The Rig Veda

Reading Year: 2023
Book # 14
Great Books
Pages: 297
Translation by Wendy Doniger
Version: Penguin Classics
Year: 1500 BC
Date Started: April 24, 2023
Date Finished: May 13, 2023
5h 41m 14s

My Thoughts

I had a hard time with the Rig Veda and this Penguin Classics version didn’t help much in my understanding. I actually stopped reading this a few pages in and moved over to “The Hindus” by Wendy Doniger (the translator of this Rig Veda) in order to obtain a background and try to figure out what was happening. For example, what was the purpose of the Rig Veda, how was it compiled, who are the gods, etc.

Once I got my bearings, it became a little more understandable. The Vedas are a set of hymns/verses. There are 1,028 total and Wendy Doniger includes 108 in this translation and they are arranged by topic (creation, death, soma, women, etc.). I really enjoyed the ones dealing with myths and epics. Wendy Doniger included a good number of notes per hymn, so that was helpful.

In all, this is a hard one to grasp if you are coming in cold. I recommend reading another book like The Hindus (the first third of the book) to get a background about the Rig Veda before diving in.

Ancillary Books & Further Reading

The Hindus
The Hindus
Additional Reading

Additional Resources

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