Witzel’s New Revealation – Rigveda is not Indian, but foreign !

published on July 11, 2009

The Third Conference of Michael Witzel at Pondicherry!






By Veda Prakash

The visit of Michael Witzel to Pondicherry had been intriguing as his visit was kept secret[1] and in fact, the so-called conference there, was held as a “closed door meeting”, where only 11 persons were there from the French Institute.

 

Note: I was not at Pondicherry and I thank friends for giving these details. As they requested their names not to be mentioned, their names are withheld. Here, whatever inputs received from the Pondicherry friends are given without the square brackets [ ], whereas my comments, inferences and implications are given [in the square brackets as shown].

 

IVC seals were not of religious nature
: Witzel initially spoke about his interest in Indus script researches and Rigveda studies. According to him the seals and tablets found at the Indus valley sites cannot be called religious in nature. They have nothing to do with religion, particularly that of India, as popularly believed. The seals do not contain any script and they do not form any language. Thus, his stand shifting from denying the status of “script” with “language” to the IVC signs, symbols and pictograms to the denying of any “religious status” attached to it.

 

[Why the denial of “religious status” to the IVC seals? Here, the dogmatic persistence of Witzel is revealing, as the fundamentalist Islamist and Pakistani fiends[2] of www.allempires.com were arguing with our Indian friends[3] in the same manner. Of course, those Jihadi-friends want to call it as “Pre-Islamic Civilization” that has nothing to with India and Indian history. In the same way, Witzel argues that Rigveda does not belong to India, the “horned-Lord of animals” is not Indian Siva[4], but some other deity! He would not, however, say to which religion such God or LORD GOD or HORNED GOD belongs to.]
 

Rigveda and IVC: Any study or view that correlates them with Rigveda is false as Rigveda according to him comes into picture (composed ?!!) after 1500 years. According to him the religion of the Indus civilization is not at all Vedic and it is yet to be decided. The Rig Vedic Sanskrit was entirely different from the Paninian or Kalidasa Sanskrit. Many of the Rigvedic words have been different from that of popular Sanskrit of India.

 

[Why Witzel has gone to the extent of asserting that such comparison itself is false? We have to analyze his assertions:

 

Ø      Any study or view that correlates them with Rigveda is false as Rigveda according to him comes into picture (composed ?!!) after 1500 years.

According his another assertion found elsewhere, he says that Sayana is only 600 years elder to him. N. Mahalingam mentions his age is 66 so Sayana was there in “Karnataka” about 600 + 66 = 666 years ago before Witzel YBW (years before Witzel). Did he imply that Sayana knew IVC seals?

Ø      According to him the religion of the Indus civilization is not at all Vedic and it is yet to be decided.

So the Indians could immediately remove such chapters from the history books of India immediately.

Ø      The Rig Vedic Sanskrit was entirely different from the Paninian or Kalidasa Sanskrit.

That Sayana did not know Rigvedic Sanskrit of Punjab and the Indian Sanskrit Pundits and Professors do not know it, but he alone knows it and he could explain by application of some tricks, as he asserted before the Pundits on 6th evening at Sanskrit College, Mylapore, Chennai. That is why perhaps, Mananiya Sankaranarayanan was so thrilled and enthralled to confer him with a title { } placing him only next to Max Mueller!

Ø      Many of the Rigvedic words have been different from that of popular Sanskrit of India.

That is Indian Sanskrit Pundits or Sanskrit knowing people do not know Rigvedic Sanskrit. And therefore, they are incompetent to study and research about Rigvedic Sanskrit. Perhaps, he may apply for rights of “Rigvedic Sanskrit”. Interestingly, N. Mahalingam exposed the secret[5] by informing the audience that he “recites Rigveda daily, but we India have forgotten Rigveda”. Whether, it is a mere coincidence or otherwise, we do not know and we may have to clarify from Mananiya N. Mahalingam only.]
 

Witzel Sayana was only 600 years elder to him: “Sayana, the commentator of Rigveda had been just 600 years elder to me”, asserted Witzel and claimed that Sayana from Karnataka, could not have understood the Sanskrit that was spoken in Punjab nearly 2000 years before him. While Punjab was casteless and classless society, Sayana lived in Karnataka with full grown caste system. So his commentary in many places and on many matters is unreliable except for the interpretation and conduct of Vedic sacrifices. Thus for Rigvedic Indians, Rigveda is not Indian, but foreign.

