Rig Veda laid stress on giving, Greek scholar reminds Chennaiites
Chennai, 28 Feb. 2011, Express News Service
THE Rig Veda of the fifth century BC laid stress on dhaanam (giving) as the important feature of the Kali Yuga, said Prof Nicholas Kaz a n a s, re n ow n e d G re e k scholar in vedic studies.
Stress on giving could be found in several Hindu texts, from the Brihadaranyaka Upanishads to Manusmriti and Bhagavad Gita, he said.
He was delivering a lecture on the Vedic civilisation at Dwaraka Doss Govardhan Viashnav College on Sunday.
While there were several similarities between the Rig Veda and ancient texts of other religions, the speaker noted that the Rig Veda was distinct for stressing on nonmaterialistic life, while other philosophies were materialistic. The ideas expressed by Plato, about the activities to be carried out by people, matched that of what the Rig Veda proposed: engage in agriculture, trade, singing hymns, eat and drink moderately, he explained. And it was also easy to point out that the five regulations prescribed by the Rig Veda -ahimsa, sathya, asteya, brahmacharya and aparig raha -could be mapped with five of the Ten Commandments of Christianity, he revealed.
Speaking about the several problems faced by the world today, he said it was wrong for man to depend too much on technology.
Recent research had shown that when youngsters in 1970 Germany could identify 350 colours, youngsters in 2002 could identify only 130. Man regresses as technology progresses, he observed.
Also present at the event was P Haridas, secretary of the college.