‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’: Does it have its origin in the Vedas?

The issue is not only that these mythological texts are being hailed as repositories of Indian culture but also that the texts are cited as the source of maxims that don’t at all figure in them. This is intellectual dishonesty, writes Dwarka Bharti

A deep respect and veneration for the Vedas is ingrained in most Indians. That is why they readily accept anything when they are told that it is from the Vedas. What is written in the Vedas is accepted as an axiom. There is a shloka, “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam”, which means that “all those who dwell on this earth are a family”. There is confusion about the origin of this shloka. However, ordinary people consider it as part of the Vedas. It is also believed that the Vedas are Apaurusheya (not written by men) and are the creation of god. Now, something that is of divine origin has to be accepted in its entirety. The Vedas are as important for the Hindus as the Bible is for Christians and the Quran for the Muslims. There are four Vedas (Rigveda, Samveda, Yajurveda and Atharvaveda) and 11 Upanishads. All these books are treated as sources of divine knowledge. Hindus believe that no other religious text in the world can even come close to the Vedas. For centuries, Vedas have been determining the conduct and the rites of the Hindus.

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