7-Studying the Ved
Ved Vidyaa Abhyaas involves the following:-
Mantra Adhyayan (resulting in Dhaaranaa), Shraut Shaastra Abhyaas.
Ved Mantra Adhyayan is the first stage. This involves memorizing the
whole text of the Ved (every letter and Swar) of one's own Shaakhaa
(after completing one's own Shaakhaa other Ved can be taken up. This
is a Sampradaaya being flouted especially in North India.) This is a
Herculean task, involving 6-10 years for "good" students.
It may take minimum 12 years for average students.
At the end
of it, the student has memorized the whole Mool Mantram. In case of Yajur
Ved, Mool Mantra is comprised of 44 chapters (called Prashn in Krishn
Yajur Ved) of Sanhitaa and 38 of Paraayatam. Sanhitaa is called Vaakya
Granth, and is used in "practical" (Karm Kaand) of the Ved
epitomized by Yaagnya. So, "understanding" Sanhitaa completely
(every aspect of every word) is very important. Hence, Padachchhed of this
part has also to be memorized. Pad Paath and Kram Paath also should be studied,
to master Padachchhedam. Only after mastering Kram can one become "Ved
Pandit." This is minimum for mastering the Ved. This part alone takes
up to 2 years for sharpest class of students. Basing on interest one may take
up Jataa and Ghanaa also, which are useful mainly for getting complete mastery
over all the syllables (Pad.) Mastering Jataa and Ghanaa takes up to 2 years.
So, for just memorizing the whole Ved, it takes minimum 8 years (Kram Paath)
to 10 years (Ghanapaath).
for starting the study of Ved as per Dharm-Shaastra is 7 years 3 months.
"garbhaashtameshu braahmanaam upaneeyat. tam adhyaapayeet" is the
(every year) Ved Sabhaa are conducted in the regions where one belongs.
Every year, the Pandit (and Paathshaalaa) attend the Sabhaa along with
their students. Among other things, students are examined every year, in
the portion they completed. Generally Sanhitaa is studied first.
a days, not everyone, is studying Shraut. Shraut is the methodology of
performing Shraut Karm - Yagya etc. Some people may spend a brief period
of time mastering the other Karm which are useful for pursuing the
career of priest (Purohit). Pourohityam is the lowest career option and
not even 1% of the Ved students opt for it. 2 years of Shraut study and
"apprenticeship" will help a student become proficient of performing
(including administering) the Yagya Karm.
the Ved Adhyayan, the students are taught Sanskrit Saahitya starting with
Amar Kosh and including Shabd and Dhaatu Manjaree, Panch Kaavya and Naatak
like Abhigyaan Shaakuntalam. This gives thorough grounding of Sanskrit
Bhaashaa required for pursuing Shaastra. Not only that, it gives a lot of
Manovikaas which is very important for a student who is doing a lot of
But such a
regime is very difficult and is quite a challenge for even the most
intelligent of students. Unfortunately over the past half century, very
few intelligent students are coming into Ved Vidyaa. So, this is almost
nowhere practiced these days. Also, even in Ved Paathshaalaa the vagaries
of modern life have crept in. It is difficult for students to take up so
much hard work and concentrate. The result is, we are seeing so many Ved
Pandit with very little Saahitya knowledge.
Sanskrit Saahitya Abhyaasam along with Ved Adhyayan, in Kaanchee and
elsewhere, Ved exams included Saahitya as an optional. Not even a
miniscule of students opted for it. It is still being pushed for in many
places. Saahitya Adhyayan culminates in the 6 Vedaang (shat-Ang) -
Shikshaa, Vyaakaran, Nirukt, Kalp, Jyotish, and Chhand. People call
these also as Shaastra.
mastery of Sanskrit Language, one takes up study of the four Shaastra
viz., Tark, Vedaant, Meemaansa, and Jyotish. Usually Tark is taken up
first. Out of the remaining three, some or all are studied. With enough
grounding in Sanskrit, women can directly take up Shaastra Adhyayan.
Some are actually doing it.
study of Shaastra involves Ved Mantra. This is how those highly learned
women get to know the Mantra.
courses are offered in various universities in and outside India in
Shaastra and even Ved.
study Shaastra and get to know the referred Ved Mantra.
If she lives up to going through the whole meaning of a whole Ved, she
can 'see' all the Mantra. It is through study of Shaastra do women
situation in which women could get to know Ved Mantra is in Yagya (and
Nitya Agnihotra). Yagya and Nitya Agnihotra involve "inviting Agni
Dev" and handing over the Havishya to him. Though we can see Agni,
Agni Dev is essentially (like all other Devataa) known through Mantra.
The communication medium is Mantra. So, the Kratu-related Mantra are recited
by the wife of the Yajamaan, especially in the parts where she has to
directly perform. In Nitya Agnihotra also, if the husband is not able to
be at home at the required time, women do preserve the Agni and hence
chant the related Mantra.