You are here: Sri Vaishnava Home Page : Bhakti List : Archives : September 2000

RE: Shukla yajur veda

From: Sriram Ranganathan (
Date: Thu Sep 07 2000 - 16:39:40 PDT

Here is another interesting version regarding the 'origins' of  Shukla yajur

Sage vEda vyAsa taught bailar, vaisambAyanar, jaimini, and sumandhu - rig,
yajur, sAma, and atharva vedAs respectively. And each of them had many more
disciples/sishyAs studying under them.

Sage vaisambhAyanar trained his sishyAs from mithilApuri. One of his
disciples was yagnavAlkiya. As part of the daily routine, one sishyA went to
the King's (Janaka) court everyday to hand-over the akshadhai (rice mixed
with turmeric - showered on the head of a person as a sign of blessing, when
bowing to a guru or one's elders). Once, during yagnavAlkiya's turn, the
king was away on duty, and yagnavAlkiya placed the akshadhai on the king's
throne and hurried back for his classes - without waiting for the king's

Upon arrival, the king, surprised and amazed to find the akshadhai sprouting
into a plant and spreading over the throne, sends for the sishyA,

yagnavAlkiya turns down the request, due to his training schedule. Sage
vaisambhAyanar misconstrues yagnavAlkiya's behavior as a sign of arrogance
and orders him to 'throw out' whatever he has learnt and quit.
And yagnavAlkiya obeys the order quite literally. Perplexed, the sage orders
the other sishyAs to take the form of "titthri pura" - a form of
dark-colored pigeon and swallow the vEdAs 'thrown out'. Because the sishyAs
received that part of vedAs by taking the form of "titthri pura", a portion
of vEdAs got to be known as "TaithriyOpanishad" or Krishna yajur vEdam.

yagnavAlkiya then proceeded to learn under sUrya bhagavAn, (Sun God) and
whatever he learnt was known as vAjasnEya samhitA or shukla yaju vEdam.


           - SrImate rAmAnujAya namaH -
To Post a message, send it to:
Search archives at