Life – the most precious gift of God to humanity! I remember a time when I received a much-wanted book as a birthday gift and how very grateful I was for it! But how many of us stop to thank our dearest Lord for the wonderful life we have received?
Well, many of us do visit our respective places of worship every once in a week, or month or even once in several months. But that’s not what it’s all about. Thanking the Lord means living by His word, following His instruction and obeying His commandments.
The Lord’s word is what the Vedas are all about. The knowledge of the Vedas was revealed at the beginning of the entire creation for the moral, spiritual and physical guidance and upliftment of humanity. The Vedas are similar to an instruction manual that comes with any new purchase that we make. We have purchased life too and have paid the price for it with our karma. But we have neglected the manual that life came with it and this leads us to nowhere.
The Vedas have been regarded as the self-evident ultimate truth themselves. They are in complete harmony with the laws of nature for all times, ages and for all segments of humanity. The Vedas have no history in them, nor any names of persons and places, nor stories of any particular event or individual; they contain only those words and facts by which knowledge is made known.
The source of true happiness and prosperity of the human society lies in virtuous conduct (righteousness). Today the many problems that mankind is facing can all be solved by following the eternal laws and universal truths embedded in the Vedic principles.
The Vedas are four in number – Rigveda, Yajurveda, Atharvaveda and Saamveda. These were revealed to four great sages Agni, Vaayu Aadtiya and Angiraa respectively. There are a total of 20358 verses in all the four Vedas (Rig - 10552, Yajur - 1975, Saama - 1875 & Atharva – 5977). The script is purely Sanskrit and for correct interpretation, the root meaning of the words should be used in compliance with the etymological and scientific approach employed by the sages.
In ancient times learned persons memorized one or more Vedas. Not just Indian, but Western scholars like Griffith, Max Muller, Monier Willams, Mac Donnel and Bloomfield and some Eastern scholars like Sayana, Mahidhar,Ubbat & Damodar Satavalekar have also tried to interpret the Vedas. Unfortunately, there exist several false interpretations of the true meaning of Vedas based on the customary and generally accepted meaning of the words therein.
Vedas are the ultimate source of all our knowledge. Some of the many issues covered in the Vedas are: Theosophy (Brahmavidya), Dharma (Righteousness), Cosmogony (theory explaining whence the universe originated), Concepts of Space and Universe, other physical concepts like gravitation, illumination, construction of aircrafts and ships, telegraphy etc., the Science of the Mathematics, Medical Science, techniques of praising, praying and worshiping God, Salvation, Rebirth, social issues like marriage and structure of the society, duties of the students, householders, dwellers and denouncers. Besides, the Vedas also contain some unexplored facts of Science related to vitality, electricity, Energy, Astronomy, Geography, Geology and Hydrostatics.
The concepts of the three eternal substances: God, Soul and Matter have been clearly elaborated in the Vedas. We, the souls, lie between Matter (which is inanimate) and God (who is not only animate but also the perfect source of bliss for us humans). Vedas clarify the purpose of human life and elevate us to worthy heights of existence. We would only be repaying our debt for the life we have received by treading the path of idealism illustrated in the Vedas.