Mandala 2

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The second Mandala of the Rigveda has 43 hymns, mainly to Agni and Indra chiefly attributed to the Rishi gṛtsamada śaunohotra. It is one of the "family books" (mandalas 2-7), the oldest core of the Rigveda.

Witzel (1995) on the basis of internal evidence suggested that the second Mandala contains the oldest hymns of the Rigveda, but changed his opinion in 2001, dating it with the "mid-level" texts.[1]. In circumvedic tradition, rishi Grtsamada of Mandala 2 is a descendant of Sunahotra Bharadvaja (of Mandala 6), which would suggests a younger age of Mandala 2 than that of Mandala 6, favoured by Talageri (2000) as the earliest.[2] There is no generally accepted relative sequence among the family books in terms of age: Being books preserved by individual families preceding the final redaction of the Rigveda into shakhas, they are all accepted to date to the earliest Vedic period, but considered themselves to be the parallel product of several generations.

According to Witzel (1995), the second Mandala contains the oldest hymns of the Rig Veda.[3] However, the Rishi Grtsamada of Mandala 2 is a descendant of Sunahotra Bharadvaja (of Mandala 6). This suggests that Mandala 2 is younger than Mandala 6.[4]

In II.3.8, the Sarasvatī is actually mentioned along with the other two great goddesses of Kurukṣetra, Iḷā and Bhāratī, and, the previous verse II.3.7 refers to ―the three high places‖ of these three goddesses ―at the centre of the earth‖. And Witzel himself points out, in the course of his description of Kurukṣetra, that it ―became the heartland of the Bharatas well into the Vedic period. It is here that 3.53.11 places the centre of the earth‖ (WITZEL 1995b:339). (Talageri 2008)

Rivers and places[edit]

Eastern regions in Book 2: 1. Sarasvatī-11. 3. Sarasvatī-8, (nābhā-pṛthivyāh-7). 10. Iḷaspada-1. 30. Sarasvatī-8. 32. Sarasvatī-8. 34. pṛṣatī-3,4. 36. pṛṣatī-2. 41. Sarasvatī-16-18.

Central rivers: 12. (sapta+sindhu-3,12).

Source:Talageri 2008

References[edit]

  1. Michael Witzel, Rgvedic history: poets, chieftains and politics, in: Language, Material Culture and Ethnicity. The Indo-Aryans of Ancient South Asia, ed. G. Erdosy, Berlin/New York (de Gruyter) 1995, 307-352; Witzel, "Westward Ho"
  2. Talageri, Shrikant. (2000) The Rigveda: A Historical Analysis
  3. Michael Witzel, Rgvedic history: poets, chieftains and politics, in: Language, Material Culture and Ethnicity. The Indo-Aryans of Ancient South Asia, ed. G. Erdosy, Berlin/New York (de Gruyter) 1995, 307-352. However, Witzel in "Westward Ho" (2001) says: "I have also since changed my opinion, based on new evidence, about the relative date of the bulk of RV2 which I would now include in the mid-level texts"
  4. Talageri, Shrikant. (2000) The Rigveda: A Historical Analysis