Gautama Maharishi was a Rigvedic sage in Hinduism, finds mentions in Jainism and Buddhism. The Rig Veda has several suktas; the Vedic sage Gautama is credited with authoring many hymns in Mandala 1. He was the son of Rahugana, belonging to the lineage of Angirasa. Gautama was the progenitor of the paternal Gautama gotra lineage. Gautama and Bharadvaja share a common ancestry, as they are both descended from Angirasa, sometimes they are both bracketed together under the name Angirasa; the Devi Bhagavatam says that the river Godavari is so named because of its association with Gautama. He had themselves discoverers of Mantras. There is a hymn called Bhadra in the Sama Veda; the descendant of Lord Shiva as Trimbakeshvar, that constitutes the source of the Jyotirlinga nearby, happened for the sake of Gautama. The Brahmanda Purana mentions that one of the sub-branches of the Raanaayani branch of Sama Veda was initiated by this Gautama; some famous disciples of Gautama were Praachina-yogya, Shaandilya, Gārgya, Bharadvaja.
A Dharmasutra was not authored by Gautama Maharishi. Akṣapāda Gotama is the 6th century BCE founder of the Nyaya school of Hindu philosophy, not to be confused with Vedic Sage Gautama Maharishi. Buddhist pali canon texts traces Buddhas paternal lineage to Vedic sages Gautama and Angirasa, he is therefore known as "Gautama" Buddha. Jainism traces tirthankara Indrabhuti Gautama paternal lineage to Vedic sage Gautama. Collection of stories on Gotama Maharshi: 1, 2, 3 Gotama Maharshi
Buddhism is the world's fourth-largest religion with over 520 million followers, or over 7% of the global population, known as Buddhists. Buddhism encompasses a variety of traditions and spiritual practices based on original teachings attributed to the Buddha and resulting interpreted philosophies. Buddhism originated in ancient India as a Sramana tradition sometime between the 6th and 4th centuries BCE, spreading through much of Asia. Two major extant branches of Buddhism are recognized by scholars: Theravada and Mahayana. Most Buddhist traditions share the goal of overcoming suffering and the cycle of death and rebirth, either by the attainment of Nirvana or through the path of Buddhahood. Buddhist schools vary in their interpretation of the path to liberation, the relative importance and canonicity assigned to the various Buddhist texts, their specific teachings and practices. Observed practices include taking refuge in the Buddha, the Dharma and the Sangha, observance of moral precepts, monasticism and the cultivation of the Paramitas.
Theravada Buddhism has a widespread following in Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia such as Myanmar and Thailand. Mahayana, which includes the traditions of Pure Land, Nichiren Buddhism and Tiantai, is found throughout East Asia. Vajrayana, a body of teachings attributed to Indian adepts, may be viewed as a separate branch or as an aspect of Mahayana Buddhism. Tibetan Buddhism, which preserves the Vajrayana teachings of eighth-century India, is practiced in the countries of the Himalayan region and Kalmykia. Buddhism is an Indian religion attributed to the teachings of the Buddha born Siddhārtha Gautama, known as the Tathāgata and Sakyamuni. Early texts have his personal name as "Gautama" or "Gotama" without any mention of "Siddhārtha," which appears to have been a kind of honorific title when it does appear; the details of Buddha's life are mentioned in many Early Buddhist Texts but are inconsistent, his social background and life details are difficult to prove, the precise dates uncertain. The evidence of the early texts suggests that he was born as Siddhārtha Gautama in Lumbini and grew up in Kapilavasthu, a town in the plains region of the modern Nepal-India border, that he spent his life in what is now modern Bihar and Uttar Pradesh.
Some hagiographic legends state that his father was a king named Suddhodana, his mother was Queen Maya, he was born in Lumbini gardens. However, scholars such as Richard Gombrich consider this a dubious claim because a combination of evidence suggests he was born in the Shakyas community – one that gave him the title Shakyamuni, the Shakya community was governed by a small oligarchy or republic-like council where there were no ranks but where seniority mattered instead; some of the stories about Buddha, his life, his teachings, claims about the society he grew up in may have been invented and interpolated at a time into the Buddhist texts. According to the Buddhist sutras, Gautama was moved by the innate suffering of humanity and its endless repetition due to rebirth, he set out on a quest to end this repeated suffering. Early Buddhist canonical texts and early biographies of Gautama state that Gautama first studied under Vedic teachers, namely Alara Kalama and Uddaka Ramaputta, learning meditation and ancient philosophies the concept of "nothingness, emptiness" from the former, "what is neither seen nor unseen" from the latter.
