“Vedic poetry lacks human suffering” Oldenberg

I started reading “The Religion of Vedas” by Hermann Oldenberg (tr. Sridhar B Shrotri).  It is a pity in the absence of books on Rig Veda in Tamil we are obliged to read books either in English or translated in English.  Oldenberg is not the type of western admirers of Hind religion and Vedas   He is very critical of it. I came across this passage in that book “It (Vedic poetry) lacks human suffering……………….The poetry knows little of the abysses of misery”.  It is not surprising. A Judeo-Christian speaks here. Their philosophy believes that mankind was born of sins. First sin was the fall of Satan due to pride. The first human sin was defying the advice of God by Eve and so by Adam.  There was subsequent misery of Cain killing Abel.  Then is the story of Abraham offering to sacrifice his son Isaac.  Jesus Christ suffered for the sins of human beings.  So the Christian theology winds round sin and suffering and it is no wonder Oldenberg cannot understand that Rig Veda the basic literature of the Hindus did  not talk of sin or misery but more hedonistic  views of  Yagna( my personal view is translate this to “sacrifice” is wrong) and Soma rasa.

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