choice - is only when the individual *chooses* of their own personal insight and deliberation to do anything that they deem is right and worthy toward their fellow creatures. Not by others insisting for them that such-and-such is the "superior moral ethic". It's also why I agree with one particular kind of Hellenistic argument in favour of other animals' right to self-determination: why *not* let others live their lives unencumbered, to its natural completion, where such is in our power?

On to the 2 related comments to Sandhya Jain's piece on Ahimsa (linked above), which illustrate the typical behaviour of other Hindus whenever one among them dares to make an observation of fact as to antiquity if not origination w.r.t. the other Indic religions.

And if Hindus ever give out a peep at all, it is only ever as a response to counteract the encroachment on matters concerning Hindu religion. But even reaction is never allowed.

Quote:Sandhya Madam. I feel that Mahavir and Buddha have taken a lot from the Upanishads , even though they rejected Vedas . Just read Sandilay Upanishad , there is so much similarity with Mahivirs works. Similarly the Dhammapada looks a rehash of Upanishads ( the major plus some minor ones) Here is a passage from Sandilya Upanishad where Ahimsa is mentioned and explained well.

Sandilya questioned Atharvan thus: “Please tell me about the eight Angas (parts) of Yoga which is the means of attaining to Atman.”

Atharvan replied: “The eight Angas of Yoga are Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi. Of these, Yama is of ten kinds; and so is Niyama. There are eight Asanas. Pranayama is of three kinds; Pratyahara is of five kinds; so also is Dharana. Dhyana is of two kinds and Samadhi is of one kind only.

Under Yama (forbearance) are ten: Ahimsa, Satya, Asteya, Brahmacharya, Daya, Arjava,Kshama, Dhriti, Mitahara and Saucha. Of these, Ahimsa is the not causing of any pain to any living being at any time through the actions of one’s mind, speech, or body. Satya is the speaking of the truth that conduces to the well-being of creatures, through the actions of one’s mind, speech, or body. Asteya is not coveting of another’s property through the actions of one’s mind, speech, or body. Brahmacharya is the refraining from sexual inter-course in all places and in all states in mind, speech or body. Daya is kindliness towards all creatures in all places. Arjava is the preserving of equanimity of mind, speech, or body in the performance or non-performance of the actions ordained or forbidden to be done. Kshama is the bearing patiently of all pleasant or unpleasant things, such as praise or blow. Dhriti is the preserving of firmness of mind during the period of gain or loss of wealth or relatives. Mitahara is the taking of oily and sweet food, leaving one-fourth of the stomach empty. Saucha is of two kinds, external and internal. Of these, the external is the cleansing of the body by earth and water; the internal is the cleansing of the mind. This (the latter) is to be obtained by means of the Adhyatma-Vidya (Science of Self).


05 Apr 2012
Quick someone, claim this ...Upanishad for ur-Shramanism too - if not straightaway as "post-Buddhist with Buddhist influence" itself. After all, it dares to Hindooistically mention (again) all those very things claimed uniquely for Buddhism/Jainism/"ur-Shramanism": from Ahimsa, Satya - full meaning - to :gulp: Yoga stuffs. Then again, they've already pre-emptively, conveniently - and without actual proof - declared that all Upanishads and even Aranyakas "must have been influenced" in exactly such matters by the invented ur-Shramanism. Muthu appears to have missed that development.

But quick came a reply to the above person - doesn't it always:

Quote:@Muthu - this mentality of this one took from that one and so only that one should survive and the rest should disappear - this comes from a Monotheistic mindset.

Read the article carefully - the common geographical and cultural-spiritual matrix - and breathe easily. We are about Unity and Continuity and not Uniformity and Division.

Get to the Soul of the Tradition, don't get lost in one form only.


05 Apr 2012

It's amazing that the Kashi-s never make the same point heard when Sandhya Jain

- just claimed Ahimsa and vegetarianism in Hindus' religion is "actually" owing to Jainism (without giving reference to proof of Jain literature on the subject that predates say the Upanishads or even the MBh?)

- in an earlier article referred to Jaina scriptures (late ones to boot!) for how Jainism had invented the Varnas, last of all the Brahmanas (like I said, the implication was that the Vedas postdated Jainism, against all common-sense). Kashi was not there even when Sandhya used Jain theology to claim the Vedic Hindu regent Bharata (whose name was given to Bharatavarsha) as being "actually" a Jain - proof by convenient reference to Jain theology. No doubt were a Jain next to refer to their (again late, obviously) Jain versions of "Ramayana" - where Rama etc were similarly reinvented as Jains - to thus claim that Rama et al were "actually" Jain too like the Bharata behind Bharatavarsha, doubtless Kashi would be silent then as well. (No? If so, why not? Is only *one* of the claims patently absurd? Hmmm?)