Finding these teachings to be insufficient to attain his goal, he turned to the practice of asceticism. This too fell short of attaining his goal, he turned to the practice of dhyana, which he had discovered in his youth, he famously sat in meditation under a Ficus religiosa tree now called the Bodhi Tree in the town of Bodh Gaya in the Gangetic plains region of South Asia. He gained insight into the workings of karma and his former lives, attained enlightenment, certainty about the Middle Way as the right path of spiritual practice to end suffering from rebirths in Saṃsāra; as a enlightened Buddha, he attracted followers and founded a Sangha. Now, as the Buddha, he spent the rest of his life teaching the Dharma he had discovered, died at the age of 80 in Kushinagar, India. Buddha's teachings were propagated by his followers, which in the last centuries of the 1st millennium BCE became over 18 Buddhist sub-schools of thought, each with its own basket of texts containing different interpretations and authentic teachings of the Buddha.
The Four Truths express the basic orientation of Buddhism: we crave and cling to impermanent states and things, dukkha, "incapable of satisfying" and painful. This keeps us caught in saṃsāra, the endless cycle of repeated rebirth and dying again, but there is a way to liberation from this endless cycle to the state of nirvana, namely following the Noble Eightfold Path. The truth of dukkha is the basic insight that life in this mundane world, with its clinging and craving to impermanent states and things is dukkha, unsatisfactory. Dukkha can be translated as "incapable of satisfying," "the unsatisfactory nature and the general insecurity of all conditioned phenomena". Dukkha is most translated as "suffering," but this is inaccurate, since it refers not to episodic suffering, but to the intrinsically unsat
India known as the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh largest country by area and with more than 1.3 billion people, it is the second most populous country as well as the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives, while its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand and Indonesia; the Indian subcontinent was home to the urban Indus Valley Civilisation of the 3rd millennium BCE. In the following millennium, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism began to be composed. Social stratification, based on caste, emerged in the first millennium BCE, Buddhism and Jainism arose. Early political consolidations took place under the Gupta empires. In the medieval era, Zoroastrianism and Islam arrived, Sikhism emerged, all adding to the region's diverse culture.
Much of the north fell to the Delhi Sultanate. The economy expanded in the 17th century in the Mughal Empire. In the mid-18th century, the subcontinent came under British East India Company rule, in the mid-19th under British Crown rule. A nationalist movement emerged in the late 19th century, which under Mahatma Gandhi, was noted for nonviolent resistance and led to India's independence in 1947. In 2017, the Indian economy was the world's sixth largest by nominal GDP and third largest by purchasing power parity. Following market-based economic reforms in 1991, India became one of the fastest-growing major economies and is considered a newly industrialised country. However, it continues to face the challenges of poverty, corruption and inadequate public healthcare. A nuclear weapons state and regional power, it has the second largest standing army in the world and ranks fifth in military expenditure among nations. India is a federal republic governed under a parliamentary system and consists of 29 states and 7 union territories.
A pluralistic and multi-ethnic society, it is home to a diversity of wildlife in a variety of protected habitats. The name India is derived from Indus, which originates from the Old Persian word Hindush, equivalent to the Sanskrit word Sindhu, the historical local appellation for the Indus River; the ancient Greeks referred to the Indians as Indoi, which translates as "The people of the Indus". The geographical term Bharat, recognised by the Constitution of India as an official name for the country, is used by many Indian languages in its variations, it is a modernisation of the historical name Bharatavarsha, which traditionally referred to the Indian subcontinent and gained increasing currency from the mid-19th century as a native name for India. Hindustan is a Middle Persian name for India, it was introduced into India by the Mughals and used since then. Its meaning varied, referring to a region that encompassed northern India and Pakistan or India in its entirety; the name may refer to either the northern part of India or the entire country.
