Composed primarily in Sanskrit , but also in Tamil and other Indian languages,   several of these texts are named after major Hindu deities such as Vishnu, Shiva, Brahma and Shakti. The Puranic literature is encyclopedic,  and it includes diverse topics such as cosmogony , cosmology , genealogies of gods, goddesses, kings, heroes, sages, and demigods, folk tales, pilgrimages, temples, medicine, astronomy, grammar, mineralogy, humor, love stories, as well as theology and philosophy. They have been influential in the Hindu culture , inspiring major national and regional annual festivals of Hinduism. The Chaitanya school also rejects outright any monistic interpretation of the purana.
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Composed primarily in Sanskrit , but also in Tamil and other Indian languages,   several of these texts are named after major Hindu deities such as Vishnu, Shiva, Brahma and Shakti. The Puranic literature is encyclopedic,  and it includes diverse topics such as cosmogony , cosmology , genealogies of gods, goddesses, kings, heroes, sages, and demigods, folk tales, pilgrimages, temples, medicine, astronomy, grammar, mineralogy, humor, love stories, as well as theology and philosophy.
They have been influential in the Hindu culture , inspiring major national and regional annual festivals of Hinduism. The Chaitanya school also rejects outright any monistic interpretation of the purana.
The Puranic literature wove with the Bhakti movement in India, and both Dvaita and Advaita scholars have commented on the underlying Vedantic themes in the Maha Puranas. Vyasa , the narrator of the Mahabharata , is hagiographically credited as the compiler of the Puranas. The ancient tradition suggests that originally there was but one Purana.
Vishnu Purana 3. These three, together with Lomaharshana's, comprise the Mulasamhita , from which the later eighteen Puranas were derived. The term Purana appears in the Vedic texts. He changed his place and went over to great direction, and Itihasa and Purana, gathas, verses in praise of heroes followed in going over.
Similarly, the Shatapatha Brahmana XI. However, states P. Kane, it is not certain whether these texts suggested several works or single work with the term Purana. Therefore, states Kane, that in the later Vedic period at least, the Puranas referred to three or more texts, and that they were studied and recited  In numerous passages the Mahabharata mentions ' Purana ' in both singular and plural forms.
Moreover, it is not unlikely that, where the singular ' Puranam ' was employed in the texts, a class of works was meant. Another early mention of the term 'Itihas-purana' is found in the Chandogya Upanishad 7. According to Thomas Coburn, Puranas and early extra-puranic texts attest to two traditions regarding their origin, one proclaiming a divine origin as the breath of the Great Being, the other as a human named Vyasa as the arranger of already existing material into eighteen Puranas.
In the early references, states Coburn, the term Purana occurs in singular unlike the later era which refers to a plural form presumably because they had assumed their "multifarious form". While both these traditions disagree on the origins of the Puranas, they affirm that extant Puranas are not identical with the original Purana. According to the Indologists J.
These texts were collected for the "second time between the fourth and sixth centuries A. It is not possible to set a specific date for any Purana as a whole, states Ludo Rocher. He points out that even for the better established and more coherent puranas such as Bhagavata and Vishnu, the dates proposed by scholars continue to vary widely and endlessly. Pargiter believed the "original Purana" may date to the time of the final redaction of the Vedas. She dates Markandeya Purana to c. The Mahapuranas have also been classified based on a specific deity, although the texts are mixed and revere all gods and goddesses:.
The Padma Purana , Uttara Khanda The difference between Upapuranas and Mahapuranas has been explained by Rajendra Hazra as, "a Mahapurana is well known, and that what is less well known becomes an Upapurana". The Upapuranas are eighteen in number, with disagreement as to which canonical titles belong in that list of eighteen.
The Ganesha and Mudgala Puranas are devoted to Ganesha. This corpus of texts tells of the origins and traditions of particular Tamil Shiva temples or shrines. There are numerous Sthala Puranas, most written in vernaculars , some with Sanskrit versions as well. The Shiva Sthalams of the continent have puranas for each, famously glorified in the Tamil literature Tevaram. Some appear in Sanskrit versions in the Mahapuranas or Upapuranas.
The Skanda Purana is the largest Purana with 81, verses,  named after deity Skanda , the son of Shiva and Uma, and brother of deity Ganesha. The Skanda Purana has received renewed scholarly interest ever since the late 20th-century discovery of a Nepalese Skanda Purana manuscript dated to be from the early 9th century. This discovery established that Skanda Purana existed by the 9th century.
