Durga suktam a hymn in mahnarayana upanishad- has only two mantras for devi Durga, one is a gayatri. You can read it's info here

The Arya samajis are claiming that the hymn is stolen-interpolated by "pauranic" people

Why couldn't ved vyasa add an actual sukta for devi Durga instead of using old mantras of other deities? Is this explained in any shakta purana, or work of vyasa?

  • Why are you relating it with veda vyasa ? Do arya samaj claim so ? Commented May 4, 2018 at 20:48
  • How is mahanarayana upanishad and vyasa linked with this question? It is more of an opinion based question Commented May 5, 2018 at 3:40
  • @RakeshJoshi vyasa edited the Vedas, so it's clear he edited Durga suktam.
    – Anisha
    Commented May 5, 2018 at 4:21
  • 1
    what actually you Mean by editing ? He just divided them and propagated it. Didn't change anything in it its content. Do arya samaj believe that vyasa did such editing ? Commented May 5, 2018 at 4:24
  • @RakeshJoshi the Durga suktam uses old mantras of agni, there is only one mantra for durga-even though its a revealed mantra they are claimimg it's interpolated by "pauranic" people, can you even question revealed mantras?
    – Anisha
    Commented May 5, 2018 at 5:09

2 Answers 2


First of all neo Hindus like Arya samajis who do not believe in traditional dates, and tradition that vyasa edited the Vedas claim such stupidities all the time. Anyway they claim many things to be interpolation which doesn't subscribe to their philosophy, it was dayanand who first said that Veda is only samhita, many neo Vedics have followed in his path. the writer of puranas and editor of veda are same no wonder you find mention of purana-itihasas, puranic dieties throughout explanatory parts of vedas.

They try to bring Vedas as far as from other hindu holy books. Next time someone claims this tell them that the editor has envisioned agni as energy of Durga, to remove obstacles, also the editor has not tried to hide it you can easily consider it as hymn to remove obstacles where goddess Durga and agni are prayed too together.

We cannot question the mantra of Durga suktam as it is revealed mantra with oldest Sanskrit language, ved vyasa only placed these mantras in books

tAm agni varnAm tapasA jvalantim, vairochanim karma-phalesu jushtAm, durgAm devim sharnam aham prapadye, sutari tarase namaha ||

●This is clear mention of female goddess durga

The gayatris were added by vyasa into his commentaries on samhitas/revealed mantras- upanishads and aranyakas, traditionally we believe them to be also sabda pramana, there was no puranic period as believed by westerners etc- the gayatris are there so we can crosscheck our scriptures. We can't claim anything to be interpolation as Vedas are passed down in most rigourous fashion, in same way the the ved vyasa edited it we have got it.

Furthermore the suktas like "Durga sukta" and "medha sukta" are not for dieties but rather for multiple dieties and prayers for metaphysical ideas, in medha sukta too Indra, ashvins are prayed for medha (intellligence) and in Durga sukta goddess durga and agni are prayed to remove obstacles (durga)

In "Durga suktam" Durga can either mean goddess Durga or hymn to remove obstacle- in dietic case agni becomes akin to power of goddess Durga, in case of considering it a hymn to remove obstacle- multiple deities are prayed to remove obstacles.

In medha sukta too, one can consider it dietic where goddess saraswati is prayed to as medha, or a hymn to God for bestowing medha (intelligence)

If you want you can add Durga gayatri to Durga suktam or the agni gayatri, or recite it without the gayatri, similarly, you can recite the medha sukta with saraswati gayatri or recite it just as hymn for intelligence, subject matter is more important than which diety is prayed here.

The puranas are considered commentaries on Vedas by trikaljnani vyasa, so the goddess Durga of puranas is same as the one in the hymn of Durga sukta.

If Arya samajis are questioning this mantra they are doing Veda ninda. their atheistic purana-tradition hating interpretations will lead them to hell. By questioning a revealed mantra which is for a "puranic" goddess Arya samajis are commiting blasphemy, in each successive world cycles the mantra is revealed, Veda mantras are eternal. By questioning apaurausheyata of the mantra they are questioning authority of Veda, that's what happens when we have tradition questioning neo Hindus. Of a puranic person interpolated it wouldn't he use Vedic bhasa somewhere else too? Vedic Sanskrit is language of revelation, so it's impossible to imitate which proves it's revealed mantra.

"Durga suktam" name symbolizes subject matter- "durgah"-obstacles, or "durga"-divinity who is hard to get. It's primary hymn to remove obstacles

"Medha suktam" name means intelligence, it's primary hymn to gain intelligence, or prayer for intelligence.


Different recensions of vedas have different mantras, mahanarayana upanishads give Durga suktam with 6 mantras to agni, one to goddess Durga

with many gayatris to other gods including Durga and agni you can use either of the gayatri mantras for Durga suktam where Durga means obstacles, As subject matter.

Also that does not mean that there is only one mantra for goddess Durga, most of the Vedas which were edited by vyasa has been lost to us now, it could very well be that there were other mantras in other parts of vedas or Khila bhagas which are lost to us now.

For example Shiva sankalpa sukta of yajur Veda has only one mantra in one recension of yajur Veda, but shiva Siva sankalpa in rig Veda khillani and other recension of yajurVeda have 26 mantras and 6 mantras respectively,

The 33rd chapter of Kanva recension of Yajur-veda contains only the first mantra.  The 34th chapter of the Vajasaneya recension has six. These are the most well known. Less known is the apocryphal version in the Khila-suktas of Rg-veda (Khila-sukta 33), containing 26 mantras.

let's say if the Khila bhaga and other recension was lost there would be only one mantra of Siva sankalpa, then some neo vedics/ Arya samajis would claim that it is interpolated by "pauranics" but that's false,as we have pramana for otherwise, as tradition says that Vedas are apaurausheya and the editor and writer of puranas is same. Arya samajis and other neo Vedics who have tried to claim Vedas by coming up with metaphorical manipulations- who don't even have faith that the dieties of vedas exist sprout such nonsense all the time. The puranas are commentary on Vedas so we have to accept whatever has come down in tradition.

It is very much likely that other recensions of vedas and Khila bhaga contained more mantras on devi Durga which are now lost, but we can't question the authority and sabda pramana of vedas and the pramanas of puranas and the sukta-mantra from Mahanarayana upanishad

There were some 1131 different shakhas of Vedas with their own brahmanams,aranyaka, upanishads which are now lost. We can't question any of what is left to us, because what's left to us can be also found parellely in other Veda shakhas even in larger amount.

The Vedas are passed down in most rigourous fashion the mantras in Durga suktam are in revealed language, thus the blasphemous Arya samajis sprout nonsense without realizing that all the gods of puranas and itihasas come in Vedas. They don't even have faith in the existence of gods of vedas.

One should not question/doubt tradition and scriptures.

  • Good.But why don't you also try to learn it and continue the legacy? Btw vyasa didn't edit or.change anything just rearranged it Commented May 8, 2018 at 3:48
  • Shiva sankalpa of yajurveda is.more than six mantras not only one... Commented May 8, 2018 at 3:50
  • @RakeshJoshi umm, I'm talking the kanwa recensions where there is only one mantra, the 6 and 25 mantras come in either different recension or khillani.
    – Anisha
    Commented May 8, 2018 at 4:01

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