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Lord Shiva destroys the entire Universe when the Mahakalpa ends. Brahma too attains Moksha in that pralaya.

Vedas in their personal form are also present in Brahmaloka along with Brahma. For eg. Hayagriva Asura stole the Vedas from Brahmaloka and took them to Patala and thus Lord Vishnu took Hayagriva incarnation and again restored them.

But as the BrahmaLoka itself gets destroyed during the Mahakalpa, how do the Vedas survive then? As Vedas are eternal how do they manage to survive? (for instance we say new Brahma comes after Mahakalpa but we do not say new Vedas come after Mahakalpa ie. The Vedas are eternal). How do they survive the Mahapralya performed by Lord Shiva at the end of Mahakalpa?

  • How about ShvetaShvatar Upanishad 6.18? – Paṇḍyā Dec 18 '16 at 10:27
  • @Pandya yes, it is same " who in the beginning created Brahma and delivered the Vedas to Him." In that chapter (answer) latter Lord Shiva gives Panchakshara mantra through his 5 heads to 5 heads of Brahma.. (5 syllable).. It is actually giving Vedas... – Tejaswee Dec 18 '16 at 11:41
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    Kashi too eternal. Right? – Mr. Sigma. Feb 17 '17 at 16:37
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    @Seeker Yes, Kashi doesn't gets destroyed in Kalpantaka Pralaya.. I also discuss it in my answer here. – Tejaswee Feb 17 '17 at 16:43
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During the time of dissolution Lord Shiva doesn't destroys the Vedas because they enter the Panchakshari Mantra (Nama Shivaya) and thus Lord Shiva graces on them.

In the Linga Purana Chapter 85 "Glory of Panchakshara Mantra" Lord Shiva states to Godesses Parvati:

प्रलये समनुप्राप्ते नष्टे स्थावरजंगमे ।
नष्टे देवासुरे चैव नष्टे चोरगराक्षसे ।।
सर्वं प्रकृतिमापन्नं त्वया प्रलयमेष्यति ।
एकोहं संस्थितो देवी न द्वितियोस्ति कुत्रचित् ।।

During the time of dissolution, when all the mobile and immobile beings, the Gods and Asuras, Nagas and Rakshasas get destroyed and O godesses, all the things including you yourself get absorbed in the Prakriti then only I remain in the Universe. None else remain on earth.

Then, Lord Shiva states:

तस्मिन्वेदाश्च शास्त्राणि मंत्रे पञ्चाक्षरे स्थिताः
ते नाशं नैव संप्राप्ता मच्छक्त्या ह्यनुपालिताः ।।

At that point of time, the Vedas enter into the Panchakshari Mantra and they do not get destroyed because of my grace.

Thus Vedas survive themselves by entering in the Panchakshari Mantra and thus Lord Shiva graces on them.

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    "Vedas enter into the Panchakshari Mantra" -- is this like some compression? E,g. gzip or tar s/w. So who ever knows the Panchakshari Mantra can retrieve the Vedas from it? Also, how does the Panchakshari Mantra itself survive? :) – sv. Dec 18 '16 at 7:13
  • @sv. As the Panchakshari Mantra is also present in Veda (YajurVeda 16th chapter) so it is easy for Vedas to enter in it.. entering means entering in subtle sense.. Vedas are present in personal form in Brahmaloka.. and they take refugee to Panchaksahri... Panchakshari mantra survives because Destroyer is Lord Shiva himself and Panchakshari Mantra is "Namaha Shivaya".. so he graces upon it.. Yes, during the next Mahakalpa 5 headed Brahma comes out of Navel of Narayana.. and thus Lord Shiva through his 5 faces again transfers 5 syllables to 5 heads of Brahma.. it is described in latter verses.. – Tejaswee Dec 18 '16 at 7:24
  • Ok, maybe you can update your answer with "How does the Panchakshari Mantra itself survive dissolution of the Universe?" – sv. Dec 18 '16 at 7:27
  • I think 'they' = 'Vedas' not the Panchakshari Mantra. If you can send me a link to doc. I can take a look. – sv. Dec 18 '16 at 7:39
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    @sv. Yes.. they = Vedas there.. but they have entered Panchakshari.. so Lord Shiva is telling that as they enter Panchakshari he graces them and so doesn't destroy them.. here is link...i.stack.imgur.com/jwgpv.png see in the Vedanta and Philosophy chatroom for further images... – Tejaswee Dec 18 '16 at 8:14
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By the Vedas are meant the eternal truths. It does not mean that the 'exact' words or text, what it means is the ideas conveyed by them. In any given cycle, the words may be different but the eternal truths revealed by them are the same.