However, a comparison shows that the 9th-century document is entirely different from versions of Skanda Purana that have been circulating in South Asia since the colonial era. Several Puranas, such as the Matsya Purana,  list "five characteristics" or "five signs" of a Purana. A few Puranas, such as the most popular Bhagavata Purana, add five more characteristics to expand this list to ten: . These five or ten sections weave in biographies, myths, geography, medicine, astronomy, Hindu temples, pilgrimage to distant real places, rites of passage, charity, ethics,  duties, rights, dharma, divine intervention in cosmic and human affairs, love stories,  festivals, theosophy and philosophy.
It starts with introduction, a future devotee is described as ignorant about the god yet curious, the devotee learns about the god and this begins the spiritual realization, the text then describes instances of God's grace which begins to persuade and convert the devotee, the devotee then shows devotion which is rewarded by the god, the reward is appreciated by the devotee and in return performs actions to express further devotion.
The Puranas, states Flood, document the rise of the theistic traditions such as those based on Vishnu, Shiva and the goddess Devi and include respective mythology, pilgrimage to holy places, rituals and genealogies. Along with inconsistencies, common ideas are found throughout the corpus but it is not possible to trace the lines of influence of one Purana upon another so the corpus is best viewed as a synchronous whole. The story features Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva, the three major deities of Hinduism, who get together, debate, and after various versions of the story, in the end the glory of Shiva is established by the apparition of linga.
This story, state Bonnefoy, and Doniger, appears in Vayu Purana 1. The texts are in Sanskrit as well as regional languages,   and almost entirely in narrative metric couplets. The texts use ideas, concepts and even names that are symbolic.
The myth is as follows,. These were the sons of Dharma ; one of whom, Kama love, emotional fulfillment had baby Hersha joy by his wife Nandi delight. These are all called the inflictors of misery, and are characterised as the progeny of Vice Adharma. They are all without wives, without posterity, without the faculty to procreate; they perpetually operate as causes of the destruction of this world. On the contrary, Daksha and the other Rishis, the elders of mankind, tend perpetually to influence its renovation: whilst the Manus and their sons, the heroes endowed with mighty power, and treading in the path of truth, as constantly contribute to its preservation.
The relation of the Puranas with Vedas has been debated by scholars, some holding that there's no relationship, others contending that they are identical. Some scholars such as Govinda Das suggest that the Puranas claim a link to the Vedas but in name only, not in substance. The link is purely a mechanical one.
Ramaswami Sastri and Manilal N. Dvivedi reflect the third view which states that Puranas enable us to know the "true import of the ethos, philosophy, and religion of the Vedas".
Agrawala, intend to "explicate, interpret, adapt" the metaphysical truths in the Vedas. The Puranas, states Kees Bolle, are best seen as "vast, often encyclopedic" works from ancient and medieval India. The colonial era scholars of Puranas studied them primarily as religious texts, with Vans Kennedy declaring in , that any other use of these documents would be disappointing.
Holwell, states Urs App, "presented it as the opinion of knowledgeable Indians; But it is abundantly clear that no knowledgeable Indian would ever have said anything remotely similar". Modern scholarship doubts this 19th-century premise. I want to stress the fact that it would be irresponsible and highly misleading to speak of or pretend to describe the religion of the Puranas.
The study of Puranas as a religious text remains a controversial subject. The Jaina Puranas are like Hindu Puranas encyclopedic epics in style, and are considered as anuyogas expositions , but they are not considered Jain Agamas and do not have scripture or quasi-canonical status in Jainism tradition. Scholars have debated whether the Puranas should be categorized as sectarian, or non-partisan, or monotheistic religious texts. Further, most Puranas emphasize legends around one who is either Shiva, or Vishnu, or Devi.
However, states Edwin Bryant, while these legends sometimes appear to be partisan, they are merely acknowledging the obvious question of whether one or the other is more important, more powerful. In the final analysis, all Puranas weave their legends to celebrate pluralism, and accept the other two and all gods in Hindu pantheon as personalized form but equivalent essence of the Ultimate Reality called Brahman.
