(Last Updated on : 01-04-2010)
Vedas had originated in various sections in the diverse yugas. Vishnu Purana says that the glorious Vishnu, in the form of Vyasa during Dwapara Yuga, for the benefit of mankind, had divided the Vedas into various branches. The form, in which the glorious Vishnu divides the Vedas, is named Veda-Vyasa.
It has been said that in the Vaivaswata Manwantara in the Dwapara age, the Rishis had divided the Vedas twenty-eight times and accordingly twenty-eight Vyasas have passed away who divided the Vedas
in their respective periods into four. In the Dwapara age the distribution was made by Swayambhuva
or Lord Brahma
himself; in the second period Veda-vyasa was the Manu ; in the third Usanas ; in the fourth Vrihaspati, in the fifth Savitri; in the sixth Mrityu ; in the seventh Indra; in the eighth Vasishtha ; in the ninth Saraswata; in the tenth Tridhaman ; in the eleventh Trivreshan ; in the twelfth Bharadwaja ; in the thirteenth Antariksha, in the fourteenth Vapra; in the fifteenth Trayyaruna ; in the sixteenth Dhananjaya ; in the seventeenth Kritanjaya ; in eighteenth Rina ; in the nineteenth Bharadwaja
; in the twentieth Goutama ; in the twenty-first Uttama who was also known as Haryatma; in the twenty-second Vena, who is otherwise Rajasravas, in the twenty-third, Somasushmapana also known as Trina-Vindiu; in the twenty-fourth Riksha, the descendant of Bhrigu, who is known by the name Valmiki
, the twenty-fifth Vyasa was Sakti. All together twenty eight Vyasas had divided the Vedas into four in the preceding Dwarpa Ages.
Vishnu Purana narrates that it is Lord Brahma
who had composed the Rik, Shama and Yajur Vedas. At the same time He is the ultimate essence as He is the soul of all embodied spirits. He, though at one with the Vedas
, creates them and divides them into various branches. He is author of these divisions. He is those branches collectively for that eternal lord is the essence of true knowledge.
Brahma is the cause of creation and destruction. He is great and mysterious cause of the intellectual principle (Mahat
). He is devoid of limit in time and space and is freed from diminution and decay. He is the invisible and imperishable Brahma, assuming various forms but invariable in substance and the chief self-create principle. He lightens recesses of heart, is indivisible, radiant, undecaying and multiform.
It has been described in the Vishnu Purana that the original Veda, divided into four branches, consists of one hundred thousand Stanzas-and from it originated sacrifice of ten kinds, the fulfiller of all desires.
Hence it can be concluded saying that the huge Veda tree was divided into four stems which had soon spread out into an extensive forest. Rather it can be said that various divisions and sub divisions of the Vedas sprang up gradually with the creation of the Vedas.