Sankhayana Aranyaka

The Shankhayana Aranyaka belongs to Kaushitaki and Shankhayana recension of the Rigveda. The Aranyaka is considered as a Vedic text containing mystic and spiritual thoughts related to Vedic Philosophy and Ritualistic concept.

It is divided into fifteen chapters, out of which chapters third, fourth, fifth and sixth are considered as Kaushtaki Upanishad and chapters seventh and eights as Samhitopanishad. Content of the Aranyaka includes Mahavrata, description about the Upanishadic thoughts (Kaushitaki and Samhitopanishad), greatness of Prana, mystic implication of the Agnihotra ritual, spiritual practices for warding off death and sickness, results of prayer, philosophical matters such as penance, faith and self-control, and genealogy of teachers from Brahma to Guna-Sankhayana.

The Shankhayana Aranyaka present about divinity of human life based on integral perfection, as it says “All divine personalities are inherent in the Purusha, just as Agni in speech, Vayu in Prana, the Sun in the eyes, the Moon in the mind, the directions in the ears and water in the potency. The one who knows this, says the Aranyaka, and in the strength of that conviction goes about eating, walking, taking and giving, satisfies all the gods and what he offers in the fire reaches those gods in heaven.(10-1).”

Contents of the Shankhayana Aranyaka are quite similar to the Aitareya Aranyaka.