Questions tagged [scripture]

For questions about the holy texts of Hinduism. Please also use a more specific tag (e.g. [vishnu-purana]) if possible.

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What are some online sources to get unabridged Hindu Scriptures or to learn Hinduism?

What are some good websites to find unabridged versions of Hindu Scriptures and to learn Hinduism (with proper interpretations)? Also, see: Where can I find/get basic information about Hinduism on ...
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25 votes
3 answers
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How to read Hindu Scriptures

Ok, I understand there are lot of Hindu scriptures. How to read them? I wish to read them for meditation to gain wisdom/knowledge raise positive vibrational energy but most importantly break out ...
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26 votes
4 answers
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Complete English translations of Puranas

Some English translations of Puranas can be found online here: Vishnu purana (a) Garuda purana (abridged) (b) Garuda purana (full) Bagavata Purana (a) Shiva Purana (b) Online proofread edition Linga ...
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22 votes
1 answer
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Is there any scripture that tells story about Lord Vishnu and MahaVishnu?

As per the Shiva Purana, there is a main God Shiva who is Nirakara and thereafter his physical manifestation who is known as Shankara. I know that different Hindu texts about different Gods treat ...
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9 votes
1 answer
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Whose commentaries on the Vedas and Upanishads are most followed?

There are many people who write commentaries on the Vedas, Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita etc. Whose commentaries is most followed. Also where can I get all of those Upanishads and Vedas in English? ...
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12 votes
2 answers
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What are Five Layers (Pancha Kosha) of Human?

While going through I found scriptures depicting about Pancha Kosha, suggesting the Atman is not just inside the physical body but is actually wrapped up in these Five Kosha. What are these Pancha ...
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23 votes
5 answers
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What are the Agama scriptures? Are they related to Shruti/Vedas?

I know that Hindu scriptures classified as Shruti and Smriti but don't know much about Aagama. I would like to know about Agama Scripture: What are the Agama Scriptures? Are they related to Vedas? ...
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23 votes
4 answers
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Can a Sudra become a Brahmin in 'this' birth?

Scriptures have remedy for everything. Various mantras various austerities can give us miraculous position. For eg. It is possible to become Indra (who is King of Heaven) by performing 100 Ashwamedha ...
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21 votes
7 answers
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What is difference between Shruti and Smriti?

The Hindu texts are classified in Shruti (श्रुति) and Smriti (स्मृति). I want to know: What is the difference between Shruti and Smriti? What scriptures are included in Shruti & in Smriti?
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2 answers
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What are the Vedas technically? How can Upanishads be called Vedas when some parts are neither revelations nor hymns dedicated to any specific deity?

It is believed that the Vedas are the revelations from the Almighty to the seers in exalted states of consciousness. Further, it is also believed that the Vedas are authorless. Keeping these ...
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26 votes
6 answers
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What were the ages of Pandavas & other characters during the Mahabharata war?

I have not found any specific reference to the age of each of the Pandavas, like Arjuna and Bheema when they fought the epic Mahabharata battle. It will be also interesting to know the age of Bhishma ...
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37 votes
3 answers
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Reference to the 7 chakras in Hinduism

Where are the details about the 7 chakras mentioned in Hindu scriptures? What is their significance?
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17 votes
8 answers
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What are the exact ten avatars of Vishnu?

I know that there are many avatars of Vishnu but some say that the famous Dashavatar include lord Buddha (Wiki) and some say as Balarama (hinduism.about.com). but Mohini avatar is not considered as ...
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26 votes
8 answers
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What are the Hindu scriptures which every Hindu should abide by?

In Christianity, one has the holy Bible and in Islam one has the holy Quran. Which scriptures should a Hindu always follow? Which scripture can a Hindu look up for references?
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21 votes
1 answer
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What names of Lord Shiva used today are from Vedas?

Generally people have a severe misconception that Shiva is represented by the name 'Rudra' only in Vedas. Various names used today used for Lord Shiva are from Vedas. Some names are only in Puranas ...
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15 votes
2 answers
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Does "Free Will" really exist, even if universe repeats itself in perfect pattern?

The concept of universe repeating itself is similar to philosophy of Eternal Return. Such philosophy is subscribed many ancient Indian philosophers as well. In brief: A finitely timed universe ...
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32 votes
3 answers
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What is the story behind the Brahmasthra? Was it actually ever fired?

