"From the Vedic Samhitas down to the manuals of Vedic schools, it is observed that the Vedic ritual has undergone considerable modifications as a result of changing geographical, social and economic conditions. The tradition of solemn Vedic ritual is fast disappearing and it is becoming more and more difficult to witness a proper performance of a sacrifice that follows the tradition faithfully. It is therefore imperative to record whatever is available at present with a view to providing material necessary for compiling the cultural history of India.
A considerable amount of literature relating to Vedic ritual has been preserved down to the present day and the volume of translations of this literature into European languages is also quite large. But for a reader who has not specialized in Vedic studies, it is difficult to understand the details of the sacrificial performance merely by reading the text or even witnessing the actual performance.
This book is an attempt to explain the most basic ritual called Isti with the help of the original texts and the photographs of the actual performance of that sacrifice that took place in Pune, India, in July 1979. The book contains in all 140 photographs showing various stages of the sacrifice with explanation of the rites. It also provides a Roman transcript of the Sanskrit text of the Pavitrestiprayoga along with its English translation."