‘Women not barred from learning Vedas’
by G. V. R. Subba Rao - April 6, 2014
Expert says it is a misconception that reciting mantras from the Vedas affects child-bearing
Contrary to the popular belief that women are prohibited from learning the Vedas, here are two scholars who are on a mission to encourage women in mastering them. Speaking to The Hindu, Mysore-based Samveda Mahamandala President K.R. Manjunatha Shrouthy said not a single word was mentioned in the Vedas prohibiting woman from learning them.
“It is a misconception that reciting mantras from Vedas would affect child-bearing. In fact, there are some mantras like those found in Tandya Brahmana which should be recited by only women,” he pointed out.
Upapradhan Acharya of Acharyakulam (Haridwar) Krishna Bhatt taught the Rig Veda to his wife after their marriage.
“She did her Masters and M. Phil after marriage. She mastered the Vedas as well. I can proudly say that we are the only ghanapati [expert] couple in the entire country who recite Rig Veda,” he said.
Mr. Bhatt added that there were no restrictions on sudras acquiring divine knowledge. “At Acharyakulam, we are imparting Vedic knowledge to children of all prisms of life.
“All that they require is a qualification of Class V or VI in age group of 10 to 11,” he said. Dwelling on the Vedas and science, Mr. Shrouthy, a chartered accountant, said the Vedas referred to science and cited examples of gravitation theory and planetary movement.
“There are references to herbs for treatment of ailments in the Atharavana Veda. To unearth the essential aspects the Vedas and science, extensive research is the need of the hour, he added.
Keywords: Tandya Brahmana, Rig Veda, religious scholar