Book review: Indus Age- the Writing System by Gregory L.Possehl.

Vishal Agarwal vishalagarwal at HOTMAIL.COM
Thu May 20 02:17:46 UTC 1999

Not necessarily. As counter examples, I refer you to the following works.
You may or may not acept their conclusions, but the data collected in these
works is truly impressive.

1. Vyakarana Shastra ka Itihasa (3 vols) in Hindi by Pt. Yuddhisthir
Mimamsa, Published by Ramlal Kapoor Trust (Sonepat)
2. Prachina Samkhya Sandarbha by Pt. Udayvira Shastri; Published by
Govindram Hasanand (Delhi)
3. Vaidika Vangmaya ka Itihasa by Pt. Bhagvadatta (3 volumes, latest edition
by Pranava Prakasana, Delhi).

The fact is that there are dozens of books written by these scholars but
they lie unpublished because of lack of funds. For instance, Pt. Satya Srava
(the sone of Pt. Bhagvadatta) wrote to me in a letter in 1989 that he does
not have money left to publish a newer edition of his father's works. In
fact, the two volumes on Kalpasutras and Upanisads were never published. He
was able to translate (the translation is definitely much inferior in
content and organization than the original Hindi version) of one of the
volumes by the name "A History of Vedic Literature: Brahmanas and
Aranyakas". In the introduction to the 2nd Edition of one of the volumes,
Pt. Bhagvadatta had alleged that Dr. Bhattakrishna Ghosh had plaigrized a
chapter of his volume on Brahmanas and Aranyakas to compose his PhD. thesis,
which was later published as "Fragments of the Lost Brahmanas"- a well known
work! While Dr. Ghosh has added a comparison between the Shatyayana
fragments and the corresponding Jaiminiya Brahmana passages, there is an
eerie similarity between the fragments in the two works.

Reference also the Taittiriya Padapatha, Madhyanadina Padapatha, Katyayana
Grhyasutra (or which the Paraskara Grhyasutra is an abrdgement)  etc.
published by Ramlal Kapoor Trust.



----Original Message Follows----
From: Venkatraman Iyer <venkatraman_iyer at HOTMAIL.COM>
Subject: Re: Book review: Indus Age- the Writing System by Gregory
Date: Sun, 2 May 1999 17:51:22 PDT

>So be it. But then the traditional Pundits of India are no less trained
>Vedicists. I have come across Rigvedins who will, from memory,  point out
>most of the Richas with the word 'Shambhar', Arya etc. if requested to do
>so. There competence in the intepretation of
>Vedic Sanskrit can be second to none.

Dear Vishal,

Having been employed in India and abroad for several years,
I can confidantly say that traditional panditas have good Sanskrit
knowledge, though not in Vedic. Sadly, it is also rapidly declining.
However the traditional Indian ways of explaining do not stand upto
close academic scrutiny. Indian pundits are not trained in the
disciplines necessary to probe deep into the past, of India or
other cultures.

V. Iyer

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