 

Ø      “Sayana, the commentator of Rigveda had been just 600 years elder to me”, asserted Witzel

That is all. Thus, after Sayana, anybody in India is nothing for him, as he only knows the Rigvedic Sanskrit and nobody else!

Ø      Witzel claimed that Sayana from Karnataka, could not have understood the Sanskrit that was spoken in Punjab nearly 2000 years before him.

Historically, at many places separated by more than thousands of kilometers and as well as thousands of years gap, the same language was used, written in inscriptions. Pallava script was used in South India and as well as in SEA. Ironically, the so-called Pallava script of SEA region is dated to “Pre-Pallava” period, just like Sri Lankan Brahmi is dated earlier to Indian Brahmi!. Yet, Witzel is making such claims.

Ø      While Punjab was casteless and classless society, Sayana lived in Karnataka with full grown caste system.

It is not known as to whether he makes such remarks to Rigvedic period, or Sayana period or Witzel period as each is separated from other by 2000 years and 600 years, as determined by himself. Then between 691 BCE and c.1400 / 1409 CE, the caste system would have been evolved. So between these periods, i.e, from the people who dominated in Indian society or invaded into India and others must have been responsible for such non-existence thing to get introduced.

Ø      So his commentary in many places and on many matters is unreliable except for the interpretation and conduct of Vedic sacrifices.

Thus, just for rituals, we can rely upon Sayana and not for his commentary. So he reveals the fact that the translations of Griffiths, Wilson and others also may not be reliable. And Witzel himself may come out with his translation of Rigveda and that is reliable. Like Roberto de Nobili[6], he is going to give the real Rigveda!

Ø      Thus for Rigvedic Indians, Rigveda is not Indian, but foreign.

Of course, N. Mahalingam has confessed already. Hereafter only Pakistanis are going to claim Rigveda.

 

Wizel came to India to collect funds!
Harvard University now does not have funds and they are in difficulty. In fact, he has come to India to collect funds. There have been many Indians or Hindus of Indian origin in USA and they have been funding to such type of nationalist / Hindutva studies, but for conducting research, there are no funds.

 

[Perhaps, this has been more revealing[7] that he has come here to collect funds!

 

Ø      Harvard University now does not have funds and they are in difficulty.

Harvard University does not provide funds as he has engaged in the heathenish work or his work is still not enough to satisfy them.

Ø      In fact, he has come to India to collect funds.

We do not know to whom so far he has contacts and how much they are going to donate to him etc. Or perhaps, indirectly, he wants to collect from Indians and pay to California authorities to pay[8] for CAPEEM proceedings!

Ø      There have been many Indians or Hindus of Indian origin in USA and they have been funding to such type of nationalist / Hindutva studies, but for conducting research, there are no funds.

Of course, the idiotic communal Hindus do not fund secularists like Witzel or the neo-Nobili who is going to restore Rigveda exactly as it was in Pakistan or Punjab or Central Asia or Africa as Neanderthal and Sayana did not know, but he only knows.]
 

Witzel debunks N. S. Rajaram’s book:
When attention was drawn to N. S. Rajaram’s book on IVC, Witzel openly debunked it. Witzel also pooh-poohed some of the recent studies of Mr. Rajaram in this regard.

 

His low opinion on Indian manuscripts:
Generally he has derisive views on the manuscripts libraries in Bharat and particularly in Varanasi. He told that he is yet to get the copy of the manuscript from Varanasi for which he had paid the money[9], etc. in 1974. It is ironical, because, he was accused of smuggling a valuable Sanskrit manuscript out of India. Perhaps, just suppress his illegal activity,he tried to divert the issue.

 

[The so-called derisive attitude exposes his ontogenic pyretics rather the real appreciation. It is just like Dr. (Vincent John Adams) Flynn, the Australian Professor who used to come to India and smuggle out pre-Mauryan antiquities including coins and was caught red-handed at Indira Gandhi International Airport and then escaped through Indo-Australian Diplomatic agreement. He has been a very close and good friend of AAA Rizvi, Nural Hassan, Irfan Habib and other “eminent” and “elite” historians of India!]
His stay in Nepal, Kashmir etc: He recollects his stay at Nepal and remembers his stay in Srinagar, in better times during 1976 with Pandit Brahmins[10] and he had the opportunity to observe the sraddha rites performed by them.