The first mundaka verses 1-6 of the Mundaka Upanishad (I. i. 1-6) tells of the vedas coming from Brahman, their teaching by Brahma, and their division into two kinds of knowledge; the higher knowledge which teaches the Knowledge of Brahman (Upanishads), and the lower knowledge which teaches the rituals, mantras, etc. (Rig, Yajur, Sama, Atharva) and various other sciences.

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    Yes, Vedas are eternal truths.. but I think Veda Samhita are eternal as word to word... – Tejaswee Dec 18 '16 at 13:33
  • Swamiji, as said by Tezz, Veda Samhitas are eternal truths word to word. – The Destroyer Feb 20 '17 at 10:08
  • @TheDestroyer Well, Swami Vivekananda would disagree with Tezz (see his Complete Works V3, p 457, lecture 'The Religion We are Born In'. Also Prof. Chandradhar Sharma (Banaras Hindu University and then Chair of Philosophy at University of Jabalpur) says: 'The word shruti primarily refers to the Truth or reality which is revealed and secondarily to the text in which this revelation is recorded. In the primary sense shruti is identical with the Real and as the Real is impersonal and eternal, so is sruti... – Swami Vishwananda Feb 20 '17 at 13:23
  • @TheDestroyer ...In the secondary sense , of course, the text which records this spiritual experience is conditioned by time, space, and personality.' That which is conditioned by time, space, etc. is non-eternal. So in the primary sense they are eternal, but in the secondary sense they are not. – Swami Vishwananda Feb 20 '17 at 13:24
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The Vedas are not a bunch of hymns or mantras. They are the subtle disturbances in the infinite void that give rise to the (macro- and micro-) universe of dualities. Really and truly, they are nothing but the law of karma (or the samskaras and impressions accumulated over the course of existence, if you will) realized as such, from a place (actually a non-place) where karma does not apply. You can even think of as it as occupying a body that is free of any of the "marks" left on the "outer" bodies which interact with the phenomenal universe.

At that point of time, the Vedas enter into the Panchakshari Mantra and they do not get destroyed because of my grace.

What is meant here is simply that by meditation on the panchakshari mantra (which exercise culminates in fusion with said mantra) one transcends the world of dualities (mantra and meditator).

In this sense, the meditator can be said to fuse with the infinite void and there is no difference between the two. That is what it means to attain the Vedas, and why the Vedas must be eternal. The very existence of (the concept of) existence presupposes the Vedas, for without any eddies in the infinite void, without any subtle disturbances in Mind, the phenomenal universe would not obtain. This is sometimes expressed in the hierarchical relationship between manas, chitta, buddhi, etc.

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    Is this an answer or comment on one of the answers? – sv. Dec 19 '16 at 1:16
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Vedas should not be confused as books. They are revelations or knowledge attained by evolved people. Veda is also referred as a synonym to the brahman. The fact that the word brahma refers to the vedas and vice-versa can be inferred from innumerable mantras of the vedas

“yena devA apunata| tena divyena brahmaNA | idaM brahma punImahe|” (Y.V) “mahimAnamagnervihitasya brahmaNA” (A.V. 18-4-8) “gAtrANi te brahmaNA kalpayAmi” (A.V. 18-4-52)

The above verses are but a few examples which reveal that brahma is the name for vedas.

This shows that as brahman is eternal, same way the veda or knowledge is also eternal.

Secondly, the story of some demon stealing the vedas to Paataala should not be taken literally. Vedas is a knowledge which cannot be stolen.

Thirdly, there is no DESTRUCTION of this universe but laya, dissolution. The whole expanded universe is again withdrawn back to its original source. Hemce technically nothing gets destroyed.

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