Of course, Buddhist theology in Sri Lanka similarly reinvented Ramayana's antagonist, the Vedabrahmana rakShasa Ravana, as a much put-upon Buddhist victim instead, who was illegally deposed by the evil - *because* Vedic/Hindu - Rama. <- They didn't pretend Rama was a Jain, but they made up for it by pretending that Ravana was a Buddhist. (But no one allows themselves to be detained by facts nowadays.) Thailand still has Rama as the protagonist of the Ramakien, because Thailand was Hindu before it was Buddhist and the Ramayana tradition there was - for better or worse - inherited from the country's prior Hindu state. The Ramayana, and Rama as indubitably the hero of it, was of such a popularity, that it could not be swept under the carpet (let alone Ravana inverted into its hero and Rama into its villain). Moreover, the kinship that the until-then *Hindu* Thai royalty claimed to Rama was also something that could not be avoided upon the conversion to Buddhism. (The Thai royalty was always inducted into their ceremonial position by Vedabrahmanas, even yet apparently.) Hence Buddhism just Bauddhified the Thai Ramayana along with the royalty and nation: Rama was now to have been a "Buddhist/upholder of Buddhism" all along (again: never mind that Buddhism didn't even exist at the time Ramayana was set), quite the inverse of the SL Buddhist own peculiar inversion of the Ramayanam. Rather like Thai Buddhist writers continue to admit that the popular observance of Shivaratri in Thailand was Bauddhified into I think a commemoration of Buddha's Nirvana on the same day instead.

There is certainly enough of others' theology to go around, as well as the continuous airing of it as some universal fact binding on all Indic religions (since some insist we are all part of one Sanatana Dharma, though others are dictating the terms of its history, its theology, etc). But when some Hindu at last dares observe in response to such lectures that their own religious works came earlier, BAM, other *Hindus* - of course - will slap their wrists and tell them "No, Such Things Must Not Be Said. Everything Hindoo Belongs To All OR None" (or the "else there is no such thing as Hindus" threat <- don't worry, the aliens make that threat much more ominously and have set promises store by it: they'll make it true yet). Except the same Hindus are Never around to say "It belongs to All Onlee" whenever the "It's all *actually* onlee Buddhist/Jain/... originally" claims are vocalised. Yes, where *are* they then?

Poor Muthu, he doesn't seem to know he's made a terrible faux-pax in observing that ahimsa in Hindus' religion predates Jainism. (Moreover, he doesn't seem to know or follow others' theology - the list of Jain Teerthankaras and Buddhas - as he apears to know only of Mahavira and Buddha as being the origins of their respective religions.) He probably has yet to learn the "Leave other Indic religions to claim everything Hindu, piece by piece - don't you dare gainsay them" rule which many Hindus are so adamant to follow and impose. Even long ago at IF, there was the instant and automated insistence on not referring to which Indic religion did(n't) "invent" vegetarianism in India - but silencing Hindus doesn't stop Buddhism and Jainism from repeatedly making claims to uniqueness on this score. There was also insistence - based on a determination to simply assume the best and having No Interest to establish the facts for themselves (a favour only ever rendered to Buddhism, of course) - that no one mention that Buddhist monasteries in several Asian nations kept slaves <- admitted and moreover *documented* though this is, even by east Asian Buddhists themselves. <snip> Doesn't stop Buddhism from claiming it is uniquely "egalitarian" and specifically declaring that Hindus' Vedic religion isn't. Yet in the comparison... But it does not matter.

I wonder how long Hindus will remain silent, bearing with it all. There's no *virtue* in it - in putting up with falsehood in order to please others - people know that, right?

Adherents of the other Indic religions

a) EITHER insist (in angry tones) they have nothing to do with Hindus' Vedic religion (includes Gods) - not that I wish them to do so - and who are even specifically working to walk away with important parts of Hindus' religion as booty for their invented "ur-Shramanism" and as a means to negate the Vedic religion,

b ) OR other Indics will be willing to form 'a united front' of a 'united religion' by setting the terms of Hindus' surrender, I mean, the terms of how Hindus' religion is to be "related" or rather incorporated into theirs: trying to pass their own (late!) theologies as one that Hindus should recognise as being that of the revised "one" shared "Sanatana Dharma". It's emotional blackmail. (Nor do I care for their sudden turn to allow degrees of various Hindu matters - especially regarding the Vedas - which they most particularly never countenanced before.)

Neither A nor B is in Hindus' interest, but Hindus seem ever willing to be shortchanged by going in for B (and B eventually ends up re-stating most of the same claims as A: a lot of the drivel one could read in the Jain Minority Forum and neo-Buddhist writing is inching its way into the mainstream. But it always seems to become okay and reasonable and acceptable when the *right* person makes the claims. It's never the claims in themselves that Hindus examine let alone wish to contest.)