The term monotheism, if applied to the Puranic tradition, needs to be understood in the context of a supreme being, whether understood as Vishnu, Shiva or Devi, who can manifest himself or herself as other supreme beings.
Ludo Rocher, in his review of Puranas as sectarian texts, states, "even though the Puranas contain sectarian materials, their sectarianism should not be interpreted as exclusivism in favor of one god to the detriment of all others". Despite the diversity and wealth of manuscripts from ancient and medieval India that have survived into the modern times, there is a paucity of historical data in them.
This paucity tempted 19th-century scholars to use the Puranas as a source of chronological and historical information about India or Hinduism. In early 20th-century, some regional records were found to be more consistent, such as for the Hindu dynasties in Telangana , Andhra Pradesh.
Basham, as well as Kosambi, have questioned whether lack of inconsistency is sufficient proof of reliability and historicity. The study of Puranas manuscripts has been challenging because they are highly inconsistent. Scholars have long acknowledged the existence of Purana manuscripts that "seem to differ much from printed edition", and it is unclear which one is accurate, and whether conclusions drawn from the randomly or cherrypicked printed version were universal over geography or time.
Modern scholarship noticed all these facts. It recognized that the extent of the genuine Agni Purana was not the same at all times and in all places, and that it varied with the difference in time and locality. This shows that the text of the Devi Purana was not the same everywhere but differed considerably in different provinces. Yet, one failed to draw the logical conclusion: besides the version or versions of Puranas that appear in our [surviving] manuscripts, and fewer still in our [printed] editions, there have been numerous other versions, under the same titles, but which either have remained unnoticed or have been irreparably lost.
Newly discovered Puranas manuscripts from the medieval centuries has attracted scholarly attention and the conclusion that the Puranic literature has gone through slow redaction and text corruption over time, as well as sudden deletion of numerous chapters and its replacement with new content to an extent that the currently circulating Puranas are entirely different from those that existed before 11th century, or 16th century.
For example, a newly discovered palm-leaf manuscript of Skanda Purana in Nepal has been dated to be from CE, but is entirely different from versions of Skanda Purana that have been circulating in South Asia since the colonial era. Rocher states that the date of the composition of each Purana remains a contested issue.
As they exist today, the Puranas are a stratified literature. Each titled work consists of material that has grown by numerous accretions in successive historical eras. Thus no Purana has a single date of composition. It is as if they were libraries to which new volumes have been continuously added, not necessarily at the end of the shelf, but randomly.
Many of the extant manuscripts were written on palm leaf or copied during the British India colonial era, some in the 19th century. Horace Hayman Wilson published one of the earliest English translations of one version of the Vishnu Purana in The most significant influence of the Puranas genre of Indian literature have been state scholars and particularly Indian scholars,  in "culture synthesis", in weaving and integrating the diverse beliefs from ritualistic rites of passage to Vedantic philosophy, from fictional legends to factual history, from individual introspective yoga to social celebratory festivals, from temples to pilgrimage, from one god to another, from goddesses to tantra, from the old to the new.
This, states Greg Bailey, may have allowed the Hindu culture to "preserve the old while constantly coming to terms with the new", and "if they are anything, they are records of cultural adaptation and transformation" over the last 2, years. The Puranic literature, suggests Khanna, influenced "acculturation and accommodation" of a diversity of people, with different languages and from different economic classes, across different kingdoms and traditions, catalyzing the syncretic "cultural mosaic of Hinduism".
Om Prakash states the Puranas served as efficient medium for cultural exchange and popular education in ancient and medieval India. The cultural influence of the Puranas extended to Indian classical arts, such as songs, dance culture such as Bharata Natyam in south India  and Rasa Lila in northeast India,  plays and recitations.
The myths, lunar calendar schedule, rituals and celebrations of major Hindu cultural festivities such as Holi , Diwali and Durga Puja are in the Puranic literature. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
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The Puranas are authoritative scriptures of the Hindu dharma. Vyasa, the narrator of the Mahabharata, is traditionally considered the compiler of the Puranas. The date of the production of the written texts does not define the date of origin of the Puranas. On one hand, they existed in some oral form before being written while at the same time, they have been incrementally modified well into the 16th century. Brahma Puranam. Vishnu Puranam. Siva Puranam.
TRANSLATION OF ASTADASA PURANAS SHOULD BE SPEED UP
Puranas - పురాణాలు