The earliest known human remains in South Asia date to about 30,000 years ago. Nearly contemporaneous human rock art sites have been found in many parts of the Indian subcontinent, including at the Bhimbetka rock shelters in Madhya Pradesh. After 6500 BCE, evidence for domestication of food crops and animals, construction of permanent structures, storage of agricultural surplus, appeared in Mehrgarh and other sites in what is now Balochistan; these developed into the Indus Valley Civilisation, the first urban culture in South Asia, which flourished during 2500–1900 BCE in what is now Pakistan and western India. Centred around cities such as Mohenjo-daro, Harappa and Kalibangan, relying on varied forms of subsistence, the civilization engaged robustly in crafts production and wide-ranging trade. During the period 2000–500 BCE, many regions of the subcontinent transitioned from the Chalcolithic cultures to the Iron Age ones; the Vedas, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism, were composed during this period, historians have analysed these to posit a Vedic culture in the Punjab region and the upper Gangetic Plain.
Most historians consider this period to have encompassed several waves of Indo-Aryan migration into the subcontinent from the north-west. The caste system, which created a hierarchy of priests and free peasants, but which excluded indigenous peoples by labeling their occupations impure, arose during this period. On the Deccan Plateau, archaeological evidence from this period suggests the existence of a chiefdom stage of political organisation. In South India, a progression to sedentary life is indicated by the large number of megalithic monuments dating from this period, as well as by nearby traces of agriculture, irrigation tanks, craft traditions. In the late Vedic period, around the 6th century BCE, the small states and chiefdoms of the Ganges Plain and the north-western regions had consolidated into 16 major oligarchies and monarchies that were known as the mahajanapadas; the emerging urbanisation gave rise to non-Vedic religious movements, two of which became independent religions. Jainism came into prominence during the life of Mahavira.
Buddhism, based on the teachings of Gautama Buddha, attracted followers from all social classes excepting the middle
Mahavira known as Vardhamāna, was the twenty-fourth tirthankara who revived Jainism. In the Jain tradition, it is believed that Mahavira was born in the early part of the 6th century BC into a royal Kshatriya family in present-day Bihar, India, he abandoned all worldly possessions at the age of 30 and left home in pursuit of spiritual awakening, becoming an ascetic. Mahavira practiced intense meditation and severe austerities for 12 years, after which he is believed to have attained Kevala Jnana, he preached for 30 years and is believed by Jains to have attained moksha in the 6th century BC, although the year varies by sect. Scholars such as Karl Potter consider his biography uncertain. Mahavira attained nirvana at the age of 72, his body was cremated. After attaining Kevala Jnana, Mahavira taught that observance of the vows of ahimsa, asteya and aparigraha is necessary for spiritual liberation, he taught the principles of Anekantavada: nayavada. Mahavira's teachings were compiled by Indrabhuti Gautama as the Jain Agamas.
The texts, transmitted orally by Jain monks, are believed to have been lost by about the 1st century. The surviving versions of the Agamas taught by Mahavira are some of Jainism's foundation texts. Mahavira is depicted in a sitting or standing meditative posture, with the symbol of a lion beneath him, his earliest iconography is from archaeological sites in the North Indian city of Mathura, is dated from the 1st century BC to the 2nd century AD. His birth is celebrated as Mahavir Jayanti, his nirvana is observed by Jains as Diwali. Surviving early Jain and Buddhist literature uses several names for Mahavira, including Nayaputta, Samana, Niggantha and Bhagavan. In early Buddhist suttas, he is referred to as Veyavi, he is known as Sramana in the Kalpa Sūtra, "devoid of love and hate". According to Jain texts, Mahavira's childhood name was Vardhamāna because of the kingdom's prosperity at the time of his birth. According to the Kalpasutras, he was called Mahavira by the gods in the Kalpa Sūtra because he remained steadfast in the midst of dangers, fears and calamities.