In different Puranas there are mentions of the Brahmasthra which is one of the powerful weapons capable of destroying the whole world. I have seen usually in Purana TV serials, these astras (arrows) ...
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16 votes
2 answers
2k views

Which Vedic verses describe Indra as Brahman?

Which Vedic verses describe Indra as Brahman? Or as creator of universe or as source of universe or as someone who pervades whole universe?
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21 votes
4 answers
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Who are Pancha brahmas' Lalita Devi sits on and Why are they called so?

Lalita Sahasranama(the thousand names of Lalitha tripura Sundari) is a hymn found in the Uttara Khanda of Brahmanda Purana. In the Lalitha sahasranama, one of the names is Pañcabrahmāsanasthitā ...
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12 votes
2 answers
775 views

What are the valid and foolproof methods of determining whether a certain scripture is interpolated or not?

It is believed that certain Hindu Scriptures (specially portions of some of the Puranas) were interpolated on a date much after its original creation. Such interpolated texts are often used by small ...
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23 votes
3 answers
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Why is Lord Shiva called Pashupati? Who are the Pashus?

Pashu means those whose which are tied and thus Pashupati literally means Lord of those which are tied. Pashu also means Cattles/Animals, and Pashupati also means Lord of Animals The name PashuPati ...
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26 votes
6 answers
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Are there other Brahmas and universes?

Lord Brahma is said to be the creator of Earth but what about other planets? Who created them? I have heard that for every planet there is a creator like Brahma. I have also seen an incident in ...
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45 votes
3 answers
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Does Hinduism forbid sexual intercourse before marriage?

Well, I think the Indian society is very orthodox and can't generally accept things like an unmarried girl walking with or talking to a boy. So is an unmarried girl or boy having sexual intercourse ...
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20 votes
1 answer
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Why did Lord Shiva take 44 avatars if his primary role is to be the destroyer?

Lord Maha Vishnu is the protector of whole universe and he said that he will take avatars whenever there is degradation of righteousness on this planet. Famous dashavatars are the avatars of Lord ...
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18 votes
2 answers
3k views

What exactly is a leela (लीला)? Is there a scriptural definition of leela (लीला)?

When people cannot logically explain certain actions of Gods, their incarnations, Saints, Ṛṣis etc., they often use the term leela which is sometimes spelled as līlā and lIlA. I think the word ...
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11 votes
5 answers
4k views

I want scripture-based explanation for "God is Everywhere"

Most dominant philosophy in Hinduism is that God is everywhere and in everything. I want to understand this in more detail. As per science we know that around us there are two distinct things: Space-...
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15 votes
2 answers
671 views

Is there any mention of boon deadlock in scriptures?

Gods give boons to different people based on what they ask but what if Person A gets a boon that he will kill everyone he wars against in the next 10 years. Person B gets a boon that he cannot be ...
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5 votes
1 answer
476 views

What is the story of Somanath Jyotirlinga?

Lord Shiva has been worshipped in linga form from time beginning as described in answer here. Godesses Saraswati in Linga Purana states: सर्वं लिंगमयं लोकं सर्वं लिंगे प्रतिष्ठितम् । तस्मात्सर्वं परि...
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17 votes
4 answers
5k views

What are 16 shastras?

I learned from internet that there are 16 shastras, But I didn't find valid source for list of those shastras. Can you tell me please the what are those 16 shastras? Are there any upa-shastras (sub-...
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8 votes
0 answers
2k views

Is the Satvata Samhita, the oldest Pancharatra text, available online in English?

Before the time of the sage Vyasa, people had a very different understanding of which gods were important than the understanding we have today. The Vedic mantras had not yet been compiled into the ...
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16 votes
3 answers
3k views

Which famous quotes are wrongly attributed to Bhagavad Gita? [closed]

There are many famous sayings, found in Facebook, WhatsApp & other social media, which are wrongly linked to Bhagavad Gita. Purpose of this Qn is to link all the duplicates in one place. Meta ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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What is the story of Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga?

Lord Shiva has been worshipped in Linga form from time beginning as described in answer here. Among the Lingas there are 12 Jyotirlingas which are of special importance. Mahatmya of 12 Jyotirlingas is ...
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18 votes
4 answers
31k views

Do Hindus believe in Adam and Eve? If not, who is the first person (man or woman) in this world?

Does any Hindu scripture mention anything about Adam and Eve? According to Hinduism, who is the first person (man or woman) in this world?
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12 votes
2 answers
1k views

What is the Yogic meaning of getting liberation by reaching Varanasi?

