Late in his career, Girard turned his attention to just this question in a series of lectures on the Vedic Brahmanas
Larios examines the body of texts known as the Vedas, the cornerstone of Brahmanical traditions and thus of Hinduism, but his main concern is with the brahmanas
, the people who carry them in their head.
1923) lectures on the Sanskrit Brahmanas
at the Bibliotheque nationale de France in October 2002, published in English in 2011 as Sacrifice.
All meals served at the school are vegetarian, prepared by certified brahmanas
in the temple kitchen.
Aranyaka (Sanskrit: "Book of the Forest") Any of a number of texts that constitute a later development of the Brahmanas
, or expositions of the Vedas, which were composed in India about 900-700 BC.
Also considered part of Vedic literature in general are the prose interpretations later appended to the Vedas, the Brahmanas
; the treatises on meditation, the Aranyakas; and the speculative treatises, the Upanishads.
The topics include the Brahmanas
and the sacrificial systems, the Buddhistic movement and its influence on Brahmanism, the doctrine of devotion (bhakti) as developed in the puranas and tantras, and modern castes.
Black's discussion is not limited to the Upanisads only, because, as he notes, Upanisadic narratives follow from numerous precedents found in earlier material (particularly the Brahmanas
, but also other genres like the Aranyakas).
belong to the period 900-700 BC, when the sacred hymns were gathered into Samhitas ("collections").
He compares Brahmanas
Vedic sacrifice in ancient India and the sacrifice of Christ in the Gospels of the Bible and asserts that both cases of symbolic sacrifice serve as devices to prevent actual violence in society, illustrating how vital mimetic sacrifice is to the shaping of human culture.
The second part of the book concentrates on the doctrinal and institutional issues that emerged when the king attempted to apply his notions of Shaiva devotion to the larger community of brahmanas
who controlled the temples and monasteries of Jaipur and northern India in general.
In South India, where the god originated as Murugan before merging with the North Indian Skanda, he has a large following under the name Subrahmanya ("Dear to the Brahmanas