[INDOLOGY] Frits Staal on the sameness of Vedic recitation

David and Nancy Reigle dnreigle at gmail.com
Sun Feb 11 22:23:39 UTC 2024

It is often said the pronunciation of the Vedas in Vedic recitation in all
parts of India, despite widely different local vernaculars, is the same.
This statement is attributed to Frits Staal. The idea is that he made
recordings of Vedic recitation in widely different parts of India and found
this to be true. As part of the same statement he apparently said that the
Vedas are the closest thing we have to a 3000-year-old audio recording.
Does anyone know where he made this statement?

I have not found it in his monumental 1983 book, *Agni: The Vedic Ritual of
the Fire Altar*, nor in his more popular 2008 book, *Discovering the Vedas*.
I thought it might be in his 1961 book, *Nambudiri Veda Recitation,* but I
did not find it there, either. Incidentally, when I could not at first find
my copy of this book, I searched the web for it, but did not find a
digital copy. So when I later found my copy, I scanned it, and I will ask
our digital expert Lubomir Ondračka to upload it to archive.org.

Best regards,

David Reigle
Colorado, U.S.A.
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