"Sanatana Dharma" to Hindus means only the religion that traces to the Vedas* and (at the least the) Hindu Gods**. Indeed, to Hindus, "Dharma" itself means only the Vedic Dharma and not Bauddha Dhamma, etc. Oh sure, Hindus will swear by platitudes of all religions, and have an especial place for Indic ones, but the religion they know and live is other: it's their own ancestral one.

[* Among the scriptures of Indic religions, the Vedas - and hence its language - were the first to be claimed as Sanatana and without beginning and not-man-made.

** "Hindu Gods": not to be confused with the same names/claims on them appearing afterward in others' cosmologies and theologies. Even in general, "Gods" do not have the same meaning in the other Indic religions as they do in Hindus' and other heathen religions. And pointing to confused and self-reverting members of others' laities - like in Sri Lanka - does not constitute "proof" of the reverse. Actually - I may as well say it, since I don't know if I'd mention it in future: the Hindu Gods are the other aspect that the fringes were edging towards encroaching on, but in a fortunately and understandably non-commital way.]

"But we're all one religion onlee". Except when tomorrow others choose not to be Again. :grin: And when the oneness religion is dictated by *their* theologies, even/especially when in direct conflict with the Hindu version.

Why can't a sense of unity be derived - not by a forced merger of "theologies", which can only be to everyone's disadvantage (it most certainly is to Hindus') nor from a denial of distinct identities - but from a goodwill to coexistence? I don't expect Buddhists and Jains to diverge from adhering to Buddhist and Jain theologies, I only ask that Hindus realise that there is no need for them to sign up for the same. Hindu religion will not cease were Hindus to abstain from merging it with other Indic religions. Because Hindus' religion is not - just as it was not - dependent on others' religion.

As regards the increasing forays into concretising "ur-Shramanism", they are likely to grow more numerous and more demanding in future - especially considering how English-speaking Hindus never have the will (or the spine?) to correct anything in time, and usually fan the flames themselves. But A Stitch In Time Saves Nine, and Too Late is as bad as doing nothing. It may even yet be that one day this invention will be taught in your children's schools as the "original religion of the ('dravoodian' etc) natives of India" who came to be "oppressed by the invading oryans of the foreign Vedic religion". I wouldn't at all dismiss the possibility, equal absurdities are being taught there. And the current climate in India - determined by christianism as it is - is very much in favour of propping up the minority native religions to antagonise the majority native religion. They will not bat an eye nor lose a moment's sleep in doing so. And despite minority voices being feeble as to number in making their feeble claims, christianism will give them the louderspeaker necessary and manufacture the authority/respectability required to level the playing field: where all hypotheses and possibilities may become "equal" truths. And soon after, established truths may be discarded for being inconvenient to the retelling of the history of religion in the Indian subcontinent. You know, the way the Upanishads, Aranyakas, Yoga, Samkhya, Tantra etc are now declared to have been "actually originally" ur-Shramanic in origin :grin: People should by all means laugh while they may. (Just as the whole "Ayyappa is from Buddhism" story started in the same lunatic circles too. Yet how far that false fable has travelled now into the mainstream. I suppose people may look forward to their own kind propagating the "ur-Shramanism Theory" also. The topic flatters the intellect even more, after all: the very conception of it, the hypothesis, the search for "evidence" - in Hindus' religious literature invariably, since there are none others of such an early time to even consult.)

Another link: can see the writer develop the "ur-Shramana" mythology, but under another name. Again, note the year: 2008 -


Fortunately, in their noticing the "evolving meaning", they have indirectly admitted that all those termed vratyas of old are not those of later times: not those of the eventual religions who at some point were also using the term for (aspects of) themselves.

Again: Ramana's post is way up there in #163
They tried to appropriate the kshatriya-led dharmas of Buddhism and Jainism, these were not pacifist movements as is portrayed: nor were they related to "Empire Building"

The original relationship is best seen in Japan in that between the Samurai and Zen.

The caste histories of the Gangetic-valley Kshatriyas was hidden: this was the reason behind propagation of the second AIT of the Sakas: that there are no kshatriya elements extant in Gangetic valley. With concretization of perception, this linguistic-level "truth" was also accepted as the true dynamic of kshatriyata.

The AITists always support the fake Saka history, but there are also those who reject AIT but vouch by the Saka invasion. These latters promote a type of internal demilitarization, and it gets propagated generally due to the concretization of perception.
Sri Lankan Buddhists [url="http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/monks-laymen-in-sri-lanka-protest-erecting-mosque-hindu-temple-inside-buddhist-sacred-zone/2012/04/20/gIQADuYzUT_story.html"]protest[/url] the construction of a Hindu temple:

Quote:COLOMBO, Sri Lanka — Thousands of Buddhist monks and lay supporters have protested the construction of a mosque and a Hindu temple being built in an area designated as a Buddhist sacred zone.

Local journalist Kanchana Ariyadasa says about 2,000 protesters, including 300 monks, shouted slogans and waved the Buddhist flag Friday in the central town of Dambulla.

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