Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Bharat is ancient

Bharat is ancient

The name भरत first referred in Rigveda as Bharata (भरता), means one who nurtures. दण्डाइवेन्द्रोअजनास आसन्परिच्छिन्ना भरता अर्भकासः। अभवच्च पुरएता वसिष्ठ आदित्तृत्सूनां विशो अप्रथन्त। (RV.7.33.6). The Bharata (भरता) tribe were inferior and shorn of their possession like the staves for driving cattle; but Vasiṣṭha joined them with his men (tritsu) as priest, with whom their (Bharata) strength increased.

As per the story of Rigveda Indra with the help of the divine power of Sage Vashishtha (and his men Tritsu) saved King Sudas. Sudas fought a battle against ten kings on the bank of river Parushni (probably Ravi) and became victor. It suggests that India was a land of Bharata and other tribes but the kings of Bharata tribe succeeded in establishment of their kingdoms over North India, therefore, the land of Aryavarta got the name Bharata (भरता). 

The son of King Dushyant and Shakuntala in this race was named Bharat (भारत) who became very famous. Kauravas and Pandavas were descendants of this Bharat King/tribe. The word Bharat is used 22 times for the descendants of Bharat in Gita of Mahabharata. Sanjay used it twice for addressing Dhritraashtra and Shre Krishna used it 20 times for Arjuna. Bharat (descendant of Bharat) was used in verses 1.10 and 1.24 for Dhritraashtra and in verses 2.14, 2.17, 2.28, 2.30, 3.25, 4.7, 4.42, 7.27, 11.6, 13.3, 13.34, 14.3, 14.4, 14.8, 14.9, 14.10, 15.19, 15.20, 16.1, 16.3, 16.3, 18.62 for Arjuna. 

Vishnu Purana has described a geographical location as Bharat. It reads, उत्तरं यत्समुद्रस्य हिमाद्रेश्चैव दक्षिणम्। वर्षं तद् भारतं नाम भारती यत्र सन्ततिः॥meaning, the country that lies to the north of the ocean and to the south of the snowy mountains is called Bharata as there dwell the descendants of Bharat.

Vedas were composed between 1200 to 1500 BCE. Mahabharata was composed between 3rd century BC to 3rd Century AD. Vishnupuran was estimated to be composed between 1st century to 9th century AD. 

All the three sources are in Sanskrit. Linguistically, Vedas were written in Vedic Sanskrit (invented 12-15 centuries BCE) and Gita and Vishnu Purana were written in Classical Sanskrit (invented 4th century BCE). Therefore, the name of this country as Bharat, as descendants of Bharat or the land between the mountains and ocean/sea is very ancient. 


13 September 2023


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