The Info List - Samhita


Samhita Brahmana Aranyaka Upanishads

Upanishads Rig vedic

Aitareya Kaushitaki

Sama vedic

Chandogya Kena

Yajur vedic

Brihadaranyaka Isha Taittiriya Katha Shvetashvatara Maitri

Atharva vedic

Mundaka Mandukya Prashna

Other scriptures

Bhagavad Gita Agamas

Related Hindu texts


Shiksha Chandas Vyakarana Nirukta Kalpa Jyotisha

Puranas Brahma puranas

Brahma Brahmānda Brahmavaivarta Markandeya Bhavishya

Vaishnava puranas

Vishnu Bhagavata Naradiya Garuda Padma Vamana Kurma Matsya

Shaiva puranas

Shiva Linga Skanda Vayu Agni


Ramayana Mahabharata

Shastras and sutras

Dharma Shastra Artha Śastra Kamasutra Brahma Sutras Samkhya Sutras Mimamsa Sutras Nyāya Sūtras Vaiśeṣika Sūtra Yoga Sutras Pramana
Sutras Charaka Samhita Sushruta Samhita Natya Shastra Panchatantra Divya Prabandha Tirumurai Ramcharitmanas Yoga Vasistha Swara yoga Shiva Samhita Gheranda Samhita Panchadasi Vedantasara Stotra


Chronology of Hindu texts

v t e

literally means "put together, joined, union",[1] a "collection",[2] and "a methodically, rule-based combination of text or verses".[1] Samhita
also refers to the most ancient layer of text in the Vedas, consisting of mantras, hymns, prayers, litanies and benedictions.[3] Parts of Vedic Samhitas constitute the oldest living part of Hindu tradition.[3]


1 Etymology 2 Discussion 3 Examples

3.1 Rig veda 3.2 Sama veda 3.3 Yajur veda 3.4 Atharva veda 3.5 Post-Vedic Samhitas

4 See also 5 References 6 External links

Etymology[edit] Samhita
is a Sanskrit word from the prefix sam (सम्), 'together', and hita (हित), the past participle of the verbal root dha (धा) 'put'. [4][5] The combination word thus means "put together, joined, compose, arrangement, place together, union", something that agrees or conforms to a principle such as dharma or in accordance with justice, and "connected with".[1] Saṃhitā (संहिता) in the feminine form of the past participle, is used as a noun meaning "conjunction, connection, union", "combination of letters according to euphonic rules", or "any methodically arranged collection of texts or verses".[1][6] Discussion[edit] In the most generic context, a Samhita
may refer to any methodical collection of text or verses. Any sastra, sutra or Sanskrit Epic, along with Vedic texts, can be called a Samhita.[1] Samhita, however, in contemporary literature typically implies the earliest, archaic part of the Vedas. These contain mantras – sacred sounds with or without literal meaning, as well as panegyrics, prayers, litanies and benedictions petitioning nature or Vedic deities.[3] Vedic Samhita
refer to mathematically precise metrical archaic text of each of the Vedas
(Rigveda, Yajurveda, Samaveda
and Atharvaveda). The Vedas
have been divided into four styles of texts – the Samhitas (mantras and benedictions), the Aranyakas
(text on rituals, ceremonies, sacrifices and symbolic-sacrifices), the Brahmanas (commentaries on rituals, ceremonies and sacrifices), and the Upanishads
(text discussing meditation, philosophy and spiritual knowledge).[7][8][9] The Samhitas are sometimes identified as karma-kanda (कर्म खण्ड, action/ritual-related section), while the Upanishads
are identified as jnana-kanda (ज्ञान खण्ड, knowledge/spirituality-related section).[7][10] The Aranyakas
and Brahmanas
are variously classified, sometimes as the ceremonial karma-kanda, other times (or parts of them) as the jnana-kanda. The Vedic Samhitas were chanted during ceremonies and rituals, and parts of it remain the oldest living part of Hindu tradition.[3] A collective study of Vedas
and later text suggests that the compendium of Samhitas and associated Vedic texts were far larger than currently available. However, most have been lost at some point or over a period of Indian history.[11] Examples[edit]

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Rig veda[edit] The Gayatri mantra
Gayatri mantra
is among the famous Hindu mantras. It is found in Rig Veda

ॐ भूर्भुवस्वः। तत्सवितुर्वरेण्यम्। भर्गो देवस्य धीमहि। धियो यो नः प्रचोदयात् Oṁ Bhūr Bhuva~Swah', Tat savitur varenyam, Bhargo devasya dhīmahi, Dhiyo yo nah prachodayāt

Let us meditate on that excellent glory of the divine Light (Sun). May he inspire our thoughts, stimulate our understandings. – Rig Veda

Sama veda[edit] Weber noted that the Samhita
of Samaveda
is an anthology taken from the Rigveda-Samhita.[14] The difference is in the refinement and application of arts such as melody, meters of music and literary composition.[15] Thus, the root hymn that later became the Rathantara (Excellent Chariot) mantra chant is found in both Rigveda
and Samaveda Samhitas, as follows,[15]

form: Abhi tva sura nonumo 'dugdha iva dhenavah isanam asya jagatah svardrsam isanam indra tasthusah Samaveda
form: obhitvasuranonumova adugdha iva dhenava isanamasya jagatassuvardrsam isanama indra ta sthu sa o va ha u va as

Translation (same for both):[15] We cry out for you, hero, like unmilked cows to the lord of the living world ! To the lord of the unmoving world who eye is the sun, O Indra !

