The following information is from Dr. S.Kalyanaraman.
I wish to add some thoughts to the third issue he has mentioned,
on language used in olden times.
In Valmiki Ramayana (Sundara khanda),
we come across a narration about Hanuman’s dilemma on the language
he had to speak to Sita.
If he speaks in Sanskrit that is spoken by the “twice –born”
(Brahmins or those who have had thread-ceremony)
Sita might get terrified to see a monkey speak that
and would even think that it was the handiwork of Ravana to lure her.
If he speaks in manushya bhasha, the language of the common man,
she might listen, though she would still be wondering
how a monkey can speak the language of man.
Thinking like this, Hanuman decides to speak the language that common people speak.
It is known from this,
that two languages were in use as early as Ramayana times.
One was Sanskrit – the ‘deva bhasha’, the language of Vedas and rituals
and another was the ‘maanusha bhasha’,
the language of man.
The deva bhasha was a well developed one, supported by 6 angas (vedangas)
Education was about learning the 6 angas of Vedantha
of which the first 4 are about the nuances of Sanskrit language.
Pinagala chandas and
Yaska niruktham - Acharya Ramanuja draws the meaning of “Maya” from Yaska only)
The rituals and mantras were all in oral form only.
They were not recorded in written form.
But to learn them correctly, written Sanskrit was needed.
Commentaries, sutras and many sastras were the only recorded books in those times.
But manushya bhasha was not a recorded or a written one in those times.
Even as late as 2nd century BC, we find the human language was not in written form.
Magasthenes has also recorded in Indica
that the people had no recorded versions.
All transactions happened orally and people did not resort to written documents
and everything happened in Trust
that the other would not go against the promise made orally.
No written documents at all.
Usually a written document is needed only as an evidence.
A promissory note or Will or a rule book or a written law
or a transaction note is needed
to remind one or bind one into complying with a deal made.
When every deal or action was done in the name of God
or could not be violated in the name of Dharma,
there existed no necessity to record such a deal.
That is why the people of this ancient land
did not find a need to transform language
into written form for a very long time.
Everything happened on Trust and dharma.
If at all anything was needed to be recorded,
it was done in Sanskrit.
It was only with the onset of Kaliyuga and
decline in the study of Vedas,
the written language came into being.
By the time Kali arrived, adharma and mis-trust had set in
and vedas which were in thousands were lost.
The first attempt at written form happened with
Vyasa (Krishna Dwaipayana) deciding to pass on
the core concepts of vedas in written form.
The surge in adharma necessitated written records for all transactions.
That is perhaps why, the human language started getting a written form.
The Jains and Buddhits also would have played a role in transferring
the human language into written form.
They were no believers of Vedas, though they drew their inputs from
The Jain books of Surya Pragnapti, Chandra pragnapti and Jambhoo dweepa Pragnapti
were all inspired by Vedantic notions and Mahabharatha only.
But to give an indigenous colour to it and to take it to the masses,
they introduced written libi for the human language.
The prakrit is thus a development of post-Mahabharatha period (of Kali yuga)
and the development it further underwent is
what we have as many languages of
Coming to Tamil, it is a totally different one
in that it came up from Dakshin Bhoomi.
It could have been the oldest language spoken in the Arya vartha of olden times,
prior to the formation of Himayalas,
when Aryavartha was surrounded by seas on all four sides.
It could have been the ‘human bhasha’ of the previous Arya vartha.
The Shiva cult, the Muruga cult and festivals that were so distinct to
Southern hemisphere and Dakshinayana period
make me think that the Tamil culture had its origins
in the south of the equator.
But the Tamils were different from the Asuras of south,
or they could have been from the Yakshas of the South.
But what ever it be, they are not and can not be Dravidas
that present day politicians think they are.
- Rama Setu, Vedic Traditions and struggle to protect the world heritage
Rama Setu is an abiding cultural tradition of not only Bharatam but of many countries of the world. Rama Setu embodies the quintessence of Valmiki's statement: 'Ramo vigrahavaan dharmah.' Setubandhanam becomes a tirthasthanam in the Vedic tradition of remembering the pitr-s and offering pitr-tarpanam on Ashadha amavasya day every year. The ongoing struggle to protect this world heritage has been long, protracted and tough. Active support of world citizens will make a difference and this struggle to protect an abiding, sanatana tradition will succeed. Rama Setu tradition is a continuum of Vedic traditions defining dharma in action. Two messages are conveyed in such a definition: 1. determination and samarthyam can find solutions even to bridge the ocean; 2. to establish dharma and to fight against a-dharma, the effort is imperative. Skandapurana is emphatic that three s'ivalingas were installed by Sri Rama, one at Rameshwaram (Dhanushkodi end), one at Tirukkedeeshwaram (Talaimannar end) and the third in the middle of the Setu. Setubandhanam becomes a tirthasthanam in the Vedic tradition of remembering the pitr-s and offering pitr-tarpanam on Ashadha amavasya day every year. http://www.scribd.com/doc
2. Ongoing attack on Hindu symbols:
Vedic Sarasvati river, ancestor worship, svastika
The discovery of over 2000 archaeological sites on the banks of Vedic River Sarasvati and the possibility of identifying Vedic people from new discoveries such as those in Bhirrana provide a challenge to all researchers to unravel the language spoken by the creators of the Sarasvati civilization. There is an ongoing attack from some in Western academia, on Hindu symbols including svastika and the denial of the Vedic River Sarasvati whose ancient channels have been emphatically, scientifically identified. This state of academic denial is pathetic and is governed by a compulsive motive to establish Aryan supremacy through invasion or migration scenarios. Such Aryan Invasion/Migration Theories are in fact the myths. Sarasvati is not a myth but a reality and will flow again in North-west India thanks to the brilliant effort of scholars, researchers, scientists and engineers of Hindusthana. http://www.scribd.com/doc
3: Sarasvati, Vedic language and cultural traditions
The discovery of over 2000 archaeological sites on the banks of Vedic River Sarasvati and the possibility of identifying Vedic people from new discoveries such as those in Bhirrana provide a challenge to all researchers to unravel the language spoken by the creators of the Sarasvati civilization. I have posited that mleccha was the lingua franca and mlecchita vikalpa was the writing system of the civilization evidenced by nearly 4000 epigraphs containing 'signs' and 'pictorial motifs' -- most of which are hieroglyphs. The resource of an Indian Lexicon providing comparative lexemes from over 25 ancient languages of Bharatam including Vedic provide a framework for testing the mleccha spoken by Yudhisthira in his conversations with Khanaka and Vidura and the mlecchita vikalpa mentioned by Vatsyayana as one of the three arts: 1. des'a bhaashaa jnaanam; 2. akshara mushthika kathanam; and 3. mlecchita vikalpat (correctly interpreted as cryptography). Given the fact that many mleccha word occur in the Vedic texts (words which cannot be explained by Indo-European constructs), it is possible to provide a framework for language studies of ancient Bharatam and of Vedic times, which integrate language as a medium of cultural expression by a community of speakers, rejecting the language family metaphor. Many ancient texts clearly refer to mleccha as a 'language' or 'dialect'. The framework for a Sarasvati Hieroglyph Dictionary was presented. http://www.scribd.com/doc