He is known as a tirthankara. Although it is universally accepted by scholars of Jainism that Mahavira lived in ancient India, the details of his life and the year of his birth are subjects of debate. According to the Digambara Uttarapurana text, Mahavira was born in Kundpur in the Kingdom of the Videhas. Although it is thought to be the town of Basu Kund, about 60 kilometres north of Patna, his birthplace remains a subject of dispute. Mahavira renounced his material wealth and left home when he was twenty-eight, by some accounts, lived an ascetic life for twelve years and preached Jainism for thirty years. Where he preached has been a subject of disagreement between the two major traditions of Jainism: the Śvētāmbaras and the Digambaras; the Śvētāmbara tradition believes that Mahavira was born in 599 BC and died in 527 BC, the Digambara tradition believes that he died in 510 BC. The controversy arises from efforts to date the Buddha. All Indologists and historians, says Paul Dundas and others, date Mahavira's birth at about 497 BC and his death at about 425 BC.
However, the Vira Nirvana Samvat era began in 527 BC and is a firmly-established part of Jain tradition. The 12th-century Jain scholar Hemachandra placed Mahavira in the 5th century BC. Kailash Jain writes that Hemachandra performed an incorrect analysis, which along has been a source of confusion and controversy about Mahavira's nirvana. According to Jain, the traditional date of 527 BC is accurate; the place of his nirvana, Pavapuri in present-day Bihar, is a pilgrimage site for Jains. According to Jain cosmology, 24 Tirthankaras have appeared on earth. A Tirthankara signifies the founding of a tirtha, a passage across the sea of birth-and-death cycles. A member of the Kashyapa gotra, Mahavira was born into the royal kshatriya family of King Siddhartha and Queen Trishala of the Ikshvaku dynasty; this is the dynasty in which Hindu epics place Rama and the Ramayana, Buddhist texts place the Buddha, the Jains attribute another twenty-one of their twenty-four tirthankaras. According to Digambara Jains, Mahavira was born in 540 BC.
His birthday falls on the thirteenth day of the rising moon in the month of Chaitra in the Vira Nirvana Samvat calendar era. It falls in March or April of the Gregorian calendar, is celebrated by Jains as Mahavir Jayanti. Kundagrama is traditionally believed to be near Vaishali, an ancient town on the Indo-Gangetic Plain, its location in present-day Bihar is unclear because of migrations from ancient Bihar for economic and political reasons. According to the "Universal History" in Jain my
Gautama Buddha known as Siddhārtha Gautama in Sanskrit or Siddhattha Gotama in Pali, Shakyamuni Buddha, or the Buddha, after the title of Buddha, was a monk, sage, philosopher and religious leader on whose teachings Buddhism was founded. He is believed to have lived and taught in the northeastern part of ancient India sometime between the 6th and 4th centuries BCE. Gautama taught a Middle Way between sensual indulgence and the severe asceticism found in the śramaṇa movement common in his region, he taught throughout other regions of eastern India such as Magadha and Kosala. Gautama is the primary figure in Buddhism, he is believed by Buddhists to be an enlightened teacher who attained full Buddhahood and shared his insights to help sentient beings end rebirth and suffering. Accounts of his life and monastic rules are believed by Buddhists to have been summarised after his death and memorized by his followers. Various collections of teachings attributed to him were passed down by oral tradition and first committed to writing about 400 years later.
Scholars are hesitant to make unqualified claims about the historical facts of the Buddha's life. Most people accept that the Buddha lived and founded a monastic order during the Mahajanapada era during the reign of Bimbisara, the ruler of the Magadha empire, died during the early years of the reign of Ajatasatru, the successor of Bimbisara, thus making him a younger contemporary of Mahavira, the Jain tirthankara. While the general sequence of "birth, renunciation, search and liberation, death" is accepted, there is less consensus on the veracity of many details contained in traditional biographies; the times of Gautama's birth and death are uncertain. Most historians in the early 20th century dated his lifetime as c. 563 BCE to 483 BCE. More his death is dated between 411 and 400 BCE, while at a symposium on this question held in 1988, the majority of those who presented definite opinions gave dates within 20 years either side of 400 BCE for the Buddha's death; these alternative chronologies, have not been accepted by all historians.
