The work presents to the student of religion, in objective form and with constant reference to the original sources and to modern discussions, a comprehensive but concise account of the whole of the religion and philosophy of the Vedic period in India.
The work comprises twentynine chapters grouped in five main parts:
- (i) Sources,
- (ii) God and demons of the Veda,
- (iii) Vedic ritual,
- (iv) Spirits of the dead,
- (v) Philosophy of the Veda. It draws mainly from the original sources.
A genuine student of religion and philosophy will find in this work an invaluable and exhaustive store of facts. This monumental work is meant to restore to the Vedic religion its just place in the study of theology.
About the Author:
Arthur Berriedale Keith (1879-1944), an eminent authority on Sanskrit language and literature, was born at Portobello, Edinburgh on 5 April 1879. After a brilliant academic career at Edinburgh and Balliol College, Oxford where he studied classics, Sanskrit and Pali, he entered the British Civil Service in 1901. In 1904, he was called to the bar at Inner Temple. Though better known for his deep study of Sanskrit language and literature, Keith also had a deep understanding of law.
In 1914, he joined the University of Edinburgh as a Regius Professor of Sanskrit and Comparative Philology and from 1922 he concurrently held the lectureship in the Constitution of the British Empire. Apart from being a member of the Committee on Home Administration of Indian Affairs (1919), he was also a member of a number of important Commissions. He died in Edinburgh on 6 October 1944.
Arthur Berriedale Keith's contributions on Sanskrit language and literature are diverse and are marked by a deep understanding of the obstruse subjects as is evident from his books and many articles in learned journals and translations of ancient Sanskrit Texts. His History of Sanskrit Literature, Sanskrit Drama, Classical Sanskrit Literature, Religion and Philosophy of the Veda and Upanishads, Samkhya System:
A History of the Samkhya Philosophy, Responsible Government in the Dominions apart from the translations of the Karma-Mimamsa, Aitareya Aranyaka, Sankhayana Aranyaka and Mythology of All Raees: Indian and Iranian (jointly with Albert J. Carony) and Vedic Index of Names and Subjects (jointly with A.A. Macdonell) bear testimony to his deep scholarship.