Rig Veda (May 2013)

As part of understanding core Hindu Scriptures, currently, we are covering different Vedas (one Veda each month). Continuing on that theme, this month’s topic is Rig Veda
Kids have the following assignment for this month:
1.       Describe the nature of knowledge captured in the Rig Veda
2.       Explain the meaning of at least one mantra from the Rig Veda
While kids are expected to research  (under parents guidance), here are few points about Rig Veda
  • Oldest Veda – comprises of more than ten thousand mantras (verses)
  • Mantras are filled with knowledge and inspiring thoughts
  • Literal meaning of RigVeda is knowledge in the form of beautiful statements
  • Full of spiritual and psychological wisdom
  • Aims to dispel darkness (that is, lack of knowledge) by imparting pure knowledge
  • knowledge of existence, bliss, and immortality, e.g., acquire wealth, long life, protection, and finally immortality (the ultimate goal).
  • Contains more than 40 hymns on various aspects of daily life describing the Ashram system (four stages of life)
  • Wisdom is revealed to both women and men sages. Special attention is given to women equality. For example, sukta 85 of tenth mandala states that daughter-in-law be treated like queen.
Hopefully, kids don’t face problem in locating mantras; but, if they do, please have them prepare the meaning of the first mantra of Rig Veda:
Om agni meede purohitam yajyasya devamritvijam. Hotaaram ratna-dhaata-mam.
O Agni dev (God)! Before commencing this task, I bow to you the enlightened one, who is the divine creator, the leader, and bearer of this entire universe.
Harsh Mendiratta