The evidence of the early texts suggests that Siddhārtha Gautama was born into the Shakya clan, a community, on the periphery, both geographically and culturally, of the eastern Indian subcontinent in the 5th century BCE. One of his usual names was "Sakamuni" or "Sakyamunī", it was either a small republic, or an oligarchy, his father was an elected chieftain, or oligarch. According to the Buddhist tradition, Gautama was born in Lumbini, now in modern-day Nepal, raised in the Shakya capital of Kapilvastu, which may have been either in what is present day Tilaurakot, Nepal or Piprahwa, India. According to Buddhist tradition, he obtained his enlightenment in Bodh Gaya, gave his first sermon in Sarnath, died in Kushinagar. Apart from the Vedic Brahmins, the Buddha's lifetime coincided with the flourishing of influential Śramaṇa schools of thought like Ājīvika, Cārvāka, Ajñana. Brahmajala Sutta records sixty-two such schools of thought. In this context, a śramaṇa refers to one who toils, or exerts themselves.
It was the age of influential thinkers like Mahavira, Pūraṇa Kassapa, Makkhali Gosāla, Ajita Kesakambalī, Pakudha Kaccāyana, Sañjaya Belaṭṭhaputta, as recorded in Samaññaphala Sutta, whose viewpoints the Buddha most must have been acquainted with. Indeed and Moggallāna, two of the foremost disciples of the Buddha, were the foremost disciples of Sañjaya Belaṭṭhaputta, the sceptic. There is philological evidence to suggest that the two masters, Alara Kalama and Uddaka Ramaputta, were indeed historical figures and they most taught Buddha two different forms of meditative techniques. Thus, Buddha was just one of the many śramaṇa philosophers of that time. In an era where holiness of person was judged by their level of asceticism, Buddha was a reformist within the śramaṇa movement, rather than a reactionary against Vedic Brahminism; the life of the Buddha coincided with the Achaemenid conquest of the Indus Valley during the rule of Darius I from about 517/516 BCE. This Achaemenid occupation of the areas of Gandhara and Sindh, to last for about two centuries, was accompanied by the introduction of Achaemenid religions, reformed Mazdaism or early Zoroastrianism, to which Buddhism might have in part reacted.
In particular, the ideas of the Buddha may have consisted of a rejection of the "absolutist" or "perfectionist" ideas contained in these Achaemenid religions. No written records about Gautama were found from his lifetime or from the one or two centuries thereafter. In the middle of the 3rd century BCE, several Edicts of Ashoka mention the Buddha, Ashoka's Rummindei Minor Pillar Edict commemorates the Emperor's pilgrimage to Lumbini as the Buddha's birthplace. Another one of his edicts mentions the titles of several Dhamma texts, establishing the existence of a written Buddhist tradition at least by the time of the Maurya era; these texts may be the precursor of the Pāli Canon. "Sakamuni" in mentioned in the reliefs of Bharhut, dated to circa 100 BCE, in relation with his illumination and the Bodhi tree, with the inscription Bhagavato Sakamunino Bodho. The oldest surviving Buddhist manuscripts are the Gandhāran Buddhist texts, repor
Sanskrit is a language of ancient India with a history going back about 3,500 years. It is the primary liturgical language of Hinduism and the predominant language of most works of Hindu philosophy as well as some of the principal texts of Buddhism and Jainism. Sanskrit, in its variants and numerous dialects, was the lingua franca of ancient and medieval India. In the early 1st millennium CE, along with Buddhism and Hinduism, Sanskrit migrated to Southeast Asia, parts of East Asia and Central Asia, emerging as a language of high culture and of local ruling elites in these regions. Sanskrit is an Old Indo-Aryan language; as one of the oldest documented members of the Indo-European family of languages, Sanskrit holds a prominent position in Indo-European studies. It is related to Greek and Latin, as well as Hittite, Old Avestan and many other extinct languages with historical significance to Europe, West Asia, Central Asia, South Asia, it traces its linguistic ancestry to the Proto-Indo-Aryan language, Proto-Indo-Iranian and the Proto-Indo-European languages.
