Discovering the Vedas

Discovering the Vedas

Origins, Mantras, Rituals, Insights


In this unprecedented guide to the Vedas, celebrated author Frits Staal examines almost every aspect of these ancient sources of Indic civilization. Staal extracts concrete information from the oral tradition and archaeology about the Vedic people and their language, what they thought and did, and where they went and when. Using selections and translations, he sheds light on the mantras and rituals that contributed to Hindu thought.

Drawing comparisons with other Indic philosophies and religions, Staal unravels the Vedas and their meanings layer by layer. He reveals the original forms of the Vedic sciences, as well as the perceptive wisdom of the texts for the modern reader. Accessible and finely argued, Discovering the Vedas contains a wealth of information about one of the most fascinating texts in the world.


472 Pages | ISBN13 9780143099864
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Frits Staal
Frits Staal
Frits Staal wrote about language, philosophy and ritual buthis scientific pursuits encompassed diverse areas and disciplines. Born inAmsterdam in 1930, he studied several languages, including Greek and Arabic,but concentrated on physics and mathematical logic before a Government of Indiascholarship took him to India, Indian philosophy and Sanskrit. He travelled onboth sides of the Himalayas, taught and did research for extended periods in Europeand Asia, but spent most of his life in the Departments of Philosophy and ofSouth and Southeast Asian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley,where he was Professor Emeritus. His most well-known books are Agni: The Vedic Ritual of the Fire Altar, Universals: Studies in Indian Logic andLinguistics and Rules without Meaning.After retirement, he moved to Thailand, having long predicted that civilizationwould return to Asia under the intellectual guidance of India and China. He passed away in 2012.
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