Varanasi which is also known by the name Kashi is one of the the most sacred place. It is also known as Avimukta which means which is never forsaken by Shiva. अविमुक्तं स्वयं लिङ्गं स्थापितं परमा...
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14 votes
2 answers
1k views

What are the meditation techniques found in the scriptures?

There is so much emphasis on Meditation in Hinduism. Can common meditation techniques of today be traced to scriptural sources? I have heard through word of mouth that Transcendental Meditation ...
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15 votes
1 answer
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What are the eight forms (Ashtamurti) of Lord Shiva?

Lord Shiva pervades the entire universe through various forms like that of Ekadasha Rudra, or PanchaBrahma and also through Ashtamurti form. Lord Shiva is also called by the name Ashta Murti, for eg. ...
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14 votes
1 answer
1k views

Where does Rig Veda states about Cyclical Nature of Creation?

It is a common belief in Hinduism that the nature of creation is cyclic. Continuous creation and destruction happens in certain intervals of time. Most of such ideas are found in Puranas and also in ...
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31 votes
6 answers
3k views

What is the basis for worshipping Sai Baba? Are there are references to him in the Vedas or other Vedic literature?

Recently, Dwarka Shankaracharya, Swami Swaroopanand Saraswati stirred controversy by claiming that since Shirdi Sai was a human and that there are no mention of him any Hindu scripture, he shouldn't ...
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24 votes
4 answers
5k views

Time travel in Hindu scripture

A text says that a king named Kakudmi time-traveled in a two-way trip (Earth ⇒ Brahmaloka and Brahmaloka ⇒ Earth). It also says that there is a difference in frequency of times at different places in ...
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15 votes
3 answers
3k views

What do Hindu scriptures say about Hindu temples?

Yes or No Questions: Do Hindu scriptures say that we should build temples? (Yes | No) If I go to Lord Shiva's and Lord Hanuman's temple, but I also have the deities at home temple (puja mandir), can ...
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9 votes
1 answer
792 views

What is the story of Kasi Vishwanatha Jyotirlinga?

Lord Shiva has been worshipped in Linga form from time beginning as described in answer here. Among the Lingas there are 12 Jyotirlingas which are of special importance. Mahatmya of 12 Jyotirlingas is ...
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6 votes
1 answer
5k views

What is the story of Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga?

Lord Shiva has been worshipped in Linga form from time beginning as described in answer here. Among the Lingas there are 12 Jyotirlingas which are of special importance. Mahatmya of 12 Jyotirlingas is ...
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4 votes
1 answer
1k views

What is the story of Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga?

Lord Shiva has been worshipped in Linga form from time beginning as described in answer here. Among the Lingas there are 12 Jyotirlingas which are of special importance. Mahatmya of 12 Jyotirlingas is ...
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10 votes
3 answers
6k views

Clarification regarding adultery, extra-marital relations

Apologies if this seems a very sensitive issue but can you please help me understand what is considered an adultery? If married male and female partners have mutually agreed and happy to have extra-...
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13 votes
3 answers
12k views

In Hinduism, what exactly is a lie? And is lying adharma?

I would like to know what is considered a lie in Hinduism? Sometimes we speak good but we speak the same thing in a different way which appears as a lie to the listener but it's not really a lie. In ...
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6 votes
1 answer
3k views

What is the story of Rameshwaram Jyotirlinga?

Lord Shiva has been worshipped in Linga form from time beginning as described in answer here. Among the Lingas there are 12 Jyotirlingas which are of special importance. Mahatmya of 12 Jyotirlingas is ...
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5 votes
1 answer
2k views

What is the story of Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga?

Lord Shiva has been worshipped in Linga form from time beginning as described in answer here. Among the Lingas there are 12 Jyotirlingas which are of special importance. Mahatmya of 12 Jyotirlingas is ...
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49 votes
5 answers
12k views

Are there any references to Gravity in Hindu Scriptures?

Are there any references to Gravity or any fundamental forces in Hindu Scriptures viz. Vedas, Upanishands and Puranas or any Scientific Vedic Scriptures?
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31 votes
8 answers
12k views

Vedas and Vedic dharma on homosexuality

This link describes that the Vedas have no problem with homosexuality: In contemporary India LGBT people face discrimination and marginalization. This results from cultural attitudes imposed by the ...
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16 votes
6 answers
2k views

Any references where varna/caste is determined independent of birth/parentage?

Is there any incidence or statement in the scriptures which shows that varna/caste was not deduced from birth/parentage, and was deduced only from "qualities independent of parentage"(without ...
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