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The Brahmanas (
The Brahmanas are particularly noted for their instructions on the proper performance of rituals, as well as explain the original symbolic meanings- translated to words and ritual actions in the main text. Brahmanas lack a homogeneous structure across the different Vedas, with some containing chapters that constitute
The dating of the final codification of the Brahmanas and associated Vedic texts is controversial, which occurred after centuries of verbal transmission. The oldest is dated to about 900
The Brahmana are a layer of texts in Vedic Sanskrit embedded within each Veda, and form a part of the
The Brahmanas layer of Vedic literature contain the exposition of the Vedic rites and rituals. For example, the first chapter of the Chandogya Brahmana, one of the oldest Brahmanas, includes eight suktas (hymns) for the ceremony of marriage and rituals at the birth of a child. The first hymn is a recitation that accompanies offering a
यदेतद्धृदयं तव तदस्तु हृदयं मम ।
यदिदं हृदयं मम तदस्तु हृदयं तव ॥
That heart of thine shall be mine,
and this heart of mine shall be thine.
The next two hymns of the first chapter of the Chandogya Brahmana invoke deities Agni, Vayu, Kandramas, and Surya to bless the couple and ensure healthful progeny. The sixth through last hymn of the first chapter in Chandogya Brahmana are not marriage-related, but related to hymns that go with ritual celebrations on the birth of a child, and wishes for health, wealth and prosperity with a profusion of milch-cows and
The Brahmanas are particularly noted for their instructions on the proper performance of rituals, as well as explain the symbolic importance of sacred words and ritual actions in the main text. These instructions insist on exact pronunciation (accent),
The Brahmanas are a complex layer of texts within the Vedas. Some embed speculations about natural phenomenon such as sunrise and sunset. For example, section 3.44 of the Aitareya Brahmana speculates whether sun really rises or sets.
The sun does never rise nor set. When people think the sun is setting it is not so. For after having arrived at the end of the day, it makes itself produce two opposite effects, making night to what is below and day to what is on the other side. When they believe it rises in the morning this supposed rising is thus to be accounted for. Having reached the end of the night, it makes itself produce two opposite effects, making day to what is below and night to what is on the other side.
The Panchavimsha Brahmana speculates on rivers starting in mountains, fed by snow and rain, flowing over the ground and underground, both emptying into the sea. These speculations, however, are in the context of rituals. Each Vedic
Brahmanas also lack a homogeneous structure across the different Vedas, with some containing sections that are
The language of the Brahmanas is a separate stage of