Vedic View of Sri Jagannatha


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The Origin of Jagannath consciousness, described in different palaco-literatures and interpreted by various commentators over the years, is no doubt, is a synthesis of almost all types of religious schools and philosophical thoughts propounded by several religious leaders and philosophical thinkers of Indian systems of philosophical streams which arrested the attention of the devotees and learners at various times and climes. Several saints, being attracted by the extraordinary features of Jagannath concept, have come to Puri, the sacred abode of Lord Jagannath, known as Purusottama Ksetra in various scriptures, and have been lost with the wonderful manifestations and projections of this unique culture. As evident from various literary documents, the worship of Lord Jagannath, the Daruvigraha (Wonden Idol) has been in existence since time immemorial. In fact a clear reference to the worship of Daruvigraha is available with the Rgveda in the following mantra.

In spite of the fact that Acarya Sayana, the noted commentator on the Vedas, has categorically interpreted the said mantra in favour of Jagannath, some scholars have made some desperate attempts to discard this interpretation under the pretext that the concerned mantra belongs to only. In view of the antiquity of the tradition of Jagannath worship in Orissa, mention of Jagannath –daru vigraha as referred to above, in the Vedas can not be ruled out. Beside, the influence of Vedic rituals on day-to-day worship of Jagannath at Puri also corroborates the Vedic origin of Jagannath consciousness. So many other Suktas like etc. are used in the process of daily rituals of Jagannath even today. However, the subject matter of Vedic narration of Lord Jagannatha needs further discussion and deliberations in view of the absence of any direct reference Jagannath concept or Purusottam Ksetra in the Vedas as opined of Shri Arun Kumar Upadhyaya, to document the present dissertation entitled “Vedic View of Shri Jagannatha” is a timely and laudable intervention, which is bound to open some new portals in the field of research on the concerned area.

Shri Upadhyaya, a senior member of Indian Police Service, is already known to the assembly of scholars for his outstanding contribution of translating the famous work of Sri Samanta Chandrasekhar i.e. “Siddhanta Darpana” in to English, published by NAG Publishers in volumes.

He has also authored so many other books on various aspects of Sanskrit literature, which stand testimony to his deep insight in the subject and crudite scholarship. The present book “Vedic View of Sri Jagannatha” is no doubt another feather on his cap and the said document will definitely benefit the readers and researchers interested in further sturdy on Jagannath Culture.

The Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeetha, Tirupati, accreditated with A+ grade by the NAAC and identified by the U.G.C. as Centre of Excellence for traditional Sastras, is really blessed and fortunate to undertake the publication of this work with the editorial craftsmanship and co-operation of Orissa Chair, which has been established by the Govt. of Orissa with the patronization of Sri J.B. Patnaik, former Chief Minister, Orissa to promote and propagate the Jagannatha Culture, as well as the hoary traditions of Orissa. On the occasion of the publication of the book, I congratulate Mr. Upadhyaya for his outstanding scholastic contributions and wish him a grand success in his future literary and cultural endeavours.

1. Purpose of the book- There has been many works on the so-called Jagannatha cult. All these concentrate on tribal culture claimed to be anti-vedic and previous to that. Jagannatha is lord of the world and thinking him as a cult is denigrating Him. This is one of the nama-aparadha to think God as inferior to the supreme and differentiating among many names of God. In Islam this is called Kufr translated as blasphemy in English. This book explains the various facts of Jagannatha concept texts of Puranas etc. it is not contradictory to other religious texts. It has also been explained as to why He is located in Puri town of Orissa in India. He is the best, among the 3 which can be described in worlds. Being the best, He is Purusottama and Puri town is well known as the region of Purusottama. Vedas describe 3 fold indications Braham, but the means Jagannatha-Balarama-Subhadra are related to His incarnation as Krsna, who is considered as God himself for all practical purpose. So these names do not occur in Vedas, though Subhadra is found in Yajur veda (23/18), but it has different meaning and context.

2. Matters- The book starts with scientific explanation of different concepts of Vedas which have been destroyed during past 200 years of British propaganda that Veda was song of illiterate cowherds. To explain the historic background also, an outline of Puranic chronology has been given as the Oxford pattern is based on Archbishop Usher wood interpretation of Bible that world was created in 4004 BC and no evidence or logic of any date is ever given. Though geological theories have well proved that earth is about 4 bilion years old and world is 8-18 bilion years old as per cosmology theories. Even schoolboys know Usher wood theory to be false, but Indian Historians in blind obedience to Oxford masters can not change the dates arbitrarily fixed by Maxmuller and other masters whose sole declared aim was to destroy vedic culture. The description of size of various leves of cosmos are still more accurate than the modern astronomical estimates and are given at almost every place in Vedas/puranas. An indication of these measures has been given to explain the theories.

3. Purusa levels- An outline of different levels of consciousness called atma has been given. In addition to the undifferentiated there are at least 18 types of atma mentioned in vedic literature. There is a lot of confusion by thinking all as one. An outline of the classification with minimum examples and scientific/logical explanation has been given.

4. Purusa-sukta- This is the essence of Jagannatha, so it has been fully explained in scientific manner. Names of animals, castes etc. are only indicative of class as profuse examples in this verse itself and elsewhere are seen. The other important chapter in Atharva veda about skambha (base or foundation) of world has been left out as it is very big. It can be analysed from the technical background given in the book.

5. Worship methods- Land of Jagannatha is also of Sri, so Sri sukta also has been given with brief translation. Methods of worship compiled by the great sage Visvaksenacharya (famous as Tridandi Swami) has been given in original sanskrita without translation. He was a sage of Buxar in Bihar and had performed yajnas all over the country. In each yajna, he wrote a book explaining some vedic text. This has been quoted from his commentary on Purusa-sukta written in yajna at Balia district (U.P) in 1997. The worships are both as per agama (tantra) and nigama (veda). All these are done through tradition of Guru which is of Ramanujacharya. However, except for brief reference of Tridandi swami or Ramanuja, there is no difference from other schools. On worship or its procedure, there was no difference among various Vedanta schools. Difference was at highest technical level. Ramanuja mathas also use Laksmi Nrsimha stotra written by Sankaracharya, so there sects. However, they may show respect to their line of gurus also while being grateful to Tridandi Svami for his learned compilation.

The worship methods based on v

Item Code: IDK892
Cover: Hardcover
Edition: 2006
Publisher: Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeetha
Size: 9.8" X 6.8”
Pages: 317
Other Details: Weight of the Book: 732 gms