Yajur veda[edit] The hymns in Section 4.1.5 of the Yajurveda
Samhita, dedicated to several ancient deities, state:[16][17]

May the Vasus prepare you, with the gayatri meter, you are the earth, May the Rudras prepare you, with the tristubh meter, you are the sky. May the Adityas prepare you, with the jagati meter, you are the heaven. May the Visvedevas, common to all men, prepare you, with the anustubh meter, you are the directions. You are the unchanging direction, make unchanging in me children, abundance of wealth, abundance of cattle, abundance of heroism. —  Taittiriya
Samhita, 4.1.5[16]

Atharva veda[edit] A hymn in the Atharva Veda
Samhita, for example, is a woman's petition to deity Agni, to attract suitors and a good husband.[18][19]

May O Agni!, a suitor after this girl's heart come to her, May he come to this maiden with fortune! May she be agreeable to suitors, charming at festivals, promptly obtain happiness through a husband! — Atharva Veda, 2.36[19]

Post-Vedic Samhitas[edit] There are many well known books written in the post-vedic period, also known as samhitas, because the word “samhita” also means “systematic compilation of knowledge”. Vedic samhitas should not be confused with these samhitas of post-vedic period. Some post-vedic Samhitas are: Ashtavakra Gita, Bhrigu Samhita, Brahma Samhita, Charaka Samhita, Deva Samhita, Garga Samhita, Gheranda Samhita, Kashyap Samhita, Shiva Samhita, Sushruta Samhita
Sushruta Samhita
(a treatise on food and medicine), Yogayajnavalkya Samhita.[citation needed] See also[edit]

Aranyaka Brahmana Upanishad Veda


^ a b c d e saMhita, Monier-Williams' Sanskrit-English Dictionary, Oxford University Press, page 1123 ^ Gavin D. Flood (1996). An Introduction to Hinduism. Cambridge University Press. p. 37. ISBN 978-0-521-43878-0.  ^ a b c d Lochtefeld, James G. "Samhita" in The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Vol. 2: N-Z, Rosen Publishing, ISBN 0-8239-2287-1, page 587 ^ Samhita, Merriam Webster Etymology (2008), Quote: "Sanskrit samhita, literally, combination, from sam together + hita, past participle of dadhati he puts, places" ^ Surendranath Dasgupta (1922). A History of Indian Philosophy. Motilal Banarsidass. p. 12. ISBN 978-81-208-0412-8.  ^ Friedrich Max Müller (1891). The Sacred Books of the East. Clarendon Press. p. xlii.  ^ a b A Bhattacharya (2006), Hindu Dharma: Introduction to Scriptures and Theology, ISBN 978-0595384556, pages 8-14 ^ Jan Gonda (1975), Vedic Literature: (Saṃhitās and Brāhmaṇas), Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, ISBN 978-3447016032 ^ Gavin Flood (1996), An Introduction to Hinduism, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0521438780, pages 35-37 ^ See Shankara's Introduction at Google Books
Google Books
to Brihad Aranyaka Upanishad
at pages 1-5; Quote - "The Vedas
are divided in two parts, the first is the karma-kanda, the ceremonial part, also (called) purva-kanda, and treats on ceremonies; the second part is the jnana kanda, the part which contains knowledge, also named uttara-kanda or posterior part, and unfolds the knowledge of Brahma or the universal soul." (Translator: Edward Roer) ^ Stephen Knapp (2005), The Heart of Hinduism: The Eastern Path to Freedom, Empowerment and Illumination, ISBN 978-0595350759, pages 9-16 ^ a b Monier Monier-Williams (1893), Indian Wisdom, Luzac & Co., London, page 17 ^ Edward F Crangle (1994), The Origin and Development of Early Indian Contemplative Practices, Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, ISBN 978-3447034791, page 124 ^ Albrecht Weber, History of Indian Literature, Samaveda- Samhita
at Google Books, page 63 ^ a b c Frits Staal (2009), Discovering the Vedas: Origins, Mantras, Rituals, Insights, Penguin, ISBN 978-0143099864, pages 107-115 ^ a b Harvey P. Alper (2012), Understanding Mantras, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-8120807464, pages 75-76 ^ Edward F Crangle (1994), The Origin and Development of Early Indian Contemplative Practices, Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, ISBN 978-3447034791, page 32 ^ Atharva Veda
Samhita, Book 2 Hymn 36: To get a husband for a woman, Translator: William Dwight Whitney, Atharva Veda
Series - Harvard University (Editor: Charles Rockwell Lanman), Wikisource ^ a b Rajbali Pandey (1969), Hindu Saṁskāras: Socio-religious Study of the Hindu Sacraments, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-8120803961, pages 162-163

External links[edit]

First Mandala, (in Sanskrit) Atharva- Veda
English translation of first 8 books of the Atharva Veda
Samhita, (Editor: Charles Rockwell Lanman), Wikisource Understanding of the Hinduism: Hindu Scripture VI, J