Sanskrit is traceable to the 2nd millennium BCE in a form known as the Vedic Sanskrit, with the Rigveda as the earliest known composition. A more refined and standardized grammatical form called the Classical Sanskrit emerged in mid-1st millennium BCE with the Aṣṭādhyāyī treatise of Pāṇini. Sanskrit, though not Classical Sanskrit, is the root language of many Prakrit languages. Examples include numerous modern daughter Northern Indian subcontinental languages such as Hindi, Bengali and Nepali; the body of Sanskrit literature encompasses a rich tradition of philosophical and religious texts, as well as poetry, drama, scientific and other texts. In the ancient era, Sanskrit compositions were orally transmitted by methods of memorisation of exceptional complexity and fidelity; the earliest known inscriptions in Sanskrit are from the 1st-century BCE, such as the few discovered in Ayodhya and Ghosundi-Hathibada. Sanskrit texts dated to the 1st millennium CE were written in the Brahmi script, the Nāgarī script, the historic South Indian scripts and their derivative scripts.
Sanskrit is one of the 22 languages listed in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution of India. It continues to be used as a ceremonial and ritual language in Hinduism and some Buddhist practices such as hymns and chants; the Sanskrit verbal adjective sáṃskṛta- is a compound word consisting of sam and krta-. It connotes a work, "well prepared and perfect, sacred". According to Biderman, the perfection contextually being referred to in the etymological origins of the word is its tonal qualities, rather than semantic. Sound and oral transmission were valued quality in ancient India, its sages refined the alphabet, the structure of words and its exacting grammar into a "collection of sounds, a kind of sublime musical mold", states Biderman, as an integral language they called Sanskrit. From late Vedic period onwards, state Annette Wilke and Oliver Moebus, resonating sound and its musical foundations attracted an "exceptionally large amount of linguistic and religious literature" in India; the sound was visualized as "pervading all creation", another representation of the world itself, the "mysterious magnum" of the Hindu thought.
The search for perfection in thought and of salvation was one of the dimensions of sacred sound, the common thread to weave all ideas and inspirations became the quest for what the ancient Indians believed to be a perfect language, the "phonocentric episteme" of Sanskrit. Sanskrit as a language competed with numerous less exact vernacular Indian languages called Prakritic languages; the term prakrta means "original, normal, artless", states Franklin Southworth. The relationship between Prakrit and Sanskrit is found in the Indian texts dated to the 1st millennium CE. Patanjali acknowledged that Prakrit is the first language, one instinctively adopted by every child with all its imperfections and leads to the problems of interpretation and misunderstanding; the purifying structure of the Sanskrit language removes these imperfections. The early Sanskrit grammarian Dandin states, for example, that much in the Prakrit languages is etymologically rooted in Sanskrit but involve "loss of sounds" and corruptions that result from a "disregard of the grammar".
Dandin acknowledged that there are words and confusing structures in Prakrit that thrive independent of Sanskrit. This view is found in the writing of the author of the ancient Natyasastra text; the early Jain scholar Namisadhu acknowledged the difference, but disagreed that the Prakrit language was a corruption of Sanskrit. Namisadhu stated that the Prakrit language was the purvam and they came to women and children, that Sanskrit was a refinement of the Prakrit through a "purification by grammar". Sanskrit belongs to the Indo-European family of languages, it is one of the three ancient documented languages that arose from a common root language now referred to as the Proto-Indo-European language: Vedic Sanskrit. Mycenaean Greek and Ancient Greek. Mycenaean Greek is the older recorded form of Greek, but the limited material that has survived has a ambiguous writing system. More important to Indo-European studies is Ancient Greek, documented extensively beginning with the two Homeric poems. Hittite.
This is the earliest-recorded of all Indo-European languages, distinguishable into Old Hittite, Middle Hittite and Neo-Hittite. I
The Vedic period, or Vedic age, is the period in the history of the northern Indian subcontinent between the end of the urban Indus Valley Civilisation and a second urbanisation which began in the central Indo-Gangetic Plain c. 600 BCE. It gets its name from the Vedas, which are liturgical texts containing details of life during this period that have been interpreted to be historical and constitute the primary sources for understanding the period; these documents, alongside the corresponding archaeological record, allow for the evolution of the Vedic culture to be traced and inferred. The Vedas were composed and orally transmitted with precision by speakers of an Old Indo-Aryan language who had migrated into the northwestern regions of the Indian subcontinent early in this period; the Vedic society was patrilineal. Early Vedic Aryans were a Late Bronze Age society centred in the Punjab, organised into tribes rather than kingdoms, sustained by a pastoral way of life. Around c. 1200–1000 BCE, Vedic Aryans spread eastward to the fertile western Ganges Plain and adopted iron tools which allowed for clearing of forest and the adoption of a more settled, agricultural way of life.
