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Atri Smriti - Dharmashastra Text In Hinduism

Atri Smriti is a Dharmashastra text in Hinduism and it is attributed to Sage Atri. Rishi Atri is referred to as the second of the eighteen smritikaras mentioned by Yajnavalkya (Yajnavalkya-acaradhyaya chapter 4 verse 5). The text published under the title Atri Smriti in Smriti Sandarbha series has five chapters and 146 verses and the colophon reads Atreya Smriti.

The work opens with the sages approaching Atri, who was seated after the performance of Agnihotra, and asking him whether people are cleansed of their papa (wrong acts) by gift, recitation or austerities.

Sage Atri speaks of the importance of pranayama and the recitation of Pranava mantra and Gayatri mantra. The method of performance of pranayama narrated in this work is the one generally prescribed by later authorities, i.e., recitation of Gayatri mantra with all the seven vyahritis. The second and the third chapters contain some important hymns on Vedas like Satarudriyas which are considered to purify one of papa. The fourth chapter has an aphoristic prose passage and a few hymns. The fifth chapter deals with the rules governing eating, cleaning of the floor before eating, and impurities due to birth, menstruation and eclipses. There are five more verses appended at the end of the fifth chapter with talks about gifts.

Laghu Atri Smriti, the extant edition, consists of six chapters with 120 verses. It replicates the Atri Smriti and deals with some crucial topics. 

Vriddha Atreya Smriti has five chapters and about 140 verses and closely resembles the other two.

Atri Samhita, published in Smriti Sandarbha, has 398 verses with chapter divisions and deals with purification, atonement, gifts and the rules regarding the Shraddha and the qualifications of people who are fit to be invited to dine at a Shraddha.




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