Rig Vedis (vs) Yajur Vedis

S. V. Subrahmanian svs_shankara at HOTMAIL.COM
Tue Aug 1 14:25:38 CDT 2000

Shrimati Lataji wrote:

Upaakarma : This is observed on different days by the followers of the three
vedaas. The yajurvEdis observe it on
Sraavana pUrnima day and RigvEdis observe it in Shraavana maasa when the
shravana nakshatra is sighted.

What ever is said above is what is observed.  I am amplifying it a little
here.  Originally both Rig Vedis and Yajur Vedis both observed upAkarma on
the same day ie., on the month of srAvaNa.  As I observed in one my earlier
mails, the name of the month is derived from the naxatra in the month when
it is pUrNimA.  So the month was named SrAvaNa is named after that month
when the moon reaches the full moon stage in the naxatra SravaNa.

But if you observe, the moon in the month of srAvaNa is full moon in
sraviSta(called dhaniSta in north), the naxatra next to sravaNa.  This is
because of the change in the earth's axis which is constantly shifting but
discernible once in many thousands of years.  Originally during the the time
when the rituals were formalized, the full moon used to be in sravaNa, but
due to spatial changes it now occurs in sraviSta, ie., the naxatra next to

When RigVedis and Yajur Vedis found this difference, they had to decide
which day to perform either on the pUrNima or on SravaNa (since they were
not happening on the same day anymore).  Yajur Vedis felt pUrNima was more
important and observed it on that day and Rig Vedis felt that SravaNa was
more important and observed it on that day.  That is how they split.

Also, note in Tamil the festival is called "AvaNi-avittam" (Tamil equivalent
of SrAvaNa-sraviSta), indicating the new naxatra where the pUrNima occurs.

Note:  sraviSta is the naxatra next to SravaNa.  It is called dhaniSta in
North.  sraviSta is what it is called in naxatrasooktam and dhaniSta is what
it is called in hora SAstrAs.  Also interesting to note is that SravaNa
naxatra is ruled by moon, the presiding diety of mind, the faculty of all

S. V. Subrahmanian.
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