The second half of the Vedic period was characterised by the emergence of towns, a complex social differentiation distinctive to India, the Kuru Kingdom's codification of orthodox sacrificial ritual. During this time, the central Ganges Plain was dominated by a related but non-Vedic Indo-Aryan culture; the end of the Vedic period witnessed the rise of true cities and large states as well as śramaṇa movements which challenged the Vedic orthodoxy. The Vedic period saw the emergence of a hierarchy of social classes. Vedic religion developed into Brahmanical orthodoxy, around the beginning of the Common Era, the Vedic tradition formed one of the main constituents of the so-called "Hindu synthesis". Archaeological cultures identified with phases of Vedic material culture include the Ochre Coloured Pottery culture, the Gandhara grave culture, the Black and red ware culture and the Painted Grey Ware culture; the accepted period of earlier Vedic age is dated back to the second millennium BCE. After the collapse of the Indus Valley Civilisation, which ended c. 1900 BCE, groups of Indo-Aryan peoples migrated into north-western India and started to inhabit the northern Indus Valley.
The Indo-Aryans were a branch of the Indo-Iranians, which—according to the most widespread hypothesis—have originated in the Andronovo culture in the Bactria-Margiana area, in present northern Afghanistan. Some writers and archaeologists have opposed the notion of a migration of Indo-Aryans into India. Edwin Bryant and Laurie Patton used the term "Indo-Aryan Controversy" for an oversight of the Indo-Aryan Migration theory, some of its opponents; these ideas are outside the academic mainstream. Mallory and Adams note that two types of models "enjoy significant international currency" as to the Indo-European homeland, namely the Anatolian hypothesis, a migration out of the Eurasian steppes. According to Upinder Singh, "The original homeland of the Indo-Europeans and Indo-Aryans is the subject of continuing debate among philologists, historians and others; the dominant view is. Another view, advocated by some Indian scholars, is that they were indigenous to the subcontinent."The knowledge about the Aryans comes from the Rigveda-samhita, i. e. the oldest layer of the Vedas, composed c.
1500–1200 BCE. They brought with them practices; the Vedic beliefs and practices of the pre-classical era were related to the hypothesised Proto-Indo-European religion, the Indo-Iranian religion. According to Anthony, the Old Indic religion emerged among Indo-European immigrants in the contact zone between the Zeravshan River and Iran, it was "a syncretic mixture of old Central Asian and new Indo-European elements", which borrowed "distinctive religious beliefs and practices" from the Bactria–Margiana culture. The Rigveda contains accounts of conflicts between the Dasas and Dasyus, it describes Dasas and Dasyus as people who do not perform sacrifices or obey the commandments of gods. Their speech is described as mridhra which could variously mean soft, hostile, scornful or abusive. Other adjectives which describe their physical appearance are subject to many interpretations. However, some modern scholars such as Asko Parpola connect the Dasas and Dasyus to Iranian tribes Dahae and Dahyu and believe that Dasas and Dasyus were early Indo-Aryan immigrants who arrived into the subcontinent before the Vedic Aryans.
Accounts of military conflicts between the various tribes of Vedic Aryans are described in the Rigveda. Most notable of such conflicts was the Battle of Ten Kings, which took place on the banks of the river Parushni; the battle was fought between the tribe Bharatas, led by their chief Sudas, against a confederation of ten tribes. The Bharatas lived around the upper regions of the river Saraswati, while the Purus, their western neighbours, lived along the lower regions of Saraswati; the other tribes dwelt north-west of the Bharatas in the region of Punjab. Division of the waters of Ravi could have been a reason for the war; the confederation of tribes tried to inundate the Bharatas by opening the embankments of Ravi, yet Sudas emerged victorious in the Battle of Ten Kings. Purukutsa, the chief of the Purus, was killed in the battle and the Bharatas and the Purus merged into a new tribe, the Kuru, after the war. After the 12th