 

His friend Steve Farmer writes whatever wants and supports with his biased attitude. When certain reports appeared in India media[11] as early as in 2005, he jumped and cried “defamatory”[12], but he could not understand the feelings of Indians. If the so-called anti-Indian groups[13] aid and abet with MW, he could not understand with all his wisdom and knowledge whether their interests had been right or left or middle.

 

Note: I shall add, if I get more material about his Pondicherry visit, as it has more interesting details.

 

Vedaprakash

11-07-2009

 

[1] As the first and second conferences were held in guarded and secretive manner preventing others from attending, as the organizers with vested interests, his visit to Pondicherry and his activities there were perhaps, totally unnoticed.

[2] Kindly refer to www.allempires.com where they have vehemently opposed and even prevented us posting comments etc.

[3] K. V. Ramakrishna Rao, Devapriya Solomon, M. Nachiappan, AlokaParyetra, Jayachandran, Vedaprakash, and others.

[4] This has been his main emphasis at the Sanskrit College conference, which was seriously questioned by K. V. Ramakrishna Rao, but Witzel escaped from answering!

Vedaprakash, The First Conference of Michael Witzel of Harvard University, dated 07-07-2009 appearing in different sites and discussion groups.

http://ontogenyphylogenyepigenetcs.wordpress.com/2009/07/11/the-first-conference-of-micheal-witzel-of-harvard-university/

http://ontogenyphylogenyepigenetcs.wordpress.com/the-second-conference-of-michael-witzel-at-madras-university/

 

 

[5] Vedaprakash, The First Conference of Michael Witzel of Harvard University, dated 07-07-2009, see para.2.

 

[6] Perhaps, the poor Indians / Hindus still do not know how these Christians conduct “dialogue”. Many times, they conduct such tricks but later declared that they had dialogues with the heathen Hindus and won them in their conferences and dialogues. How MW has been stressing that he has been the only authority in Rigveda and the implication has been exactly this.

[7] None could believe that these Harvard professors fly here and there, enjoy Five-Star Hotel benefits with executive comforts, yet they claim their University does not provide funds! Here, in Chennai, in spite of his stand, the Chennaivasis / Chennaiwalas / Madarasis treated him well and even defended him e.g, Iravatham Mahadevan, N. Mahalingam, Sankaranayanan, etc.

[8] The California Department of Education and the State Board of Education have agreed to pay US $ 175,000 to the California Parents for the Equalisation of Educational Materials (CAPEEM) – the organisation formed by Hindu American parents – to fight the case against the California State. http://capeem.org

[9] Actually, he was accused of smuggling a rare manuscript out of India, but he cleverly blames that he was not given manuscript, though he paid moneyt in 1974!

[10] Michael Witzel, The Brahmins of Kashmir, http://www.scribd.com/doc/7738420/The-Brahmins-of-Kashmir-by-Michael-Witzel

[11] Kanchan Gupta, Harvard Don Denigrates Hindus, The Pioneer dated 25-12-2005.

Sandhya Jain, http://www.hindustan.org/forum/showthread.php?t=2665

[12] Farmer notes, “Defamatory article directed against WW…………that appeared in the right-wing new Delhi newspaper, The Pioneer, on Christmad Day, 2005. The author is Kanchan Gupta, a colunist closely associated with the Hindutva right in India (And what interesting tales can be told about him!)”

[13] The manner in which these issues play out is enlightening. Harvard professor Michael Witzel’s supporters in the California textbook battle include two evangelical bodies: Dalit Freedom Network and Dalit Solidarity Forum in the USA. DFN president Joseph D’Souza also heads the All-India Christian Council; he appealed to a US Congressional Committee to get ‘Scheduled Caste’ status for India’s ‘Dalit’ Christians. The manner in which these issues play out is enlightening. Harvard professor Michael Witzel’s supporters in the California textbook battle include two evangelical bodies: Dalit Freedom Network and Dalit Solidarity Forum in the USA. DFN president Joseph D’Souza also heads the All-India Christian Council; he appealed to a US Congressional Committee to get ‘Scheduled Caste’ status for India’s ‘Dalit’ Christians.

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