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Vyasa

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Majir
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« on: October 14, 2010, 03:38:40 pm »

Vyasa (Devanagari: व्यास, vyāsa) is a central and revered figure in the majority of Hindu traditions. Vyasa is conflated'by Vaishnavas with Badarayana, the author of the Vedanta Sutras. He is also sometimes called Veda Vyasa (वेद व्यास, veda vyāsa), (the one who compiled the Vedas) or Krishna Dvaipayana (referring to his complexion and birthplace). He is considered to be the scribe of both the Vedas, and the supplementary texts such as the Puranas. A number of Vaishnava traditions regard him as an avatar of Vishnu.[1] Vyasa is also considered to be one of the seven Chiranjivins (long lived, or immortals), who are still in existence according to general Hindu belief.

The festival of Guru Purnima, is dedicated to him, and also known as Vyasa Purnima as it is the day, which is believed to his birthday and also the day he divided the Vedas.[2][3]

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Majir
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« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2010, 03:39:21 pm »



Veda Vyasa (modern painting)
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Majir
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« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2010, 03:39:37 pm »

Vyasa appears for the first time as the author of, and an important character in the Mahābhārata. He was the son of Satyavati (also known as Matsyagandha), daughter of a ferryman or fisherman [4], and the wandering sage Parashara. He was born on an island in the river Yamuna. The place is named after him as Vedvyas[clarification needed]. He was dark-complexioned and hence may be called by the name Krishna (black), and also the name Dwaipayana, meaning 'island-born'.

Vyasa was grandfather to the Kauravas and Pandavas. Both Dhritarashtra and Pandu, adopted as the sons of Vichitravirya by the royal family, were fathered by him. He had a third son, Vidura, by a serving maid.

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Majir
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« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2010, 03:39:49 pm »

Veda Vyasa
Hindus traditionally hold that Vyasa categorised the primordial single Veda into four. Hence he was called Veda Vyasa, or "Splitter of the Vedas," the splitting being a feat that allowed people to understand the divine knowledge of the Veda. The word vyasa means split, differentiate, or describe.

It has been debated whether Vyasa was a single person or a class of scholars who did the splitting. The Vishnu Purana has a theory about Vyasa. The Hindu view of the universe is that of a cyclic phenomenon that comes into existence and dissolves repeatedly. Each cycle is presided over by a number of Manus, one for each Manvantara, that has four ages, Yugas of declining virtues. The Dvapara Yuga is the third Yuga. The Vishnu Purana (Book 3, Ch 3) says:

In every third world age (Dvapara), Vishnu, in the person of Vyasa, in order to promote the good of mankind, divides the Veda, which is properly but one, into many portions. Observing the limited perseverance, energy, and application of mortals, he makes the Veda fourfold, to adapt it to their capacities; and the bodily form which he assumes, in order to effect that classification, is known by the name of Veda-vyasa. Of the different Vyasas in the present Manvantara and the branches which they have taught, you shall have an account. Twenty-eight times have the Vedas been arranged by the great Rishis in the Vaivasvata Manvantara... and consequently eight and twenty Vyasas have passed away; by whom, in the respective periods, the Veda has been divided into four. The first... distribution was made by Svayambhu (Brahma) himself; in the second, the arranger of the Veda (Vyasa) was Prajapati... (and so on up to twenty-eight).

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Majir
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« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2010, 03:40:34 pm »

Author of the Mahābhārata

Vyasa is traditionally known as author of this epic. But he also features as an important character in it. His mother later married the king of Hastinapura, and had two sons. Both sons died without an issue and taking recourse to an ancient practice called Niyoga where a chosen man can father sons with the widow of a person who dies issueless, she requests Vyasa to produce sons on behalf of her dead son Vichitravirya.

Vyasa fathers the princes Dhritarashtra and Pandu by Ambika and Ambalika, the wives of the dead king Vichitravirya). Vyasa told them that they should come alone near him. First did Ambika, but because of shyness and fear she closed her eyes. Vyasa told Satyavati that her child would be blind. Later this child was named Dhritarāshtra. Thus Satyavati sent Ambālika and warned her that she should remain calm. But Ambālika's face became pale because of fear. Vyasa told her that child would suffer from anaemia, and he would not be fit enough to rule the kingdom. Later this child was known as Pāndu. Then Vyasa told Satyavati to send one of them again so that a healthy child can be born. This time Ambika and Ambālika sent a maid in the place of themselves. The maid was quite calm and composed, and she got a healthy child later named as Vidura. While these are his sons, another son Śuka, born of his wife, sage Jābāli's daughter Pinjalā (Vatikā),[5] is considered his true spiritual heir. He was thus the grandfather of both the warring parties of the Mahābhārata, the Kauravas and the Pāndavas. He makes occasional appearances in the story as a spiritual guide to the young princes.

In the first book of the Mahābhārata, it is described that Vyasa asked Ganesha to aid him in writing the text, however Ganesha imposed a condition that he would do so only if Vyasa narrated the story without pause. To which Vyasa then made a counter-condition that Ganesha must understand the verse before he transcribed it.

Thus Lord VedVyas narrated the whole Mahābhārata and all the Upanishads and the 18 Puranas, while Lord Ganesha wrote.

Vyasa is supposed to have meditated and authored the epic by the foothills of the river Beas (Vipasa) in the Punjab region
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